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Here’s Why Now is the Best Time to Apply for Your Dream Job

Here’s Why Now is the Best Time to Apply for Your Dream Job

As we enter a new year and return to everyday life, there are many of us who will be looking for new jobs and opportunities. Anyone who has ever had to seek employment knows just how difficult it can be, but what if there was a specific time during the year when it was easiest?

You may believe that due to the Internet and sites such as LinkedIn or the hundreds of other job sites available, seasons don’t really have an impact on when you’re most likely to be hired. This couldn’t be more wrong!

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Without a doubt, the best time to start looking for a job is when you need one, but at this time of year you have a significant advantage. According to employment experts, not only is the new year a fresh start for you, it also represents the launch of hiring season for numerous companies and organizations. Employers will be embarking on new projects and initiatives, which means they will need additional staff.

A study conducted by Executives Online found that 36% more client briefs were issued in January 2013 than in the months beforehand. Meanwhile, the ratio of new candidates receiving new jobs was higher in January than any other month, a massive 24% higher than it’s runner up.

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The quicker you are to send your application in the better, because most people neglect job seeking during the holiday season. There is a common belief that hiring managers will be away during the festive season and so sending out resumes is a waste of time. Although the former part of this idea may be true, those managers will be returning one day and will have positions to fill. If you send your resume to an employer right now, chances are you’ll be one of the first candidates they’ll see when it’s back to business.

Kathleen Brady, author of GET A JOB! 10 Steps To Career Success, told Business News Daily, “The seasons correlate to business cycles. During the first quarter, businesses ramp up to set the objectives and targets for the year. There is a flurry of hiring activity to support new initiatives, and to replace employees who announce their departure after collecting year-end bonuses.”

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If the company you apply for executes their budgets according to a traditional calendar, chances are they will not only have a strong budget in place already, they may even have extra money to spend. Aaron Green, the proud owner of a staffing and recruitment firm, wrote, “businesses that report their financials on a regular calendar year may be waiting for new budgets to kick in after December 31–their headcount quotas may increase and they therefore may be very motivated to bring on new staff as soon as they can flip the page on the calendar. Or they may want to fill a position before their headcount quotas are reduced in the New Year’s budget.”

Meanwhile, summer is unanimously regarded as the worst possible time to job hunt. Studies show that productivity in the workplace can reduce by almost 20% throughout June to August, and that’s amongst employees who already have a job. This is widely known as the “Summer Slump” because employers are much more likely to go on vacation or avoid tasks that aren’t essential so that they get off work a couple of hours early than to sit and read dozens of resumes. The only jobs that do see a steady hiring rate throughout the summer months are outdoors trades such personal trainers.

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If you’re looking for a job, it is time to ensure your resume is accurate, detailed, relevant and proofread. It’s time to start handing it out!

Featured photo credit: Chrome & Graphic Pens with a Diary/Viktor Hanacek via picjumbo.com

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Siobhan Harmer

Siobhan is a passionate writer sharing about motivation and happiness tips on Lifehack.

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Last Updated on October 13, 2020

How to Get Promoted When You Feel Stuck in Your Current Position

How to Get Promoted When You Feel Stuck in Your Current Position

Have you been stuck in the same position for too long and don’t really know how to get promoted and advance your career?

Feeling stuck could be caused by a variety of things:

  • Taking a job for the money
  • Staying with an employer that no longer aligns with your values
  • Realizing that you landed yourself in the wrong career
  • Not feeling valued or feeling underutilized
  • Taking a position without a full understanding of the role

There are many other reasons why you may be feeling this way, but let’s focus instead on learning what to do now in order to get unstuck and get promoted

One of the best ways to get promoted is by showing how you add value to your organization. Did you make money, save money, improve a process, or do some other amazing thing? How else might you demonstrate added value?

Let’s dive right in to how to get promoted when you feel stuck in your current position.

1. Be a Mentor

When I supervised students, I used to warm them — tongue in cheek, of course — about getting really good at their job.

“Be careful not to get too good at this, or you’ll never get to do anything else.”

This was my way of pestering them to take on additional challenges or think outside the box, but there is definitely some truth in doing something so well that your manager doesn’t trust anyone else to do it.

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This can get you stuck.

Jo Miller of Be Leaderly shares this insight on when your boss thinks you’re too valuable in your current job:

“Think back to a time when you really enjoyed your current role…You became known for doing your job so well that you built up some strong ‘personal brand’ equity, and people know you as the go-to-person for this particular job. That’s what we call ‘a good problem to have’: you did a really good job of building a positive perception about your suitability for the role, but you may have done ‘too’ good of a job!”[1]

With this in mind, how do you prove to your employer that you can add value by being promoted?

From Miller’s insight, she talks about building your personal brand and becoming known for doing a particular job well. So how can you link that work with a position or project that will earn you a promotion?

Consider leveraging your strengths and skills.

Let’s say that the project you do so well is hiring and training new entry-level employees. You have to post the job listing, read and review resumes, schedule interviews, make hiring decisions, and create the training schedules. These tasks require skills such as employee relations, onboarding, human resources software, performance management, teamwork, collaboration, customer service, and project management. That’s a serious amount of skills!

Are there any team members who can perform these skills? Try delegating and training some of your staff or colleagues to learn your job. There are a number of reasons why this is a good idea:

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  1. Cross-training helps in any situation in the event that there’s an extended illness and the main performer of a certain task is out for a while.
  2. As a mentor to a supervisee or colleague, you empower them to increase their job skills.
  3. You are already beginning to demonstrate that added value to your employer by encouraging your team or peers to learn your job and creating team players.

Now that you’ve trained others to do that work for which you have been so valued, you can see about re-requesting that promotion. Explain how you have saved the company money, encouraged employees to increase their skills, or reinvented that project of yours.

2. Work on Your Mindset

Another reason you may feel stuck in a position is explained through this quote:

“If you feel stuck at a job you used to love, it’s normally you—not the job—who needs to change. The position you got hired for is probably the exact same one you have now. But if you start to dread the work routine, you’re going to focus on the negatives.”[2]

In this situation, you should pursue a conversation with your supervisor and share your thoughts and feelings to help you learn how to get promoted. You can probably get some advice on how to rediscover the aspects of that job you enjoyed, and negotiate either some additional duties or a chance to move up.

Don’t express frustration. Express a desire for more.

Present your case and show your boss or supervisor that you want to be challenged, and you want to move up. You want more responsibility in order to continue moving the company forward. Focus on how you can do that with the skills you have and the positive mindset you’ve cultivated.

3. Improve Your Soft Skills

When was the last time you put focus and effort into upping your game with those soft skills? I’m talking about those seemingly intangible things that make you the experienced professional in your specific job skills[3].

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Use soft skills when learning how to get promoted.

    According to research, improving soft skills can boost productivity and retention 12 percent and deliver a 250 percent return on investment based on higher productivity and retention[4]. Those are only some of the benefits for both you and your employer when you want to learn how to get promoted.

    You can hone these skills and increase your chances of promotion into a leadership role by taking courses or seminars.

    Furthermore, you don’t necessarily need to request funding from your supervisor. There are dozens of online courses being presented by entrepreneurs and authors about these very subjects. Udemy and Creative Live both feature online courses at very reasonable prices. And some come with completion certificates for your portfolio!

    Another way to improve your soft skills is by connecting with an employee at your organization who has a position similar to the one you want.

    Express your desire to move up in the organization, and ask to shadow that person or see if you can sit in on some of their meetings. Offer to take that individual out for coffee and ask what their secret is! Take copious notes, and then immerse yourself in the learning.

    The key here is not to copy your new mentor. Rather, you want to observe, learn, and then adapt according to your strengths.

    4. Develop Your Strategy

    Do you even know specifically why you want to learn how to get promoted? Do you see a future at this company? Do you have a one-year, five-year, or ten-year plan for your career path? How often do you consider your “why” and insure that it aligns with your “what”?

    Sit down and make an old-fashioned pro and con list.

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    Write down every positive aspect of your current job and then every negative one. Which list is longer? Are there any themes present?

    Look at your lists and choose the most exciting pros and the most frustrating cons. Do those two pros make the cons worth it? If you can’t answer that question with a “yes,” then getting promoted at your current organization may not be what you really want[5].

    The two most important days in your life are the day you are born and the day you find out why. —Mark Twain

    Here are some questions to ask yourself:

    • Why do you do what you do?
    • What thrills you about your current job role or career?
    • What does a great day look like?
    • What does success look and feel like beyond the paycheck?
    • How do you want to feel about your impact on the world when you retire?

    Define success to get promoted

      These questions would be great to reflect on in a journal or with your supervisor in your next one-on-one meeting. Or, bring it up with one of your work friends over coffee.

      Final Thoughts

      After considering all of these points and doing your best to learn how to get promoted, what you might find is that being stuck is your choice. Then, you can set yourself on the path of moving up where you are, or moving on to something different.

      Because sometimes the real promotion is finding your life’s purpose.

      More Tips on How to Get Promoted

      Featured photo credit: Razvan Chisu via unsplash.com

      Reference

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