A divorce can bring about a drastic change in your financial situation. You may find you need to get a job, after being a stay-at-home parent for some time. Or, that you need to take a second job in order to make ends meet. Returning to the job market can be difficult, but there are some ways to make the transition easier.
- Don’t limit your options.
Think about what kind of work you’ve always wanted to do, and not only what you’ve done in the past. Many people limit themselves to the jobs they have had experience in, or jobs that pertain to their degree. However, a job in a different field may be better for you, your children, and your new life. Don’t limit your options.
- Get the word out.
Use networking to find a job. Put out the word with family, friends, and associates that you are in the job market. Call former co-workers or supervisors and let them know of your job search. Finding a job opening and getting the job are easier when you have a recommendation from someone familiar to the employer.
- Dress for success.
Many stay-at-home parents no longer have the wardrobe to go out for job interviews. Buy one nice outfit for job hunting if your budget permits. If not, look at consignment shops for a suit in your size. Borrow clothing from a family member or friend your size, until you have the money to build your own professional wardrobe.
- Update your resume.
List all life experience you have had that might be useful in the workplace. If you’ve been a stay-at-home mom, but you’ve been the major fundraiser for your children’s school, don’t underestimate the skills you have gathered. List any volunteer jobs you have done. Think of what you are able to do, not just what you have done in the working world in the past. Keep your resume professional. Spell check, proofread, and then ask a friend to look over your resume. Most potential employers will give up on reading a resume when there are misspelled words or grammatical errors.
- Sell yourself and your skills.
Even though you may not feel confident, give yourself a pep talk before you go for that job interview, and remind yourself of your talents and abilities. You have skills to offer that your future employer needs. Take a deep breath and relax. Speak calmly and don’t be afraid to promote yourself and the contribution you can make to the company. Practice with a friend until you feel confident, if needed.
Returning to the job market can be intimidating, but with some polish and professionalism, you can overcome your nervousness. Ask any human resource staff and you will hear how difficult it can be to find good people who have a strong work ethic. Use your talents and maturity to fill the needs of their company.