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How To Explain Career Transitions And Employment Gaps

In my latest job search advice piece for Work Reimagined, I give tips on how to talk about career transitions and employment gaps:

There are many positive situations that require leaving a job or taking time off. One of my clients left a long-time employer because his spouse got the role of a lifetime in another city. Another was offered the chance to leapfrog from a management position at a large company to the top spot at a start-up. Several of my clients have taken years off for family reasons.

Even when it’s good news, you need to explain the gaps and transitions in your resume in any interview, and do so in a way that puts you in the most positive light. A prospective employer wants to know that you’re thoughtful about your career choices. From the employer’s point of view, my relocating client could be seen as treating his career as secondary. The start-up client could sound uncommitted to his original industry and to big corporations, making it harder to jump back in someday.  A gap of any kind might signal lack of career commitment. The same event can be interpreted either well or poorly. To make sure it’s the former, frame your explanation this way:

Read my 3 tips for job seekers in my latest blog for Work Reimagined: How To Explain A Hole In Your Resume.