So you’ve been out of the job market due to redundancy. Or maybe you’ve taken a career break or been on extended maternity leave.
It’s all very legitimate but that’s not the way some employers and interviewers see it.
Here are 5 steps to help you handle conversations about your career gap and, in fact, turn the gap into a positive differentiator which helps you stand out from the crowd.
• Planning a career change?
• Starting a new business?
• Taking an extended career break?
Well – here’s a suggestion – Don’t Give Up The Day Job!
Your “day job” – i.e. the “work you’re known for” is what pays the bills when you’re making a transition. It’s what provides some stability when your new business idea or career transition takes a stumble, which it will at some stage.
So as liberating as it is to say “I’ve left my banking/legal/marketing job forever!” – don’t do it.
“Redefine ‘networking.’ You are not ‘networking.’ You are connecting – sharing your knowledge, resources, time, energy, friends, associates, empathy and compassion in a continual effort to provide value to others”
– Keith Ferrazzi
60-70% of job vacancies are filled via networks and referrals.
80% of all career changers find jobs in their new professions via a referral (and not through recruiters or job sites).
90% of freelancers and start-ups find their first client via their network of contacts.
100% of the above stats are hearsay and not scientifically proven. But we know they’re fairly accurate based on what I’ve seen in the market.
Yet most of the people reading this find networking uncomfortable and avoid it as much as they can.
Here are 5 networking myths that need to be dispelled in order for you to re-frame the whole concept of networking.
Question: “Sital, how do I maintain momentum and just “keep going” with my job search when I’m faced with constant rejections, negativity and non-response…?”
1. Don’t take it personally
• Some people won’t reply to your emails.
• Some people won’t return your calls.
• Some firms won’t reply to your job application.
Don’t take it personally. Develop a thick skin. Keep building a pipeline of opportunities, a wider set of connections, and just move on. It’s their loss, not yours.
“Why compare yourself with others? No one in the entire world can do a better job of being you than you.”
‘Julie’s got a great job, look how well she has done for herself’
‘Sanjay is so smart. I wish I’d applied myself to my studies like he has’
‘Isabel has done really well for herself – just look at that great house and the holidays she goes on’
‘Marco and Tina have the perfect family life. I’m so jealous’
‘Brian’s so ballsy. Just look at how he reinvented himself and started that business of his’
‘Emma is so organised. I wish had the kind of work-life balance she’s achieved’
Comparing yourself to others is drilled into us from childhood and school. But it’s completely misplaced and irrelevant.
Here are 3 reasons why: