So you’re looking for your first job or searching for a new one. Congratulations! You are taking your future into your own hands! Grabbing the bull by the horns! You’ve studied and interned and networked like nobody’s business. You will soon be a part of the workforce and a contributing member of society! Instead of being “Bob the student/bartender/guy in the corner”, you will be “Bob the Something Important!” Go you!
A few months and many applications later, you still have yet to hear back about any opportunity. You spend your late nights scrolling through LinkedIn dreaming about when your career is about to take off. But fear not, Bob – during the toughest of times is when true character is tested. Brush your shoulders off and be your own job search cheerleader with the chants below.
1) “It’s not me, it’s them.”
The truth is, open positions come in waves. Depending on your field, there are certain times of year when there may be more openings than others. For example, if you want to work at a marketing agency, there is a higher likelihood of jobs being available at the end or beginning of the year when new contracts are signed and budgets increase. If you want to get into production or academia, the summer might be a better time to look when they are planning on programs for the fall.
2) “I’m awesome, my resume says so.”
Wait, does your resume and LinkedIn really say so? It might be worth getting your resume revamped with a clean new layout or more active words. For LinkedIn, if you fill out your description with enough relevant key terms (marketing, social, research), recruiters will be better able to find you.
3) “My eyes are on the prize.”
Instead of applying to every relevant job opening there is, try a different approach. Work on creating a list of places you would love to work at, or the top places for your field. By creating one list of companies, you can focus on them and stay up-to-date on any new openings they have versus applying to anything and everything. Set up Google Alerts, follow them on Twitter, and reach out to some of their current employees.
4) “Worrying is wasted energy.”
Instead of pacing and wearing a hole through your floor while waiting to hear back, use your energy to write a blog post, follow up with people in your network, or browse sites relating to your field.
5) “I’m mad goal-oriented.”
You write in all of your cover letters that you are very goal oriented. Instead of trying to accomplish the overwhelming task of finding a job, break it up into smaller goals, like “Apply to two jobs a week” or “Email three contacts for informational interviews.”
6) “Opportunities are everywhere.”
Sometimes you need to be creative in a job search. Browsing LinkedIn late at night sounds like a good idea, but there are hundreds of other people doing the same thing. Try a different tactic. Search paid internships if you’re looking for entry level. Look or part-time or volunteering opportunities. Take freelance gigs that last a few months.
7) “Take a breather.”
You’ve heard that searching for a job should be a full-time job, but even jobs offer breaks. Make sure you take a day to recharge, unwind, and NOT think about your job search.
8) “Every experience is a learning experience.”
When searching for a new job, you might find yourself putting a ton of pressure on every interview or application. Instead, think of it as a learning experience. If the interview didn’t go well or you didn’t hear back, what could you have done differently? Maybe next time you decide to do more research beforehand, email a person directly at the company, or be a bit more relaxed during the interview.
9) “Positivity pays off.”
It may be tough to be optimistic, but if you can stay positive, it will pay off in the end. If your friend gets a job before you, take them out for congratulatory coffee. Go to a networking event and smile like you mean it. People will remember you for your positive attitude and keep you in mind when they hear of an opportunity.
There is a job out there for everyone. If you didn’t hear back from a job, believe that it wasn’t meant to be. If you stay true to what you want and what your goals are, everything will fall into place.
How do you stay positive during the job search? Share with us in the comments!