As an almost thirty-year hospitality veteran, my heart is breaking for our industry. I’ve seen thousands of people laid off and personally heard from hundreds who are reeling from the reality of being out of work. Each time I see a new LinkedIn post which starts with “today it’s official, or “it’s with deep sadness” I cringe because I know what’s coming and it’s another valued hospitality professional looking for work.
I also cringe because I know what’s coming and it’s the same message being shared all over social media. As a career coach and expert on persuasion, I want to help because I know that these posts won’t see traction and probably aren’t getting the response they truly need. The message is self-sabotage and at the risk of appearing unsympathetic, it’s time for some tough love. If you’ve read this far I encourage you to keep reading and share these tips with your friends and colleagues as they are coming from a place of support, not judgement.
Stop using the term redundant. “My job has been made redundant; I’ve become redundant”. No. You are not redundant. You are a highly skilled and valuable associate. Your position has been eliminated due to an unprecedented global pandemic. Period. This has nothing to do with you and by making it about you or your position, you’re unintentionally planting seeds of doubt. In fact, there’s really no need to explain why you’re looking for work as everyone knows what’s happening. Instead use this valuable posting space and the hundreds of views you’ll get to talk about why you’d be an asset to a new company or another industry.
Which brings us to why you’d be an asset to a new company or another industry. I’ve seen many posts which state that people are “open to new opportunities”. What kind of opportunities? Are you ready to step out of hospitality? Do you want to stay in the field you are in? What’s your passion and how would this benefit my organization? What unique or powerful skills do you have which translate to another industry? And how? What’s your most proud career moment and how has this made you better at work? Help me to help you. You need to lay this out for the reader so it’s easy for them to make the connection.
Connect with me – and tell me why. I’ve had over fifty new connection requests in the past three days. I know what’s driving this and I want to help. Connecting with me and hoping that I take the time to review your profile, think of a job that’s a fit, reach out to you and make an introduction just isn’t realistic. Instead, send a note with the connection request and don’t’ be afraid to be direct. “Hi Nancy, we know some of the same people and I thought you might be able to help me find my dream job doing XYZ for a company like 123”. Or, “Hi Nancy, I see we have a few common connections and would greatly appreciate you helping me to expand my network as I’m looking for a ___ role in the ____ industry”. People want to help. You just have to tell them specifically how they can support you to make it easy for them to take action.
In summary, use your network and the thousands of eyeballs on your post to persuasively communicate your value. You can do this by following these simple steps when you’re posting as well as when you’re connecting. Add a note to your connection requests highlighting your key skills (and why they matter), specifically ask for help in expanding your network and highlight which of your skills will transfer and how.
Ready to restart? My mission is quite simple. I aim to empower, educate and inspire. I believe in stepping into your strengths, recognizing the true value of your talent and owning your authenticity to communicate with certainty, clarity and confidence. This is how you truly thrive at work. When you’re ready, I’m ready.