In most cases, the process of divorce is painful and exhausting. It takes away a lot of time, energy, nerves, and money. It's not surprising that many women have to quit their jobs because they experience severe depression while going through a divorce.
Fortunately, with the pass of time, the pain fades away, and life gets back to normal. One day, a woman feels that she is ready to start a new chapter. She decides to update her CV and apply for a job…
If you have found yourself in this situation, you probably wonder how to fill in a large gap on your resume. Here are a few pieces of advice for you.
Don't lie to your potential employer
First of all, you should understand that your CV shouldn't contain any false statements. You should be honest and open with your potential employer. Everyone has a tough time sometimes, and you have nothing to hide.
It's a terrible idea to start a new life and a new professional relationship from a lie. Even if you get a job, one day your coworkers will discover the truth, and you will be ashamed.
All you need to do now is to choose an appropriate resume format and structure it in the right way. It will help you to draw the recruiters' attention from the gap on your CV to your professional competency.
Choose a functional resume format
If you have a large gap in work experience due to divorce, you should avoid using a chronological resume format. If you list the most recent job first, an interviewer will easily notice that you haven't been working for more than a year. It will make him doubt the fact that you have kept your skills and knowledge current.
The best choice for you is a functional resume format. It will allow you to list your previous jobs ignoring chronological order. You can start writing your resume by mentioning the most relevant skills and accomplishments to show that you are a perfect fit for the role.
When crafting a CV, you should focus on your core strengths and professional achievements. You should take the recruiter's attention away from the absence of recent experience and other weaknesses.
Write about recently acquired skills
In any case, the employer will want to know what you have been doing during the last few months or years. For this reason, it's crucially important to explain how you have been developing your professional skills and talents. If you have been freelancing or volunteering in the fields related to the job you apply for, feel free to mention this experience in your CV. This is what many writing services for students recommend when helping graduates secure their first job. In fact, it also works well for explaining the gap on your resume and not only when we talk about first-time employment.
If you have recently taken classes online, or attended workshops, or participated in conferences, you can add this information to your resume. It will prove that you aspire to grow professionally.
Don't mention the exact start and end dates
You can make a gap on your resume looks smaller without lying to the employer. You just need to mention employment years and omit months.
Let's imagine that you quit your job on February 1, 2018, and apply for a new job on March 1, 2019. The actual gap in your work experience is 13 months. But if you don't mention an exact date, when you left your previous work, it will seem that the gap is just two months (from December 2018 to March 2019).
Keep in mind that if you need to write a government resume, this trick will not work for you. If you are a federal employee, your resume must include exact start and end dates, average weekly hours, and responsibilities of the previous job.
Optimize your resume for ATS
Today, most companies use Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS). It's a software, which scans, collects and sorts thousands of resumes automatically. So if you want to increase your chances to get an interview, you should stuff your resume with the suitable keywords.
Also, it's crucially important to ensure that your resume is free from typos and spelling errors. If you misspell a keyword, ATS will skip your CV, and you will lose a chance to get a job of your dreams. For this reason, it's highly recommended to utilize reliable writing service or online grammar checker to correct all mistakes.
Even if divorce resulted in a large gap in your employment history, it should not stop you from achieving your dream. All you need to do now is to position yourself in the most favorable light when writing a resume. Follow the examples given, and you will win the recruiters' attention.And please, remember one important thing. Divorce isn't the end of your life; it's the end of the dysfunctional marriage only. It's your time to turn the page and start everything over. Now you can get a job and accomplish your ambitious career goals.
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Women have come a long way in redefining beauty to be more inclusive of different body types, skin colors and hair styles, but society's beauty standards still remain as high as we have always known them to be. In the workplace, professionalism is directly linked to the appearance of both men and women, but for women, the expectations and requirements needed to fit the part are far stricter. Unlike men, there exists a direct correlation between beauty and respect that women are forced to acknowledge, and in turn comply with, in order to succeed.
Before stepping foot into the workforce, women who choose to opt out of conventional beauty and grooming regiments are immediately at a disadvantage. A recent Forbes article analyzing the attractiveness bias at work cited a comprehensive academic review for its study on the benefits attractive adults receive in the labor market. A summary of the review stated, "'Physically attractive individuals are more likely to be interviewed for jobs and hired, they are more likely to advance rapidly in their careers through frequent promotions, and they earn higher wages than unattractive individuals.'" With attractiveness and success so tightly woven together, women often find themselves adhering to beauty standards they don't agree with in order to secure their careers.
Complying with modern beauty standards may be what gets your foot in the door in the corporate world, but once you're in, you are expected to maintain your appearance or risk being perceived as unprofessional. While it may not seem like a big deal, this double standard has become a hurdle for businesswomen who are forced to fit this mold in order to earn respect that men receive regardless of their grooming habits. Liz Elting, Founder and CEO of the Elizabeth Elting Foundation, is all too familiar with conforming to the beauty culture in order to command respect, and has fought throughout the course of her entrepreneurial journey to override this gender bias.
As an internationally-recognized women's advocate, Elting has made it her mission to help women succeed on their own, but she admits that little progress can be made until women reclaim their power and change the narrative surrounding beauty and success. In 2016, sociologists Jaclyn Wong and Andrew Penner conducted a study on the positive association between physical attractiveness and income. Their results concluded that "attractive individuals earn roughly 20 percent more than people of average attractiveness," not including controlling for grooming. The data also proves that grooming accounts entirely for the attractiveness premium for women as opposed to only half for men. With empirical proof that financial success in directly linked to women's' appearance, Elting's desire to have women regain control and put an end to beauty standards in the workplace is necessary now more than ever.
Although the concepts of beauty and attractiveness are subjective, the consensus as to what is deemed beautiful, for women, is heavily dependent upon how much effort she makes towards looking her best. According to Elting, men do not need to strive to maintain their appearance in order to earn respect like women do, because while we appreciate a sharp-dressed man in an Armani suit who exudes power and influence, that same man can show up to at a casual office in a t-shirt and jeans and still be perceived in the same light, whereas women will not. "Men don't have to demonstrate that they're allowed to be in public the way women do. It's a running joke; show up to work without makeup, and everyone asks if you're sick or have insomnia," says Elting. The pressure to look our best in order to be treated better has also seeped into other areas of women's lives in which we sometimes feel pressured to make ourselves up in situations where it isn't required such as running out to the supermarket.
So, how do women begin the process of overriding this bias? Based on personal experience, Elting believes that women must step up and be forceful. With sexism so rampant in workplace, respect for women is sometimes hard to come across and even harder to earn. "I was frequently assumed to be my co-founder's secretary or assistant instead of the person who owned the other half of the company. And even in business meetings where everyone knew that, I would still be asked to be the one to take notes or get coffee," she recalls. In effort to change this dynamic, Elting was left to claim her authority through self-assertion and powering over her peers when her contributions were being ignored. What she was then faced with was the alternate stereotype of the bitchy executive. She admits that teetering between the caregiver role or the bitch boss on a power trip is frustrating and offensive that these are the two options businesswomen are left with.
Despite the challenges that come with standing your ground, women need to reclaim their power for themselves and each other. "I decided early on that I wanted to focus on being respected rather than being liked. As a boss, as a CEO, and in my personal life, I stuck my feet in the ground, said what I wanted to say, and demanded what I needed – to hell with what people think," said Elting. In order for women to opt out of ridiculous beauty standards, we have to own all the negative responses that come with it and let it make us stronger– and we don't have to do it alone. For men who support our fight, much can be achieved by pushing back and policing themselves and each other when women are being disrespected. It isn't about chivalry, but respecting women's right to advocate for ourselves and take up space.
For Elting, her hope is to see makeup and grooming standards become an optional choice each individual makes rather than a rule imposed on us as a form of control. While she states she would never tell anyone to stop wearing makeup or dressing in a way that makes them feel confident, the slumping shoulders of a woman resigned to being belittled looks far worse than going without under-eye concealer. Her advice to women is, "If you want to navigate beauty culture as an entrepreneur, the best thing you can be is strong in the face of it. It's exactly the thing they don't want you to do. That means not being afraid to be a bossy, bitchy, abrasive, difficult woman – because that's what a leader is."