Cold weather, warm cider and time with your family serves as a great distraction from your seemingly endless hunt for a new job. However, this is not the time to slow down. Contrary to what you may be telling yourself, hiring doesn’t really slow down over the holidays and there’s a lot to gain from powering through with your job search into the New Year.
That’s not to say there aren’t challenges and distractions. Many people, including hiring managers, take time off in November and December. They might miss a call or pass on email for a few days while traveling and it can definitely slow you down. You may also be hesitant to interrupt the holiday-focused communication coming from so many businesses, but there are several ways to overcome these challenges.
- Take advantage of holiday gatherings to network. Sign up for holiday parties hosted by industry associations and ask to be the “plus one” to your friend’s company party. Use the holidays as an excuse to chat up new people and share your goals.
- Talk about yourself. You’ll likely see friends and family you haven’t seen in awhile. Use this time to talk about what you’ve been doing, your recent successes and your next steps. Share that you’re looking for a job or a new opportunity to learn. It might feel weird at first but everyone is eager to share his or her accomplishments and plans for the New Year.
- Use your time off. If you have some time off from your current job, use that time to edit your resume, scan for open jobs and set up meetings with new people.
- Follow up with holiday wishes. What better way to get noticed than by sending a holiday card or email? After meeting someone at a party or attending an interview, follow up with well wishes for the New Year. Then you can promise to follow up in January, which acknowledges they may not respond right away and gives you a reason to call on them again when the hustle and bustle of the holiday season is over.
This may seem like a lot of work when you could be enjoying time off with your family but there are real benefits to staying the course. For starters, you’ll be at the top of everyone’s list come January. You will have made an impression and hiring managers or recruiters won’t have to dig in too deeply to find your contact information.
Second, you will have shown your interest and dedication to the search. There won’t be any doubt how committed you are to the role or company.
Lastly, you will have paved the way for appropriate follow up emails. It’ll be easy to check in with hiring managers and they will remember who you are simply because they heard from you recently.
While you should definitely enjoy some time for yourself and your loved ones, don’t unplug from your job search over the next few weeks. Take this time to regroup, plan and make some connections. That way, you’ll hit the ground running in January.
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