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Local Author Guides Job-Seekers Through Unemployment Wilderness

Lisa Mauri Thomas turned her expertise with executives into help for average workers.

Local Author Guides Job-Seekers Through Unemployment Wilderness

If a nurse in between jobs in 2002 was suddenly transported to December 2012 and tried to carry on with their quest for employment, chances are they would find the job search world had turned upside-down. Now, a local author is trying to help nurses find their way through this new kind of hunt.

"If you compare job postings 10 years ago to those now, it's like night and day. A few years ago, it would have said 'licensure required, overnights,' now there are so many different specialty areas,"  Southwest Minneapolis author Lisa Mauri Thomas said. "It was always billed as a career where you can get into it and have a good deal of job security. Turns out, that's not really the case anymore."

In between the Great Recession and a profusion of small and large health care operations, Thomas said, the nursing field has become more like everyone else's jobs—volatile, competitive, and at times confusing. 

"When you look at nursing job postings now, it’s all about the culture of the organization, the community, with bullet points of experience they’d like to see," she said, ticking off things that should sound familiar to many white-collar job seekers.

By day, Thomas is a "job search strategist," helping managers and executives figure out how to land their next dream job. One day, a friend in nursing school started picking her brain for job search tips. In trying to give her friend better answers, she started poking around the nursing profession. What she found surprised her, and led to writing a column for a prominent , which then led to a book deal.

"When I was researching my book, I often met nurses who didn't know how to network," Thomas told Patch in an interview about her new book, "Landing Your Perfect Nursing Job." "Their reaction was 'That's for business people, not us.' Well, now, (nurses) need to understand the business side of healthcare."

Now, nurses could be just as likely to be looking for employment at specialty boutique clinics as at large hospitals. Those same skills that Thomas helps her clients hone and deploy in her regular practice, she said, could help nurses make their way among this new employment landscape in a strategic way.

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