Posts Tagged ‘career planning’

5 Tips for Getting a Job After You’ve Been Fired

Wednesday, February 1st, 2017

A lot of the advice on this site is committed to cultivating proactive job seeking skills, so that you are in as much control of your career as possible. It’s always better to plan ahead, having your resume ready and interview skills finely tuned, so when great jobs come along you’re ready. That way, you can positively navigate your career path rather than suffer at the mercy of fortune.

Sometimes, unfortunately, even with the best laid plans, circumstances end up outside of your control. Getting fired can feel like the end of the world, and a complete derailment of everything you’ve worked towards, but it doesn’t have to mean you’ll never work again. Take a deep breath, remind yourself it was just a job, and use these five tips to help you land your next gig.

1. Try to get a reference.

Depending on why you were fired and who gave you the axe, you may want to see if you can still get a reference from your former employer. Being gracious and taking full responsibility for the reason of your termination, whether or not you agree with the reason, will go a long way.

To take it a step further, follow up with a thank-you note post-termination thanking the employer for the time you were employed, restating that you understand their decision and that business is business and you hope you two can keep in touch going forward. Whenever possible, it’s important to keep things businesslike and polite. Your employer will be less inclined to speak negatively if you leave on a positive note.

2. Look for outside references.

It’s more likely that you won’t be able to get a reference from the employer who fired you, so it’s important to develop your network. You need other people who know your abilities and can confidently recommend you.

Make use of your new-found free time in ways that will make you more appealing to employers and help you network with new people. For example, join a professional development group, volunteer in the community, and intern at a company in your chosen career field. Having current references who can talk about your skills will help you as you start your search for a new job.

3. Keep your head in the game.

You may want to take a break and nurse your wounds, but it’s important to keep busy and not let the gap in your resume grow.

Immediately enroll in a course, preferably an academic or technical course, to help eliminate complete gaps in employment. Also, develop a list of professionals who you can trust, with a solid knowledge of your work ethic, who can connect you to opportunities without judging the fact that you’ve been fired.

4. Choose your words carefully.

As you search for a new job, be careful about how you talk about having been fired. Comments such as ‘differences in opinion,’ ‘differences in working philosophies’ or ‘differences in creative direction’ or ‘downsizing’ or ‘were made redundant’ are all explanatory when you have been terminated from a previous job. After all, you were fired for some reason.

Whatever you do, though, don’t attack your supervisor. If you had differences with your supervisor, that’s okay. If you couldn’t deal with them, that may have been okay, too, depending on the circumstances. But personal attacks? They’re a no-no.

5. Reassess and reinvent.

Getting fired can shake your very identity, so it’s important to reassess yourself and your goals. Take the time to evaluate where your success has been in the past, and reinvent your job search to look for a whole new change of focus. Don’t be afraid of looking at education or certification in the new path.

You may have to ask yourself some hard questions about your expectations and what you’re looking for, as well. Really take the time to look within yourself and determine why the job didn’t work. This will provide an opportunity during your next interview for you to discuss why the job was not a fit for you or the company, and how you feel your strengths can be better served in the new area. Essentially, look to take the negative of a termination and use it as a positive for your next position.

So being fired isn’t the end of the world… it might even be an opportunity in disguise. But however you choose to look at things, don’t panic and make sure you effectively position yourself for your next job.

Good luck!

5 Tips for Getting a Job After You’ve Been Fired | Catherine Conlan via Monster

Employment Gaps on a Resume: Showing your Worth

Thursday, June 6th, 2013

There can be any number of possible reasons for a person to be unemployed for a period of time. No matter the causes of an employment gap, it is often and unfortunately the first thing an HR clerk, recruiter, or hiring manager will notice on a resume, usually to your detriment. However, unless the time was spent engaged in something totally unproductive, these gaps, if presented properly, can not only be downplayed and their harm minimized, but they may even prove to be helpful in securing a new job.

Employment Gap: To Mention or Not to Mention

Professional resume writers generally suggest not drawing attention to an employment gap if it is relatively short (a matter of months, for example, in which case it can usually be dealt with via formatting). When gaps are longer, it will be imperative to explain them in some way but you should not refer to illness, unemployment (even if it is clearly a result of a long recession), rehabilitation, etc., since these may suggest that you are a high-risk job seeker. Rather, you should give yourself a title that focuses attention on something positive you were doing during that time, like “Student” or “Full-Time Parent” or “Family Management.”

Employment Gap: Dealing with it in Real Life
Unemployment is not something people frequently plan ahead for or desire. In light of the recent economic downturn in the US, many job seekers have been unable to find work for extended periods of time. In these situations, it is important that you stay busy and engage in activities relevant to your field or which provide transferable skills. Even if it is volunteer work or online courses, you will want to mention it on your resume in order to ensure employers that you have been fruitful even when unemployed.

Employment Gap: Dealing with it on the Resume

In the end, it all comes down to how the employment gap is presented on your resume. If it was for a short period of time (a few months), you might only mention the years when stating the duration for each job. For example, you would write 2005-2007 and 2007-2008 rather than May 2005 – January 2007 and November 2007 – August 2008, since the latter clearly reveals a gap. If the gap is longer and cannot be concealed in this fashion, you should do your best to present your activities during this time as relevant to your job objective. A travel agent, for example, might mention vacation destinations and someone looking for work in the health care industry might mention providing primary home care for a terminally ill relative. Include internships, training, family projects, and any other relevant items.

Employment Gap: Keeping Your Head High

An employment gap is not something to be ashamed of, especially when there are legitimate reasons. So be sure to treat your time away from the work force confidently on your resume and when you are unemployed, be sure to use your time wisely and productively to improve your skills, knowledge, and real-life experience.