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Job Search Tips

Job hunting after a job loss can be tough. Maybe you loved your old job. Maybe you hated it. Either way, being laid off is a shock.

If you plan a careful job search, you have a better chance of landing a great next job. Follow these tips to make your job search a success.

Be positive: Most of all, don’t feel ashamed or guilty. If you’ve lost your job, you’re not alone. Read these tips for helping you Deal with Stress after a job loss.

Make a plan: A successful job search requires planning and time. When you’ve been laid off, your first need is often to earn money.  Find out about any Unemployment Benefits you may qualify for, and learn about More Benefits and Assistance. You may also think about temporary work as you keep searching for a long-term position.

Know your options: When you’re laid off from a job, you have experience in a particular occupation. You also have experience in a particular industry. As you look for a new job, you have several options. You can get advice about the best option for you at your local American Job Center. Laid-off job searchers have three basic options when looking for jobs:

Same occupation, same industry: If this is your goal, you can begin your job search by following the rest of the tips below.

New occupation and industry, similar skills:  You might decide to try a different type of job that requires similar skills as your former job. Explore this option at Change Careers .

New occupation and industry, new skills: Maybe the time is right to move to a whole new field and learn new skills. Explore this option at Change Careers or Get More Training . You might also want to visit my Skills my Future to find new career options to explore.

Network, network, network: Talking to everyone you know is key. Read about how  Networking  can help you find and land a job.

Polish your resume: When you apply for a job, your resume is often the only information an employer has about you. Make sure your resume shows why you are right for the job.

Hunt deep for job leads: Even during a recession, businesses are hiring. But you need to hunt for openings in many different ways. You should use job banks, job fairs, American Job Centers, and your personal network.

Be specific: We help you   by naming some targeted job titles and a short list of companies that exemplify your dream job. Other specific requests include asking others to review your resume or asking for a letter of recommendation. Do not, however, ask for information you can get on your own with a few seconds of Internet research.

Be passionate: When requesting help, don’t be a downer. Don’t bellow about being laid off. Don’t moan about how long you’ve been looking for work. Don’t whine about your dwindling finances. Don’t look or sound desperate, or try to pressure or guilt trip people into helping you. Negative energy does not open doors. Instead, focus your energy forward, for you will eventually connect with a great job. Get passionate about your next great gig. Share the excitement about the possibilities with others. Say things like “I am really looking forward to being part of a team again!” or “I am focusing my job search on the north end of town because there are some cool companies there and I think it’d be great if my next job had a quick commute.”

Be regular: People are busy and can’t possibly keep you in mind for weeks on end after one brief email or phone call. Reach out regularly – every week or two – with an upbeat update on your search and a request for contacts into some different companies.   It’s unlikely that a call or email from you every week or two will push anyone over the edge. It’s more likely that without regular follow-up, they’ll forget all about you in spite of wanting to help.

Be appreciative :Every second of time that someone is paying attention to you is a gift. If the information they offer you is not particularly helpful, say thank you anyway. Their time and attention has value. If you find yourself needing more than 30 minutes of someone’s assistance at one time, check in to be sure it’s okay with the person, and afterwards, the gracious thing to do is to offer to return the favor in some way, or perhaps take them to lunch as a gesture of appreciation. Even when they demur, they’ll feel appreciated.