Starting a job search can be confusing – perhaps you haven’t done it in a while, you may not know what you want, you may not be sure what to say, and you may be just plain stuck on what to do first. Do you wonder if there is some magical element out there that you are missing to land that next great job?
Here are some SECRETS that may help you add some magic into your job search:
1. Job Search is not always linear.
Many job seekers take a linear approach to job search: create a resume, apply for jobs online, wait to hear, go on an interview, wait to hear, send out more resumes. They are afraid to deviate from this steady, secure, path. Sticking to a linear search, however, is a missed opportunity to go forward. It is not secure because the job seeker is passively waiting to hear ANY news, and in the end, may not hear at all. That is lost time in a search.
Using a “multi-channel” search strategy, the job seeker can proactively create opportunities for job leads and interviews. Such channels should include networking, volunteering, and enriching skills or knowledge.
2. Job Ads represent only 25% of open Jobs
If you are only applying to jobs online, then you are missing out on 75% of jobs out there. These exist in the hidden network – jobs not yet being advertised or jobs that do not exist yet. Perhaps a manager has a need but has not yet formulated a job per say. Maybe a savvy recruiter is sleuthing contacts but not revealing a specific position. There may be someone in your network who knows you would be the right person for a job but they have no idea you are even looking.
3. Career management is a life long process, not just something you do when in transition
There is a myth out there that you only need to worry about your career when you need a job. The reality is that you need to be on top of this all the time. When you have job stability, ensure that you are providing value every day for your employer. Record your achievements – save performance appraisals, save emails with compliments and recommendations, track your projects, and their impact. Think about ways to improve your skills or knowledge. Then, when you need a job, you have built a foundation to dig into.
4. Maintain a strong network – stay connected and visible.
Get involved in professional associations in your field. Volunteer. Try to helpful to others – be a resource. Make yourself available to junior level people in need of guidance or advice. This lays the groundwork for strong relationships and provides a safe zone for reaching out to others when you are in need.
5. Social Media is your friend – or maybe not?
Some people are totally afraid of social media and are missing out on the many benefits during job search. Others are overusing social media, putting their personal life out there for the world to see. Employers are in fact making hiring decisions based on what is out there. It’s important to be professional and to use privacy controls on personal sites like Facebook – but know that like anything else on the Internet, you never know if your content is totally private.
LinkedIn is one of the most valuable social tools during job search. Build a powerful profile that conveys your expertise and use LinkedIn to find others you made want to reach out to. Always personalize the messages you send to others and provide a way to engage with them. Join “groups” that relate to your areas of expertise and be sure to answer questions when you have the expertise to share.
Magic doesn’t happen by itself – you have to create it. All of the little things you can do really do add up. By proactively managing your career on an ongoing basis, you will have paved the way for an easier, faster search, and maybe even have your next job come to you.
About The Author
Diane Irwin creates high impact resumes and job search strategies that get results! She welcomes followers on twitter, where she tweets free job search advice @ResumesofNJ. Visit her website here.
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