Helping your clients set S.M.A.R.T. job search goals!
By Lee-Anne Geseron.
With a new year comes new energy, new hopes and new dreams. We all know that setting S.M.A.R.T. goals keeps us on track and focused. This is equally important to our clients when they are kick starting their job search. Whether you are working on an employment plan together or simply offering the tools and resources, you can set S.M.A.R.T. goals.
Here is how I explain S.M.A.R.T. goal setting to my clients.
S – Be SPECIFIC!
You may have heard the saying “if you cater to everyone, you cater to no one”? So, what does this mean in your job search? All to often I see generalized cover letters and resumes come through with individuals claiming that they “will do anything”! While you may feel open to this, designing your job search plan around this will not land you among the top of the competition. Employers want to know what you can do for them and that will require you being not only specific about what market you are catering to, but how you can specifically bring value to the role(s) in which you are applying.
M – Is it MEASURABLE?
Keep a job search log. It is important to track, where you have applied, how you applied and what, if any, outcome came of it. This will be your system for tracking your efforts and determining if your plan is working for you, or against you. The last thing you want to do is keep going in circles with a job search technique, or cover letter/resume that is ineffective. Remember, once you have come up with your goals and made a plan, it is time to get out there and put that plan into action. Then evaluate your efforts and correct your plan as needed. These simple steps will keep you on track and accountable…Set goals, get out there, evaluate, correct!
A – Is it ATTAINABLE?
It will be important to do some Labour Market Research. It is great to have an employment target but are there positions available? Is there opportunity for advancement (if that is what you aspire to do)? When developing your goals and job search plan be sure your targets are in line with your local labour market needs.
R – Are you being REALISTIC?
You really do have to be realistic in your job search goals. There is no question that the labour market is competitive. Have you really considered your experiences, education and portfolio? I don’t say this to sway you from going after your dreams but it is important that you “walk the talk” when presenting yourself to employers. Never claim something about yourself in your networking efforts, cover letters or resumes that you can not back up during a potential meet and greet or interview.
T – Are you scheduling your TIME?
As you work through your plan consider scheduling your time. Whether you are looking for full time or part time employment, your job search efforts should coincide with this. Schedule your week accordingly by making a schedule for when you will work through the various job search tasks. Some examples may include; making cold calls, networking events, drafting job specific cover letters and resumes, emailing, completing online applications, browsing through the help wanted ads, following up with employers, etc. By scheduling these activities into your calendar you will find yourself pulling ahead of the competition and therefore setting yourself up for success.
Help your clients swing into 2016 by making a S.M.A.R.T. Job Search Plan a part of your next client meeting!
Feel free to give your clients a link to this YouTube video as a reference point: https://youtu.be/-uuNQ5pIZ4I.
And while we are on the topic…have you set your own S.M.A.R.T. Goals for the new year?