It’s useless to say, “There aren’t any jobs out there for me.” It’s pointless to grumble about being stuck in a job that’s boring. These are self-fulfilling prophesies. If you believe it, it will be so.
My advice: Stop it! No more negative self-talk. It’s not making you feel any better. It’s not moving you forward. It’s not moving you at all.
It’s a waste to be your own worst enemy.
Yes, the economy isn’t pretty. The jobs are scarce. A lot of jobs aren’t fulfilling. Actually, they can suck the life out of us when the work is about following the rules and fitting in. (Seth Godin’s new book, Linchpin, gives you the skinny on this!)
The only way prisoners get out of prison before their time is by escape. If we want career freedom, we need to go the escape route.
There is no one-size-fits-all for prison escape. Each one is unique. We’re unique. But when looking for new jobs, we just do what everyone else does:
- Go to Monster for job postings
- Attend job fairs and respond to ads
- Ask around
Yada Yada Yada
Figure out what kind of work (not job) you want to do and find it.
Jobs don’t come with our names on them. They are about work we like or work we don’t. We’re happiest when we’re doing the right work.
Here’s what we generally want in an ideal job:
- A company we respect
- A work location that suits us
- People we fit with
- Work focused on either people, data, or things
We need to find the people who can recommend, hire, or promote us for these jobs, so we can pursue the career path we want.
Remember is this: It’s not who you know, it’s who knows you.
You’ve got to meet the right people on-line, in the flesh, by Skype, or over the phone. Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and other sites give you access to people who work in the companies that appeal to you, doing the work you want. This means taking the time to meet them and develop a connection.
Here’s how it worked for me before social media made things easier:
After 10 years teaching high school English, I was hungry for a new challenge. My knowledge of the business world was nil. I was intimidated by men (yes, they were all men) in three-piece suits and by those tall buildings. I was also sure no big company would hire a teacher.
I read What Color Is Your Parachute by Richard Bolles about creative ways to job hunt.
I wrote a letter to the human resource managers of five companies headquartered in my area, explaining my concern about the weak writing skills of high school grads. I asked if I could meet with them to find out what companies did to address that deficiency in new hires. (I assumed college hadn’t fixed the problem.)
Each business invited me in almost immediately. I learned about their operations, their style, and their issues. I got over being intimidated. In the course of things, someone (I still don’t know who) gave a copy of my resume to the manager of the region’s electric utility company that ultimately hired me. I never had to apply. By the time I was interviewed, I felt like I belonged.
Today, you can take steps to get discovered through blogs, tweets, and Facebook fan pages. From 80% to 90% of jobs, especially the good ones, are gotten because of networking. You have to be patient, creative, and fearless—that’s why “staying connected” is so important to becoming business fit. It just makes a huge difference.
Do you have a fearless career experience to share? It would help give courage to others.