The Longer You’re Out of Work, The Harder It Gets

I started in the search business in 1972 and it didn’t take long for me to notice a few simple yet understandable behaviors among employers.

They include:

The longer someone is looking for work, the fewer choices they have. Companies start to look at your resume and believe that others have interviewed you and found your skills lacking, so why should they waste their time meeting you?

The longer that someone is out of work the less leverage someone has come salary negotiations. Firms often adopt the attitude of giving you two choices when they make an offer — take it or leave it. They act from the belief that you don’t have many choices (and they are probably right) so they don’t feel a great need to extend themselves.

If you’ve been out of work in your field for a year or longer, it will be hard (or impossible) to re-enter at the same level … if at all!

For those of you whose resumes indicate that you worked for your last employer until almost a year previously, I encourage you to hustle during the next few months to find something – anything — even if it means profound compromise (to you).

Once you have been out of work for a year, your choices will become microscopic and the likelihood of your returning to your career as you’ve known it, unlikely.(Think of what offer you would take if you were still unemployed a six months from now. Take that offer today).


© The Big Game Hunter, Inc. Asheville, NC  2008, 2016



Jeff Altman, The Big Game Hunter has been a coach and recruiter for what seems like one hundred years.

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