Ah, the joys of spring. The sun finally emerges after its winter hibernation, the tree branches turn from brown to green and suddenly your nine- to 10-hour workday seems to fly right by.
Well, maybe not that last part. But springtime can be a productive work season, which often translates to new business relationships, lucrative contracts and the long-awaited completion of those backbreaking winter projects that seemed to drag on for months.
I would never recommend putting off a much-needed job search during the winter months, waiting for the tulips to bloom before taking action. That just wouldn’t be a good use of time. But now that spring has officially sprung, I suggest that you celebrate with some spring cleaning. In the career aspect of your life, that is.
Most people refuse to dust off the old resume until it’s absolutely necessary. In fact, many professionals resist job searching until one of two things happen: job loss or burnout.
If you are already at the end point (either jobless or exhausted from a lackluster or overbearing job), take a moment to give yourself a short break. Get outside for a brisk walk. Drive over to Whidbey Island. Go horseback riding. Do something — anything — to boost up your enthusiasm and soak in the springtime weather.
Then, as soon as you return, sit down at your desk and get started on your job hunt right away. Update your resume, research some local companies on the Internet and contact some recruiters or headhunters in your field. Step by step, transition yourself out of your current situation and into a rewarding role.
As you proceed, keep in mind that it’s not impossible to complete a superfast job search, but in general, job seeking is an activity that takes time. Be extra kind to yourself. Move forward with patience and persistence.
For those of you who are content with your present occupation, it’s still a good idea to shake off the cobwebs a bit. Stop for a moment and think about your future. Consider your dreams, and decide on some feasible short and long-term goals.
Then, go a step further and jot down a few recent accomplishments to bulk up your resume. Contact your old references and tell them what you’ve been up to. You might even pull the wrinkled interview suit out of the closet and drop it off at the dry cleaner. Just in case.
Scan the classified section of the newspaper and browse the Internet job boards. You never know — with a little bit of research, you could find a company that pays a higher salary, or cuts down your commute by half an hour in each direction.
The economy rises and falls, the seasons come and go. Take advantage of the splendid energy of springtime and start your job search now, before you actually need it. If you do, you’ll have a deeper understanding of the job market. You’ll feel more confident in your decisions. And you’ll be prepared for unexpected changes that may or may not come down the line.
Plus, you’ll know yourself just a little bit better. There’s nothing in the world that can benefit your career more than that.
Send your job search questions to Eve.GetAJob@gmail.com.