Job searching can be a seemingly endless process. It does have an end, because it had a beginning. We simply don't know when the end will come. Rest assured, it will end with you getting a job.
This past week I heard from two people who've been looking for quite a while (months and months) that they got the jobs they wanted. Hooray! I needed to hear that good news, almost as much as they needed to get the jobs. It was evidence that there really IS an end to the job search.
While I haven't debriefed with them, my knowledge of their process leads me to conclude that a few things were key to their success:
1) Both people were extremely clear on what they wanted - the work, the culture, the role, compensation, impact, physical environment (the Must Have List you'll find elsewhere in this blog).
One had to revise her Must Have List after it became clear that she wasn't taking action toward what she thought she wanted to do. So we looked at a list of the accomplishments of which she was proudest. All were centered on one type of work. Once she was clear that she wanted to do that kind of work, a perfect opportunity presented itself and she easily and peacefully took all the required actions. And she got the job!
2) Both understood exactly how their work history and volunteer work led to and prepared them for the particular job opportunity.
For the second person, the job was a step up from anything he had done previously. He worried that this would disqualify him. Together, we realized that he gathered requisite experience for the new job from all his previous jobs. His combination of experience and skills were unique, and perfectly suited to the job opportunity. He became convinced himself that he had what it took, and he was able to communicate that certainty and confidence on his interviews. And voila! He also got the job.
Clarity is essential, as is commitment. Once these people knew what they wanted, they were willing to do what it took to reach that goal. They focused on what they wanted, without ambivalence or hesitation.
I think it was impossible for the first person to commit to a job search UNTIL she was crystal clear about what she wanted. She got rid of all the "I should" and "they think" ideas, and looked inside and out for the "right fit" work for her.
It was easier to Never Give Up on herself once she was committed, and believed that she would get a job. It was only a matter of time. And it turned out that the time involved was fairly short - about two months from realization to job offer. The same time frame applied to the second person.
If you're in a seemingly endless and hopeless job search, try using the Must Have List guide to get absolute clarity about what you want. It is a great tool and will make it more likely that you will find your "right fit" work, possibly sooner than you think.