You have some gaps in your career history. You didn’t think they were a big deal – until you started looking for jobs in Miami. Now, you’re finding out that for many recruiters and hiring managers, these can serve as a warning sign about recruiting you, especially if you don’t explain and position them right.
To help you do that, here’s how to talk about gaps and re-focus attention on your strengths and best qualities instead.
Don’t ever badmouth a past employer.
If you got laid off or fired, you might be tempted to speak negatively about the company or your boss. Don’t do it. It will only reflect poorly on you, even if you were treated unfairly.
Rather, focus on the positive and say something like: “The company needed to pivot and restructure and unfortunately, my position was eliminated due to shorter tenure. However, I left on good terms and am happy to offer you references from there.”
Be upfront about what you were doing during your time off.
When you have longer gaps, whether due to taking time off to care for children or a sick relative or simply traveling around, it’s important to be honest about it. Then talk about how it’s contributed to your personal and professional development.
For instance, if you were a stay-at-home parent for a number of years, you can state that: “During my time caring for my family, I was able to stay-up-to-date with my career skills thanks to online continuing education classes. Now I’m ready to return to the workforce and looking forward to joining a team where I can put them to use.”
Don’t ever lie or exaggerate.
There will be times where you’re not necessarily learning and growing during your career gap. For example, if you were facing health problems and couldn’t work for an extended period of time, employers might question whether or not you’d be able to perform the job.
One way to overcome this is by stating something like: “I had to take time off due to a health issue, which was difficult. However, I’m happy to report I’m fully recovered and ready to refocus my career, making a contribution as a part of your team.”
Writing a great resume is hard enough under ideal circumstances. Doing so when you have gaps is an uphill climb. However, follow the tips above and you can take the first step in ensuring those issues in your career history don’t sabotage your efforts to find a new job.
Want professional help with the process?
Call Future Force Personnel! We can give you the feedback and advice you need on writing the most persuasive resume possible. We can also help with interview preparation, finding job leads, and ultimately securing the right-fit opportunity for your career goals and experience. Contact us today now or browse our available jobs.