As I mentioned in my post, New Year, New Resume, if you don’t love your job, it is not a bad idea to be prepared in the event that a better opportunity presents itself or to begin to pursue new opportunities yourself. Here are a few ways that you can prepare yourself to find your dream job.
- Take Time to Research You have the advantage of time and not everyone has this. Check out the job market in your area of interest or expertise. You won’t know if there are better opportunities if you don’t look. What are the salaries like? Can you afford to make a move right now with your current expenses? If you want to change career paths, does that mean taking an entry level position? There are millions of questions out there when it comes to looking for a job, so take advantage of having a job, and get to know the space you’d like to be in. Once you’ve taken the time to research, tweaking your resume to emphasize your qualities that match common requirements is a good idea. A little research goes a long way, and could save you time in the event that a great job comes along. Then you won’t be rushing to put together a resume, you will have taken the time to do it right.
- Keep Learning You may not love your job, but what can you learn from it? Maybe you can take advantage of classes or workshops offered by your employer. If it’s not a great fit for you, what knowledge could you potentially use in future jobs or your personal life? Use this thinking when you update your resume. Help potential employers see why the job you are in now will make you a great fit for the job openings with them. For example, if someone is looking for a job as a field service technician and they had a job in retail, why not talk about how that experience makes you ideal for working directly with customers in the field? By taking an active interest in learning more about your current job, you might find your next career step, or who knows, maybe you’ll even start to love your job? Keep an open mind. When I worked in the food industry, I learned how to chop a bag of celery in under 2 minutes. Come Thanksgiving, I am the official celery chopper for celery! It’s a small skill, but a skill none the less.
- Be Tactful If you’re not planning to leave your job in the next two weeks, keeping your job search private might be a good idea. It won’t help if you tell your co-workers or boss before you really know if you want to make a move. Try not to look for jobs at work. Instead, use your home computer, or go to your local library. At one point, I was looking for and applying to jobs during my lunch break at the library. As I mentioned in New Year, New Resume, most job search websites allow you to keep a resume private. By choosing this option, you will have to do the legwork, but you will control who sees your resume. Job searches can take months, so be sure to keep up your efforts at work and only tell your boss and coworkers when you are ready, which may be when you have a job offer you intend to accept.
When you are ready to create or update your online resume, our online Resume Builder tool can help you to create a resume from scratch, or use the Resume Upload feature, if you already have a document prepared. Best wishes! Amie Roemer America’s Job Exchange