Photo credit: Ianqui
Michael Melcher offers some good advice in the NY Times Shifting Careers blog about staying positive in your job search after a layoff. Being affected by a staff reduction isn't fun for anyone involved and for those who haven't engaged in a job search or interview process for an extended amount of time, they may even feel completely lost.
The typical person's job search starts with a resume re-write and then a scouring of online job boards to see what's out there. Resumes are sent into "the black hole" and with some luck, an automated response like this may be returned:
"Your resume has been forwarded to the appropriate department for evaluation. Should your qualifications meet our current requirements, we will contact you within the next several weeks for additional information or to schedule a personal interview. If there are no suitable openings at this time, we will retain your resume in our active files for future consideration."
But you never hear back even though your qualifications match perfectly.
As difficult as it may be to keep your chin up, it's a key to a successful job search. Melcher states, "People find new opportunities in recessions, but not people who spend a lot of time being depressed, whiny or angry."
Melcher's suggestions for dealing with non-responsiveness:
- Act like a human being. The best antidote to feeling disconnected is to connect with people. Manifest as a person, not as an e-mail address.
- Lessen your dependence on the Internet. If you are focusing solely on online applications, your job search hasn′t begun yet.
- Assume that other people are busier than you are. A non-response isn′t a "no." It′s just a non-response.
- Improve your own communications.
- Make connections for other people.
- Try Fedex.
You can read the rest of his post here.
In my opinion, the most important of these five suggestions is lessening your dependence on the internet job posts. Many companies do not post their open positions online, especially small or mid-size companies who may not have the budgets to subscribe to expensive job boards. Many recruiters (myself included) won't waste time posting open positions on job boards and chasing the same candidate pool as the job posters.
If you are relying solely on job boards for your job search, you are missing out on the majority percentage of available jobs out there. I'm not saying ignore them completely, but do realize the importance making real connections. Go to networking events (professional or personal), volunteer, be active in your social networks, reconnect with old colleagues and friends (this is something you should always be doing, even if you are happily employed!), meet your Facebook or Twitter friends for coffee, and find and build a relationship with a recruiting firm in your industry niche to keep an eye out for you.
How did you go about finding your last job?
Article courtesy of Recruiting Blogswap
Author: Kevin Donlin
We humans have been farming for about 12,000 years, which accounts for only 0.5% of our time on earth as a species, according to an article on the University of Reading web site.
That means, for most of our ancestors -- 99.5% of them -- hunting and gathering was how they got food.
Now. Wouldn't you agree that farming is a more reliable way to feed your family than hunting, especially if the latter involves trying to bag a mastodon?
All of which has something very important to do with your career.
It's this: Almost everyone looking for work thinks of themselves as a job hunter. (You, too?)
Most people hunt for employers and gather job leads, day in and day out.
That's all they know. That's how they've always done it. Maybe for 99.5% of their working history.
But wouldn't it be an evolutionary leap forward to become a job farmer instead? Especially when looking at your career from a long-term perspective?
With that in mind, here are four questions to help you think like a job farmer and cultivate new employment opportunities as reliably as new crops of corn or oats ...
1) Could you start or participate in a blog that gets noticed by employers?
According to an article by LaTina Emerson on RedOrbit.com, one way that today's recruiters are filling positions is by searching industry-specific blogs for intelligent, informed candidates.
Why not be among the lucky few who get found -- and hired?
If you write a high-quality blog, or post thoughtful comments on somebody else's, you greatly increase your chances of getting called by recruiters with job opportunities.
2) Could you join a professional association, like Toastmasters or the Chamber of Commerce, that lets you showcase your expertise among movers and shakers?
Beyond simply joining a local work-related organization, you should stand out and get noticed.
How? Offer to help with a committee, give a lunch-and-learn presentation on your area of expertise, or take on some other leadership role.
Why? Because almost every professional organization in every city is in need of new leaders. And employers almost always prefer to hire leaders over followers.
To find lists of associations near you, Google the phrase: "professional associations YOUR CITY" or "professional organizations YOUR CITY."
3) Could you get found by employers and recruiters on social networking sites?
Whether you're a member of LinkedIn , Facebook, MySpace -- or all three -- you can make it easier for hiring managers to find you by including the right words in your online profile.
Here's why: You may think of yourself as an Account Executive and define yourself that way in your LinkedIn profile, for example, but a recruiter searching for a Sales Rep might never find you, even though you're a perfect match for the job.
Solution? Embed all relevant job titles and skills in your profile.
If you can't find a way to do it naturally, simply include a sentence like this: "Similar job titles to what I've done include Sale Rep, Sales Representative, Account Executive, and Marketing Coordinator."
As long as you're accurate in your descriptions and don't go overboard, this tactic can get you found by recruiters searching LinkedIn or other social networking sites.
4) Could you join a community service organization and meet local leaders in a setting that lets your altruistic side shine through?
This is different from joining professional associations, in that community service organizations are not likely to be connected with business. But that doesn't mean you can't turn your volunteer efforts into networking contacts that lead to a new job.
Many of the most influential people in any community volunteer for soup kitchens, church boards of directors, youth mentoring programs, and the like. Why not join one and work alongside the kind of people you need to
meet for long-term career success?
To find lists of possible groups to join, Google the phrase: "volunteer opportunities YOUR CITY" or "community organizations YOUR CITY."
Now, go out, get found and get hired!
Article courtesy of the Recruiting Blogswap, a content exchange service sponsored by CollegeRecruiter.com, a leading site for college students looking for internships and recent graduates searching for entry level jobs and other career opportunities.