Don't Just Find a Job, Find the RIGHT Job

Are you someone who loves job searching and is always on the lookout for a new and shiny possibility? Or maybe you find job searching overwhelming and it's easy for you to get lost in all that possibility? Either way, it's possible you've fallen into the void and lost sight of the goal: finding a job that will be good for you and help you grow.

They say job searching is a full-time job in itself, and we're inclined to agree. It requires a lot of time, focus, and energy. So, if you're going to be putting your valuable energy into job searching, make sure you're focusing it in the right ways so you don't accidentally derail the search. The most common ways we've seen job searches go off the rails include:

  1. You disappear down the rabbit hole of research, clicking on links, "seeing what's out there"...and you don't make any decisions.

  2. You spend too much time prepping, organizing, and tracking, without actually applying. Maybe you miss deadlines, postings time out on you, or the position has been filled by the time you get around to applying.

  3. You get excited about all the possibilities, and convince your creative self that you can and want to do all the things. In the end, you end up wasting time applying for jobs that are not right for you or not a good option at that time.

  4. You spam the job boards with little consideration for what will actually be a good match.

Does any of this sound familiar? Well, we hope not. But in our experience 'Yes' is more in that case, how do we get things back on track?

  1. Examine yourself and your priorities. A job search is nothing but setting a goal. However, you can't successfully set a goal without knowing exactly what you want out of it. This one can be tricky, because often as artists we follow the passion. Sometimes, though, finding what's best means considering things other than the passion. This is where a good old-fashioned list or journal can come in super handy. You can also check out our worksheet here.

  2. Understand how you work best. Think about the role you often take when working in groups, and the things you do to set yourself up for success. Think about how you like to apply your skills and talents to the team. Do you work well under pressure and strict deadlines, or are you more of a marathon runner? This should all weigh in to the choices you make when applying for jobs.

  3. Make a list of what you want in your next job. The things that are non-negotiable should be at the top. For example, if you’re a performer and you want something part-time so you can keep performing, that’s a non-negotiable. If you’re a stagehand and want something where you can work flexible hours because you’ve built a life around that, make sure it's at the top. Prioritize what you need and do not undersell yourself. Next, address the things that would be nice underneath, but that you can compromise on such as higher pay or additional benefits. Maybe you would like something full-time but would accept a contract job. Last, list the things you will not accept. Set some firm boundaries to protect your needs. It's not selfish, it's honest. Trust us, it'll be better for everyone in the long run.

  4. Dedicate time to each step of the process. Research job titles that relate to what you want to DO. Make a list. Find companies that match your goals and have good reviews. Make a list. Search for jobs that combine A & B. And, you guessed it...make a list. Then apply for them immediately, before they close or the search is over. Create a schedule to make sure your applications get done. How many jobs do you plan to apply to per day? 3? 10? 20? Be reasonable and allow yourself enough time to make sure each job application gets individual focus.

See? Searching for the right job is exhausting! So, like everything else we do, we need an intentional plan and healthy boundaries so it doesn't become a burden. No one wants to start a new job already burnt out from the search.

If you're looking for more personalized job search coaching, Out of the Arts has your back - book a counseling session now!