Disillusioned with your degree? Did you graduate from university, and now you can’t find a job?  Do you spend your days applying online? Have you sent your resume to over 100 or 200 or even 500 job ads  – and heard NOTHING?

Holding a cardboard sign saying  looking for a job

 

You feel frustrated by this whole experience. You are working hard at getting a job in your field, but nothing. You go to your part-time job (because you are not even lucky enough to have a full-time job) or even your two part-time jobs – and you are upset. Pouring people’s non-fat double double cappuccino espresso extravaganza is NOT what you went to university for.

You went to university so that you could get a good job. One that is stable and well-paying. You deserve this; you have paid your dues. Your family asks you over and over how your job search is going. Each time you hear these questions you feel like a failure.

The question you ask yourself is “am I ever going to get a job in my field or is this it for me?”

The answer…heave a huge sigh of relief here…is that this is NOT it for you.

It is going to be tough and it is not going to be overnight, but you will find your way out of customer service jobs from hell.

1)      Stop relying on job banks for your big break. It is NOT going to happen this way. Mind blowing stat time – only 2% of people who apply online through job postings actually get the job. This means that if you are spending your time applying to online job postings – you are wasting 98% of your time. Ouch!

2)     You need to know what you really can do and what you want to do.  Remember, unless you graduated with a degree in engineering or law or medicine (or something of that ilk); university was essentially a stepping stone. Find out what you are really all about. What are your strengths and passion? What kind of personality do you have? Are you an introvert or an extrovert? Figure out yourself – go back to your university’s career department and take the Meyers Brigg Type Indicator (MBTI) or find out where you can take a career assessment near you. The Strong Interest Inventory is also an effective tool.

3)     Maybe go back to school.

Oh no I didn’t!!! Did I suggest actually going BACK to school? Yes, yes I did. But let me be completely clear here. I am NOT suggesting go back to university – to get yet another degree. If you can’t find a job with one degree, what makes you think that you would be marketable with two?

As a job searcher, you need to understand that it is not about YOU. The employer is not going to hire you because you have your degree. The employer is going to hire you because you solve a problem for them. Once you shift the perspective from a sense of entitlement or of a sense of “I need a job!” to one of “I have skills, I can solve problems, I can add value to your organization” you will be on the path to finding a job in your field.

The only way you will be more marketable is to get the experience and training that you need. Employers hire people because they need money. How are YOU going to make them money? What skills do you have? What experience do you have?

Going to college – shock, horror – after university means getting the practical knowledge and training that you may not have received during your university career. You may have learned to write a mean research paper while getting your degree, but you probably did not receive real, practical training.

Also, if you go back to college, you will have your degree (which some employers still insist on) but you will also have some training. Not to mention the contacts you will have made while in college – a win-win situation.

What if you don’t have the money or the inclination to go back to school right now?

1)      Learn how to use social media as an important tool in an effective job search

2)     Network , network, network

3)     Volunteer – but be strategic with this. You can definitely temper strategy with altruism.

4)     Take advantage of the free, government-funded resources that are available

You could also get a coach. Work with that person to really figure out your goals and together create an action plan to help reach that objective.  Having a coach means being accountable to someone, someone to celebrate even your smallest accomplishments and someone to support you as you develop self-awareness – the foundation for a much happier life.

 

Coaching really does work – and it is most definitely something that will help you – if you are ready to jump into your future.

Wishing you a strategic job search,

Tonya

 

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