Job Search Tip of the Week #12 (2019)


Don’t Just Look for a Job: Create One!

The “dream” job: It’s everyone’s … well … dream. But is it really the elusive goal most people think?

Career experts say no. In today’s workplace, the ability to innovate and take initiative is as or more important than many traditional job skills. You can have your dream job — with a little hard work. The trick is to identify and pursue opportunities to create your ideal job.

Have a vision

You can’t hit a target you can’t see, so your first task is to have a specific vision of what your job — and your success — will look like.

Does success mean more money, or having a creative outlet? What industry is your ideal job in? What responsibilities do you have? What is the corporate culture in the company that offers you the job?

Show initiative

Change It Up in Your Current Position

If you like the company you’re with but think you might want to do something different there, try these tips to facilitate a position change:

  • Inquire about cross-training and interdepartmental collaboration opportunities.
  • Volunteer to take on side projects and other responsibilities.
  • Go above and beyond your job description to help the company.

More detailed how-to advice here.

Research the industry and companies you want to work for. What do they need? What can you offer? Don’t be afraid to consider taking a unique approach that shows your initiative to prospective employers — for example, creating a video that makes a persuasive case for hiring you.

Keep moving

Build relationships with employees at your target companies. Get involved in the community. Volunteer within your company or industry. The Guardian suggests taking advantage of work opportunities that allow you to network, experiment with new skills and roles, and explore new possibilities to improve your company. Use the knowledge you gain to set career milestones — and then work to reach them.

Keep searching

Embrace change. Many people dream about the perfect job, but few take the necessary steps to make that dream a reality. If you aren’t currently in a job that is moving you toward your ideal career, then you need to make a move.

Need some guidance? The U.S. Department of Labor offers an impressive array of online resources that you can use to find and explore potential careers. A recruiter is another great (free!) resource for your job search that you should take advantage of. Recruiters have far-reaching capabilities to match your talents and goals with the right companies.

A good recruiter will speak in-depth with you about your qualifications and needs and help match you with good-fit opportunities within their vast client network. If you decide to work with a recruiter, be sure to give them accurate, specific information about what you want, rather than trying to contort yourself into a job that doesn’t fit your vision.

Remember: Use these practical strategies to invent your ideal job.

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