Ready to Ring in the New Year with a New Job?

Reflection and resolution are oft-repeated words regarding this time of year. As the countdown begins on the final days of December, many reflect on their previous months and focus tends to shift towards resolutions to do (or refrain from doing) in Q1.

If one of your New Year’s resolutions is to reenter the job market, there are several other “re” words you can do to recharge your search when it resumes in January. Before the ball drops on 2018 we recommend you:

  1. Review, revise and reorganize your resume and portfolio. The first requirement of any job search is to have a resume which accurately reflects your experience(s) and is free of grammatical mistakes. Make any updates needed to your resume and/or portfolio and then have someone else – ideally someone already in the field you want to join – review them for grammar mistakes and typos.
  1. Revamp your LinkedIn presence. There are two key components to remember for a successful revamp. First, make sure you do the following in your profile:
  • Complete all sections.
  • Make the most of your tagline by using keywords and descriptors of yourself instead of your current job title.
  • Make certain your resume and LinkedIn job history match.
  • Embed interesting media elements for reader engagement.
  • Get recommendations and endorsements from other members.
  • Recruit someone to review it afterwards.

Once your profile is ready, the second key component for LinkedIn is to be sure you re-engage regularly. LinkedIn not only allows those viewing your profile to see how active (or not) you have been on the site, it weighs your activity level. To increase your profile views, regularly update your status (quickly done by linking to interesting articles or event info pages). Return other members’ attempts at engagement and continue to actively re-engage with your groups.

Reengaging on LinkedIn is also a great way to achieve the next recommendation:

  1. Reconnect with references and referralsUse the holidays to reconnect with old friends and colleaguesand with organizations you’re passionate about. These may prove to be your best references and referral sources for open positions.  They are also ideal to recruit for interview practice (the stronger your speaking skills, the stronger your performance in interviews).
Before you meet with those with whom you’ve reconnected, be sure to:
  1. Refresh your appearance and your wardrobeRanking second (behind communication skills) in qualities associated with professionalism, appearance – for better or worse – can reinforce perception of your skills by prospective employers. Feeling confident in your appearance and comfortable in your attire will show in the first look potential employers get of you. Invest in a well-fitting interview suit and other attire appropriate for your chosen field. A change to your hair cut or color can quickly rejuvenate you.
Once your look is revitalized, you’re ready to:
  1. Replenish your photographsA photograph on your profile can increase your number of views on LinkedIn by 40%. Have an updated photo taken. It doesn’t have to be taken by a professional photographer. It just needs to be taken in a professional setting.
  1. Recon and Repair online information. Google yourself. If your reconnaissance mission returns anything concerning, attempt to get it removed. Check your privacy settings on social media. While you want to retain at least some publicly available presence, you can limit each post to only relevant audiences.

Before the clock strikes midnight on December 31 you can be ready to ring in the New Year reaching out for new opportunities. This holiday season, give yourself the gift of being able to quickly restart your job search when the market resumes in January.