There are periods in the job search process where job candidates wait too passively for a response from potential employers.
As the director of the Career and Counseling Center at Nebraska Wesleyan University, I regularly interact with students and alumni who desire new job opportunities. One of the frequent comments I hear from people during the process is this: The waiting is the hardest part.
There are periods in the job search process, or, as NWU alumnus Richard Deems (’58) and his daughter Terri Deems phrase it in their book, the “JobGetting” process, where job candidates wait too passively for a response from potential employers.
In their recently published book, Make Job Loss Work for You: Get Over It and Get Your Career Back on Track, Deems and Deems turn this notion of inherent passivity on its head. They outline “Five JobGetting Steps” that defeat the notion of sitting and waiting. They call on people to:
- Research the position;
- Research the organization;
- Evaluate their strengths and interests;
- Design their positioning strategy;
- and Implement that strategy.
These steps require continual action, with a strong emphasis on making connections with potential employers both before and after they’ve submitted a résumé and cover letter. The authors also emphasize actively researching the ways in which certain skills will position a company for increased success. Their process effectively educates “JobGetters” on a more active experience, encouraging them to take control of their searches.
While musician Tom Petty and others would agree that the waiting is the hardest part, that’s not to say that other parts of job searching are simple. Richard and Terri Deems offer pragmatic advice to readers on everything from résumés to skill assessment, interviewing and salary negotiation.
The book’s greatest value, however, lies in its focus on individuals who have experienced a job loss. While acknowledging and educating readers on typical reactions to job loss, the book quickly moves into a positive and motivating guide for people at a time when they are most in need of advice and support.