You’ve been unemployed for what seems like ages, and you are feeling frustrated with your lack of progress. You know you’ve got marketable skills and would make a great addition to any team. So, why is nobody hiring you?
While there’s no magic answer or one-size-fits-all solution, there are certain things you can and should do in the interim to improve your chances of re-employment.
Stay in the know about your industry
Keep up with industry trends, changes and shifts. Review local business journals and directories such as Business in Vancouver – Book of Lists to see who’s trending as an industry leader in your sector. Identify companies in growth mode as they will likely be seeking new talent. Your research will also provide you with relevant topics for small talk when networking and will demonstrate that your knowledge is current during interviews.
Upgrade your skills
Your industry research will uncover new technologies and in-demand skills that may require you to engage in training to maintain your industry edge. This training provides an excellent response to a recruiter’s inquiry as to what you’ve been doing over the past 6 (or more) months. You can then discuss how you have been building your skills portfolio to address and prepare for changing industry needs.
Ensure you are putting your best resume foot forward
Engage JL Careers to do a Resume Critique to ensure your resume is highlighting your track record of success and key accomplishments related to the jobs you are targeting. A targeted resume can position you as a lead candidate as you are speaking directly to the needs of the hiring manager in that sector.
If you have begun consulting or contracting your services, add this to your resume to further demonstrate your expertise. And don’t forget to update your resume with any recent training.
Come up with a backup plan
Maybe your ideal job is the CEO of a technology firm but, there are limited opportunities in the local job market. Consider a secondary job objective – i.e. a VP role in a larger tech firm or CEO of a tech start up. Or, consider launching into contracting or consulting to close the gap until you land your ideal job. Being flexible might be the key to your success. If feasible, looking outside of your city might be the quick ticket to your re-employment.
Get involved with your professional association. Link back with all of your earlier networking contacts and reconnect over coffee. Be sure to tell everyone you are looking for a new opportunity – and deliver your compelling elevator pitch that clearly defines who you are and how you add value to organizations. Keep in mind you are more than at job title. Speak about your areas of expertise and the key issues or problems you resolve for organizations.
Conduct an interview audit
An interview audit can help you identify and overcome any interview challenges that may be standing in your way. After each interview, go through the questions that were asked and evaluate your responses. The goal is to practice your answers until you can effectively convey your expertise with passion and confidence. The more you do this, the better you will get.
Do something every day to keep your spirits high and your body moving
There is a strong correlation between feeling down in the dumps and lack of physical movement. Even if it’s just for 20 minutes a day, do something to keep the juices flowing. Sometimes just a short walk around the block can dramatically shift a negative attitude to one of hope and optimism.
Above all else, don’t give up. As the great Winston Churchill once said, “Success is not final, failure is not fatal: It is the courage to continue that counts.”
Author: Joanne Loberg of JL Careers Inc. is a Certified Executive Coach and Internationally Certified Career Management Professional. She has a reputation as a highly sought after Career Consultant and she has been referred to as “an absolute expert at navigating the complex territory of career advancement.” Joanne provides leadership coaching as well as career transition coaching, career planning workshops, and job search services (resumes, LinkedIn profiles, cover letters, and interview practice) for Professionals and Executives. Copyright 2017 JL Careers Inc. All rights reserved.
Wishing you much job search success!
Certified Executive Coach & Internationally Certified Career Management Professional
JL Careers Inc