Friday, July 9, 2010

The Process and Beauty of Employment

What’s up KD!! It’s been a while since I have been able to write you. There has been a lot going on in the life. So much that – you are getting a double feature this time around! I’m going to write this blog – and am I’m going to work to get a 2nd one out to you this month.

This blog is about my job search. I just finished searching for a job in the field of Education, as I work in Housing in the University setting. My new position is an Assistant Director of Residence Life for Southern Illinois University Carbondale. In this role, I am responsible for supervising an environment that houses 1600 students. It’s going to be a great fit – I have already enjoyed my first week here.

For those of you that are looking for a new position, or a position in general, here are a few tips that I gathered during my experience that were really helpful .

  • Looking for a new job is a job!

Between interviewing, looking for positions, networking, following up on leads, and travelling – looking for a job became my 2nd job. It took a lot of time, dedication, and follow up to make it happen. Furthermore, you need to have multiple plans for finding a position. I have degrees in education, business, and computer science, and created plans for finding positions all three areas. If you want to move up, in, or on, you need to put time and effort into finding a position. If you are not spending 15-20 hours a week looking, then you are not really trying.

  • Use your contacts and networks

This is often a repeated mantra in KD, but it is so true. I got my current position, in part, because I knew the people that I was interviewing with. It helped that I’m competent, and have a great attitude, but it started because I knew the people well. If you are not looking for a job, spend the time investing in meeting and getting to know others in your field. If you are looking for a job, use those contacts that you have gathered over time to figure out how to get information about positions that might be coming open soon.

  • Make sure your personal brand is strong!

This is a term from my marketing course – but it means that you need to make sure that you have a good reputation throughout the interview process. You need to make sure that you look good in all forms – paper, speech, and in-person. It is a great idea to have others review your resume and/or do a mock interview with you. For this, the KD Graduate Career Services is a great help. Dave Thompson, and his staff, did a great job in helping me get ready for my search.

  • Be patient

It is widely believed that when you are looking for a promotion, you need to give 3-6 months to find a position. This is an extremely long time. My job search process started last November, when I concretely decided to find a new position, and finished in June when I accepted the position that I just started. That is 8 months!! Therefore, you have to understand that this is a process, which will take time to happen.

Well, I hope that’s helpful KD! Until next time, I’ll catch you later!!

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