Thursday, December 12, 2013

End-of-the-Year Audits Work for Job Search Too

If you do what you've always done, you'll get what you always got!
This simple truth works for many things in life - your job search too! 

As the year winds down, and the holiday events you attend become fewer, take some time to review your job search activity to figure out where you can do a better job in order to achieve your goal -- a new job! 

Before jumping into 2014 with a continuation of the same search you've been conducting  -- doing the same old things you've been doing  -- give some critical thought to how your search has been going.  How?  By performing a A Job Search Audit.  It can tell you how you’re doing - really!     

Review your job activity, starting at the very beginning, in a methodical and complete manner - that is key!  Identify every activity and chart your activity on a spreadsheet - computerized or paper and pen - it doesn't matter which.  Focus on contacts and outcomes of those contacts.  This review, your Job Search Audit, will give you some clues and ques about. . . 
(1)  What you ARE doing well - a telltale sign is activity that is generated by your efforts
  • Networking meetings, e-mails, offers of assistance from colleagues, interviews, final interviews in which you are one of 2 or 3 finalists, i.e., close-call interviews, invitations to meet, job offers, etc.
(2)  What you are NOT doing well - a telltale sign is little to no “external ”activity –
  • Spending your days alone at your computer, sending countless resumes to companies with no response from them or sending countless applications with the same lack of response.
  • Few, if any, networking meetings, e-mails from companies and colleagues, offers of assistance from colleagues, interviews, professional society meetings, invitations to meet, job offers, no “close call-interviews” etc.                                                                                                
Here are the steps to perform your Job Search Audit:
Step 1.  To perform your audit, set aside a block of time in which you can devote your total attention - no interruptions!
Step 2.  Next, if possible, find a “job search buddy” with whom you can talk through the review.  
             - If your resources allow, a trained Job Search coach will help you move through the audit expeditiously.
Step 3.  Third, review your Career Strategy.  Take out your Marketing Plan.  Create a chart and identify any and all responses you have what response you have received from your:
     - target companies, 
     - applications, and 
     - network contacts.
Step 4.  Chart your follow-up with each (Note:  Follow-up is not a one-time e-mail or follow-up phone call; it is a consistent process.) 
  • List each response you received and the action you took in response.  
  • Identify how many interchanges occurred. 
  • Where did the communication die?  
  • Who dropped the ball?
Step 5.  Fourth, review your resume.  You have learned a lot about your industry and the role you are seeking in your industry if you have been conducting a consistent and active job search campaign.  
  • Based on your current knowledge of your industry/target companies, and their advertised positions, 
  • as well as your current knowledge about what you REALLY want to do
  • Ask Yourself:  "Does my resume need revision?"  
Spot the holes and fill the gaps
When you look at your activity this way, you will be able to spot "holes" or gaps in your activity.  Plan to plug these holes in your activity going forward.  It may make the critical difference. 
For additional information on marketing yourself and your capabilities, please refer to the many articles found under the Articles tabs of the AJC–Career Strategy website.
 ____________________________________________________________________________                 AJC - for Your Career Path
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