Please (do not) excuse the interruption. Because interruptions are time wasters. And there’s no time for time wasters when the clock is ticking on your job search. Whether you’re currently employed and seeking a change or dwelling within the realm of the “in-between,” by failing to prepare, you’re preparing to fail. And that type of preparation isn’t conducive to employment. So try these four time management tips instead.
Set up a work station
Ask yourself, where am I most comfortable? Do I work better at the coffee shop, at home or in the library? Sometimes a change in careers requires a change in scenery. So if you’re unemployed and at home all day, shake it up and take your laptop over to Starbucks. The goal is to be comfortable yet focused, so make sure to choose a workspace where you can tune into the job search and still tune out the distractions.
Have a schedule
If you say you’ll be researching for one full hour, clock yourself to be sure you’re meeting that commitment. And that doesn’t include travel time to the library, having that latté in the middle or talking to the person at the table next to you. It’s an hour of work. Hard, focused work. Make sure to stick to your priorities, and tackle the most important things first thing in the morning when you’re fresh and ready to go.
Only apply to jobs you’re qualified for
A good number to stick to for your job search is between 10-15 applications per week. There’s a stat that states only 35% of applicants are actually qualified for jobs they apply to, and since your resume should be tailored to each job opening, don’t waste your time on an application that will be sent to the wastebasket. Sure, you may have transferable or soft skills that can relate to the position, but if the job requires five years of experience and you’re a recent grad or have only two years under your belt, keep looking.
Sometimes going off the grid gets you on track. We have instant communication tools at our fingertips, but they can interrupt the thoughtful work required for your job search. It’s tempting to constantly tap into your email, but only do so no more than three times a day. Most job and career emails require thoughtful consideration, and even though you’re eager to hear back, a hiring manager receives up to 250 resumes per corporate job post. So Instead of waking up and immediately checking your email hopeful there is an interested employer, try starting your job search each day with a good breakfast and some light reading. You might even try meditating or getting a good workout.
Looking for a job is a job, and if a job is worth doing, it’s worth doing right. Right