“It was the best of times, it was the worst of times…it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair, we had everything before us, we had nothing before us….” So begins Charles Dickens in A Tale of Two Cities, set during the tumultuous French Revolution. Some would say we are experiencing similarly tumultuous times with the economy in disarray and job seekers attributing their chances of job search success to luck.
But what is job search luck after all? Is it really random? Certainly being in the right place at the right time matters; however, you do have to be out there networking (off line and online) and making contact in the “right places” to get noticed! There are other elements important to job search luck. The first element of L-U-C-K follows; subsequent posts will cover three more.
L – LEARNING
Learning comes in many forms. For example, there is continuous learning in your occupational field and industry to stay up-to-date and competitive. Learning about job trends and career management / job search techniques makes you savvy and speedy in making your next career move. Then there is learning from your mistakes which, by the way, is necessary for growth!
One more form of learning that is vital is learned optimism, a term coined by Dr. Martin Seligman and promoted in his book Learned Optimism: How to Change Your Mind and Your Life. Being optimistic and having a positive attitude will invigorate you and your job search with energy and effortlessly attract others to help you.
Here are some additional sources to generate positivity:
- 5 Ways to Make a Positive Attitude by Phil Gerbyshak in his Make It Great! blog. Phil’s 5 simple ideas are one way to get started building positivity in the face of daunting negative input from the world around you.
- Check out Gretchen Rubin and The Happiness Project which chronicles her year-long research into happiness for her upcoming book of the same name.
- Learned Optimism Test adapted from Dr. Seligman’s book by Stanford University. Take the 48-item online test to see just how optimistic you are.
- What Makes Us Happy? 20-minute video presentations at “The Pursuit of Happiness” TED conference in 2004.
Lifelong learning is a non-negotiable element in improving your job search luck. Think of it as a developmental tool for your career success that you continually need to sharpen and use. Bottom-line: companies do not hire dinosaurs (as in old knowledge or skills) or sour pusses!
Part 2: Understanding your assets (next installment)