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Don’t worry, I won’t be writing about the economics of supply and demand in today’s job market. This article may not be for you if you lucked out on the job lottery and picked a high demand skill or if you are super popular in the community and everyone wants you to work for them. And if you have rich parents who grew up during the Nixon Administration, maybe finding work is not an issue.

The reality is that not everyone can say that they have always been fully employed. If you’ve been unemployed for 3 or 6 months, there’s no need to panic yet, but if you’re reaching the 1 year mark, here is what I’d suggest you do:

Check List:

  • Pearly white teeth and fresh breath

  • Business formal attire or trendy hipster gear

  • Pad-folio and a pen with ink

  • Shoe polish

  • Haircut

  • Firm Handshake (might not be the best idea in these times)

  • Friends and….

An Attractive Resume?

Because the resume is the door opener to speaking to someone with decision-making abilities, your resume has to tell a story to capture their attention. The one story that you must fill in is the gap(s) that appear(s) in it. Although there could be many reasons for taking an extended leave of absence after your last job, you should ask yourself if the gaps so frequent that even your mom won’t call and interview you? Not only does your resume describe your background and experience, but it also reveals your habits and patterns. FYI, employers pay attention to them when they review your resume. If you’ve always been employed and suddenly an unusual gap shows up, there must be an extenuating circumstance to explain it. And if there isn’t, then that’s a story you don’t want employers or recruiters wonder about.

An Ability to Network

If you don’t have work, then network! With the Internet and today’s technology, there is no shortage of ways to find them! If you haven’t heard of facebook groups, www.meetup.com, then that is a good start to find likeminded groups that you share similar interests and are genuinely passionate about. The easiest way to getting a job is by knowing people. Ask for help, ask for leads, and ask if they know someone at a company you are interested in working for. Make sure you update your Linkedin profile. Put a professional picture up. Do not put up a selfie picture that you took at the bar last year and please make sure that your profile is complete.

Keep an Active Schedule

It might be safe to presume that you probably heard of “time is money?” Being unemployed is not synonymous with idleness. Why waste time when you have time to do something productive? For example, have I mentioned getting out and talk to people? Also, consider starting up a blog, reading books, volunteering for a cause you care about, grabbing lunch with an old friend, or simply traveling. The point is to create a daily schedule with activities that will develop you and make you grow. Be consistent, be persistent in staying active, and staying connected! Trust me, your parents do not want you to move back in.

Leverage your Recruiter

While I do a great job at managing my candidates,, some of the best candidates that I’ve represented have done an outstanding job of managing me. Successful job seekers leverage their recruiters and keep in touch with their leads because “life is like a box of chocolates, you never know what you’re going to get…” – by Forrest Gump from the movie “Forrest Gump”

Turn it up to Eleven,

Michael Chiang

What You Make Up, Defines You