NextGen MilSpouse is going beyond traditional career tips and tricks for military spouses! We are sharing the real stories of working military spouses (just like you!) and their professional success stories on Wednesdays.
Name: Kara Pieraccini
Years as a military spouse: 5 years with husband #1, 6 with this husband (he just retired though, medically after 19 years)
Tell us your job title/profession: My title is Senior Proposal Analyst.
We all know titles don’t tell the whole story though. I work for a commercial pool company out of southern California. They have 3 offices there, as well as in Florida. I work for all of them.
I do proposals for new contracts and renovations, including replaster work, fiberglass installation, deck renovations and anything else that pops up.
On top of that, I do the daily work orders and communication with property managers and our technicians.
There’s my blog too, which is a part-time job in itself, but that’s an entirely different story.
Is this full-time, part-time, hourly, contract or freelance work?
How long have you been working in this career field?
2 years for this one
Do you work in an office, telecommute from home (or Starbucks), or a little bit of both?
It was in the office until we moved 7 months ago. Now I work from home.
How did you get this position? Was it a resume, referral, job fair? Spill your magic.
I got an interview through a woman who worked there, whose husband happened to work with my husband.
I had been submitting resumes left and right with no luck.
I guess my husband talked me up, her husband told her, she called me, they weren’t even advertising for help, but I got a job. There was no magic there, just networking and luck.
What’s the biggest challenge you’ve faced while trying to maintain a career while living the military lifestyle?
I can’t go to unit functions because so much happens during the day. When I was in the office, I wouldn’t get home until 6 most nights. The last thing I would want to do is leave to go on base for a meeting about something or another. This also meant that I wasn’t involved in a lot of my husband’s med board stuff. I wasn’t able to go to doctor appointments or other appointments with him and I feel like I should have been there.
As far as the day to day, it was never an issue. The last time he deployed, I wasn’t working as we lived overseas, but otherwise, you just figure it out and go.
Share your best life-hack for saving time or sanity during the work week:
I have to leave my phone in a different room. If I don’t, I get easily distracted by it and slack off on my work. Since I figured this out, I’m a lot more productive!
Do you and your spouse or partner split household tasks? How do you do it?
Honestly? I still do more. I cook, do laundry, deal with the kids stuff and a lot of household issues.
It’s gotten better since he retired (he retired in April of this year). He can easily do stuff if I ask, like errands or whatever, but I just prefer to do a lot of it myself. That way it’s done right!
If you have children, how do you and your spouse or partner split parenting responsibilities?
We do have children. When I worked in the office, he would pick them up in the afternoons and I would drop them off in the mornings. Now that I’m home all day, that’s not an issue. Since the kids are a little older (6 and 10), I’d say we split the duties.
Tell us one piece of tech you couldn’t live without:
Is it weird that I can’t think of one for work?
Favorite app for making the most of your day?
Nope. I don’t have any special apps on my work phone and I ignore my personal phone.
Must-have song on your productivity playlist:
I honestly like my silence. It’s never silent when the kids are home, so silence is golden for me.
What is your No. 1 tip for a military spouse on the hunt for a job?
Keep trying. Look in odd places and tell people you are job hunting.
The last few jobs I’ve had have become because either someone I knew offered me the job or someone knew I was looking and gave me chance.
I haven’t gotten a job from a resume I submitted since 2007.