Step 1: Narrow the job searchApplying for all kinds of jobs can be counterproductive and dilute your job search.
It can also lead to frustration because there's no focus on any one specific job or industry. Char was looking at positions in the casino industry and possibly in her previous field as a therapist.
Since she needs to find a position relatively soon, it's probably unproductive to look in these areas if her recent work experience isn't easily transferable.
Instead of applying to a variety of jobs, it would be more effective for Char to focus on her skills that can be transferred to other industries.
For instance, her sales experience has been honed over many years as a Realtor. She should look at positions where she can use those sales skills, which will open up her options across the board.
Career help in 3 steps
- Narrow job search.
- Approach contacts about possible opportunities.
- Join networking groups online.
: Cultivate contacts by using social media
She would prefer a new job to provide benefits and not be 100 percent commission-based, so she should be sure to look at the job requirements and screen out those sales positions that are not a fit for her needs.
Step 2: Approach contacts about opportunitiesChar hasn't done a lot of networking within her geographic area or outside her circle. She should go to more business meetings, not specifically to get leads but to meet people and build relationships.
She can also approach her current contacts and ask about sales positions that they might be aware of. Once again, she doesn't have to ask them for leads but just make them aware that she's open to hearing about opportunities they may know about and want to share.
Step 3: Join networking groups onlineIt would be good for Char to join networking groups online as well.
For instance, if she joins LinkedIn.com, she can meet professionals from all over the world who can offer support and advice. In addition, there are job ads listed there and groups where people in various fields can connect.
Using social media to connect with sales and marketing professionals will increase her network of contacts and help her to find out about positions before they're posted on job boards.
Networking is the best way to find a position. And, since Char is already an outgoing person with sales experience, she should do very well in making new connections and gathering leads for her new career path.
Prepared by career transition coach Deborah A. Bailey of Deb Bailey Career and Life Coaching.
Next: Career makeover: Mike Baker