Job hunting in the age of pandemics and protests
- How’s the overall job climate right now? Who’s hiring and who’s not?
- How are the current outbreaks of violence affecting job hunting?
- What if someone gets arrested because of his/her involvement in a protest? Does this hurt future employment?
- How does a person’s online presence affect a job search?
- Do you have any advice on how to clean up a person’s online profile?
- What are your top 3 suggestions for finding a job right now?
We’re still social distancing, we’re still in the middle of a global pandemic, and there are now protests across the country — and the world — for justice reform sparked by the death of George Floyd. There’s a lot going on at the moment. Finding a new job is far from easy, but add these factors into the mix and it can be downright #stressful for someone unemployed and searching for work.
We chatted with Patricia Hunt Sinacole, CEO and Founder of the HR consulting firm First Beacon Group. Patricia is the “Job Doc” columnist in the Careers section of the Boston Globe, and she gave us her thoughts on how to best proceed in job searches during this period of time.
How’s the overall job climate right now? Who’s hiring and who’s not?
It depends on the industry and location. The hospitality, travel, and tourism markets have been seriously impacted by the pandemic. And, finding work in New York City is going to be different than finding work in a small town in Idaho. Certain industries are definitely booming — medical technology for one. Grocery stores and Amazon are more examples. But retail stores that you’d find in a mall like Macy’s are struggling.
How are the current outbreaks of violence affecting job hunting?
Many employers are still using video-based calls for interviews to help with social distancing. To best prepare, know how to use technology/apps like Zoom or WebEx. And be aware, some employers may delay opening for business because of concerns of violence.
What if someone gets arrested because of his/her involvement in a protest? Does this hurt future employment?
Getting arrested is usually not an issue — arrest is not a conviction. However, if someone is convicted of assault and battery — this could be different.
How does a person’s online presence affect a job search?
Social media is helpful for networking and finding work. Employers check social media accounts all the time. Lock down your profiles and keep them private — or only post what you would show your mother!
Do you have any advice on how to clean up a person’s online profile?
Focus on posting positive pictures, stories, and events to Facebook or other social media platforms. This strategy helps bury the older posts in timelines.
What are your top 3 suggestions for finding a job right now?
Always keep your resume or online work profile current — you should never let it get “stale.”
Network and reach out to your contacts — old roommates, former coworkers, family, and friends. Let them know you’re looking for new opportunities.
Never say “no” to an introduction. Even if it doesn’t seem like the ideal role. Be flexible — the role might not be forever, but it might be a reasonable role for right now.
Patricia Hunt Sinacole is the CEO and Founder of First Beacon Group LLC.
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