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How to 'COVID-19 proof' your career - All Woman - Jamaica Observer
All Woman

How to 'COVID-19 proof' your career


WITH job losses and pay cuts increasing in light of the global economic downturn caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, management strategist, facilitator and organisation coach Dr Charlene Ashley of Consultancy Inc has reminded jobseekers and people within the workforce of strategies to propel their careers forward despite the challenges posed by the pandemic.

Speaking recently at the 'Empower Your Future Today' workshop, Dr Ashley, a seasoned motivator and career coach, advised attendees of how to take charge of their careers and strive for excellence along their professional journey.

With a doctoral award from the International School of Management, France, and numerous years of experience working in the private and public sectors locally and internationally, Dr Ashley reached for her personal experiences to motivate the audience to portray themselves as the best candidates when applying for a job, especially during this period of uncertainty.

She also used anecdotal tales in encouraging jobseekers to take personal responsibility for their actions and believe in themselves. Dr Ashley advised the workshop attendees to block limiting beliefs from their mindsets and always work towards realising their passions as foundations for success.

The experienced career coach guided the jobseekers with the below tips to help them 'COVID-19 proof' their careers:

Be deliberate – Success in any field is a result of deliberate action. In order to secure your career in a pandemic you must be able to have tunnel vision. Whether you are just starting out or if you're already in the midst of a job switch, study the market, put a plan in place, and take massive steps to make it happen.

“This means fine-tuning your curriculum vitae, talking to those who are in the job that you desire. It also includes reaching out via networking sites such as LinkedIn and Twitter to connect with others and opportunities,” she said.

Be honest – In order to achieve success, you need to be honest with yourself. Accept your weaknesses and celebrate your strengths, always appreciating that your unique abilities make you different. If you find that you are skilled in a particular area, use those abilities and contributions to shine. Unleash that power with unlimited potential.

Be flexible – Currently, more will be required of you; however, management of your time, talents and energy will be key. The truth is the field you started out in is not where you will stay forever; get comfortable with the idea of seeking job prospects outside of your comfort zone; be adaptable to new learnings. Online classes, free tools in digital marketing and more can be used to upskill your current skillset to ensure that you are more marketable.

Embrace obstacles – In every challenge there lies an opportunity for greatness. It all depends on your perspective. As you shift towards a mindset of success, look for rewards. Don't run from the problems, but towards it, being solutions focused. Don't compare yourself, but challenge yourself, affirming positive thoughts always.

Focus on attitude – Nothing changes unless you change. Your mindset must shift. Times are hard, but the manner in which you accomplish tasks, simple and complex, highlights a side of you that is informative to an employer. Always focus on maintaining the right attitude that will position you in the best possible light. Even if the unthinkable of being 'let go' from your job happens, focus on the right attitude to guide you through the period. Work out all scenarios in your head to be prepared.

Be humble – Whether you are in your dream job, searching for same, or simply seeking to keep the current one, humility is key; take nothing personal — the success of your current job, the market conditions, possible job loss. Be humble about all that happens and allow it mould you into the best version of yourself that you could ever be.

Give yourself time – Like all things, growth and success take time. Some may have expected a raise, a promotion or planned for other great things in the year many called “20 plenty”, but understand that these setbacks are part of the journey; give yourself time to mature into the person you see achieving all your goals and slowly yet surely things will happen.

Dr Ashley encouraged jobseekers to remain tenacious in their efforts and remain true to themselves in their quest for achieving success and realising their career goals.



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