As part of the Job Networking group I help lead in the Minneapolis area, we present a quarterly All-Day Job Search Workshop. It's a full Saturday that includes various presentations on effective job search strategies, resumes, interviews, and networking. We also then bring in several local executives, HR pros, and recruiters to allow workshop participants a chance to meet with someone that can give them individual coaching, resume help, or mock interview practice.
We always get high-marks on our feedback forms at the end of the day. However, we also often get someone that feels it's too hard to put the information to use. They wanted easy "plug and play" solutions for their job search and feel discouraged when they realize it will be a lot of work.
The fact is… a job search is not easy!
It's seductive, when you watch commercials for job boards on TV, see a myriad of books and online resources on effective job search, and hear people tell of their job search success, to think that it's been narrowed down to a science. Do steps A, B, and C, and a job offer will pop out of the other end of the process.
Unfortunately, it's not that easy. There are no "one size fits all" solutions. Everyone's situation is different and something that works incredibly well for one person will not work so well for another. While there are certainly common strategies any job seeker would benefit from applying, some will produce better results than others depending on the individual circumstances.
Similar to anything else in this world that involves people and relationships, it's not an exact science. People respond in unexpected ways at times and nothing is foolproof. The frustrating part for many job seekers, and why they feel it's too hard, is that they don't want to have to manage their way through relationships and personalities. They would rather fill out the facts in an application online, hit 'Enter', and get the offer. A job search, and life, don't work that way. It requires us to step out of our comfort zones; to do things that don't necessarily come easily or naturally to us. It requires effort and a willingness to try new things.
It can be done… by virtually anyone… but it's not easy.
If you're in a job search, take a look at your own attitude and activity. Are you simply going through motions that aren't producing results, or are you doing what's necessary to get a new job?