By Sean Weinberg
Graduating college may be satisfying, but it sure is stressful. With today’s economy/job market the likelihood of finding a job that you are qualified for is pretty slim. I don’t mean that you probably aren’t qualified, I mean that you are most likely over-qualified and under-utilized.
And that’s if you can even find a job.
Here’s the good news: with a solid resume you've perfected (using a service such as RezScore), a proactive attitude, and a willingness to put in your time doing things you probably could’ve done without the years spent in college, you should be okay.
There are several options you have if you can’t find the job you really wanted right away:
Sure, you’ve already done an internship or four and a lot of internships do not pay or pay minimally, but it just might be the way to get your foot in the door. It’s more experience and a great way to network within your field.
Or Starbucks, or Barnes & Noble, or any restaurant. It’s better for you to have been working somewhere that has nothing to do with what you want than to not be working at all. You want to show that you didn’t take “time off” and that you are productive even if it’s not in a way you prefer to be.
Now is the time to hit up all of your contacts and friends and friends’ parents and old teachers and anyone you can think of. Let everyone know that you are looking for a job and what you can do. It’s also the time to use your existing networks to contact new people. Find the boss for a job you are interested in on LinkedIn and contact them for an informational interview. If you are part of your school alumni network, definitely take advantage and reach out to people who have literally been in your shoes.
4. Take classes.
This isn’t necessarily the most practical of choices because classes cost money. What’s good about them is that you can gain skills that might give you a leg up on the competition, you’re staying busy, and you can use the opportunity to network. The advantage of such a bad economy is that more and more people and small businesses are open to bartering. If you’re great at event planning, put together that anniversary party for a Photoshop class. Use what skills you do have to gain the ones you want.
5. Start a business.
This may be the hardest of your options, but it will be the most effective. You are good at something. You know it and I know it (okay, I’m kind of trusting you on this one). Use your skill and market it. I have a friend who has always planned events for her friends and family. She came up with a name, created a website, and started charging people. She already had a clientele base from her previous events and through word of mouth she slowly started to grow. She now has a thriving business doing what she loves and she’s great at it.
While one of these options may work better for you than another, there is an underlying theme to all of it: STAY BUSY, STAY PRODUCTIVE.
Have you done something while looking for your ideal job that ultimately led to a job?
Sean Weinberg is the COO and co-founder of RezScore, a free web application that reads, analyzes, and grades resumes – instantly. Also the founder of Freedom Resumes, Sean has dedicated his career to helping job seekers write the best possible resumes.