The current unemployment headlines and statistics are staggering. Here are just a few:
- “Decade of job gains erased in April! Unemployment soars to 14.7% as lockdowns throw 20.5 million out of work in one month.” (Wall Street Journal, 5/8/20)
- “The real unemployment rate, which includes people who are not looking for work or are underemployed, already stands at 22.8%, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Mnuchin (Treasure Secretary, Steve Mnuchin) acknowledged that the jobless rate may be even higher and stand at 25%, comparable to the Great Depression….” (CNBC, 5/10/20)
- “This marks the highest unemployment rate since the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics started tracking the monthly data in 1948.” (CNN Business, 5/8/20)
In the face of this incredibly challenging news, you may find yourself asking this question: “How will I get through this?!?” Additional questions might include: How can I pay my bills? Where are the jobs that I can do? What kind of jobs will employers be hiring for? What if my skills and experiences aren’t suited for what I want to do, or for what’s available? I recognize there are many more….
I’ve been serving with Crossroads Career for over 15 years, and while I’m with the rest of the world in not having experienced an unemployment crisis specifically like this, I have been through multiple recessions and supported thousands of people in their job searches. I’ve also personally gone through unemployment, underemployment, misemployment and been unfulfilled in my work. None of those categories have simple or easy answers. However, while I don’t have any silver bullets, I have found several remedies that Crossroads Career has to offer.
First, the Crossroads Career approach to a Christ-centered, life-changing job hunt is a paradox from the “normal” job search approaches that I’ve encountered and experienced. It’s simple, but not easy. It’s looking at your job search as a way to give and serve others versus looking at it as only a method to gain something for yourself. We believe that by seeking to love God completely, love yourself correctly, and love others compassionately through your job search, you will experience a true, faith-based job transition that will not only lead you to the right job, but also fill you with peace and joy.
Second, in my 30 years of human resources experience, I’ve interviewed thousands of people and seen tens of thousands of resumes. At Crossroads Career we supply you with an incredible free toolbox of practical and tactical tools to help you navigate the tumultuous journey of a job transition. We work to shift your thought habits about finding a job, along with putting into practice tried and true processes to help you maximize your potential throughout the search.
Lastly, I encourage you not to go on this journey alone. I’ve found that the most important asset people can lose during a job transition is their self-confidence. I know that I certainly experienced that. I learned that my confidence shouldn’t be in myself, but in Christ, and He can give me the assurance that through Him, I can accomplish all things (Phil. 2:13). Crossroads Career can come alongside you with encouragement and accountability to keep moving and not falter. Through prayer, Scripture, and hundreds of volunteers who are there to support you, we want you to experience a job search that leads you to a deeper walk with Christ and fulfilling employment.
How will you get through this?? With love, encouragement, and support!
Dave Sparkman currently serves as the volunteer Crossroads Career board chair and local ministry leader. He is also the founder and managing director of Spark Your Culture, a corporate culture consulting firm. Prior to that he worked at UnitedHealth Group, a Fortune #5 public company, serving in the role of Chief Culture Officer. His unemployment experience came from the implosion of Arthur Andersen, where he served as the West Region Managing Partner, People.