The prospect of a job search can be daunting, particularly if you’re preparing for your first post-graduation job, or if it’s been a while since your last search.
Whether you’re new or returning to the job market, or just ready to level up in your career, it can be hard to take the first step. If you’re feeling overwhelmed, these tips can make the process of finding your new job much more manageable and efficient.
Break it Down
Viewing your job search as one huge, complicated project can be intimidating. Instead, try breaking it down into a series of subprojects to make the larger process more manageable. Examples could include determining your target, researching companies, finding available jobs, networking, resume, and interviewing. Your subprojects might have a series of steps as well.
Approach your job search as a job! Determine what you want to accomplish each week and develop a schedule that ensures you’ll complete your to-do list. The schedule should be one you can meet while still allowing time for your other priorities. Consider starting out with a lighter schedule and adding to it as you make progress.
Use your favorite organization method: calendar, spreadsheet, project management apps, etc., and dedicate regular blocks of time to your subprojects. Using tools that already work for you will help you stay on track and make you more comfortable with the process.
Treat your schedule and job search to-do list as a professional commitment. Make a weekly meeting with yourself to assess your progress. If you prefer an accountability partner, check in regularly with your ACE advisor, a friend or a family member.
Use Your Skills
Put your professional skills to use in your job search! If you are highly analytical, track and compare job requirements and companies of interest. Skilled writers may focus on creating compelling application materials. Those with numerous professional contacts may be highly effective networkers. Whatever your strength, use it to your advantage in your search!
A journey of a thousand steps includes many milestones, so be sure to celebrate your accomplishments along the way! Whether you’ve landed an interview at your #1 choice employer, received kudos for your convincing cover letter, or arranged a meeting with a plum networking contact, these incremental successes boost confidence and help propel you toward your ultimate goal.