Oh, that job hunt!

I was so lucky. When I moved to Victoria, I had a place to land and a place to grow. The Chamber was wonderful to me. The role allowed me to meet people, shake hands and get my name out there in a way no amount of coffee dates could. Unfortunately, things must end. I still am not connected in the same way I was in Kingston and that comes with a million of unique challenges.

Searching for a job is exhausting. I find that it is the most painful and draining process around. And job boards? They are all the same. I will argue this all the time. How can you possibly determine if the words on a piece of paper are the right fit for your team, business or role you need to fill. Yes, it is full of hard skills but at the end of the day, most of them can be taught to someone. You can teach photoshop, you can’t teach artistic eye. Either they have it or they don’t and you will never know from a two-page resume that comes loaded with words in 10 font so you can cram as much information as humanly possible into an 8.5×11 piece of paper.

So yes, I have used the job boards. In fact, in the last week alone I have applied to 13 different jobs. Will I hear back from them ever? Maybe, likely not. My favourite part of the job hunt is this: “Thank you for your application. Due to the volume of applications we receive, only successful candidates will be contacted.” Okay sick. So I will just sit here and stare at a wall until you decide if my piece of paper is nicer than the next persons.

But! My friends, there is a solution to the madness of job hunting. It’s called: networking! As the famous Bill Crowe once said, “is your net, working?” Well is it? Have you networked to the point in which you can go back to it and ask to have a coffee with someone to talk about their career, what they have learned and what advice they can give a new grad?

Mine does. That’s how I met several people here in October, that is how I have booked two interviews in Victoria. It is also how I am working on building a network of professionals and mentors. Every person I sent an email to got back to me within a day. Some aren’t able to bring me on at this time but have asked for a resume to keep, for now, others have offered to send me a list of people to get in touch with, others said they would like to talk to me and can you come in on Monday?

This trick was given to me by one of the most influential professors I have ever had. It has changed the way I approach meeting people, networking and job hunting. This trick will likely change the path of my career.

So my advice to new grads who are job hunting? Get out there and talk to people, shake hands, and take someone for coffee. Even if you don’t get a job out of it, you have made a worthwhile connection and I bet you learned something!

Any other tips out there? Let me know!

-M