Do I have your attention? I should! As a job seeker, I am constantly scanning the market for a role that will match my experience, skill set, passion and leadership style. Not only do I want to add value in the role, but I want to feel accepted into the organization, find new ways to learn and grow and be empowered to bring my best self to work each day.
What I am realizing is … job seeking IS a job. It has requirements, expectations, achievements, learnings and collaborations. While it may not be a job that pays money (in the short run), it can deliver value and be extremely rewarding (& fun!).
The challenging part is … its a new job, one I haven’t done in 20+ years (at least externally to Target) and requires me to be performing, at my best, day 1. The learning curve is extremely steep, requiring daily vulnerability and retrospect; which can be emotionally exhausting.
So, I did a bit of internet research and decided to write a job description for all of us job seekers as validation. Validation that we what are doing every day IS real work, IS value added and IS part of our natural/planned career path.*
Seeking a highly motivated individual that can perform the job responsibilities for an indefinite period marked by infrequent and unpredictable feedback cycles. Candidates must possess excellent communication and organizational skills and be wiling to work variable hours at multiple locations; both onsite and offsite. The ability to be responsive, resilient and positive in the face of set backs and redirection is critical. Recognition will come in the form of new roles/responsibilities within a new organization (aka, the opportunity to learn a new job).
- Cultivate 10-15 networking meetings per week, every week. This can include; cold calling, warm calls to friends/family/former coworkers and attending events.
- Dedicate ~ 6 hours per week, every week to online research of potential contacts, organizations, leaders, industry developments and shifting policies.
- Attend training to further skills including; leadership training, continuing education in target sector, personal development, reading and technical training.
- Identify and initiate 2-4 skill based volunteering/consulting opportunities to build skill set in sector, cultivate credibility and produce results.
- Attend industry forums and, if appropriate, serve on boards/advisory councils which support target sector.
- Offer references, referrals, connections, support and coaching to both hiring managers and fellow job seekers; sharing your experience, learnings and intellectual capital.
Note: the above should be completed in ~30 hours/week, any effort beyond this has diminishing returns
- Business etiquette
- Attention to detail
- Written and verbal communication
- Self direction
- Sales and marketing
- Time management
- Social media and new technology acumen
- Data synthesis & analysis
- Market research
- Customer service
- Brand management
- Marketing strategy
- Relationship management
- Performance monitoring
- Project management
- Other duties assigned (for me this includes…carpooling for kids sports, homework, lunches and doctors appointments)
Good news! All experience levels will be considered; recent graduates, individual contributors, leaders, advanced degrees, consultants, volunteers, sector shifters, returning to the workforce, etc. A variety of life experiences is preffered.
Wages and Compensation
None. However, be prepared to buy coffees, breakfast, lunches and drinks at happy hour. Also prepare to invest in training, website support, resume coaching and career counseling. Your gas budget will also increase.
No… health insurance, pension, tuition reimbursement, paid holidays, stock options or independent working conditions
Priceless …experience meeting new people, assisting with connections, learning new sectors, understanding yourself better
I fully suspect that once I get good at this job (and I will) fate will land me in my next role. Given that, my pledge is to continue to help other job seekers and keep my search skills fresh/current, especially once I land a new role.
Does this sound right? What am I missing? What doesn’t ring true? Feedback welcome!!
* shout out to Hanna Morgan at Career Sherpa, her blog provided some of the content and inspiration for this blog