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A note to your future self: Six things you’ll learn with experience when it comes to job hunting

Kate Allen, Managing Director, Allen Associates

We’re all familiar with the saying ‘practice makes perfect’, and when it comes to job hunting, things are no different. Finding work can be tough and takes time – that’s the bad news. The good news is that things get easier with experience. If you’re looking for a new role, you’ll find plenty of advice to guide you on the way – from articles on how to craft the perfect CV to tips on the topics to avoid during an interview. However, there’s one thing you might not hear: looking for a new role will change you as a person. It will increase your self-awareness, build your confidence and help you to focus on what you really want. Taken with the right dose of positivity and resilience, job hunting can be good for you. Here’s why:

Your dream job may not be what you think

Do you remember leaving school, college or university and being asked ‘what career path do you want to follow?’ In reality, very few people know the answer to this and those of us that do often change our minds. Of course, it’s important to have a goal in mind, but be aware – there are jobs available that you haven’t thought of, or even heard of yet. So, treat everything as learning experience, because it’s only by exploring the job market (and getting to know what you’re good at) that you’ll start to form a picture of what your actual dream role is.

Opportunities come when you least expect them

However much you plan, it’s not possible to prepare for everything and in your working life there will always be change - from promotions to redundancies and everything in between. By making the most of every opportunity – however small – you’ll increase your chances of success. If your manager suggests attending a networking event, an afternoon workshop or taking on a new project, always be enthusiastic. Above all, when it comes to your job hunt, be flexible and don’t be afraid of trying something new. Approaching the job market in this way will open up the number of opportunities available to you and may lead to a role that’s even better than you expected.

It’s important to keep learning

Finding a job is the perfect opportunity for self-reflection. To write your CV you’ll need to list what you’ve learnt in your previous roles, and naturally, this is where continuing professional development pays off. So, go the extra mile to make your CV stand out from the crowd. Build your personal brand and ensure you have the up to date skills necessary for your chosen industry. Whether it’s taking an extra qualification or finding someone who can mentor you, if you can demonstrate that you take learning seriously, you’re likely to impress employers.

A good team can’t be underestimated

Did you know that the likelihood of people staying long-term in their jobs increases with the number of friends they have in the workplace? That’s because the more connections you form, the more you feel truly embedded within your company. Good teamwork not only boosts productivity, it increases Employee morale, creating a place that you enjoy coming to every day. Wherever you aspire to work, having supportive colleagues at your new company will help to make the transition as smooth as possible. Therefore, factor this in when you’re job hunting. Take time during interviews to ask about the team you could be working with and make sure that it’s the right cultural fit for you.

Waiting for the right offer will pay off

When you’re looking for a new job, it’s imperative to have a targeted approach. Although it’s important to get into a habit of regularly applying for roles, don’t rush to complete an application for every vacancy that you see. Prioritise your efforts, and when you spot your dream role take the time to really sell yourself. The same goes for job offers. When you’ve been searching for work for a while, it can be difficult to turn down an opportunity. However, it has to be right for you. Ask yourself if you agree with the company ethos and if this is really what you’re looking for. As hard as it may be, waiting for the right role will pay off in the long-term, so do your research thoroughly.

There are many ways to find a job

With so many jobs advertised online, it can be easy to get bogged down spending your time completing application after application. Of course, hard work pays off and job hunting is a time when you need to put your nose to the grindstone, but don’t forget that there are many ways to find a job. In fact, seven in ten jobs are not found online, they’re found through networking. Think outside the box, from creating your own website to attending events and building an impressive LinkedIn profile. Don’t underestimate the power of your connections, as well as the value of using a top recruitment agency. Just ensure you use all the tools you have in order to find success.

Can we help you? Click here for more information or browse our new Candidate Resource Centre on the website for the latest tips and guides to support your job search 

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