Unemployment—we have all been there for one reason or another. Some of us complete high school or college only to realize we cannot get a job as fast as we had hoped. Others of us have had solid jobs but are now in between jobs due to layoffs, injuries, etc. The reasons are endless but the feeling we all share when unemployed is the same—anxiety!
I personally felt this anxiety during the 1st quarter of 2012. During December of the preceding year, I had willingly resigned from a major nuclear facility to relocate to be with my brand new wife. The only problem with that is that the new city’s major industry was automotive—an industry that I knew very little about and had very few connections in.
While I applied for numerous jobs every day, visited every career fair in the area, and possibly overcompensated on domestic cooking and cleaning duties, I still made one mistake that I sorely regret—I left “easy money” on the table! Here are my tips on how not to let much-needed “easy money” slip through your fingers while unemployed.
(1) Don’t Be So Picky – Having worked for a Fortune 200 company as a student and as an engineer, I was very snobby about small insignificant issues with new jobs. For instance, if it was a short-term contract job, I didn’t want to do it. If it was a “teacher’s salary” permanent job, I didn’t want to do it. Luckily, I grew out of this habit once debts and bills started being due. And guess what? Once I started being humble and less of a brat, better job opportunities opened up that were previously unavailable.
(2) Be Entrepreneurial – Although it may take a few lucky bounces to land a permanent job with benefits, you do not need luck if you start your own small business. You may not know this but many people in your town need their kids watched, their dogs walked, their leaves racked, and their houses cleaned. If you visit websites like CARE.com, you will see tons of opportunities to make the equivalent of $20-$30 per hour!
The best thing about those jobs is that they do not take up all of your day or all of your week. This will still give you plenty of time to apply for full-time jobs and to interview for full-time jobs.
(3) Knock on Doors – Fun fact. You cannot find jobs online. Well, at least not at the same rate as you would if employers have a personal connection with a living, breathing person. Online job hunting only has a 1-2% success rate. I don’t know about you, but that’s a horrible success rate. So my advice now and forever is to visit employers in person, ask for tours, and attend career fairs. Those are sure fire ways to get your name out there, especially if you do not know anyone at the very beginning of your job search process.
Also, do not be afraid to get a head hunter or a recruiter—they are monetarily incentivized to look for great opportunities for you. The more money you make, the more money they make too. So take advantage of this relationship. Recruiters know way more employers than you will ever know.
Can you think of other tips? Do you disagree with these tips? #unemploymenthustle