The average length of time to find a new job will vary significantly depending on a number of factors; the industry, your level of experience, skills and where you live all play a part. Indeed reports it can take anywhere from two to six months to land a new position.
While it may be tempting to binge watch Netflix or bake even more banana bread after a hard day spent searching for a new job, we suggest taking on something that will help you show prospective employers what you have to offer and help grow your career.
Upskill - learn something new
Don’t just rely on past accomplishments to get you a new job especially if you’ve been looking for a few months. Upskill by reading a new book or article or taking a learning course – check out this list of learning courses, most are free.
Learning something new not only adds new skills to your resume, it gives you fresh topics to talk about in a job interview, making you seem resourceful and interesting.
Volunteer – put yourself to work
Where can you find a multitude of job opportunities? Almost every non-profit needs and wants volunteers. Even if you only have one hour a week volunteering is a great way to network, upskill and contribute to your community all at the same time.
Virtual volunteers are needed in many different areas including website design, consulting, finance, HR, IT, education, digital media and marketing. Click here for opportunities to make a difference.
Volunteering in a new industry has the added benefit of helping you switch industries, make a move to working with a non-profit or even start freelancing. Add this job to your resume or portfolio to showcase your new skills.
Freelance – share your expertise
Put yourself to work by offering your expertise as a freelancer. Most freelance jobs require existing expertise in a particular field to get started. It doesn’t need to be a long term commitment.
Using a job board like Upwork, LinkedIn ProFinder or Fiverr means you don’t need to spend time finding clients – jobs are posted and you submit a bid or brief proposal outlining your services and rates which gives you lots of flexibility with little to no start up costs.
Start a side hustle or small business – grow your skills
Start your own side hustle by getting paid to do something you love. This can be a bit more time consuming than freelancing and may require start up costs but doesn’t require much prior experience.
Let’s say you love baking or making jewelry and want to sell your products at a local farmers market. You would need to pay for the raw materials in advance before earning any revenue. You may also need a business license depending on the type of product you are selling. For inspiration, we love “How to Start a Business on Your Kitchen Table”by Shann Nix Jones.
Hard work, effort and persistence are all important strategies when searching for a new job but not as important as believing you are in control of your own destiny.
Having or adopting a growth mindset where you believe you can learn new skills or improve existing skills is the key to long term success.
This article is part of our Career Moves series; job search and career advice to help you land your dream job.
Arche helps people architect, navigate and advance their career path with expert advice and tools to support your job search, interview preparation, professional branding, salary negotiations, and career advancement.