The day you start a new job is the day to begin planning for the next one, say experts. Such advice may sound pessimistic and even betray a lack of confidence in one’s own abilities, but it reflects a level of truism. Shutting out the job market may mean missing out on important opportunities for career growth. Worse, you could find yourself stranded if circumstances forced you to quit your current job.
Irrespective of whether you are happy or not in your existing job, there are major advantages to keeping your eyes and ears open for new employment opportunities.
You may become a victim of restructuring and cutbacksThe global economy might be inching back towards normalcy after the recent financial meltdown but restructuring and cutbacks remain a way of life in the corporate world. The growing scarcity of resources, coupled with increasing competition, means businesses are constantly forced to reform and streamline to remain competitive. This means that your job is constantly on the line—along with everybody else’s at the company. Layoffs are a persistent threat in any corporation and it helps to be prepared should the axe fall on you.
Changes at the top may not bode well for youAcquisitions, takeovers, mergers and demergers are various ways in which corporations reinvent themselves to rationalize costs or add to profits. Such decisions, while they are taken at the very top, have an impact on all the company’s employees. As a result, a steady job today could become a shaky one tomorrow. If you’ve kept your ears to the ground, you’ll get a head start on the job hunting process, when the time comes.
It’s a great way to networkIf you’re called in to meet a potential employer, make sure you meet up, even if you’re not looking for a change. Networking is an important means of career growth, and applying to jobs and turning up for interviews will help you get to know key people in your industry, if nothing else. You may be unwilling to switch companies at the time of meeting the hiring manager, but when the time does come and you’re ready, you’ll have access to the relevant people. Stay in touch with them and enter into discussions when the time is right. If you’ve managed to impress them enough, on the other hand, they might just make you an offer that is too good to refuse!
It keeps you abreast of industry developments Sometimes, being employed with one company for a long span of time comes with the accompanying danger of being shut out from the latest developments taking place in your sector. Scanning advertisements and sending out applications regularly will keep you informed of industry movements and the skills you need to develop to stay relevant in the job market. In addition, it will also give you a sense of what demand there is for someone with your skills and experience as well as the salary you can expect were you to leave the company.
You can practice your interviewing skillsInterviewing for a job can be quite an ordeal, but it gets easier with practice and a little practical advice. If you find a job opening that interests you, apply. Turning up for job interviews even when you are not actively looking for a job will polish your interview skills and serve as preparation for crucial ones later.
Lulled into complacency in our existing jobs, most of us rarely spend any time scouring the job market when we are not actively looking for a change. But being proactive about a job search has several advantages and may even help you make the career move of your dreams.
Kickstart your job search today! #FindBetter here