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Tuesday, December 28, 2010

New Year, New Job: Top Ten Job Search Do's and Don'ts for 2011

The Job (The Office)Image via Wikipedia
Being engaged, prepared and
professionally dressed is a perfect
 way to began your job search for

Your personal job search did not go as expected in 2010?  A New Year will be upon us in less than five days. Now is time to leave the by-gone's of 2010 in the past and bring 2011 in with a positive light.

In the second series of the Reach Out Job Search News Blog “New Year, New Job” series, we will highlight the top 10 Do’s and Don’ts learned from our interviews with career coaches, CEO's and human resources professionals on our newly featured weekly radio show with the Blog Talk Radio network, for you to gain a new employment opportunity in 2011.

Top 10 Job Search Do's

1. Re-Do Your Resume. Center your resume on your experience rather than your age. Make a variety of resumes for different job inquiries. For instance, when applying for a Customer Service Representatives a different version of your resume might be required than applying for a Director of Marketing. Highlight your experience to fit within the job description for employment opportunity you’re applying for.

2. Introduce Yourself with a Photo. Adding a photo on a e-mail signature or social network profile can set a job seeker apart from the competition. Also, placing  your picture or logo onto a resume can assist in the introduction process and personalize you with the hiring manager in job search.

3. Engage in Social Networking, Effectively- In today’s social networking marketplace human resource, hiring managers and recruiters frequency review candidates' social network profiles on  LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter when they have open positions or during the interview process. With such, think of social networks as a pre or post interview ‘calling card’ and structure the profiles accordingly, for job search. 

4. Temporary Work =Resume Filler or Permanent Employment. Why take on a temporary opportunity during your job search? First, a temporary job adds to your resume and eliminates an employment gap. Next, temporary jobs are excellent great way to try out a job without making a long-term commitment. Also, accepting an temporary opportunity could offer the employee a leg up on the competition if the company decides to make a position permanent.

5. Plan Job Search for the Right Job, Not Any Job. Know the right employment opportunity that plays to your strengths, not weaknesses. Even after a lay-off, do not overlook Career Counseling offered by state unemployment agencies or an outplacement service which your former employer could offer.

6. Strategize: Search Were the Jobs Are. Learn about industry sectors hiring the most workers. Consider a certificate and/or degree program to have the necessary education to apply those job openings. In 2010, this included industries such as health care and internet security.

7. Gain the ‘Inside Scoop’. Thinking about jumping into a new industry? A great idea first is to talk with friends, colleagues or former colleagues in the field to ensure perceived realities match up with expectations. Also, research industries and companies to identify which ones might present the best fit for your expectations.

8. Network, Network and Network, Again. By networking in trade associations, service groups or within employment segments in line with a personalized job search, the viable contacts gained can directly or indirectly lead into a new position during the New Year.

9. Present a Professional Appearance. Updating your wardrobe, hair style and resume can go a long way to represent presentable appearance that expresses professionalism to a prudential hiring manager. Dress for Success is a non-profit organization which provides professional attire and career development services for women at no cost, with over 30 locations nationwide.

10. Use Manners Please. Send Thank You Notes. Follow up all job interviews with thank-you note. Even in the electronic age, a e-mailed or hand-written thank you delivered via postal mail, can be present a deciding factor for the hiring manager to extend an offer letter.

Top 10 Job Search Don'ts

1. Add Career Summaries. Do Add Career Highlights Instead. Start your resume with a bulleted list of career highlights, instead. Be very specific in this section, about accomplishments at prior employers such as "Increased year-over-year technology sales by 20%” or “Received customer service excellence award 2006-2009”.

2. Think About Skipping Out on an Interview. Agreeing to a job interview, then not showing up can sabotage your job search. Employers can engage in networks with hiring managers, human resource professionals and others at various companies in their personal/professional networks.

The last thing a job seeker should do is burn a professional bridge before jumping head-first, into the employment market. With such, cancel all interviews, in advance, which you cannot attend.

3. Show up for an interview unprepared. Research the company, division and job description details prior to the interview day. Ask engaging questions about the company or insert researched details into your responses to the hiring manager, during the interview. One of the best ways to gain a foot into the door of the job is to show genuine interest and knowledge into the company background, highlights and accomplishments.  

4. Believe a 'You're overqualified' statement stops the interview process. Counteract the 'you’re overqualified' statements by hiring managers by focusing your experience which fits directly into the company's needs. Maintain an up-beat attitude and show a potential employer your humility and willingness to learn.

5. Overlook a new industry. It's possible to switch industries if you have transferable skills. People with sales management experience, could move into from business consulting, training or development roles. Make highlights on your resume to detail how roles in the previous job title fit into the responsibilities of the new industry you are seeking to gain an employment opportunity within.

6. Think the Perfect Job is Just around the Corner. When you are out of work, personal financial manners continue. Waiting for the ‘Perfect Job’ can present quite a stain on both families and individual budgets. In addition, within potential employer's eyes, it's better to be employed in a less-than-ideal position than not working.

7. Answer Interview Questions that Hint Around Your Age. Don't engage questions about your age or how much longer you intend to work. First, it is against age discrimination laws. Second, the employer should know that these types of questions are illegal. Third, if your age is a factor in the hiring process, this employer might not present the ideal place to engage, within your job search.

Remember in an interview, you are also interviewing the company for a ‘right fit’. If age over ability, experience and background is the hiring manager top concern, the job is probably the ‘wrong fit’ for you.

8. Bring Close-Mind Attitudes into the Interview Room. Today’s multi-generational workforces make put-downs of age, ethicizes or other personal characteristics during a interview a sure-fire way to not gain a job.  Industry experience and glowing recommendations will not matter if you present yourself biased or intolerant.

9. Stop Your Job Hurt During the Holidays. Instead, it is perfect time to look for work. There are hiring managers, human resource personnel and even other employees still available at companies during the holidays. Also, continuing job search during the holidays presents a prime opportunity to set you apart from the competition taking a job hunt break.

10. Allow the Words ‘I Give-Up’ in your Vocabulary. When out of work, think of yourself as between jobs, not unemployed. Keep your spirits up and connect with others. The next employment opportunity can only be a resume and interview away.

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