Time Management Strategies for Effective Job Search and Career Development


  Time Management Strategies for Effective Job Search and Career Development

Do you dread that one day, you'll have to rely on your job for the majority of your income? Do you fear reaching retirement age with a substantial amount of debt and no plan to pay it off? The job market is tough, but sometimes tough means good! Luckily, there are a few basic time management strategies that can help any job seeker or careerist find success in their field. In this blog posting, we've compiled a list of time management tips and tricks so that you can stop worrying about the future and start working today. Whether you're looking for work or are already employed, these strategies will help make things easier on yourself and get ahead at work.

Focus on what you have to offer

Though job-seekers stress over finding a position, the key to getting hired comes down to you and only you. Not your experience, not your background, not your education, but YOU. When in doubt of what to write about in a cover letter or how to really sell yourself to a potential employer, remember that hiring managers are more interested in who you are than what you've done. Try looking at each resume as an opportunity for self-marketing and self-promotion. Also focus on selling yourself during the interview itself. Do some research on the company and tailor your answers specifically toward them.

Practice makes perfect

Are you having trouble focusing in a group interview? Sometimes it can be hard to think on your feet. As a job-seeker, it's important to know that when the time comes for an interview or even as part of your cover letter process, you'll need to sell yourself and sell yourself well. Practice your elevator pitch. Practice the art of selling yourself as if you were selling a product or service over the phone. The key is to remember that an interview is not about what you know but rather about who you know (and who they want to know). More importantly, it's about building a relationship with the interviewer. The key is to have them come to you. That's exactly what you want them to do.

Use the time wisely

Evaluating how much time you need to effectively manage your job search is also important. There are two different types of time: productive and unproductive time. Productive time is time that is spent doing things that are important, saving money, or even just doing errands around the house (cleaning up leaves in your yard for example). Unproductive time, on the other hand, uses up precious minutes when it could be put towards more productive tasks. Do you spend time re-reading your cover letter over and over again and stressing yourself out? That's unproductive time. Do you typically watch television in the evening or go out on dates with friends? That can be both productive and unproductive time depending on what you're watching or where you're going. The key is to use your time wisely and remain focused on the task at hand.

Develop a career plan

Do you have a plan for your career? If not, it's important to develop one immediately. Career planning allows job seekers to focus on an important aspect of their lives: their futures. There are many career planning resources out there if you'd like to learn more. One good resource is the book, Act Your Age: How to Create Your Own Path in Life by Brian Tracy. Note that the book is about developing a plan for your career, but it does not discuss ways of getting a job: it's all about developing your plan first!

Keep up with your network

Have you updated your contact list lately? If not, that's another short-sighted time-consuming activity for yourself. It can be especially frustrating when you see an update show up on Facebook from a friend who just received a new job offer or another one of their friends who got into grad school and doesn't need help from anybody anymore. Networking is skill that you can learn through practice. Make it a regular part of your life and include it in your daily planner. Instead of simply being able to talk to people, you will be able to utilize your network and give them the necessary tools they need in order to help you in the future.

Don't let yourself get overwhelmed

A lot of job-seekers get so stressed over their job search that it actually makes them lose out on opportunities. One of the most common mistakes made by job-seekers is underestimating just how much work it takes to research employers and find the jobs they're looking for. Many job-seekers can get frustrated with themselves for not being able to find a suitable position, but there's no need to stress yourself out about it. Relax, know that you're leaving only footprints behind you are you as opposed to filling up your schedule with unfinished tasks and stress. Take breaks when necessary – if you don't see results after just one month (for instance), that's okay! It will take time to find your perfect fit so don't stay stuck in one place longer than necessary or if you feel like moving on from a particular job search. Take the time to observe, do research and gather information from networked individuals.

Take time off from your job search

In 2015, job-seekers have some tough decisions to make about whether it's best for them to keep working or take a vacation. Unfortunately, the results of this survey by PayScale show that more than half of workers are spending less than one week per month traveling without vacation. If you're like most job-seekers, you may need a break. That's why we've compiled the perfect guide about what to do when you need a break and how to put together your own personal digital assistant that would help free up some of your valuable time for when you really need it most. So grab a cup of coffee, relax, enjoy the read and remember that you should always be taking time to refresh yourself when you're in need of a break.

In Conclusion

If you find yourself working too much and not spending enough time job searching, fear not! You're definitely not alone. Do your best to keep track of your time and make it a point to become more productive at what you do for a living so that you can work less and search for jobs more effectively. It's important to develop good habits early on because they'll serve as positive role models for future job-seekers who are looking for ways of becoming more effective at their everyday tasks. The key to getting a job in today's ever-changing job market is to make sure that you're doing everything you can to help yourself. The more preparation and time you put into your career, the better off you'll be.

How much time do you spend each day on your job search? Do you feel like it's enough or too much? We'd love to hear from you in the comments section below!

Image source: iStockphoto.com/TMYDigitalPhoto

The post Let's Talk about Time appeared first on Career Planning Tips and Advice for Job Seekers.


Let's Talk about Time

As the job search season comes to an end, it's very likely that you're going to feel a little bit of burnout. I know I've been really tired lately and have been spending my evenings watching YouTube videos about how to use resume cover letters and how to attract employers' attention.

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