Starting a New Career in Uncertain Times

The job market globally is grim and not much different here in Japan but with all the bad news surrounding us, there are positives that people should remember. 

(Graph:  Number of new job offers in Japan dropped significantly in July 2020)


During my recent tracking of notifications on Linked In,  I was curious about the higher than normal increase in the number of people starting new jobs so I decided to reach out to several people in my network that had started new jobs (over the last 3 months) and found some surprising data as well as some good stories.

As I was going through the notifications, (about 50 in total over the last 3 months) I became more interested as to how they got their jobs and what their experience was during the process. 

Some of the notifications were people that were internally promoted which is also positive  and some were people that started the interview process pre-covid but these people were not included in the data.


(Personal Survey:  People in my network that had started new jobs in the past 3 months)


One pattern I noticed was that there was an increase in the number of candidates being contacted directly from companies which is a sign of the times.  

In just a few short months, we have gone from a candidate-driven market to a COVID-driven market and now direct hire companies have the upper hand with recruiting.  

However, it seemed that the larger companies (Tier 1) were more active on the direct hiring whereas the smaller companies and startups were relying more on agency recruiters to introduce jobs.

While there were many people that had been in the interview process and the process was stopped or delayed, other companies that were quick and had a clear hiring process in place closed the deal.  



Candidates that are looking to change jobs or pivot their careers should stay positive and proactive.  While the market may be difficult, it is not impossible so people need to use as many resources as they can to gain an edge.

That means proactively reaching out to recruiters and hiring managers to engage in conversations and start getting a better feel for organizations and what they can offer you for your next stage.

“I was in the interview process with 2 companies (3rd interviews) but both companies froze their hiring and asked me to stay in touch but another company reached out to me directly and hired me within 1.5 months.  I started a week ago.”

So no matter how bad the market seems and how grim other people view the situation, there are always positives and it was great to know so many people were able to land new careers.  

Rule #1:  Always Stay Positive and Productive

If you are a professional that is looking for advice on your current career path or just want to chat, please register on our site and we are happy to reach out and offer support.


For more insight and advice on work-related issues, check out our website at or follow us on our social media channels.


Listen to a Podcast Related to this Article