Finding A Job Is A Full-Time Job

By: Donalyn Leskosek Spisak


Are you contemplating making a career change? Is this something you just decided today or is it something you've had on your mind for a long time but haven't committed completely to until today? Perhaps someone else made the decision for you. Maybe your company was recently bought out by another. Perhaps you were downsized due to a corporate reorganization. Regardless of the reason for your search, it's time to make a plan.

What is it you would like to do in this new endeavor? Are you seeking a position identical to the one you're leaving or have just left? If this is the case and the entire industry hasn't made changes that impact personnel adversely, it would be the easiest move to make. In this scenario you simply sit down and list all competitors and all companies affiliated with your last employer or it's competitors. You should in most cases know exactly who the players are and know which of your competitors you would be proud to be affiliated with. Of course it's not so simple if you've signed a non-compete which stands up regardless of reasons for unemployment-in this case you would have to take a copy of that non-compete with you and either have it looked at by your personal attorney or by a corporate attorney for the company you are interviewing with currently. If you've decided to move into another field entirely, do you have the credentials essential to that particular position? Have you seen people working in that particular position and decided you could do that job? The best way to make a true and honest determination about your ability to successfully land and work a new position is to go out onto the internet and utilize it for research purposes. Go to Monster.com, Careerbuilder.com or any other job board you may utilize and look for available positions of that type in your geographic area. Look to see exactly what credentials these companies seek for this particular position. Also look to see what other positions similar to those you have an interest in are seeking in candidates. For instance, you may wish to begin a new career in Pharmaceutical Sales. You may not have outside, business-to-business sales experience but, you may have sold retail in college. Maybe you were a product manager whose job it was to introduce new product into a market-this is a type of sales. Maybe you have a nursing background and a sales personality. These would lend themselves to a good description of what a lot of pharmaceutical companies seek in new hires. If the company ad states they wish actual pharmaceutical sales, don't apply-it will only make you look foolish. But, if they seek people with sales experience or the equivalent, apply. When you apply, make certain your resume and portfolio show you to be a true sales professional even if your past experience does not. How you present or represent yourself will tell a lot more about your sales abilities than your resume.

As you make your plan, plan your day and then plan your week. Set goals of what you wish to accomplish for each day/week. You may be seeking a position part time if you're currently employed. If so, know what hours you will be seriously working toward your goal and don't allow anyone or anything to interfere with you working your plan. If unemployed, don't fool yourself into believing you can sit back and get a new position working at it part time in a very short period of time. Make a list of potential companies once you have done your research. You may wish to begin with SIC Codes and list those companies with the same SIC Codes as the positions you seek. You can do this over the internet, at your local book store or at the library. Target your choices and then make certain your resume(s) address the skills and areas of expertise you have (that they have told you through their job-listings) that they seek. Don't bore your audience with information about your employment history that doesn't have anything to do with the position you are applying for. List your achievements and accomplishments in order to let them know you are the person who gets things done. Locate your decision maker and then if at all possible hand deliver your resume and cover letter. The majority of the time, your decision maker will be unable or unwilling to meet with you without an appointment. It doesn't matter. Hand- write a note and place it on your envelope or file folder which says "Hand delivered by _____". Wait one day and follow up with a phone call checking to make certain they received the information you hand delivered yesterday. At this point your interest level is well known. You should also have peaked their interest in you as well. If they tell you they have forwarded your resume to Human Resources, ask who in HR you may contact to follow up.

So far you have decided what type of position you are targeting. You have targeted specific companies and probably have segregated these choices into an A, B, and C list. You've contacted your potential employer and located the decision maker-hopefully not human resources. You've rewritten your resume to target the position and your decision maker's needs and you've hand delivered your resume and cover letter to the jobsite. You've left a handwritten note stating you hand delivered your resume and you've called to follow up and hopefully ask for the opportunity to meet with them in person. From this point forward, you get to sell you by being you. You should have your professional portfolio to present and a copy to leave behind to make it easy to see you are the person to compete with.

Today, finding a job is a full-time job. Just like everything in life, you get out of it what you put into it. If you work part-time, it will take you longer to reach your goals. Just sending the same resume for each opportunity will not get you the interview, let alone the job.

Donalyn Leskosek Spisak-Feature Writer for Infinity Broadcasting. For help writing your resume or your professional portfolio contact Donalyn Leskosek Spisak at 724-831-0549.

Author "How to Write Your Professional Portfolio", "What You Need to Know About JobSearching" & "Keeping Track of your Interview".

Owner of three websites and president of Recruitshop located at http://www.recruitshop.com. Also See http://www.pharmaceuticalsalesprep.com.