My advice to you would be to create 2 CV’s. Both need expanding to a couple of pages and covering your specific skills, competencies, responsibilities and achievements, as well as having a statement about your career goals and profile.
- Creative CV – You should create a CV that uses and showcases your talents. Make it bright and vibrant. Maybe consider using some infographics to show your social media follower numbers and/or targets you have met or projects you have delivered on. Demonstrate some of your work and achievements. Let your creativity flow to really show a prospective employer exactly what you can do.
- Standard/Recruiter CV – Create a text version, a plain word document version of your CV for sending in conjunction with your more creative CV to a recruiter. This will help as a recruiter wants a simple document they can add to their database and format in their style to send on to clients. It should cover all your achievements, responsibilities and career goals.
- LinkedIn – You should update your LinkedIn profile to reflect your work and interests and set yourself up on there as open to opportunities and showcase your work. This will make it easier for you to be found by employers and recruiters. Get some contacts you have to recommend you/endorse you on there and add some of those snippets to your CV. People believe what others have said about them more than what they say about themselves! Have a really good photo of yourself on there – head and shoulders shot is ideal. Have a headline and check your messages and notifications daily.
- Job Boards – Add your Standard CV to the job board databases. CV Library, Reed, Monster, Totaljobs, Jobsite, Indeed and any other industry specific ones that you may be able to find. This will enable recruiters and employers to find you and contact you directly. You should also sign up to the job boards, “jobs by email” services so that you can be notified by the job boards whenever there is a new job listed that meets your criteria. Apply quickly and follow up with every job you apply for. Find the hiring manager on linked in and send them a message – follow up once, twice, three times. Keep following up until they tell you to stop – and then send them one more for good measure. (I once called and emailed a prospect 37 times before they finally told me to piss off. They called me back a couple of months later with a great opportunity to do some work for them!) The key to success is knowing what you want and persevering until you get it.
- Self Promotion – Create a dream list of employers that you would love to work for. This should be minimum of 20 companies and there is no maximum! Research them and note what you like about them and why you think you could add value to them. Find out who the key people in the business are and send them your CV regardless of whether they have a live job for you or not. Make sure you send them a cover letter that is not BORING. Be yourself and demonstrate your passion and determination to succeed and let them know how you could improve/ add value to their business. Ask if you can come in for a visit even if they don’t have anything for you currently. Show up on time, smart, lively and enthusiastically. Employers love that!
- Video – If you are feeling particularly brave create a video that can complement your application. You can post it as a private video on YT or Vimeo and only people with the link can see it. Video’s outside work well as long as the wind noise is not too loud. Just an elevator pitch explaining who you are, what you are looking for and excited about, where you are located and able to work geographically and what you would do to add value to an employer. 2 mins max. Share it with your applications or direct approaches.
- Network like crazy speaking to everyone you know, discreetly, but letting them know what you are looking for and who would be a good introduction for you. People love to help.
- Agencies –Find a specialist and/or local agencies that may be able to introduce you to their clients. Don’t rely solely on this and if your recruiter doesn’t keep in touch with you with feedback drop them like a stone into a big hole. There are plenty of good agencies out there, and unfortunately quite a few short-term thinkers as well.
- Interviews – Research everything you can about the company and the interviewer. Take the pressure off yourself completely by remembering your entire future does not depend on this one meeting. Whatever happens, good or bad, you have an amazing opportunity to gain interview experience and learn new stuff. If it goes well and you get the job… BRILLIANT, crack open the champers. If it doesn’t happen, chill! Ask for feedback and what you could have done better, or what the successful person demonstrated that you didn’t. Take every opportunity to develop and improve.
Finding a new job can sometimes be easy, but more often than not it is hard to get the exact thing you want and sometime you may have to take a step back to leap forwards.
The biggest challenge is likely to be wrestling with your own mind and keeping a positive perspective especially when it feels like you are getting nowhere.
You should create a routine. Put stuff in your diary and tick it off every time you complete it. Seeing what you have done towards your goal is a great way to remain focussed and positive.
If you are looking for work whilst also currently in a job then prioritise a full day (take a day off for it or do it on one of your off days) to set up and then take min. 30 minutes every day to check in with your progress and take some action.
If you are out of work then have a daily routine that includes the obvious stuff like looking through job boards and linked in, checking your jobs by emails or connecting with new people, but you should also create time to get some fresh air, exercise, be mindful and grateful for what you do have.
Celebrate every win no matter how small even if it is just with a cup of tea.
Speak to positive influences and ask for help … people love to help.
Good luck. But remember you create your own.