Job Hunting during the Holiday Season: A Friendly Reminder - Lest We Forget!
Given the holiday period, present state of the economy with the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, mortgage collapses, the healthcare crisis, imminent layoffs in recession-resistant industries such as pharmaceuticals, and the general mood of the nation, all I hear from my clients is that it is not exactly a good time to look for a job.
Sorry! Wrong! The above statement is a myth! Just the opposite! I beg to differ and I'll tell you why.
Based on my personal experiences during the past decade and a half, I can tell you confidently that the holiday months of November and December are the best months for job hunting. Thrice during this period of fifteen years, I have landed $100,000+ jobs, starting during the first two weeks in January.
Why is that? This is because the seeds were sown during the last two months of the year, the results of which were harvested in January of the following year.
From Thanksgiving week to New Year's Day, corporate America bathes in a special glow.
Just think of it! A holiday and shopping mood prevails.
Executives in position with power to hire you are generally traveling less during this period.
People are taking vacations. A holiday spirit prevails and there is a greater mood of courtesy and charity
...don't ask me for a rational explanation! Maybe because the smoke from the "chestnuts roasting on the open fire" gets into people's minds and hearts!
Another factor is that managers may have more time to talk with you and are relaxed.
Note that other job hunters have temporarily dropped out of the race for two months which gives you a statistical advantage to win or bag your trophy (your desirable job). So, please don't slow down in your job search - speed up!
If you were a hiring manager, would you not admire a candidate with perseverance and patience? It would automatically work for the candidate.
Note that the company's annual budgets are also being tweaked in November and December for the following year. You may even be able to create a new job
(...remember the hidden job market!) in the mind of the hiring manager who will certainly remember you. It may also allow her to place additional money in her budget for next year.
Don't forget to stay sober at company holiday parties and keep making mini-pitches without making yourself a bore!
It is a perfect opportunity for networking. Don't pass it up! If you have friends at other companies, see if you can get yourself invited as a guest. I have done that and it works! The same principle holds true for parties given by friends and neighbors. There is no harm in discreetly exchanging business cards at most parties.
If you are a career coach, ask your counselees to take these admonitions to heart.
If you are a counselee reading this article, "follow the directions Career Doctor Don gave you", and you may surprise yourself by being delivered a belated Holiday Gift - A NEW JOB
- in the size, style and color you always wanted!
I want to wish you a Meaningful Thanksgiving, a Happy Hanukkah, a Merry Christmas, a Proud Kwanzaa, and a very Happy New Year.
Don Sutaria is Founder and President of CareerQuest (formerly New Life Career Counseling), located in New York and New Jersey. CareerQuest is also mentioned in "What Color is Your Parachute?" Sutaria is a consultant to individuals and various corporations, offering executive coaching and career management services. He has developed unique methods for capturing jobs in the new millennium. He appeared on a Phil Donahue TV special on unorthodox methods of job hunting. Known as "Career Doctor Don", he has been quoted in The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, The Salt Lake Tribune, The Star-Ledger, The Union Leader, WorkingSmart, SmartMoney, Fortune, Money, and on WINS and WOR radio. He specializes in counseling of international professionals, Generation X (age 20-29), career changers, freelancers, consultants, mid-career executives and people over age 50. He really believes that your career is a pathway to your soul.
Mr. Sutaria has over forty years of diversified industrial and management experience, complemented by training in career development and hands-on experience in career advising. He is an international cross-cultural trainer. He has also served on committees of several organizations, and conducted courses, seminars and symposiums at Columbia University, New York University, Nyack College, Alliance Graduate School of Counseling, Rutgers, and Stevens Institute of Technology. He is a member of the Association of Career Professionals International and the Career Counselors Consortium.
Don earned his MS degree in Management from Kansas State University, an IE (Professional) degree in International Management and Personnel Relations from Columbia University, and obtained New York University's postgraduate Certificate in Adult Career Planning and Development.
Don Sutaria is the author of
Career And Life Counseling From The Heart (Your Career Is A Pathway To Your Soul!), published in 2008.