5 Things You Can Do Right Now to Find Work
So, your job disappeared and it’s not looking like it’s coming back any time soon. It might be time for a whole new career. Or maybe your spouse got laid off and now YOU need to get a job, pronto! Here are five things you can do right now to start down the path of gainful employment.
- Brainstorm ten possible jobs that you might be able to do.
These don’t need to be jobs that you are going to do for the rest of your life (but they could be!). They don’t even have to be jobs – they could be freelance gigs. Or businesses you’ve always wanted to start. Or micro-businesses that could get a little extra cash coming in. The important thing is to get ten ideas down on a piece of paper so that you can see that you have options. And to get you ready for the next steps, which is narrowing these choices down. There are no bad ideas here! Write them all down.
2. Pick three jobs that actually sound interesting to you.
Ok, so maybe there were some bad ideas. But those bad ideas can sometimes be turned into really good ideas with a little tweaking! This is part of the work I do with my students in the Get Back to Work! Workshop. But YOU, right now, just need to pick three options that you are willing to pursue. You’re going to approach this in an “agile” way, which is fancy business speak for pursuing multiple options simultaneously to see what gets “traction” (another fancy business term).
3. Make a list of people you know who do this type of work.
Now that you have your three options, it’s time to find out more from the experts – the people who actually do this type of work, or work with people who do this type of work, or – even better, HIRE people who do this type of work. If you can’t think of three people who are experts in the three jobs you picked, make a list of people who might know someone who does this type of work. Still stuck? Ask around! You might be surprised who knows who. You just have to ask. And now you are ready for step four.
4. Set up a phone call to chat with the people on your list.
You knew I was going to ask this, right? Don’t worry, it’s not as hard as it sounds, because you are NOT going to ask them for a job. You are just asking them for information. You are calling to find out more about the work they do. It’s called an “informational interview.” This way, you not only find out what you need to be qualified to do the jobs on your list (and what the best and worst parts of the work might be), you also get a solid networking contact. Networking is how at least 70% of people find their next job. Be sure to have a list of questions ready to go, and keep it brief. And finally, don’t forget to do step five.
5. Thank each of the people that took the time to talk to you.
Email each of them a thank you note within 24 hours. It doesn’t have to be long, but it does have to happen. You’ll make a great impression that could lead to a job, and you’ll be practicing the art of gratitude, which is scientifically proven to make you a happier person. Also, it’s just good manners. Your mother will be proud. Also, it’s a great way to open the door to keeping in touch with them and strengthening your all-important network.
For more tips on how to find work, sign up for my workshop – Get Back to Work!