"Just" Been a Mum for the last 8 Years.(19 Posts)
So...I need opinions and AIBU is the place to get them..so I read!
I haven't worked for the last 8 years, I've been lucky enough to be able to be a stay at home parent whilst DH has worked. It was the right choice for us and has worked out well but now is the time for me to re-enter working society!
I haven't even got a CV and don't have a career, as to be totally honest, i haven't put a lot "into myself" during the last 8 years, in hindsight I could of/should of probably used nursery and school hours to possibly re-educate myself on a variety of subjects or could have chosen a particular field and used my time productively to ensure that when this time came along, I could hopefully get a good job.
Unfortunately I didn't do that so I am now looking for work spanning a range of roles and have sat down today and made a start on the dreaded CV. It's obviously pretty sparse (I'm 31) and all of my "Skills" are outdated but if you were or are an employer or possibly recruiter, what would you like to read from somebody who had been out out work for such a long time? I know a lot of earth mothers put something along the lines of "I have taken time out from my career to fulfil the most rewarding job in the world and having raised little Ronnie and Reggie to their full potential, I am now ready to re-establish my working connections and resume my motherly duties during their weekend breaks from Oxford"
However, I don't really want to go down the route of motherhood being my only interest for the last 8 years, I would like to come across well but not boring!
Any advice on what would appeal to you, what you would like to read? Do's and don't's and also include definite no no's!
On a final note, HELP!
Write about your other interests and hobbies.
Say what you're good at. What you'd like to get better out. What you think is important.
I would apply for any job at all that initially gets you back into work mode and lets you gain more skills which will help with your cv. I had a break from work and have accepted a minimum wage job just to get me back into it short term. You'll stand more chance of gaining a decent job if you are already employed ( in anything).
Have you done anything in those 8 years that will have some transferable skills? I mean been on any committees, set up groups, any volunteering etc?
I'm currently a SAHM to a 1 year old and am expecting DC2 so expect to have the same problem in a few years. However I've tried to keep my skills up to date a little - I help set up and run a website for my Church, show people how to create spreadsheets (I'm an excel geek!) and I'm on my church PCC. I'm not saying they replace experience but all have skills beyond being a Mum that can be useful in the workplace.
Would voluntary work be an option whilst you are looking. From my own job interviews and from sitting on interview panels, I'd say it's always reflected well.
Yes to including any skills gained from voluntary/community work.
No to dressing up the skills that you have gained as a mum.
Yes to explaining that you have been out of work for a few years to look after your children.
No to the kind of crap that you mention in your OP about doing the most important job in the world etc.
Yes to emphasising your strengths and any previous experience.
Yes to trying to get any addittional experience under your belt, whether paid or voluntary.
And yes to using any contacts that you might have to get a foot in the door.
Could you try temping as a way of getting some recent experience?
I know you weren't being serious but I have read applications that say 'I took time out to do the hardest job in the world' and I just didn't take them seriously after that!!
Don't mention your kids in every sentence but do remember that home life is a reference point, for example juggling children takes organisational skills
Yes I know RedPanda- I have read similar CV's due to DH being self employed and going through a period of looking for help and I was embarrassed on their behalf! I know that may sound extremely critical but it just doesn't read well.
In reply to everybody else, no i haven't done any voluntary work although that may now be an option. I have however helped a lot with DH business, basic stuff like answering the phone, arranging meetings, booking hotels, writing responses etc. Although I wasn't technically an employee, I can certainly list those skills acquired on my CV as skills that I have. Before the 8 year gap, I was 22/23 and basically an arse! Not doing anything worthwhile, travelling around a bit, some call centre work, reception work, I only wanted money to enjoy myself with so was never really committed to anything, terrible I know.
I see no reason why you can't make the most of any experience that you've gained in your family business. Doesn't matter if you were paid for it or not. It's still work experience.
Youve listed lots of employable skills in your last post! It dorsnt matter if you werent technically an employee, yiu still did those jobs. That’s an admin / PA role possibly.
One thing for your letter / cv though, and honestly this isnt meant to be arsy at all, it is purely because youre writting cv’s / letters for jobs etc and just in case you use it! It is could / would / should have, not of.
I’m not sure I’d even write a CV given your lack of jobs. Definitely take a minimum wage job to get you back working. Or look into training of some type. At interview, you can talk about the work you’ve done for your husband’s business.
and say you’ve been at home with your children.
But leave it at that. Dressing up child-rearing and running a house as a job is a joke. I work FT, run a house and raise my kids. Just say you wanted to be at home with them and everyone will understand. I’m not judging your choices, I’m just saying don’t try and make out to employers that it’s akin to an office job etc
Do you need to rush back right now? Could you do a course or qualification in something you're interested in and will hopefully lead into a career you are interested in too?
Oh god, I'm in exactly the same situation op... haven't worked for 9 years
What area would you like to work in? What about doing some training courses online, adult education classes, course at your local college?
Could you set up your own small business? I’ve run two small businesses since I stopped working in 2011 -have had to learn a lot of skills, and covers that period on my CV since my last “proper job”
My husband goes through a tonne of CVs a week, he works in finance and they're hiring a lot right now. He's said seeing a CV with a gap due to someone taking time out to care.for children doesn't put him off at all if they have relevant knowledge and experience (albeit a while back)
Could you make your CV competence based rather than experience based, with some evidence/examples? For example Communicating, Delivering at pace, Working with others. Might that work for you?
I was at home for 20 years but I also worked hard to help my husband with OUR business.
I was never paid a penny!
We split up and he died.
I went to an agency and ended up in QC. I was good at it, I took courses in my own time which apparently showed self development. It was a temporary position.
It helped immensely with getting the job I have now (unrelated to QC).
I also asked my QC manager if he could help
me with my CV. He completely rewrote it. It is now superbly written using terms, phrases etc I just didn't know. I'd give me a job now.
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