519 - What Career Breaks Can Tell You

Posted August 4, 2022 by Mark Perna

Episode: 519

Episode Title: What Career Breaks Can Tell You

How can you find out how a candidate used their career break during the interview? Here are some questions to ask, next on The Perna Syndicate.

 

Ep 519 show:

You’re now in The Perna Syndicate—and I’m glad you’re here! If you’re a hiring manager, it may be time to rethink your reaction when you see a gap between jobs on a candidate’s resume. 

 

With career breaks becoming a normal part of many people’s employment journey, companies can’t afford to dismiss an application just because the person was not formally employed for a period of time. Instead, we should be curious about why that gap happened and how the candidate matured during that time. 

 

Here are some sample questions you might ask:

 

Tell me about the growth you saw in yourself during this break. What did you learn about problem-solving? How would you apply those skills in this role?

 

The environment here is fast-paced and requires frequent direction changes. Tell me about a time during that break that required you to change course and what you learned about staying agile.

 

The role will have many competing priorities, and you’ll be asked to balance many workstreams effectively. What have you learned about prioritization and multitasking and how might you apply that to the role?

 

These questions, and others like them, can give you insight into the person that traditional interviewing techniques may not. As we talked about last week, it’s the person you want to hire, not just the skills. And career breaks are nothing if not personal. 

 

Tomorrow: Is it time for you to take a career break? On the next episode of The Perna Syndicate, we’ll talk about the right reasons to go for it. See you then!


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Mark Perna
Mark C. Perna is an international speaker and bestselling author. He also serves as CEO of TFS Results, a strategic consulting firm at the forefront of the national paradigm shift in education and workforce development.
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