Tips for Breaking Out of a Job-Search Rut

Breaking Out of a Job Search Rut

A job search can quickly become a drag. All the toil and effort can make it seem like, well, a job. And just like slogging through a boring shift in a dreary position, looking for a new gig can quickly turn into a rut.

This treadmill sensation can become a problem. If you lose your enthusiasm for the search, you can start to lose your edge. Your chances of finding a great position drop significantly. Meanwhile, you're more likely to take a lackluster offer just to end the process.

For these reasons, it's important to break out of a job-search rut as soon as one starts to form. You have to take steps to reinvigorate your momentum and rejuvenate your ambition. Here are a few tips that will help you snap out of the doldrums and get back on track:

Review Your Situation

Any doctor looking to cure a disease will start with a diagnosis. You can't find the right remedy if you don't know what's wrong. That’s what you should do with your job search. Take a rigorous approach and look at the details of what has happened in your job search so far. It will help you delineate what has worked and what hasn't.

Have you been getting responses to your applications? Have those responses turned into interviews? Have you been getting offers, but just for the wrong situations? Finding the exact areas where things have broken down will help you fix the precise problems and improve your outcomes in the future.

Restart Your Search

Time to hit the reset button. If your job search has reached an impasse, it might be time to begin all over again. Scour the job boards again, especially ones you haven't checked in a while. Meanwhile, reengage your network. Even if you've touched base with your contacts in the past, give it another chance. Things may have changed since your last attempt.

The main lesson is to avoid telling yourself "well, I tried that already...there's no point." Obviously, you don't want to make the same mistakes twice. But review how you proceeded last time and restart your search with a better process this time around.

Hold Off on Resume Revisions

The resume becomes the usual suspect in any stalled job search. However, it’s not always the case. Blindly rewriting the document can lead to unnecessary work and, even worse, might leave your resume less effective.

Don’t rush into revisions. Take a more scientific approach, judging all aspects of your process. If you are getting interview offers or other signs of interest, your resume likely isn’t the culprit. Even if you have had problems in this initial stage, the problem might exist elsewhere. You might be applying to the wrong positions for your experience level. Or you might want to take a look at your cover letter.

Stay Positive

Your job search may have stalled, but that shouldn't dim your view of the future. Careers don't advance in a straight line. You’ll see times of significant growth, separated by spans dedicated to consolidation and routine. Don't let your initial inability to find your next opportunity get you down.

A negative attitude becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy. If you get down, your job search will become less effective. Or, worse yet, you might be tempted to give up. It's better to keep pushing forward, even if you have to force yourself to fake an upbeat and energetic mood. After all, it only takes that one right offer to turn your job hunt into a success. 

If your job search has really hit a wall, it might be time to bring in some professional help. A top-flight staffing firm, like United Personnel, will get you out of your rut and into an ideal position.

Contact United Personnel today to learn more.