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When In-Between: Practical Ways to Re-Engage

By Ken Chen

Are you one of the thousands of people affected by massive layoffs in the tech industry? Or are you a consultant that has just completed a project and you're not sure what you'll be working on next? Try these practical tips to re-engage and put yourself back in the job market.

1. Do an outbound marketing campaign for yourself.

Using email and social media, announce your availability. For example, "I'm available to take on projects right now. If you or someone you know is looking, let me know." On LinkedIn, you may add an #OpenToWork graphic on your profile picture and specify what you're looking for, such as job titles, geographic locations, on-site or remote, or start date.

2. Grab some cups o' joe.

Email a few people in your network with the goal being to get coffee meetings. Find out what they're up to and let them know you're looking for new projects.

3. Do some LinkedIn research.

Research companies you want to work with on LinkedIn to see what job openings are available, then use your network to try and get your resume to the right person (or, you can try applying directly).

4. Work on your personal branding.

Here are some things you can do to update your personal brand:

  • Create a personal brand statement to explain what you do and why you are unique in your field
  • Learn a new skill or research a new industry you'd like to get into
  • Polish your resume and LinkedIn profile
  • Request recommendations on LinkedIn
  • Show off your expertise by writing blogs, launching a podcast, or shooting a series of videos

5. See what people think about you.

It's a good time to focus on self-improvement. Collect feedback from your former clients and peers -- perhaps you'll find something productive to work on, or better yet, accentuate the positive feedback going forward.

6. Build up your network on LinkedIn.

Connect with people you used to work with, people you're currently working with, sync your contacts from your email, connect with alums from your alma mater, revisit your "Invitations to Connect" and use the "People You May Know" feature.

7. Attend events to explore areas of growth and learning.

There are plenty of opportunities online or in your local area to learn new hobbies, meet new people, and check out a hot industry.

8. Go see the friends and family that you may have neglected and rekindle those relationships.

Aren't these statements, "I wish I'd stayed in touch with my friends" and "I worked too much at the expense of my family" some of the top lifetime regrets?

9. Have fun and be open to the world and its possibilities.

Need I say more?

If it's the end of the road with your last job or project, it's fair to say you should consider (deserve) taking time to recharge and reconnect instead of re-engaging. However, finding the next work opportunity may take some time, so start by networking and updating your personal brand. Now, it's your turn: what has worked for you to secure your next gig?

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About Ken Chen

Ken Chen is San Francisco-based online marketing consultant and owner of EM Marketing. EM Marketing specializes in marketing strategy, product launches, customer acquisition, and mobile & social marketing.

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