This is a wonderful time of the year to relax, recharge and refocus before the new year begins. It’s also an ideal time for family and friends to gather to catch up, and for you to reflect and begin to focus on your 2017 goals, particularly as they relate to your career. Whether you’re employed and searching for a new job or unemployed and seeking a job, now is the perfect time to develop your execution plan. Here are a few pointers to help you get focused and stay ahead in your job search.
Reach out to others. If you’re in the midst of searching for a new job, use this time to connect and network. I meet with friends I’ve not seen in a while to hear about what happened to them throughout the year. So schedule time to chat over coffee (or cider) with people in your network and let them know you’re looking — and what you’re looking for. They may have some potential leads or know someone you can talk to.
Update your LinkedIn profile. LinkedIn has become a great go-to for employers not only to post job opportunities but also to learn about you. If they find that your skills match what they are looking for, they may reach out to you. So make sure you have an updated profile picture, a comprehensive list of your skills, professional affiliations, accomplishments, courses and things you are passionate about, and the key attributes you have that employers may be seeking.
Review, tweak or update your résumé. Having this completed when the new year arrives will allow you to be ready when employers post new jobs early next year. During your coffee catch-up sessions with friends, perhaps have them review your résumé to make sure it reads well and accurately conveys your skills and experience. You can also have your résumé reviewed free by an expert at AARP’s Online Career Fair (11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Jan. 26). These experts can provide tips on how to get your résumé elevated to the “interested” pile. And recruiters from employers such as Lord & Taylor, Massage Envy, Hilton and Goodwill, to name a few, will be on hand at the fair to chat about available opportunities.
Check out AARP’s Employer Pledge Program. It features job opportunities from employers seeking experienced candidates. Others to consider include Career Builder, Indeed, Simply Hired and Monster. Have your résumé(s) updated and handy so you’ll ready in the event you find a job opportunity of interest. To prepare, go to www.aarp.org/workresources for help with creating résumés, cover letters and more. And visit the AARP Academy to brush up on skills you may need for your new or current job.
Don’t wait until January to get ready. There aren’t many days left in 2016. The new year will present new opportunities, and you want to be prepared. Visit www.aarp.org/work for great tips on how to land your next gig and register now for AARP’s Online Career Fair.
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