20 Ways to Find a Job After Running Your Own Business

Updated on: by Amy Kennedy
A job seeker being interviewed for a job

Embarking on a job search journey after managing your own business can be both exciting and challenging.

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Discovering the right path requires a comprehensive approach.

Explore these 20 strategies that can help you transition from entrepreneurship to traditional employment seamlessly.

20 Ways to Find a Job After Running Your Own Business

Transitioning from being a business owner to an employee can be a complex process. Here are 20 strategies that can guide you in this new journey:

1. Assess Your Transferable Skills

Identify the skills you developed as a business owner that can be applied to a new job. Whether it’s leadership, project management, or marketing, recognizing these abilities can guide your job search.

The MySkillsFuture portal offers tools for assessing your skills, helping you understand how your entrepreneurial experience translates to new roles.

2. Update Your Resume

As a former business owner, your resume should highlight your entrepreneurial journey and the skills you gained. Tailor your resume to match the job you’re applying for, focusing on relevant aspects of your business experience that align with the desired role.

Websites like Resume Genius provide templates and guidance for creating a compelling resume that effectively communicates your background.

3. Network with Other Professionals

Leverage your existing connections and attend networking events within your industry. Engaging with professionals who understand both business ownership and employment can provide valuable insights and potential job referrals.

LinkedIn is a powerful platform for networking, allowing you to connect with professionals who share similar backgrounds and interests.

4. Seek Professional Guidance

Consider working with a career counselor or job placement agency that specializes in helping entrepreneurs transition into traditional employment. These experts can help you identify suitable positions based on your skills and preferences, providing personalized guidance tailored to your unique journey.

Agencies like Robert Half have experience in matching candidates with appropriate job opportunities.

5. Consider Temporary Positions

Temporary or freelance roles offer a bridge between business ownership and traditional employment. These opportunities allow you to explore different industries and build new skills while maintaining flexibility.

Platforms like Upwork connect freelancers with projects across various fields, giving you a chance to experience different work environments.

6. Research Target Companies

Identify companies that align with your values and business experience. Research their mission, culture, and recent developments to understand how your skills can contribute.

This research will not only help you tailor your application but also prepare you for interviews by demonstrating your genuine interest in the organization’s goals. Glassdoor provides valuable insights into company culture and employee experiences.

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7. Utilize Job Search Engines

Online job portals provide access to a wide range of job opportunities. Utilize search filters to find positions that match your skills and preferences.

Regularly checking websites like Indeed ensures that you’re aware of new openings and allows you to refine your job search over time.

8. Tailor Your Cover Letter

Craft customized cover letters for each application, highlighting how your entrepreneurial experience makes you a valuable asset to the company. Address how your skills and accomplishments uniquely position you for success in the role.

Resources like The Balance Careers offer tips and templates for creating cover letters that resonate with potential employers.

9. Prepare for Interviews

Highlight the transferable skills and experiences gained from running your own business during interviews. Emphasize how your ability to manage projects, solve problems, and take initiative aligns with the position’s requirements.

Practicing mock interviews using platforms like Pramp helps refine your responses and boost your confidence in articulating your unique journey.

10. Emphasize Soft Skills

Demonstrate how your soft skills, such as leadership, communication, and adaptability, have been honed through business ownership. Share specific examples of how these skills contributed to your success as an entrepreneur and explain how they can benefit your prospective employer.

The Mind Tools website offers resources and articles for improving soft skills, enabling you to effectively convey your strengths.

11. Consider Franchise Opportunities

If you’re still drawn to entrepreneurship, franchise opportunities offer a middle ground. Franchising allows you to leverage your business acumen within an established framework, benefiting from support and resources provided by the franchisor.

Research franchises that align with your interests and skills on platforms like The Franchise Mall, and explore options that complement your background.

12. Offer Consulting Services

Leverage your expertise by offering consulting services within your industry. This allows you to share your knowledge and experience while exploring new opportunities.

Platforms like Consulting.com offer guidance on establishing a consulting business, from setting rates to marketing your services effectively.

13. Explore Career Change

Consider pivoting to a different industry where your skills can be applied in innovative ways. While this may require additional learning, your business experience provides a foundation for adapting to new challenges.

Websites like Career Shifters provide guidance for those looking to transition to new career paths.

14. Pursue Further Education

Additional certifications or degrees can enhance your qualifications and open doors to new opportunities. Look for courses that align with your desired career path and consider online platforms like Coursera to access a variety of courses and programs.

15. Join Professional Organizations

Engaging with professional organizations in your desired field provides access to industry-specific events, networking opportunities, and potential job leads. These organizations offer a platform to connect with individuals who share your passion and professional goals.

Consider joining organizations like the American Management Association to expand your network.

16. Utilize Social Media

Leverage social media platforms to create and showcase your professional brand. Engage with industry-related content, share insights, and connect with professionals in your field.

Actively participating in discussions on platforms like Twitter and LinkedIn can enhance your visibility and demonstrate your expertise.

17. Seek Mentoring

Finding a mentor who has successfully transitioned from business ownership to traditional employment can offer valuable guidance. A mentor can provide insights into the challenges and opportunities you may encounter, helping you navigate your career transition effectively.

Organizations like SCORE offer free mentoring resources.

18. Focus on Growth Industries

Research and target industries experiencing growth, as they may have a higher demand for skilled professionals. Aligning your skills with growing sectors positions you as a valuable asset in these dynamic environments.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics provides data on industry growth trends.

19. Volunteer in Your Field

Volunteering offers an opportunity to stay active in your industry, build connections, and contribute to causes you’re passionate about.

Look for volunteer opportunities that align with your skills and interests on platforms like VolunteerMatch, allowing you to make a positive impact while expanding your network.

20. Stay Positive and Persistent

Job hunting after running a business can be challenging, but maintaining a positive attitude and staying persistent are key.

Embrace the learning process, continuously refine your approach, and use resources like motivational books or blogs to keep you inspired and motivated throughout your transition.

Top 15 Places to Find Jobs After Running Your Own Business

Transitioning from entrepreneurship to a traditional job requires a strategic approach to job hunting. Here are 15 valuable places to find job opportunities:

1. Online Job Boards and Portals

Online job boards like Indeed, Monster, and CareerBuilder aggregate job listings from various industries and locations. They provide a wide range of options, allowing you to search for positions that match your skills and preferences.

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2. LinkedIn

LinkedIn is a powerful platform for professional networking and job searching. Create a comprehensive LinkedIn profile showcasing your business experience, skills, and achievements.

Join relevant industry groups and follow companies of interest to stay updated on job openings.

3. Company Websites

Visit the official websites of companies you’re interested in. Many organizations list job openings on their “Careers” or “Jobs” pages. This approach allows you to apply directly to companies that align with your career goals.

4. Networking Events

Attend industry conferences, seminars, and networking events. These gatherings provide opportunities to connect with potential employers, learn about job openings through word of mouth, and showcase your expertise.

5. Recruitment Agencies

Recruitment agencies specialize in matching candidates with suitable job opportunities. Consider partnering with agencies relevant to your industry or skillset, such as Robert Half or Kelly Services.

6. Freelance Platforms

Platforms like Upwork and Freelancer offer freelance and contract-based opportunities across various industries. These platforms provide a bridge between self-employment and traditional employment.

7. Professional Associations

Industry-specific professional associations often post job listings on their websites. Joining these associations grants you access to job boards, networking events, and resources tailored to your field.

8. Job Fairs

Job fairs are events where multiple employers gather to showcase job opportunities. Attend local job fairs to interact with recruiters, submit resumes, and explore a variety of job options.

9. Temp Agencies

Temporary staffing agencies connect candidates with short-term or project-based assignments. These assignments offer a chance to gain experience, expand your network, and potentially secure full-time positions.

10. Industry-Specific Magazines and Websites

Trade publications and industry-specific websites often feature job listings related to their respective sectors. These sources provide targeted job opportunities within your field.

11. Government Job Boards

Government agencies, both at the federal and state levels, have job boards where they list vacancies in various departments and positions. Check websites like USAJOBS for federal opportunities.

12. Career Centers

Local career centers, often associated with universities or community colleges, offer resources for job seekers. They provide workshops, job listings, and personalized career advice.

13. Social Media

In addition to LinkedIn, platforms like Twitter and Facebook can also be used for job searching. Follow companies, industry influencers, and job boards to stay updated on new openings.

14. Alumni Networks

If you attended a college or university, tap into your alumni network for job leads. Alumni associations often share job opportunities and provide a supportive community for networking.

15. Local Business Associations

Chamber of Commerce, small business associations, and community organizations frequently collaborate with local businesses. They may have insights into job openings within your community.

What to Avoid When Looking for a Job After Running Your Own Business

Transitioning from being a business owner to seeking traditional employment requires careful planning and awareness. Here are critical pitfalls to avoid during your job search journey:

1. Neglecting Self-Reflection and Assessment

Avoid rushing into the job search process without introspection. Reflect on your strengths, weaknesses, values, and long-term goals.

Ignoring this self-assessment can lead to pursuing roles that don’t align with your true aspirations.

2. Underestimating the Transition Period

Transitioning from running a business to working as an employee can be a significant shift. Avoid underestimating the time it takes to find the right fit. The process demands patience, persistence, and an open mindset.

3. Neglecting Skill Enhancement

Don’t assume that your entrepreneurial skills alone will guarantee success in traditional employment. Stay proactive in enhancing your skillset.

Take courses, attend workshops, and adapt to the evolving demands of your desired industry.

4. Generic Applications

Avoid sending generic applications. Tailor your cover letter and resume to each role you apply for. Showcase how your entrepreneurial experiences uniquely qualify you for the specific position’s challenges.

5. Overlooking the Power of Networking

Neglecting networking is a common oversight. Leverage your connections, both old and new, to gain insights and potential job leads. Failing to tap into your network could mean missing out on hidden opportunities.

6. Neglecting Your Digital Presence

Your online presence matters. Update and optimize your LinkedIn profile to reflect your professional journey. Ensure consistency across platforms and remove any content that may not align with your professional image.

7. Undervaluing Transferable Skills

Don’t undervalue the skills gained as a business owner. Skills like leadership, problem-solving, and adaptability are universally valuable and can set you apart in the job market.

8. Downplaying Soft Skills

Avoid downplaying soft skills. Effective communication, emotional intelligence, and collaboration remain vital in any role. Highlight examples that demonstrate your proficiency in these areas.

9. Being Inflexible in Job Preferences

Avoid rigidly adhering to a particular job title or industry. Your entrepreneurial experience equips you with diverse skills applicable in various domains. Be open to exploring new avenues.

10. Ignoring Adaptability

Failing to adapt can hinder your transition. Embrace a new identity as an employee and align with the company’s culture. Showcase your capacity to blend seamlessly into a collaborative team environment.

11. Underestimating the Value of Networking Events

Attending networking events is not enough; engage actively. Forge authentic connections by showing genuine interest in others. Meaningful relationships often lead to referrals and unearthing unadvertised job openings.

Wrap Up

Transitioning from business ownership to a job seeker’s role requires a strategic roadmap.

By employing these 20 approaches, you’re equipped to discover a fitting job opportunity that leverages your entrepreneurial expertise.

Embrace this new chapter with confidence and purpose.

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