This week, we’re going over part two of our series on how finding the right job for you. Last article, we went over the ways you can make your resume stand out from the crowd. Now, it’s time to go over our tips for identifying the right job listing.
By now in your job search, you’ve probably spent a considerable amount of time searching through the multitude of job posting websites on the Internet. Whether you’re just starting out in the professional world or if you have lots of experience under your belt, it can be a daunting process figuring out which type of job title is right for you.
Here are 4 things you can do to make this process much easier.
#1: Create an exhaustive list of your skills
First and foremost, you need to create a list of all of the things you know you’re good at. This doesn’t necessarily have to be limited to skills you’ve acquired while working, by the way. Do you like to use Photoshop? Then say you’re capable of graphic design. Are you a good writer? Talk up your communication skills!
Try to come up with at least a dozen skills you’re confident in. From there, you can compare your skills to the requirements list in the job posting. The more in-line with your skills the posting is, the more likely you are to succeed in it.
#2: List the things you enjoy doing or would like to do
In addition to writing down everything you know you’re good at, you should also create a list of what you want to do. On this wish list, you should consider all of the things you want in an ideal job. What kind of working environment do you want to be in? What type of people would you like to work with? What are some of the goals you want to accomplish? From there, incorporate your main set of values into the mix. Are there any types of services or products that are really important to you?
Similar to #1, try to make a list of around a dozen items. If you can find a listing that satisfies at least half of your criteria, you just might be a good fit for it!
#3: Do your research and network
Ok, you have a solid list of things you’re good at and what you’d like to do; now it’s time to get out there and actually research. You shouldn’t rely purely on information you get from second-hand sources (like job posting websites), go out there and talk to people who are actually in those roles.
When you network, make sure you ask the right questions—i.e., those that will help you understand the “ingredients” of the job. Ask things like, “I’d like a job that involves these skills, this type of knowledge and this style of workflow.” Furthermore, try to limit your networking to people who can honestly say they love what they’re doing and can tell you exactly what it feels like from the inside. When you do this, you’re giving the other person the opportunity to make some quality suggestions based on their impression of you.
#4: Consult with a career advisor or a headhunter
Perhaps the most important thing you can do is to work with some type of organization that will make the process of finding a job easier. When you work with an advisor/headhunter, they will be able to analyze you from an objective standpoint. Moreover, a good career advisor will likely have a significant number of connections in the industry you’re interested in and will be able to market your resume to companies they feel you would best fit in with.
If you decide to go this route, try to limit yourself to no more than 2-3 different job search agencies. You don’t want your resume to be sent to the same company multiple times! Also, figure out if they work on a commission of your salary. If that happens, your consultant may be more interested in simply finding you a job, not the right job.