Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Five Tips to Stay Motivated During the Job Search

Finding the right job in today’s economy can be a daunting task. The search can be a lengthy and discouraging process. Before you throw in the towel or land the wrong job, why not “re-motivate” yourself? Staying motivated can be the largest predictor of your searching success. As a new member of the Stafflink team, I have recently experienced the obstacles associated with “job searching”. I have also been fortunate to reap the benefits from putting in a little extra work.

Tip #1: Make a schedule. Everyday outline what you want to accomplish in your job search and how you to plan to accomplish it. Break your search into specific tasks that you can focus your energy on. You are more likely to produce high quality work if you do not rush the process. Remember, the best positions are rarely found in 15 minutes so treat the search as a full-time job.

Tip #2: Separate “the glitter from the gold”. Apply for the positions you are interested in, instead of auto-sending resumes to the masses. In order to ensure long-term success, you have to be able to envision yourself enjoying the position. Record each individual you contact, for what position and the details associated with each exchange. When an employer contacts you for an opportunity, it doesn’t fair well if you don’t remember applying for the position. By referring to the details of the job description or your last interaction with the contact you can easily start to build a positive rapport.

Tip #3: Practice, Practice, Practice. Practice your interviewing skills. The most successful candidates will know how to effectively market themselves. Find a job which interests you and write statements about how your strengths will benefit that position. If you are unsure of your strengths, ask former employers, professors or colleagues.

Tip #4: Find your “wow” factor. Every piece of work you submit to an employer showcases your abilities. Exceed the company’s expectations and you will make a lasting impression. Everyone sends in a resume and a cover letter so why not show the company you are interested by taking the time to go above and beyond? If you think the contact is busy, take the time to consolidate your profile or record your resume as a podcast. Give the employer something unique to remember you by (a sample piece of work, a link to a blog, a candidate portfolio, etc.)

Tip #5: Count your successes. Job searching can be draining. When you receive positive feedback, reward yourself. Each step in the process should be seen as a business goal. If you receive a call back, expand your network or land an interview, why not celebrate? Remember every opportunity presents a chance for learning and practice.

The impression you make on an employer will be lasting so be creative in your job search from beginning to end. Find a way to stand out from the crowd. If you can demonstrate to potential employers your strengths from the beginning, opportunities will arise.

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