Faced with a continuing global pandemic over a prolonged period, we foresee significant upheavals in employment. Organizations will lay off some staff and reposition others. That doesn’t mean that they will stop hiring new employees, but they will do it selectively. They will modify their organizational structures, for example, to weather the crisis and then select top talent to fill newly designed roles.


Under such conditions, you can enhance your value as an employee if you remain prepared. You can do this by taking some or all of the following steps:

1. EXPAND YOUR FOCUS: To further your ambitions, you may have propelled your career forward by accepting a series of upward moves. But you don’t always have to move up to advance your career. Sometimes you can expand the range of available employment options by assuming a different role within the organization that enables you to acquire new skills.

2. PREPARE YOUR RESUME: Most people update their resumes when they apply for a new role, and they often do it in haste. If you want your resume to stand out and to promote you effectively in a competitive market, you should assess it now. Is it up to date? Does it highlight your interpersonal and leadership skills as well as your hard credentials? Will it distinguish you as a valuable addition to a team in a tight employment market? Asking yourself these questions now will help you later in finding a new position or securing the one you have by helping you to articulate your value to your organization.

3. DEFINE AND ARTICULATE YOUR LEADERSHIP SKILLS: Many effective leaders cannot describe their leadership attributes in an interview. They may know that they’re good leaders, but they don’t know why, and they assume that their record will speak for itself. This may not impress potential employers, especially in an uncertain job market. They want to know not just what you do, but how you do it. What specific traits have you developed that make you a good leader? Why do people follow you? How do you influence people to do the job that you want them to do? To answer these questions and define your leadership qualities, you can start by writing down the steps you took to lead your team through times of crisis or significant change. In this unprecedented business climate, you will impress employers if you can tell them not just what you did, but how you did it, as well.

Even at the best of times, your future employment situation remains unpredictable. By doing as much as you can in advance to prepare for an uncertain future, you can feel more confident about your employment prospects in a very competitive market.

If you need assistance, please let us know. JW Associates specializes in market positioning. We provide career and outplacement coaching that addresses a wide range of topics, from defining a new focus to resume readiness and engaging successfully in interviews in a tight job market. Supported with extensive learning materials, we will conduct our sessions by phone and Skype until the current health crisis is resolved.

For more details or to schedule a complimentary 15-minute phone call, please email me.