For job seekers, finding that perfect career may only be half the battle. The other may actually be more difficult. Figuring out your calling may not seem that hard, but if you really think about it (and I mean for more than 10 minutes), discovering what you’re good at, and subsequently what you actually want to do, is quite a mission. However, it doesn’t have to be a huge quest. Here’s how to figure things out in this crazy job search on your own terms, and land a career in the process.
Do the right research. Just because you’re a college graduate or out of high school, doesn’t mean your time doing research is over. Do your homework on not only yourself, but how you can cater your interests into a job. It may sound corny, but proper “soul searching” can give you the introspection you need.
Get yourself a mentor. No one knows a job or an industry better than those who’ve been in the trenches themselves. So, in order to fully figure out your calling, get yourself a mentor, which can be an industry leader, former professor, manager, or even someone you met on Twitter. Their advice can be invaluable to learn more about your future career and how to actually put yourself on the road to success. Most importantly, they can give you some insight on what not to do, ensuring that you don’t make the same mistakes they did.
Use catered resources. Guess what? There are resources out there, online and off, that can help you get a better idea of what you want to do. These tools, from networking to social platforms, can actually rev up your search, as well as steer you in the correct direction. When it comes down to it, you can’t do it all on your own. These resources are here to help, so use them! Further, many are structured specifically for you or for your industry, taking some weight off your shoulders.
Beat the system. HR managers aren’t here to trick you. They just want the best and brightest for the job. So once you actually apply, beat the system and filter through the barriers. For example, many employers require candidates to apply through an Applicant Tracking System (ATS), which handles recruitment needs.
Many times, these systems are formulated with certain keywords and phrases from the actual job description. So, if your application doesn’t have these words, you may be looked over. Take this and all other factors into account when you actually apply. Put yourself in the shoes of the hiring manager. It may be the difference between getting a callback and getting looked over completely.
Figure out if you’re doing something wrong. Have you applied to countless jobs and been left out in the dark in the process? Don’t point any fingers, you could be the real problem. Are you catering your resume? Are you following up? Do you want this job? Employers can tell when your heart is in it and when it’s just “another” job you’re applying to. So take a good look at yourself, your job search plan, as well as how you’re actually doing the applying. You may find some holes in your process, which are best to fill sooner rather than later.
How have you found your calling? Have you used any of these methods?