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How Attorneys Can Survive The “Survival Job”

by Beverly Aarons 29. March 2012 09:09

Many attorneys who have been out of work for long time seriously consider taking a survival job. But can working outside your field spell trouble for your job search?  Below are a few tips on how to survive the “survival job”:

1.      Don’t take a job too far outside your career, especially if there is a possibility that you will remain unemployed for an extended period of time. For example, it might be difficult to explain to employers why you worked as a pizza delivery guy (or similar low-level job) for one year.  This potentially awkward situation might prove even more so for experienced attorneys.

2.      If you seriously can’t find work other than jobs far outside your field (i.e. pizza delivery guy, waitress or administrative assistant) make sure you remain there for only a short period of time. We’re talking less than six months.

3.      Don’t engage in heavy-handed self-marketing while at your survival job.  While it’s okay to gently hint at your interest in an attorney position while working a survival job at a law firm, don’t overdo it.

4.      Do make sure that you remain connected to your network of colleagues and continue your job search.  Taking a survival job may be demoralizing; but don’t allow your disappointment to stop your job search momentum.

5.      Do prevent skills from atrophying. Taking a class and attending workshops will not only keep your skills up-to-date, it will provide an opportunity to network. 


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