Career Strategies: Taking Some Misery Out of Long-Term Job Hunts

I’ve been interviewing job hunters and the profoundly-discontent-but-can’t-leave-this-minute folks on strategies for maintaining sanity and solvency until  satisfactorily employed.  Here are some techniques to help any job hunter, especially if you believe you’ve done everything.

long job hunt

1.  Meet friends after work for a quick drink or for breakfast at least twice a week.   Isolation is the bane of job hunters because staying at home induces what Holly Golightly called “the mean reds.”  Those are worse than the blues born of believing that your situation will never change.  Hearing one’s friends’ troubles can be an upper.  You are not alone.

2.  Get a part-time job doing anything legal that pays.  When I hear people talk about clerking at Macy’s as menial I know they are not desperate.  That would be a great job two or three days a week for anyone who needed people contact.

3.  Volunteer one day a week for a charity related to the full-time job you’re looking for.  Who’s on the board of a charity who could help you if you and that person became better acquainted?

4.  Attend professional society meetings even if you can’t stay for the (expensive) meal.  Talk to the gatekeepers and explain you’d like to be a member once you’re employed.  If you are on someone’s payroll, join all the associations that cover your industry and skill set.  You will spend less time looking once you can move if you bulk up your contacts now.

5.  Speak or serve on panels for industry meetings.  Is there a place with greater employment prospects?  I don’t think so.  What can you talk about?  How about your take on where the industry is going?  A panel on future trends is ageless.

6.  Contact people you worked with the job before last if you haven’t done so.  They will remember you, favorably we hope, and can be new sources of contacts.

7.   Contact retirees you were close to in your last job.  Don’t assume they’re hanging on hooks in Florida or Arizona.  If they are working now or have changed careers they can help you.

The person with more strategies to make contacts feels less pain than the person who keeps plowing the same row.  Unfortunately, most job hunters don’t see making/keeping contacts as a life long process and not just a part of job hunting.  You’d think that social media would have changed this but large outposts of people who don’t maintain their contacts remain.  It lengthens the job hunt and adds to the pain.

Contact Marilyn for Help With Career Strategies

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