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Don’t Resolve to Get a Job This New Year

If your New Year’s resolutions include finding a new job, let me make a suggestion: Forget about it.
Because most New Year’s resolutions are little more than vague wishes that never get acted on: I think I’ll lose weight … I’ll try to get more organized … I’d like to find a new job.
Sound familiar?
Instead of resolving to find a job, you should commit to finding one. Because a commitment is a whole lot more powerful than a resolution.
Here are four ways to get hired faster by making a commitment to finding a new job this new year.

1) Set a clear goal with a deadline.

I’ve written many times before about setting job-search goals, so I’ll just hit the highlights here:

  • Choose a specific job title to aim for. Wrong: “I want a job with benefits or something in retail.” Right: “I want to be a store manager.”
  • Set a deadline, because this tells your subconscious that you’re serious about your goal. Pick a date in the future when you want to be employed, then get going.
  • Make course corrections. Once a week, sit down and analyze your results. What activities brought the most calls from employers? Do more of them. What didn’t work? Change or stop doing it. What’s next? Plan your week ahead to do more of what’s working and less of what’s not.


2) Stop wasting time.

A lot of folks complain that they don’t have enough time to look hard for a new job. Baloney. You have the same 24 hours that Bill Gates and Donald Trump get each day — you just need to use them more productively.
So, the next time you’re tempted to watch TV, crack open a beer, sleep in or read People Magazine, ask yourself: Will doing this improve my life five years from now? If the answer is no, use that time to look hard for a job, which WILL improve your life long-term.

3) Start job hunting right.

Instead of passively waiting for jobs to appear in the want ads or on the Internet, go out and make your own luck. That means, tell everyone you know about the position you seek.
Do NOT call folks up and ask, “Do you know anyone who’s hiring?” I can answer that for you right now — McDonald’s and Wal-Mart are hiring.
Instead, be specific about what you want and why you’re valuable. Say something like this: “I’m looking for a small to mid-size firm within 45 miles of Phoenix that wants to save $200,000 or more on their shipping this year — that’s what I’ve done as an operations manager several times. Who do you know that I should be talking to?”
If you call 20 people this week with a statement like that, you should get at least one referral that leads to a job interview. That’s a 5% success rate, considered extremely high in marketing. Try it and see.

4) Never, ever give up.

The most striking difference I see between successful job seekers and people who struggle for months to get hired is how they handle problems.
Successful people are not free of problems. They simply refuse to let problems keep them from their goals.
Unsuccessful job seekers, on the other hand, let almost any problem derail their efforts:

  • I’m too tired at night to look for work …
  • I don’t have the right skills …
  • I don’t know anybody …
  • I don’t have a college degree …

Let me be blunt: Unless you’re in a coma, there’s really no excuse for not finding a job.
The answer to any job-search problem you might have is out there somewhere. It may be on the Internet, in a book at the library or on the tip of someone’s tongue. Your job is to persist until you solve your employment problem and never give up until you’re hired.
There’s no shame in being unemployed or under-employed. The only shame is in remaining that way.
So, starting today, resolve to stop making wishy-washy resolutions about finding a new job. Instead, commit to finding one.
Here’s hoping this is your best year ever!


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