The holidays tend to be child-centric, so let’s approach this with a little of the wonder and naiveté of a child.
When you were little, adults would frequently ask, “What
do you want to be when you grow up?” Depending on your age and your exposure to
different careers, you might have responded with what your parents did. “Oh, I
want to be construction worker, like my dad.” Or “I’m going to be a
veterinarian just like mom”. When you were very young and imaginative, you
might have thought that you a great potential as a triceratops. My nephew at
about five, informed the family that he was considering a career as one of
Santa’s elves. It was Christmastime and he had just seen the movie, Polar Express.
His parents voiced concern about how far away the North Pole was from their
home and the likelihood of him having to work during the holidays. He ultimately
made alternative career plans.
Another frequent question from adults to children,
specifically at this time of year, is “What do you want Santa to bring you for
Christmas?”. The answer to this can range widely with age, media influence, and
experience. Request can include bicycles, rockets, a triceratops (if you can’t
be one then try to get one) or a baby sister. When Santa is no longer
considered the principal provider, selections usually change to computers, game
consoles, and cars.
Now that you are grown up, the two topics could be
combined. So, what job do you want for Christmas.
What if you could ask Kris Kringle for that perfect
job? What if you plopped down on his lap and in your best Eartha Kitt voice said
“Santa baby, just slip a career under the tree. For me.”
But who goes looking for a job at Christmas or New
Year’s? Isn’t it better to wait until the second week of January?
If that’s what you believe, you may be getting your
career advice from the surviving partner of Scrooge and Marley or from a green
hued fellow who lives above Whoville.
The holiday season – from Thanksgiving through New
Year’s – offers unique opportunities to land work worthy of celebration. Here
are a few of the reasons that Christmastime may be the best time to hunt for a
The fact is many other jobseekers are taking a
vacation from their search. While they are on holiday, it is your opportunity
to shine, without as much distraction. When the pool of candidates is thinner,
hiring managers are more likely to overlook shortcomings in your
The holidays are times of good cheer. The tinsel and wreaths,
the menorahs (this isn’t sectarian) and outdoor skating rinks, can have very
positive effects on people. Charities see increases in donations at years end
in part because of these good feelings. Why not put yourself in line for some
of that goodwill.
People are looking to do good deeds at Christmas
(Hanukkah, New Year’s, etc.). They may be particularly open to helping someone
who is looking for job. They are also likely to be in contact with more people as
the end of the year approaches. Why not give them something to talk about?
Something like how they know this bright person who could be just who Uncle Mortimer’s
money factory needs.
Holidays are times for gathering and communicating.
They present great opportunities to share your search and your dreams. When
your cousin, who you haven’t seen in a year, asks what you have been up to,
share that you are looking to move on from your current job. Everyone who knows
that you are looking can become agents for you and your search.
Try to give these helpers clear ideas of what you are
looking for. People will provide more help if they have some direction. If you
are looking for work as an accountant, share that information. For all you know
his neighbor may be a partner in an accounting firm. If possible, try to be
even more specific. Let them know what it is about accounting that makes you want
to get up in the morning. Help them connect the dots. If you just say you’re
looking for a job but don’t inform them what you want, it is hard for them to
provide much help. Make it easy for them to help you. If you know of a specific
way that a person can help you, then say so. If you know their neighbor is a
partner in an accounting firm, then ask for an introduction.
List making is a common occurrence at Christmastime.
You make list of the things you want, of gifts you need to get for every
person, of ingredients you need for making a feast. To improve your odds of job
search success, here is a list of holiday job search ideas.
Have your à la carte resume menu ready to quickly customize a response to an available position. Find out all about a la carte resumes in Post Three of my “It’s Time to Put Your Resume to Work” series. Holidays are busy times. Be prepared. Don’t wait to get around to responding to these positions until after the holidays.
everyone that you are looking. Do this in a positive light. No Bah humbug about
how you work for Mr. Scrooge. Point up your desire to find work that lets you do
more selling, more writing, more speaking, more whatever-ING. Generic requests
get generic assistance. Your neighbor may not know what you do, much less what
you are passionate about.
your Christmas communications to connect with people who have been of help in
the past because they could be in the future. A well-crafted Christmas card or
even an email can reestablish a contact to be an ally. Besides aren’t holidays
about connecting with people who have been part of your journey?
can be a great way to network. When people who tend to volunteer see you
dedicating yourself to acts of generosity, they see you in a positive light. It
also expands your circle of influence. Don’t be a mercenary, but don’t miss this
great opportunity. Also remember volunteering can give you an outlet for skills
and stuff you want to do.
someone else who’s looking for a new career opportunity. Goodwill fosters
goodwill. Doing good for someone else can often be of service to you. Whether
it’s karma or holiday cheer or something to fill your time helping somebody
else can be one of the most valuable things you can do for holiday job search
Use any downtime during the holidays to get a grip on what you want and what it takes to get it. Figure out what additional skills can make a difference in your life. Sign up for a class now or in the new year to add something to your resume. Do a little soul-searching. Invest in a quality assessment, like CliftonStrengths (StrengthsFinder) and perhaps some coaching to better understand what makes you tick. Reach out to me if that is of interest.
Jobs are everywhere. Help wanted signs are as ubiquitous as Salvation Army kettles. Finding a job now is probably easier under the current economic conditions that has been the case for many a Christmastime. Businesses are looking to fill positions from stock clerks to vice presidents. However, the most important question for you this holiday season, is what do you really want. Finding those opportunities, finding your grown-up Christmas wish, still takes effort, planning, being nice not naughty and believing.
When is the best time to look for job? Make it this Christmastime!
Crews Strengths hopes that you have yourself a merry little job search. Every success to you and yours for a wonderful holiday and for a new year filled with success, prosperity, happiness, and fulfillment.
The suggestions and advice given in this article provides a lot of information to help you to find work you can love. Please let me know if you have found it helpful. To make sure others have access to this valuable information, please go back to this article in LinkedIn and like and comment on the actual post where the most people are likely to see it. Thanks for your kindness.
If you need help with your resume, your job search or in putting your Strengths to work, please contact Crews Strengths.