From Furlough to Full Time – Chapter 2


Author: Alice Faile

Contributing Consultant

From Furlough to Full Time – Chapter 2

Now what?

this picture shows a person holding a newspaper, representing the bad news of being furloughed. He's looking for full-time work, and this is Chapter 2 of the series.
Photo by Maksim Goncharenok on

So, you’ve been let go, laid off, furloughed, fired, terminated – whatever word you use all amounts to the same thing – you are now out of work.

And you need to find a full-time position, soon.

Now you’ve had a few days to absorb the bad news and deal with the emotional aftermath, we’re going to look at some job search process ideas.

Right about now, you are probably dusting off your resume, updating it to reflect your last position, thinking about recruiters, HR managers, your colleagues and friends.

And I get that – you are finally revved back up! You’ve been down in the valley of anger, frustration, and fear. Now what? You need to prepare to go from furlough to full time again!

Obvious answer is “uhhhh, c’mon, Don. Find a new position!”  …

If you’d like to review Chapter 1 of the “From Furlough to Full Time” series, click here.

OK then – how (and where) do you get started?

Your first instinct is probably going to be: get my resume posted to all the big job boards! Call a few recruiters, and let them know you’re available!

In other words, you gotta “get the word out!”

And yes, you do need to do that. OK. What words are you going to share with your network?

Go – I’ll wait…

How powerful will your message be? How much rambling will you do when people ask you “what are you looking for?”

Do you know your target market? Are you aware of some target companies in that market? Do you know what title this job reports to? Do you know whether your market space is growing or shrinking? Is anyone in that space is hiring right now?

I’m going to go out on a limb here, and say you are probably saying to yourself “forget all that – let’s just get this resume updated, rewritten, and then blasted everywhere!”

Because yes – this is indeed one approach – but is it the best one to get you from furlough to full time?

YES, YOU DO WANT TO get your resume refreshed…

But it is the first thing you should do?

To clarify, let me ask you – did you like your last job? Did you do it well? Were you looking forward each Monday, to going to work?

Oh yeah. There’s all that. I’ll ask you some more in a moment.

First, let’s get back to your original thought.

Yes, you do want to talk to your network…

…and tell them you are available and looking for a new position. You do want to post your availability on all of the social media platforms. You do want to call and email the folks in your own Rolodex (if you even have one, or know what one is). And you do want to reach out to other personal and professional contacts.

But at the right time.

After all, most people do it this way, right?

This is a picture of an open window, that shows how that "when one door closes, a window opens somewhere else" on the path from furlough to full time.
Photo by Luke Webb on

Strange as it may sound, we don’t agree. 

As trite as the cliche is, it is true that when a door closes a window opens somewhere else. 

This is exactly the right moment to can take some time and reevaluate where you have been and where you might want to go next.


Bear with me a bit here.

Before you go and refresh your resume to contain the skills you’ve gained in your last job, ask yourself some basic questions:

  • Were you happy with your last position (or last few positions)?
  • Did it/they encourage you to get up in the morning ready to work?
  • Were you almost relieved when they laid you off?
  • If you were happy and fulfilled, good for you. You are on the right track.

If you weren’t, this is the time to think about what would inspire and excite you.

Journal a bit. Think a bit. Slow down to speed up.

What would be your “dream” job (unfortunately, being independently wealthy or winning the lottery may not really be options for most of us, but there are many others.)? Think about why you want to get out of bed in the morning and go to work? When you feel like you are using your SuperPowers, what are you doing? What would people say you were born to do? Where can we find that type of job again?

Think about this and put it down in writing (you’ll see why in a future post). 

List all the factors that would be part of your ideal position. What market would you serve? which type of position do you want? What level of responsibility do you like? Where does this next position lie on your career path? Where is the location of my next job – home office, hybrid, work from the office entirely? 

Include the things that were positive in your past positions as well as those that were missing.

Does this set of tasks feel a little daunting? We are are here to support you in your search process. Our team can guide you through the process and help ensure that you are on the right path for your goals.

After all, we are an outside set of eyes on people’s job search process and paperwork.

The point of the post

Don’t let the fear consume you. Put your thoughts down on paper, create a plan, then execute that plan. With the right activities, the right situation will magically appear – when you least expect it. And soon you’ll have gone from furlough to full time.

#careercoaching #resumewriting #resumes #gethired #legal

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#careercoaching #resumewriting #resumes #gethired #legal