Updated December 6, 2021
In February 2020 Unemployment in the US has crossed 15% from 3.5%. Despite the $2 trillion stimulus package implemented by the government. Unemployment in the US had reached 10% during the financial crisis of 2008 and 25% during the Great Depression of the 1930s. During this pandemic, India does not have a similar job data reporting structure. But it can be said that this year will be the most challenging for the job market that we have seen in our lifetimes. If you have lost your job, cut salary or are looking towards an uncertain future, know that this is a good time to consider a career change.
Revisit Your Assumptions
Ask these questions to yourself. Would you accept your current job if it is offered to you? If no then how has your perspective changed in the future? What is the new goal that you want to get in the next 10 years, and how will you get there? Maybe the answer is that you want a career change. But first, make sure that all other areas of your life are stable. If your health, relationships, or possessions need immediate and serious work, prioritize that before embarking on a new career journey
Create Multiple Paths
Instead of relying on a single 10-year plan, create different multiple paths for your future. In this pandemic or corona crisis, aspirants should go with parallel career options, an entrepreneurship option, one where a career risk outs well. So that you don’t need to find employment but can work on a contract where pandemics are constantly recurring. Meaning, aspirants of any job should start planning now. When you put down your pen to paper, you will think clearly, identify your skills, prepare for uncertainty, and make better choices.
The private sector is the part of the economy that is run by individuals and companies for profit and is not state-controlled. Therefore, it encompasses all for-profit businesses that are not owned or operated by the government.
The longest-running assumption of our times is the plethora of jobs and wealth-creating opportunities in the private sector. That is until a crisis hit us. Many of us believed that those holding a government job or pension will lead a better life as government jobs provide security of income, the stability of role, and an employer that will not shut down. But in this pandemic or under the Corona crisis, every job has been affected either formal or informal sector. Thus, an only government job is not a great option for the future. Especially if you are in your 20s and have just begun your journey.
The Lure of IT/ ITES
Another assumption that is currently cracking up, is that if you get an entry into the IT/ITES sector, you are set up for life. But, after the pandemic, the situation has been changed. The current depressed market, and reducing margins are forcing big companies to pursue automation and eliminate lower skilled personnel. So, you have to upskill your level in this depressed market.
Frame of Mind
Your positive attitude matters most if you want to switch your career currently. Ignore all the negativity around, you need to remain positive and go ahead with your new career. Be flexible in evaluating options and do not hesitate to ask for guidance. Be emotionally strong, do the practice of helping others who need you in this pandemic.
Embrace the Change
Instead of struggling to retain the status quo, embrace the chaos. Now accept the new realities and the careers that are running properly during the pandemic. The following professionals are gaining value and job security – online sales, customer support, online education, digital marketing, etc. There is a change in working habits with most companies, which precludes remote functioning, contract roles, and commission-based compensation offers.
Control and Leverage
Due to the corona crisis, it has become easier for you to switch your careers and justify it both socially and professionally. When you will explain the reason for switching your career, the family is unlikely to object to a well-reasoned plan and a future employer will understand when you explain your layoff and decision to switch. Focus on what you can control and what you cannot. Learn new skills, read new books, and apply to multiple jobs, switch geographies industries, and control the use of your time.
In this corona, crisis prepare your personal budget and focus on staying healthy. Identify your technical and soft skills, figure out where these skills are valuable and plan to go ahead in your life with these skills. Prepare your resume, and dive into the job search process.
FRESH GRADUATE CHALLENGES UNDER THE CORONA CRISIS
If in 2020 you are graduating from college, your batch will have a challenging time to find their first jobs, unlike your immediate seniors. Like the 2000 and 2008-09 market crashes, unemployment levels three months after graduation will be higher for your cohort by up to 30%.
Job First, Choice Later
This pandemic has made a tough challenge for job seekers. So, it would be better to get into any job. In this case, salaries may be lower as you want and you may not find jobs in your preferred domain but, you should give priority on getting any job to gain work experience and shift domains once the market improves. You can also work through unpaid internships or in your family business.
After any major crisis, the job market always changed. But this time all jobs change in online, technology, and digital skills that enable workers to contribute remotely. Whatever your line of education, you must expertise and comfortable with digital tools in your field of work.
Eg. The tally for a commerce graduate.
Under the corona crisis, the next degree is a great option is to acquire additional certification or degrees and postpone your entry into the job market. Not only are you better equipped but also the market circumstances will change. So, pursue that Masters’s or Ph.D. degree right now instead of waiting for a year or two.
Online education however less valuable than a full-time course. But online education is your final option in this pandemic. Therefore, you have to join online classes, learn more, and get the certification. Know that Education-Technology has become popular in the crisis with lots of low cost or free options. Now, you will be able to differentiate yourself from your competitors in your next job interview.
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