So, you’re unemployed. How do you address that fact when you’re out and about – like at parties, or on a date? Here are some tips for answering questions about unemployment, from career coach Marie McIntyre:

  • Like, when you meet someone new, and they ask: “So, what do you do?” Our expert says it’s absolutely okay to deflect the question, and say something like: “That’s not the happiest topic right now. Let’s talk about something else.” Or just smile and change the subject, by saying: “So, have you seen the movie ‘Lincoln’?”

  • Next, what if someone asks: “You’ve been out of work for a while, haven’t you? What’s going on?” McIntyre says whatever you do, avoid complaining about your job search because you never know who might be able to help you find a job.  And you don’t want a potential job lead to walk away with a bad impression of you. So, when someone asks about your job hunt, say: “It’s gone on longer than I’d like, but I’ve had some good interviews and I’m optimistic. And in the meantime, I’ve been doing some volunteer work”.

  • And what if someone says something really inappropriate, like “I hope that’s not the suit you wear to interviews. No wonder you’re unemployed!”  Just deflect the comment with: “You know, those appetizers over there look great. I’m going to get something to eat. Nice to see you”.