I have been on a maternity career break for 3 yrs. I am professionally qualified with 6 yrs. of experience. However when I apply for jobs:

  1. My career break doesn't get me interview
  2. I am not being considered for mid-management roles. I do have team management experience as well.

How should I portray my skills and experience to get mid management level roles.

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    I think we need more information here. How are you currently portraying your skills? What sorts of positions are you applying for (broad range or targeted, level that you were before or higher/lower, etc)? What do you talk about in your cover letter? How are you sure that it's the career break that is causing you not to get an interview? Please edit your question to provide more information, if you can. – jcmeloni Aug 27 '13 at 16:15
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    I would say you should perhaps look at non-management update your experience, it seems, you might have to reset your experience. – Donald Aug 27 '13 at 16:54
  • To start off with, I think it'd be helpful to know exactly what you've told people and exactly what they've said in response. Even using the phrase Maternity career break sounds sort of odd. – dcaswell Aug 27 '13 at 17:49

A three year break is a long time especially in some industries where the rate of change is much faster than that. You may need to scale back what role you are looking for until you get some updated experience. I have to be honest with you, a 3 year beak and only 6 years of experience is not generally what I would find as a plus in a potential hire for those jobs.

You have to have something that will make you stand out over candidates with more recent experience. You may need to get some recent training to show people you are up-to-speed or some higher level volunteer work that could show you can handle the higher level management tasks if you can find some related to the field you are trying to break back into. You will need to do a better job of selling yourself in a cover letter by really focusing in one what you have that would make you preferable to what other candidates might have.

At a mid-level management job, I would expect you might have better luck in building a network of professional contacts to get people to consider you. These jobs are often hired through the informal friends network rather than being advertised. So get out and do some work for the Chamber of Commerce or other local organizations where high level managers will be (they often support the arts too, so think about your local museum or concert hall as a place to make contacts) and get to know them and show them you can do the job through your volunteer work. Socialize and shmooze with the people you want to hire you.

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    And it's not right and shouldn't be (isn't) allowed, but spending a third of your career on a maternity break will hold you back for a management role (let alone the changing environment). I think you may have to get a role a step down to both prove your technical (or legal or whatever is your industry) ability, and build back up. The sad fact is that in this day an age it's still easier for a man stuck on a desert island for 3 years to get a role than a woman on maternity. – The Wandering Dev Manager Aug 27 '13 at 16:49
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    @MarkChapman - To be fair the break could have been for any reason and people would have still given the author the stink eye about having 1/3 of their career missing. A man in theory could have taken maternity break ( the allows for this in some cases ) and the same experience would (should) be had – Donald Aug 27 '13 at 16:57
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    true, however I'd be worried about a man taking maternity, it would be Paternity in this case :) I think Arnie in Junior was the last man to take maternity! – The Wandering Dev Manager Aug 27 '13 at 17:04

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