With my apologies to mental health professionals, Albert Einstein said “The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again expecting different results.” Some of us have spent the majority of our career search either trying to obtain employment or switch jobs, with little or no demonstrable results. After several months of little success, it is time to evaluate what we have been doing in looking for work, determine what has been working and what has not. By determining where we are struggling in the job search process, we can focus effort on integrating techniques that will speed us along to achieve career goals. What has been working and what has not? Ask yourself the following questions:
Am I submitting my resume/cover letter and getting very little response?
Have I been asking my network of contacts for help but not gotten the type of help I was looking for?
Have I been getting pre-screening calls for interviews but not being asked to come in?
Have I been getting initial interviews but not been asked to come back for the next stage?
Have I had multiple interviews but no offers?
Have I received offers but still find myself without a satisfactory position?
Review the strategies below, thinking about the extent to which each may help make your job search more effective. I will fully explore each technique to provide you with confidence in your ability to apply it to your personal search:
Target the industry in which you would like to work and the role you are qualified to play instead of just looking for any job.
Determine if you need any additional skills to obtain that job and seek out resources for gaining those skills.
Spend time giving back to your network so that you may ask for help in return.
Change your resume and cover letter for every job for which you apply.
Prepare for interviews by reading articles about the company online and speaking to people who work for the company.
Practice interview questions extensively in advance.
Grow your LinkedIn profile and be proactive in using that network to help you find a job.
Use Facebook and Twitter to spread the word to your network of what you are looking for and why you are qualified.
Keep track of the jobs you applied as to be best prepared when you receive a response.
Treat your job search as a fulltime job (40-50 hours per week)
When applying for work, apply through the traditional methods (online application/emailing resume/fax/mail) and then find a connection on LinkedIn/networking to advocate for you.
Research the value of your current skills/experience/knowledge in today’s market in order to negotiate your salary most effectively.
Consider transitional employment that will help you utilize some of your current skills and gain experience that you can utilize going forward. Consider using a reputable Career Coach to maximize successful results during every phase of your search.
By taking a dynamic approach to your job search, you are sure to increase your chances for success.
About the Author: Lavie Margolin is a New York-based Career Coach and the author of Lion Cub Job Search: Practical Job Search Assistance for Practical Job Seekers. To learn more, go to Lavie’s website, Lion Cub Job Search: www.Lioncubjobsearch.com