Turning Your JobSearch Fears into Success
Aliza Golshani, M.A, Ed, Your Path Careers
It is time. The new year has begun. The sleepy holiday season is over. Companies and organizations have ramped up their recruiting volume. You are ready. You need a new job.
You may be in this situation for a multitude of reasons. Perhaps you have been in your current role for so long that you can practically do it with your eyes closed and you need a fresh challenge. Your situation could have been precipitated by an organizational restructure, you officially retired from your company and are embarking on your second career phase or your personal circumstances necessitated a rapid change - you relocated, experienced major family commitments or you simply decided ‘It is time.' It is time for a new job. Now.
Searching for a new job, is no easy feat. Gaining a new role can be enticing, yet also frightening. This fear of the unknown can be paralyzing. When you dissect your fears, it can fall under any many categories. You may fear failure, loss of income or loss of your pride. These fears are all valid. However, these situations will not be permanent. Taking decisive action will enable you to shape your future. As Pablo Picasso wisely said, "Action is the foundational key to all success."
Taking action is the key to a successful job search. Start with one action that is easiest for you. Choose an action you can take immediately. After you have read this article may be an ideal time. If not now, then commit to a time. Schedule, it into your calendar today.
Here are some ideas for your first step.
1. Send an email or call a contact and schedule a meeting: The purpose of this meeting maybe to tell them you are actively seeking a new position. You may call a former colleague, business partner, client, college professor or friend. Telling people that you are looking for work can be fear provoking. However, as Marty Nemko affirms, friends and colleagues can often be the best leads to greener employment pastures. If they are already aware you are searching for a new job, you can position yourself more centrally on their radar. Meeting, preferably in person, will provide an opportunity for them to understand your goals and assist you, such as by making personal introductions or informing you about potential organizations are hiring or could benefit from your skills.
2. Make a list of your contacts: If you are planning a telephone call, and are unsure of whom to call, you are not alone. Overcome this block by listing everyone and anyone who may assist you in your job search - such as old colleagues, clients, college or grad school friends and industry professionals. Then prioritize the top three people. Reach out to them for advice immediately (see above). People generally like to help. You are helping your career by taking this step.
3. Review your resume: This assumes you have a resume. If you don't have a functional resume. Now is the time to craft one. If this task feels to large, break it down into smaller steps. List your most recent professional accomplishments and consider how these align to your current job search. Consider all your skills - both personal and technical. Capture them all in list form so they can be revised for your resume. To boost your knowledge about current resume formats, attend a resume writing workshop or engage a professional resume writer to review your document and help you produce a resume selling your professional brand in a captivating manner.
4. Update your LinkedIn presence: Technology allows us to communicate more broadly and cleverly than ever before. LinkedIn is your professional image to the world. You can share your professional story about who you are, what you have done and how you can help prospective employers. Your professional contacts and people beyond your immediate connections, such as Recruiters, can use your LinkedIn profile to determine your professional value for them and companies they represent.
If you do not have a LinkedIn account, set one up immediately. A professional LinkedIn writer, tutorial or workshop can assist you in creating or adding compelling detail to your profile. When you have a strong LinkedIn Profile, you will feel more confident using LinkedIn as a tool to propel your job search. Make your profile stand out from the crowd.
5. Consider Networking opportunities. Networking is accessible to everyone, irrespective of where you live. How you choose to network, will depend on your industry, who you know already, your budget and your personal career goals.
Use your existing contacts and LinkedIn to initiate personal meetings. If you are seeking to expand your network and learn more about particular companies or industries, you can leverage LinkedIn to connect with people beyond your network and set up informational interviews.
Specific industries have active Professional Associations and affiliate with conferences, seminars and workshops, catering to a range of budgets. Chambers of Commerce and Meet Ups often host inexpensive or free events that are publicly accessible.
Deciding on and taking your first step builds confidence and will set you on a path of momentum. This first step will become part of your overall job search strategy by helping you clarify, prioritize and schedule your next steps. Whichever step you choose, these items can help you generate a priority list of several steps so that you maintain your job search momentum. You can always diversify and increase your job search strategy miles as you gain ground.
Aliza Golshani is the Founder of Your Path Careers.
After transitioning from the legal and educational sectors, Aliza found her career purpose - helping others successfully navigate their career and professional transitions.
Aliza Golshani is frequent guest blogger for Phase2Careers