It's been, to say the least, an interesting time in our working lives. Less work for some, more work for others. Moments of clarity and other times, more questions than answers. To help with a few of these, we touched base with UMENCO founder and career counsellor, Angela Briggs. Here, she shares her insights on when businesses might start hiring again, and the future of freelancing (it's not all bad news). Plus, where to start when deciding your future career direction.
We've had a kind of period of pause in our working lives. When is this likely to change?
Businesses and freelancers are doing their utmost to be in a good position asap and have the September end date of the JobKeeper payment at the forefront of their minds. If we can continue to keep COVID-19 under control, businesses are able to trade effectively and effective stimulus is in place, I would hope prior to holiday season we will all be better better financially and will have some great learns in place from this 'pause period'.
Have you seen any positives come out of this unprecedented period?
Absolutely, there has been a greater appreciation for team members who do great work and have a resilient, positive attitude. And I have noticed a confidence to let go of outdated strategies that may have not been working for sometime. There is a wonderful sense of energy, collaboration and innovation emerging post COVID-19.
When do you believe businesses will start hiring again, for staff and freelance roles?
Over the past two weeks we have begun placing talent in roles in Sydney and New Zealand and new roles have come about in Sydney, L.A. and Melbourne. The market is slower and there are a higher amount of applications due to unemployment but things are definitely improving. Freelance roles will become more widely available moving forward as brands work through tighter budgets due to the financial implications of COVID-19 and the bushfires here in Australia.
What should we be focusing on at the moment when it comes to our working lives and purpose?
I think this differs for each individual and their own circumstances. I believe starting with your values, goals and what brings you happiness and fulfilment is a good starting point.
UMENCO offers one-on-one career coaching for individuals in the fashion, beauty and lifestyle industries, on a pay what you choose basis, with its Project You initiative. In exchange for Project You consultations, UMENCO requests that clients choose what they donate directly to Giant Steps. Find out more here.