By: Lisa M. Schuetz
Nov 6, 2014
Lisa Casino-Schuetz (LinkedIn Profile) is Moving Ahead Program Coordinator at Bergen YWCA which helps connect women who are long term unemployed from the community with local employers. Recruiter for Bergen YWCA. She is an instructor at Felician College andPresident of C&C Career Center, a Career Development Consultant
This article is not for the light of heart it is for those who are serious about getting back to work, and back to earning an income that can secure their lifestyle they deserve. This article addresses the today’s job market is so drastically changed from the market of 5-10-15 years ago that one must understand all the dynamics that are in play in the job market of today. The job search methods of the past no longer work. The process is daunting and frustrating, only those who are motivated and focused will have a chance to land the one job in this very competitive job market, you must stand out from the crowd as there are not enough jobs for all those who need them, and this is even more true in the highly densely populated areas across our nation.
In this article I will provide you with solutions, as the job seekers who are successful are those who are positive and can stay positive through this process no matter how long it might take.
The job search is significantly changed and different than it was years ago. The idea of having to search for a job after you just lost your job can be overwhelming. It’s overwhelming and for a variety of reasons. It can be a very stressful time because of the amalgam of feelings that are running through your brain, and the impact is has on all those around you. These feelings are all very understandable but we must get past that somehow and move on and start the job search or the feelings will get worse and stifle activity.
Ready-set-go! Allow yourself a day or two to decompress. Find a good place to meditate and think about what your next steps are. Your mind has to be clear and able to focus before you start the job search process. You might be in a state of shock right now so you must try and relax. Talk to supportive family members and friends to lift you up during this dismal time. The harsh reality is that it is what it is and sitting around feeling sorry for yourself won’t help with getting you back to work in some capacity. Feeling melancholy or even anger are all normal feelings right now. If your feelings are truly debilitating, seek professional help. Things will get better if you can find the wherewithal to pull through what seems like pile of quicksand. You can make this happen. You must make it happen. Being you have a full time job finding a job, it’s easy for family members to ask you to pick up the slack because you are home. Learn to say no to most chores you wouldn’t normally do if you had a full time job. This is valuable time that is to be used finding a job.
Here I the mindset you must have while conducting your job search. Looking for a job is indeed a full time job and it costs money. There are money saving tips that could affect your job search. Persevering and putting in the time will help you land a job quicker. There are steps that you must take to be a competitive winner in the job search arena. A cut throat attitude is one you will encounter but if you use the right tools, you can outsmart your opponent. When I say “cut throat” I mean that there is no room for excuses and it’s every man for himself. Be prepared and have a plan. I will outline some of the obstacles that you can easily use as an excuse for not doing a thorough search. I will also demonstrate the costs that you are about to incur. A little savings for the job search is necessary.
First thing you must do is to get yourself mentally energized. After you awake, clear your head. Jump in the shower and get dress as if you were going to work because you are. A suit isn’t necessary unless this works for your psyche. Psychologically, you will feel better if you are all cleaned up and look professional. It should catapult you in work mode. Try to sit at a desk or a table with your computer and a printer nearby. If you don’t have a computer or a printer, there are no excuses. Listed in the table for are the obstacles and how to overcome them. Don’t allow them to manage you, you will manage them. Go with the flow. You may feel anxiety and feelings of gloom. Know this is normal and when you feel this way, call a family member or friend designated to lift your spirits and expresses positivity. Make sure the person is available during the day while you are conducting your job search. If you can’t find a sounding board, look for online groups that you can use to express your feelings. The more in control of the situation you feel, the more successful the job search will be.
According to John R. Fugazzie from “Smart Job Hunting America: The Institute of Career Education, he states “Everyone must realize that to looking for a job in this job market isn’t the same as it was 10 years ago. Some of the concepts about looking for a job are the same but we must adapt to the fact that there is only one job for every eight to ten people.”
One very powerful tool, LinkedIn, used for networking purposes is very important to get acquainted with. This is the time to do some soul searching about what you want to do next. Some may want to start their own business if time permits. If you aren’t getting interviews, you may want to have a professional business writer do your resume. Business cards or “networking cards” need not be expensive if you look around or you can purchase business card paper and make the cards yourself on the computer. They aren’t the best quality and don’t have fancy graphics but the main information will do. Your name, cell, email, LinkedIn address, and an identifier as to who you or your industry all should at least be present on the card. Don’t isolate yourself Join LinkedIn and the groups on LinkedIn. Make friends on LinkedIn. You will find people who are experiencing what you are on this site. You will also find those who are willing to help you in your job search. Make brief phone calls to family and friends letting them know that you are looking for a job. Surround yourself with positive people.
You need a computer and a printer. No matter what, even if resumes are being sent electronically, there is always use for a paper resume. There may be times that you have to fax your resume.
Each day you must set aside time to look for work. Today this is a full time job requiring more hours than ever before.
Network, network, network! Tell everyone that you are looking for a job and would appreciate any help they could give. Ask them to pass the word around to their friend. This is building your network. Tell all of your friends, family, and people you meet everywhere. Have those business networking cards handy and don’t be shy. Introverts have a hard time with this. They find it to be a drudgery and find it quite daunting. Practice, practice, practice! Networking is a skill. You must find ways to overcome your fears. Most people considers themselves introverts. There are plenty of practical exercises that will sharpen your networking skills. Overcoming fear is the biggest obstacle especially among introverts. This comes with a lot of practice. Practice networking with a family member or friend first.
Develop you elevator pitch and ask if it would be ok if you could practice it on them. Write it down and read it right off the paper if need be and ask for feedback or constructive criticism. Practice in front of a mirror until you get good at it. Repeat this until you feel comfortable enough to venture out into the public. Just because you are unemployed don’t volunteer or agree to more chores at home. You are supposed to be at work looking for a job. Take a break every so often and take a lunch break and then get right back to it.
Below are a list of items that you need for a successful job search. You may not have the funds for the selected items but there are potential solution for these obstacles. In other words, there should be no excuses about the job search. There is always another way to tackle them. I know of a gentleman who would check his email on his photo he didn't have cable service at home.