Spring is a time for cleaning out cupboards, flinging open windows, and freshening up. With new life all around, a Wall Street Journal article this week reports renewed optimism among job seekers, along with reports of more interest and interviews with employers.
Just as you spring clean your home, maybe it’s time to spring clean your job search and hit the market fresh and ready for success. Five quick ideas to capitalize on improved hiring conditions this spring:
- Scrub up your resume. If you’ve been using a tried and true version, it’s time to revisit and revamp. Add volunteer work or training you’ve been doing while job seeking. Focus on skills you have sharpened. Look at past experience and make sure it is truly presented in terms of achievements, not just a list of responsibilities. Tighten up wording and add some new zing to the language so the resume feels fresh and new.
- Dust off old contacts. Reconnect with people you met early in your job search, even those you interviewed with way back when. Ask how they are doing and inquire about current opportunities. Share with them your fresh approach and positive energy.
- Throw open the windows and let in the fresh air of new connections. If your network feels stale, like you’ve tapped every connection, it’s time to create new ones. Join a new professional group, weekly networking group or volunteer organization. Actively seek new ways to get out and connect.
- De-clutter your mental outlook. Just as closets packed with old junk needing sorting out, you may need to sort through old and limiting notions about your value in today’s job market. Dig deep and see if there are negative, self limiting feelings that may be inhibiting your job search. Throw that clutter out and refill with positive declarations of your skills, expertise and ability to bring great value to your new employer.
- Sweep off your front steps. The entrance to your home sets a tone for what’s inside. Likewise, your personal appearance is the first thing an employer will notice when you arrive for an interview. Job seekers often hesitate to invest in their look. But if you’ve been wearing the same outfit over a long job search, spring is the time to update your style. Try a consignment store if you are being extra careful with money. Also make sure your haircut is sharp, your shoes polished and your nails trimmed. Little things that will not only make a better impression but will help you feel better about yourself this spring.
Tell us what you are doing to take advantage of a brightening job market. Are you experiencing an increase in openings and interviews?