The thing about job search that many people don’t realize is that it can take a really long time – far longer than you ever imagined. But I’m betting that you already are starting to suspect that if you found this article.
Even if you do absolutely everything right, it just takes time – at least in most cases. There are always exceptions, but for the majority of job seekers, it helps to set your sights (and budget) on an extended job search.
Why would it help my job search to know this?
On one hand, setting your mind on the possibility of a long job search might mean that you don’t feel any need to put your full effort into it NOW.
But what I want you to know is that even if you have the greatest qualifications and do everything right, there is a second part of the formula: what happens on the employer side. Something you just can’t control.
So you need to work even harder on the parts you can control:
- knowing what you want (vague ideas lead to weak results)
- knowing who you are, including strengths and weaknesses
- targeting your resume to each job
- targeting your cover letter to each job
- using multiple sources and methods to find jobs (including going after unlisted jobs)
- brushing up on skills and / or adding new experiences that might strengthen your chances
- targeting and researching those companies and industries that you especially want
- wise use of social media
Things that might get in your way as you look for that job
In working with clients, one of the things that comes up most often is the self doubt monster. Even after making the decision to start looking, job seekers often begin to second guess themselves. Or overthink each and every aspect of their job history and skills. Or, at the very heart of it, question whether any employer would even want them. And this stalls your full-out efforts.
So I want to ask you to take all those doubts and questions and give them the weight they deserve. Yes … you need to know what you have to offer. Yes … you need to look at your weaknesses as well as your strengths. And yes … you need to find jobs where you match their needs, even if not perfectly on paper. (You can help fill in those blanks for them.)
But most importantly, please remember that no matter what someone has on paper, you bring something to the job no one else can … your determination, resourcefulness, positive attitude and unique ways of finding solutions. And that goes a lot further than any “perfect” set of skills when it comes to finding an employee that we want to hire.
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