Mind the Gap! Mind the Gap! Mind the gap between the train and the platform edge!
How many times have you heard this?
A very good friend of mine has kindly allowed me to share her journey of returning to the workplace after taking a nine year career break to bring up her three children. Here is her story:
Shortly after her first child was born, she was made redundant and she felt this was a good opportunity to stay at home to focus on taking care of her young family which by this time had extended to three children and a relocation from London to Glasgow. She had more than enough to keep her occupied. Like all parents there were challenges high and low.
Shortly after she settled in Glasgow, she decided she wanted to go back into the workplace and gain a full-time position. However, despite an abundance of experience and enthusiasm, no job applications were turning into interviews. No recruitment agencies seem to return her calls. She felt many recruiters were taking one look at her CV and their algorithm went up the wall. She felt it screamed MIND THE GAP – MIND THE GAP – MIND THE GAP! The nine years of time spent away from the corporate world turned into a black hole that seem to suck up everything. She felt this black hole sucked up her skills, experience and most of all her own self- belief. She was left devastated, doubting herself and wondering if she had made a mistake.
Sometimes she struggled to stay on course but with the support of friends and family, she stuck to the goal to get a job. Finally, she had an interview and a job offer! My very tenacious friend has now secured a position at a global bank and is settling in very well. I know she will go from strength to strength.
If you are going through the same her main advice is as follows:
- The perceived GAP is only a small step that anyone can take. Reach out to friends and family for support – and you will receive it and make it easier to take that step.
- With some help, enthusiasm and determination, there is will be another train that will arrive at the platform to concentrate on – and not the gap between the train and the platform.
- More specifically, there is no career gap – there is only time spent elsewhere that shapes you into the person you are today. This is valuable experience not to be ignored.
Job searching can be a very time-consuming process and it can be challenging to keep a positive mind set. You will likely face disappointment along the way but keep persevering as the results are worth it and the right opportunity will present itself.