In these tough economic times, many people are finding it difficult to make a living. But what about all those people in top positions who are losing their jobs due to downsizing or other financial cutbacks? If you are used to a six-figure salary, it would be difficult to settle for a position at your local box store where you might earn minimum wage. So how do these top earners cope with trying to find a new job?
Recently a Time magazine article brought about this interesting (although not very sympathetic) topic regarding six-figure earners now looking for new jobs. Just like the rest of us, getting and keeping a job can be really difficult, especially when the top paying jobs are usually the first ones to be cut in order to save money for the company. But just as we all need to follow a few rules when job hunting, people used to higher wages may have to follow some new ideas in order to land another job. And are the six-figure positions still out there? According to Time, they are, but they are hard to find and even harder to land with all of the competition. Here’s how you can put yourself on the top of the hiring pile if you find yourself in this situation:
#1. Job recruiters have much more to look at than in previous years, so don’t expect to be hired right away. You’ll need to stand out from the crowd, and if possible, have VERY current abilities. Take the time to research your market before applying anywhere and update any skills you might need.
#2. Make your resume sound current. Even though you might have all the proper requirements for a position, if you don’t know the current jargon for your market, you might be passed over in favor of someone who knows the keywords. Don’t take them for granted; employers will scan a resume for keywords and discard the rest, even if someone is more qualified.
#3. Get professional help writing your resume. This may seem a waste of time and money, but professional resume writers and career coaches can really make a difference in how someone views your resume. You wouldn’t let just anyone write an advertisement for your company, so why not hire a professional to market the most important thing you have : yourself!
#4. Be flexible. I once had a friend say that she was so overqualified for a teaching position that they wouldn’t hire her. This probably wasn’t the case, but her own self-importance might have made a difference in the interview. Don’t feel as though taking a job that might have been below your former position is a bad thing. Often, your skills are still very valuable to a company, and the older you get, the less likely you’ll be in a position for the next 20 years anyway.
#5. Network, network, network! And don’t be afraid to network digitally in this day and age. You might want to try LinkedIn, which is a professional networking site whose members’ average household income is about $100,000. There is a job search feature on the site and you can post your own information so people can find you.
You can read more about this topic in Jeremy Caplan’s Time Magazine article here. Of course, we also have many resume writing books available at the library if you are interesting in updating or improving your own resume.