Job hunting is exhausting and, often, discouraging. Competition can be stiff — and sending off hundreds of resumes into the dark abyss that is the internet, in the hopes that someone will open it and call you in for an interview, can take what feels like forever.
For some, it takes months. One FBG'er under the name [email protected] took to the FGB Community to share her own story of job hunting for six months.
"Ladies, I am very pleased to announce that after more than six months of tirelessly applying, searching, interviewing, receiving numerous rejections, blood, sweat and (many) tears, I have finally landed a new job!" she writes. "Along the way, I had to reevaluate what was really important to me. Please note my earlier post about being in a toxic work environment. In the past, I had a tendency to jump from one toxic work situation to the next. For one thing, I was so desperate to leave a bad situation that I didn't notice that I was jumping into another toxic work environment. Secondly, I focused too much on money and not enough on culture. Finally, I decided the industry was partly to blame and tailored my job hunt toward a different industry."
In her interviews, she says she asked tons of questions about company culture and work-life balance, and she focused her inquiries on how employees felt coming to work.
"I had five interviews with this company before they finally made an offer to me," she says. "When asked what my expected salary was, I thought long and hard about what was (is) truly important to me. I thought about all the perks, culture and atmosphere I loved about this company. I threw out a number that was on the modest end of what I wanted. They offered me the job. I start next month and I couldn't be happier!"
StillClimbin[email protected] also acknowledges that there are so many other women in her shoes.
"I feel there are SO many women out there dissatisfied with their current job who need a career change but are unsure how to go about doing so," she says.
That's why she goes on to share the lessons she learned in her half-year job hunt with the community. Here's what she had to say.
1. Finding a job takes time.
"You have to apply for a lot of jobs," she says. "You will get a lot of rejection notices. Most companies don't even have the courtesy to respond that you didn't get the job. You will think you are a loser. It is an emotional roller coaster. People kept telling me to hang in there, it will get better. I didn't believe them. But they were right! Believe in yourself. It will happen!"
Other FGB'ers are chiming in on the discussion in agreement.
"It's always been said the hardest job is finding a job especially when you're unemployed," writes Tamiam. "Because when you are working, everybody wants to hire you... It's very hard to keep looking for jobs when you've been turned down so many times —I'm proud of you for not giving up."
They all seem to understand the struggle.
"Congratulations on your success—it can be a long and hard road, but you showed you had the perseverance needed to achieve your goals," says LadyPele. "Well done!"
2. Asking for help is OK.
"Get help," she advises. "A career coach is an excellent investment. Shop around and find someone that you like and can afford. You may only have to meet with them a couple of times, but they can help you figure out what you want and how to get it."
3. Keep an open mind.
"Diversify," she says. "When I first started my job hunt, I applied for all the jobs I thought I wanted, administrative manager, inside sales, project manager. However, after applying for supply chain analyst roles, I found those were the call-backs I was getting. Find out what recruiters see in you, not necessarily what you thought you could do best."
Again, other FGB'ers agree that that the job hunt is difficult and can bring you down.
"This is amazing! I have been searching since February and you totally understand how depressed someone gets after putting so much effort into interviewing and then its always a no," writes Liz Bui. "Congrats on this, and I hope you have found your forever home!"
4. Make time for yourself.
"Plan to do things just for yourself that have absolutely nothing to do with networking or job searching," she concludes.
You have to look inward, FGB'ers add.
"Congratulations for doing the inner work and shining your light!" says Jackie Ruka.
AnnaMarie Houlis is a feminist, a freelance journalist and an adventure aficionado with an affinity for impulsive solo travel. She spends her days writing about women’s empowerment from around the world. You can follow her work on her blog, HerReport.org, and follow her journeys on Instagram @her_report, Twitter @herreport and Facebook.