How to Persevere When the Job Search Gets You Down
We’ve all been discouraged when it takes longer than we expected it would to get results. For those who feel like they’re drowning in the job market, you’re not alone!
And sometimes, it really has little to do with any of your efforts. You might be doing everything by the book – fine-tuning your resume, sending clear and concise queries, filling out applications to the letter – and yet your phone just isn’t ringing. Don’t let the wait bring down your confidence; job searches generally take some time anyway, and it could mean that you simply haven’t found your best fit yet. In the meantime, we’ve got a few strategies that will help you keep your spirits up and get that much closer to meeting your career goals.
Review where you’ve applied and why you sent in your resume in the first place. If you’ve been out of work for a while, then it may have been for the simple reason that you needed to start making a regular paycheck again. But if you have some leeway, there could be a lot of different factors at play. If you haven’t already, make a list of the jobs you’ve applied for and evaluate which ones you want the most. Then, you’ll know what kind of positions you’ll want to apply to in the future, in case none of those get back to you.
Make a wish list
What kind of company or organization do you want to work for? Maybe you’re looking for your next job in the wrong places. And it never hurts to go a little idealistic if time isn’t a factor. Start with your personal goals and values, then delve a little deeper into the professional ones to create a profile of your ideal employment situation. You can do this with job titles or even departments – the important thing about this exercise is that you’re identifying what will be better for you in the long run, rather than fixating on a quick solution that may or may not end up being sustainable.
While we don’t encourage pestering potential employers, we do believe that if there’s a job you really wanted, it’s totally acceptable to follow up after a week or two of putting in your application. Check any online listings first to make sure the job is still available, then draft a follow-up email to send to the same address you gave your resume. Call only if you have a more specific question; chances are, the person vetting applications has his or hands full, and would prefer to get back to you via email when it’s more convenient.
You don’t necessarily have to come into a job by formally applying to it. If your applications or queries aren’t getting any traction, try going to networking events in your area to meet likeminded professionals. Putting a face to the name can go a long way in building your reputation and a potential employer’s willingness to have you in for an interview. So break out your business casual wear, print off some fresh business cards, and get out there!
Just because it takes longer than you’d like doesn’t mean the search for a better job is in vain. Keep your chin up, and contact our consultants if you’d like some help prepping for your next interview or retooling your resume!