Today’s Women- Challenges Encountered in Restarting Work and Career

Women of this present generation have come to realize, the importance of working and developing a career for themselves. Gone are the days when women were seen to be a full housewife – taking care of the home, the husband and the children, these could be done alongside working or developing a career.

Research also shows that there are about approximately 70% to 80% of women who abandoned their career due to reasons like marriage, childbirth, family, societal norms, finding it difficult to juggle childcare with a career, company culture, work-life balance, not being considered for promotion or senior promotion, lack of advancement in the company and others and they literally want to restart or rebuild their career maybe because they are widowed, children all grown up or having the urge to make an impact in the society.
With this, a question pops out, can a woman restart her career? What do you think the answer will be? Of course, it is a YES. According to Ruby McGregor – Smith, the chair of the Women’s Business Council (2013) said, “Women should not just be trying to fit into the economy but Be Shaping It”. Everyone struggled at first and the best advice for exhausted parents tempted to give up work is to try going part-time if you can and keep your options open. Alexa Kerr said, ‘’women who leave their career to have children should not expect to get back into the workforce at a similar level’’. Everyone should accept that things will not remain the same.

Restarting your career and getting back to work is easy, but not without some challenges, I termed it ‘Return to Work Syndrome’ which is faced with fear, worry, anxiety, shame, confidence loss when returning to work after a prolonged absence. This syndrome is not limited to childbirth and motherhood absence only, it also applies to absence from a job loss, chronic illness or family medical leave, extended bereavement and a change of personal or professional direction and others. Below are some of the CHALLENGES and how we can overcome them.

This transition from a career break and back to the workforce could be intense, but first find out if your skills and interests have changed, the break is an opportunity to reflect if you were on the right career path. Lack of confidence is also a challenge, this can be worked on in various ways, which will be discussed in this article. Your skills may be outdated; work on your skills and update them, especially if you were in a technical team or medical field. Employees may not employ you when they find out in your resume that you had a gap of 2 years or more, you may be asked during the interview, the reason for the break and you could tell them you actually took a career break but you are excited in going back to work, tell them what you can do or how you can help them.

Submitting your CVs or going for interviews may not get you the required job or career, this is where networking comes in, use your network on social media or from your contacts or through words of mouth and find a person that can vouch for you at a target company. Start seeing potential connections everywhere.

The trick for getting back to work is self-confidence and selling yourself, for these were the key tricks, but women who had been at home for a long period of time are likely to have lost these qualities. The steps in boosting your self-esteem and confidence and opportunities available will be discussed in detail in the next edition of the e-magazine.

-Cleopatra Onyemaobichukwu N.

About the Author: A Guidance Counselor with a private practice in Educational and Organizational sector. A freelance writer. Her writing interests include Health, Education and Relationship.

This article is sponsored by  Edumilestones: Auctus Infometrics Pvt. Ltd. (Edumilestones website) is an India, (Bangalore) based company. They provide a premium career assessment platform and premium career counselling certification courses named Certified Career Analyst (CCA) and International Career Analyst (ICA) to over 1400+ professionals across 80 locations in India and abroad for over 10 years. They are official members of APCDA and IAAP international organizations. Their team consists of qualified and experienced top experts from psychology, education, design and IT, investing in extensive research and development.

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