Applying Patience to Your Job Search

If only the job search happened instantaneously… Unfortunately, not all jobs are filled quickly, nor do applicants find a job in a short amount of time. Some employers take their time hiring, others are so short staffed that even hiring the help they need is too much work. That’s why it’s critical to apply patience to your job search.

The average person spends about 20 hours per week when actively searching for a new job (according to University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire).  It can become a time consuming task in itself.  And while patience is essential, there are a few things that you can do to be proactive in your job search.

  • Keep your resume updated and individualized for the different types of jobs you are applying for.
  • Let your contacts and network know that you are actively seeking new employment.
  • Ensure your social media profiles are up to date and accurate.
  • Target specific companies, even when they are not advertising a new/open position.
  • Study the companies where you’d like to work.
  • Learn a new skill or trait, take a course, or invest in your education.
  • Use a variety of methods in finding openings (online, career fairs, recruiters).
  • Be prepared for the phone call. Have your interview suit ready to go.
  • Practice interview questions, know your answers before your appointment.
  • Look for back-door opportunities to meet executives and potential employers.

While some job searches and transitions can take as little as a few weeks, most individuals who are unemployed or who are actively searching, spend between 3-6 months in the job market. Be patient with your results.

If you aren’t getting any calls back, be sure that you are only applying to jobs that you are qualified for, or at least meet 90% of the requirements.  When you apply to jobs beyond your qualifications you are likely setting yourself up for disappointment. If you are qualified for the jobs you are applying to, but not getting calls back, check with a resume writer or career coach/mentor to see how your resume can be improved.

What are some other tips you have for being patient in your job search?

Best of luck in your job hunt!

7 Ways to Make Your Resume Stand Out

Resume standards change over the years, and as candidates go in and out of the job pool they often lose touch with what’s relevant in an updated resume. Here are seven tips you can utilize to make your resume stand out.

#1 Drop the objective statement.

Objective statements are now considered outdated pieces of information. A resume should be targeted to one position and therefore eliminates the need for an objective. Instead – replace your objective statement with a qualifications summary.

#2 Formatting

Resumes can now be more creative than in the past. Your format doesn’t need to stick with one column, nor do you need to worry about keeping all of your information on one page. Use creative formatting to help emphasis important information, and highlight what you want your reader to notice.

#3 Share your expertise

Employers and recruiters want to be able to quickly identify whether or not you match the position’s requirements – using a separate box or highlighted area to identify your key areas of expertise will help those attributes stand out on the page.

#4 Use recommendations

Do you have a few good recommendations from your current or previous employers? If so – use them on the resume itself. It’s best to use recommendations from past managers instead of co-workers.

#5 Share accomplishments

Instead of simply rehashing the duties of your old positions, be sure to state what you achieved during your employment there. Companies want to know how you cut costs, increased revenue, or increased productivity. It may take some thought to come up with these for your old positions, but it will pay off in the end.

#6 Use hyperlinks

The majority of resumes are read online; take advantage of this by linking your resume to your LinkedIn profile, past employers, and any other relevant information. Use this sparingly and where it makes sense, however, don’t clutter your resume with links that don’t matter.

#7 Add a splash of color

Again, because many resumes are read online using color can make your resume stand out instantly. Don’t go overboard with color. Make sure the color and style you use fit with the job you are applying for. For example, a graphic designer may use more color in a resume over an executive who would use more basic tones and shades.

What trends have you seen in today’s resume?

How Attractive is Your Company Culture?

Today’s job seekers are interested in more than just the bottom line salary, benefits, and job titles – today’s candidates want to work for a company with an enjoyable company culture that they can be proud of.

When candidates seek out new employment opportunities they often want to know – before they are even hired – What’s the job really like, and what is the day-to-day energy of the company and the employees?

(HR Tip: You might want to do a web search on your company name + employee reviews. You can find online reviews of past employees and what they’ve think of your company and the culture. This would also give you an opportunity to write a response back and address any misinformation if required.)

Some questions to consider in the evaluation of your company culture include:

  • How well do employee’s work together?
  • How do employee’s and management communicate?
  • How does the company deal with new ideas and suggestions?
  • Have you recently undergone layoffs – how were these handled?
  • What does the company value?
  • What do the people in the company value?
  • How does the company cultivate culture?
  • How is conflict handled?
  • What is your turnover?

Company culture can be changed and improved, but it starts with awareness about the current state of the cultural dynamics.

Today’s candidates want companies that care about their people, foster opportunities, and offer a positive and balanced work environment. So, if you’d like candidates to clamor over your next open position place attention on your company culture and seek to improve it in all areas and functions.

What’s important to you in your company culture?

Job Search – How to Handle Rejection and Follow Up

Writen by Don Schenk

Last Saturday evening my wife and I visited friends at their home. They are a couple I have known since elementary school days, seventh grade as I recall. Yes, childhood! They grew up living next door to each other, dated during high school, and are still together. Last year they celebrated their 40th wedding anniversary.

They had invited several people for dinner – all of whom I have known since childhood. After dinner we were seated in their family room talking about some of the silly stuff that has happened over the years. Suddenly their cocker spaniel, who happens to have run of the furniture, wanted attention, and jumped into my lap. I was a little surprised, because at home we will not allow our dog on the couch, and I was not expecting little Rex to land on me. But I decided that is okay. I am a dog-person.

I petted Rex for a while, and when I stopped he stuck his muzzle under my arm and pushed upward – hard. He wanted to be petted more. A few minutes later when I again stopped, he gave me the muzzle-up treatment again. I said, “No, Rex,” but he continued to want me to rub under his ears. He would not take “No” for an answer. So he persisted. Rejection did not bother him. He simply continued to let me know what he wanted.

People do not enjoy rejection, and most will go out of their way to avoid it. Therefore they will no ask to be hired. They might be turned down. Then they do not try to contact the interviewer again a few days later to see how things stand. Have you been there? You have gone through an interview, did not get the job at that moment, and a couple days later when you want to call back, suddenly the telephone seems to weigh 2,000 pounds. You can not bring yourself to call.

Relax. The business is looking for a particular person to fill the job position, they had more interviews to do, and the owner wanted the office manager to interview everyone who applied – whether or not they qualify. You are on the list, and you helped put yourself at the top of their list. The squeaky wheel gets the grease. You just have to call to keep reminding them you exist. You have to be like little Rex, and not take no for an answer several times.

Almost nobody calls back to follow-up with the interviewer. How crazy is that? Other people applying for the job all have telephones that seem to weigh a ton. When you follow-up you are making yourself stand out again. Do it. You will be surprised.

Don Schenk has been conducting hiring interviews for four decades. The real, insider’s secret to Job Search is not what you think it is! Discover the 3 little-known strategies that will make the interviewer want to hire you within the first 30 to 40 seconds of the interview! Go to:

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