Kick start your job search and advance your career with these 10 career and job search resolutions.
Happy 2020! We hope you’re starting the new year off ready to hit the ground running.
Here are 10 career and job search resolutions you can make to kick start your job search and advance your career this year.
1. Update and maintain your LinkedIn profile.
Take a look at your LinkedIn. Is it up to date? Could it use a little sprucing up? Make sure that your profile contains all of your latest information and consider posting regularly to the platform. Content like articles (written by you, showcasing your expertise in your area) and industry news can go a long way towards raising your profile and increasing your credibility, making you desirable to employers.
2. Make new connections.
The more people you know, the more doors will be open to you. Connections are essential to landing good jobs and to career advancement. Make friends! Connect with people on social media and in real life. Say hello. Find common ground. If you make one new, valuable, connection each week you will feel this expansion in your life and possibly find that these people can lead to a world of new opportunities. Of course, people are more than just tools to advance your career. Making new connections can expand our worldview and improve our lives in countless ways.
3. Maintain your existing network.
Making new friends doesn’t mean forgetting about the old ones. Old friends and connections are valuable and should be treated as such. Not least because at some point you may find yourself in need of a reference or a referral, and the last thing you want is to be reaching out to ask someone for a favour when they haven’t heard from you in five years. Doing that makes everyone think you’re a jerk and not want to help you. Maintain your contacts by saying hello, having coffee, meeting for dinner, and showing an interest in their lives. Start this week by reaching out to someone you haven’t bothered with in a while.
4. Update your resume.
The beginning of the year is a good time to take a look at your resume and make any updates required. Is your work history up to date? Does it look professional? Have you used action words, avoided clichés and demonstrated the value you would bring to an organization? Most important: would you hire you? If you’re not sure, get to work.
5. Write a new cover letter.
How’s that cover letter looking these days? It is getting a little old and rusty? Could it use some refreshing? Probably. Consider writing a new cover letter for the new year, particularly if the old one hasn’t brought you the success you hoped for.
6. But also update your resume and cover letter for each job posting.
Make it a resolution not to send out the same resume and cover letter for every job posting. Your application materials should be tailored to each and every one, to utilize the keywords used in the posting, and to reflect that you have done your due diligence learning about the position and the company. Always tailor your resume and cover letter for individual positions. If you do, you’ll be ahead of the game.
7. Add to your skillset.
The more skills you possess, the more hireable you will be and the better your career prospects. Add to your skills. Take an online course related to your career, learn a language, or improve your soft skills. It is always smart to become a better communicator, listener, problem solver, etc.
8. Eliminate time wasters.
Do you spend so much time scrolling through social media, you could probably have a whole other side career with that time? Join the club. Or do you regularly binge watch Netflix for 12 hours a week, then tell yourself you “don’t have time” to focus on your career? It’s not easy to change habits but you might want to try taking a look at how you spend your time and think about how it could be better spent.
9. Get involved in something.
Find a hobby or something that allows you to connect with other people in useful ways, like volunteering or taking on a side gig. Being interested in the world makes you more interesting to everyone, including employers. It also gives you the opportunity to learn, network, and use your mind.
10. Move your life forward.
It’s easy to get stuck in a rut or find yourself remaining in an unhappy or unsatisfying situation. If this is your situation, vow this year to change it. Getting out of a hole may be a lot more difficult than staying in one, but it’s worth it. If you’re unhappy in your current position with the company where you work, or with your entire career, find a way to improve things.
Don’t do anything rash, or that you might regret, like telling the boss where to go and storming out, or even quitting one job before you have a new one lined up. Be smart and be cautious, but be brave and be proactive.
Make this year your best year yet.
Are you making any career and job search resolutions the new year? What are they?