Make Your Voice Heard
How to Be Your Own Hype Person While Job Hunting
Stay motivated -- even during the holiday season -- with the strongest strategies from three top career coaches
Back in the day, job hunting in the corporate sector during the holiday season could have been considered a dead zone. Fat cat execs were too busy schmoozing clients and typing up year-end reports to think about bringing on new talent. But now, everything is upside down, so it could be the PERFECT time to keep putting yourself out there.
In this wacky economy where the stock market surges even when job loss reports are bad, even the most optimistic people may struggle to grapple with what the heck is going on in their industry, let alone find the energy to stay upbeat and productive while searching. Maybe a silver lining for COVID times is not having family gatherings where well-meaning relatives ask you on repeat, “How’s the job search going?” Even if their interest in your professional life appears on your Zooms or FaceTimes, don’t let it suck out your energy. Remember, it’s entirely possible they’re lumping their anxieties onto you. Shield yourself and know that the right opportunity WILL come along.
To help you focus and make progress on your job search, we mustered up three career czars and picked their brains for really useful tips.
Let’s start by checking in with Mary Tess Rooney, a certified business coach in St. Augustine, FL, with over two decades in executive communications supporting sales training and billion-dollar businesses. Check out her five best suggestions:
- Embrace wonderful you.
There is so much more to you than your resume and cover letter. Even though technology and search term engines in human resource portals make it harder to get to a gatekeeper, be vigilant about honoring and understanding your value.
- Define your tangibles.
Ok, so you realize your value. But can you back it up with actual examples and results that validate that you’re exceptional at your job? If not, work on that.
- Look at your resume with fresh eyes.
What is on there that you are not proud of or doesn’t get you excited? Things you are capable of, but make you cringe, and you don’t want to do more of. If you don’t have to do them again, well, great.
- Reframe it.
If you were let go from a job, try to look at it as an expansion experience. There are so many factors right now that have nothing to do with you, and it’s nothing to be ashamed of. If you can, own it as something to make you more empathetic. It’s also an opportunity to give yourself permission to really think about what you want out of life, and what you want it to look like when you are working again.
- Hire yourself as your publicist.
Create a PR effort to emphasize your value and get that out there. Relationship-building through contacts and communications helps you stay motivated. Your friends and family want to help you.
Chiming in next is business and sales coach Angela Bruckner of Constant Pursuit, in Naples, FL. Her top five tips:
- Define your Why.
Motivation is a choice that starts with a desire to achieve something. A good question to ask yourself is “What is my motive for landing a new job?” Getting clarity about your motive unveils your Why. Your Why puts emotion and a timeline in the process.
- Be an expert on the marketplace you want to be in.
In order to win in the job-hunting arena, you have to stay on top of uncovering unmet needs in the business.
- Look at your plan for landing your new job.
Are you 100 percent confident in it? Are you confident that your skill sets mean you can do what you say you want to do? If not, reach out to a resource to get you there. Read books, take online classes, do what it takes to boost those skills.
- Practice honesty.
Intentionally identify what IS working in the job search process, instead of what isn’t. For example, perhaps you have great references or your resume and cover letter are opening doors to phone interviews. Tying your confidence to the process of creating an outcome, and not to the outcome itself, allows you to stay motivated amidst closed doors and no’s. It also helps you to identify the areas you might need to tweak and improve to get more yeses.
- Celebrate the small victories.
You got a phone interview. Great, go for a walk with your neighborhood bestie. You practiced your Zoom interview skills with a trusted former coworker. Awesome. Now watch one of those Netflix shows everyone else is bingeing. Positivity breeds motivation.
And last but not least is certified life coach Sharon Hardy from Ponte Vedra Beach, FL, who helps her clients find solutions, instead of spoon-feeding them answers. Her five strongest strategies are:
- Blast your stress.
Find sustainable and healthy ways to relieve stress, which in turn will improve confidence and let you stay positive. Figure it out: volunteering, networking, reading and writing blog posts, exercising, and finding a good network group. Work on things other than always sitting and looking for jobs.
- See yourself.
Try visualization with someone who is in the job or who is awesome and does it so well. Be that person. Feel their success and confidence. Live in it for a minute. Then, let it be you instead of that person. Use this vision when you get down.
- Zap negativity.
You will have times when motivation is lacking. That’s real. What will bring you back to a better mind space is going for a walk, seeing the nice post-it note you wrote yourself on your computer, or snapping a rubber band around your wrist to snap out the negative and remember why you are good. Anything that is realistic and tells you, ‘I got this.’
- Get a buddy.
Finding an accountability partner to talk to and write down your plans will make them real and realistic to follow. This person can be a peer, life partner, spouse, neighbor, or someone else who is on the job hunt. If you say it out loud, it will propel you toward getting things done.
- Post about it.
Put it out on LinkedIn that you are looking — so long as it won’t cost you your current job. There are so many people doing the same. Have a couple of people you trust eyeball a draft of your post, to make sure you are hitting the right notes — positive and professional. It’s okay to ask for help on social media because there is so much shifting and moving in the work world, there will be spaces available.