The typical case was the 61-year-old lawyer laid off last year. She "enjoyed" unemployment.
But, because she wasn't working her skills atrophied. And not only the legal ones.
In addition, she was off her game in how to interview.
After unemployment and savings ran out, she came to me for coaching. She couldn't find a job in her field.
I recommended a "survival job." Hers was in loss prevention, at $11.50 an hour. Within three months she landed an offer in a field associated with law: debt collection.
There is that old adage: Nothing gets you a job like a job. There are many reasons why that's on the money.
After all, work is special context in human activities. Most have to be "socialized" about the rules and how to conform to them.
That's exactly why smart parents had pushed their offspring to get and hold part-time jobs, any kind. Currently, only about one-third of teenagers work. Consequently, that generation could be at a disadvantage in the world of work.
Another pro in favor of survival jobs is the obvious fact that working brings in income and often even benefits such as medical coverage. Okay, that kind of compensation package might be peanuts, compared to previous earnings.
But money is money. Having even a little of it lowers the overall level of angst when unemployed. Those demons which target the souls of displaced seasoned professionals are blocked from entrance. Here is a book, free to download, on those monsters of the mind.
A third reason for the aging to make it their business to apply for survival jobs is that it expands horizons.
That lawyer, for example, noticed she excelled at retail security. She also looked forward to coming in for her shift. That was noticed by higher-ups and she was offered a position in supervision.
The ah-ah moment came: She got it that she could play in other kinds of sandboxes in order to not only make a living but not hate her job. The last four years practicing law per se had been utter drudgery.
A fourth reason is that there is no hole in the resume. Clever professionals find the right language to describe their survival jobs to future employers.
That lawyer referred to hers as "physical security." Actually the job description covered the same responsibilities as would a middle-management position in headquarters protecting corporate property and lives.
A former journalist listed his as "marketing and sales." He was a greeter at a large retailer. You bet, he learned plenty about strategic store layout, what items are returned most often, and the soft side of merchandising.
Embarrassment being spotted in low-paid work? If that's an issue there are behind-the-scenes jobs at call centers or customer service full-time positions which can be carried out on a PC at home.
Contact Jane Genova firstname.lastname@example.org.