How to Find a New Job in the New Year

It’s human nature. We look for change in our lives most during two times in the year:

1) On our birthdays

2) At the beginning of a new year

They are both wake-up calls that basically say, “What are you doing with your life?!” And since 70% of Americans hate their jobs, there is a good chance you do, too. So a worthwhile new year’s resolution for you should be to get a new job.

I’ve had good luck finding jobs. And guess what? Every single job I’ve had I got because I knew the right person. That’s why this post doesn’t focus on lame-o job boards. It’s about meeting face-to-face with people and letting them know you can solve their problems.

In a former life, I was a head hunter. One of the first things I was taught was that a person should rarely (if ever) apply to job boards. Usually the resume falls through the cracks and doesn’t ever get noticed – until the day you call HR. You call HR to see if they’ve received your resume and if they have any questions. They see you submitted it a month ago. The HR person will assume that since they have you in their database but no one has contacted you, they are not interested. You will get the cold shoulder.

Note: With most large companies, you’ll need to apply via their electronic application system at some point.


Here’s how to actually find a new job in the new year:

Finding a new job: The first step is the hardest

We all know that lots of people hate their jobs but few people are willing to take that step into the unknown. It’s darkness compared with the comfortable ‘easy’ salary you are currently receiving. It’s important to make the decision that you will find a new job. Jump in with both feet. If you only kind of want a new job, you’ll sit in apathy for years to come.



People you already know

Compile a massive list of everyone you know and call them. When you call a person, it’s harder for them to blow you off. Start networking even if you’re a teenager trying to increase your income.

Meet new people

Use social networking tools such as LinkedIn to network with professionals in the same industry. When you request an invitation, let them know that you admire their work history. You want to get to know them better. Offer to buy them a coffee or lunch sometime. If that $20 lunch gets you a job, I’d say it’s a pretty darn good investment. And you never know, even if that meeting doesn’t lead to a job right now, it may help you out in other unexpected ways.

When I was in college, I noticed that successful people love talking about themselves. And I loved hearing their stories. I frequently set up informational interviews. They are easier to arrange than any other type of in-person meetup. You just meet at their office and ask them about their career. This way, they got their ego inflated – but more important, I got to know them better. This would ultimately lead me to ask them what kind of jobs they knew were available.


Questions to Ask Your Network

1. Who do you know who’s looking to hire? Don’t ask ‘if’ ask ‘who’. This will make them think harder. By asking ‘if’, you’re giving them an opportunity to blow off your question.

2. When looking at my profile/resume do you see any skills I’m lacking? Get them to admit your flaws. Constructive critism will help you.

3. Who should I know? What are their direct phone numbers?


Often, companies go on a hiring spree in the new year. That’s what I’ve always heard and observed. Now is your time to get happy with your career. Good luck.



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  1. James says:

    Will – I think if you are applying you need to both apply via job boards and then make an effort to reach out and contact people in person. A lot of companies can’t make offers unless their applicants have a resume in their corporate hiring system – its a bit irrational sometimes but that is the way it is.

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