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If you are actively looking for a job and can’t seem to find one, don’t blame the market. Yes, it’s a tough market, but keep in mind that it will get even tougher once the media reports any good news. Once all the employed people hear it’s safe to go back into the job search waters, they will be additional competition and the market will get even tighter. So, the time to find a job is now. If your efforts have so far been failing you, double-check these 3 things:
Are you meeting enough people? Just because you send resumes and answer job postings doesn’t mean you have worked on your search. If these avenues aren’t leading to meetings then you are doing busywork, not productive searching. The true measure of an effective search is if you are meeting with several people every week, not how many resumes you happen to mail.
Are you meeting the right people? Some jobseekers think networking is just meeting with anybody. While market information and leads can occur from unlikely places, ultimately you want to be meeting with people who can hire you or refer you to be hired – i.e., the decision-makers. Meeting with old classmates for coffee is fine but it doesn’t count as a productive search activity unless they are a decision-maker in your target sector.
Are you sending the right message? Okay, you’re meeting with the higher-ups but still not getting a job? Make sure you are positioning yourself appropriately. If you are getting seen by the right people and still haven’t been hired, then your marketing message is falling on deaf ears. Find out why – is it something you say, is it how you act, are you missing something in your pitch that you should be highlighting?
Troubleshooting your job search is hard when you are in the thick of things. But it’s so necessary that this is the first thing I do with clients and then I insist that we dedicate specific time going forward to troubleshoot their job search on a regular basis. You need to know you are doing the right things. If you are not getting the results you want, you need to find out why and change what you are doing.
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