We have many friends who are part time and full time caregivers, We are boomers, sons, neighbors, nieces who are looking after the health and wellbeing of a loved one who is ill, disabled or an elderly parent. Many family members have to give up their day job, stop taking classes at university, quit their hiking club in order to be a diligent “ carer ”.
Try finding a job after four years of being home with your loved one. You’ve been changing adult diapers, dispensing medications and driving to the doctors. How do you put that on a resume?
You need to maintain relevance in your profession so that you can get up the learning curve and be contemporary in your field when it’s time to apply for a job. Your goal is to keep yourself relevant.
Being proactive and keeping up on what’s going on in your line of work is important. Most important is getting your head clear on your intentions. This is not about what you can take, but about what you can give.
Here are 7 steps to get started:
- Read the news on your industry, your type of job and the companies in your field.
- Write a biography about your professional work, career(s), and the strengths you have that add value for any prospective employer. This is where you can state the facts and also let your personality shine.
- Update your resume. Writing a good resume can take days. It’s a lot of work. You’ll be using your bio and resume in step four.
- Set up a Linked In and complete the profile as much as you can. Watch your grammar, spelling and attitude. Always write and talk with a smile on your face (Literally! This will shine through.) Your Linked-In is a valuable place to be seen by recruiters.
- Join a trade association, networking group or any other type of group/club that is relevant for your career. Volunteer to get on a committee where you know the subject and can do the work. Note: you might not be able to attend any face to face meetings because you’re homebound with your loved-one, but you can attend conference calls, use ZOOM, Skype, and any other tools to get connected to your committee. Take a deep breath and keep that smile on your face.
- Do the work you volunteered to do! Show your commitment to the mission of the committee. Don’t miss any meetings/calls. Offer to help out where you can.
- Deliver on your promises. By getting the work done that you volunteered to do, you show others your skills and reliability. You’re doing work for a greater good. People will see this, they’ll get to know you and develop relationships that you can call on later.
The more you make yourself known to colleagues in your field, the more you build a network of references and referrals for when the time comes that you need to land a new job. You’ll be in the loop – In the know. And can later ask these friends and colleagues about job postings, for introductions into companies, and to be a reference for you.