The change to remote work in 2020 opened up new possibilities for many people. Suddenly, workers all over America could cut out long commutes, spend more time with family, and focus on their goals. For some, they reevaluated their careers and found new opportunities. In April of 2021, over 740,000 people left the leisure and service industry for wanting higher wages, reducing their hours to 40 a week, changing career paths, and more.
On the other hand, 10 million mothers were on leave, unemployed, or not in the labor force in January 2021 because caring for a family became too demanding. Here are six ways you can take advantage of this cultural shift in the workforce and negotiate the career and lifestyle you want.
1. Stretch opportunities can lead to a raise or promotion
Now is a great time to talk with your manager about your current job. Discuss how your salary compares with coworkers and industry rates. Does it reflect the level of work you are currently producing? Consider stretch opportunities to help you tactfully negotiate for a better position in the company.
2. Take the time to figure out what you want
If your needs have changed since the pandemic, don’t be afraid to ask for what you need and consider non-traditional solutions. Nothing about this moment in history is traditional. Remote and hybrid working situations, moving to part-time, or asking for a sabbatical are all options to create the work-life you desire. Take time now to figure out what you need from your career at this moment, and then make a plan for how to ask.
3. Apply for your dream job
The need to fill positions also means greater flexibility of benefits and requirements of the job description. So, consider applying for that dream job. You might find that you already have what they want even if you don’t have the exact number of years of experience listed in the requirements. When you get the offer, ask for the benefits that support your needs, not just the companies.
4. Grow your skill set and get involved
Build your confidence to speak up! Want to learn new skills? Ask to go to conferences, set up a time with a mentor, or get certified in a new skill. The more you invest in yourself, the more possibilities you will have in the future.
5. Redesign the company culture
While you might not be responsible for company policies, this doesn’t mean that you can’t affect change. Reach out to your coworkers and initiate team-building activities or social events to build your workplace community. You can find opportunities to mentor others and help them achieve their goals. Negotiate for more flexibility and work-life balance to avoid burnout. Help new voices contribute to promoting diversity.
In our increasingly digital world, you can reach out to people all over the world. Informational interviews are easier than ever to set up, so take advantage and find out about jobs you never knew existed. It can also be a way to find a mentor, meet someone you admire or expand your horizons. Check out IAW’s membership to find out how you can get connected to thousands of women just like you!
Whichever method you choose, nothing feels greater than knowing you have a supportive community of like-minded women backing you. IAW helps women find dream jobs, connect to women in their area, grow their business, and find mentorship. Visit our website to see how you can rise up today!