9 Strategies to Stay Focused in a Job Search

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What are some strategies for staying focused in a job search?

To help you stay focused during the job search process, we asked HR/recruiting professionals and business leaders this question for their insights. From establishing a daily routine to setting measurable goals, there are several ways to stay engaged in the job search process.

Here are nine ways to stay focused while job searching:

1. Consider Your Job Hunt as a Job

The more time and effort you put into your job search, the better. I would suggest setting aside a time to schedule your job search and adhere to it everyday. That said, you will require time to recharge, just like you would with any other job. You need downtime with family, friends, and loved ones more than ever to be positive and stay focused during your job search.

Jon Schneider, Recruiterie

2. Build Professional Profiles

Creating profiles on LinkedIn and other professional networking sites is a successful job search technique. If possible, make the URL your name. When potential employers search for you online, profiles typically rank highly, giving recruiters, employers, and contacts a strong, favorable, and professional impression of you as a candidate worth considering.

Dan Reck, MATClinics

3. Set Measurable Goals

Setting small, attainable goals will keep you engaged in your job search, even if things aren’t moving as rapidly as you’d like. You can create daily or weekly goals, but they should be specific so that you can monitor your progress. By keeping you on track and making you feel productive, these goals will help you avoid frustration. For example, make a list of organizations you’d like to work for and then set a goal of researching and applying for one new job per day. If you’re looking to build your network, you can set a goal to meet one new person in your industry every week.

Stephanie Tanhueco, C9 Staff

4. Establish a Daily Routine

Searching for a job can feel all-consuming. Every moment you’re not applying for new jobs or connecting with strangers on LinkedIn can seem like time wasted. Stressing over your job search won’t help you, though. Get in a routine! Allocate a specific amount of time per day to work on your job search. Stay focused on your goals within that time, and don’t allow yourself to be distracted. When the time comes to stop, stop! Close the computer and get back to being human. Sticking to a routine will take the stress out of job seeking and ultimately give you more energy for a better pursuit. Stay fresh and keep your sights set on the right job versus any job.

Zachary McCarty, Qwick

5. Describe Your Dream Company

Before entering the job search, make sure to define your dream company and job description. What benefits do you want? What company values do you want your role to be defined by? Do you work best in small or large teams? This description will help guide you in the job search and narrow down your applications. Of course, every job won’t include all the aspects of your dream company. Nonetheless, it is good to know what you want and to ensure that your next job ticks most of your boxes!

Thylan Le, Markitors

6. Look for and Follow Leaders in Your Field

Too often, job seekers look for advice from friends or colleagues, when they should be aligning themselves and their career search with proven leaders in their industry. Think about it: the way an accountant would find a next-level job can differ vastly from practices used by top technology sales executives! Your professional network and notable authorities in your field can serve as mentors, telling you where to look, how to gain the right credentials, and how to identify and pursue optimum employers in your industry. Spend more time looking up these leaders on social media, listening to their advice, and reading their thought leadership content than you do on job boards, chasing down positions that might not align with your long-term goals.

Laura Smith-Proulx, An Expert Resume

7. Be Organized and Targeted

The job search is a marathon, not a sprint. You have to pace yourself and be prepared to go the distance without burning out. One strategy for staying focused in a job search is to maintain a list of companies you want to work for. This allows you to keep your research moving forward while still having time for activities that help you relax and recharge. In addition, when looking for jobs, it’s important to have a plan so you know what you’re going to do every day in order to achieve your goals. For example, you can create a weekly schedule that allows you to research three companies per day. This will give you the flexibility to take each week as it comes and take care of whatever life throws your way.

Ann Young, Fix The Photo

8. Keep a Job Search Spreadsheet

To stay organized and focused in your job search, it is important to create a spreadsheet. This will help retain your knowledge of where you have applied, if you were given the chance to interview, if you ever heard back from them, etc. Tracking your progress keeps you focused on the task ahead of finding a job. Plus, when you stay organized, you can find a pattern in what works and what does not.

Riley Burke, Ohza Mimosa

9. Apply for Relevant Jobs Only

If you often find yourself losing focus in your job hunt, you need to stop applying to every job opening you come across. Applying only to relevant job openings keeps you focused on the right jobs. The logic is simple — you need to save your time, efforts, and energy for the job you want. Applying to random jobs robs you of a lot of time and effort that often can force you to stay at your old job or get a low-paying job by giving up on your job hunt.

Lynda Fairly, NumLooker

How JobsInTheUS Can Help

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