According to recent news, more than 100,000 Americans are out of work longer than a year in six states. On average, 43 percent of the U.S. workers have been unemployed for more than 27 weeks! Several months without income can lead people to experience feelings of frustration, helplessness, anger and loss of control.
As the economy gains momentum, long-term job searchers can re-energize their job search campaign using the following eight techniques:
- Networking 101. You have probably contacted a lot of people in your networking activities, but have you reconnected with them lately updating them on your job search efforts? How many people have you not contacted in the past few months because you have said to yourself, “I have contacted these people in the past and those networking efforts have not led to any jobs?”
Remember the adage “out of sight, out of mind?” People are busy. They are doing more multi-tasking than ever before, and people have multiple priorities, like you! Remind your contacts of your recent job-search activities, and ask them for new networking contacts. It only takes one person to give you a lead that could eventually develop into a new job for you.
- Seek Professional Assistance. Have a professional re-write your resume. Contact a career coach who can give you assistance with your job-search campaign. Read books on the subject like What Color Is Your Parachute by Richard Bolles or Rites of Passage by John Lucht. For people seeking professional positions, write a “Hand Bill” or “Strategy Matrix” to accompany your resume.
- Get Out of the House. Don’t spend all of your time looking for positions using the Internet. Get out of the house and meet people by attending job networking meetings, Chamber of Commerce events and volunteering at local hospitals or nonprofit organizations. Possibly start your own “Friday morning” coffee meetings inviting fellow job seekers.
- Don’t Discount Working in Temporary, Part-Time or Contract Positions. Many job seekers don’t realize that temporary and contract positions can lead to full-time employment. For example, many universities have openings for part-time work that eventually can lead to permanent employment.
- Seek Jobs Using Social Media Sites. A recent published survey indicates that of the jobs posted on social networking sites, 77% are on LinkedIn, 54% are posted on Twitter and 25% are on Facebook. Don’t underestimate the “power” of finding your next position using these sites.
- Effectively Use Cover Letters. Always, always,and always write a cover letter to accompany your resume. Your cover letter should tell the reader you are qualified based on their advertised needs. When you can, email your cover letter and resume in one attachment instead of two separate attachments.
- Practice Your Interviewing Skills. Just like a competitive athlete continuously practices, you should practice your interviewing skills by role playing with a partner, answering questions using a tape recorder and reading literature that explains how to answer the “tough” interviewing questions.
- Do Physical Exercise. We all know the benefits of exercise, but are you exercising? Just daily walks of 30 minutes can give you a feeling of invigoration and helps you maintain a positive attitude.
A job search campaign takes a lot of effort, and in these economic times, the time it takes to obtain a new position is longer than ever before. You have probably heard the expression “looking for a job is just like working on a job.” If you view this expression as “words of wisdom” your hard work in seeking your next position will pay off.