Searching for a new job at the end of the year often adds anxiety to an already anxiety-riddled process.
After all, the holidays are distracting for both job seekers and hiring managers. Most people presume little is actually accomplished in the workplace in the month of December. As a result, many job seekers find themselves pulling back, which is exactly the wrong thing to do.
If you’re job searching as the holidays approach, here are a few strategies to keep you moving forward.
Stick to your routine
Don’t let the end-of-year hubbub stop you from doing what needs to be done. Continue your job search and tapping your network. Remember that business still carries on this time of year, and positions still need to be filled. While others pause their job seeking activities, keep your routine in place and you’ll have less competition!
Realize it may take longer (but not always)
It’s true that people tend to take time off at the holidays, so recognize that it may take longer to get responses from recruiters and hiring managers. However, this isn’t always the case. Some organizations have specific needs that must be handled before year end (for budgeting reasons and others). As a result, you may find things actually move faster for some positions.
Leverage holiday gatherings
This time of year offers a whole host of additional networking opportunities. Holiday parties are perfect for reconnecting with friends, family members, and professional associates who may be able to facilitate useful introductions and provide guidance for your job search. In a fun and festive environment, you can share your aspirations for 2017 and ask for support. People always tend to be in the giving mood around the holidays, so take advantage!
Use downtime wisely
Should you find yourself with additional downtime, use it. Take an online course to expand your professional skillset, or read a book that inspires your personal growth. Of course, spending a little quality time with loved ones can also be a re-energizing strategy. Remember that, if all goes according to plan, in the new year you’ll have a new job vying for your attention, so appreciate this time while you have it.
Whatever you do, don’t simply walk away from your job search during the holidays. There are things to be done—and opportunities to be seized—and shutting down operations isn’t a smart strategy.