Career Transition Through The Hard Times

by Tom O'Neil - As almost all New Zealand companies have seen income fall away over the last few weeks, many people are now facing the prospect of being made redundant.  This is a terrifying idea for almost everybody, so what can we do as Christian men to ensure we are moving forward, both spiritually and career wise?

Trust God to get you through

Firstly we need to give this situation an eternal perspective.  The Bible has given us so many promises in regards to His provision and protection over us.  Psalm 91 is a chapter I have come back to recently.  Verse 9 and 10 state “If you say, ‘The Lord is my refuge,’ and you make the Most High your dwelling, no harm will overtake you, no disaster will come near your tent.” 

Other great scriptures to make top of mind at the moment include:

Isaiah 43:2 - "When you go through deep waters, I will be with you."

Psalm 37:5 - "Commit your way to the Lord. Trust in Him, and He will act."

Isaiah 41:10 - "Don't be afraid, for I am with you. Don't be discouraged, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you. I will hold you up with my victorious right hand."

2 Corinthians 1:3-4 – “Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God.”


I’ve been made redundant!  What should I do now?

Being made redundant is horrible at the best of times, however it’s a lot worse at present in terms of stress and concern. Therefore it’s vital to:

  1. Give it to God – Seek out His peace, joy, counsel and wisdom through prayer, reading His word and seeking wise advice.
  2. Not panic – Don’t freak out and try and be rational about what you are facing. We will all get through this in the end, however it is now a good time to re-do your budget, and put your hand up for government support, mortgage relief etc.
  3. Get your CV looking great – Make sure you sell your achievements in your CV and tailor it to the role you are seeking. ‘Mirroring’ what the employer is after, presents you as a ‘solution’ to their ‘problem’. Remember your CV is your ‘brochure’, so it should make you stand out in the marketplace.
  4. Make your LinkedIn profile look great too – Opportunity can come in a wide range of ways. One of these is by having a great LinkedIn profile that looks good to a potential employer.
  5. Have a positive mindset – Someone out there wants to employ you. It’s just a matter of being seen and getting your CV front of them.
  6. Get started – Apply for roles via the job vacancy websites you feel match your skills. After you have done this, then hit the ‘hidden’ job market (more on this next), and start to reach out to decision makers via LinkedIn etc.

Is now a good time to job hunt?

Obviously job openings have reduced and many interviews that were about to take place have been postponed or cancelled.  However if you suddenly find yourself without a job, personally I think any time is a good time to get your CV in front of prospective employers by hitting the ‘hidden job market’.

It is estimated that only 25 percent of vacant jobs are advertised, however you can find out about these ‘hidden’ job openings by reaching out to decision makers directly via the telephone or email. Make a list of key companies you would like to work for and approach them directly. Or take your pick of the top firms in your field of interest and contact them. This approach to job-hunting is called ‘cold calling’ and it puts candidates in the driving seat.

I recently had a person email me out of the blue in regards to any job openings we had available.  I had three days earlier accepted the resignation of one of my team members, but had not got to the point of looking for anyone, so this person got an interview.  Within one day I had enough information to make them a formal job offer and they started a week later.

The only caveat to this is to remember that managers are also under a large amount of stress at present, so always approach people with a high degree of respect and sensitivity.


Should I step down to a lower role in the meantime?

Obviously no one wants to do a role that is beneath their skills and background.  However for many of us, we may need to become comfortable with a ‘lesser’ temporary role during the Covid19 crisis.  When I visited Norfolk Island many years ago on a cruise, it amazed me that normal business shut down and the entire population of the island focused on tourism for the day.  Bank managers sold tea towels and sales reps made coffee, all to capture the tourist dollar.  In some ways, this is a bit like what is happening here in NZ at the moment.  Some of us may need to step down temporarily in regards to responsibility and salary, returning to their normal ‘career role’ when this is all a memory.


Will things get better?

Yes!  The economy was strong and going well, up until Covid19 derailed everything.  Once we are all out and about, I am confident the economy will quickly re-start allowing a positive time for job hunting and our economy.

Again the Lord is our Protector, so seek Him at all stages of this journey and ask Him to lift you and your family up at this time.


Practical Support

I hope you gain some really good information from the above and if you need any professional, CV LinkedIn or career coaching support, email me [here]. I can also give your CV a free assessment, so email it to me and we can talk.

God bless and stay safe.

Tom O’Neil, Managing Director of CV.CO.NZ 

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