Job Search - 6 Tips to Boost Your Campaign
by Dale Kurow
Does your job search feel like a big weight on your shoulders?
Are you confused about what you should do next?
Do you have starts and stops in your search activities?
Are you beating yourself up because you haven't done enough?
Okay, first things first.
Conducting a job search can be overwhelming under the best of circumstances.
Add to that a full time job, kids and/or other pressing responsibilities, and it gets even trickier.
And the higher you are on the food chain, the longer it takes to find your next position.
On top of all those pressures, are you making things worse by what you're telling yourself?
Clients beat themselves up because they don't feel up to the task.
There's too much information and they don't know where to start, so they do little and then give up.
Or they berate themselves because they haven't done "enough." Time for a reality check!
Here are some tips to keep it real:
• Set realistic standards and expectations. If you have locked-in time commitments (full-time job, kids, etc.), you need to be extra careful in planning your activities. Set weekly goals that you can comfortably meet. Under-promise and then, if you do more, you'll be happy with your progress.
• Learn to wait gracefully. Do you want it all now? Ahhh, if only. . . Deal with your impatience! The older I get, the more I realize the importance of being patient. Nothing happens overnight. All those folks who made it big spent years building, waiting and never giving up. Allow your career plan the time it needs to unfold.
• Have a plan. Before you take step one, what are your career goals? A new job? Positioning yourself for promotion? What's your timetable? I can't stress enough the importance of a written plan. That way you'll see the steps you need to take, can check off your accomplishments, and keep track of your progress. Remember to celebrate your wins.
• Don't put the cart before the horse. Can you compellingly and succinctly describe what you want? Don't expect people (recruiters, your networking contacts, friends, etc.) to connect the dots. Until you can easily articulate the kind of job you want and what you'd like to be doing, networking will be a wasted opportunity.
• Write a resume only after you are clear about your job goals. I get calls from prospective clients saying, "I need a new resume." After a few minutes of conversation, they admit they're unsure of their next career move. They expect a new resume to replace the pre-work they haven't done. Your resume should reflect your carefully thought out career objective.
• Find a committed listener and have them hold you accountable. You will accomplish more and feel better if you have a trusted friend to talk to on a consistent basis. This person can be a sounding board and can give you support when you hit a speed bump.
We spend our lives trying to reach our goals. Yet, the time we actually spend reveling in our achievement is minimal. Aren't you always thinking about the next thing you want? By accepting that your job search is a process that happens over time, you give yourself permission to relax and enjoy what's in front of you today.
Dale Kurow, M.S., is an author and a career and executive coach in NYC. Dale works with clients across the U.S. and internationally, helping them to become better managers, figure out their next career moves and thrive despite office politics. Visit Dale's web site at http://www.dalekurow.com/newsletter to sign-up for her free monthly ezine "Career Essentials," chock-full of useful career tips and strategies you can use immediately.
Dale Kurow may be contacted at http://www.dalekurow.com or firstname.lastname@example.org