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Bouncing Back after a Job Loss

By Rachelle M. Lappinen

For the past two weeks, I had the opportunity to take an exciting new “Job Readiness Training, with an Australian Twist,” called Bounce, which has really helped me bounce back into my job search…

This is program is not your average career readiness training, and goes far beyond the usual resume, cover letter and interviewing skills that most programs offer. The founder, Maria Smith describes it as: “We are really bringing in a layer of emotional intelligence. This is a buzzword in terms of corporate America. Anyone can learn a skill, but it’s hard to teach social awareness, to show how to act in all kinds of social interactions.” Participants in this program in Australia have seen 85% success rate in securing jobs, and the program has been very successful here in Worcester, MA over the last two years. Unfortunately, this program has only rolled out to Worcester, MA.

What has this program done for my job search? Well, from the start, for myself and the other seven participants, we found that we were able to built a very strong rapport and a bond from the start. Rapport building is very important on a job search, especially in networking, where more than 75% of jobs are found. This program not only has helped me feel more at ease in building rapport in networking situations and in interviews, but through this training, I have build a strong job search team with my fellow bouncers. We hold each other accountable and encourage each other. The bond we have built in just two weeks is amazing. We continue to keep in contact through a private Facebook group, and we plan to meet on a weekly basis.

Another way the training helped, is it has give me the tools to get over blocks or barriers in my job search. Unemployment and especially long term unemployment, very often leads depression or a feeling that there is something wrong with the job seeker. The current job market is still very much an employer’s market, and as that is the case, employers are making choices based more on fit and less on a match of skills and experience. With the job placements based more on fit, and less on skills, job seekers often come to feel that their lack of success in a job search is due to a self flaw. This has been demonstrated in many research findings, such as a recent study by Dr.Ofer Sharone, professor and researcher at MIT, research, which I am proud to say, I have been a part of, (see page 589 for my name).

A third way that this training has helped, has been the ability to find anchors that I can use to face stressful situations. When going into an interview, I practice mysuperwoman pose to help build my confidence, and I use my anchors to leave any blocks at the door. For me, a big block has been the loss of my last job, which at the time, I thought was my dream job. I kept asking why. I now know, I need to leave that at the door. I am better off now. I have finally realized that everything happens for a reason. My last job ended because I was ultimately meant to meet my fellow bouncers and to find work that is meaningful to me. I am one and the same with the work I do and the way that I live my life; they are not separate.

Since my training, I have found two consultant opportunities that I am very excited about, and I will share details in a future blog and on my LinkedIn profile, so please stay tuned. I am excited, as I will be doing will help improve outcomes for the Long Term Unemployed. Additionally, I believe that these projects will lead to my next job. In any case, they are giving me recent and relevant work experience, a ability to network in my field and a chance to make a difference.

Rachelle Lappinen is a career coach and education advocate for MassEdco. Before joining MassEdco, Rachelle has worked at Mount Wachusett Community College, the YWCA and Becker as a Career Development Counselor. Before becoming entering the field of workforce development, Rachelle spent over 10 years working as an insurance underwriter.


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Everyone will benefit, Bounce is incredible. Programs could have mock interviews with more rapport and how we could benefit to work in teams at work. We loved everything we went over! Wouldn’t change a thing.

I took away a new family, a support group who will always be there to pick us up if we need motivation from our Bounce Tool Box. We already have it in our heads. I feel on top of the world and ready to take action into the workforce and personal life.

Bounce is amazing! Keep up the great work! Be happy, smile often, keep your head up you’re on top of the world.

Nicole Rogers

The feedback from my peers was a major milestone/life changing event. I heard truthful comments about my skills and qualities. This was, for me, a new foundation, a starting point for a new life.

Karak LeTreize

The program is great as it is. One of the positive experiences I took away from the class session was to build rapport and to be myself and know that I’m capable to do anything I want to do in life. This program was an eye opener and me realize life is too short and we should enjoy it and complete our goals and make the best of it. Mad me believe more in myself.

Kassandra Robles, 17

Bounce USA can focus more on feedback after real interviews and fill the gap between workshops and real life challenges. Building rapport was the positive experience. It’s not only me, but it is one that stands out for me. If it could be more than 2 weeks, it would be wonderful.

Abdelkrim Benouda

I have honestly learned that negative things are not going to define me. “Hate is in the eyes of the enemy fact really is that the world is our enemy but we’ll be fine either way”

Abriana Archibald

I think I would benefit from further Bounce USA programs. From the class sessions, I learned about rapport which is being in sync with others around you. By using rapport we can connect with others. Bounce USA has given me more insight on who I am, what I value and how I can be more of a leader. I really enjoyed this program.

Alexa Mac-Quaye

The fact that I truly mattered. Also, the dynamics of the group, and that we all care and support each other. I enjoyed Roy and Cheryl’s compassion in allowing each one of us to be heard and truly cared about.

Kellie Turner

Its not always good to just think one way (your way) because their can be a better situation or solution on the problem. Always’s be honest, everybody or most people want the best for you, don’t keep it inside to bubble up and let it explode in your mind and can trigger a negative or positive outcome. ‘Rapport’ ‘Don’t fake it until you make it’.

Antonio Jones, 19

I have always been reluctant to show my heart. I was told by my friends at Bounce that it is okay to share. I learned that it is okay. I have developed EQ awareness

Aruna Tikaare

It helped me build personal confidence, which is monumental for me. I enjoyed the experience and and helpful others as well as myself build upon leadership skills.

George Goodrich Jr

It gave an opportunity to meet new people and make connection. Being in this program I learn a few thing that I didn’t know or understand before. A really great program,I hope you guys give other people or students the great experience I receive being here.

Melanio Vargas

Great network with others that attended Bounce.
Experiencing my world through other’s eyes was very enlightening.

Janet Johnson

Change is good and there are kind, generous people who do not judge.Thank you for giving me support and courage!

Sonya Rastad

I lost the sense of isolation that I think naturally comes with being away from the workforce for any length of time. Building a new network of colleagues and being encouraged to seek out members from my existing ones was very helpful in rebuilding self-esteem.
Thank you!

Wiley O'Connor

I learned the skills that will allow me to become a leader in my community.

Benjamin Darling

If there are any other programs run by Bounce USA that are anything like this, count me in please! I took away more confidence from all the positive reinforcements given by fellow participators and the Bounce instructor. Being in the Bounce program opened my mind to a world of possibilities. I really wish that other people I know had the opportunity to learn what I’ve learned in this program and i feel so extremely fortunate to have been apart of it.

Sabrina Martino


We’d love to hear from anyone that’s done a Bounce Program! If you’ve got something to say, click the button below and send us your completely private feedback!