1 Prioritize Your Wellbeing and Self Care
Self-care is not optional. It is critical. Taking care of you must be your number one priority.
Truth is, it’s going to be a challenge to get a new opportunity if you are not feeling your best and energized. Looking for a new job is always a stressful situation. You need to take care of your mind, body, and soul. Eat well and exercise. Balance dreaming, doing, and recharging. Ensure you are doing something kind for yourself every day.
2 Identify and Use Your Strengths
You need to know your superpowers and develop a plan to use them. Is building relationships your best skill? Get busy networking. You are a savvy organizer? What kind of process can you put in place to support your job hunt?
If you haven’t taken a strengths assessment recently, consider taking the free Values in Action one. (https://www.viacharacter.org) It’s scientifically proven that those who use their strengths are 18 times more successful and happy in life. That sure sounds like what we all want!
Consider this transition time as an opportunity to move forward into something even better aligned with what you really want to do and a life that will bring you great joy.
3 Update Your Materials Prioritizing your Strengths
Using your strengths as a lens, rework all of your materials including your resume and Linkedin profile. These are selling materials so don’t be shy. Brag about your skills and accomplishments. You want to find the right balance between using keywords that recruiters will be looking for and words that will make you stand out as a unique candidate.
Consider creating a one-page Bio if you don’t have one. A Bio is more of a story about you, your strengths, successes, and what you want to do. Get creative. Have fun with it. Make this something you are proud of and excited to share with the world.
Create a balance between formal and bold but not too gimmicky or outlandish. It’s competitive out there. Spend time ensuring your sales and marketing materials are as strong as they can be.
4 Network within Your Contacts
Linkedin research suggests that 85% of jobs filled are based on networking. Wow. No excuses allowed. Get the word out to everyone you know. A broad-reaching approach is to do a post on Linkedin letting your network know you are open to new opportunities. I have even heard success stories with people using Facebook for getting the word out to those you know.
Also, go through your connections and reach out to people individually. You must rally those relationships closest to you. They are the ones who will be most willing and able to hire you, recommend you, and let you know when they hear of an opportunity perfect for you.
5 Network with Strangers
This is perhaps the most uncomfortable but ripe with potential. One of my favorite quotes is “Fortune favors the bold” via Virgil. Identify your dream companies and then use Linkedin to find and start communicating with people doing the job you would love to do. The Linkedin Premium fee is well worth the money as you can send personal messages to anybody. You can also use detective skills, google, and read articles to find people who could be willing to give you tips and help you navigate.
6 Apply on Job Boards
I put this last purposefully. This is where most people start. Using Indeed, Glassdoor and Linkedin Jobs should absolutely be part of your strategy but not the primary one and not your first step.
When you do find a job that you are really interested in, just don’t upload your application and materials and cross your fingers. You have to go back to networking within your contacts or with strangers to find someone who will help you get your resume where it needs to be.
Remember to take good care of you. Stay positive and proactive. Be bold! Use your strengths and have fun networking. While a challenge, consider this transitional time a major opportunity to create what comes next in your grand life adventure.