Think Outside the Box When Looking for a Job
With the current competitive landscape of the job market, it’s a no brainer that you have to get creative and resourceful when looking for your next job. It’s unlikely that you are going to find your next paycheck from the company advertising on Monster.com or even on a hiring company’s website. However, the friend whom you play tennis or take Zumba classes with, may just hold the keys to your next paying gig.
I was in awe of my close friend, who has been a stay-at-home mom for years now, having three interviews with three different companies within a two week span. She decided it was time for her to go back to work, part-time to start, now that her kids are older and the oldest one can keep an eye on the two younger ones. She shifted her mindset to finding a job, and let everyone in her life know her intentions. She was ready, and she opened herself up to the possibilities of re-entering the workforce.
The Power of Your Personal Networks
My friend has a number of different groups and activities that she is involved in. She belongs to a book club, plays tennis, takes Zumba classes, volunteers at her kids’ school, keeps up with old friends, is active at church, and is an overall warm and caring person. She is social and quick with a compliment. When it was time for her to start looking for a job, she was able to tap into the large network she created for herself. The people she associates with weren’t the ones who had a position to offer her, but they knew of positions that were currently looking to be filled and for which she was qualified.
My friend updated her resume (she believes a part-time position at her kids’ school last year helped get her foot back in the business door) and sent it to the folks directly responsible for assisting in the hiring process for three different positions at three different companies. She received interviews for each position. A couple of days after one of the interviews, she was offered a part time job at a company nearby. Not only that, she had asked to have Friday’s off and they were agreeable to this request. The work hours during the other days are 10:00 a.m.-3:00 p.m., and the pay was significantly more than what she could have earned in a part-time retail position. This new work schedule allows her to drop her three kids off at school before work, be home in time to help them with their homework, drive them to after school activities, and make a warm dinner for them. The perfect position for her! And yes, it was a friend’s husband that hired her.
Write it Down, Tell Everyone, and Be Specific
So if you’re looking for a part or full time job now or in the near future, write your perfect position down on paper (refer to my post, “Write it Down, Make it Happen” to learn about a book that describes the power of writing your goals down). It’s a way of “putting it out to the world.” Don’t underestimate the influence of your friends, neighbors, acquaintances and social groups. Let everyone know what you’re looking for in terms of the perfect position, the skills you possess, the hours you wish to work, and the ideal compensation. It’s not enough to tell people “you need or want a new job.” You need to be specific. It’s amazing what people remember when you are specific. It often causes the person you are talking to to recall a specific job she or he knows needs to be filled.
You never know, your weekly Saturday tennis match may just result in a Monday morning interview!