Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Seven Job Searching Tips

These tips are not listed in any ranked order. I’m not saying that the first tip is any better than any of the others. It’s simply a case of something had to be first. With that said let’s dive right into these ideas intended to help you with your job search.

Staffing Agencies
There are a great many reasons to get connected with a staffing agency. I’m going to list four of the most common reasons.

1.    It’s a great place to get experience
2.    It allows you the opportunity to see if you like working at an organization
3.    Employers prefer to hire people who are already working, even if the job is a temporary or part time position.
4.    It helps you expand your network.

There is so much free education available on the internet that there is no reason to not learn the things you’ve always wanted to learn. For those few of you who have nothing you want to learn, there are always the things you need to learn for your career or perhaps there are some gaps in your everyday life skills. Instruction to help with that can also be found online.

Below is the path to follow to find a variety of FREE online training.

Below is just a small taste of what’s out there.

On the left side of the home page is a gray box containing links. The first link is Employ Florida Marketplace. Click on that link and log in to Employ Florida.

Under Services for Individuals, click on the third link down. It’s titled Education and Training. Move the mouse across to the menu and down to the link for Online Learning Resources.

Scroll through this page and explore the different opportunities available.

When you’re exploring the open courseware of the colleges and universities, keep in mind that even though you aren’t going to get college credit for any of the courses offered, you may be able to use the knowledge you gain to test out of some classes at your local college. Paying for a CLEP test is much less expensive than paying for a class and it will take less time to complete.

If you want to explore what CLEP Exams are available you can go to and start learning what CLEPs are available. Or visit the school you’re thinking of attending and ask them about how you can CLEP out of some classes.

Networking Organizations
Seventy to eighty percent of jobs are found through networking. While networking does include social media, it’s not exclusive to social media. We are still a society where face-to-face, real time, in person networking is important.

There are a great many organizations designed specifically for networking. Do your research and find one that is suited to your needs. Of course, that means that the first thing you need to figure out is what you are looking for in such an organization.

Are you job searching? If so, what type of employment are you seeking? Or are you planning on starting your own business? What kind of business? The answers to those and other questions will determine the organization best suited for you.

Some networking groups can be found by exploring

While LinkedIn is a form of social media, its purpose is to serve as a networking resource for professionals. It can be used for business-to-business networking, business-to-customer networking and many people use it for job searching. While the majority of its users have college degrees this resource has tools to offer almost any job seeker. You can find out what’s going on at that company you’ve always wanted to work for and maybe even connect with someone working there. Those are the kind of connections that lead to jobs.

Community Organizations (volunteer)
Volunteering is a good way to expand your network. You meet people that, if you’re unemployed, you’re not likely to have the chance to meet elsewhere. These are the people with job leads.

Remember, no one wants to hire a stranger. People want to hire people they know, like and trust. As a volunteer you’ll meet other volunteers, some of them will be fairly high up the corporate ladder. These are individuals that not only hear about jobs that other companies have, they are also in a position to recommend candidates for jobs within their own organizations.

Volunteering also helps you keep your workplace skills sharp and who knows you might even learn some new skills that will help with your next position.

Build Your Network
Some people don’t think they need an active network until they’re out of work and start job hunting. That is not the time when you want to have to build your network from the ground up. If you are currently employed, now is the time to grow your network and not let it die. If you are unemployed and you don’t already have a network you’re behind schedule, get busy building your network. Once you find that next job make sure to keep your network active. Networking will help you move into that next position and then it’s your turn to help others in your network. It may be that no one in your network needs to find a job at the moment but we all know how quickly that can change. Stay in touch with the members of your network. It can be something as simple as knowing that one your network members is an avid bird watcher and you come across an article on a rare bird that was recently spotted. Send them a short note and include the link to the article.

Find a Mentor
Personally, I have many mentors, some I see in person; others aren’t even aware of my existence. Here’s a short list of some people who have mentored me without even knowing me. Here is a short list of some of my mentors.

Randy Gage
Ali Brown
Wayne Dyer
Stephen Covey
Marcia Bench
Donald Trump

While a precise definition of Mentor is elusive, in our society it has come to mean an adviser who imparts wisdom to and shares knowledge with others. It’s not generally a one-time event. With a Mentor you build an ongoing relationship.

Find people whom you admire, people who are successful and read about them. Learn how they think, find out what it is they do that’s different from what most people do and then emulate them.

It’s also helpful to have someone that you can meet with in person to talk over your plans and iron out challenges you’re facing. It may be that instead of a single individual you join a Mastermind Group.

If you can’t find a Mastermind Group to join in your area perhaps you should think about starting one.

As a short review here are the seven elements I’ve gone over here.

1.    Staffing Agencies
2.    Training/Education
3.    Networking Organizations
4.    LinkedIn
5.    Community Organizations (volunteer)
6.    Build Your Network
7.    Find a Mentor