At some point in your career you’re going to have to go through the rollercoaster that is job hunting. From hours spend scrolling job search websites, to filling out the same type of application form again and again, to going to several interviews, you’re going to have a wild ride that will end in locking down that perfect fit. While it isn’t always roses (yes, some of us get lucky and land the perfect new job with the first application) you can thrive and survive the entire hunt by implementing these key strategies and tips.
- Get ready to start applying for your next job by updating your resume and practicing your interview skills. Once you’re ready to step into career transition mode, spend an afternoon with your resume and give it a much-needed refresh and review before you even click on the search bar on your favorite job-hunting site. Since it also has been a while since you were in the interview room, you need to take the time to brush up on interview do’s and don’ts and practice with a trusted member of your network by holding mock interview sessions with your own questions, or by snagging our free interview questions to use.
- Reassess your current skill set and identify which ones are the strongest and which bring you the most joy. By doing this you will have your skills and abilities at the forefront of your mind before you begin reading dozens of job descriptions, and you can use this career transition time to truly see where your joy and talents lie, and find the right kind of job that offers you the ability to shine with those skills.
- Flex those skills on Linkedin by updating (or creating) your Linkedin profile. Give it a boost by adding your newly refreshed resume details into it, a newly updated photo, and by creating more connections with a wider audience than before. Linkedin is also an amazing resource to use to find a new job, so be sure to turn on the proper settings that tell recruiters you are available for new job opportunities. Be sure to include key words in your bio and resume that reflect the kinds of connections you want to make and searches you’d like to come up in so that you can easily be seen by the right recruiters.
- If your job hunt is occurring because you currently are not employed (whether by choice or not) relieve some financial stress and anxiety by picking up some quick shifts at a part-time entry-level position- such as a barista, waitress, cashier, etc. While it may seem silly to hunt for a temporary job while hunting for a full time career position, for those who didn’t have the ability to save up several months’ worth of salary or are anxious about digging into it, working a few hours a week to bring in money to cover the gas it takes to get from interview to interview can alleviate some stress. Just be sure that if you do go ahead and get a part-time “gap filler” job that it doesn’t impose on your ability to find a new full-time job.
- Invest your spare time in personal development, not Netflix. We know, Netflix is a blackhole of attention where all productivity and free time go to die, but when you’re trying to find a new job you have to also adapt and update your skill sets to make you a viable candidate for all of the positions you’re applying for. Search for free, or paid, online and in-person courses and seminars to build your skills (and be sure to add them to your resume!). Plus, in person personal development events are a great place to find like-minded people who want to grow their network, too, and just might have a great job available for you.
- Be sure to focus a lot of your time on your mental health. Going through a career transition and trying to find a new job, especially if this change is not voluntary, is tough and trying- especially when you put yourself out there and get rejected or ghosted (just like when it comes to dating, rejection sucks) takes a toll on your self esteem and confidence. So take those much needed breaks, shut your laptop down, stop staring at your phone waiting for ‘the call’, and take a few minutes each day to breathe and focus on yourself and remind yourself of how talented, amazing, strong, and great you are.
- If time allows for even a few hours a month, sign up to volunteer for your favorite organizations and charities- while giving back to the community may not directly open career doors for you or help you find your next job, it is always important to make volunteering a priority. Plus, if giving back to the community that helped you grow isn’t reason enough to do some charity work, recruiters really enjoy seeing those things on resumes.
- Never be afraid to put your network to work. When you have established connections the worst thing you can do is never turn to them out of fear of asking for help or guidance. You’ve built a strong network for a reason, so go use them- ask for help in job hunting, help prepping for interviews or reviewing your resume, or ask them if they can pass along a good word for you. Your network is there to help, so use them.
As you’re looking for your next big step, you’re going to hit roadblocks and go through some tough times, always remember that your value and worth don’t come from a paycheck or your job status- so get out there, apply for that job you’re not fully qualified for, thank folks for their time even when they tell you no, and make that much needed career move. You got this.