Re-booting your career after a sabbatical

“I completed MCA in 2009, after that I did some teaching job and tried for public sector jobs. I have suffered from some health related problems and family issues.Till now I am not successful in cracking exams. Now I am thinking to go back to software industry as it is the area where can i perform better. But IT companies will be shocked to see my career gap. I don’t want to show fake certificate and get job. As I will not feel comfortable. Its better to struggle and survive. But I am confused will they consider me or my career in IT is finished. I am depressed, should i try in start up companies,will they give me a chance. I have completed a course in and I will do a live project on it.”

Its never too late to start. Your situations aren’t you, but how you handle them. The years of sabbatical that you had to take, can happen to any one.

Hence, lets focus on what is left with you now. You have shared that you have already completed a certification recently and is looking forward to the live projects. Thats makes you relevant and competent to apply for the jobs.

Your decision to join startup is excellent. At smaller firms, fewer number of people handle larger share of responsibilities. This opens up countless opportunities to grow beyond the defined job description.

Till that happens to you, look for projects online through portals such as elance. A steady track record of work will build you strong.

Connect with fellow techies through communities such as Stack Exchange and Quora. Try and contribute and help solving problems for others. In finding solution for them, you will actualise your potential. It will also get you aligned with the mindset and work styles, required at workplace today. Picking up a catch phrase is easy, stay focussed on the current buzz.

Attend seminars and conferences relevant to your field. Initially it might intimidate you to suddenly be exposed to a room full of people. Avoid comparing yourself to them. Just become a human sponge to soak in all the information and preparedness that you might see in them. Don’t focus on making connections but building relationships. Identify who is looking for what. You may not initially have anything to offer, but no sooner you will be resourceful enough to support their growth.

Read widely and blog in the areas of work you wish to take up. Its a very effective way to brand yourself. A resume is never enough. Blogging offers the quickest measure to your maturity over the subject and research.

You have already worked as a teacher, offer mentoring on areas thats your strength. Its a natural progression for you. Mentor on any skill you can think of. Nothing is ever too small or insignificant. Even if you groom someone in effective communication, it counts. Mentoring is the fastest way to master skills. It requires to us to identify learning curves and the pattern for facilitating learning in others. In doing so, you will remain patient with your learning cycles. The communities are the best places where you can look for people to mentor.

When you apply for a job, you may not be put these on your resume. However, it will build your job-readiness far beyond you can imagine.

Wish you all the best!

As discussed on Sabbatical