Job Oportunity—Safe to say that 54,000 new private sector jobs a month isn’t likely to create a sense of economic euphoria anytime soon, but it’s sure better than negative job growth. As our economy sluggishly signals an overall upswing, the hemorrhaging seems to be over for the most part: companies are growing revenues and there ARE some jobs out there. I came across this Retail Products Management Opportunity in North Orange County, CA. Here’s a quick description of the position: “A 40-year leader in the building materials industry is ready to hire a professional with business and financial savvy as well as the creativity to both develop new products for retail and use fact based marketing expertise to grow sales. …This position requires someone with a blend of product management and channel management experience in consumer products. … Bachelor’s Degree is required, MBA even better, ideally with 5 to 10 years of experience.” Interested? You can get more info at the Barrel of Monkeyz Facebook page:

Opportunity for Jobs (Apple Eyes the iCloud)—While it’s certainly not the sexy new banana from Apple that gadget geeks wanted to get their hands on, Apple unveiled yesterday its latest innovation: iCloud. This new service intends to move us further away from using our PCs and MACs as both computers and mass storage devices, to using our PC/MACs essentially as devices through which we remotely access stored documents, music, videos, pictures, applications, etc. via the proverbial “Cloud.” From Apple’s standpoint, iCloud provides a way for customers to access their content wirelessly through a variety of devices and apps using their MAC, iPhone, iPad, etc. The “Cloud” of course, is nothing new (we’ve even blogged about it a few times at Barrel of Monkeyz), but when one of the world’s leading technology giants makes such a concerted push in that direction, it is big news. On one hand, the potential of the cloud seems limitless—just think of the convenience of being able to access any of your “stuff” from anywhere, using practically any device. On the other hand, just think of the technological hurdles that need to be overcome so you can actually get to your stuff when you want, where you want, securely. I still can’t get a cell phone signal everywhere I go, let alone a high-speed wireless connection, so what’s that mean for my ability to connect to the Cloud anytime, anywhere? Onward and upward, I say, but I’m not about to trash all my hard drives just yet.

Paying it Forward—It’s a book, it’s a movie . . .  and for growing numbers it’s a way of life. Each of us, whether in our personal or professional lives (or both), have opportunities every day to do good things for others. We can do good deeds, help a neighbor, be kind to a stranger, extend a professional courtesy, do volunteer work—you name it. And instead of expecting to get paid back for our efforts, we can simply ask the recipients of our good intentions to “pay it forward” by doing something nice for the people they encounter. It’s an easy and fulfilling way to spread some good will into the world, and to be able to make a difference in your own little corner of it. What can you do to “pay it forward” today?