12 Quick Tips for Successful Job Hunting

Below are some proven “tips” for making your job search efficient and effective. These strategies will help you cut your job search time by half or more, allowing you to attain your new job as quickly as possible!

1. Spend at least 30 hours weekly on your job search process (10 hours if you work full-time).

If you are between jobs, consider your job search as your full-time job. Plan and structure your days as though someone is paying you to conduct a successful job search.

2. Use as many job search methods as possible.

Emphasize the job search strategies to help you find jobs in the “hidden” job market. (Review the differences between the “advertised” vs. “hidden” job markets.)

3. Allow as many people as possible to help you.

The more people who know the specific job type you seek, the greater your chances of finding suitable employment quickly. Intentionally use your Personal Contact Cover Letter.

4. Take the initiative to talk with employers directly.

Eighty-five percent of employers never advertise their open positions; instead, they fill positions with people they already know, find out about the job openings through word of mouth, or take the initiative to contact the hiring manager directly. Intentionally use your Direct Employer Contact Cover Letter.

5. Be “gently persistent” when contacting potential employers.

More than any other trait, persistence is the key to your job search success. Being gently persistent means that you may need to become more assertive than you have been. It also means you will be willing to hear many “no’s” from employers. It also means that when you hear a “no,” you will be willing to ask again at a later time (and possibly hear a “yes”).

6. Apply to small businesses as well as large ones.

Two-thirds of all new jobs are created in companies with twenty or fewer employees. While large companies are still laying off employees, small companies are the ones that are growing and hiring new employees—people like you.

7. Send brief thank-you notes each night to those who have helped you in your job search that day.

Notes can say: “Thank you for the information (or job lead) you provided me. Should you think of anything else that might be helpful for my job search, please feel free to contact me at (phone number and email address). Sincerely, ________”

8. Take the time to know yourself well.

One study found that a significant reason for extended unemployment is that 80% of job applicants can’t prove their target’s top ten skills. You need to know which of your marketable skills (transferable, personal, and content), values, and personality traits will help you to do the type of work you are pursuing.

9. Describe yourself in terms of skills.

Describe yourself in terms of the skills you have rather than the jobs you have done. For example, someone is not only a car mechanic but also a person who is good with tools and diagnosing problems.

10. Stay well-groomed and appropriately dressed.

Maintain a polished appearance and dress in professional attire to maintain a positive attitude and make a good impression on potential employers.

11. Stay organized.

Develop a written weekly action plan and keep a careful record of your employer contacts.

12. Develop a robust support system.

Job search work can be stressful and challenging. When you have more “challenges” in your life, you also need increased support. Take the initiative to create the support system that will work best for you!