If you’ve taken a career break and are now looking to return to the workforce, would you consider taking an internship? Career reentry expert Carol Fishman Cohen thinks you should. In this talk, hear about Cohen’s own experience as a 40-year-old intern, her work championing the success of “relaunchers” and how employers are changing how they engage with return-to-work talent.

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43 thoughts on “How to get back to work after a career break | Carol Fishman Cohen”

  1. I can see this turning into the new Hunger Games. Keep giving internships to MS degree for $10/hr. Maybe it works out for them, maybe we hire some billionaire's second cousin. Who knows what'll happen. May the odds be in your favor.

  2. Hello! I would love any advice on going back into the workforce. I have two part-time jobs but life circumstances are demanding I make enough money to pay all the bills. Thank you!

  3. This was very encouraging for me! I am re entering the workforce after 18 years as a mom. Carol's talk comforted me and made me realize there are many of us that have solid, marketable skills but we need to rethink how we look at ourselves. Thank you Carol! Barbara D.

  4. But how do I start a career after a long break when I didn’t get a career started before? I have no recent references, old degrees, and old minimal job experiences that is unrelated to what I’m applying for?

    Is my only option to go back to school?

  5. Its really good to hear this. With being almost 2 years out of work, I had pretty much given up hope, and haven't even bothered attempting for any postition in my field (tech). I mean, the "fear of risk" stigma shouldn't be there in the first place (because that is all it is, especially in corporate environments). Employees today are constantly learning, while managers constantly do the same thing. So I say, the real risk is those managers. And its good to see that Companies are taking action with re-entry programs vs what those "managers" are suggesting. Its a breath of fresh air.

  6. Why can't I find any information about people who need to return to the workforce without having had a highly focused and successful career beforehand? I have been at home raising my kids for nearly 9 years and the jobs I had before were minimum wage and part time so that I could also finish my degree. I have never had a job in what I got my degree in and the jobs I had while finishing school were ones any high school kid could get and frankly ones I'd never want to return to. Every YouTube video and article I find about "relaunchers" refer to highly focused career professionals, like social workers, Wall Street people and freaking rocket scientists. Many of us are not in that category– not even close. I was in my 20s when I married and made the decision to have and raise children at home before tackling a career. Where can I find information and guidance for people like me? I'm not a lawyer, account, neuroscientist etc., etc.– I worked at the YMCA while I completed a degree in English and I've taken care of my family for almost a decade. I return to the workforce in 5 months. I am fully prepared for entry level employment but it would be great to find resources reaching out to my specific demographic. There are a lot of us out there.

  7. I wish to rejoin my former company after a break of 6 years, however they are offering me a lower designation(Executive)than I had with them previously(Senior Executive). Should I accept it? How do I negotiate for the same designation and salary ?

  8. Been a house wife since 1996. Just now trying to get back into a job. That's 20 years. It's a bit more than a 'break.' lol

  9. This is an excellent talk with some valuable insight.  One – expect to have a lot of conversations that go nowhere.  And two – eliminate the perceived risk employers will place on you by proving yourself.  This brings back memories when I was desperately trying to land my first job after my MBA back in 2006.  I was busy with school, so my only option was to apply for jobs online.  But I received no responses.  With every rejection I grew more and more depressed and desperate.  That's when I decided to change my strategy.  And in 3 months two companies were competing for me!   The biggest difference for me was I stopped selling my credentials and started connecting with employers.  I networked, but with the objective of learning more about their industry, challenges, aspirations, and not with the objective of landing a job.  I am now on a mission to teach others how to do the same so that they can control their careers.  Believe in yourself.  Believe in your talent.  Rejections do not de-value you.  Find a better way for employers to discover your value IF job applications aren't doing it.

  10. I came home from work.
    Was tired. Sat down on the sofa. Put my feet up.

    Wife brought me a glass of water. Son gave me a sheet of paper 📄

    English. 17 /100
    BM. 35/100
    Maths. 40 /100
    Physics 37/100
    Chemistry 42/100

    I lost my temper

    "What is this?
    All the time on phone and TV.
    How dare you show me such marks?"

    Wife said: "Be patient. Listen…."

    I told her:
    "Shut up. It's your love and pampering that has spoilt him. He is no good."

    Wife said: "Oh. Really?"

    I said:
    "No one in our family has performed so badly ever."

    Son said:
    "Dad. I was cleaning the old cupboard and I found this."
    "This is your old school report card."


  11. wow the number of people in the comments who don't know that the word career is a distinct one with a specific meaning different from work, or job, or earning a living somehow in whatever way…

    guess that's by design in a system where still most aren't well prepared to understand options and how to leverage the different approaches to economic existence… but fyi for the uninformed: a career is something you plan out and pursue by intent and your own going out there and finding and/or founding of opportunities, in an often harder and/or less obvious way

    having a break from such, or never having done such at all, doesn't mean you haven't worked, or don't earn some kind of living, or aren't looking for or holding down just regular "jobs" in the generic sense of something that just pays you money to do something, regardless of whether it's actually a bigger-picture and longer-term valuable thing for you to be doing, valuable to you, to society, or both

    career is about something more than just a job, or earning to get by (or even earning to get rich in something you hate or serves no purpose for anyone else), and something more (or at least different) from all kinds of other work we do for no pay, aka the informal economy, whether household or family raising or community or volunteer or etc etc etc (though the family raising kind I would actually call just a different kind of career, in a sense of it being full fledged work of a longterm sort, that takes planning and aiming of your course along the path etc., at least if done well and not just phoning in or absentee parenting or partnering)

    anyway, fyi to all the confused up in here…career actually means something specific, different from what you apparently think it does

  12. I have connected with people I want to connect with. It would be weird to talk to strangers about finding a job, isn't it? Imagine hearing this at a party on Friday night "I'm still looking for a job. How's your week?"

  13. A bit of disconnect. She says the benefit of relaunchers are that they have settled, that they know what they want. And then go on to contradict it by saying it's the relaunchers responsibility to figure out if they still have the passion for particular position or skill. Seems like employers are not unfounded in their worries, according to her.

    Also, title is misleading. It's not how to get back after break, it's more like a history of and what employers are currently doing to attract relaunchers.

  14. Ummmmmmm what about the impending crisis of capitalism? This talk is for privileged people…that isn't how it is for many others. It's just a giant impasse.

  15. I've personally been on a 3 year hiatus from the workforce. I was dealing with a lot of personal issues that hindered me from doing anything with a clear head. I actually JUST got back into it as a intern in fact. Interesting to see this video at this time in my life. Stay up yall. Nothing is permanent.

  16. I'm on a career break of 4 years… after high school I didn't got into medical school (although I did get into dental school but I had my head high in sky so I didn't take it and I decided to take a year off and then another year and then another) I regret taking too many breaks 'cause it's getting boring for me to do the same thing again and again. I could've graduated today but 'cause of my over ambitious mentality I'm behind my peers;

  17. As someone who is hesitant to return to work after taking some time off I really needed to hear this. thank you!!

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