Tips to Start ANY Job Search

Its the day after Christmas and I’ve been unemployed for twelve days now. The first week of unemployment I was busy giving myself a much-needed break. I was tired, sad and confused as to what to do next in this crazy thing we call ‘life’. It’s a little disorienting knowing that ‘the world is my oyster’ because there are a lot of oysters in the sea and I really don’t know which one to eat.

If only life were like the aptly named game, Life. I could spin a wheel and someone at the table would hold out three career cards for me to choose from. I’d get to pick from doctor or lawyer or artist, and be on my merry way.

Alas, life is not that simple, and I am now finding myself in the fading glow of my self-prescribed ‘Winter Break’.

Time to put on my big girl panties and find a job. Preferably a job I fucking love.

I’m going to share some of the strategies I am doing in the first, second, third, etc. stages of my Job Search. I hope they help!

Tip 1: Zero In

A little history on my job path. My career straight out of college was being a Science Teacher. I enrolled in an Alternative Route to Licensure(ARL) program where I could teach while getting my Masters and Credentials! And I freaking loved it. I loved teaching kids about the human body and how awesome cells were. But I didn’t love the stress of waking up at 6am and working until 9pm grading papers in between gulping down a second Cup of Noodles.

Teaching

So after four years working in education, I decided to take a break. I was itching to try something new. So I mozied on over to the dark side – the tech world.

I took up a position as a Project Manager(PM) – and it should be no surprise that managing adult engineers is way easier than managing 40 pre-pubescent middle schoolers doing biology labs.

After about a year, I was let go along with 75% of the company. Which brings me to today. Trying to figure out what I want to do next. Everyone keeps telling me to go back to teaching, but I’m not so sure.

I’m not gonna lie, I was pretty frantic when I lost my job and applied to pretty much every field I could think of. I thought I could be an editor because I used to edit 200+ essays a week, and I thought I could be a social media strategist because sometimes I get a solid amount of likes on my posts. But in hindsight, it was a waste of time. These jobs aren’t what I really want to spend my 9-5 doing!

Zeroing in: My epiphany!

After many weeks days of crying, soul searching and now meditating, I’ve come to the conclusion that I want to work in the Education Technology field.

Ed Tech for short.

The perfect blend of education and technology.

Now I just have to find a job.

Tip 2: Picture the Ideal Environment

There are a few features I am looking for in my next job. I know that I can’t be too picky, but I sure as heck will try to manifest them. My goal is to find companies that have environments I can thrive in! Environments with qualities I either really liked or wish had been present in my previous positions. And in my next ideal career, these three conditions will be met:

  • A forward thinking team and community
  • Gender and racial diversity
  • Flexibility to work from home when needed

Now some of you may be thinking “uh, what about a six-figure salary!?” or “what about free snacks and meals?!”. Well, I hear ya, and in a perfect world, all of those things would be there too. But tbh having freshly prepared chow mein or a spicy Taco Tuesday isn’t as important as having more than one person to go to when I forget to bring a tampon.

Tip 3: Revise your Resume

This step seems pretty obvious in the initial stages of my job search, but I feel I should mention it. When I say revise my resume I don’t mean adding my latest role, changing some font and calling it a day. What I mean is taking time to revamp each role responsibility to make me seem like the overachiever I am. And you should too.

It’s not cool to sell yourself short in order to seem ‘humble’. And it’s definitely not cool to downplay any accomplishments you’ve achieved from your hard work.

Heed my advice: Give your resume the time, effort and attention you give to your Instagram captions – times two.

Tip 4: List of 20 Companies

I know I’ve said in previous posts that I’ve pumped the breaks on applying to jobs, and I have…sort of. It’s been overwhelming to receive so many rejections and/or ghosts.

In preparation for a more efficient and effective job application process, I’ve started a list of 20 companies I’d love to work for. Companies that seem to have a fun, fast-paced work environment! I will put time and effort into creating curated resumes and cover letters for each!

With my new found field of choice in mind(Ed Tech), I can now browse LinkedIn with a purpose. I can search up one company, and see related companies that might be of interest!

Then, I’ll add those companies to my list and visit their websites to see their open jobs.

I currently have 13 companies on my growing list, with 1-2 jobs (and their links) listed below for each!

Final Thoughts

Part One of my job search journey is about getting myself set up for success rather than taking action. I’ve been thinking about what I do and do not want in my next career. By doing this I hope that I will not only find a job I love, but find a company I love working for.

I can’t wait to keep you guys updated – subscribe to Tech Talk Code to follow my journey!

P.S. Here’s the tea on my job loss, check out Getting Let Go: My Story.

Sipping Tea

2 thoughts on “Tips to Start ANY Job Search

  1. Great advice! I feel you girl – last year right before thanksgiving I was in the same place with a non-intentional break. I give you many kudos for kicking ass and being proactive during a difficult time!

    1. Thank you! It feels great to hear that other people have been going through what I am! Keep kicking ass!! And happy new year!

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