Job Search help

I’ve previously mentioned how important it is for you to tell everyone you know you’re looking for a job. But how exactly do you start that conversation?

You can’t just call or text your acquaintances and say, “Hey! I’m looking for a job in X field. Know anyone who is hiring?”

Be more subtle.

If the person is a professional acquaintance, offer to meet them for lunch or coffee. Find out how things are going in their office and talk about current trends. When they ask how things are going for you, be truthful. Tell them you just got laid off and are looking for something similar. Or completely different.

This gives the person the opportunity to offer help. If they don’t offer, ask. Ask if they would mind critiquing your resume, or letting you know if they hear of an opening at their firm or elsewhere.

The best way to get help is to ask for it, but be specific. If you aren’t getting any bites on your cover letter, have someone read it over. If your resume needs updating, ask someone who was recently hired to review it. If it’s been a few years since you went on an interview, have a friend mock interview you.

How have you asked for help from colleagues, friends and acquaintances during your job search?

Work Resolutions

Image from:
Will any of your resolutions include work related items? If they don’t, maybe they should. Here are some suggestions.

Be more patient toward your coworkers, supervisors and bosses. You have no idea what is going on in their personal lives. I’m not suggesting that you let your colleagues walk all over you, just be less quick to get upset or angry.

Speak up
No one can read your mind. If you want a raise, set a time to speak with your boss and ask for it (with appropriate documentation of why you deserve one, of course). If you want to move your desk to another cubicle or nearer a window, ask. Fretting about people not reading your mind will only frustrate you.

Give credit to others
Admitting that your brilliant idea came from Marge in Accounting, doesn’t make you look incompetent (especially if afterall you were the one who implemented it). It makes you look like a team player.

Know when to walk away
In regards to being stuck on a project. Sometimes all you need is an hour or an evening to gain fresh perspective. (Note: this does not work on deadline.)

Treat deadlines with respect
Even if in your office “deadline” means sometime between Thursday and Monday, don’t be that guy who turns it in on Tuesday. People are counting on you to get your work done and on time. So even if deadlines are flexible, treat them as if they are final.

Meet new people
You never know who knows who. Introduce yourself to someone new. If you aren’t proud to say where you work (or it won’t be well received) just state what you do. You might meet a new business contact who can save your department money in printing costs.

Keep your work space clean
A clean desk means a less cluttered mind, or something like that.

What other work related resolutions should be added to this list?

If you never ask for what you want you won’t ever get it

Image from:
Earlier this week, I discovered a misprint/typo in the University of Missouri’s student newspaper for an event I am helping out with. Instead of listing the event as September 30, the designer created a graphic that listed the wrong date.

Not a giant big deal, but I thought at least a correction was in order. Then I got to thinking more about it and decided that the best way to make up for the mistake would be to give the event a free house ad. So I wrote to the Editor-in-Chief and told him about the mistake and what they could do to make it up to us.

The house ad and correction ran in the next issue.

After doing all this I realized that most people will give you what you want if you just ask for it, especially if it is to correct a mistake. Or if they can’t give you exactly what you want, they might be able to come up with something similar.

This concept is true at the office as well, if you want a different desk, or another piece of art in your office or cubicle, ask. The worst than can happen is the person says no and you have to keep the floral print or desk with the wobbly leg.