Now is the time for savvy job-seekers to ignore the myth of holiday-hiring slowdowns and embrace the notion that employers are always looking for exceptional candidates who are the right fit and in the right place at the right time. How can you make the most of this season?
First, it pays to take a fresh look at your resume to determine if it presents you and your qualifications in a way that suggests excellence or if it’s just a boring re-hash of past job duties and responsibilities. Most employers are looking for that special candidate who is not only capable and qualified, but also offers that “Wow!” factor that sets her apart from the rest of the crowd.
Another way to assess your resume is to ask yourself if you were the hiring manager for a particular position, would you hire yourself based on how you come across in your resume? If the answer is no, then get busy and polish that resume so it sparkles and customize those cover letters to address the specifics of each targeted position!
This is also the time of year when we tend to see relatives and friends that we haven’t seen recently; this provides wonderful opportunities to add to your lists of contacts and networking possibilities. Be sure your elevator speech is in good order and let others know that you’re seeking employment and ask for their help. You never know whether Uncle Joe or Aunt Sally may be acquainted with that certain someone who could be the contact that you need to unlock the door to your next employment opportunity! Networking is still one of the surest ways for job-seekers to land a new position. Enlarge your circle of contacts and let everyone know you’re seeking employment.
The holiday season may also be an appropriate time to pursue volunteer opportunities at your targeted companies. Some companies are glad to have volunteer help during holiday periods so that paid staff can provide more assistance to loyal customers or focus on year-end special projects. Volunteers may also allow employers to adjust staffing needs to enable their full-time employees to take time off to be with their families. Volunteer workers who do a good job and are a good fit are often rewarded at the beginning of a new calendar year with an offer of temporary or permanent employment.
Finally, don’t wait until the New Year to take stock of your current talents and skills. Now is a good time to think about acquiring additional education and training to make you more marketable. For those who intend to go back to school or pursue certifications in January, you must start now to locate classes and begin the enrollment process. It may be too late to achieve the results you seek if you wait until after the first of the year.
So now is the perfect time for all you knowledgeable and strategic thinkers to pursue those employment opportunities so that we can celebrate your success in landing your new job!
“Is Job Hunting During the Holidays a Waste of Time?,” a recent post on The Huffington Post, offers some interesting year-end hiring numbers and additional tips.