If you are in a job transition, either by entering the workforce, changing jobs, or after you’ve been laid off or fired, you will need to have a plan of attack for how you will find your next job. Your job search strategy is your roadmap for how you will go about finding and obtaining a job. Even if you know where you want to go, you still need a well thought-out strategy or plan that will give you focus and streamline your efforts. If you haven’t decided what type of job, or career path you want to obtain, that would be a good start; research one or more jobs that interest you to determine if they are a good fit for you, the types of organizations that hire, pay and benefits, etc. Having a specific job in mind will help you streamline your efforts. Here are 3 ways to develop your job strategy:
1. Set Goals - write out what it is you want to accomplish, being very specific. You will want to include daily goals and weekly goals for how you will perform you job search, such as update resume, search for open positions, research companies in my target market, or develop my introduction or elevator speech.
2. Develop a plan of action - these are the specific steps you will take either on a daily or weekly basis. These actions steps are the tasks you need to perform, and that will motivate you to take you closer to achieving your goals. Such items may include: which databases or books you will research to learn about companies you’ve targeted and how many (ex. 5 daily); what type of format you will use for your resume (functional, chronological, etc.); how many phone calls or letter you will send out ( 10 letter and 3 phone calls). Make sure that these actions steps feel comfortable for you and that will give you reason to act. For example, if you don’t like cold calling, then don’t put this type of action on your list or you won’t follow through).
3. Write down your plan of action - put your goals and action steps in front of you by writing them down; put them in your planner or on a calendar, write them on a tablet or whiteboard. It doesn’t matter as long as you keep them in front of you. Doing so will validate your goals; you will feel empowered when you check of a task on your list. It is motivating and will keep you moving to the next task.
It is recommended that you do a weekly check up to see how you are doing on the goal or goals you’ve set. Are you making progress? What did you get done, what did you not get done, what did you want to accomplish but didn’t and why. Be sure to identify relaxation or fun activities and a support system to help you. Answering these questions will give you a big picture of how you are doing and will give you staying power throughout the course.