Looking In All The Right Places

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January 19, 2011

Oregonians today are searching the job market in record high numbers.

Among them are new graduates as well as those reentering the work force after years of absence. For each group, a necessary ingredient is self confidence. Arthur Ashe once said, “One important key to success is self confidence [and] an important key to self confidence is preparation.” With this in mind, how can you prepare for the hunt in today’s challenging employment environment?

Helen Keller suggests that we “look the world right in the eye.” You should start with your immediate circle of friends and acquaintances and network. In today’s tight job market, who you know is as important (or maybe even more so) than what you know. Spread the word informally and try to schedule some informational interviews. Consider volunteering as a way to get your foot in the door, gain a little experience, and position yourself for that lucky break. Go to the local community college (even if you have an undergraduate or graduate degree) and try to meet with a career counselor. Most community colleges are vocational and frequently have transition programs which target displaced workers, homemakers, and single parents. Community colleges also offer an assortment of computer training programs.

In short, be bold and be prepared. Albert Einstein once confessed, “I have no special talents. I am only passionately curious.” To job seekers everywhere I say: heed this genius’s wisdom, and act upon your own curiosity, starting right now.

Good luck!