Top Ten Tips for Getting a New Gig in 2009


Despite all the bad news of 2008, it’s hard to be pessimistic at the start of a new year. The calendar is white and fresh, the projects not too far behind. And with all the upheaval in the world today, maybe change really means opportunity. There are all kinds of businesses that are in dire need of your particular talents and experience – right now!

Here are a few tips to help you land a dream job this year:

1. Commit Yourself
January is in and gone before you know it. Take the time to do some long range planning, then break big goals down into manageable steps.

2. Don’t Assume No One is Hiring
In fact, don’t assume anything. Ask, ask, ask. And read. Make it your mission to learn everything you can about your local and virtual job markets.

3. Be Consistent
Remember every day you look is one day closer to finding that new job. If you currently have a job, set an amount of time that you will spend every day or every week on your job search. If you are unemployed – you just found yourself a new job. Looking for work is your new ten hour a day vocation.

4. Stay Optimistic
Enjoy the down time. It won’t last forever. Do affirmations, read self-help, practice yoga, consult your spiritual advisor – whatever it takes to maintain a positive attitude. Seriously, you cannot fake good vibes. Employers do not want any downers on the team, so work at not being one.

5. Use College Resources
Take advantage of your former college’s career services office. Get back in the loop. You never know who you’ll meet or what you’ll learn.

6. Super-size Your Networking
Use social gatherings like Super Bowl parties to increase your networking opportunities or to hone your social skills. Even if you’re just hanging with the the old gang, make it a point to learn something new about each of your friends.

7. Get Educated
If you’ve been considering getting another degree, start the process now now. There are many graduate programs that may allow you to attend while you are awaiting official admission especially if you already have a graduate degree or are an alumni. Online degrees are a great option for many people.

8. Serve Your Community
Volunteering is a wonderful way to meet like minded people and make valuable business contacts as well. It’s also just a great reality check when you start feeling sorry for yourself to serve those less fortunate.

9. Dive Into Social Networking
Here’s the thing – you can either curl up and wish things were the way they used to be and complain about all this social networking nonesense, or you can get in the game. Sure there’s a learning curve, but this is the new normal. Ignore it at your employment peril. Social networking makes it easier to reconnect with former co-workers and friends. (It’s scary, but I talk to some of my neighbors more on Facebook now than in the street. It’s cold outside after all….)

10. Update Your Resume
When it comes to job hunting, preparation is everything. Consider creating multiple versions if you have several different areas of expertise.

Challenging times call for creative measures and positive attitudes! Your dream job awaits, but you’ll have to work for it.

Image Credit: chuckp, Flickr

Written by Drea Knufken

Currently, I create and execute content- and PR strategies for clients, including thought leadership and messaging. I also ghostwrite and produce press releases, white papers, case studies and other collateral.