Monday, March 5, 2012

Setting Obtainable Job Search Goals

What is your ultimate goal when you start your job search each day?  If your answer is "To get a job offer" then you have the wrong approach.

By working solely to get a job offer, you are setting yourself for constant disappointment.  It can take weeks to hear back from an employer, if not more.  Setting this kind of goal will only serve to wreck your confidence if it doesn't happen. Without confidence, it can be tough to convince yourself to do the hard work required every week.  Instead of checking your e-mail everyday for that e-mail requesting a job interview, try setting these reasonable goals:

  • I will apply to X amount of jobs this week.
  • I will have X job interviews by the end of this month.
  • I will call X people to request information about their organizations.
  • I will make X new networking contacts via LinkedIn by the end of the week.
  • I will attend X career fairs by the end of the month.
  • I will subscribe to X job newsletters by the end of the month.
These are the kind of goals that are reasonable, yet are ambitious enough to keep you motivated.  An added benefit is they will also improve your chances of getting a job offer.  Here are some additional tips that serve to make your job search less stressful:
  • Don't apply to every job.  Make sure you have some qualifications before you apply (unless it's a job that is simply too good to resist).
  • Don't talk to people who have a negative take on the job search.  It's stressful enough dealing with it without someone else bringing you down.
  • Don't pursue only jobs that pay the most.  Find work that gels with your passions.
  • Take a break if you are getting too stressed.

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