Carol Fishman Cohen: How to get back to work after a career break
Carol F. Cohen - CEO and co-founder, iRelaunch
Carol Fishman Cohen documents successful transitions back into the workforce after career breaks. Full bio
after a career break:
career breaks for elder care,
career transitioners of all kinds:
after a career break is hard
between the employers
with a gap on their resume
can have doubts about their abilities
for a long time.
that I'm trying to help solve.
are everywhere and in every field.
to be home with his five children.
about nurses returning to work
in Orange County, California,
in a social services organization
that I'm aware of.
early in her career.
who took a 13-year career break.
by the Today Show
to return to work
who loved her time at home,
and needed to return to work,
to bring work back into her life
a good day in the job search.
or accounting role,
the last nine months
if I could work with her
turn things around.
was she had to get out of the house.
with her job search
about her interest in returning to work.
to have a lot of conversations
be discouraged by it.
to a job opportunity."
with Tracy in a little bit,
a discovery that I made
out of the full-time workforce.
is frozen in time.
when you start to get in touch with people
with those people from the past,
or went to school,
has diminished over time,
from our professional identities.
you might think of yourself
of driving around in my minivan.
to be back in touch with these people
about your interest in returning to work.
from my own career break.
with the business news.
for my four young children.
that didn't exist anymore.
to the Wall Street Journal
cover to cover before I felt
in the business world again.
are a gem of the workforce,
for childcare reasons,
or partner job relocations.
at an employer's expense.
an enthusiasm about returning to work
away from it for a while.
that employers have
are worried that relaunchers
obsolete myself at one point,
so long ago that I used Lotus 1-2-3.
can even remember back that far,
A lot of the commands are the same.
expect them to come to the table
of basic office management software.
responsibility to get there.
that employers have about relaunchers
don't know what they want to do.
to do the hard work
and skills have changed
to demonstrate to the employer
return to work programs since 2008,
paid work opportunity,
an internship or not,
to return to work.
a nontraditional reentry candidate,
internship program in the military,
about what I was seeing,
for Harvard Business Review
there for that title,
in the midst of all the college interns.
"The 50-Year-Old Intern."
financial services companies
for returning finance professionals.
hundreds of people have participated.
to permanent roles
for returning engineers
with the Society of Women Engineers.
the reentry internship?
on an actual work sample
that permanent hiring decision
removes the perceived risk
to hiring relaunchers,
were not interested
are programs being developed
for these programs
this problem for relaunchers,
career transitioners too.
a retiree internship program.
what happened with Tracy Shapiro.
everyone she knew
with another parent in her community
in a finance department.
there was a possibility
but no guarantees.
and she loved the people
than 10 minutes from her house.
for a permanent full-time role,
with this internship
all of their expectations,
made her a permanent offer
interesting and challenging,
to get her MBA at night.
to work for her.
for both Tracy and her employer.
the reentry internship concept
after a career break,
or an internship-like arrangement
a formal reentry internship program.
for more relaunchers to come.
About the speaker:Carol F. Cohen - CEO and co-founder, iRelaunch
Carol Fishman Cohen documents successful transitions back into the workforce after career breaks.
Why you should listen
Carol Fishman Cohen is CEO and co-founder of iRelaunch, a comprehensive career reentry resource for employers, individuals, universities and professional associations. Cohen has been on a dual mission for nearly 15 years: to elevate the profile and champion the success of professionals returning to the workforce after a career break, and to educate and support employers that engage with return-to-work talent. Her goal is to normalize the career path that includes a career break and document successful transitions back into the workforce so that employers understand the value proposition that returning professionals provide.
Cohen is the co-author of career reentry strategy book Back on the Career Track and a returning professional herself. Her return to work at Bain Capital after 11 years out of the full-time workforce is documented in a Harvard Business School case study. She has connected with thousands of professionals who have successfully returned to work after a hiatus, and she has engaged with hundreds of hiring managers to understand their perspectives on hiring people returning from career break.
iRelaunch's flagship event, the annual iRelaunch Return-to-Work Conference in New York City, is the leading external source of candidates for the major Wall Street reentry internship programs and is the largest and longest-running dedicated career reentry event in the United States. Cohen has been tracking career reentry programs of all types since 2008 and writes a series of articles for Harvard Business Review on the theme "The 40-Year-Old Intern." She originated and co-leads the Society of Women Engineers/iRelaunch STEM Reentry Task Force, an initiative to increase the pipeline of female engineers via reentry internship programs at STEM sector companies.
Carol F. Cohen | Speaker | TED.com