Q : I have a special skill that my industry needs, but I can’t find a job to use it. I’m not just hunting online. I’m calling employers and interviewing. What can I do to be hired for what I want to do?
A: You won’t be when you structure interviews to motivate an employer to create a job for you. Create the preconception of you being hired by giving the over-arching reasons to hire you.
Record significant results for past employers from using your core skill.
Identify four skills related to your core to make a full-fledged job for you to propose.
Return to the core skill. Turn each result into a question for an employer. For example, if you made money, write a question asking whether the employer wants to see more revenue generated by employees. Did you increase productivity? Ask if greater productivity would be an asset.
In an interview, after you ask your questions and mention your results, ask if the employer would like to see a proposal from you. Then write one and go back in to present it. If the employer can’t use you, ask for a referral to another department.
Q: I’m leaving my company in a few months for consulting. At 65, I’m finding that everyone is asking me about “retirement.” Not only do I not plan to retire. I don’t plan to semi-retire.
All of the talk about baby boomers retiring has me worried, though, because I’m leaving a company at retirement age and I don’t know what I’m going to do every day. How can I get around this?
A: You’re actually between jobs, with the emphasis on jobs, not between. You know generally where you’re headed – consulting. Do you know specifically? If you haven’t already created a first-year strategy for consulting, including a list of the companies you expect to approach, make this time your bridge. The worst thing you could do to yourself is wait until after you leave the company.
Also, think about how you’ll reorganize your weeks for work, volunteer and lifestyle activities. What have you had to put off because of work? Schedule those in so you have some structure when you start. After you try them out, decide whether to keep doing them.