Friday, January 8, 2010

High gear job search in the new year

When I started this article I thought the use of car analogies for your high gear job search was clever. The more I wrote, the more I lost control and was no longer in the driver’s seat. So, I think I’ll get them all out of the way, right up front.

Has your job search stalled?

Have you been idling or moving along in low gear? If so, what will fuel a smooth ride ahead?

The mechanics of “Getting Back on Track and Avoiding Burnout:”

  • 1. Put the pedal to the metal
  • 2. Change the oil
  • 3. Know and trust your pit crew to keep you motivated and accountable

Has holiday stress and job search over the past months caused serious burnout? The holiday season is enough to make the most organized and festive person want to escape to an island of bliss and never plan another event, attend another party, or step foot in another store. Add to this the emotional burden of a simultaneous job search. If your productivity has dropped and you don’t know what to do next, start with a review of your recent activities.

Many job seekers took themselves out of the market because they felt employers weren’t thinking about hiring. For those of you who used holiday functions as a networking tool to meet new people and explore possibilities, kudos to you! Many of you also embraced the holiday spirit and engaged employers during informational meetings.

It’s 2010 and time to capitalize on possibilities you uncovered during the holidays and revisit activities that worked in the past and those that didn’t. It may be time to take an inventory, reinvent your jobsearch action plan and perhaps yourself.

  • 1. Change your mindset and attitude. If you’ve been pessimistic and have little hope and faith, find something you can be grateful for each day. It may be difficult but seek out something positive; it’s the only way to stay on top of your game. Be grateful in the moment. Figure out what motivates you and be sure to integrate this with your plan.
  • 2. Think outside the box. Are you still visiting the same job boards, talking to the same people, checking the same listings and focusing on the same companies and industries? If so, mix it up. Cast the net wide and expose yourself to new companies and industries, and perhaps even a new role. Some of you may try temping. It’s a way to bring in extra cash, meet new people and be introduced to new companies. You might even learn some new skills.

  • 3. Let go of old behaviors. Did you spend too much time hiding behind your computer to avoid networking? Examine past routines that led nowhere and replace them with new techniques. Inaction is understandable but shortsighted because a job won’t magically appear. And there’s no time left for self-pity. It is time to reflect, leap and reinvent.

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