New year, new job? You can take the next step in your career or look for a better job at any time, though there’s something about a brand-new year that inspires us to make positive changes in our lives and seek out new year’s resolution ideas.
If you’re planning to run a new year job search, check out these 10 new year’s resolutions for job seekers. Whether you choose one or aspire to complete them all, each of these ideas are highly beneficial AND realistically achievable.
First on our list of new year’s resolutions for job seekers might not be the most fun task, but it’s a must. In today’s candidate-driven market, you probably know someone who landed a great job just by word of mouth or simply being in the right place at the right time. Regardless of the talent shortage we’re currently experiencing, you have to have an up-to-date resume on hand. Update and polish yours as the #1 step in your new year job search – it’ll be well worth the time.
Being a lifelong learner is a highly attractive trait in any industry, especially considering the fast pace in which things change in today’s world. There are thousands of free or low-cost courses online in countless subjects that you can take advantage of. Or, look into classes at your local community college to brush up on an old skill or learn a new one.
We’ve all heard that it’s not what you know, but who you know that will land you a job. In other words, a strong network is vital and constantly adding to it is key. You can be strategic about who you meet, but also keep in mind that you really never know who might be a valuable connection (your mailperson might be old friends with the CEO at your dream company, for instance).
Are there certain companies you’d love to work for? Do you dream of joining the team at an organization whose core values align perfectly with yours? Consider making a list of target companies and researching them as one of your new year’s resolution ideas. Check out their career pages and subscribe to job alerts if available. Find out if you know anyone who currently works there and schedule informational interviews with them (more on that below).
An informational interview is an informal meeting between you and someone who works at your target company, has a position that’s similar to the one you’re interested in, and/or is a prominent influencer in your field, for example. Your purpose isn’t to ask for a job – instead, you’re interviewing them for valuable insights and advice (and you’ll likely find most people are more than happy to share with you).
Interviewing is a skill, but it’s not something we do often enough to really master. Even if you don’t have interviews lined up yet, practice answering common interview questions with your spouse, mom, best friend – anyone who will give you candid advice and constructive feedback.
If you’re open to changing careers, carefully consider the transferable skills you have to offer and research positions in other industries. For example, a talented sales person might think about getting into recruiting. An experienced school administrator might want to explore HR leadership positions. Perhaps in 2019, “new year, new me” will be “new year, new job, new field!”
If you haven’t looked for a new job in a while, dig out your business casual attire to ensure you have appropriate outfits for interviews. Donate what doesn’t fit or is out of style, treat yourself to a shopping trip for new pieces, and/or seek out a clothing swap to refresh your wardrobe.
What does exercising have to do with a new year job search? Physical health makes an enormous impact on mental health, and the right mindset is essential if you want to succeed in the arduous and often disappointing process of finding a new job. You’ll likely spend most of your job search sitting in front of a computer or on your phone as well, so take frequent breaks and get moving!
Last in our collection of new year’s resolutions for job seekers is to vow to take care of yourself! You want to perform at your best and project success, confidence, and resourcefulness to prospective employers. This is basically impossible to do if your tank is empty. Whether it be reading a book, tending to your garden, playing with your kids, painting a picture, or exercising as suggested in #9, set time aside to refuel.