10 Job Searching Strategies.

The holidays can be a very quiet time of the year for finding job opportunities. You don’t have to let the holidays slow you down, however. Here are 10 job search strategies that will keep your options open. And who knows? Follow through with these strategies and you might find some new job opportunities that you never knew existed.

1.Maximise The Benefits of LinkedIn
First, make sure your Linkedin profile is up to date AND that it’s highly searchable. Google loves Linkedin. If you’ve ever Googled someone, almost invariably their LinkedIn profile shows up near the top of the search return list.
Next, tap into your LinkedIn network, or if you have lots of good contacts in your phone or computer contacts folder, use that as a way of reminding yourself who you could connect with. The saying "your network is your net worth" is particularly relevant when it comes to finding out about unadvertised job opportunities. Let your networks know what sort of opportunity you’re looking for and reaffirm the key value you can add. Keep yourself at the top of their mind and they are more likely to share with their network.

2. Treat Yourself…Go To A Function
Attend an industry networking or industry Christmas function. Introduce yourself to other experts and ask them what they are working on. Make sure you get their card and/or contact details and then connect with them on LinkedIn.

3. Think About Your Past Performance
Reflect on your 360-degree feedback reports and your performance reviews, and/or general company feedback. What is one of the softer skills you could improve on? For example, were you lacking executive presence? If so, find out what the key elements of executive presence are. http://www.businessinsider.com.au/the-7-traits-of-executive-presence-2013-9?r=US&IR=T
Could you get some career/executive coaching? What about connecting with someone that has this skill in spades and asking them if you could have an informal mentor relationship/coffee with them once a month? Model some of their methods that work with your style. Refine and develop, but still keep the essence of ‘You’, because you are unique and amazing!

4. Pick Up Some New Technical Skills
Think of one or two technical skills you could improve or learn. There might be short, online courses, or free tutorials on YouTube. Buy lunch or dinner for someone you know who has that skill and ask for some tips/training. You could even go shadow someone for a day to see how they do things in their particular work environment.
Whatever new skill you do learn, make sure you celebrate! Get excited and pat yourself on the back for adding another needed skill to your repertoire.

5. Tweak That Resume
Now is a really good time to ask a trusted friend or colleague for a second opinion on your resume. Ask them what the first page tells them about you. Edit accordingly if it's not the message you are trying to convey.

6. Help Someone Else
Put your hand up to help an NFP(not for profit) that would benefit from your expertise. Take on a piece of work that will still allow you freedom/time to search for work. You could even head down to one of Melbourne’s many co-working spaces (Hub or Village) and offer up your expertise to help startup businesses one morning a week. You’d be utilising and reaffirming your skills and getting some warm fuzzy feelings for contributing to the community. It’s been widely noted that contribution and meaning are big propellers of happiness…

7. Positive And Negative Don’t Mix
Surround yourself with positive people. The people around you impact how you see yourself. It’s important that you are around people that are uplifting, honest and caring.
It also helps to read and watch inspiring and motivating books and movies. Who knows, you might even learn something new!

8. Fit Body, Fit Mind
Stay physically active. Exercise (plus eating right, getting enough sleep and drinking plenty of water) is really important to keep your energy levels (both physical and emotional) up. Job hunting can be really tough. So keep up with the golf, tennis, cricket, group running, yoga or whatever it is you do, but get that blood pumping through your veins and sending oxygen to your brain. Reset the body after (or even during) a difficult day.
In fact, you also need to reset your mind when things haven’t been going so well. Physical exercise helps, but mediation, breathing exercises or other mind-calming (but not mind-numbing) activities can really help. Ending the day by writing down three things that you are thankful or grateful for can help you go to sleep with a more positive attitude than stewing about everything that is going wrong.

9. Let Those Emotions Out
Our society has a tendency to just tell people to “suck it up” when things don’t go the way we want. That’s not always a healthy approach though. Bottling up our emotions usually just means they intensify and often get expressed, without us meaning to, in ways that are bad for us or for the people around us.
Acknowledge your emotions and talk to a friend about your disappointments or the anger that you feel from being overlooked for a role. Be proud of putting yourself out there; it takes courage, and it takes resilience to move forward. Think about what you have gained from the experience, for example: interview practice, finding out industry information, getting a chance to express yourself, etc. The benefits are what you make of them.

10. Find The Best Companies
Read up and talk to others to find out what companies are leading the way. Talk to your recruiter about companies you would like to work for and ask them to act as your ambassador to get you in front of key decision-makers for a coffee or catch-up to discuss opportunities. Then make sure you ask those decision makers to recommend two other people you could meet with.
Talk to your network to find people you can ask about what it is like to work for these “best” companies. You want to make sure that wherever you end up working, it’s for a place where you can feel welcome, as well as being challenged to grow.

11. And One More For Good Measure…
Take some time to reflect on what motivates you. What gets you out of bed in the morning? Make sure that what motivates you is aligned to the opportunities you are applying for. If there is a really big mismatch between the two, you should probably rethink your approach. Why would you want a life of misery trying to be a square peg in a round hole!

So, if you are job hunting and the holidays have got you worried because all the potential bosses are going away for some rest and relaxation, don’t despair. Whip your LinkedIn profile into shape, talk to lots of people in your networks, reflect on how well you’ve done in the past and if you need to learn new skills do a course or get someone to mentor you. Stay physically and mentally healthy by helping others, exercising regularly and surrounding yourself with positive people.

If you are job hunting over the Christmas period or you’ve had to do that in the past, what other things would you add to this list? What are some important strategies that you might utilise? Please share your ideas in the comments section so others can benefit from your experience.

Contact Clare Phelan at Pursuit Consulting at clare@www1.pursuitconsulting.com.au.
We look forward to working with companies and people that are looking to THRIVE! If you would like to engage in Career Coaching, Career Transitions workshops, LinkedIn Profiling/branding coaching please get in touch ON 0407 803 095