At some point or other most of us have to look for a job. Whether it be part time while studying, an internship, that first job or just looking to move from our current employer. In this article I won’t cover the detailed approach to your job search like dealing with recruiters and how to manage your job portal presence, instead I want to discuss the frame of mind you have to be in before you even begin your search. I believe your attitude to your job search is the foundation for everything you do after that and sets the tone for success or failure.
Know what you want
“The indispensable first step to getting the things you want out of life is this: decide what you want.” Ben Stein. One of my favourite quotes. Don’t start looking for work by paging through newspapers and job portals and looking for a role that might fit your profile and pays a good salary. Start with yourself. What do you want to do? What industry would you like to do it in? How much would you like to be paid? What is the job market like? Are retrenchments eminent? Until you know this, don’t even begin applying for jobs because you will most likely find yourself making the wrong move or rushing into a job that might leave you frustrated.
Start where you are
We’ve all had that one colleague who’s really miserable at work. Walks in late, sulks through the day, doesn’t really pull his/her weight and then blames it on the poor working environment. These people will tell you they’ve been searching for a new job and will be a top performer somewhere else. Sound familiar? Well for me it’s simple, it starts where you are. Not denying that there are some really poor working environments out there, but that shouldn’t stop you trying to be the best you can be in that environment. Being in the market for a new job is not an excuse to drop your level of performance at your current employer. Your next job could be a promotion.
One of the questions I get asked as a recruiter is “how long do you think it will take?” There are candidates I’ve placed in a day, some candidates I’ve placed after months and some candidates I’ve never been able to place. So the answer to that is “I don’t know”. There are so many variables when placing a candidate that it really is hard to predict and even though we as recruiters know top candidates and get that feeling when we are confident of closing a deal we are never 100% sure. So even when searching for work on your own, be patient.
Never give up
If you know what you want, you’re performing at your current job and you’re confident in your ability then don’t give up on your search. Like I said, your job search could take a few days, months or years. What’s important is that you make the right move and not hop from employer to employer. Build relationships with hiring managers and recruiters. Make sure they don’t forget you by keeping them informed on how your career progresses and any additional accolades and qualifications. Soon enough the right opportunity will come.
What are your thoughts on my tips for where your job search should start? Give us your feedback and experiences in the comments tab below and let’s learn from your experiences.