What does a high-unemployment job market look like? For instance, with the huge increase in unemployment claims and an official unemployment rate close to 15%*, it looks grim. You could justify worrying about your prospects if you’re out of work or viewing it as a possibility.
I won’t offer a glib or sugar-coated view of the job market you’re seeing. It presents a daunting picture even to an optimist like me. (There’s a reason I label myself a “realistic optimist.”) However, I see no value in adopting a fatalistic outlook—what I call a “doom and gloom” mentality.
Can job seekers take practical steps to improve their odds in favor of job search success, even in today’s disturbed world? I believe the answer is yes.
An esteemed colleague, Jay Block, recently wrote a short post that relates to this challenge. His post, “Securing a Job in a 20%+ Unemployment Job Market,” lays it on the line and then offers a practical approach to make progress.
Jay begins by stating bluntly that today’s job seekers have to share their value with pinpoint accuracy to get–and stay–in the game. In other words, generalized or haphazard approaches won’t work. You need to share employer value clearly centered on your target job.
On the other hand, you can focus on a few key steps to put you in contention for targeted jobs. Briefly, Jay recommends the following:
I have a few of my own ideas to add to Jay’s list:
One last tip: Be prepared to move quickly when you spot an opportunity or when one somehow finds you. To modify an old saying: “He who hesitates is last”! As a result, you could miss the chance at the job you want. Your success might depend on making decisive moves at the right time.
* According to Fortune magazine, the real rate is closer to 24%.
P.S. I can help you develop and share your value message with potential employers. Give me a call (508-263-9454) or shoot an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
(Part 2 of 2 on employment in the New Normal–See Part 1 here.)