Laying the groundwork
Job hunting can be tough. Whether you just started looking for a job or you've been searching for jobs for months No matter where you are in your job search chances are you've felt like you ran smack dab into a brick wall at least once.
These tips are designed not only to help you break through that brick wall but to help you land a job you'll really like. Ready? Great! Here we go...
Job Tip #1 Get Serious
But you ARE serious... right? Of course you are. By "get serious", I'm talking about making a personal decision. Up until now, chances are, you've been looking for "a" job. "A" as in "any job" or maybe "any job you qualify for". Well forget that.
From now on burn this idea into your head: you are going to get an incredible job, a great job, an amazing job. From this point on you refuse to settle for anything less than the best the world has to offer you. Got that? Good. NOW you're serious!
Job Tip #2 Take Stock
Right now is the perfect time to take a good look at your past. Make a list of your dreams, desires and wishes. Go all out. Don't pull any punches. List all your past jobs - big, small, good and bad. Don't leave anything out
here. For each one write down all the details you can remember about each.
What you liked, what you didn't like and so forth. Write down what you accomplished in each position. Try to include as much detail as possible. If there are any facts you can document then do it. What you should end up with is the most complete job history you've ever had.
Don't worry if it's a book. No employer will ever see all of it. In the end you should have everything you've ever done or wanted to do at your fingertips. Take as much time as you need for this.
After you've finished with paying jobs, do the same for your school career, any volunteer work, and your hobbies. Include everything. Sweep out those corners. Become your own best detective. Remember this is serious stuff.
Job Tip #3 Get Organized
Maybe you're a natural organizational freak. If so then you've probably already done everything in this section. But I'm guessing you'll check just to be sure... right? And if you're NOT "uber-organized" - now's the time to get your ducks in a row.
Now you want to organize all of this. I won't tell you how. Just arrange it all so it makes sense for you. Looking ahead you're going to make a list of the tasks
you like to do so it may help to keep this in mind.
Job Tip #4 Do Some Weeding
You need to make four lists.
1. Things you like doing
2. Things you do NOT like doing
3. Things you are good at
4. Things you stink at
Feel free to modify the titles of the list to suit you. Notice everything will end up on two lists. If you need to make some "in-between" lists of things that don't fit these categories - go for it.
Now make a list of things you are good at and you like doing. Go ahead and make another list of things you like doing and would like to learn to be good at it if you wish.
Okay, you need to make one more list - your list of marketable skills. The goal here is to make this list as long as possible so the more marketable skills you have the more options you'll have available. Reality may may present some trade-offs. If you want to be a police detective, you're going to have to do paperwork.
Job Tip #5 Get Focused
Now you have a list of marketable skills to offer potential employers. Now you have some real choices to make. If your number one marketable skill is something you love doing, you'll spend most of your time using this skill in a job and it's in great demand - you're set. This kind of "fit" simply won't happen for most of us. From here we will take this list and start matching it jobs where we can spend as much time as possible doing what we love while minimizing the time spent on more unpleasant tasks.
In the next installment, I'll show you how to turn this list into the kind of job you've always dreamed of having.
For some great job search resources visit my resource page here.