1. Get focused. Write down your preferred industry, geographic preferences, salary requirements, job search time frame, and brainstorm on what kind of company you see yourself working for. In other words, you must begin your job search at the end and work backwards. Get a crystal clear vision of what your outcome should be and what your focus is. A bullseye makes a great target. Passively jumping at things that come along on job boards hasn’t worked for a long time.
  1. Create your marketing collateral. A great resume and value proposition letter are essential. If you can afford to invest in yourself, hire a TOP certified resume writer. Your effort will pay off here.
  1. Create or update your LinkedIn profile. A quick tip about LinkedIn: keyword optimization is one of the primary ways to get more of the right eyes looking at your profile. Make sure your LinkedIn profile is keyword optimized to your next career move!
  1. Create a list of people you know to network with. Learn to network smart – don’t ask for a job; ask for information and contacts in your industry of interest. Tip: when you are networking, you are not job searching. Embrace this so you don’t feel like you are tricking anyone. True networking has great rewards. One being that jobs, contacts and information come to you.
  1. Define the best job search strategies for YOU. Recruiters can be helpful if you have a stellar track record and are staying in the same industry. Direct mail campaigns work on all levels, from entry to executive – done right, they can cut a line right to the decision-maker and land you interviews quickly. Networking works best when combined with other strategies. Job boards can yield some results if you are in a highly specialized position and industry – otherwise, you might just be wasting your time. Private equity and venture capital distributions can work for certain executives. You need to invest some time figuring out what strategies will work best for your particular situation. Need help? Get my book on the Hidden Job Market, invest in the Job Search Success System or call me at 830-331-9398.
  1. Create a schedule and keep it. Assign certain hours and certain days to commit to focusing on your job search. Personally, I prefer you create a modest schedule that you are always able to keep and also ensures you get enough time off. In a job search you want to leave extra time for relaxation and rest (just trust me – it works). Batch your activities so that certain days are devoted to ONE main activity. These may include sending out letters, research, making phone calls, or following up with people, such as recruiters. You will take the overwhelm out of your job search and get a lot more done in less time by doing this.
  1. BONUS tip. Automate your search to save you even more time. You can set up news alerts and email alerts to save yourself hours and hours so that all the information you want and need relative to your job search comes to you via your inbox. When I help my clients do this they tell me they go from surfing the net 20 to 40 hours a week to spending just a few hours, with more productivity and better results!

***You can purchase the e-books in The Career Artisan Series on Amazon for just a few dollars. E-books can be read on your computer, iPad or smartphone (you don’t need a Kindle!) – or purchase the PDF version here.