Blogs

An Important Announcement from iRelaunch

Dear iRelaunch Members:

 

After over 10 years working together with Carol, first writing Back on the Career Track, and then establishing iRelaunch, I have decided to leave iRelaunch at the end of this year to focus full time on my executive search business, VSR Advisors. 

 

I have really enjoyed building iRelaunch with Carol and helping to change the conversation around career reentry. I am very proud of what Carol and I have accomplished. When we first started working together, our goal was to destigmatize career breaks and make it easier for people to return to the workforce after time at home. We set out to accomplish this by working both sides of the equation - by helping those on career break develop and execute a strategic and practical return-to-work plan and by highlighting to employers the advantages of hiring from the returning professional talent pool. Happily, as a result of our Conferences, Boot Camps, FastTrack events, book, webinars and presentations for other organizations, we have helped thousands of individuals around the world get back to work they love. I also believe that it is in part thanks to our efforts that at least half a dozen companies have set up Return to Work programs specifically to recruit from the at-home pool.

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A Relauncher Asks: "1 week until my relaunch! Any wisdom for easing my preschool aged kids’ transition as I go from SAHM of 5 years to working full time?"

By Carol Fishman Cohen

We just received this great question on our LinkedIn group from relauncher Vicki Harrison, who is about to return to a full-time role at Stanford University School of Medicine after five years at home. She is also the founder of The Flex Frontier website which provides resources for those seeking flexible work. Here’s my answer:

Vicki: Thanks for asking this question! You want to get your preschoolers invested alongside you when you return to work so here are some thoughts on how to involve them:

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Relaunchers selected for Commonwealth of Massachusetts Women's Leadership Fellowship Program!

We are thrilled to announce that several relaunchers are among those selected for the new public policy Women’s Leadership Fellowship Program offered by Governor Deval Patrick’s office as part of his Women in the Workplace Initiative. The Initiative “will underscore the key role all working women play in business and the economic success of the Commonwealth by growing the pipeline of women poised to fill high-level positions in both the public and private sectors, and examining policy steps the Commonwealth can take to advance women in the workplace from across the economic spectrum.”

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Over 550 Attendees at 17th iRelaunch Return to Work Conference in NYC

iRelaunch held its 17th Return to Work Conference at Columbia University's Lerner Hall with 550 attendees and 19 corporate and university sponsors. The high-energy crowd was riveted by the presentations, starting with Morgan Stanley Chief Human Resources Officer Jeff Brodsky recounting his childhood moment when his own mother returned to work after staying home for years.  iRelaunch co-founders Vivian Steir Rabin and Carol Fishman Cohen followed, telling their personal relaunch stories and then focusing on actionable, high-impact, career reentry strategy.

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"They did it and so can I!" - Angela Lee Returned to Work After Attending the iRelaunch RTW Conference

Guest Blog by Angela Lee

I always knew that I wanted to return to work. My initial plan to take a break from work for just a few years was derailed when the economy crashed in 2008. Right when I was ready to go back to work, nobody was hiring. Life threw me a few more curve balls and - long story short - I found myself staying home for eight years, not knowing how to restart my career.

Then I had coffee with someone I had volunteered with at our children's preschool. She was in a similar situation: she had had a successful career and stopped working to take care of her family. She told me that she planned to go to the iRelaunch Conference that fall and invited me to join her. I was tempted but I balked and decided I wasn't ready. The truth is that I was terrified.

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Professor Schonbrun: Your Career Can Still Be Great

by Carol Fishman Cohen

Brown Assistant Professor of Psychiatry Yael Chatav Schonbrun's recent New York Times Opinionator piece "A Mother's Ambitions" revealed her disappointment and frustration about her stunted career prospects despite the joy she is experiencing as a mother. This was the result of a personal decision she made to allocate a higher percentage of time and mental energy to be with her children and a lower percentage to her academic career. She is afraid she has permanently derailed herself professionally.

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"I'm Officially a Relauncher, and Loving It!" Angela Parauda Returns to Work After Attending the iRelaunch RTW Conference

Guest Blog by Angela Parauda

I had been home for almost a decade raising my three children when I attended the iRelaunch Return to Work Conference in New York last year.  It was not only informative, but offered excellent motivation and inspiration. I continue to share with friends who have the same dream of returning to work, the iRelaunch Conference is worth attending!

As we all know, relaunching a career doesn't happen overnight. It was a process taking many months, including the exercise of creating a resume, reconnecting with former colleagues, learning the importance of Linkedin, etc.

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The Secret Weapon for Tech Updating: YouTube

by Carol Fishman Cohen

For those of us who have been out of the workforce for a while, the tech update is one of the biggest challenges of career reentry. Employers expect us to arrive with a working knowledge of Excel, PowerPoint, Word, and basic office management software.  Online tech courses such as Lynda.com can be great resources, as can Community Education courses.  Even a well-placed ad in the local high school newsletter can produce a teenager eager for a part-time tech updating job using knowledge she's had since elementary school.  But the most powerful tech updating tool of all is YouTube.

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