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The Value of the Pivot

When Pivoting Makes Sense


Often times sports analogies are the ideal way to make a point, so let’s talk about “the pivot.”

In basketball a simple pivot can take you from offense to defense.  In football, a quarterback can decide instead of going for a 1st down to send the ball down field.  And in hockey pivoting can make the difference between blocking the goal or letting it slide by.  The same is true in life, particularly when circumstances force major change in a short period.

Typically looking for a new job takes a long time, a few months to decide you are going to leave, another few months to determine what you are looking for, and another few months to find it (if you are lucky.)  Best case scenario is six months.  But when life throws a curve ball your way, you may need to pivot in order to speed up that process.

Depending on what you do professionally, you might have the opportunity to find other work.  This could be temporary or permanent.  Maybe you are raising a family and work on reopening by day, but need to generate income at night.   Maybe there was one income earner before the crises, but now one partner needs to get back in the work force.  Despite the doom and gloom of the media, and stats on unemployment (mostly true), that doesn’t mean it’s the end of the world.

Here is some alternate work you can do:

  1. Customer relations by phone

  2. Telemarketing, for business (and also for political campaigns)

  3. Delivery, not just for local restaurants or international shipping, but also for local businesses delivering flowers, gifts, shoes (pretty much anything one will buy by phone or over the internet)

  4. Restaurants, though many are closed to walk-in dine-in business, some are seeing a great demand for curbside pick-up and delivery, sometimes greater than their normal volume

  5. Industrial cleaning companies, which are contracting with nearly every business reopening and need to follow a particular CDC protocol, so some of these companies need more staff

These are ideas I had sitting in a quiet room with a legal pad.  For real opportunities, check out this Kiplinger article from last week, which explains over 460,000 jobs open at 37 companies. 

If you take a moment to pivot, and see what opportunities lie ahead, you could advance down field, score, or block, but what you will NOT be doing is sitting on the bench watching everyone else in the game.

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