One of the joys of doing the work we do at Après is that we get to meet people at companies who are committed to our mission to stop sidelining women talent. These are often individuals who have created programs and roles designed to bring women talent back into the workforce.

The women on our panel webinar this week were a shining example of leaders like this at Bank of America, who shared these secrets to success to be a successful returnee and candidate during a job search:

  1. When in doubt, challenge yourself. Take a chance. ~ Lynne M. Fairbanks, Senior Vice President, D&I Consultant, focused on the Global Women’s Talent Strategy, Bank of America
  2. Remember the value of incremental progress. Maybe that one conversation didn’t go exactly how you wanted it to go, but you had the conversation. Have another conversation. You never know what doors will open. ~ Manisha Kumar, Director serves as a credit officer in Global Markets Credit, within Wholesale Credit and successful returnee, Bank of America
  3. Get comfortable with being uncomfortable. Be flexible, be adaptable, be open to feedback, all the while having confidence in the abilities that you’re bringing to the table. ~ Luz Lambertus, Senior Vice President, D&I Talent Acquisition Manager, Global Banking & Markets, Bank of America

This team, who is hiring for the Bank of America Back to Work program, a 12 week training program, also gave insight into how to stand out as a candidate, whether you’re a returnee or simply seeking career change:

  1. Let go of any worries about a resume gap.
  2. Be prepared for situational interview questions that show your ability to think critically or how you might get from A to B to C.
  3. Stay centered on your purpose and value.
  4. Put your PTA work on your resume. Your volunteer work matters!
  5. Highlight accomplishments and value add on a resume.
  6. List your transferable skills at the top.
  7. Understand the line of business you’re applying to.
  8. Find ways to show your intellectual curiosity.

Remember that while you’re applying to a specific role, the interviewer is thinking about the longer view of how you could grow and progress within the organization. The team also advised prospective candidates to explore the external footprint of a company — what are they doing to help women outside of the company, in addition to inside?

And lastly, really think about the type of organization you want to join. Big ones with resources and tools to support your career but also may not move as quickly or could be more rigid than a smaller organization. Both have value, you just need to know what’s best for you!

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