The ABCs of an Effective Job Search

Going through a career transition is exciting and scary. It is a time to find a new opportunity, to develop new skills, and maybe even completely reinvent yourself. It is also nerve-wracking, as your job is generally a significant part of your self identity and how you pay your bills. Here are some tips that I have learned from the many transitions that I have personally experienced.

A – Attitude & Approach
If you are in a career transition, you are dealing with many intense feelings – concern over your future, shock if you unexpectedly lost your job, and excitement towards the idea of landing a job that could be a better fit. Trying to go into a job search with the best possible attitude will serve you well, since it often takes 4-6 months to find your next adventure.

It is important to have the right approach to your job search. Often, people will complain to me that they sent out hundreds of resumes without any responses. With the many job boards out there that make it easy to find positions and to apply to them, you could spend 24 hours a day glued to your computer applying to every position that seems even remotely appealing. Fight that temptation! Instead, I encourage people to take a 10-10-80 approach in spending their time. Spend 10% applying to jobs online, 10% attending networking events and career fairs, and a whopping 80% pursuing specific types of opportunities at a manageable group of companies.

B – Be Focused
This is critical! Figure out your target geographic area, types of positions, industries, salary, and use these data points to come up with a list of 30-50 companies that would hire you to do what you want to do.

C – Connect
Connect with people that work at those companies. Reach out to people that work there and do informational interviews. Attend events that feature speakers at those companies. Getting to know the company before a job is posted, and for them to get to know you, will put you in the best position to land a job at a company that will be a great long term fit.

Advice from Amy Cell, President and Chief Matchmaker at Amy Cell, LLC. For more employment resources click here.

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