By Benét J. Wilson, DJTF chair
First, I must apologize for how I’ve let this blog go. I really thought that during my unemployment, I’d have much more time to devote to it. But that wasn’t the case. In some ways, I worked harder while unemployed that the regular day-to-day operations of a regular job.
The good news is that I did find another job. My first day was Monday. In my original post on Oct. 7, I offered tips on how those of you in my old situation could jumpstart — or start — your job search efforts. They work.
I moved away — quickly — from the mourning of the job loss. I kept hearing how well I was taking the layoff, but I really didn’t have time to look back. Having that resume ready was very helpful, because I could literally send it at a moment’s notice. Even if you have a job and are comfortable in it (like I was), have the resume ready to send out tomorrow if need be.
One of the three jobs that were offered to me came as a direct result of my 100% updated LinkedIn profile. My network and groups were great resources for job and freelance leads. And the recommendations were mentioned in all of my job interviews.
I was a BIG fan of social media (Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and Google+) before my layoff, and I’m an even bigger fan now. I received 2 other job leads (that resulted in offers) from Facebook and Twitter. And Twitter and Google+ led to a nice pile of freelance work that continues to this day. I’ve managed to build two great networks — aviation and journalism — using my social media outlets. And they were my salvation after the layoff.
In the end, I was offered a journalism job, a communications job and an editorial job for an association. I did struggle, because I thought I wanted to stay in journalism. But I ended up becoming the director of media relations for the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association. This job offered the perfect blend, allowing me to use my communications/PR, community manager, social media consultant and aviation media/marketing skills. And did I mention that one of the perks is free flying lessons?
So that’s my story. I want to say thanks to all of you who sent me words of encouragement. I want to thank my freelance folks for giving me all kinds of great advice for getting set up and what to charge. I want to thank all my Aviation Week colleagues for their support and personal recommendations. And thanks to my fellow aviation journalists and the aviation community for the job leads and freelance work.
And for those of you out there still searching — don’t give up. Work your network and think outside the box — that next job is around the corner!