"I'm all done chubbing up for Crimbo, chilling out and chucking up! I'm onto thinking about 2017 now, so what's the best way to kick off a new job hunt?"
Cheryl didn't look chubbed up to me, but I know that after the extended R&R time has begun to pale a little, there does come that itch to get back into the groove and start looking forward again. You do in fact have some very useful advantages at this time of year, so here we go with seven top-class steps which will help you launch 2017 and make it a kick-ass year for your career.
- Be social
- Add skills
- Be persistent
Use some of the time you've got left before you have to return to the grindstone (or use a weekend) to get yourself mentally straight. Relax, pour a drink, pick up a pen and paper and do some reappraisal. What's your target or dream job for this year? With what type of employer? What makes you eligible for the role? What makes you more eligible for the role than the other candidates? Try and understand what three factors might improve your chances of successful selection.
Where are you going to find that dream job? Write out a job-search plan for each of the paths you're going to head down. Where might such jobs be advertised? How could you contact employers directly? What types of people inside the organisation could you speak to? Who might be able to get you an introduction? What social media routes can you explore? Draw up a detailed plan for what you might say to potential employers to help you get a foot through the door.
Research your field, the industry, appropriate roles and notable people employed for news, new thoughts and potential opportunities. Try to understand what challenges your sector might be facing. Identify potential employers, then look at press releases and news items to uncover what they're trying to achieve. Understand where your dream role fits and what you could do in that role that might make a valuable contribution, or even a real difference, to their prospects.
People relax at work around Xmas & New Year - use that to your advantage: create your own opportunities for 2016. Identify potential employers, research them and approach appropriate people. Use social media, make approaches and build up your contacts. In fact, build up a range of contacts inside an organisation, if you can. Be warm, be open that you're looking for a job, ask what might be coming up and ask who're the best people to talk to. Contact them, be ready with the right words and with your tailored CV.
5) Be social!
Use the seasonal excuse - chat to old contacts also, make it clear you're on the hunt. For a job, obviously :). Update your online and social media presence. Re-do your website and start or update your blog.
6) Add skills!
If you have spare time, do some volunteering. Take on work that stretches you. Further develop those much sought-after soft-skills employers want to see. Look at a short training course to improve your work-related skills also. Alternatively, set yourself a short project that will teach you something relevant - plan it, do it. Aim to show how determined and proactive you're being.
7) Be persistent!
Follow up contacts after Xmas. You don't create opportunities in one step or on day 1, you create them through a series of ongoing, positive and focussed actions. Be upbeat and outwardly positive at all times - If you take a beating one day, learn from it and remember: Tomorrow is another day! Rise refreshed to a new dawn and start again. Remind yourself what the benefits of winning that job will be, get back in the groove and then go for it!
Think about where you'd like to be, this time next year, and do your very best to make it happen - you've got a year!
Good luck everyone - Happy 2017!
Jon Gregory, Editor
For more detail on this subject, read “Winning That Job: A kill or be-killed guide to job-search and interview preparation.” You can pick up it up as an e-book or paperback here on Amazon >>>
Keywords: job search, job hunt, social media, applications, new year resolutions, targeting, searching.