Changing Career Goals in the Changing Season
Fall into new employment opportunities by planning ahead. Summer is winding down, the kids are going back to school, summer holidays are ending and the tourists are going home. Now it’s time to think about what new opportunities await.
Fall is a time when employers are planning for the upcoming season and are forecasting what new services, programs and products they can offer their customers. Now is a great time to get a head of the game with a Ready, Set, Go attitude.
Ready – it’s time to prepare
1. Make a list of companies or organizations you would like to work for
Write down which job opportunities interest you, what appeals to you about the company or organization and how you see yourself fitting into that position.
2. Start networking
Start talking to past coworkers, family and friends and let them know what you are looking for. It’s not just what you know but who you know that may get you the job. You may already be aware of someone who works for that particular company that you can use as a reference to land you an interview.
3. Create or update your social media profiles
In today’s world, using social media to market your self is common place. Employers are using social media to advertise employment opportunities, as well as search out talent. By making sure your Facebook, Linkedin and Twitter accounts are up to date, you will show employers you’re in the loop with what’s happening and current in your communication skills. Not many employers are hiring dinosaurs lately!
4. Brush up on your skills
While you still have some free time, practice skills you haven’t used in a while. Take advantage of free online training such as GCF Learn Free. Speaking of free, the Parksville Work BC Centre (Career Centre) has free workshops you can sign up for to assist you with your job search. Have some of your certifications expired? The last part of the summer is a great time to sign up for short term courses like FoodSafe, First Aid and WHMIS. You’ll be ready when employers are asking for these qualifications.
Set – up a plan for job search or employment:
5. It takes an investment to job search. Look at your expenses and see where you can save time and money.
a. Now that the kids are back in school, although your daycare costs may be less, you might still need before or after school care. Often there is a waiting list for your child to get into a reputable daycare; contact them now to secure a spot for the fall. Apply for government programs to help pay for daycare costs.
b. How are you job searching or getting to your new job? What kind of transportation is required? For example: you may be using your car a lot more to get to work, is it in good working order? Can you use public transportation to save money? What about carpooling with a friend or co-worker. Dusting off that old bike may be an option, it’s inexpensive and you’ll get in shape in no time. These are examples to keep transportation costs down when starting a new job.
c. Dress for success. Put away your summer shorts and take inventory of what your wardrobe consist of for work appropriate clothes. Do you have interview clothing or a power suit for that presentation that will help you land your dream job? An economical way to build your clothes closet is to shop at thrift stores, and consign items you don’t wear anymore. Better yet, shop your friend’s closet. Trading clothes and accessories can be both rewarding and entertaining. Use community resources that advertise free clothes to help fill in items you need to complete your work attire. You can look great and feel good by not contributing to the landfill and saving the environment!
6. Practice your interview skills. Be ready to answer those tough questions that employers ask. Think about all the questions employers have asked in the past…which ones did you answer well or which did you struggle with? Practice makes perfect. The internet is full of questions and answers employers may ask you, so take time to research interview techniques. Practice with a friend or someone you feel comfortable with, before your interview. Not only will you feel more confident, you will feel more relaxed knowing you have the right answers to sell yourself to an employer.
Now that your budget is in place, your targeted resumes and cover letters are done, your references have been confirmed and your list of employers is completed, set up an appointment to speak with an employment consultant. They have an abundance of Labour Market information to share, will support you with your job search and help you commit to an action plan. The employment consultants can review your plan, help you make adjustments along the way, offer training and/or transportation supports to ensure a successful outcome in obtaining sustainable employment. Confirm you’re ready and set to move forward.
Now you have everything you need to fall into new opportunities or perhaps a new career. Start handing out resumes, contact employers, get on social media and market yourself. Network with your community and set up prospective interviews with employers you respect and want to work for.
Make it happen before the leaves fall!