The first thing you need to do to get you dream job is to stop dreaming. Getting a new job means change, and change happens in two ways: it either happens to you, or because of you. In life the changes that happen to you are often the unpleasant kind, while the changes that happen because you decide to make a change are the ones that lead to success stories. A dream job doesn’t come to you from dreaming, it comes by making the changes needed to make it happen.
To start the ball rolling, you need to take inventory of both your own skill-set, and additionally, an inventory or survey of the job market. Your plan of action to increase your annual income by $10,000 a year will be quite different than the plan needed to increase your income by $100,000 a year. Be clear to yourself what it is you want from your next job. If it is $100,000 more a year, then you are going to have to make some big changes, move to a new location, go back to school and get new skills, or change your field entirely.
Decide What You Want
Make a clear decision on what you want, and what you are willing to take. It makes things so much easier. If you have a minimum salary that you are willing to accept, then that awkward moment when you are asked what you are looking for salary-wise becomes much less awkward. If there are things that you really want (a six week vacation, for example) and you have identified that as a must-have, you will find that your chances of securing the job that will grant you this are much higher. If you just ‘hope’ for a good benefits package then the package you will ultimately be offered is likely to be less than you were ‘hoping’ for. Be clear what you want, and accept no less.
Get a Book
The most reasonable woman in the world, Joanne Telfer, showed me the importance of seeking the advice of experts: when she needed to create a killer resume to secure the next job in her master-plan, and realizing she didn’t know how to do it, she bought a book. Actively seek out the advice of experts. No need to re-invent the wheel, unless you are a wheel engineer looking for a new wheel related job. The Internet, of course, can be a great resource as well as a book-store. Take some time to research the art of getting a new job. That research starts by finishing reading this article.
Edit Your Resume
The first place to start actively doing something to find a new job is your resume. It is more than just a list of what you have done. A resume tells the story of your progression through life. A resume reveals a lot about what you see as important, and what you don’t. In addition to listing your skills and experience, a resume shows potential employers a great deal about your commitment level, your ambition, and your personality. All resumes are edited and therefore what you choose to leave on your resume and what you choose to leave out can be just as revealing as the information itself. A resume that lists every three week summer job you had throughout your whole life tells a different story than the resume that leaves out large chunks of time and only lists major work experiences. What story do you want to tell? Asking for feedback from colleagues or experts in the field can be invaluable. Do not be too proud to ask for help if you need it. It’s not about doing it without anybody’s help, it’s about getting the job.
Do It Now
So, you have reached the end of this article. The best time to start looking for a new job is now, not tomorrow. Tomorrow will be a terrible day. Start working toward changing your life now.
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