The job outlook for the MBA class of 2010 is much changed since the students applied to schools in 2007 and 2008. The major industries--finance and consulting--are not hiring in the same numbers, and many students are being forced to expand their job search to industries they weren't considering before. For some, this is a good thing--cutting out the years spent in the corporate world for a high salary, allowing them to go directly to their dream second career.
According to an article in this weekend's New York Times, an increasingly popular second career for bankers, consultants and other MBA-holders is wine making. From the NYT, there is a "recent wave of M.B.A.’s [sic], bankers, architects, engineers and others who are taking over or starting wineries and infusing small boutique labels with a level of business expertise usually found only at big brands." These nontraditional wine-makers are using their business acumen in an industry where small vineyards have tiny staffs and the owner often does everything himself--from growing the grapes to designing the bottle labels and selling the product to restaurants, resellers and individual drinkers. The business background of the new crop of owners is "showing up in winery technology and designs, techniques used to grow grapes, locations that break with tradition and, most of all, a greater emphasis on business plans, spreadsheets and new marketing approaches," says the NYT.
So if you've always dreamed of running your own vineyard, now's the time! It's unlikely that these small vineyards will be at on-campus recruiting, so reaching out to potential employers may take a bit more legwork. But it'll be worth it if you can make your dream career your first career.
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