2020 gave us plenty of reasons to throw in the towel, but it also gave us some time to reflect on our values, what we have to offer, and what really matters to us at the end of the day. Right now is the time to make calculated moves towards the jobs and companies that you want to be a part of. What are you going to do with that extra skill you picked up in quarantine? What are you going to do with the opportunity to work remotely that wasn’t as accessible before? A lot of companies have started bouncing back and are ready to hire tech savvy and forward-thinking employees. Here are some tips on how to stay motivated over the holiday and give yourself a head start in the New Year.
- Break Away
One thing that will absolutely kill your motivation, is limiting yourself to titles and roles that you have already accomplished. Employers are looking for adaptability and creativity because every single industry has been forced to pivot what they do and how they do it! Emphasize they ways that you are self-motivated and able to work independently, so it is not a far stretch for an employer to imagine you in a remote position. If the role calls for remote collaboration, talk about the tools that you have used in the last 9 months to adapt to a remote workforce and keep connected with family and colleagues. If you have always worked in a specific niche like Accounting, think about the strengths you bring to that industry- are you great at processing large amounts of data and translating it to information that advances the knowledge of your team? Can you spot a miscalculation from a mile away? Really start to break down how your skillset made a direct impact on your job rather than typing a dry list of daily job duties.
- You Define What You Are Capable Of
So often we can psych ourselves out of an opportunity because of the title, but the truth is you are probably more qualified for that job that caught your eye than you realize, and it is always worth a shot. I am not telling you to be dishonest, but I am telling you to get creative with how you describe your unique background and skillset. Read the job description for the role that you want and adapt that language to your resume. Maybe you have worked in a public facing role where you had to work with a lot of 3rd parties, but you never thought to call them vendors. Maybe you have always worked on your feet, quickly and efficiently, but never stopped to think about how great you are meeting deadlines. Every industry has their own set of buzz words, and once you start to do the research, you will see them everywhere. (Take it from me- there are only so many ways a person can write a job description!) Using that language shows not only that you are doing your research, but that you really took the time to understand the industry you are trying to be a part of.
- Think Ahead About Your Digital Strengths
A few years ago, I worked at a job that required me to work one day a week remote. While that did not make me an expert, it did set me up with enough success that I was able to adapt to a completely remote job a little more quickly. Full time remote work is enough of a new thing right now, that no one is expecting experts, but if you have accomplished any kind of project or had any kind of remote experience in your previous roles, now is the time to highlight and (reasonably) brag about it. Even social media tools we previously only used in our own personal lives are now developing tools that are essential to building the brand foundation of a company and keeping us all connected. If you are great at SEO, building websites, writing copy, or building a network – talk about it! The future is digital, and employers want to know that they are hiring people who are comfortable with digital tools.
- Always Be Open to Connection and Opportunity
It’s important to keep your resume up to date, and always have your eyes and ears peeled for opportunity. We are in unpredictable times, and unfortunately, even the job you love is not 100% secure. Don’t be afraid to say yes if someone wants to talk to you about an opportunity or connect over a shared interest. You never know who or what interaction will impact you later- so make yourself known as an open and generous person that lifts others up, and people will want to lift you in return.
The holiday season is a great time to take a step back, reflect on what you have accomplished, and take the time to show appreciation to the people in your life that mean the most. It is also the time to believe in yourself, and create the plans that will turn your dreams into action. In an unprecedented year with challenges that shook the foundations of everything we knew, I’ll end with some wise words from John F. Kennedy; “Change is the law of life, and those who look only to the past and present are certain to miss the future.”