In our new blog segment, we’re interviewing some of our past Career Transition program participants to learn more about how they approached their job search and the services and supports they received from Cenera throughout their Career Transition process.
Today we chat with Lance V., who participated in our Career Transition program in 2021.
Hi Lance! What, in your opinion, is the hardest part of a career transition?
Dealing with the new reality I was facing. In my case, my job was relocated to a different city, but I wasn’t willing to move. So, the first step was dealing with the surprise of it all. You need time to process that before being able to start a job search. I had to determine what I wanted to do next, did I want to stay in the same industry or look elsewhere, etc. So, when I started working with Cenera, I’d had some time to process those thoughts and was ready to get started.
The other hardest part – how to find a job in 2021!
It’s not classified ads and handing out resumes anymore. It’s a new world in terms of job hunting, and that’s where Cenera was really helpful in directing me where to go when it comes to finding a job in a digital world.
What were your expectations when you first began Career Transition services with Cenera?
I’d never had career support services before, so I wasn’t totally sure what to expect. What I anticipated was for it to be fairly basic; we’d chat about what I wanted to do, work on my resume, and that would be it. But it was actually so much more than that. Yes, the resume was part of it, but more than that, they offered some really good advice about the actual process of a job search in today’s day and age. My coach was great about giving some really honest advice on what it actually takes to land a job right now. The high-quality direction absolutely exceeded my expectations.
What resources or support that you received from the Career Transition team stood out the most for you?
The Career Coach I had! My coach was brilliant. To start, we had one-on-one meetings, and she took me through Cenera’s ‘module approach,’ which is almost like being handed a menu at Earls; you get to choose which ‘courses’ you like based on your needs and interests and all are high quality. I used the resume module and got my resume dialed in, and I took the course on how to use LinkedIn.
They even had a course on starting your own business, which at first I didn’t think I would be interested in, but [my Coach] encouraged me to give it a try – and it was fantastic. It’s probably the most I’ve learned from any course since University. Because of this course, I was even able to start doing some consulting on the side as I looked for a new role, and this was a perfect balance for me because it allowed me to stay current in the field and earn some income as I searched for a job.
[My Coach] also encouraged me to take part in the Cenera networking program. What was most valuable for me here is that she taught me how to network properly. The key is being specific about what you’re asking for, so you can get to that tertiary level of a network and ask the right questions to get connected to people who can put you in touch with the next lead. Everything was done virtually, which I found really easy and accessible.
People often find networking intimidating, but it’s so important for finding a job. I didn’t know how to network until Cenera taught me to network.
What was the impact of having support from Cenera during your career transition? How do you think things might have been different if you hadn’t received this support?
It would have looked very different. I would have done old-school networking with direct connections – networking with the same people I already know. I would have applied for jobs online that popped up, hounded recruiters and hoped the right thing came my way. So, in my opinion, Cenera was a game-changer for me. In a COVID environment and a tough job market, they gave me the tools, the motivation and the confidence to find my next role. I think it would have taken me much longer to find a job if I hadn’t had their support.
What advice would you give someone facing a career transition?
The advice I would give them;
-Go in open-minded.
-Trust your coach; they have your best interests in mind.
-Be resilient, it’s not easy or fun, and you have to stick with it. Lick your wounds when you face rejection.
-Learn how to network properly and…network, network, network!
Thank you so much, Lance, for sharing your experience with us!
Job loss can be one of the most challenging things we experience in life. If your business is looking to support employees with their Career Transition, our customizable, comprehensive approach will help exiting employees navigate what comes next with empathy, integrity and respect.
If your organization is considering offering Career Transition support, Cenera is here to help. Reach out to us today to learn more.
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