Finding a Job During the Holidays

1 Dec

Hiring may slow down during the holiday season, but smart candidates don't stop their search.

Thanksgiving 2010 has already passed us by.  We’re plagued with negative news of a poor economy. If your own employment situation hasn’t been personally affected by the nation’s “jobless recovery,” you certainly know people close to you who have been touched by the issue.

But enough of the bad news!  You are looking for a new job, and there are companies who are hiring.  What is the best way to manage a successful job search during the holidays?  How can you make the most effective use of your time, to improve your chances of getting hired?

Here are the top three tips for a successful job search during the Christmas season:

  1. Always tailor your resume for the position you are applying. For example, your background is retail management, and you are applying for management positions in hospitality and financial services.  There is no “one size fits all” resume that will articulate your value for every job and industry.  You must customize your resume to illustrate how your previous experience can be applied to the new field.  (Candidates who implement this tip get fast results.  To receive a complimentary resume analysis, click here.)
  2. Be diligent in your search efforts – make finding a job your full-time gig, until you accept an offer. Many job seekers take a look at the job boards, or classifieds, don’t find any opportunities that match what they’re looking for, and quit looking for the day.   If that’s your approach, you will fail.  The job market is competitive.  You have to bring your “A” game.  Stop being a victim of the recession, and take control.  If you’re unemployed now, you should be spending at least 2 – 4 hours per day, Monday through Saturday, searching for possible positions. Research local companies to find out if they hire individuals with your expertise.  If you’re just getting started, and looking for an entry-level job, focus on those companies that have regular turn-over.  Leverage the social networks to speak with hiring managers and employees of companies in your area to get leads and referrals. Finding a job around the holidays is competitive, so be “in it to win it.”
  3. Physically walk in to the companies who have jobs. The internet is a wonderful tool for companies to screen prospective employees.  Unfortunately, you are judged exclusively on “virtual” paper.  Take your job search to the next level, and see the results.  Walk in to the company you wish to apply with.  Yes, they may tell you can only submit your resume/application through their website.  No problem.  Ask whomever you speak with for the name of the hiring manager, so you can follow up with them.  They may or may not tell you – but if you don’t ask, they’ll NEVER tell you.  If you’re speaking with a receptionist, ask him or her how they like working there.  Get information you can use to help you get a job with this company.

Going through the holiday season without a job prospect can be tough.  Are you doing everything you can to secure your next opportunity?  Get assertive.  Don’t be afraid to talk to people.  Leverage social networks, and the people you know to help get your foot in the door.

Good luck with your job search – and Merry Christmas!

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