By Kevin Donlin
Here's a collection of job search tips that have helped my clients over the years.
I couldn't think of any clever theme to tie them together, but you know what? So what! The theme here is that these tips work! And they can help you find work, faster.
So here they are. Read them and reap …
1) Create your own momentumThe Big Mo -- you hear about it all the time in sports. Teams with momentum get on a roll, score more often and win more games than teams without it.
If your job search is stuck, you can create your own momentum and move toward the position you want by starting each day with a victory of some sort, no matter how small.
Example: Make your first networking call in the morning to your best friend or favorite family member. Why? There's zero chance of rejection and you'll likely hang up the phone smiling (if not, call somebody who makes you smile).
HOLLYWOOD, FL - OCTOBER 05: Lamar Smith (L) speaks with Salvation Army job recruiter, Esther Rush, as he interviews for an opening as a bell ringer in the upcoming Red Kettle Campaign at the Workforce One South Employment Solutions center on October 5, 2012 in Hollywood, Florida. The Labor Department announced today that the United States economy had gained 114,000 jobs in September and the jobless rate fell from 8.1% to 7.8%, which is the first time it's been below 8% since 2009. (Image credit: Getty Images via @daylife)
Or, you can call a former co-worker you haven't seen in months to schedule a networking lunch. Or invite your favorite neighbors over for a barbecue where you can ask for advice on your job hunt.
In other words, make your first action a slam dunk -- something you know will turn out well. A successfully completed task every morning will help you tackle more-challenging work later. Because you will have momentum on your side.
2) Ask for help, listen -- and act!Question: How many people have you asked this month for advice about your job search? If you're absolutely honest in your answer, the number will be small. Too small.
SAN MATEO, CA - JUNE 07: A job seeker looks over employment pamphlets during the Job Hunter's Boot Camp at College of San Mateo on June 7, 2011 in San Mateo, California. As the national unemployment rate sits at 9.1 percent, U.S. Rep. Jackie Speier (D-CA) hosted a Job Hunter's Boot Camp that attracted hundreds of job seekers. (Image credit: Getty Images via @daylife)
Why put all the pressure on yourself to find all the employment answers? Why not ask and discover what's worked for other people, and then model your actions on theirs?
Here's how to do it. Ask the following question of friends and family: "How did you find your last three jobs?"
Notice, you're NOT asking, "Do you know anyone who's hiring?" or some equally unimaginative, conversation-killing question. Instead of begging for a job, you are flattering others by asking for advice. Just be sure to shut up, listen, and write down every word they say in reply.
I guarantee this "magic question" will give you a plethora of ideas every time you ask it, and open your eyes to new ways of getting hired. Plus, you'll be raising your profile among the people who know you, which will put you "top of mind" with them when employment leads do pop up.
Stop trying to figure it all out on your own. Instead, start multiplying your brainpower by asking others for advice.
3) Know that change is your friendAccording to the US Bureau of Labor, voluntary employee turnover across America was 20.20% in 2004, the most recent year available. This means that about one in five employees quit their jobs every 12 months, on average.
What does that mean for you?
HOLLYWOOD, FL - OCTOBER 05: Gloria Richter fills out a job application for the bell ringing openings that the Salvation Army needs to fill in the upcoming Red Kettle Campaign at the Workforce One South Employment Solutions center on October 5, 2012 in Hollywood, Florida. The Labor Department announced today that the United States economy had gained 114,000 jobs in September and the jobless rate fell from 8.1% to 7.8%, which is the first time it's been below 8% since 2009. (Image credit: Getty Images via @daylife)
Today's "no" in your job search could be tomorrow's "yes." Because, in a company with 100 employees, approximately 20 of them will quit within the next year. That's 20 chances for you to get hired.
But you won't be hired if they don't remember you.
So, every time you hear, "Sorry, we're not hiring," or "We don't have any openings right now," don't despair. Keep in regular touch with the companies you want to work for, because one in five of their employees will probably leave this year. It's only a matter of time until something opens up for you.
Now, go out and make your own luck!