Whether you have recently lost a job, or you just want to change the jobs, searching for a job can be tough and you can become easily discouraged. It is important to find the right job for you and not to rush into the wrong job because you feel pressured to take that one. Take your time and analyze the situation so you can make the best choice for you and your future.
HAVE A PLAN
Many people make the mistake of jumping head first into searching for a job without considering what it is they really want. It is important to take the time to consider your assets, determine what you do not like about various work responsibilities, what type of duties you do like performing, and what type of company you would be most comfortable working for. This is the most important first step. You will be prepared and positive, having the self-assurance you need to get the type of job you want.
CREATING THE RESUME
There are a variety of different resume formats you can use including:
- Chronological – lists work history in reverse chronological order
- Functional – focus on skills and experiences, good when you have jobs gaps
- Combination – a combination of chronological and functional types
- Targeted – customized to highlight the skills relevant to the job
The resume format you choose will depend on your job history and the type of job you are pursuing. It is important that you keep in mind the qualities about yourself that you want to portray. Concentrate on your strengths and accomplishments in previous jobs while keeping your future job plan in mind. Use positive words and remember that in this time of technology a lot of companies scan resumes for keywords so you want to use the keywords applicable to the job you are searching for.
CONDUCTING THE SEARCH
Networking – We have all heard that one of the best ways to find a job is to network. To network is to inform everyone you know that you are searching for a job. Networking can be intimidating for those who are not very outgoing. However, if you have a large group of friends and/or belong to several clubs and organizations then networking may be the key for you. It is a method that is certainly advantageous and seems to speed up the job search process.
Local sources – Visiting the job center in your area, scanning the classifieds and attending job fairs can provide insight into your local job and types of employers that are looking for employees.
Online job search engines – There are numerous websites devoted to job listings, both containing all types of jobs, as well as those specific to particular professions. You can search for professional organizations that will cater to those specific career types. Some of the most popular online engines are Career Builder, and Monster. Two of the newer ones I find to be very informative are Simply Hired and Indeed. Most importantly, do not overlook a company’s own website if you have a specific business targeted. Many companies have career links allowing you the capability of submitting your resume and cover letter via their website.
FACING THE INTERVIEW
If you have followed the above steps to prepare yourself for your job search, you should be getting calls for interviews. Practicing interviewing with a friend can help your confidence and nervousness. Remember to be yourself and not to get discouraged if you are not offered the job. You want to get the job that fits you and that you will be happy with. Regardless of the way you feel following the interview, it is always a good idea to send a follow-up, personalized thank-you note. Even if they do not offer the position to you, sending a thank you note will make a positive impression, possibly keeping you in mind should a future job become available.
Persistence and patience pay off. Keep your chin up, believe in yourself, reaffirm your strengths, give it your best – and it will happen.