Posted by Kat Griffin, Corporette
As the author of Corporette (we like to call it a fashion and lifestyle blog for overachieving chicks), I get a lot of requests from young women who are just starting in the working world â€” including a few who, unfortunately, havenâ€™t yet able to procure steady employment. Or who were laid off too early in their careers to find anything meaningful for that all important second job.
I know all too many young women who are going through a job hunt that is taking six months â€” or more.
So when Reader S wrote to suggest a post on that point, I hoped I (and my readers) could help her out with some solid advice.Â Hereâ€™s her question:
May I suggest a post on attorneys who, despite trying everything feasible, cannot find sustainable employment? I understand the whole â€œwork for freeâ€ thing, but those positions arenâ€™t available either because theyâ€™re going to law firm deferees. This $130,000 monkey on my back is getting unbearably heavy. Iâ€™m nearing my witâ€™s end, and maybe you and your readers will have some good advice.
I started with this advice:
Let everyone you know know that you are looking for a job.
I would say that â€œonce every three monthsâ€ is an acceptable time to revisit the subject. So if you havenâ€™t mentioned it to people in a while, bring it up again. Be upbeat about it, if possible â€” let them know how youâ€™ve been spending your time, what experience youâ€™ve gotten since you last spoke about it â€” and be clear about what they can do for you.
A great way to be clear is to let people know who youâ€™re looking to meet. For example: â€œIf you know any hiring partners, job recruiters or even industry leaders who may hear of job openings, please consider introducing me. Iâ€™d love to get their perspective on what I can be doing better in my job hunt.â€ Another question you might consider asking them: â€œWhat skills should I be trying to add to my resume?
Stay connected with your schoolâ€™s career office.
They may have a mailing list of jobs, networking events and more. Furthermore, they may be able to connect you with alumni who meet the description of the people youâ€™re trying to meet.
Attend as many networking events as you can.
Iâ€™ve recently attended a number of events where people have mentioned their job hunt â€” in their big introduction to the â€œgroup.â€ Iâ€™ve seen this at Meet Up events, City Bar committee meetings, and even â€œwomen in __(fill in the career)â€ luncheons. Itâ€™s a great way to get the word far and wide and make the most of your networking event.
If money is an issue (either because the event is expensive or because, well, events do add up), contact the organizer of the event. Let him or her know your situation, and see if theyâ€™ll either let you pay half price or do some work in exchange for attendance. Manning the registration tables is a great way to put faces to names, by the way.
You may also want to inquire about the eventâ€™s cancellation policy. They may have a policy (or be inspired to adopt one) whereby attendees who are canceling can â€œdonateâ€ their already-paid spot to you.
Follow up with people you meet at events â€” create relationships.
The real secret to job hunting is that jobs inevitably come from relationships, not job lists or things like that. Try to make friends with the organizers of the event if you can; not only will they hear of job openings but they may also be able to introduce you to people who are hiring.
I also came up with a few other, less-traditional ideas â€” and the post continues to attract comments (60+ great suggestions as of 12:30 on Thursday).Â Please feel free to come over and check out the rest of the post!