Advice for trying to find a job

November 12, 2008 8:04:19 PM PST
No one relishes the title of job seeker. Ali Bodden was let go from her job at IBM a year ago. She's been searching ever since.

"Looking at things like this career fair, on line job positions register with unemployment, seminars and just not happening," she said.

Experts say many times the problem isn't what you're doing but how you're doing it. "If you're competing with all of these other people looking for a job, you have to go about it smarter than them," said David Schmier of GetHired.com.

When President-elect Barack Obama was looking for a job in Chicago, he came to the Mid-Manhattan Library's Job Information Center. A librarian helped him find lists of organizations. He wrote to them, and one eventually hired him. The library holds a wealth of resources at no cost.

"How to successfully prepare resumes and answer questions at job interviews and also on line resources for searching for jobs," senior librarian Alam LaRue said.

Research shows 70 percent of jobs are landed through networking or personal relationships, so going to job fairs is vital.

Experts say the key is to let people know what you're looking for, but never ask them to get it for you.

David Schmier calls it being a giver, not a taker "Send them an email with a link to an article they may like tickets to an event, invite them to be a panelist. If you're a member of a trade organization, invite them to come and speak to your group," he said.

A popular website for jobs is linkedin.com. Just by signing up you're ahead of the pack. Thousands of recruiters use it as their primary tool for finding candidates, but Tory Johnson warns the web can give you a false sense of accomplishment.

"I sit in front of the computer all day and send out 40 resumes. I feel like a million bucks. That's a whole lot of work I've done. The downside is waiting and hoping somebody is ready one of those resumes and often that's not the case," Johnson said.

Don't write off the good old fashion classified section. Just watch out for certain red flags. "Any kind of job posting that promise big bucks for minimal effort or any kind of postings that say no skills required stay away they are likely scams," Johnson said.

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