Reinvent Your Career
Have you been laid off? Sometimes, losing a job can be an opportunity — a chance to reevaluate the direction of your life and reinvent your career. And if your former company has offered outplacement assistance as part of your severance, you have the perfect tools at your disposal to make it happen.
Outplacement job counselors are there to help you get a new job, but it doesn’t necessarily have to be the same kind of job you just got fired from. Whether you’re hoping to finally break into your dream field, looking for a lifestyle upgrade, or just feeling like a change, outplacement services are there to help you zero in on your career goals, seize the opportunities that are available to you, and move forward in your professional life.
Isolate Your Professional Goals
What is it that you’ve been dissatisfied with in your professional life? What needs to change? Now’s the time to sit down with your outplacement career counselors and really whittle down your goal. Maybe you trained for a creative field and you just took this job to pay the bills until your big break — now could be the time to talk to someone about moving into a position that more closely aligns with your interests and uses your creative skills. Maybe you want to aim higher and get a better job next time — a job coach could help you showcase your skills to make that happen. Maybe you’d just like something different after years of the same old same old. Career counseling can help you identify other areas of interest and even show you how to develop the skills you’d need to get there.
Identify Your Transferable Skills
Maybe you already have training or experience in the new field you want to break into, but if you’re just looking for something different and hoping to parlay your existing skills into a completely new career path, this is your chance. Ask your outplacement assistance coach to help you identify transferable skills that you can bring to a new career, and practice highlighting those skills in your application materials and emphasizing them during interviews.
Seize Your Opportunities
If you use all of the outplacement services available to you, you should ultimately gain access to resources and opportunities that will help you find a new job faster than if you just sort of muddled through it all on your own. Use your outplacement services to the fullest. Attend the networking events and Zoom seminars, especially if you want to break into a new field. Get your resume and cover letter worked over. Practice your interviewing skills. Apply to the kind of jobs you want, and ask for help when you run into setbacks.
Networking is especially important when you want to change careers — most fields are all about who you know. And you never really know who might become a valuable connection, so you should strive to network with everybody. Start by taking advantage of the networking events you’ll be invited to as part of your outplacement assistance counseling. These events are an excellent opportunity to meet with recruiters and get access to job opportunities. Job counseling classes and seminars are also great opportunities to network.
Boost Your Online Presence
Social media can be a great way to network with thought leaders in your field and even to make a name for yourself in the blogosphere. Even when you’re not trying to change careers, prospective employers are going to search for you online, and they better like what they see. The lack of a social media presence can be just as concerning as a robust social media presence full of inappropriate content. It’s best to avoid controversial content on your social media, including criticism of a current or former job.
But using social media to reinvent your career isn’t just about reassuring skittish employers that you’re normal. It can also be a means to showcase your talents and thoughts, especially if you want to break into a creative field. Use social media to network with others in the field you want to break into, share content related to your field, showcase your achievements, and search for open positions.
Losing a job doesn’t always have to be a bad thing. Sometimes it can be a chance to refresh your career, and start doing something you’re really passionate about. Now that you have access to career counseling and time to network in your prospective field, what are you waiting for? Get out there and give your career the facelift it deserves.