Great Careers Groups Career Transition The Reality of Unemployment

The Reality of Unemployment

The Reality of Unemployment

Let’s focus on the bottom rung of Maslow’s Hierarchy of  Needs, namely physiological needs – food, water, warmth, rest, and air. Yes, air … air to breathe. We all need these. Many of us have had the carpet pulled right out from under our feet in the past week. There is nothing but uncertainty that lies ahead regarding unemployment.

Let’s discuss unemployment. The Department of Labor Statistics reports the monthly unemployment rate using the U3 and not all six measures of unemployment like they did from 1950 to 2010. The U3 includes the people who are actively looking for a job. The U6 the real unemployment number. It includes those who are unemployed, underemployed, have stopped looking for work, or are long term unemployed who cannot find work, or may have bought or started a business because they could not find a job.

So, before the world changed in March, the real unemployment rate for February 2020, according to ShadowStats, was 21.1%. Save that link and keep a watch on it, especially since the U3 is around 3.9% and projected to go to about 20%. You can do the math and projections for what the U6 might be like down the road.

If you find yourself as a newly displaced worker, here is the link to PA CareerLink so you can get information on unemployment compensation. See the schedule below for our online support meetings as well as online trainings. Everything we offer is currently free, though a suggested small donation for speaker meetings is always appreciated to support our nonprofit if you are not a Bronze member.

If  you need to accelerate your job search on a tight budget or manage your career, explore our resources that include links for remote work.

If you are a small business with questions, contact the local SCORE chapter in your locale. They can share resources with you from the SBA: Chester & Delaware County or Montgomery County or TriCounty.

If you are employed and have the means to pay it forward, think how you can: 1) support family and friends in need, 2) the most vulnerable, 3) nonprofits, 4) places of worship, 5) anyone who is self-employed, etc.

In the meantime, do the right thing and stay home and stay safe to keep yourself and others safe and pray that our scientists can produce a cure.



Lynne M. Williams is the Executive Director of the Great Careers Groups, a volunteer-run 501(c)3 nonprofit organization that provides career development and networking connections for 1) job seekers in career transition, including veterans, and 2) employed and self-employed for career management.

Aside from writing keyword-focused content for ATS resumes and LinkedIn™ profiles, Lynne is writing her doctoral dissertation on LinkedIn™ for Job Seekers. She is a contributing author on “Applying to Positions” in Find Your Fit: A Practical Guide to Landing the Job You Love, along with the late Dick Bolles, the author of What Color is Your Parachute?, and is also a speaker on career topics.