Thinking back to this time last year it was impossible to imagine what 2020 had in store. You may have had a stable career plan with a clear trajectory, you may have been looking to explore a different avenue or to make a major bid for promotion. As we approach the end of the year, retaining a job looks like a major achievement and many of us have had everything thrown into the air. The COVID pandemic isn’t over and it looks like we’ll be looking at the middle of 2021 to return to some semblance of normality. How do you make career decisions in such uncertain times?
Take time to reflect on your career plan
If you find yourself unemployed or on furlough (with few expectations of returning to work), take a bit of time to reflect. Desperately applying for hundreds of jobs doing exactly what you were previously doing may result in heartbreak. If you were made redundant it’s quite unlikely your previous company’s competitors will be hiring. Times are hard. Set aside time to reflect on you career plan. Consider the following
- What’s the future of your sector? Will it change, recover, disappear?
- What’s the future of your role? Is it in danger of automation or become redundant?
- Do you / did you enjoy your job? If not, it’s time for a change.
- What other jobs are you qualified for? What transferable experience do you have? What else could you do?
- How could you improve your chances of employment? Are there additional skills or training that you could you? (see below)
Training and education has never been so accessible. There’s a vast array of courses available online, from health and safety certificates to PhDs. Software and programming skills are vital for most jobs nowadays and always in demand. It’s not just technical courses that are available. There are plenty of resources on leadership, management, teamwork, communication etc.
Be positive and look for opportunities
The world has changed in a year. Last year hospitality was booming, this year it’s on the verge of collapse. Retail is struggling and commercial property is declining fast. However, there’s been a social shift towards supporting local businesses, investing in green tech and an appreciation of innovation from the grassroots level. Keep an eye out for different opportunities – now is the time to ‘think outside the box’! Lot’s of people have been starting their own businesses too. What have you got to lose?