In these uncertain times for job search, the front page of the New York Times is covered with words we’re all getting used to, but which still make us fearful: COVID-19, Coronavirus, pandemic, outbreak, wartime, shutdowns, working from home, remote work, etc.
Very little else seems to qualify as news these days.
Although some companies are hiring, they may not be the companies or industries or types of jobs you’re targeting.
A recent Fast Company article points out some of the industries that ARE hiring now:
- Shipping and delivery companies
- Online learning companies
- Grocery stores and delivery services
- Remote meeting and communication companies
If you’re like many of us, you’re staying at home these days. Maybe you’ve put your job search on hold, whether out of an abundance of caution or because not much is happening.
And maybe you now have time on your hands. Why not put that time to good use and read up on ways to improve your job search strategy?
You may think you know how job search really works, but then again, maybe you don’t.
12 Articles to Help You Deal with Uncertain Times for Job Search
Invest some time in reading these 12 articles and following my advice. You’ll be that much ahead of the game when you get back to your job search.
Think of your job search like it’s a small business
When you’re job hunting, you’re essentially a solopreneur . . . a company of one. The more you think of your job search as a business, the faster you’ll land a job you covet and deserve.
I’ve been a solopreneur for more than 20 years. The things I do to promote and grow my business are the same kinds of things job seekers need to do to accelerate their search.
In this post, I describe 9 steps to a successful executive job search by being the “CEO of Brand You”.
Take the time to define your authentic personal brand and unique value
Defining your personal brand and unique value requires deep introspection, and takes some time. Job seekers who take the time to reflect and dig deep will have the tools to excel beyond their competitors.
To get your job search on the right track, get the worksheets you’ll need to focus on targeting, research, your career history, and your personal brand.
Don’t spend too much time on the job boards
Are you spending hours every day, posting your executive resume on job boards? If so, cut it out!
Although job boards do serve a purpose, I hesitate suggesting you use them at all. In my experience, too many executive job seekers get sucked in once there, spending way too much time responding to job postings.
They’re just not very good at helping people land good-fit jobs for several reasons, including:
- Jobs posted may not be legitimate openings.
- Job descriptions may not truly represent the job.
- Even if jobs are no longer open, they may still linger on the job board.
- You may not be able to delete your resume from their database once you land a job. This makes you forever appear as an active job-hunter and can jeopardize future jobs.
Network your way into the jobs that are never advertised
If you’re like most executives, you know that networking plays a role in landing a good-fit gig. But do you know how to network optimally?
You probably know you need to connect with the various people who can help you meet your career goals.
Even so, you’re probably investing minimal time in networking, in favor of spending the majority of your time on job boards.
Did you know that an estimated 80-90% of executive jobs – especially at the c-suite and other senior levels – never show up on job boards or anywhere else?
You may only be able to get to the best jobs by networking your way in.
Get ready to ace your job interviews
Most people would say that interviewing is stressful. One way to ease the anxiety, and perform better, is to put the time into preparing well.
In these uncertain times for job search, interviews may be few and far between.
This post will help you:
- Get ready before you step into the interview
- Prepare to make the right first impression
- Know how to answer the typical questions you will be asked
- Bring the right question with you for YOU to ask them
- Know what to do AFTER the interview.
Find and network with the right executive recruiters
Although the major focus of your job search strategy should be networking your way into the goldmine of hidden jobs, you’ll still need to know how to work with executive recruiters.
You need to get the attention of recruiters who specialize in your niche. You want them to keep you top-of-mind when a good-fit opportunity for you comes their way.
Write an executive resume that gets you more interviews
When was the last time you used your executive resume?
When was the last time you even thought about it or looked at it?
If you’re like many of the c-suite and senior-level executives I work with, you’ve either never needed an executive resume to get noticed and land a job . . . or it’s been many years since you’ve needed one . . . or you’re not happy with your resume.
You may be unaware of how much executive resumes have changed in just the past few years.
Why you need a biography, along with your resume
I’m sure you’ve read a typical bio that walks you through the person’s career progression and provides hard facts. Aside from touching briefly on their families and perhaps hobbies, they lack vibrancy. They give you little feel for what kind of person you’re reading about and what drives them.
A brand biography is a storytelling tool that breathes life into an otherwise flat rehash of your resume. For job search and career management, a bio affords the opportunity to reinforce your brand with storytelling in a way that a resume doesn’t allow.
Get busy with LinkedIn
LinkedIn plays such a critical role in helping executives position themselves to land the jobs they covet and deserve.
In this post, I’ve compiled 7 articles that will help you get a handle on using LinkedIn to:
- Build your personal brand
- Expand your online presence
- Become more “find-able” by recruiters and others
- Demonstrate your subject matter expertise and thought leadership
- Grow your network
- Understand LinkedIn best practices
Video is especially important in uncertain times for job search
Video has proven to be one of the most powerful tools to build personal branding and online visibility for job search and overall career management. But very few job seekers use video at all. Those who DO use video, are better able to differentiate the unique value they offer
These facts should convince you to get on board with video:
- Videos posted online rank higher in search engines (Google, LinkedIn, and others) than plain content alone. So videos do a better job of boosting your online visibility.
- Videos are 10 times more likely to be shared than other content.
- Video does a better job of conveying personality, promoting your personal brand and generating chemistry than plain content.
- Video does a better job of vividly showcasing your subject matter expertise than flat content.
Be mindful of your online reputation
Want to boost your chances of being found by executive recruiters, hiring managers, employers and others sourcing top talent?
Of course you do.
Whether you’re actively job seeking or think you may be in the future, you need a strong online presence. Even if you feel secure in your job, you need to be visible online. That’s just the way it is today.
In other words, you need a solid online reputation management strategy.
Ways you can deal with and overcome age discrimination
If you’re over 50 and job-hunting, and it’s been several years since you’ve been in a job search, you may be in for a rude awakening.
All of a sudden, job interviews may be much harder to land.
When you do get interviews, you may sense a resistant attitude from the interviewers that you never experienced before.
It may be clear, and terribly discomforting . . . you’re facing age discrimination.