Vol. 22 • Issue 6
• Page 15
In a sour economy, job seekers may be tempted to base career decisions on staying financially afloat as opposed to finding the career that best fulfills their goals. Should you ditch your dreams of finding a rewarding career in tough times? Not necessarily, say recruiters.
"Of course, we all need to support ourselves and we have mortgages and bills to pay, but looking for your next employment opportunity is really about looking for something you can be passionate about and get connected with, no matter the state of the economy," said Jill Schwieters, executive vice president and founder of Pinstripe Healthcare, a human resource and recruitment process outsourcing firm based in Brookfield, WI.
Compromising, Not Settling
Schwieters suggests taking the time to identify the type of work you really enjoy, conduct research online and network with peers to locate facilities of interest. That's not to say you should take a disinteresting job or join a company you're not impressed with, Schwieters stressed. "Because it's easier to do a great job with something you love and can be passionate about," she said. "So, from a job seeker's perspective, I believe you've got to focus on always taking a job that you know you want." She urges prospective candidates to understand the difference between being flexible and being desperate. "Being flexible means getting work experience and building your résumé with different competencies and experiences that make you a more attractive and competent worker over time," Schwieters said.
Sacrifices To Make
There are certain compromises to consider, one being pay, said Tim McGrath, president of Health and Science Center Inc., a recruitment agency based in Lima, PA. "If somebody's out of work and their severance is coming to an end or they're dipping into their savings, it's time to consider a different wage bracket," he said. Consider the opportunity, the facility reputation and potential career path, in addition to the salary.
"We need to readjust our expectations," added Schwieters. "If you're considering a job you think you'll love and the organization is somewhere you really want to work, you should ask, 'can I make this work?'"
She pointed out ways to bring in extra money by seeking per diem work as well. "Particularly in healthcare, you have the opportunity to pick up per diem or pool shifts," she said. "Most organizations are looking for variable staff to help with volume fluctuations. It's easier to build relationships within these organizations, learn more about the company and be in tune to what may become available in the future. And it gives you a safety net if you're concerned about your current employer."
-Joe Darrah is on staff at ADVANCE.