Indeed, September is a great month for new beginnings. The summer fun draws to a close and familiar routines once again take over.
New Beginning My new beginning started a few weeks ago when I was laid off and I began my search for a new career. A seemingly daunting task – what do I want to do next? Even after four years in the “real world” the possibilities seem endless. My attitude and energy, overall, have been very positive but how do I keep this momentum going?
Job Websites Since graduating from college the career search has dramatically changed but at the same time it has changed very little. A little contradictory, I know, but let me explain. When I got out of school Monster.com and CareerBuilder were the major job site players. Today there are tens of hundreds of job sites out there. From Craigslist to Indeed.com and Juju to Idealist.org there are job sites for every industry in every corner of the country. These sites are great as a starting point to get some ideas about industries, positions and companies but actually finding and landing a job is next to impossible. You might as well spend your time trying to split atoms in your garage.
Network The network. Everyone talks about the “network” when it comes to the career search. My father always talked about building and working the network in order to find the next opportunity. Unlike the famous job sites, and for that matter the Internet, the network has been around for ages. It’s the people you know. It’s the people who know the people you know. It’s your next-door neighbor, your parents’ lawyer friend, the guy who graduated three years ahead of you. Your network is your key to finding your next (or first) career opportunity.
With the overwhelming presence of the online job search and trying to tap into my “network” how do I keep myself organized and focused with so much going on? It’s really a job into itself.
Also, once I’ve tapped into my network how do I turn friendly conversations into interviews and job offers?