Finding a job-is a job-and it needs to be treated as such. It is challenging to stay motivated and keep on task when job searching. One way you can help yourself is by getting organized.
Start with a schedule. Think about what you do what days. Mondays and Fridays are not good days for follow up. These are good days to do online work such as researching local companies and networking on LinkedIn. As you create your schedule, consider timing, you don’t want to call people during lunch or at the very beginning or end of the work day. Your schedule might look something like this:
7 am Breakfast
8 am Company research
10 am Follow up calls
11 am Yoga Class
12 noon Lunch with friend
1 pm Toastmasters
3 pm Customize Resumes
4 pm LinkedIn Networking
5 pm Dinner with Sam
7 pm Social Time
Be sure to add some time to invest in yourself. This could be professional seminars, on-line workshops, improving typing speed or office skills. Include time to relax, socialize and exercise. It can be discouraging to look for a job and you need to be sure you are doing some self care.
As you create your schedule, think about how you are spending your time. According to Richard Bolles, author of “What color is my Parachute”, replying to ads only has a success rate of 4%*. To spite this, often this is the very task job seekers focus on. Instead, Mr. Bolles recommends networking (see Networking – a How to Guide).
Asking people if they know of positions in your field works a remarkable 33% of the time and knocking on the doors of employers works 47% of the time.* Make sure you are spending more time on this type of networking. It may be attending professional association or alumni events. You might be “knocking on the door” virtually by connecting to employers on LinkedIn.
It is important to treat your search like a job of its own and develop a strategy. By developing a strategy and focused approach you can improve your chances. What does your job search schedule look like?
* Richard Bolles, “The 10 Best and Worst Ways to Look for a Job,” Forbes, 5 September 2016 http://www.forbes.com/sites/nextavenue/2016/09/05/the-10-best-and-worst-ways-to-look-for-a-job/#2a983d57d5d8