Job Search Strategies & CareerBeam

Job searching is all in the approach
Are you in the process of looking for a new position? Are you finding it taking longer than you had hoped? While the slower economy may be one culprit, your approach to the job search process could also be a factor. Here are some common mistakes that people make while job searching: 

Spending too much time applying for job postings. Let’s face it, for most of us, it feels better to apply to job postings. We feel more productive and comfortable because we are pursuing an actual position that is asking us to apply. But sometimes this position may not actually be open (there is someone who already is on the inside track and posting is an HR formality), you may be competing with 100s of other resumes, or it may not be a good fit for you (but it is ostensibly available). For these reasons and more, the majority of your job searching time and energy should be focused on networking. True networking is about give and take, so consider proposing a presentation for your professional organization or volunteering for a cause that you feel passionate about, in addition to researching people and organizations to reach out to. You can find more resources in the Networking section of CareerBeam, a free resource available through the Auburn University Career Center. 

Haphazardly job searching. While networking is the job search strategy where most people experience success, the results of your networking efforts can be difficult to see; a direct cause and effect relationship is not completely in your control. When you feel like what happens in your life is not in your control, stress builds and you may find the job search very frustrating. You can diminish that stress by tracking your progress through the use of goals. You can learn more and find resources to help at the Implementation section of CareerBeam.

Too lengthy and/or unfocused in your communication. Fearing that you may be omitting something important about yourself when networking, you may be overwhelming your listener with too much information. Most listeners will remember no more than 3 characteristics about a person in a first meeting. So determine upfront your 3 most important traits and develop statements that effectively illustrate those qualities. Write these down and practice them verbally.  You can learn more and find resources to help at the Implementation section of CareerBeam.

Not asking for help or support. Whether you feel shy or just don’t want to burden someone, you may be missing out on significant progress in your job search because you are not reaching out to others for help. Most people want to help and most feel they can when you request help on which they can deliver. Both of you will feel more comfortable and therefore successful if you ask for help with anything other than a job. A job is a tall order. People can deliver on information about organizations that are growing or referrals to people in positions similar to your job target or feedback on your resume. Some help will be more “helpful” than others, but this is where progress usually happens – so don’t be afraid to ask!

Article available thanks to CareerBeam.

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