If there were but five things you could share with today’s job seeker, what five things would they be?
Looking for a job in 2013? Think you might lose your job next month? Downsized last Friday? Here are five ideas to help expedite your job search success. Do these things within the next few weeks, and you will be doing yourself a humongous favor. Even though you may think some of these ideas sound a bit harsh, oh how I wish someone would have told me these things straight up when I lost my job years ago:
- Pull yourself together as fast as you can. While you may be shocked, hurt, embarrassed, disappointed, angry, bitter, resentful, frustrated -- whatever emotion it might be – muster every ounce of positivity within your being and focus on these three things: facts, examples and evidence. When interacting with your network, recruiters or employers, set aside your emotional turbulence and state relevant facts, specific examples and compelling evidence which prove your ability to perform your target goal. Do your very best to get your stuff together and know precisely how you can add value to the sustained success of a prospective employer; to do otherwise is to do a great disservice to yourself.
- Do not interview until you can speak without crying. And that takes practice and positive self-talk. I cried buckets when I lost my job. I cried and cried -- literally, I think I cried until I had no more tear drops to cry regarding that subject. Done and done. An employer will not be impressed by your job loss tears – in most instances. There is a time and a place for shedding of same and it is not in the ‘hot seat’ when you are competing for a job. Consider your competition and Candidates B, C, D, E, F and G who want that job as much (if not more) than you do. Go for it. Shine. Give it your best. Expect the best.
- Perform a self-analysis (some experts call this “assessment” or “inventory”) of product you and your brand. Do not go to market until you have analyzed your knowledge, skills and abilities and can speak about same with clarity, conviction, conciseness and confidence. To do otherwise is to waste much precious time – yours and others. Get to know yourself inside and out. When someone asks a simple FAQ such as “Tell Me About Yourself,” do not be shocked – be prepared and welcome the chance to do so. Whether the question is coming from your Aunt Gertrude or a major employer, your preparedness (or lack thereof) will be discerned in nanoseconds. Make every chance to converse about yourself be done so with excellence.
- If you are stuck, get help. If you don’t know where to turn, get help. If you are frustrated and overwhelmed, get help. If you say job search is too complicated, get help. If you say you are discouraged, get help. If you say you can’t motivate yourself, get help. If you say, I don’t know what to do, get help. The time, energy and money you will save – in the long run – is worth every single penny you will invest. Help (for free or a fee) is yours for the asking – it all starts with you.
- Be a good detective. Be a savvy sleuth. Be an imaginative investigator. Be a persistent private eye. Be curious and creative in your quest for information and ideas that might lead to your desired goal. Do not be deterred by roadblocks, obstacles, dead-ends, exits, closures, no’s, detours, etc. Keep on rolling to solve your case which is that of finding new employment. Do not stop until you get to a green light and someone, somewhere who believes in you enough to offer you an opportunity that works for you.
“Map out your future, but do it in pencil.” – Jon Bon Jovi, quoted in Reader’s Digest “Quotable Quotes,” September 2002