5 Tips to Infuse Momentum into Your Job Search
Maintain a positive attitude. Whether you are unemployed, underemployed, or just hate your job, it’s a challenge to keep negativity out of your job search. Combat these feelings with gratitude; identify what is going right in your life and make a list of the things you are grateful for. Maintain a positive attitude and focus each day on your future success. Also, keep handy a list of meaningful affirmations to get you back into a positive mindset when you encounter a hurdle. Enthusiasm and positivity are essential!
Have a plan – in writing! Spend a few hours creating a roadmap for your success. First, determine how many hours per week you will devote to your search. Next come up with a list of activities, i.e., attend networking events, add LinkedIn contacts, research potential companies and identify contacts within, schedule informational interviews, apply for jobs online, etc. Determine how much of your time you will devote to each activity and be sure to track your weekly progress. An accountability partner or coach can be very useful to keep you on course.
Review your resume and cover letter. These career documents are marketing pieces and must be designed and written to “sell” you as the ideal candidate for the position you seek. Remember – you only get one chance to make a good first impression. If you submit a resume that doesn’t grab a reader’s attention, you won’t have the opportunity to send in a “do-over” version. If you’d like a second opinion, forward them to me and I’ll provide a complimentary assessment.
Update your LinkedIn profile. With the majority of hiring managers and recruiters now using LinkedIn to source candidates, it’s critical that you have a strong presence. Key elements to pay attention to include:
- Photo: Professional, recognizable, and recent head shot is recommended.
- Headline: This is the most important part of the profile – load it with keywords and convey your brand.
- Summary: Use all 2,000 characters to tell your story. This opening should be conversational and convey who you are and what you can do for a potential employer.
- Accomplishments: Limit your Employment descriptors to include primarily your significant accomplishments. Job duties can be learned later from your resume; use the LI profile to create interest and grab attention.
- Recommendations: Make an effort to gather well-written recommendations. When asking your co-workers, supervisors, clients, or peers to write a recommendation, suggest a specific trait to write about. For example, you might ask one person to speak to your leadership skills, another to your problem solving abilities, and another to highlight your work ethic. This request will make it easier for them to write and will paint a complete picture of who you are.
Schedule time to take care of yourself. Keeping your body and mind in top shape is important to the outcome of your search. Take time to exercise and cook healthy meals. Allot time to relax and enjoy your favorite TV show or read a book. Taking time each day away from your search will ensure you are fresh and motivated to get started the following day. I also recommend to my clients that they designate one day a week as a “day of rest” – step away from all job search activities and either tend to personal tasks or do something fun.
Kathy Keshemberg is a Nationally Certified Resume Writer and Certified Career Management Coach. Since 1983, she has created thousands of interview-winning resumes and related job-search materials for satisfied clients around the world. Need assistance with your career? We’re here to help! www.acareeradvantage.com