My current contract is ending soon. I have about 3 months to find another contract or full time work. This post is all about gearing up my mindset for job search. I write it because many people overlook the fact that the mindset we have toward job search can have a large impact on our level of success.
Job search can be a chore, especially when we are pressured by lack of income when we are out of work or lack of time when we have to do it on top of a full time job. But I am here to tell you job search can also be fun. When you make it into a game, you can enjoy the process more and achieve better results. Why is it fun? 3 reasons
- A chance to “date” many companies and roles – Job search is just like dating – a mutual exercise between you and the company looking for talent to see if there is a mutual fit. This way you get to see what you may like and don’t like
- Hone your work brand and feel good about yourself – Successful job search requires you to market your best work self to others. While this may be a little bit of work, it’s a great exercise to take stock on all your accomplishments and feel good about them. This include creating a tailored resume, updating Linkedin, but also includes how you speak about yourself to others when you network for a job. If you are naturally too humble, ask a friend to help you. I bet you they have a higher opinion of you.
- Reconnect with your network in a meaningful way – you may think “ugh, I don’t want bother other people.” If you network the right way, then not only will you get a chance to reconnect with people but they can feel good in helping you in meaningful way. Humans in general like to help others.Network tip from a recruiter – Make sure you ask you for something specific with every networking opportunity. It’s not enough to say to a friend or contact, “I am interested in working for your company…” and then your friends says “great send me your resume and I will see what I can do.” Usually this will go NOWHERE. Instead, do a little more research up front and ask your friend for a specific favor. For example, “I am very interested in department X in your company, can you introduce me to someone there for an info interview.” Or “I saw this job opening at your company, would you feel comfortable to refer me internally for the position?” These latter examples give your network contact a specific direction to help.
So how can you make job search a game? Have the right expectations!
- Expect 2 out of 10 instead of perfection. Realistic expectations will take out the unnecessary anxiety that often can accompany job search. In dating, men would say “out of 10 phone numbers they get, only 2 of them really end up in anything (a date, “sleepover” :-)) ” Women would say “only 1 out of 10 or 100 men we kiss, may turn into prince charming.” Job search works the same way – don’t worry about un-replied emails and lack of invitation to one interview. It’s all part of the game. Your goal is to bat 2 out of 10 in anything you do and keep going until you find your dream job. The biggest obstacle in job search isn’t the amount of opening out there or the competition. Often times, it is ourselves. If we feel defeated, we will most likely take less action. Without action, nothing can happen. So take action and expect 2 out of 10.
- Expect to have job search disaster stories. Have you ever had a bad interview, bad phone call, embarassing networking exchanges? If you say no, then I don’t believe you. We all have our off moments. The key is what do you do next. Many people dwell on it and beat themselves up. That leads to low motivation and again less action going forward. I say do the opposite – share it with friends and laugh about it and then forgive and forget. Everyone can relate. Just like in dating where you can have some horrendous dates, it’s all worthwhile when you get a chance to retell the story.
Lastly, I would remind myself and others – those who plan and act on it will win the game. My favorite quote for work and life is “Vision without action is a daydream; Action without vision is a nightmare.” My next step in my job search is to develop my plan. What about you? I will share it once I have it. Wish me luck!
Let the job search game begin! 🙂 I look forward to sharing my job search disaster stories with you! 🙂
Comments: What do you do to make job search fun? Does this post help you? I look forward to your comments below.
Best wishes to your job search