Q: Read your article at a coffee shop this Sunday. I am unemployed with a hacked bank account whose negative balance is $3,700. I was a data center shift coordinator at an industry leader before its bankruptcy.
I've work mostly in IT desktop, helpdesk, network and technical support for over 15 years. I keep searching and interviewing. Currently I’m working part-time IT projects at various banks. I’ll be doing computer set-ups of 80 systems Monday, moving these devices on Friday and finishing this project the next Monday. Are you aware of job opportunities here?
A: Stop saying you’re unemployed, which undersells you and isn’t true. Part-timing makes you a more attractive candidate than the legions of people with no work at all.
You know the landscape. Rather than focusing primarily on “job opportunities,” develop a list of potential employers to find out about the challenges in their operations. Get in to see them. Convince them that you can help them because of the results you’ve achieved in the past. Make sure your resume includes your current work.
Find out when they suggest you follow up. Schedule call-backs.
Q: I’ve made the mistake of listening too much to the media, which keeps talking about people down on their luck professionally. The young don’t have work experience and are being beaten out of entry-level jobs by older workers. Older workers think they’re being discriminated against. The management ranks for people in between are thinning. There just aren’t enough jobs to go around. I feel buried in several years of bad news.
A: Create some light for yourself! Jot down good news you catch in the media. Keep track of the number of new jobs every month. Rather than looking at the glass as half-empty, draw a picture of one that’s half-full with your favorite smoothie. Then, every time you hear about new jobs, sketch a glass that’s a little more full. Focus on how your smoothie is getting larger rather than smaller and how good the contents taste.
When you encounter bad news, remind yourself of the smoothie. Do the same thing when you go to interviews. Find out what you’re doing wrong in your job hunt so you can fill your glass to the top