New Year, new direction.

How to get the new job you want. It’s all about being selective, connected, persuasive and never-say-die.

How to get off on the right foot? First off, you need to get your CV up to date, polished and in pristine condition to sell you effectively. Amy Gallo wrote a great piece recently on how to write a resume that stands out.

Before you start sending your CV out to numerous recruitment agencies and job boards, stop and think. Who do I want to work for? Write a list of your target organisations. Consider the sector(s) you wish to be working in. Go directly to these organisations websites and search their career pages. If you can’t see a suitable job on their website, call up the recruitment team and ask them. Even better, ask if you can send them your CV on a speculative basis – just in case they might be hiring people like you in the coming months.

Consider your network. Who do you know who might be able to help you – or – put you in touch with someone who can? Contact key individuals, let them know you are looking for a new role and give them a brief overview of you and what you can offer (AKA your elevator pitch).

Next, consider which recruitment agencies and job boards will best serve you. Don’t waste hours searching through endless job listings on Monster.com or Reed. Use your time wisely and select two or three job boards that specialise in your chosen sector. Also include LinkedIn – it’s increasingly used by recruiters and agencies alike. Finally, decide upon one or two recruitment agencies or search firms that are experts in your chosen field. Try and build a relationship with one of their consultants, and tell them you are only working with them and one other. This will help to build commitment and incentivise them to help you find a role.

Keep actively working on each of these – like exercising, you are more likely to see results quickly if your job search activity is regular and frequent. You should be checking in with each of your job search sources at least twice a week.

It’s critical to use the right channels to find your new job. You need to be targeted and proactive. If you approach your job search in a haphazard fashion, it will be like going shopping in the sales. You go out looking for a new pair of jeans and come back with a jumper that doesn’t fit properly. Be selective, driven and focused. No-one will come knocking at your door offering you your dream job. It’s your career. It’s down to you to drive it.

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