Advice from Recent Job Seekers

Advice from Recent Job Seekers

Here’s What Job Seekers Want you to Know

Those of you who have been following this thread know that I’m sharing the results of research I conducted in the summer of 2015. This blog provides you with advice from recent job seekers – what they wish someone would have told them.

I asked everyone—those who had changed jobs and/or companies and those who had remained in the same position since I worked with them—what advice that would offer other job seekers. There was a wide range of advice given. The categories of responses that respondents most frequently talked about were:

  • –Constantly be networking/building rapport (by far the most frequent response)

–Know yourself/have confidence in what you have to offer

  • –Be persistent/don’t get discouraged/stay positive

–Hire a professional resume writer/have strong marketing materials

  • –Utilize LinkedIn

–Research and thoroughly prepare for the interview/research the geographic market

  • –Keep your skills current and marketable

–Looking for positions on job boards is a waste of time

  • –Don’t burn bridges!

–Looking for a job IS a full-time job

  • –Know when to move on (from your current position)

–Figure out your brand—don’t try to be all things to all people

  • –Get career coaching

–Tailor your resume

  • –Be resilient when you keep getting rejected—don’t get discouraged

There were a number of one-time responses, some of which I’ve listed here:

  • –Call people during non-business hours (no gatekeepers in place; the decision-maker will pick up the phone)

–Learn a second language; it’s a great differentiator

  • –Be strategic on who you connect with on LI—people at your level or higher

–Send paper thank you notes whenever possible

  • –Don’t be afraid to start in a temporary basis

–Stay active in your community as a way to maintain your professional profile

  • –Maintain a list of projects, descriptions, awards, etc. for when you update your resume

–Grieve for no more than one week after you lose your job, then get to work

  • –Be open—at least listen to an opportunity

–Be very organized during your job search

  • –Be willing to relocate

–People want to see who you know, which they can do on LinkedIn

  • –Don’t get sucked into a “good enough” position

–Be ready with interview questions that show you’re a higher-level thinker

  • –Keep your performance high, even if you’re not happy at your current employer


Best practices tip #7:

By hearing what recent job seekers wish someone would have told them, you can benefit from their experience. If we focus on the top six responses, the message is: You MUST network, you have to have confidence and be persistent, do your homework, utilize LinkedIn, and hire a professional resume writer to have top-notch marketing materials.

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