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Series 4113 Number 10 - 17 Steps in how to become lucky with your job search*

17 STEPS TO BECOME LUCKY WITH YOUR JOB SEARCH

Job search should not have to be difficult if it is done properly. Yet, I often run into candidates who seem to have a continuous run of bad luck in making a career transition. If you are having a tough time getting that first or next job, look over the following steps of how you can become lucky with your campaign.

1. JOB SEARCH KNOWHOW: Just lost your job? Don’t be in a rush to send out an old touched up resume. My advice is to learn what it takes to run a dynamic job search campaign and your old resume may not be your best. Super Job Search IV will give you step-by-step what you need to do and how to do it with examples. Before beginning any job search, learn what goes into a successful job-search campaign so you can be properly prepared to take advantage of opportunities that you will run into.

2. JOB VALIDATION: Are you sure that the job you will be going after really exists? Did you lose the job or did the industry lose it? Before writing your resume, stop and look at the job market and make sure that you are going after a job that exists for you and your skills. Use indeed.com to check the market.

3. ARE YOUR SKILLS CURRENT: Everyone should be proficient with the Microsoft Office Suite plus even more software if your job will call for it. If you know only a few strokes of each, now is the time to get some real training. The more software applications you know, the more options you will have. One or two hours an evening with courses at Lynda.com or MS Free Training can make you a pro and add bankable skills to your tool bag. To be sure, check what kind of skills companies are demanding. Sometimes it is better for you to acquire a specific skill before you go out on the job market. A local college or specialized training site can be a big help at this time.  

4. YOUR RESUME: Is it up-to-date? Is it full of clichés? Is it just a job description? Is it the one you have been using for your last job dressed up for this search? You need a fresh version. Write a resume that is driven by accomplishments, pointing your reader in the direction your career is headed. Be sure to align your accomplishments with your campaign and test it before release. See Super Job Search IV for samples.

5. OUTPLACEMENT: If you are offered outplacement services, work closely with your counselor. You both have the same objective: your success.

6. YOUR REFERENCES: Get your references on board with your campaign. Make sure that you understand how to do this and what information you need to give each.  Do not assume that they will have the best replies to a company’s inquiries. It is imperative that you “coach” your references to support your campaign.

7. PRACTICE: Practice your interviewing techniques before you go out to meet people. Use a recorder to hear how you sound. The more you practice, the better you become. Do not do your practice in live interviews. You will never get a second chance to make a brilliant first impression.

8. NETWORKING: When it comes to networking, do not just see people who can hire you. You should be meeting 15-20 people a week in Advice, or Research, or Direct interviews. Learn how to maximize each of those meetings before you begin your networking. See Super Job Search IV for techniques with each type of interview.
 
9. BE ORGANIZED: Take copious notes of each meeting so you won’t forget the next time you speak with that person. You want that information easily accessible when you get that call out of the blue from someone you might have met three weeks ago!

10. JOB SEARCH IS MORE THAN JUST A RESUME: Do not rely on a resume to get you a job. YOU must be the resume. Take the time needed to understand your accomplishments and how they could benefit a future employer and what resources you need to conduct a great campaign.

11. PLAN: Arrange your schedule the evening before so you wake up with an agenda and objectives for that day. Make calls until you have lined up at least three referral, research or direct interviews. Your days should be spent meeting people. Reserve your evenings or before 7 AM for the Internet. Resist sitting in front of a PC when you should be out talking with contacts. One great networking meeting is worth more than a 1,000 mailings.

12. MASTER THE TELEPHONE: Use the telephone to make appointments and avoid doing interviews by phone, unless it is absolutely necessary. For scripts on making successful calls, see the chapter “Telemarketing Yourself” in Super Job Search IV.

13. A THANK YOU NOTE OR E-MAIL IS LIKE A SECOND INTERVIEW: Send thank you e-mails or letters to everyone you meet. That person may just have another introduction for you.

14. GENERATE YOUR TARGET LIST OF PEOPLE AND COMPANIES: Organize your network and research your target company lists early on in your preparation and keep them up-to-date. Your network can lead you to introductions into your target companies.

15. NEVER GO OUT TO MEET A PERSON OR COMPANY UNPREPARED: Before visiting any company, do research prior to your meeting. Use MSN.com, Hoovers.com, finance.yahoo.com plus the company’s own website for research about its products, services, performance, growth and mission. See additional links to the Standard and Poor 500 and the Fortune 500 company lists at SuperJobSearch.com or App (superjobsearch). Most people have their profiles on LinkedIn or even may have a personal website. Learn as much as you can about each person you will encounter prior to your meeting.

16. STAY IN SHAPE: Keep your regular social life going; do not be a recluse. Get plenty of exercise. One of the best and easiest ways to exercise is a daily 30-45 minute brisk walk.

17. YOUR MISSION: Remember what your job search is all about: You are selling your skills. Your accomplishments demonstrate those skills. And your references verify your accomplishments, giving credibility to your campaign. You worked up to ten hours a day or more in your job. Put in at least 6-8 hours a day on your campaign. Job search is now your full-time job!

Best of luck!

 

For more on this subject, consult Super•JobSearch IV.

Go to Managing Your References on this website.

For free leads on thousands of jobs, advice and money-saving tools, be sure to check out the For Job Seekers section of our website.

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