Article by Ceri Wheeldon
Setting realistic expectations could be the key to finding a new job. Be clear in your own mind just what job you are able to do, and what job you are prepared to accept before starting your jobsearch.
How realistic is it to expect to find a similar role in the same industry?
Returning to the workplace whether through choice or redundancy is these uncertain economic times is not easy, hence it is more important than ever to be realistic about the situation you find yourself in.
- Depending on your skills and the sector you have been working in – how realistic is it for you to step into a similar role on a similar salary?
- How flexible are you willing to be (or do you need to be) in respect to the seniority of the role you are looking at and the level of salary associated with it? Be open to compromise.
- How far are you willing to commute? Is relocation an option? Are you prepared to stay away from the family home Monday to Friday in a B&B if it makes the difference between being employed or unemployed?
- Have you kept your skills up to date? Are there courses you need to take to ‘upskill’? For example, if you have been working in marketing, are up to date with all the social media tools utilised in digital marketing campaigns? Do you have all the recent accreditations expected of someone in your industry- your previous employer knew your capabilities but new employers may want that extra reassurance that you are up to date with industry trends and terminology
- Could portfolio working be an option for you? Could your skills be used by several companies on a part-time basis rather than by one company full time if so Identify skills- how/where could they be utilised
- Would your skills be needed on a short-term consultancy assignment/project basis rather than as a permanent employee?
- Is contract work an option?
- If you’ve always worked for large corporates, could you also see yourself working for a smaller company?
- Is your perception of your own strengths and weaknesses the same as an employer would see them? Ask former colleagues what they valued/admired most about your work. You may be surprised at the answers, and it could help you to think differently in respect to the value you could offer a future employer.
- Could this be a good time to set up your own business?
Give yourself time to adjust to your new circumstances. When discussing opportunities with any new potential employer you must think objectively and be clear about your understanding of the role and your ability to do it.