Friday, August 14, 2020

Recent College Graduates - The Keep It Moving Strategy

As Smart Moms, we are deeply concerned about our children and how they will survive and make a living in a world that has come to a grinding stop. The job market is dreary.   The June Bureau of Labor Statistics's Economic Release Report stated that 1 out 5  in their early 20's was jobless.  As moms, we are watching our young people at home struggling with motivation, establishing next steps, and how to make the best of a tough situation.  

Most moms are not career coaches, but you do have experience LANDING your 1st job, and you DO understand the importance of skills and having confidence in using these skills. I hope this blog post will empower you to help your children Keep It Moving until things turn around.  

As mothers, we have the wisdom to know that the Pandemic and recession will pass. It is our job as mothers to help our young people embrace this truth and do what they can. I believe our young people can engage in activities that will make them more appealing to employers when the job market turns around.  

Here are some steps to help your young people Keep It Moving:

1.   Encourage our young people to make a list of the skills they are secure in and ones that need work.  Chime in and give them some gentle suggestions. Help them see how their dream job will require proficiency with these skills, and now is the time to work on them. Visit to identify skills based on a job title or keyword.  

2.   Help our young people identify a class, internship, externship, part-time, or volunteer job that will give them confidence in secondary skills.  Some of these skills could be Problem-Solving, Teamwork/Collaboration, Professionalism/Work Ethics, and Oral and Written Communication. Be open to using your network to create a connection for them. 

3. Please encourage our young people to be gentle and patient with themselves when things don't work out. Thoughtfully remind them to Keep It Moving. Our world is strange now, but setting realistic goals, having action steps, and following timelines will win the race.   


Here is a scenario to help you think through your support strategy: 

Maya is a 2020 Communications graduate. She has been looking for a job in her major in many different industries but no luck. Maya engages with her college's career services office and applies to positions on various job sites (Indeed, LinkedIn, ZipRecruiter), but the opportunities are slim. She has determined some associations and organizations that align with her profession, and she attends some online networking events. Her network is growing, but no job offers yet. 

As her parent, you know two individuals in your network who have used their communications degree in the field that Maya has mentioned. You reach out to those individuals and see if they would be open to talking with Maya about their career path. It works out, you make the introduction and encourage Maya to brush up on information interview skills before talking to your contacts. Maya learns through the interviews that constantly developing strong written communication skills is critical. 

 Over a quiet dinner, you and Maya take time to visit and explore some job titles that fall under the Communications major. Maya has always talked about working in a health-related field. The Health Educator position appeals to Maya, and so you hone in on the knowledge, skills, and abilities section. You spend time talking about the skills that Maya needs and the ones that need work. It turns out customer-service and written communication are areas Maya feels she needs work. 

 Maya begins to look for a job locally and finds that several security companies supporting pharmaceutical and healthcare facilities need site managers. Also, eldercare companies are looking for marketing coordinators. Both opportunities are part-time, but they involved writing reports, documentation, and engaging with the public. When hired, Maya will be able to offset employment gaps and add relevant transferrable skills to her resume. When the market bounces back, Maya can refigure her resume to include this transferable experience.  

With patience and an agreed strategy, Maya will eventually land in a career using her Communications degree and earning decent wages. Smart Moms is available to assist recent college grads with a personalized Keep It Moving Strategy. Contact for more details.

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