Explaining Gaps in Career
One of the most nightmare and haunting question that a candidate can face in a Job Interview is about the Gaps in his/her career. One of the most convincing and golden answer to this question is to tell the interviewer the truth and this is correct as well up-to certain extent but there are some circumstances in life where telling the truth may be too straight forward and can only lead to disasters. For Example, If suppose a person has failed an examination or a person was not able to find a suitable job for a long time due to his/her hard luck, recession or may be due to desire to get a job which suits his/her interest and skill. So in these circumstances telling the truth would make an adverse impression on the employer which might lead to disqualification of candidature of the person. So In my honest opinion One should be very much prepared to answer this daunting question in an articulate manner.
Here are few suggestions to overcome this difficult Question:
1. Being selective (taking time to find the "right" story and not just jumping at the first offer you get).
2. Relocating (taking time to relocate family due to a partner's need to move for their career).
3. Caring for family (taking time off to care full-time for a loved one).
4. Medical issue (taking time off to recover from a pregnancy, serious injury or illness).
5. Personal goals (taking time to climb Mt. Everest, go on an African safari, visit family overseas).
6. Educational goals (taking time off to attend full time classes or an important certification program).
7. Taking Relevant Courses to Upgrade Oneself (This shows you are an ambitious individual who is always looking to improve their skill set).
8. Explain the additional effort you have put on to learn new things when you were not employed.
9. Even Works like Workshops, Freelancing, Consulting and Volunteering can be shown as experience.
10. In case you get unemployed due to downsizing ie., Work force Contraction you can explain the reason of downsizing along with recommendation from your supervisor which will boost your competence level. Incorporate these with your LinkedIn profile when feasible.
11. It will be more difficult to make a strong case if you were fired due to performance issues. If you are now targeting a job which requires different skills or competencies then you might emphasize how your strengths are better suited for the job at hand.
12. Last But Not the least if you are for years in workforce then you can give relevant number of years and can omit the gaps in month by mentioning the years. Using just years achieves two things:
- It makes it easier for the reader to quickly ballpark the length of time you stayed at each job.
- It conceals gaps that happened within a span of two calendar years.