Start off the new year the right way with these daily job-search tips.
This year may be coming to a close, but there's still time to set yourself up for job-search success in the new year. With just a few small tasks, you can take advantage of the holidays and keep your career moving forward, even while you celebrate the holidays. Not sure how? We've created a list of steps you can take to advance your job search as you enter the new year. Complete one of these steps each day and you'll start off 2018 armed and ready to take on the professional world.
Practice your elevator pitch on family members
Instead of dreading your relatives' questions about your career or ongoing job search, try taking advantage of the situation to practice your elevator pitch. In 30 seconds or less, explain to your relatives how you're “currently exploring job opportunities in [industry] that would allow me to leverage my [skills] and [education or other professional development efforts].”
Then, follow up this statement by asking your loved ones if they know anyone who works in the industry, at the company, or within the field you're interested in. You're not asking about job opportunities — that is, unless one of your relatives is in the unique position to provide that type of information. Rather, you're looking for introductions to people in their network with whom you can set up informational interviews.
Send season's greetings to your professional network
The holidays are a great time to reconnect with your professional network. Whether it's with an email, an e-card, or a traditional card, wish your contacts a very “Happy New Year!” in a way that will benefit your job-search efforts. Your message can be adapted for networking connections and those you've met while interviewing for positions, in addition to your friends and family. Use this opportunity to update your professional networking contacts on what you've been doing with regards to your job search, and, if you're addressing someone at a company you want to work at, restate your interest in working at their organization, should the right position open in the future.
Get a free resume review
If you've decided to take a break from the job search during the holiday season, you're not alone. However, instead of completely abandoning your job search, there are a few small things you can do during this lull that can make a big difference when you ramp up your efforts in January. Start by getting a free resume review from a professional resume-writing service like TopResume so you know where you stand and how much work you may need to do to get your resume in shape for a serious job hunt.
Related: 5 Signs You Need a Professional Resume Review
Invest in your career success
If your New Year's resolutions include finding a new job, changing careers, or finally getting that promotion at work, consider signing up for a class in the new year that will help you build the skills you need to make that career resolution a reality. I recently shared 12 affordable online courses with Business Insider that will help you advance your career.
If you have a specific skill or tool in mind that you'd like to master, check out sites like Udemy, Envato Tuts+, General Assembly, Coursera, edX, GoSkills, Lynda.com, and SkillShare, to name a few, to find out if there's a way for you to develop those skills on your own time.
Increase your industry know-how with a podcast
Will you be stuck in a car, on a train, or some other means of transportation while traveling for the holidays? Turn that downtime into an opportunity to increase your knowledge and boost your motivation. Listen to a podcast or TED Talk from an expert in your industry or a motivational speaker that will pump you up for the new year ahead!
Related: 5 Must-Watch Motivational TED Talks
Exchange that ugly sweater for something useful for your career
Instead of regifting that unwanted present, see if you can exchange it for something that can benefit your career. From briefcases to interview outfits, there are a number of holiday presents available that can help you advance you reach your career goals in the new year. And, if you have any relatives asking for last-minute gift ideas, send them this list of gift ideas for job seekers. I especially love the collection of stress-relief presents included in this roundup.
Store your resume in the cloud
If a recruiter or hiring manager asks for your resume, don't make them wait until you're in front of a computer to reply. Save a copy of your professional resume and any other important job-search documents on a site like Dropbox, iCloud, Box, or Google Docs and download their app to your phone so you can bring your files anywhere and easily share them while on the go.
Build — or update — your brag book
Before the new year is upon us, take stock of everything you did and achieved over the past 365 days. Then, pull out your brag book and log your accomplishments. If you haven't taken the time to create a brag book in the past, now's your chance. Not only will this document help you prepare for your upcoming performance review, but it's also an incredibly valuable file to have, should you decide to ask for a raise or explore new job opportunities. Click on the following link to learn how to create a brag book for your career.
Bonus career tip: Stay in the know
Whether you're happily employed or itching to find something new, it's important to keep a pulse on the job market and the latest job-search best practices. Stay in the know by signing up for TopResume's free weekly newsletter and following us on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram so you're constantly picking up fresh job-search tips and career help to keep your career moving in the right direction.
Click on the following link to access more career advice.
Find out if your resume is ready for the job hunt. Request a free resume review today!