Navigating the job search… Common words might come to mind – stressful, overwhelming, confusing? You aren’t alone if you have used the phrase “looking for a job is like a full-time job right now” We hope this article lends itself as an aide for this process – or at least be able to take away a tip or two.
Defining your appetite for making a move is a good first step. Actively prospecting for a new job is usually a little more time consuming so make sure that you are prepared to give it ample time required. This might look like setting aside designated hours during the day you apply for jobs, or schedule calls with Recruiters/HR. Scheduling interviews should take precedence over extracurricular activities if you are actively looking to land that next gig.
It never hurts to keep an ear to the ground! Doesn’t mean that you are unhappy with your current job or that it’s not a good spot to be in. But if there’s something out there that could be a great spot, don’t let that pass by without at least entertaining a conversation. You are still allowed to say No, I’m not interested.
If that opportunity catches your attention and aligns with where you would like to be, commit to seeing through the interview process. This will mean that you have to make time for the interview process – a Zoom at home during your lunch hour or after work – or an in-person interview squeezed in your schedule. If you are passively searching and the prospective opportunity EXCITES you – see it through! You never know what great opportunity is awaiting on the other end of that phone call.
Entertaining Options – when to and how many?
I frequently tell candidates “It’s good to cast a wide net”. Entertaining conversations for potential opportunities is not a bad thing. Before you start your search ask yourself – what are my Top Criteria in order to make a move? Usually there will be the 2-3 “non-negotiables” and then a few secondary “nice-to-haves”. As you entertain options, make sure you your personal requirements defined and are transparent with what is important to you. Every person’s search will be different. But clearly defining and being transparent about your preferences is going to help you determine if this opportunity aligns with YOUR GOALS. If it checks 6 to 7 out of the 10 boxes on your list, sure, see where it goes! If it only checks 1 or 2, it’s okay to say “no, I don’t think this is a good fit for me at this time because XYZ is most important to me”.
Take the funnel approach if you will – start reading/reviewing/listening to a wide variety of opportunities. As the search moves forward to the next step or an interview or two –NARROW IT DOWN TO focus on types of opportunities that closely align with your criteria.
KEEP TRACK – especially for the active job hunters out there! Making a Spreadsheet (or if you are like me and avoid Excel at all costs), make a running list that compiles all the names of the Companies you have applied to. Take it one step further and list out the Job Title and Date you applied or date you interviewed. Keeping organized is going to help you feel more in control of THE process.
Additionally, for candidates that start to have opportunities develop into multiple interviews – I encourage candidates to “debrief” after the interview. On your list, detail out what you liked and didn’t like about the interview. This will help in referencing back to your thoughts and feelings about each Company/Opportunity. That way, if decision time comes and you have to give an answer for an offer (especially if on the fence), you can reflect on how the interview process went overall.
Navigating the job search can be daunting.. But it can be so worth it. It can put you in the position to better your circumstances or to get out of a rut. Building connections with Recruiters who genuinely want to understand what is important to you and your job search is important. Here at SHR that is very important. Whether actively looking or passively looking, we welcome the conversation to help YOU envision that next step whether it’s now or in the future.