Etiquette Tip of the Week: Get Out to Get In
By Callista Gould, Author and Certified Etiquette Instructor
I hear from a lot of college graduates frustrated with their job hunt. Their classmates found jobs right away, while they are churning through online application forms. They have landed a few phone, video or in-person interviews but say employers just don't "get them." It's not just new college graduates. It's older employees, cast adrift in a layoff, trying to find their way in a changed market. Stay-at-home moms looking to get back into the game. Or younger employees, looking for a new direction.
The first thing to acknowledge: the job hunt is hard. You feel lost, discouraged, unwanted. It's like being picked last for kickball… only with financial consequences. Give yourself a break. Not a vacation break, but an exhale, reality-check break.
If what you are doing is not working, you need a different strategy. Start reaching out to people. On LinkedIn, you can find alumni from your school, people who work in your intended field or with your target organizations. Ask for advice. Ask for a meeting over coffee. Ask for an informational interview. Get out and interact with others. Go to an event at a local association in your field, free lectures, a library event, volunteer, try a Toastmasters meeting. Hit the pavement and drop off a few resumes in person. Make yourself get out at least twice a week. Find temporary work through temp agencies. Will some jobs seem like they are beneath you? Yes. Do they result in a paycheck? Yes.
Your job hunt is a job. It's not meant to be easy – it's a rough road paved with rejections and rebuffs. But filling out more online applications is like never leaving your driveway.
Can you do this? Yes, you can. The first step is to get out.
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