Riding The Wave of Market Cycles – How to Rebound From a Layoff In The Construction Industry
It’s a fact of life for an A/E/C professional: the market cycles. One quarter your team is working 60-70 hours a week, hair on fire. The next, everyone is scraping for billable hours. That’s when layoffs happen.
If you’ve been a victim of that ominous visit to the HR director, you might feel as if your career is irreparably damaged. The opposite is true! A layoff may be a catalyst to a great opportunity. Here are some tips to help you successfully rebound from a layoff:
Take a breath – It’s not unusual for senior and executive level professionals to fall victim to layoffs. It’s not necessarily a commentary on your abilities. Don’t panic! Opportunities exist, even in the tightest of markets. At your level, you can often make your own opportunity.
Brush up your resume – Make sure your experience is represented completely and accurately. Highlight the major programs you’ve managed, and the problems you’ve solved. Focus on delivery and budgets met. Get references from owners who are satisfied with your work. Caveat: Don’t embellish! The A/E/C community is small and everyone knows the truth.
Market yourself – You know what projects are coming up in your area of expertise. Meet with the owners and make sure they have a favorable opinion of you. Find out which firms are positioning. Make sure they get your tailored resume. Put yourself forward as the program/project manager that the owners want to see on an org chart.
Use your network – This is one of the benefits of a strong network. Someone knows someone who needs a senior/executive level professional. Make sure that everyone knows that you’re in the market for a new opportunity. Bonus tip: Never, ever air your previous employer’s dirty laundry to your network! You will be forever tainted as an unreliable gossip, and you’ll show yourself as untrustworthy.
Don’t forget Social Media – LinkedIn is often used as a job/employee search tool. Make sure you update your profiles to reflect your availability and interest in new professional adventures. Use the media to your advantage by posting articles that exhibit your professional chops.
Brush up on your skills – Many professional organizations offer training and certification programs. Take this time to add to your qualifications. Go outside the box and stretch your boundaries.
Check Job Banks – These same organizations often have robust job banks. Check the Engineering News Record job postings as well. There are often opportunities for senior and executive level professionals all over the country. Again, think outside the box. Many states have amazing programs and need your level of expertise.
Michael DeSafey is a leading executive recruiter for professionals in the construction, engineering and environmental industries. He is currently the President of Webuild Staffing www.webuildstaffing.com . To learn more about Michael or to follow his blog please visit www.michaeldesafey.com