Dr. Seuss, Career Advisor?

Not long ago, just before celebrating my daughters’ 2nd birthday, I came across a tattered copy of Dr. Seuss’ Happy Birthday to You!, and couldn’t help but smile as I thought back on pivotal moments in my life and career when Dr. Seuss’s wise words resonated. Since adopting this book back into my life for the benefit of my growing child, I have found myself stuck on the most famous line in the book, just as I was thirty-something years ago.

“Today you are you, this is truer than true. There is no one alive who is youer than you!”

As a Professional Career Strategist, I pride myself on advising our clients by inspiring them to see the true value within themselves. Now that I am once again immersed back into Dr. Seuss’ work through my child’s eyes,

I couldn’t help but wonder – was Dr. Seuss the world’s best career coach disguised as a children’s book writer?

 

Let’s think about this for a minute. As children, we’re taught to be confident, believe in ourselves, do the right thing, and naturally, we’ll land amongst the stars. Then, reality happens as we grow up: we learn the agony of defeat and the sting of disappointment.  We face the harsh coldness of “Thank you for your application, but…”

Little by little, all of those wise words we clung to and repeated before bedtime while reading some of Seuss’ classics seem as useless as, well, a cold plate of Green Eggs and Ham.

If Dr. Seuss (2.0) stepped into the role of a career coach, here is how we reimagine the applicability of some of his more famous quotes when considering a job search.

“Sometimes the questions are complicated and the answers are simple.”

The way we see it, this is Dr. Seuss, Career Advisor, reminding you to simplify your job search. You will not be a great fit for every role out there and not every sector is going to be ideal. Moreover, not all career fairs, networking events, and speed interview sessions will be helpful. Hone-in, for simplicity purposes, on a few sectors and companies you want to learn more about and start going through your connections, both digital and real, to make inroads. The Cat in the Hat would be proud of That!

 

“So be sure when you step, step with care and great tact. And remember that life’s a great balancing act.”

I’m pretty sure I’ve given this advice before, though perhaps with less of a rhyme scheme going on. Dr. Seuss is correct, though, as he is basically suggesting that you be thoughtful and strategic in your job search. So often, we hear the “quantity over quality” is what lands one a job. Applying to 200 jobs just because they have openings will not turn the odds in your favor for an interview or offer and could very well lead to MORE frustration when you don’t hear back.

Rather, focus on the companies and roles in which you are truly interested, even if that means only applying to 10 roles. From there, reach out to people at each company, follow-up, express interest in the role, and request time to learn more about the opportunity and overall organization. Basically, Dr. Seuss (the Career Advisor) is suggesting you balance out applying for quality roles with making essential connections at each organization, as this will significantly increase the likelihood that you actually land an interview.

 

“It’s not about what it is, it’s about what it can become.”

Your past is your past, and it is exactly what has led you to where you are in your life at this very moment. Most likely, you’ve learned a thing or two from your previous job experiences, good and bad. The purpose here, as Dr. Seuss has indicated, is to take that experience and focus on what your career can become – and lead with this in mind. Recognizing an abundance of responsibilities from your career to date is a decent start – but if you can’t speak to how this will apply to your future success, it’s time to recalibrate. Perhaps Dr. Seuss, Career Advisor, would ask you the following:

One fish, Two fish, At that role, What’d You Accomplish?

Don’t forget to note your achievements and make a plan; you can do all this eating green eggs and ham!

In all seriousness, we often lose sight of what we set out to do in the first place.  Unwanted advice, opinions, and poor career advice can negatively affect the direction in which we were hoping to steer ourselves. Losing trust in ourselves and the value we can bring to the career world would make Dr. Seuss a very unhappy career coach, er, writer.

On the anniversary of Dr. Theodore Seuss Geisel’s Birthday, celebrate with an inherent call to the brains in your head, the feet in your shoes, and empower yourself to venture on in any direction you choose.

It’s YOUR career: ReFresh. Revive. Renew.

Contributor: Michelle Dempsey, MS, CPRW

 

 

The Top 25 Jobs in America… Are Probably NOT for You

The “top job” in America has a median salary of over $116,000.

Sound good to you? Or does it sound like, with this salary, you’ll never even be close to paying off

your student loans/mortgage/business debt?

Either way – it shouldn’t matter.

Recently, Glassdoor.com put out this list, highlighting the Top 25 jobs in America. We’ll be honest with you, we scrolled the list, and were shocked to find that “Career Strategist” didn’t make the cut (Hey, we think it’s the best!).

The list was filled with many managerial positions, many more engineering positions, and many of those with decent salaries. All pretty comprehensive material if you’re on the hunt for a new – and better – career.

But what this list left off is critical. In fact, we think the one factor that should be considered, sometimes above all others – is what this job means for you, in terms of your own personal satisfaction.

Even the top-rated job in the world will not provide you with much if it is not aligned with who you are, what your background is, what your innate skills are, and – more than anything – what you need to be happy.

Life is stressful. Maintaining a meaningful and successful career path requires a lot of dedication and (wo)man-hours. We spend so much time focused on our jobs, or finding a better one, that it should undoubtedly be a job that fills our souls, and not just our pockets.

That being said, you cannot put a price on loving what you do.

Ever hear of the friend-of-a-friend that left his very high-paying (albeit high-stress), big-city, CEO job for the quiet streets of Nowhere, USA to relax and finally enjoy life a bit more? As Career Coaches, we’ve heard this tale first-hand, and we support it! The trick is to shift gears into the appropriate professional lane – and with ReFresh Your Step by your side, you too, can wind up with the #1 job in America – the #1 job, for you, that is!

It’s YOUR career: ReFresh. Revive. Renew.

Don’t Go it Alone! The Case For a Career Strategist

Ready for some cold, hard, truth? You’ve come to the right place

The truth is, embarking on a career search alone can be a tad, what’s the word? … Intimidating.

We’d love to tell you that your job search will be easy. That it’ll make you want to prance through fields of daisies while whistling Dixie and relishing in the joy of completing job applications. That you can go it alone, give it your best effort, and a slew of hiring managers will jump forth and offer you loads of money.

Certainly, you’ve acquired a great education, racked up some commendable experience, and have the utmost confidence in yourself. That helps… a bit.

It is an admirable feat in itself to come to the realization that it’s time for a new job. For whatever your reasons are for gearing up to make a change, we’d like to offer up a piece of free advice – the same advice we’d offer to the world’s most experienced CEO and to the world’s most inexperienced recent college grad:

Don’t go it alone.

Sure, you can attempt to reach the peak of Mt. Everest on your own. But with a Sherpa to guide you, you’ll have key advice on how to navigate the challenging terrain, AND someone to keep you company along the way. My point here? Two is better than one. Sometimes, a support team is better than even two.

The benefits of hiring a professional Career Strategist (or team of them!) during YOUR job search venture far outweigh the idea of taking it upon yourself to navigate the course solo. Among assisting in answering your most bewildering questions regarding your search, (Can you help me figure out what I’m even good at?!), we are here to listen. And in this world where everyone seems to have too much to say, a listening ear can ease even the most nervous of job seekers.

When you connect with a ReFresh Your Step professional, you won’t just be given the opportunity for superb documents to showcase your accomplishments, you’ll be given the ability to have a dedicated support system – a dedicated team player (or multiple ones, depending on your need) who will not only listen, but answer all of your career search needs.

“To listen is to continually give up all expectation and to give our attention, completely and freshly, to what is before us, not really knowing what we will ear or what that will mean. In the practice of our days, to listen is to lean in, softly, with a willingness to be changed by what we hear.”

Schedule your free consultation with a ReFresh Your Step professional today to get a glimpse into how the power of a partnership with a professional career strategist will change the way you view your career search – AND it’s outcome. We’re here to discuss your resume/cover letter, LinkedIn, job goals, interviewing, or a litany of related topics. We’re also here to listen, truly listen.

It’s YOUR Career: ReFresh. Revive. Renew.

Looking to make a move? Partner with a career strategist to ensure a big win!

A Resume Writer’s Advice: When to Leave Your Resume Home

I am a resume writer (among crafting other career-related documents) and while the former is certainly a main focus of my business, I am the first to tell you that it’s not always necessary to use your resume to land a great role.

Emily, are you literally saying I can toss my resume* out the window forever? Sign me up! Also, how do I then get a job?

Hold your horses! Let’s talk this notion through first. There are a handful of companies out there that are adopting a new type of hiring strategy in order to “reveal true talent” and source employees based on their sector-specific skills, rather than their work history (i.e., a resume).

Blind-hiring, as it’s called, means that your resume serves no purpose and most likely won’t even get an initial glance.  It means that you’ll instead spend anywhere from 4-6 hours on the job at your prospective employer, performing a task similar to that of your potential job description.  It means that you won’t get paid for it, but if you do a really great job (no pressure!), you’ll be in the running to continue in the process and perhaps land yourself a good job.

Cool idea? Maybe, if you have a less-than-ideal work history for that role/sector or don’t meet initial requirements outlined in the job description. While the trend may be slowly growing – and can allow applicants with an innate skillset to stand out when they would not if resumes were the go-to – blind-hiring is not yet common enough to replace the more traditional career-search techniques.

Overall, the true talent it reveals in a person’s work ability leaves out the very important process of getting to know a person through conversation, giving an interviewee the chance to promote their background, and determining via interactions whether he or she has found a good fit or not.

Many people could flip a great burger, but if you can’t sell to all the cars in the drive-thru, can’t work the register and don’t work well with others – you may not be a great fit after all, catch my drift?

The bottom line here?  The no-brainer? The obvious, ugly truth? Yes, cool idea. But this trend is a lot like man-buns: it works well in some sectors, definitely not in others, and is likely to fall by the hiring trend wayside faster than you can say, “double soy cafe latte with extra whip and a drizzle of caramel” in your most hipster of voices.

The resume is where it’s at. Always has been, and by our calculations, will continue to be, even as hiring trends evolve.

The resume remains your most important piece of armor when entering the often-brutal world of the career search.  It is your protective shield that says “Yes, I have all of the qualifications, accomplishments, and skills necessary to take this job and exceed all expectations.”

It’s the proof in the pudding.

The ReFresh Your Step proof in the pudding, that is. An RYS resume and LinkedIn profile** will help you outline and communicate the very best of you, before you even make it in for an interview.  And it’s with the RYS interview strategies and tactics, that you’ll yourself the new gig, before ever having to perform pro-bono.

It’s YOUR career: ReFresh. Revive. Renew.

 

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*We still recommend always having an updated, strategic resume (and LinkedIn profile that is complementary to it). **LinkedIn is one job search component that has crossed from “trend” to “career mainstay.” We suggest making sure your resume and LinkedIn profile work in tandem but are not identical to one another!

I Have a Dream … For Your Career to THRIVE

This Monday, marks the 48th year that we commemorate fearless civil rights activist, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., for the dream that he had, and all of the valiant steps he took to accomplish it. This MLK day, ReFresh Your Step is giving you the okay to enjoy the day off from work by doing whatever it is that makes your soul happy (we, of course, will be working but doing so makes us happy!).

However, we do ask for one thing in return – this Martin Luther King, Jr. Monday, we are urging you to keep your dream alive – of finding the job you want and pursuing the career you deserve.

The job you might dream about and feel, “I don’t think I can get this one.”

With the right guidance, you CAN.

Just like Dr. King needed his supporters to stand behind him, march with him, and help instill the confidence necessary to make great changes to our world, we are here to do the same for you and your career. Because we know that facing any great challenge – whether it be starting the career search process from scratch, gearing up for your next interview, acquiring the skills to negotiate a higher salary – is much better done in the company of those who support you, we are here to help you take all the steps necessary to fulfill your dream job goals.

In keeping with the theme of Dr. King’s passionate work – we also urge you to choose the job with a corporate culture that provides you with a fair and just working environment. While more and more light is shined on the need for equality in our workplaces, changes are being made to allow for this to happen. As professional career strategists, we are thrilled to be a part of the movement. In our upcoming Corporate Culture Series, we’ve provided a simple, user-friendly guide to help you get acquainted with the four different types of corporate culture. How you are treated, valued, and thought of within your professional “home away from home” is just as important as how you are compensated.

All labor that uplifts humanity has dignity and importance and should be undertaken with painstaking excellence.” Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Remember, the dream of a new job IS within your reach. With ReFresh Your Step on your side, marching with you into the dawn of new successful endeavors, we’ll have you surpassing your own expectations – and then some.

Stay tuned for even more career scoop in our upcoming Corporate Culture series, where we will give you an inside look at the four different cultures, and help you decide which one is best for you !

It’s YOUR career: ReFresh. Revive. Renew.

–Michelle Dempsey, MS

Thankful Thoughts For a Job Search

At ReFresh Your Step, we like to think that embarking on a career search, whether by choice or by circumstance, is one of the greatest things you can do for yourself and your future. You see, we like to focus on the positive, and with Thanksgiving upon us, it’s time to give the good ol’ job search the credit it deserves.

This year, we urge you, job seekers, to be THANKFUL for the search!

That’s right – we strongly feel that people in the search for a new career have it better than ever these days. With countless tools and opportunities to reach out, connect, investigate and research potential job opportunities, we have to be thankful for how much easier the search has become over the last few decades.

Here’s why…

Think back to the first job you ever applied for. You were likely in high school, hoping for that first job opportunity that would help you make a few bucks to start a spring break fund or save for a new car/college.

Well, if you’re part of the ReFresh Your Step team’s generation, you probably crafted a resume on a bulky desktop (or massive laptop), found opportunities via newspaper, word of mouth, or a career center, and did research on companies at the *gulp* library. In-person interview? Of course. Skype interview? This is NOT Back to the Future!

But now?

We’ve been able to gain control of the modern day job search!

You immediately access the web to start your job search. You most likely Google facts on companies, opportunities, job listings that interest you. You come across ReFresh Your Step’s website (or a similar firm) and are immediately turned on to all of our career advisory services. You set up a consultation, arrange for a new resume and cover letter and even meet via Skype to brush up on interview skills (without ever having to leave the comfort of your couch).

Think that’s good? Leave room on your thankful list – there’s more!

Now you’ve narrowed down your job search and made a list of contacts to reach out and connect with. With the click of a button, your documents are sent out into the world like a boomerang waiting to come back in for a landing with opportunity tied to its wings.   You can’t wait to let your future place of possible employment know just how eager and determined you are, so you let social media give you a little push. With your spiffy new LinkedIn profile you are able to confidently connect with the top players in your sector and let your accomplishments do the talking.

And of course, with all of the career advisory services that ReFresh Your Step provides…

We urge you to be thankful for your choice to allow RYS to help you climb to the next rung in your career ladder. In addition to resumes/cover letters, our services range from professional documents to networking techniques, interviewing strategies and strategic career consulting

It’s hard NOT to be thankful for the fact that you have all of the best tools at your disposal as you enter the job market.

Remember, a secret ingredient in the special sauce of career success is “enthusiasm” – not just a dash of it. On this Thanksgiving, maintain an open mind, a thankful spirit, and be grateful that you’ve taken to the opportunity to propel yourself towards success.

It’s YOUR Career: ReFresh. Revive. Renew.

Happy Thanksgiving and we wish you thankful thoughts and much career success!

 

Success Story Friday: Michael

Welcome to our latest #SuccessStory installment; each week, we focus in on one of our clients whose journey to success was both inspiring and strategic. We provide insight into their background, our collaboration together, and the outcome. As always, we welcome questions and comments. Email us anytime!

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Solutions-driven business leader offering expertise in driving business improvements that facilitate company-growth, applying complex analysis and strategic planning.

Does this description automatically make you think of a hard-working marina salesman? Someone laboring as an electrical technician on the yachts of Staten Island, New York?

Not exactly.

Which is exactly why Michael’s journey towards his dreams is our Success Story of the week (#SuccessStory).

Michael came to us as a referral – an interesting one at that, as his work history was unlike anything ReFresh Your Step had ever seen. Completely self-made, Michael single-handedly made his way from the marinas of Staten Island to the shiny oak conference tables as a Private-Client Banker at a bank in one of the wealthiest areas of Long Island’s north shore. It wasn’t long before we understood why he was already on the road to more success – his easygoing demeanor and innate smarts easily opened doors for him.

Although Michael had achieved so much on his own before making the career-altering decision to reach out to us, he was hungry for more. When he made the decision to collaborate with ReFresh Your Step, he was “ready for the big time.” With his sights set on one of New York City’s well-respected financial institutions, Michael trusted us to turn his history and work experience into a resume that would make him as desired as the fresh-out-of-business school MBA graduates that flock to the financial district of lower Manhattan in droves, year after year.

Michael did not have the typical educational background as most candidates looking for jobs in the financial sector would have. Without a Bachelors degree, Michael was concerned that he would not be as desirable a candidate as his competition. We assured Michael that this was not a problem for us at ReFresh Your Step, so it would not be a problem for him either – as we could easily highlight all the BEST Michael had to offer in a new and updated resume.

A chrono-functional hybrid resume was the perfect solution for Michael. This allowed us to tie in an additional section to the document that clearly and specifically indicated Michael’s expertise and achievements in finance thus far. With this combination-resume format, all of Michael’s “bests in show” were easily recognizable to prospective employers.

Once his leadership and award-winning sales reputation were on full display in Michael’s new resume, his education and background-related concerns were quelled. In fact, within just a few weeks, the job offers began rolling in, and Michael soon found himself living out his dream, landing an incredible opportunity and becoming a big player in the financial sector.

“Thank you so much for all that you’ve done!  Not only did I land a great job, I’ve interviewed with three additional firms, and may have another serious offer, that I may entertain.  The resume is an absolute hit.  Not only does it match my “interviewing voice” it also highlights my accomplishments, which are transferable and such a selling point.”

Michael’s “I can do this” attitude coupled with ReFresh Your Step’s writing and career-coaching skills helped Michael to not only achieve his dreams, he was able to do so without having the typical background and education that the big players in his sector usually seek.

Like Sinatra sang, “If I can make it there, I’ll make it anywhere.’’ – and after getting to know and working with Michael, we know he can, and will, make it anywhere.

It’s YOUR Career: ReFresh. Revive. Renew!

Contributor: Michelle Dempsey

Quality Versus Quantity: Why it Matters for Your Job Search

I wish I had a dollar for every time a client mentions that he or she is “only applying to roles online” or “submitted 100 applications online over the last week” and is shocked no one reached out for an interview. Seriously; with all that money, I could have then justified buying the latest iGadget that will inevitably end up in my home anyway (sigh).

That “sigh” is lamenting both my household’s unexplainable need for Apple products as well as my clients’ equally unexplainable need for making their go-to job search strategy almost exclusively applying online. Let me clarify, though: this appears to be their go-to strategy before we start working together. When I delve further into the “why” behind their thinking, I am met with one of a few rationales:

  • I was told this is the way to go. I need to get as many applications in as I can!
  • I didn’t know of another way. I am just submitting as many applications as I can.
  • Isn’t this the best way? I want to apply for as many roles as possible and can do so in my jammies.

As much as these statements make me want to either bang my head against a wall or laugh (it depends on the day), I typically respond in kind and with the following point:

Your job search strategy should be about quality rather than quantity.

Any guesses about what I mean there? Bueller? Consider this:

Your resume is no longer a stand-alone document and it’s not all about your responsibilities; rather it must be a strategic marketing tool that focuses on your achievements and is aligned with your LinkedIn profile, use of the full LinkedIn platform, considers your interview prep, etc. Even if your resume and LinkedIn profile are both amazing and your LinkedIn use is top-notch, no one will bother to view either or invite you in for an interview if all you do is apply online willy-nilly (note: I need to use the term willy-nilly” more often).

Sidenote: Ever heard of an Applicant Tracking System (ATS)? This is the software that automatically scans your resume/application whenever you apply online. What happens next to your job application for that role is based on a keyword scoring system. Basically, even if your absolutely amazing resume submitted for the role indicates you are a great fit for the role but it is missing out on the keywords connected to said role, your whole application will be on a dead-end street and NOT in a recruiter’s inbox. Basically: APPLYING ONLINE IS (typically) A GINORMOUS WASTE OF TIME!

As such, here are my *Top 5 Strategies for a Quality Job Search:

1) Job Search Documents: Actually ensure that your resume and LinkedIn profiles are focused on your achievements, well-written, and supportive of one another (but not identical!).

2) Identify your Goal: Are you looking to move up in the same sector you are in? Are you looking to transition to a new sector? Regardless, what are the top 5 companies you wish to target and do you know anyone at any of them? Make lists!

3) Target for a Bull’s Eye: Regardless of whether or not jobs are available at a specific company, reach out to people at each target organization. When possible, leverage your connections and/or leverage yours to leverage theirs. Your goal is not first and foremost to get an interview but rather land an informational conversation. Doing so may very well lead to an interview but you have then bypassed the whole “online application to nowhere” route. Ask your connections to make connections for you, also offering to do the same. This goes a long way!

4) Messages: Consider your message when reaching out to people; remember, it’s not about a specific job at this point. Your message to individuals, whether it is a personal connection or not, is more focused on learning about the company and hearing his or her opinions on the organization, how that person landed a job there, and what advice he or she has for you. In short, show contacts that you value their opinion and they are more likely to go to bat for you and provide essential information about the company itself.

5) Apply Online…When Necessary: Look, I live in the digital age and spend just as much time on my iDevice as you do (see above); I get that you will likely need to apply online at some point but here are some extra considerations:

  • Identify the central keywords in the job description and tweak your resume for that specific role; remember to keep a main resume and save another version as the one you will use for a specific role. Minor modifications to your resume that reflect a specific job description will do wonders in getting you past the ATS (Note: you do NOT need to do this for your LinkedIn profile as that is not scanned automatically by software when you apply for a specific role. Rather, a person will look at the profile once you have gotten past the ATS and people are generally smarter than software programs. Generally.)
  • Apply online and let someone at the company know you did so because it is protocol but you wish to speak to someone about the role and overall organization. Request to know whom your contact suggests would be the ideal person to speak to regarding the role? Follow-up!

Bonus Tip! Track Yourself (a.k.a., Spreadsheets are Fun!): Look, I may be preaching to the choir here if you have Sheldon Cooper-ized your life (for my non Big Bang Theory readers, if you obsessively label everything and adore organization). Regardless, I suggest tracking your progress. Start with Point 2 and craft a spreadsheet that breaks down the companies you wish to target (aiming for 5-7 at first) and including any contacts you have. Note whom you reach out to, when, and the result. When needed, send gentle reminders to people for conversations or connecting emails and note that as well. Look at your progress and make alterations when needed.

Countless clients have reported being shocked at just how quickly this job search strategy overhaul has led to informational interviews, real interviews, and job offers. While applying online sounds like a good and the only route, placing some strategy and parameters around your search is a superb way to ensure a more efficient and effective to landing your next big role.

 

To Our Career Growth…and Yours!

One of the most rewarding things about being a top career advisory firm in South Florida (and nationally!) is the opportunity to help our clients rise to the top in their careers. While we see growth in our own company month-after- month, it really all comes back to your growth and the trust you have in us to support you along your journey.

After 10 years in the Career Advisory industry, we are proud to continue fostering  your growth and in order to do so, my team and I set and reach our own milestones.

It was with great excitement and truly a career dream of mine since opening the doors to RYS in 2008 that I officially  became one of the youngest in the world, and only South Florida based resume writer to hold the highest certification degree in the industry AND offer highly tailored, fully-scaled career advisory work! The MRW (Master Resume Writer) is like the PHD of resume writing. Not only am I the one of the only writers to have this certification in South Florida, but there are only 25 other writers in the industry – globally – that hold this level of certification.

In addition to my own personal growth, I have loved expanding the company to include a powerful, amazing team of writers. They have each been integral in the organization’s expansion (thanks, guys!) but also in partnering with countless clients. As I tell each client who works with a team writer, not only do I stay personally involved in each project but you also have the added benefit of working with another highly certified writer and career adviser on your personal career growth. That’s right–all of my writers are certified, hand-picked by me, and serve as an additional resource for each of our clients.

Let’s hear it for our career growth…and yours!

Three Ways Your Job Search is Like Dating

This post was originally published on Scott Singer’s (Recruiter Extraordinaire) fantastic blog, No Charge For These.

I do not normally dole out dating advice, seeing as how I have been out of the dating scene for several years and my work revolves around doling out career advice. That said, I am keenly aware of how similar the two are and often draw comparisons when speaking with clients. Why? Simple: many people have some fear of both but can relate better to dating; in drawing a parallel between the two, I feel that it helps people better understand how to more effectively job hunt (though, if someone is a great job hunter but not so great in the dating department, the advice could go both ways!). Without further ado, here are three ways your job search is like dating.

 

1) Going With the First One that Comes Along Rarely Works Out Long Term: If you are out with friends one evening, how likely a scenario is it that you will meet “the one” within the first five minutes at a bar/club/concert/whatever you single people do these days (I am obviously taking dating into the real world here; I did just have a brilliant idea, though, of creating a Tinder for the job search…).

My Advice: Clearly, playing the field for a bit is in your best interest. Look around, talk to people, do some research to find out where you will find the best fit for your current situation and long-term goals. If a “dream job” comes along and sounds like it is too good to be true, it probably is. Additionally, even if you REALLY feel connected to an opportunity one day, take your time to think, learn about it, and speak to others so you can make more of an educated decision (i.e., don’t accept on the first offer. How often does a one-night stand work out!).

 

2) Negotiation is Key for Future Happiness: Although I am off of the job and dating market, I know this for sure: dating and job searching both require a certain amount of negotiation (both up-front and over time). All too often, people fall into the trap of believing that he/she needs to say yes in order to move forward. While that may work initially, it becomes obvious within a few weeks that only taking into account the other side’s needs or requests results in a bad match. At that point, one can cut his/her losses or try to make it work but neither option is really ideal.

My advice: Remember that whether you are courting a job or a person, the process works best as a 2-way street. Yes, your needs are important too! Think now about what you prioritize in a job: a great office culture, the option for occasional tele-commuting, a superior benefits package, free on-site haircuts…Obviously, be realistic in what your needs are, especially for your given level and sector, but have some chosen points in mind and be prepared to discuss them when the time is right. This also might mean passing on opportunities that are not up to your standards but that’s what standards are for: waiting for Ms. or Right (Boss), not Right (Now).

 

3) Your Friends Can Help you Score: I’d like to rephrase the words to a popular song for you. “We all get jobs with a little help from our friends.” Here’s another song rephrase: “Applying online killed the job search.” Both are true and yield important lessons; turn to your friends, your actual (non-virtual) network of connections to help you find the right fit. Think about where people work, who they know, what they do, and if any of this information is relevant for you. The best opportunities are found not via applying online to countless roles but rather through leveraging your network to leverage theirs.

My Advice: Identify your Wingman/Wingwoman for the job search. No, this person is not the one who is most likely to speak to strangers in a bar and ask for a number; rather, it’s the person who knows a lot of people (in real life and has 500+ connections on LinkedIn), is willing to makes introductions for you, and can provide you with the advice you need to make an informed decision about a particular opportunity.

Here’s to much success in your job and love life…and that you find a job you love!