10 Quick Ways To Look For A Job In The Pandemic Era

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man looking for job

Whether you've been looking for a job for a while now, or only started since the coronavirus pandemic, you might feel overwhelmed by your job search.

Perhaps nothing can instill more anxiety in a career than the job search and interviewing process, whether it's you or your spouse trying to find a job.

Like perpetual first dates, job searching and interviewing are often perceived as the necessary chore “to put your best foot forward” and do whatever is necessary to “clinch the deal.”

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In this pandemic era, the job search is now even more intimidating.

So many are out of work, under-employed, furloughed, or just waiting for the proverbial shoe to drop, thereby upending your life and financial stability.

But it need not be so! You can reimagine the job-search process as the chance for you to reset your career and find work that both matters and financially sustains you.

There are principles that can help orient you to a successful job search, as well as an approach to interviewing that will put you on a solid career path.

Here are 10 quick ways to successfully job search during the pandemic.

1. Be flexible.

Build your experience on what you know, but expand your comfort zone in terms of the region, field, or industry. The same goes for the expertise you use to apply to new activities in the future, as well.

2. List criteria for how you want to work.

Consider what work best suits you:

  • More or fewer systems, protocols
  • Long-term or short-term projects
  • Hierarchy or team-based
  • Big division or small groups

3. Have an entrepreneurial mindset.

Either take a job or make a job!

Consider working at a large organization or the leading company in an industry, learn the practices, and make the human networking contacts. Then, find a niche where you are servicing the company or industry.

Many entrepreneurs successfully launch businesses by obtaining initial contracts with their former employers.

4. Figure out what you know in the workplace.

What discipline do you master? You should master what the marketplace recognizes and values (LinkedIn can guide you to keywords and descriptions).

These are specific skill sets that will help build your perceived value:

  • Do you know how to create an app?
  • Do you know how to run a meeting?
  • Can you take good meeting notes?
  • Can you apply data to problem solving and decision making?
  • Can you work on multidisciplinary teams and contribute to geographically dispersed work teams?
  • How good are you in understanding other disciplines, so you can communicate with them? You don't have to do their job, but you have to understand enough of what they do to be able to be a valuable player.
  • How well can you work with AI and cloud-based platform tools such as salesforce.com Salesforce Customer Relationship Management (CRM), Amazon Web Services, Google Analytics, Microsoft Azure, and IBM Bluemix?

Those interconnected platforms are going to be valuable for your future.

If you know how to use platforms and you know how to work with geographically dispersed workers, you will be in demand, because that is how future work is going to happen.

5. Learn how to collaborate with others.

Learn to compete to collaborate so you are a valued team member. Other people can bring you into their organizations and teams. This is a very important part of the search.

If you don't already know, then consider these questions: How do you learn to share success? How do you learn to share credit? How do you learn to be a good helper? Can you follow directions?

These are very important skill sets, because you'll be successful if a lot of other people want you to be successful. So, be prepared to tell your experiences that illustrate these strengths.

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6. Work on your communication skills.

Can you honestly answer these questions?

  • How good are your listening skills?
  • Can you manage defensiveness?
  • Can you give and receive signals and “read” people and events with insight?
  • Can you critique and take critiques in a positive, constructive way?
  • Do you know when to ask questions?
  • If you do not know what you are supposed to be doing, do you know how to ask for help?
  • How do others experience me?
  • How do I interpret others?

Because how you show up and how you interpret or maybe misinterpret what is going on will be instrumental to determine what is going to happen for you and what is going to happen to you.

7. Set practical guidelines for your job search

Look for opportunities to work on projects that build your experience and skillsets. Short-term or limited-time projects are good.

Be agile for different roles and opportunities that can be pursued simultaneously. Many people do part-time work while launching their own business

Use this next year to build experiences and skill sets that can increase your market value.

Pursue badging and certification for micro-skills that will make you more valuable, such as Google Certification for education, SalesForce Trailhead, and more.

8. Use different platforms to look for a job.

Expand your search and find multiple opportunities. Check out Flexjobs, LinkedIn, Monster, and more.

9. Join online communities that share your interests.

This will help you expand your circles and enable others with shared interests to open doors for opportunity. Understand interviewing for online collaborative work; that will be where opportunity is most useful.

Ask intelligent questions and make informed comments, so your most significant champions will connect with you and help you on your way.

You can also check out the specifications on job boards and see if there are experiences or skills you need to hone or feature to be more attractive to potential employers.

10. Build your list of recommendations.

This needs to be from reputable people who can vouch for your abilities and experience. Be prepared with research and good questions for interviews and queries. Recommendations matter.

Personal characteristics count for more than functional requirements: Your grit, likeability, and team value should be featured, presuming you match the criteria for job requirements.

Here is a checklist for your LinkedIn profile before you begin your search:

  • Did you incorporate the language that describes your aptitudes?
  • Can you articulate a clear focus for your career?
  • Did you describe skills sets that highlight the value of your own experience?
  • Did you list your previous work and accomplishments to match items #1 and #2?
  • Did you upload a video that presents who you are in an informative, engaging, focused, and likeable way?
  • Did you get endorsements of your skills and recommendations that support your description of yourself from credible bosses, colleagues, teachers, and others?
  • Did you reach out and receive LinkedIn acceptances to provide a wider network?
  • Did you list organizations and community interest groups that’s you have joined or affiliated with in your chosen field?
  • Have you uploaded your CV to describe your work and accomplishments?
  • Does your LinkedIn photo (please smile and look friendly) and copy look and read professional (no grammar and spelling errors and be concise)?

And finally, ask yourself what you would really like to do if you were not afraid.

If you are clear about what you want your work to do for you, the kinds of people you would like to work with, and the purpose or passion you share, then others will open doors for you to walk through.

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Jeff Saperstein is a certified career coach and author of The Interconnected Individual: Seizing Opportunities in the Era of AI, Platforms, Apps, and Global Exchanges. You can contact him at his website here.

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