By Tim Klepaczyk
An all-too-common disappointing occurrence in the modern work world is the pink slip. Even the brightest go-getters are vulnerable to it.
Don’t take it personally. The harsh reality is that businesses are constantly changing, as well as the economic conditions that influence the decisions of business leaders. Fortunately, a layoff doesn’t have the stigma it once did. Still, consider the following tips to minimize its impact.
If you like your field and want to get back into it keep those subscriptions to professional magazines coming. Use the extra time to read them more thoroughly. Check out the discussions at LinkedIn groups in your field, too. This can go a long way toward reassuring potential employers that you’re keeping up with the latest. This is very important in some fields, such as IT and engineering. Also, check out prominent blogs and websites in your field
You can also use the extra time to volunteer for an appropriate professional organization. This again not only shows you’re motivated to stay current; it’s also a great place for networking. You say you dropped your membership? Many organizations have reduced fees for members who are in transition.
Consider also how to minimize the impact of past layoffs on your resume and LinkedIn profile. I recommend indicating work periods using years only. Including the months can draw attention to a layoff. Certainly you should be honest and forthcoming if, for example, you’re asked why you left former employers. However, that’s different than making it clear from the get-go that there is a gap in your work history.
The more you communicate your passion and accomplishments, the less likely a potential employer is to be concerned about or even notice a gap in your work history. Mind the gap and you’ll be safe.
Tim Klepaczyk is an RF & microwave engineer with over 20 years of experience in applications & sales and product design & validation. He also loves writing.
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