Previously, we talked about how you can re-enter the workforce after a career break. In summary, we suggested keeping up to speed with your work field or industry, updating your resume and work wardrobe, and re-establishing your professional network.
These are just a few of many tips when making a career comeback. There are some others that essentially involve job searching, such as building a strong online presence, familiarising with the interview process and upskilling yourself.
Here are more ideas that you should consider in making your return to the working life:
Perform a self-assessment
Jumping straight into whatever job you can find immediately, especially when it actually doesn’t suit you, might lead to constant job hopping before you eventually land the right one.
Thus, it’s much better to take some time to plan what you want to do after a career break by assessing yourself in terms of, for example, your strengths and weaknesses or your priorities and interests before and during your career break.
You should also consider employment options through questions like: Do you want to work full-time, part-time or freelance? Do you want to work for a small business or a large organisation? Do you want to run your own business? Do you want to change your career field?
Join career comeback programmes
Participating in career comeback programmes can help prepare you for your re-entry to the workforce.
In Malaysia, these programmes gear mostly towards women who are considering of returning to work after a career break due to personal reasons, their families, retrenchment or lack of expected growth or development in their previous career path.
Recently, TechSprint Academy (TechSprint), Malaysia’s first women only coding academy, has kicked off a career comeback programme called Rebound (https://www.rebound.asia/).
Supported by The Asia Foundation, the programme is specially designed and delivered by TechSprint to help women transition into tech-related careers or launch new, digital-centric ventures to encourage them to be part of the tech industry and enable them to gain financial independence.
Perhaps the very first step you should take in making a career comeback is to have the confidence and mental strength to do so.
This is because deciding to get a job after a career break can be mentally and emotionally challenging, especially when you have to confront the fear, uncertainty and apprehension of not having the ability to manage work responsibilities or adapt to changes within the working environment since you left.
Therefore, you need to rebuild your self-confidence as you re-enter the working life, whether by taking care of your health, reminding yourself of your strengths and accomplishments, or working on the aforementioned tips.
This is a weekly column by SarawakYES! – an initiative driven by Faradale Media-M Sdn Bhd and supported by Angkatan Zaman Mansang (AZAM) Sarawak – to provide advice and stories on the topics of education and careers to support Sarawakians seeking to achieve their dreams. Join us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube.
First published in the Borneo Post in print on 24th October 2020.
Photo by Ketut Subiyanto from Pexels.