2013
Job Search

9 Steps You Can Take Today To Find A New Job in 2013

2013_2

It’s a brand new year, a time where many people attack their New Year’s resolutions with excitement and resolve. If you were one of the many people whose resolution involves finding a new job or making  career change, you may be wondering where to start. Here are nine steps you can take today to position yourself well to find your next gig. 

    1. Update your resume: How long has it been since you updated your resume? Chances are it could benefit from at least a few tweaks. Whether you’re actively looking for a job or not, it’s a good idea to keep you resume current as you never know when an opportunity may come along. Here are some resources that can help: How To Spruce Up A Boring Resume (via Mashable), Tips for Writing a Resume in Online World (via WSJ)
    2. Update your LinkedIn profile: Most recruiters are actively using LinkedIn to find candidates. Will they find you? If so, what will they find? Do you have a (somewhat professional) photo? Do you have a compelling headline that will catch their attention? Is your profile 100% complete? LinkedIn is one of the top sourcing platforms for Recruiters, so how you present yourself here is important. You can find some great tips on how to create a compelling profile from LinkedIn expert Craig Fisher here
    3. Create a LinkedIn job search agent: While you’re at it, use the advanced job search feature in LinkedIn to search for compelling jobs. When you’re on the results page, save those results and create an agent. You can configure the agent to send you daily or weekly listings of job opportunities directly to your inbox.
    4. Create an Indeed.com search agent: Indeed.com is another great resource many job seekers may not be aware of. They are the #1 job site worldwide, with over 80 million unique visitors and 1.5 billion job searches per month. Indeed aggregates job listings from job boards, career sites, and other area of the web and presents them in a clean searchable format. You can also create job search agents like the above LinkedIn example. Here are some additional job search tips from Indeed.
    5. Build a personal website: For many roles a digital and online presence can be an important part of your job search (more on that in the next bullet). Whether you build and actively maintain a blog, or use free tools like About.me (you can see my page as an example here) or Flavors.me to create online portfolios – it gives you an opportunity to make yourself ‘findable’ online and showcase your work and expertise. 
    6. Expand your digital footprint: What’s a digital footprint? Google yourself, what do you find? If the answer is nothing, you have little to no digital footprint. Being active in social media or other online channels can help you build and expand your digital footprint, and help position you as knowledgeable in your given field. Blogging is a great tool for this, but it’s not a necessity. Twitter, LinkedIn, Quora, Google+, Facebook, topical online forums, user groups, etc are all great places to share your knowledge and contribute to your community – and will help to build your digital footprint.
    7. Expand your network: Networking is one of the single most important things you can do for a successful job search. Building and nurturing your network takes time, but pays dividends in the long run. 
    8. Get strategic: If you want to conduct an active job search, be strategic. Build a list of companies you might want to work for and do the following: bookmark the career sites in a centralized spreadsheet so you can check them on a regular basis, check your network on LinkedIn to see who you know at each company, work to expand your network in these organizations. 
    9. Get a personal board of directors: The saying ‘it takes a village’ definitely applies to your career. Having mentor/s is great, but not everyone has that opportunity. Creating a personal board of directors involves building a group of advisors you can reach out to for career advice throughout your career. Friends, former bosses or colleagues, people in your field you look up to and respect – all are potential advisors that can help your career. The key is finding people who will be honest with you, and help you see your career ‘blind spots’ and growth areas. 

 

This list is far from comprehensive, so share your tips for 2013 in the comments section below. Good luck to you in 2013!

11 thoughts on “9 Steps You Can Take Today To Find A New Job in 2013

  1. Lars, I’m going to expand on #8 (which I think should be #1 but…meh) – by strongly suggesting that seekers prepare a “Hit List” of companies to target (the same way recruiters should prepare a “Hit List” of specific people with whom they want to develop relationships with as a means to recruit them to the company).

    Let’s use NPR as the example and Lars as the target hiring manager; let’s pretend I want to be a recruiter working for you (stop laughing). I’ll create a dossier on Lars and NPR which would include (no special order):

    • His most interesting Tweets (and why I thought it was interesting) – of course, Lars’ tweets will appear in a column entitled “Target Boss” on my social media dashboard client
    • His most interesting blog posts (and why I thought it was interesting) – of course I’ll follow his blog (and also note which blogs Lars comments on)
    • His speaking engagements from past/upcoming year (noting the conference and audience) – of course I’ll also take note of the panels he’s on (Friends of Lars can offer great insight into Lars-the-Man and Lars-the-Boss)
    • From LinkedIn, I’ll identify people Lars used to work with
    • Articles in which he’s been quoted (and why I thought it was interesting)
    • NPR funding news (current funding partners and projected future funding parameters) – need to know if there’s going to be money for “DNA enrichment”
    • New executive hires at NPR and where they came from – need to have a sense of what cultural elements the new folks bring to NPR

    These would be my cyberstalking, uh, research elements. My goal is to get to know Lars the Recruiting Leader for NPR and identify both “gaps” in the recruiting strategy and its tactical deployment and “augmentation opportunities” based upon future workloads.

    Huh?

    Places where I can offer specific expertise that Lars might need and specific expertise that might be similar to what Lars already does but in areas that he might want to offload so he can focus on new initiatives.

    Strategy is far more than writing goals on a piece of paper…

    • Steve – Thanks for your feedback. I didn’t really have an order in mind for the list, but agree a strategic approach would be #1 if I did. You did a great job of breaking down how you’d stalk/research a hiring manager in your comment, so it’s a great add to this post I hope job seekers take note of. Thanks!

  2. Hi Lars –

    Great Advice. Thanks for sharing!

    I work with college students and alumni daily on their resumes and CVs in virtually every field – STEM, Allied Health, Business, The Arts, Social Sciences…you name it. It amazes me how little thought most give to the idea of “targeting” their career search documents to the specific opportunity.

    We all can have a lengthy “grocery list” of information we COULD add to our job search documents but is that what the reader wants to see? No. Not in my estimation.

    Employers want to read about how you can respond to their needs. In the day and age when employers actually posted most of their job openings, figuring this out what not so tough. You could read the job specifications and understand quickly what they wanted, needed and expected then write (and order I might add) your documents in response those descriptions.

    Today, so many jobs are in the “hidden market”. Jeff’s suggestion about #8 fits perfectly here. (Thanks Jeff for sharing such good details. I plan to share them with my students!) Candidates need to understand what the employer’s needs are. What problems do they want to solve? To do that requires more investigation on the part of candidates.

    Thus, THE IMPORTANCE OF NETWORKING!!! (This is another entire topic upon which I could write a whole lecture, but I won’t. I just wish I had a dime for every time I’ve made this statement. I could retire!) You don’t learn information about the wants and needs within your industry over night. This requires on-going research; regardless of whether or not you are currently job-hunting. all of us need to keep current in our field. Just this morning, I received an email from an alum who wanted me to know he had landed a new position that was a “good fit” for him. It took him two years.

    • Hi Nancy – Thanks for your feedback! I couldn’t agree more about the importance of networking. In this connected world your network is as valuable, if not more valuable, than your resume.

  3. An impressive share! I’ve just forwarded this onto a co-worker who has been doing a little homework on this. And he actually bought me breakfast due to the fact that I stumbled upon it for him… lol. So allow me to reword this…. Thank YOU for the meal!! But yeah, thanks for spending the time to talk about this issue here on your internet site.

  4. I blog often and I seriously appreciate your content. This great article has really peaked my interest. I am going to book mark your website and keep checking for new information about once per week. I subscribed to your RSS feed as well.

  5. Pingback: How To Write The Perfect Resume « Amplify Talent

  6. Pingback: Advice for potential job seekers, i.e. everyone: Keep up with changing media | Bleacher Report – The Writers Blog

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