Tuesday, September 22, 2009

5 Ways to Jump-Start that Job Search!

Need some fresh ideas to re-ignite a stalled job search? Here are a few that will help.

1) Get in touch with coworkers with whom you worked well in the past, and who respect your work. Perhaps they know of an opening at the company they're working at now, or have heard of openings somewhere else. Don’t call and ask outright for work. That can make people uncomfortable. Just reconnect and update them with your status in an upbeat way. It's also better to start with people you know than to cold call or otherwise approach “strangers.”

2) Don't discount any source of jobs. Lots of people focus on the Internet these days and let it go at that. Sure there are many great resources there, such as SimplyHired http://www.simplyhired.com/, one of our favorite site, which lets you search thousands of different job sites all at once. But lots of other people are using those sources too. Also try to pinpoint sites that are geared to your specific profession (for example, Mediabistro (http://www.mediabistro.com/) has lots of jobs for writers and editors that you won't find elsewhere. Surely your profession has its Mediabistro equivalents.

3) By all means get on and use LinkedIn (http://www.linkedin.com/). We can't write an article about job hunting without including perhaps the best tool for job hunters to come along since the computer itself. Register, create a complete and compelling profile, start answering others’ questions, and become a regular presence on the site. It keeps your name in front of the people who can help you. In the case of LinkedIn, that’s 48 million of the most-connected professionals you will find on the Internet.

4) Get out of the office. There's so much you can do from home these days that some job hunters rarely leave. That's a mistake for your task at hand, but also your mental and physical well being. Push yourself away from your desk and take some "field trips." Check out local book stores, for example, and see what the latest job-hunting books have to offer. Just grab a bunch, pull up a chair and start taking some notes. How to Find a Job on LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, MySpace, and Other Social Networks is one book you may find useful.

5) Take some time to review your past accomplishments. It's disheartening to look for work when it sometimes seems that seems everyone else has a job, so you need to keep that self esteem high. Won awards in the past? Have you amassed letters of recommendations? Review these things them for an ego boost.

I know job-hunting is hard, and certainly there will be days when you feel discouraged. But take heart…there’s blue sky ahead. I once read that a job hunt results in a long series of NOs followed by a YES. You need to get those NOs before you can get that one blessed YES. So keep at it in ways that work for you.