If you see your co-workers opt for a change of job, do they know something you don’t? It could be internal or external events to cause co-workers to leave. You may want to talk to them to find out why. Fair or not, if you’re 45 years or older hiring managers may assume you are less technologically up to date. Make sure you emphasize your technical competence on your resume and during an interview. Overemphasis is better than underemphasis.
The pandemic changed the way work is done, employees are treated, and available job opportunities. Research and planning are needed to make sure your decision is the right one. Here are a few:
- Request to see your personnel file through human resources. Tell them you want to make sure their information is consistent with your information (like beneficiaries, performance appraisals, and so on). Make sure there are no surprises.
- Audit your social media sites for accuracy. Make sure it’s what you want published.
- You should have another job lined up before resigning, or have 6 months or more in reserve funding. The average range of searches with my clients have been 26 days to 8 months depending on many factors. Some clients found they are currently in the best position of all and stay put. A quiet search is worth the time and effort to find out.
- Sort out your priorities. I ask my clients to identify their “must haves”, “nice to haves”, and “avoids” when outlining a potential change. It forces them to think through their primary focus.
- Define your most transferable skills, knowledge or abilities. What makes you unique and of value to a potential employer? It must be a talent that few others in your profession can do and what employers are looking for in a candidate. Example: Certified cost accountants who can reduce the cost of doing business are more sought after than an accountant.
- Research potential employers who are in need of your expertise. Use websites that set up an alert system, then apply quickly. Companies will respond to applicants who fit their profile.
- Modify your resume to match the requirements of the position description. The first 5 items on the position description are the most important. Use the same words on your resume that’s on the position description.
- Start your networking early. Never say, “I’m looking for another job, can you help me?”. Rather, say you’re “testing the market” and want to know what’s happening in their industry. People will talk easily about their industry and eventually discuss their company and openings.
- Make sure potential companies have a compatible culture and operating styles with yours. Pay for performance versus length of service? Collaborative versus competitive? Short-term or long-term focused? Promotion from within or not?
- And lastly, don’t compromise your priority list from the “must haves”.
Change is in the air. Stay aware and prepared. You may currently be in the best job possible, but verify that assumption.
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