I take a holistic approach to job hunting. It's not just the filling out the applications and interviews that get you a job - it's about getting in the right mindset to get a job.
Half the battle is working out what you're after. The other half of the battle is knowing what you want. So it's at this time of proceedings that get on with what I call the list. When I work with people on their CVs I ask them to do this as well. It helps you get your ducks in a row.
So - the questions on the list:
- What do you like to do?
- What are you good at?
- What would you like to try?
- What do you never want to do again?
- What are your needs from a job?
It's best if you put these on a large piece of paper and work on these over a weekend - and really get into what it is you want out of your next role. It's grounding and it helps you put out to the universe what it is you want.
So here's my shortened answers to the questions. Part of my cold wet weekend will be making a go of this.
What do I like to do?
Write, create, lots of things at the same time, work with people, creative problem solving, making things happen, training, travelling, getting groups of people to work together, networking, brainstorming, working as a part of a team, being responsible for things, working to deadlines, working for a cause, learning new stuff, cleaning up messes....
What am I good at?
Writing, problem solving, training, working in teams, seeing the big picture, navigating corporations, gaining people's trust, navigating team structures, working out what makes people tick, seeing the other sides of things, seeing the good, planning, working to deadlines, working with numbers, reconciling stuff, keeping things running, learning new stuff, cleaning up messes...
What would I like to try?
Lion taming, managing people, starting a project from the start (not just near the end when I normally come in to do the clean up), business analysis, working on different sites, working in another country......
What do I not want to do again?
Reconcile shite, work for bad managers, go back to one or two companies (wont way which), work in the back office of a bank, work the phones (call centres - no way ever again), work with the general public, work more than a ten hour day regularly, systems testing...
What do I want/need from a job?
Eight hour day, varied, large multinational / national company (I don't work for small companies - I'm not a good fit), my current day rate +$50 a day (I haven't had a pay rise in four years), inner city, some travel would be nice, work as part of a cohesive team, relaxed corporate culture, 6-month plus contract, great workmates, some creative thinking required, lots of writing, supportive management...
Got some work to do on this, but it's a start.
This has worked in the past. Touch wood it will work again.