For some, 2010 was a year best forgotten. Unemployment, underemployment, taking what one could get to put food on the table and pay the mortgage or rent was the norm. For others, worrying about whether their hours or jobs would be cut were ever-present concerns.
Although January 1, 2011 won’t radically change the economic or employment outlook, it can be a time for you to regroup and actively seek employment, whether you’re moving from an old position into a new one or you’re going back into the work force.
Some experts believe that temp and contract jobs will dominate in 2011. What does that mean for you?
Use Every Opportunity You Can
If you take it as a positive, a temp or contract position allows you to earn a living while still actively seeking permanent employment. It also gives you a ‘foot in the door’, so to speak, at a company that might not otherwise consider your application.
While on your temp position, treat it as permanent. That is, show the employer that you care what happens during your watch. You’re there not just to get a paycheck but to make certain that you help your employer make money or save money.
Ask for the more difficult assignments. Volunteer to do tasks others wouldn’t consider. Learn all that you can about the industry and position. Even if that employer doesn’t retain you after your contract expires, you have additional skills to bring to your next boss. By building upon what you know and what you can do, you’ll make yourself indispensible to a company. And you need to reflect that on your resume.
Paint Yourself as the Perfect Candidate
Make certain that each of your resumes is individualized to the company where you’re applying. Don’t make the mistake of using a cookie-cutter approach, hoping that one resume will fit all situations.
You have to prove, within 7 seconds or less, that you’re the ideal candidate for the position. The only way to do that is to dovetail what you know and what you can do within the resume’s opening summary.
Rather than looking at the downside of the economy and the job market, make it work for you. Use that temp or contract position as your stepping stone to a permanent position, a raise, more authority and the dream job you deserve.