Posts filed under ‘Networking’
What parent hasn’t heard this chant before? Don’t you remember as a kid going on a road trip…. impatience consuming your every moment.
I’ve found myself asking the same question about our economy. And I know I’m not alone.
Are we there yet? Are we finally on the up swing? Has the bottom come and gone?
The good news; YES companies ARE beginning to hire again.
YES they ARE creating NEW jobs…. and while all this is encouraging news, the unemployment rate is still very high – however you chose to spin the numbers.
The high unemployment rate means the competition for each open job is tighter than it has been in the past. Companies have a great selection of candidates which they can match their hiring requirements.
So who are the companies that ARE hiring? And who’s getting the jobs?
Obviously not all industries are coming back the same as they were. There has been a lot of verticals hit hard. This makes a larger segment of the population who are now having face something they haven’t had to do in the past.
For those facing the hard truth about what to do for future prosperity, it’s difficult. And accepting that a career change is the answer may be the hardest part. If you’ve been working in a field for 10+ years the thought of making a change is gut wrenching and can be scary.
It’s difficult to figure out what to transition into next. And once you identify what you want to, figuring out HOW to make the transition can be frustrating, but NOT impossible.
Whatever you do, don’t panic. Here’s a few ideas to get you started:
1. Join a local networking group. Start by gathering information about what people do and their skill sets. Find out where people work and see if any of those industries seem interesting to you. You may notice a few people with the same skill sets that you have but doing something different. You might even find it’s easier than you think after you learn more about what other’s do in their daily career.
TIP: If you don’t have a local one to join, form one with the folks that were laid off with you. It’s a good way to pass job leads to one another and give moral support.
2. Another good way to prepare yourself for a switch is by finding a good career coach or counselor. Make sure you find someone good and experienced with “career transition”. Interview them first so that you find the “right” fit for YOU. It’s a good way to take control of YOUR own career situation as well. It might seem like a big investment in the short-term, it’s a solid one for long-term.
TIP: If you’ve been laid off by an employer, see if offer any outplacement services for people like you. Sometimes your former employer will cover a certain amount of career coaching services within a certain period after your lay off date. But don’t delay because there is typically a time frame that you are bound by.
3. Another great way to transition into a new career is by working with a staffing agency (or two or three!). Often times staffing agencies will take a look at your overall skill set to better match you for their assignments. Be flexible so that you can gain a level of experience and build up your resume. I recommend you also take advantage of any computer based training staffing agencies offer typically at no charge. It might mean you spend a few hours in their office but it could be a huge leap in your skill set AND building a relationship with the office recruiters.
TIP: Be NICE! The easier you are to work with the better your chances of them calling you for their assignments. It pays to build good rapport with the branch recruiters and it could take you a long way if they like you.
4. If you are a more introverted career change candidate there are TONS self-help books and blogs on the subject. Check out the reviews before you buy books and ask others for their own personal recommendations. There are A LOT of people who have gone through career changes in their lifetime, so remember that you are not alone.
I know a lot of people landing jobs right now. Some of them are back doing what they’ve done for years. But a huge segment of people are choosing to do new career things not by choice…. and you know what? It’s working for them; it’s been a good thing.
So are you there yet? How about now?
Looking for a job right now is tough. But hang in there, hold on tight and keep the job search momentum going.
It’s amazing how much opportunity will come your way if you lay a solid foundation, nurture and continually build what you start. I talk to a lot of folks that start a search, stop to take a break and then start back up again. They then feel exacerbated by not producing any results, feeling like it should still flow together despite the gap in time. Continuity will rule in your career search.
Even after you land your next gig, the foundation that you are building today will empower you in the future. Who knows when you could decide to go on the market again, but if you keep the momentum up you will be a head of the game. Continue to build and nurture your professional network.
I know job searching is a tough road. I’ve been there myself. Applying, interviewing, following up… it gets old after awhile. It’s a FULL TIME JOB looking for a job. If you are “in it to win it”, don’t give up, stay focused on your target goal and you WILL succeed.
If you find yourself at a crossroads where you might be feeling discouraged or lost, find a good support system to pep you back up. If you can’t find one in your area, start one yourself. You’ll be surprised at how wonderful it is to share job leads and lend support to fellow job seekers. Plus there is always a new idea or take on what you might be able to do better to land you that job. Sometimes it pays to hire a career counselor or coach.
Companies ARE hiring. You CAN get a job. You ARE hirable.
Don’t self doubt yourself. Keep moving forward.
If you should find yourself down in the dumps, when you don’t know what to try next or are out of job leads, don’t go down the dark path of defeat.
Instead, FIND empowerment.
I know it sounds silly, but subscribe to one of those daily affirmation websites or blogs, watch some comic relief on TV or read a good motivational book. Whatever will put a smile on your face is good. Keep your chin up and stay positive, it will only help you out further in an interview.
When all else fails, call me (831-464-1041) or send me an email (email@example.com) and we can take a minute to brainstorm together on creative approaches for possible job search success. YOU CAN DO IT.
Stay positive, keep focused and good things WILL come.
Do you need a good pep talk? I’m always here for you.
Santa Cruz, California is a fabulous coastal town located about 30 miles from San Jose. It is also home to the World famous Beach Boardwalk. If you haven’t heard of this 102 year old amusement park, go rent the movies Lost Boys and Dirty Harry’s Sudden Impact. You are sure to book your Summer trip after those viewings.
This unique coastal town is also home to UCSC and for any old school techies you may remember SCO (Santa Cruz Operation. SCO’s technology was sold off but many of it’s tech community has stayed and attracted a new crop of tech entrepreneurs.
Last week I attended one of Santa Cruz’s finest Meetups: The New Santa Cruz Tech Meetup. If you didn’t have the opportunity to attend, here’s what you missed:
It was a PACKED audience at the AnnexSpace on Cooper Street in down town Santa Cruz and several of the presenters left us excited about some currently hot technology companies.
UserVoice was up first. Marcus Nelson, co-founder was absolutely engaging with this product pitch. UserVoice is a “on-line suggestion box”. It’s a great social media tool that allows companies to enhance and engage the “customer experience”, something that is extremely important in this economy. The techie audience I came to the mixer with were blown away with Marcus’s presentation style, mixing it up with humorous terms such as “freemium”. As a non-tech, I was absolutely sold on UserVoice. If you haven’t heard of UserVoice take a moment to take a peek and follow Marcus on Twitter @marcusnelson.
LinkedIn was up next. Sheena Gogna works in Business Development for LinkedIn. Sheena described LinkedIn for us as your own “Professional Identify On-line”. LinkedIn turned 6 years old! Sheena also shared that they hit 40 million members. Most of the features she shared were fairly basic, but she also talked about the “share widget” which is kind of cool. She said LinkedIn is currently working to build out more applications soon. Her presentation style was very informative.
Spare Change should give all economic naysayers a run for their “pennies”. Mark Rose gave an entertaining, to say the least, presentation of his company. Mark told the story of the Spare Change inception so well, you just have to hear it from him direct because he’s full of personality. I wasn’t expecting to laugh so much at the tech event, but I did. Mark Spare Change is a “micropayments” company. They are the brains behind payment for all those silly little games people play on Facebook, Myspace and Bebo. Mark gave a hilarious product pitch that made me want to go home and learn code so I could jump on the silly games and stuff band wagon. Spare Change is processing $2.5 million a month in micropayments a $30 million annual run-rate. He described it as “counter recessionary”.
Finishing off the night were three of the UCSC Business Plan Contest finalists with their pitches. Brilliant student minds with some wonderful innovation. If I were a college recruiter looking for fresh out of college ideas, I would have hit the candidate jackpot with this group!
The organizers gave us an opportunity to network was after the presentations. I loved the room FULL of talent and the organizers had a great spread of pizza and drinks. My favorite part of the evening was meeting new technologists.
Next month the New Santa Cruz Meetup is will have a Green Tech agenda at the newly redesigned Dream Inn conference room.
How about we go the next face to face networking event together?