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If you have been unhappy in your job for quite some time, you likely can’t wait to escape for a week or two over the Christmas period. Of course, this time is all about relaxing and catching up with loved ones, and you need to enjoy this well-earned break. However, if you are already dreading that first day back in the New Year, then you may want to set some time aside during the holidays to focus on searching for a role which will make you feel fulfilled next year. To help you, we have collated some of our most popular advice to form your ultimate guide to job searching over the festive period.
Even with intentions of being productive, it’s easy to get distracted over the Christmas break; whether it’s catching up with friends and family, or spending your days watching your favorite Christmas films. You deserve to enjoy this break, but do try to plan pockets of time in advance where you focus solely on covering each stage of the job search strategy outlined below. Set some time aside to search for jobs, even if it’s just a couple of hours for your first few days of. So this at a time when you are most productive, such as first thing in the morning.
Now onto the job search itself. Avoid jumping straight into your search without really contemplating what it is you want from your next opportunity. This could be the very reason your last role didn’t work out. Instead, now that you have some time set aside, use it to craft your ideal opportunity; from the job remit, possible progression paths and how they align to your long-term career goals, to the company size, culture and industry. Perhaps take some time to write down the key criteria for your perfect job. That alone can be a very revealing exercise as it pushes you to write down descriptors of your ideal work environment.
Once you have your ideal role cemented in your mind, it’s time to update your resume, tailoring it to each opportunity you apply for. You resume should answer these three key questions:
Remember that your resume is essentially your pitch – a pitch that succinctly answers all those burning questions your audience (i.e. recruiters and hiring managers) have about you. Also the degree to which your resume can answer their questions well, will have a huge bearing on whether you are invited to interview. Make sure your answers are strong, clear, tailored and relevant.
It’s also essential that your online professional profiles are up to date, and your presence on these networks is optimized. Like with your resume, tailor your online profiles to emphasize the skills which align to the type of opportunity you are looking for. Also try to engage with your network, following the people who inspire you within your industry, liking, sharing and commenting on relevant content, and on the whole, building a stronger online brand for yourself. Building your online brand takes time, so keep this activity consistent. Your social media strategy should be for life, not just for Christmas.
At this point you should be feeling ready to put yourself forward for roles. It is important that you keep your spirits high during your job search, even if you don’t get an interview for a role that you really wanted. Not every application leads to job search success, but don’t give up. It can help to talk about your next move and your search progress with mentors, friends and family. You should also take regular breaks and reward yourself for a productive job searching session. The key is to stay motivated.
If 2021 really does spell “new year, new career” for you, then set some time aside over the festive break to really consider what it is you are looking for, and how you will strive to achieve this. Hopefully this job search advice will help you in driving your career success forward, both now and in the future.
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