Finding the Perfect Job: How Long Will it Take?


Job seekers often find themselves wondering how long it will take to find the perfect job? Unfortunately, there is no easy answer. Some people manage to land their dream career immediately after graduating, while others toil away in unrewarding jobs for years before finally discovering the perfect job. The average job seeker spends nearly six months looking for a position. There are steps you can take to improve your chances of finding the perfect job quickly. Having a clear set of goals, a realistic plan of action, and the appropriate skills for your dream job can dramatically increase your job opportunities and chances of being hired.

The following steps can get you started on the path toward your perfect job.

1. Use career assessment to narrow your job search. The amount of time your job search will take depends on a lot of factors, including current demand and economic factors. One important aspect of your job search that is within your control is your career goals and plans. If you aren’t sure of your plans and have no clearly defined goals, your job search will take substantially longer. A career assessment can help you discover what you want in a career and can offer useful information about how to find the perfect job. A career assessment involves finding your interests, abilities, strengths, and weaknesses and using this information to decide which career would be best for you. Start by making a list of your interests and thinking of how you could apply these to a career. Personality tests and aptitude tests can also be useful to help you find a great job.

2. Make use of your network. A major source of opportunities lies easily within your reach—your own career network. Contact people who may be able to help you in your job search, including friends, family, and former co-workers. If your career network is small or limited, try reaching out to build your network. Join a professional organization and volunteer for positions within the group. Networking can lead to recommendations and access to job opportunities that you might not have been aware of previously.

3. Develop your job interview skills. All too often, job seekers find a great job, but fail to impress the hiring committee during the job interview. How can you avoid this type of disaster? Practice is the best way to prepare for a job interview. Start by making a list of questions that you expect the interviewer to ask. Now, ask a friend to “interview” you with your questions, but tell them to feel free to throw in a few unexpected questions. Preparing for the interview can help greatly, but surprising questions can be a major hurdle. Try your best to be unflappable and give the best response you can to these questions. If you feel prepared and confident for your job interview, you are far more likely to leave a favorable impression. What if you still can’t find the perfect job? If you have spend more that a year searching for a job, it’s now time to bring in the professionals. Contact a career counselor to get specific feedback on your job search technique, resume, and interview skills. A career counselor can offer guidance and support and help you to reevaluate your goals if necessary. Finding the perfect job may take some time and effort, but it will be well worth it.

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