Job Search Strategies

Ready to start your job search? Reflect on your career and document your most significant accomplishments, successes, and experiences. Successful job seekers are ready to clearly articulate why they are the best candidate for the job, and the unique attributes they could bring to a company. First, practice your elevator speech and personal mission statement. How to write it: if you had 30 seconds in an elevator with the head of the company, how would you convince them to hire you? It is important to be able to quickly highlight your strengths and make them interested in hearing more about you. Once you have your personal mission statement prepared, you can choose your next job carefully. Think about your best and worst jobs and start taking on the habits of a competent, driven job seeker.Here’s how:

Ask yourself what you want in your next opportunity. Conduct your job search with your skills, interests, and values in mind. Research companies to determine what opportunities best match your target position.

Do research. Try to determine who you can talk to at your target company so you can learn of opportunities and become a candidate prior to a job posting.

Take action – be heard. Use your voice. Cold calling prospective employers can be scary, but it can also be an important job search strategy.

Once you have identified a position in which you are interested, ask to speak to the hiring manager who will be making a decision on filling the position. Ask for a few minutes on their calendar to discuss why you are a good candidate.

Network Continuously. Tell everyone (family members, friends, former colleagues, etc.) that you are looking for employment. Ask them to think of you when they hear of any opportunities. Join professional organizations to meet others who might be able to help you.

Try to meet face‐ to‐face with at least three or four people per day. Offer to buy them a cup of coffee. Tell them you are seeking advice and counsel for your job search.

The purpose of your conversation is to build a relationship, rather than to ask for a job. At the end of the conversation, ask them who else would be good for you to talk to and ask if you can use their name as a reference.

Seek outside advice. Consider using an employment agency to help you. Spend time understanding the services they will provide and the costs of such services.

Take advantage of temporary jobs. Be flexible. Consider taking a contract, temporary or consulting position. Oftentimes, these types of opportunities can lead to full‐time employment.

Write specifically about the position. When sending out resumes, make certain your cover letter mirrors the position description and specific job requirements. Catch the recruiter’s/ hiring manager’s attention by highlighting how your skills and experience match their needs.

Your first impulse may be to take a relaxed approach to your job search. But your job search will be more effective if you first take the time to create a plan. Make a weekly or daily schedule of job search activities you want to complete. This plan will help you keep on track during your search. Develop your own schedule by committing to at least some of the activities listed above.

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