Looking for your next role is a full time job in itself. When you’re looking for work you’re a new product launching onto the market, and you need to develop, package and market your product full time.
You do need breaks away from the computer, human interaction, fresh air and exercise, too.
Getting up – set your alarm clock at the same time, shower, breakfast, dress for business. Go for a walk – it feels like going to work and you can work just as easily in a cafe with your laptop as you can alone at home. Just beware the lure of window shopping and whiling away the hours in cafes with newspapers.
Online recruitment sites – there are a vast number of them, all free to use. Put your CV up on every one you can find, together with your template cover letter and register for daily email alerts.
Emails – have separate social and business addresses and leave the social emails till the evening.
Set particular times of day to review emails rather than jump at every one that pings in.
Read your job alerts and apply for them – if you’ve set them up you’ll get fresh ones relevant to you emailed every day.
Lunch break – get away from the screen and have a walk.
Networking – Keep your professional memberships up [CIPD, Chamber of Commerce, etc] for contacts, networking events, knowledge updates and image. Go through the trade publications and websites for any suitable vacancies in your field.
Networking – email, phone and meet your contacts – former employers, colleagues and clients – for coffee and a catchup. They may have news.
Networking – go to business networking events in the area. There are many of them, sometimes in a cafe for morning coffee or a bar for an early evening drink. Others are more formal dinner and breakfast events.
Social networking – it matters in business today. Your Facebook account that people can ‘friend’ is not the only one out there – set up a Facebook Page for your professional news.
Ensure your Linked In profile is up to date and in detail as it allows you to give so much more information than your two page CV, plus you can attract recommendations and endorsements for your work, join and take part in group discussions and see targeted vacancies that may not be being advertised on recruitment boards.
Start Tweeting – talk about your field, give advice and tips, re-tweet people you follow who may then notice you and follow back. Being able to voice opinion and advice in 140 characters is a useful skill.
And of course never write or post anything that could affect your image and reputation. This is your advertising campaign.
Speculative approaches – emails, letters, calls and in-person visits to businesses that may be recruiting now or soon can work. You may not get a reply but they may keep your details and contact you later.
Evenings … keeping grimly on late into the night will only depress and tire you out. So have an end to your day’s work, meet and contact friends, watch comedy, do something creative with your evenings.
Keep up the habits of being in work; the habits of routine, time management and self discipline, as they’re easier to maintain than regain.
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