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Many people wait until the new year to search for a new job. Now that 2023 is here, you don’t have any excuses and need to get started on the job hunt.
Searching for a new job takes time and energy. Think deeply about what you want to do next. You will need to do homework to see how hot or cold the job market is for your specific type of career. Update your rèsumè and LinkedIn profile, start speaking with people in your network to gather job leads, find headhunters that specialize in your space, create an elevator pitch and put together a daily action plan to achieve your goal.
Talk with colleagues, family, friends and former co-workers to gain valuable insights. Read about the type of job you’re going after and how easy or hard it will be to find a new opportunity. Set aside a sufficient amount of time every day for your job search.
Update Your LinkedIn Profile
LinkedIn will be your primary platform to network and get noticed if you are a white-collar professional. Create or update your LinkedIn profile and résumé, which could be added to your account. Your LinkedIn profile should reflect your most current job and go back about 10 years. The recent job should take up the most real estate, as that is what recruiters and hiring managers are interested in. They’ll also look at your career trajectory to see if you’ve grown professionally or remained static. Make sure to add your college and advanced degrees, accreditation, certifications and licenses required for your field.
You can have one generalist résumé, but then specifically tailor your résumé for each job you apply for to ensure that it addresses the specific needs outlined in the job description. In addition to internal recruiters looking at your résumé, it will also be included in the company’s applicant tracking system.
To help your résumé stand out in the applicant tracking system, make sure that you use common terms, nomenclature, abbreviations and jargon that people use in your sector of expertise, as well as using words, phrases and work responsibilities that match what’s called for in the job advertisement.
Networking On LinkedIn
Actively engage on LinkedIn to get noticed. Set a list of target companies. When you see employees of the organization in the same type of role as you, send out invitations to connect with a polite greeting letting them know you’d love to work at the firm. If an online conversation ensues, be bold and ask if they could point you to the right person who is involved with the hiring process for the role you want.
If someone within your profession posts content on the social media platform, reply with a like and add a well-thought-out comment. Once you get confident, start writing your own posts or share videos you’ve made about a relevant topic about your profession that will resonate with others in your field.
When you apply for a job, search for people you may know who work there. If you’re unfamiliar with anyone at the firm, tap into your network, both online and in person, to see if anyone you know has a connection with a decision-maker at the company. If they are nice enough to go to bat for you, politely ask them to put in a good word for you and offer a glowing recommendation. The recommendation will make you stand out. If you can obtain a couple of people supporting your candidacy, especially an insider, they’ll think you are a superstar.
Partner With Recruiters
Look for recruiters who specialize in your space. Having a couple of smart, experienced, knowledgeable and well-connected recruiters working on your behalf can make all the difference in the world. Top recruiters have deep relationships with companies and hiring managers. They’ll often know about open job requisitions before anyone else. Many times, companies don’t aggressively advertise certain jobs and rely on recruiters to conduct stealth, under-the-radar searches for the appropriate candidates.
Recruiters offer insider information about hiring managers and corporate culture. You’ll gain tips on what the hiring managers really want in a prospective employee, what you should avoid saying and what are the hot buttons to push to ingratiate yourself with your future boss. Recruiters will smooth out any bumps in the road, advocate for you and help with the awkward negotiating process.
Put Together And Practice Your Elevator Pitch
Put together an elevator pitch. The elevator pitch is like a commercial on television. Like a luxury-automobile company needs to quickly and effectively communicate its message and sell you on its product in one minute or less, you need to do the same thing in your pitch.
An elevator pitch is a term used to describe yourself, your job and current responsibilities, highlighting a huge win and why you are the best fit for the job, within about 30 or 45 seconds. Visualize yourself on an elevator ride with an executive at a company you’d like to work for. You need to seize the opportunity and quickly sell yourself before they exit the elevator to their floor.
Role-Play Answering Interview Questions
Review commonly asked interview questions and prepare answers to them. Research and learn all about the companies you plan on meeting with, so you’ll be comfortable when the interviewer asks, “Why do you want to work here?”
When answering questions, don’t go off on tangents. Answer by selling your relevant, on-target experience, background, interpersonal skills, educational background and other softer skills that you offer, which directly addresses the job requirements and shows how you can make their lives easier.
When responding to questions, come across in an enthusiastic, concise and compelling manner. You also want to demonstrate that you are a caring, hardworking and empathetic person they would love to hire and work alongside. Additionally, you are comfortable in your own skin and can handle stress. Lastly, think of questions to ask the interviewer when they say, “Do you have any questions for me?”
Hunting for a new job is your new job. To get you started, here is a daily checklist of activities you should follow:
- Search job boards, the career pages of target companies and job aggregators, like Indeed, Simply Hired and Glassdoor. Try to send out a certain number of rèsumès every day. Tailor your rèsumè to each job listing.
- Keep track of the résumés you’ve sent out, calls made and emails sent thanking people for taking the time to interview you.
- Contact a recruiter and ask for in-person or video interviews to build a relationship. Set up calls with people in your network.
- Make yourself known on LinkedIn by posting content and commenting on others’ postings. Prepare and practice your elevator pitch. Find someone to role-play interview questions with.
- Research companies that would be a natural progression for you to go next in your career. Investigate them to determine if they are doing well or not. Check out the company’s career page for its job listings. Ask around your network to see if anyone has a connection with the company and whether or not they can make an introduction for you.
- Scour LinkedIn to find the decision-makers, possible hiring managers and human resources or talent acquisition professionals.
- Clean up your social media footprints. Since hiring managers, recruiters and internal talent acquisition personnel may snoop around your social media postings, ensure that you’ve cleaned up anything embarrassing, cringey or hurtful to others.
- Network by sending out emails to people you’ve worked with in the past, old college friends, business associates and all others who could potentially turn you on to a job lead or supply a referral or recommendation to a key insider at the company you’d like to join.