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Looking for a job in a (sort of) post Covid world.

As an experienced (old) career coach and recruiter I’ve seen a few downturns and shocks to the job market in my time; the dotcom bubble, Y2K and the GFC all spring to mind. They all pale into significance in comparison to the last year which has seen seismic and irreversible changes to the market.

As we enter a new, flexible and part virtual world it’s worth reminding yourself that the fundamentals of job hunting remain the same. Whilst the market is certainly “noisy’ there’s no doubt the situation here in New Zealand is far from bleak. SEEK have reported record job postings in March and April and the average response levels to a job ad are definitely on the wane. Now is a good time to be looking for a new role, or at least considering a career move. Key is to success is being able to articulate your core proposition, your key themes, your sales pitch.

I work with a broad and diverse group of coaching clients from just about every discipline and industry imaginable. From ‘second-jobbers’, through junior / middle management and into the heady heights of GMS, Directors and CEOs. The process is broadly the same. Can they sell themselves effectively and succinctly to a range of audiences. Can they answer the question “Tell me about yourself?” in an interview situation.

Once you have nailed your core proposition it is time to rebuild your story from top-line elevator pitch, through the CV and into your LinkedIn profile. Your aim is to build a well evidenced and layered story that you can expand on during the interview, whether that be in person, over the phone, online or recorded video.

So now you are ready to press go, to test the market, to apply for that dream job. What you now need is a proactive and structured plan of attack. There are only three ways to find a job; advertisements, recruitment agencies and networks. The first two avenues are basically reactive and there is only so much you can do to influence the outcome. Networks (both direct and indirect) are where you can really make a difference and increase your chances of success. A random sample of recent coaching assignments clearly evidences proactive networking as being the most common method of securing a role. Use LinkedIn to the max – it’s a hugely useful tool when it comes to networks, knowledge, raising your profile and all round up-skilling.

Finally, make sure you have some goals in place. What are you looking to achieve in your next role. Is it a stepping stone to something else, something bigger, something different. If you don’t have a clear plan in place it’s very easy to find yourself back on the market in 6 months’ time.

What else? Reach out for support where necessary. I’m clearly biased but there is a lot to be said for seeking an objective opinion from a third party who can help you identify what you want to do, what you are good at doing, what you want to do next and how you are going to get there.


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