I recently had a conversation with a friend, who graduated not too long ago but is already well established in his career path, about the nature of searching for your first entry-level job. It’s quite a daunting process, as I’m sure many of you know. Even if you’re not looking for your first big-kid job, perhaps you’re looking to change industries or advance into a higher position in your field. Whatever your situation may be, my friend’s job search advice will be able to offer you a hand in finding positions you’d like to apply for:
Spend some quality time simply reading job descriptions. If you don’t know exactly what your next position will look like, but have a vague idea, that is enough to get started! A great next step is to visit a job board and read the posted job ads listed for the industry you are targeting. For example, Craigslist has a Sales/Business Development category that lists job ads for everything from insurance representatives and staffing account managers to marketing coordinators. I’d be willing to bet that you’ll probably come across a few titles that are new to you but describe exactly the kind of position you’re looking for.
Not every sales job has ‘sales’ in the title. If you know you want to work in a specific industry, that’s great. But don’t limit your search to only job positions that contain that industry keyword in the position title. For example, a financial advisor makes cold calls, meets with clients over happy hour, and networks through their family and friends in order to sell a bank’s products and services. Although the title doesn’t have ‘sales’ in it, it sure sounds like a sales position to me. Again, this is why you need to spend some time researching and perusing through job descriptions.
Five minutes a day keeps unemployment away. Job searching does not have to be as intimidating as you think. If you just spend five minutes a day looking through job advertisements and company career pages, you’ll be well on your way to having both a better idea of what you’re looking for and also a specific list of positions that you’d like to apply for. Perhaps set aside an hour or two every weekend to then send these applications out. Your job search will become much more bearable if you break it up like this.
Note: Thank you to my anonymous friend for the helpful job search tips and information contained in this blog post.