Long-term unemployment is generally defined as being unemployed for 6 months or more. No one ever intends to find themselves in that category, but it happens. It happens even to smart, experienced people. Brilliant people. I know because I've worked them and gotten them out of their unemployment. Job searching is a skill that has to be learned and it's certainly not taught in schools.

Here are several tips that will help you get off of the unemployment carousel...

Update your skills. Having out of date skills will kill your job search, especially if you are in technology, but even if you aren't. While you are not working, that is the BEST time to take classes, earn certifications, and so on. Not only will you get out of the house and be more productive, you might even meet new people and learn a new trick or two. Add these certifications or training courses to your resume and include the year so that the reader knows that they are recent.

Focus on personal connections. Personal connections and referrals are beneficial for anyone in a search but they are non-negotiable for someone who is unemployed. Having someone inside the company vouch for you and support you through the application process will help you to overcome the unemployment factor. Think you don't have connections? You do. Everyone knows people. The average person has 338 Facebook friends. So, there you go. Make it an intentional part of your strategy to seek employment at companies where your connections work. LinkedIn makes this pretty easy to do with its feature, "Companies In Your Network." Contact me for more help on how to use this feature and similar ones provided by LinkedIn.

Get professional help. The unemployed are often the least likely to invest in career coaching due to the investment involved. Ironically though, they are the ones who stand to benefit the most. Many clients think that with no income, how can they afford to hire a coach? But the reality is, with no income, how can you afford not to? When you consider the amount of money that you are losing each month by not being employed, the investment makes complete sense.  Research has shown time after time that investing in a coach will generate anywhere from a $4 to $8 return for every dollar spent (Center For Executive Coaching). Having someone with hiring experience to partner with you and guide you through your search could be exactly what is missing.

Only 23% of my client base is unemployed. I truly wish that I could serve more of the unemployed, but I know that the investment stops them. To remedy this, I offer generous payment plans that are almost unheard of in my line of work. Many who do what I do, don't allow payments at all. If you have been unemployed for too long, contact me. We'll do a free 15-minute discovery call to diagnose what's not working and find out if we're a good match.
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