Your Job Search is NOT in “Holiday Hold Mode”! By Becky Terry, Job Seekers Network, Nov. 2012

November 21, 2012

in Job Search

While SOME organizations MAY slow down their hiring in the weeks between Thanksgiving and New Years, not all will. Here are some practical and proactive things you can do so that you don’t have to face jump starting your search again come January 2nd.

  1. Adopt an Attitude of Thankfulness. In a sermon I heard the other day, Daniel Henderson shared how thankfulness changes us, not our situation. Can you imagine the difference in how you communicate to potential employers when you have a heart of gratitude instead of a heart of bitterness? As much as we try to control it, negativity oozes out in all our interactions. We’re not saying your situation is easy, and we acknowledge that emotional ups and downs do come with unemployment, but finding positive ways to deal with your lows is important. Find someone to share them with and pray with you, asking God to give you a heart of gratitude. And while you’re at it, praise God for you- you have unique gifting, strengths, personality, passions and experiences. Embrace your unique design and look for places that will allow you to shine.
  2. Keep Working Your Plan. I heard about three job offers for our job seekers in the past 24 hours. Some companies will continue to hire during this time, particularly if they have a project they want to hit hard first thing in January. Given that some job seekers will go into “Holiday Hold Mode,” the applicant pool may actually be lighter. And your time to get momentum going again after New Years will be almost non-existent.
  3. Change Your Gift Giving Perspective. As Christians we know the focus on Christmas should be Jesus, particularly as we reflect on the gift of Jesus as the best gift we ever will receive. For giving to others, it may be really hard, but this may be the year for you to significantly cut back. Be creative. I have on a display shelf a beautifully wrapped gift box which has a poem on it explaining that it’s full of love from the giver and can never be unwrapped, just held close to the heart. I got it one year from a dear friend whose family had hit a tough period. I love that gift and have had it for over 10 years. Remember gifts are not always things, don’t forget what a gift time and serving others can be, so be sure to…
  4. Serve Others. We regularly encourage job seekers to volunteer somewhere. There’s nothing like helping someone else and moving the focus off yourself to a greater good to give you new perspective. While you’re serving don’t be afraid to connect with those working alongside you. You never know whom you’ll meet who might have a great connection for you. There are also some great stories of people turning their volunteer work into paid positions. We’d love to have you join us at our Job Seekers Network Help=Hope serving event on Tuesday, December 18th where we’ll help distribute food to families through the Reveal Ministries.
  5. Make New Friends And Keep The Old. This is a season of parties, get-togethers and special events. Don’t be afraid to let your contacts and the new people you meet know you are looking for a new opportunity. Have your elevator pitch ready to share, but do it with finesse where people don’t feel that’s all you care about or that you are only there to “work the party.” Just like we talk about in general networking tips, contacts need to know you are sincerely interested in them and it’s not just about getting their card. Talk about things important to them and not just about business, the economy or your job search. But do be sure to follow up on any leads you get.
  6. Set Goals Over Resolutions. Most people I know abandon New Year’s resolutions in the first week or so; however, goal setting should be a way of life. The SMART acronym is very helpful in setting realistic goals. Are your goals Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant and Time-Bound? You are more likely to achieve them if you include these parameters.  Look at the many different facets of your life and see where you could spend some energy in 2013.  Need to spend some time assessing your career direction? Plan to attend Design & Focus starting in mid January. Ready to have some accountability and network more effectively in 2013? Join the next session of TNT (Targeted Networking Team). (Both of these programs are offered through Job Seekers Network.) Be sure to include spiritual, personal and relational goals, too.

“Holiday Hold Mode” can really only have negative consequences. Doing all or any of the above suggestions can help you approach the New Year with a healthier attitude, and you will be in a much better position to start Jan 2nd in full job search mode.

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