With the dicey economic climate these days, some of you are asking, “How do I get ready for a job search?” Maybe you’ve been thinking about a move. Or maybe you want to get ready in case you need to work your Plan B.
Here are 4 steps from my irreverent job search guide:
These steps may seem simple (or simplistic) to you. But I find many seasoned corporate executives haven’t thought about these things for years.
(1) Get a private email address.
Choose an ISP like gmail, which will (a) let nearly all of your “good” messages go through, (b) easily allow attachments, and (c) never send a “mailbox full” message.
Do not under any circumstance use your employer’s email account for any job-hunting activities – not even to receive an ezine or communicate with a career coach. Your employer has a legal right to read this email. Why take a chance?
And pay attention to the “from” section. I’ve gotten email from “JimandSusan” and “KoolKitty.” There’s no need to raise red flags among future employers. For only a few dollars, you can buy a private domain from godaddy.com. You don’t need a website. Won’t it be nice to put “email@example.com” on your business card, instead of “firstname.lastname@example.org”
(2) Set up a reliable phone system.
Teenagers and visiting relatives can tie up your home phone. Keep peace at home and avoid horror stories from your job search. Give out your cell phone number and don’t let anyone else answer your cell phone. Create a professional outgoing message for the duration.
(3) Get business cards with your own personal phone and home address.
You don’t need a job title, logo or fake company address. Keep them simple and professional.
(4) Find a confidante outside your family and circle of close friends.
Your personal support system is too important to risk. Naturally, being biased, I recommend hiring a pro. Being able to speak confidentially to an outsider can save your job, because you won’t be tempted to speak too openly or share too much info.