I can’t believe that summer is almost over, with the unofficial end of the season next week with Labor Day. The shorter days and cooler temps also mean that search committees and recruiters are now more diligent in finding just the right candidate for their openings. By all indications, despite the lack of robustness in the economy, association hiring is on the surge during the second half of 2011 and should be a better opportunity for those who are searching for new employment.
It is also timely and a great opportunity for those looking to fill positions. With outstanding candidates readily available and with frustrated college graduates chewing at the bit to commence their careers, there is certainly a plethora of very capable individuals for recruiters and search committees to engage.
For those individuals who have had difficulty impressing decision-makers during the summer months, fall is a golden opportunity to get the word out that you are still available and that you are still willing to consider joining the team. Once the kids are back in school and the vacations are all but over, it seems organizations become more serious in filling voids in their rosters. For most organizations, the fiscal year ends with the calendar year and it behoves them to get their operations in order, in plenty of time before the start of the new year.
As a job seeker, it is your time to get your act together, unless you prefer sitting out another cold winter at home. Consider the following actions to stimulate your job search:
* Fall means business and education meetings. Make sure you are attending as many of these events as possible. It is good for your colleagues to see you in action and ready to take on a new assignment. Who knows, there might be someone attending that has a lead for you.
* Keep working your contacts and sources on LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook. Though the right position is hard to find on these sites, by being obvious to all your friends and connections the last thing that can happen to you is that you will be forgotten. Like any product or service, you need people to remember your name and comment positively about you.
* Make sure you are engaged with the specialty job boards that can pinpoint just the right position for you. In the association community – CEO Update and ASAE Career Headquarters are great places to start. The Ladders and other similar job sites can be helpful but they are basic duplicates of the specialty sites.
* Recontact the “headhunters” who just might have a position for you. Obviously, you are not their client but if you can make their life easier by possibly being just the right candidate for an opening – they will be most grateful. Don’t be a pest but yet on the other hand don’t give up either. Most of these people are overworked and aren’t always available to answer your call or e-mail. Be persistent and if you don’t get a response after 2 or 3 attempts – move on.
* How is your network performing for you? Are you consistently adding new people daily to your list of potential contacts? Do not live on your past laurels – meet and engage new people that can assist you in finding just the right new position. Remember it is a two-way street; you must also be available to assist a contact in their hour of need.
* Finally, you have to eat don’t you? Make lunch appointments with individuals who might be able to open doors for you. Obviously the setting doesn’t have to be over-the-top. You might even offer to bring a sandwich in if the contact can’t get away from the office. Keep good records because these expenses are tax-deductible come year-end.
All the employment experts are expecting a better fall than the first 3 quarters of 2011. Those individuals who were waiting out the recession to improve their retirement bounty have given-up and are now ready to find their next, new golf course or fishing hole. This is an opening that you must not let pass by. For every $10,000 salary you can expect a month of searching – for many that time is now.
Use these next few weeks to reinvigorate your efforts and the results may surprise you. The kids are back in school so it is now time for you to start a new stage of your career as well. Good Luck!
Dan Borschke is a Certified Association Executive (CAE) who has been a CEO for 3 distinct trade associations in his career. He is one of only 230 Association Executives worldwide who has been granted the prestigious designation of Fellow (FASAE) by the American Society of Association Executives (ASAE). He currently is between positions and has taken the opportunity to author more than 75,000 words or 125 blog postings on the topics of job search, career transition and association management.
Copyright: MMXI. Reprint of this article is permitted if the above paragraph is included.