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You want that new job, you need that new job…but you don’t have it yet. While the state of the economy and your industry are certainly factors that determine the ease or difficulty of your job search, sometimes the issue lies a little closer to home. It pays to examine those bad habits that could be hindering your job search. Here are a few things to consider:
- Procrastination: You have a vacation coming up, there’s a huge deadline at work, you see only a few ads for your type of position, you only need that one last course…all very good reasons not to start your search right now. The problem arises when you always have a reason not to start that search. Maybe your reasons are legitimate, or maybe you just aren’t ready right now. Identifying out why you haven’t started your search can actually be the first step to starting your job search – assuming that you address the issue behind the procrastination.
- What do you want to do?: It’s difficult to know how to structure your job search in terms of positions and/or companies when you aren’t sure what you actually want to do! Start with making a list: jot down what you like about your current job and what you don’t, what are your strengths and weaknesses, what interests you and what doesn’t. Review the results and compare your list with the jobs that are out there – do you have the education and experience for that work? If not, then create a plan to get them, then target those companies, not necessarily just the positions available.
- Staying in your comfort zone: The commute is nice, you like your co-workers, the pay is fine. It’s hard to look for another job when the one you have is “good enough”. There’s nothing wrong with a job like that, but if at the end of the day you are left wanting more, then you need to pull off that security blanket. Recognize why you are in your current job and if those reasons are enough to stay or if they are excuses to avoid starting your job search.
- Don’t worry, be happy!: Starting a job search can be daunting, so it pays to begin and continue with the right attitude: be positive! Your attitude will soak through everything – your cover letter and resume, your interview, your body language – and prospective employers will pick up on it. Maintaining enthusiasm throughout the entire process will be a challenge, so remember that your job search is only one aspect of your life and that you can control it.
- The same ol’ same ol’: How long has it been since you last started a job search? If it’s been a while, you should examine your strategy. Are you relying on outdated methods or excluding newer technologies? Business networking changes fast so make sure that you are opening the doors to the opportunities in the ways that are available now.
Change can be good and it’s necessary to recognize when you need to implement that change. However, fear of failure can be a powerful motivator to avoid doing the things can bring about change. The only failure is not starting, so let that thought be the starting point of your successful job search.