Heard it over and over again… “No one is hiring during the final weeks of the year so might as well wait until mid-January to get things rolling again.” Though there may be a sliver of reality to the quote, this is not the season to be “sittin’ on a simmer.”
No doubt you’re asking what does “sittin’ on a simmer” mean. Here’s a quick reality check and what you need to do NOW to get off the back-burner and back into action.
You are “sittin’ on a simmer” if you:
- Begin your morning looking for excuses NOT to begin your morning (attitude leads the charge, positive or negative)
- Remain in your pajamas, slumbering around the house waiting for something to happen
- Have yet to perform industry research and uncovering trends which may be helpful to your career advancement (and during interviews)
- Have not conducted any professional development (online) courseware
- Allow your cover letter, resume, and references to collect dust (not updating value-added accomplishments)
- Refuse to engage in networking events designed to highlight and share your KSA’s to potential contacts
- Make a conscious decision to put your career on simmer until season’s end (what the heck… what’s another week of feeling sorry for myself?)
Enough of the sittin’, time to take a stand in your professional career by:
- Making a commitment to yourself (an affirmation by any other name) that today IS THE DAY for action (I will NO LONGER play the victim… I am valuable and nothing or no one will distract me from achieving my goal)
- Researching companies of interest (go to the library if you are without Internet access), examine their mission statement, products, competitors, key players, and New Year goals (this is also where LinkedIn can become your ace in the hole)
- Reviewing accomplishments over the past 12 months and developing stories behind each accomplishment (placing you at the advantage during the interview process as this adds confirmation and credibility—not to mention confidence). This is where the STAR format comes in handy:
- Situation: What was going that required attention; was money or labor being wasted?
- Task: What needed to be done and what would have happened if nothing had been done?
- Action: What was your involvement; did you come up with a time-saving process or a way to improve customer satisfaction?
- Result: What happened as a result of your direct (or indirect) involvement? How much money did your suggestion save? Did ratings go up?
- Committing to attend a minimum of two networking events (and make sure you bring a confident/winning attitude as well as a value-laden elevator speech)
- Reviewing and updating all career documents (online profiles included). This means taking advantage of any company research, industry trends, and your STAR stories.
- When it comes to reviewing and updating documents, it may be in your best interest to have a professional resume writer review your material and offer suggestions for improvement. The fee is industry-reasonable while the rewards are potentially high. On this note, our writers conduct this service remotely to clients all across the globe. If you go this route (with us or another experienced career management company), make sure you feel comfortable with the secured professional offering this service. Rates for a formal written review and coach consultation ranges between $250 and $500, depending upon which company you select.
Securing a dream position during the month of December can be challenging, but this is the season of dreams coming true. To be blunt, the final weeks of the year are an ideal time to give your career documents a holiday workout.
Do yourself a favor, stop sittin’ on a simmer and commit to making 2015 a year of fulfillment. I’m simply asking you to devote TWO hours a day, adding up to ten hours of career stretching weekly. If this sounds like I’m asking too much from you… you are stuck on a simmer and can’t get up!
Hoping your career journey is an exciting and rewarding one.
For those interested in a professional career document review/coaching session, securing cutting-edge career focused material, or other professional employment empowerment services, visit www.edu-cs.com or www.CareerBreakOut.com or contact me directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Danny Huffman, MA, CEIP, CPRW, CPCC
Education Career Services: www.edu-cs.com
Career Break Out: www.CareerBreakOut.com
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