Preparing resumes, writing cover letters, and going on interviews are a snap compared to the painful isolation and loneliness of unemployment. Am I right? Losing a job, regardless of the reason, results in facing big challenges without the support, encouragement, group thinking, and friendship of your former colleagues. That hurts. And who do you talk to about the problems that occur during your job search?
Job Clubs are appearing all over the country in response to this issue. Different from networking groups where the focus is on gaining contacts and leads, they are trying to make up for the loss of the advice, sharing, and camaraderie that you had at work. You can still network, but the emphasis is on a small, informal group of people that gets together to share and attack the obstacles that crop up while looking for work.
According to a report on Good Morning America,” job clubs are rooted in the belief that each member has something valuable to contribute and that everyone benefits from the advice and encouragement from the diverse group dynamic. “ Think buddies to partner with, share advice and tools, and cheer each other on.
Job clubs exist in greater Hartford. Look for them at churches, synagogues, community centers, libraries, job centers, meet-ups, and private homes. You can network to find others, or start one yourself. Here are a few to check out:
The Emanual Synagogue in West Hartford has a job club that welcomes both members and non-members. The club is facilitated by Cookie Melitto, who has an M.S in Counseling and is trained in employment and training facilitation. They meet at 10:00 AM on Tuesday mornings. For more information, contact Cookie Melitto directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The You’re Hired Re-employment Strategies Meet-up in Vernon is another small group. Look on www.meetup.com. Dan Dionne, a really nice guy, runs the group.
The Avon Farmington Valley Reemployment Group meets at Saint Ann’s Roman Catholic Church every Wednesday from 7-9 pm. Contact Brian Jud at email@example.com or call 860-673-7650.
So there you go. If you know of other job clubs, I’d love to hear from you.