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Job Search TO DO List / Action Plan

  1. Create an excellent 30 second commercial.
    • Describe the benefits of buying the "product" (you) in 30 seconds. Answer the questions: "what problem(s) can you solve?" or "why should I hire you?" or "how can you benefit my company?"
  2. Create a target list of companies.
    • Make a list of who is buying the "product" or to whom you are going to offer the "product." Have a minimum of three target companies you can name specifically.
  3. Create a Marketing Plan
    • List targeted positions (specific job titles)
    • List targeted companies (specific names)
    • List relevant skills and abilities you possess that can solve an employer's problems
    • Create your "branding statement" – this is a combination of your skills and your style. For example: "low key technical expert"..."hard charging HR problem solver"..."sophisticated executive coach"..."multi-lingual administrative assistant"
  4. Create a business card
    • Professional look with contact information and industry type.
    • Create your own or order through VistaPrint – www.vistaprint.com.
  5. Create a thorough, master resume.
    • Never use it though. Pull what you need for specific positions from the master copy to create a tailored, narrowly targeted resume for specific job applications.
  6. Create a tailored, focused resume for each of your job targets.
    • Demonstrate you are a good fit for the job!
    • No more than 2 pages or 20 years of history for each targeted position
    • Do not use the phrase, "Responsible for..."
    • Make sure each action statement has results/metrics. Quantify any measurable results wherever possible. E.g. "...which resulted in the company saving $XX, or improving efficiency by XX%." Use numbers, percentages, dollar amounts, lengths of time, rankings, etc.
  7. Write interesting, compelling cover letters.
    • Write concisely and professionally. One page only. Grab the employer’s attention and show that you are exactly what they need!
  8. Contact EVERYONE in your network about your job search.
    • Does everyone know you are looking for a job AND know what you offer?
    • Contact: neighbors, doctors, dentist, clergy, hair stylist, accountant, fellow congregants, fellow alumni, old work buddies, former bosses, anyone you buy a service from, everyone you have activities with, etc.
  9. Learn how to network properly.
    • Prepare a script.
    • Practice!
    • Keep accurate records of all your contacts and meetings – this is critical.
  10. Commit to spending time.
    • Minimum 3 hours per day, either on the phone or in front of people and not just on the computer.
  11. Write handwritten thank you notes.
    • Send within 24 hours after both networking and regular interviews – this will help you present yourself as a polished professional with good business etiquette.
  12. Join LinkedIn and know how to use it (www.linkedin.com).
  13. Practice interviewing.
    • Be prepared to answer behavioral questions. Remember the key is to use SAR: Situation Action Result.
  14. Negotiate!
    • Know the minimum salary/wage amount you will accept to go to work for someone, and learn how to negotiate properly.
  15. Accept contract/project work.
    • This is the future of work life and will help reduce gaps in employment while increasing your knowledge base and your professional network!
  16. Stay positive!
    • Maintain a positive attitude and outlook. People will be drawn to your positive energy!
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