As New Year’s resolutions go, ours never change: give people the respect, time, and focus they need to land a job they enjoy, that aligns with their values and goals, and that develops their talents.
As a person, we encourage you to set goals and ambitions. The sky is the limit! But by setting modest goals that you can achieve with slightly less zest, maybe doubling your salary in two or three years as opposed to months, you’ll be reminded of your progress. Which is why we recommend having a New Year’s resolution as a job seeker if finding a new job is on your list.
First, note that it’s best if your job seeking resolution is different from your personal one. Jobs are facts of life, but we don’t agree that you are your job or that they define who you are. Instead, having a resolution in your life as a job seeker can be the mental push that transforms your habits—and your ability to find success. As we've noted, setting mild or small goals slowly gets you to the big goals.
Applying this to your job search could mean writing one cover letter per day as opposed to feeling overwhelmed by writing several which could cause you to avoid writing altogether. Gradually, you develop a rhythm and one becomes two. Before you know it, you become an expert in interpreting a job listing and writing three or four paragraphs that get you into the interview chair. But how does this translate into an effective job seeking strategy in 2020?
ESTABLISH A SCHEDULE LIKE YOU WOULD FOR A JOB
When job seeking, your routine reveals much about your rate of return. This doesn’t mean that routines make or break your ability to land a job—luck can be your friend, but having a schedule helps to block off time for solely focusing on employment.
• Spend two or three hours in the morning searching for and saving jobs that align with your skills, values, and goals and two or three hours in the afternoon writing the applications.
• Job search for one hour, write an application or two for an hour and repeat.
• Spend one to two hours studying the industry, taking free online courses to learn skills, or working on a side project. Spend one to two hours job searching and another one to two hours writing the applications.
Your schedule depends on how much free time you have on your hands. But by setting a written schedule, you will motivate yourself to sit down and get to business. No pun intended.
ADD A NUMBER TO IT
We’ll always advise you not to take the scattershot approach where you send dozens of applications through Easy Apply. (Mostly because 1,500 more people are doing the same.) By tailoring your résumé or CV to the job requirements, and, including a tailored cover letter if the company requests it, your odds improve quite a few percentage points. Your recruiter can also help you with this!
If you're the rare creative who can't get enough of numbers, set a quota of applications you want to hit each day or week. The more seeds you water, the more likely a flower will bloom. Start off with a modest number - maybe two or three applications per day. Slowly that could grow to four or five, and suddenly you’ll be sending sixteen to twenty applications per week. And, if not? No worries! Just pace yourself and work towards modest goals.
CREATE LISTS AND ALERTS FOR JOB SUBMISSIONS
Create lists of jobs in need of your skills, experience, and interests. For adjacent industries or positions with similar skills, set alerts to your LinkedIn and Indeed accounts. This way you will be notified of relevant opportunities.
We highly recommend you keep your job submissions organized by creating a spreadsheet of jobs you have applied to or plan to apply to, along with links. When a recruiter reaches out to you with a job opportunity, you can then easily and accurately know if you've already applied the company. These small efforts will help streamline your job search process and make you stand out from your competition!
TAKE CARE OF THE LITTLE THINGS AND THE BIG THINGS WILL TAKE CARE OF THEMSELVES
Keeping up with modest goals leads to changes in our habits that can dramatically improve our lives. Setting a strict schedule for your job seeking and enrichment activities, having a personal quota for applications you’d like to send, setting alerts for jobs at companies or industries you love, and being organized to efficiently work with recruiters are small touches that can yield great rewards. These are our New Year’s resolutions recommendations for you as a job seeker.
We wish you a year of growth, effort, optimism, patience, and perseverance. Happy holidays and Happy New Year