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What Color Is Your Parachute? 2008: A Practical Manual for Job-hunters and Career-Changers Paperback – October 1, 2007

4.2 out of 5 stars 857 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

“No one has been writing best-selling career-advice books longer than Richard Bolles.”
Wall Street Journal, 9/15/11

What Color Is Your Parachute? is about job-hunting and career-changing, but it’s also about figuring out who you are as a person and what you want out of life.” 
Time
 
“. . . one of the first job-hunting books on the market. It is still arguably the best. And it is indisputably the most popular.” 
Fast Company
 
“Bolles knows what he’s talking about: his practical job-hunting strategies are based on years of research, and best of all, they really work.” 
School Library Journal
 
“Ideally, everyone should read What Color Is Your Parachute? in the tenth grade and again every year thereafter.” 
Fortune
 
“There’s Parachute, and then there’s all the rest. . . . a life-changing book.” 
Career Planning and Adult Development Journal
 
Parachute is still a top seller and it remains the go-to guide for everyone from midlife-crisis boomers looking to change their careers to college students looking to start one.”
New York Post --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From the Publisher

*A completely revised and restructured PARACHUTE for 2005.

*Focuses on the rising problem of unemployment in the economy’s current jobless recovery.

*Offers new techniques to help job seekers find meaningful work and mission.

*200,000 copy first printing. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 456 pages
  • Publisher: Ten Speed Press; 1 edition (September 1, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1580088678
  • ISBN-13: 978-1580088671
  • Product Dimensions: 8.9 x 6.1 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (857 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,584,130 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
I though this would provide more info than the book ("What Color Is Your Parachute?") but what's inside are the same exercises... so if you have the book or are getting it, then you don't need this. On the other hand, if you don't want to read all of the insightful text of Bolles's original book, then this is a nice book of exercises! :) [I'd just recommend the original text, though.]
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Format: Paperback
I am a career coach with eight years of experience working with people wanting a new career - a better fit with their talents, more meaningful, a better work environment. If you want to choose a career that will be very fulfilling as well as something you will be successful at, forget about "Parachute". It just doesn't have the depth and wisdom it takes to coach you through this most important life decision.
Another career counselor who reviewed "Parachute" recommended that you get two other books instead. I agree. They are "The Pathfinder: How to Choose or Change Your Career for a Lifetime of Satisfaction and Success" by Lore, and "Do What You Are" by Tieger. "The Pathfinder" is the best career decision book ever, the seminal text, the masterpiece on the subject - this is, if you are serious about having a great life and unwilling to put up with less. I also agree with the other reviewer that "Parachute" is a great job hunting book, but only if you know exactly what job you are looking for. Reading "Parachute" takes some of the fear and uncertainty out of job hunting. But if you are trying to decide what to do with your life, forget about "Parachute".
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Format: Paperback
"What Color Is Your Parachute" is the first book you need if finding a job is your goal. If you've not bought this yet, you haven't started looking. It is that good.

Richard Bolles is the expert. His books sell because they are fresh each year with insight, purpose and ideas for determining what job you should do, and how to get it.

I used "Parachute" to get my first job. It continues to influence me today, as I job hunt again. (post script: two weeks after posting this review, I landed a position as a communications manager at a major firm).

Thoroughly practical, Bolles asks you questions about your mission in life. His belief is that just getting a job -- even ones you are good at -- won't be a wise decision in the long haul. He helps you see your passions mixed with skills and experience, and guides you to getting their. Though it is hardly a self-help book, it is far more useful than the ones clogging up the Top 10 list.

He keeps you accountable. Finding a job is your job if that's what you say you want. And if you aren't working, he won't let you make excuses -- you've got the time. Either you are looking or you aren't. Dr. Phil could take a note from Bolles' direct yet congenial style.

Don't bother with the hardcover. You need the paperback. This is not a sit-on-the-shelf book, but a get-down-to-business book, and you'll appreciate the flexibility while at work or on the train.

I fully recommend, "What Color Is Your Parachute" by Richard Nelson Bolles.

Anthony Trendl
editor, HungarianBookstore.com
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Format: Paperback
I'm a career counselor in private practice, working with mid-career changers and young people making these decisions for the first time. Over the years, an endless stream of clients have told me that they read "Parachute" and that it was not very useful. The problem is that the methods the author uses are simply inadequate to make this most important of life's decisions. "Parachute" became a best seller years ago because it was a breath of fresh air at a time when there were no other reasonably good career books. That time is long gone - and "Parachute" continues to sell mainly because everyone has heard of it. I recommend that you buy two truly extraordinary books to guide you to a highly satisfying career decision. The first is "The Pathfinder: How to Choose or Change Your Career for a Lifetime of Satisfaction and Success", by N. Lore. It is by far the best book on the subject. I recommend that you also buy a copy of "Do What You Are" by Tieger and use it along with "The Pathfinder" because it is the best guide to personality type. It is not my intention to denigrate "Parachute". It is an excellent guide, probably the best, if you already know exactly what you want to do and are seeking good job hunting advice. It gives courage and many excellent tips to those nervous about the job search, but for making career decisions, the books I recommended are much more useful.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I'm talking about my parachute. I'm a mid-forties Wall Street refugee, wondering what I want to be when I grow up...(Hint no jobs on Wall Street right now). So I turned to this old standard for help.

First note that this book is updated every single year, so buy the latest copy. Yes an older one will be cheaper but...don't. I first picked up the 2001 version off the bookshelf. As I read the section on the internet, I guffawed. Not the author's fault, things change drastically on the internet, especially in 8 years. So I credit the author for updating the book constantly. He also substantially rewrites it, not just changing the cover or whatever.

Second, this is not a spectator sport, you must do the exercises to make the book work. I have not yet done them, officially, on paper, but have given a lot of thought to what he asks us to do. I remember reading this book years ago (1988?) and being very annoyed. Annoyed? Yes, because I thought the author had a lot of nerve to tell me I could do anything I want to do. I could go to Hollywood? Yes. I could be an astronaut? Yes. I could be an interpreter? Yes. Pimp? Yes. Investment Banker? Yes. Yes, yes, yes. You may have to go to school, or work hard, but yes you can follow your dreams.

What if you have no dreams, like me? Well, do the exercises, and the book will help you find something to do with yourself that won't make you want to shoot yourself in the head when the alarm clock goes off. I can't wait to find out what it is for me!

Ignore the naysayers, buy the latest copy of the book, read it, do the exercises. And Good Luck.

P.S. I also recommend the workbook.
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