12 Aug Re-Energize Your Job Search and Re-Energize Your Mind
By Sylvia Luneau
Are you on the market or keeping your options open for a new position? Your job search today may seem dramatically different than a job search six months ago, but many of the principles remain the same. There are several things you can do to stand out and approach your search with confidence! Employers often want to see a solution-driven mindset with a learning mentality; someone who is interested in knowledge and is well-rounded. Consider the ideas below to re-energize your job search and re-energize your mind.
1. Work your network!
Get in touch with people you know (from LinkedIn, past jobs, friends of friends, family friends, old classmates) to ask for referrals or just to let them know that you are searching for a job.
Make sure that your LinkedIn profile is updated and that it is clear about what positions you are looking for. It should be inviting, easy to read, and to the point.
LinkedIn has great features to help you organize everyone in your network. Use their system to make a spreadsheet of all of your contacts, and systematically reach out to people you know to let them know that you are looking. Do you have a specific dream company in mind? If one of your contacts is connected to someone within that company, ask for a referral! Most people are happy to help where they can.
2. Consider temporary assignments inside and outside of your specialty.
Especially right now, companies are realizing the value of a temporary workforce and hiring people to contract positions more readily. By doing this, companies can fill a role that may be very specific to the current global situation and not long-lasting. They can also test out how a person will fit into their team to prevent adding stress or frustration to their existing employees.
Staffing firms (like us!) are working hard right now to locate these exciting new opportunities and find the right people to fill them. Take advantage of this! Obviously, a temporary assignment in your area of expertise would be ideal, but that may be challenging to find right now. A temporary assignment outside of your specialty may not be exactly what you want, but it will allow you to increase your business network and find out more about the things that you like (and dislike) in a job.
3. Talk to more than one staffing service in more than one specialty area.
Staffing services all have different clients and opportunities, so get in touch with multiple agencies. To ensure your name stays top of mind, consider a quick email to your contact stating your availability, what you are looking for in a job, your hourly range, and what cities you would be willing to commute to. Expect the specialist to say thank you and that they will keep you in mind. An extended dialogue will not happen on a regular basis, but these small touches make a huge difference.
4. Keep current with information and trainings.
Online learning sites Coursera and edX allow you to audit classes from top universities for free. For additional fees, you can gain access to course certificates, assignments, tests, and even receive a final grade. Not sure you want to take a whole class? Use YouTube or a podcast to inspire yourself and help to continually update your strengths and knowledge. Maybe even consider making a video or podcast yourself about something you know well. Who knows? You could be the muse someone else is in need of…
5. Volunteer in your area of expertise.
Many websites now organize online volunteering. Catchafire.org specializes in virtual volunteering by matching professionals to nonprofits. Take a look at their comprehensive website to see what opportunities they have available. Zooniverse.org supports researchers with projects across multiple specialties. There are many great online volunteering options to look into… Dive in! You can make a commitment of only four hours a week. This will allow you to stay active with your skillset, help make a difference to an organization, and show that you were professionally active even while searching for new job opportunities.
6. Practice Interviewing over and over.
When you do get a foot in the door somewhere, make sure you’re prepared! The more confident you are with your message, the better. Develop a succinct, informative soundbite.
Take advantage of the many resources online to help you focus your preparation. You can find lists of questions to consider and answer on your own time and endless tips and tricks. In addition, check out our advice to ace your next interview! Practice again and again with trusted family and friends to make sure you are confident, clear, and concise in your approach.
Ideally, by the time you are walking into an interview (or dialing into one), your repetitive practice will make you feel confident and entirely in charge of your story. Because that’s what it is: you are communicating your story and how you can add value based on your knowledge and past experiences.
In everything, find ways to demonstrate that you are engaged and passionate about what you do. If you haven’t found what that is yet, it is even more important to seek out volunteer opportunities and temporary positions that give you the power to explore different career paths. Staying active and engaged can boost your confidence and help you to feel energized when seeking your next opportunity. Learn something new and give back. You’ll feel good about it and it will help to shape a powerful message about how engaged you are and how powerful you can be in that next role.
Most of all, good luck! You’ve got this! And if you’re still feeling unsure, get in touch with us. We’ll work with you to help you move forward.