Career Insights in this COVID-19 World

We all are looking for positives and silver linings to keep us going during these trying times. For me, that is the many wonderful candidates and hiring managers I am able to speak with daily. These conversations have taken on a more humbled, realistic, kind and connected feel over the months. After every call I gain a greater sense of others in the world around me, and thus I feel less alone or sad, or whatever I might be dealing with that day. Some of these conversations often times turn into pep talk sessions which I truly enjoy. No matter the outcome, I always am uplifted.  September is National Suicide Prevention Month and I think it is of the utmost importance for everyone to help as best we can.  With the unprecedented high unemployment rates, I hope  organizations and individuals across the U.S. and around the world are sensitive to this matter. I keep this in mind when I discuss staying open to diverse and flexible work schedules, styles and “offices” in our new reality. Some companies who never dreamt of allowing employees to work remote, pivoted and adapted and noticed more synergy and output.  We all perform better when we have struck the right work/life balance. It is refreshing to see many companies and leaders embracing and supporting this.  I want to share a few themes and advice from the previous past months with you.

For hiring managers/recruiters:

Communication and follow up are key. Get back to the candidate. Bad news will be typically better received than no news, particularly when it is delivered quickly. Write a warm and compassionate email. Delivering bad news isn’t easy, but it always helps to construct a rejection note with the recipient in mind. Call out that they may have been passed over for reasons outside their control. Offer to connect them to another company who might be hiring. Take this time to edit your form letters and warm them up. Encourage companies to stay engaged with the everyone they meet with. Why not, right? You may have had an internal candidate in mind or found an external candidate who was an exact match for what you wanted. Do you really want to drive away candidates who may be perfect for your next opening just because you don’t need them at the moment? What’s more, salary isn’t enough today. The truth is, it’s not always what someone is looking for to keep them with a company. Culture, professional growth, and using the newest technologies all outrank salary and benefits for contributing factors of a dream employer. Salary is important, certainly, but employees need to be able to survive in the world right now and are aware of the  economic climate. While upskilling, reskilling, and continuous learning opportunities can help you retain the talent you deserve, focus on the culture fit and being open to flexible work schedules and candidates from other locations.

For candidates:

Stay positive. Keep learning. Ask as many questions as possible and stay open to different roles, industries and locations. Reach out to recruiters and others on LinkedIn. Share a relevant article which inspired you.  Take an online learning course or go for a certification which interests you. Being able to adapt in this environment has been difficult but the loss of jobs and family can only be repaired by the love and support of everyone in our community.

We are a small team of 7 employees with big hearts and the shared goal to help people get careers they love. Please reach out to me with questions, big or small.  I am looking forward to connecting.

 

Stay safe!

-Mike

 

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