Why are you waiting to update your resume? Are you thinking you are stable at your job? That can only update your resume right before you send it out? Are you waiting to practice interviewing until you have an interview time on your calendar?
If so, you are too late!
Let me explain...
If you wait until you are laid off or actively seeking a job, you are selling yourself short in a variety of ways. First, you are not adding valuable information to your resume in real time, thereby forgetting important details, such as the topic you presented, the old and new software you worked with, and the training you completed. You are missing portions of valuable work experience which set you apart from other employees. A company knows what your general job description looks like. Yet, they have no idea how you have made the position yours, by adding the personal touches only you provide to personalize your role. Secondly, you are not tapping into the hidden job market, networking, thereby passing up what could be your dream job. Everyone is always in the market, unless you own your own company. Even then, there could be enough of an offer to potentially interest you. You cannot explore opportunities if you are not refreshing on paper, thereby reinforcing, your strengths to yourself. Think about it.
Like anything else, interview practice takes time. It takes a lot of effort, rehearsal, and practice. You won't get the luxury of time, if you are scrambling to meet with a job coach the day before your interview. You are already going to be nervous, and are not going to be focused enough to absorb all the information about the company, the position, and how to most effectively answer questions.
I have seen people from entry level to C-level make the same mistake, time and time again.
The last minute is too late! If you wait until the car is empty to fill up with gas, you're going to be pushing it to the nearest gas station. And where I'm sitting, in South Florida in July, that just doesn't seem pleasant. Refuel. Give yourself a little bit of time. Stop scrambling. You will make a better impression!
I can be a lot of things to a lot of people. I have been a career coach, therapist for high level candidates who have been laid off after 15+ years in their C-level roles, and I have written hundreds of thousands of resumes in my career. However, what I cannot do is tell you what you want to do when you grow up. My mind reading skills are really poor (I have not won the lotto yet!)
I can guide you towards specific goals based on your interests and strengths. I can share suggestions on ways to get on a career path and keep the wheels turning so you can get better opportunities in the future. However, I am incapable of telling you what to do, what you will love, and what you will hate. I wish I were able to do such a thing.
As a child, you may have wanted to be a doctor, astronaut, or fire fighter. Perhaps, a ballerina or a trapeze artist. One day, you realized the schooling was too expensive or too long. Or that (in my case), I was never going to be a professional dancer because of my propensity to walk into walls!
In my career, nobody says: "I went to school to be a recruiter" or "I wanted to be a recruiter since I was a kid." Recruiting is a role that people fall into.
The advice I can give you is to know your interests, strengths, and limitations. Be honest with yourself! If you don't want to complete 10 years of postgraduate education, becoming a doctor is not going to be for you! That doesn't mean there are no jobs in the medical field waiting for you today. With proper guidance and an honest assessment of your passion, you can quickly be on the road to a successful career journey!
I love driving a certain route to work in the morning. It is not the most direct route, nor the quickest. However, on this route, I will likely see someone who will brighten my day, without even getting out of my vehicle. Having a brief interaction with this person makes me smile, and gets my day started on the right foot.
Who am I excited to see? Read below to find out.
I dread Wednesday mornings! Mornings are convoluted enough, making sure we are out of the house on time, with lunches in hand, and ready to kick off another day in the middle of the week. Wednesdays are the day that my housekeeper (who I pay well) may or may not decide to come to the house. I wait somewhat anxiously, having cleared off the countertops, wondering if I will need to track her down, if she will be on time, or if I will wait until one of her relatives eventually calls, usually 20 minutes after I expect her, to advise me that she is sick/has an unexplained emergency, or otherwise cannot get there.
Who is the stranger who sets my day right? He is a garbage collector, on the side of the road, who stops, just for a moment to wave and smile, wishing me a good morning. He has a great attitude, even though he has a dirty job, cleaning up garbage that others have left on the road without concern. He is a government employee, and likely is not making a whole lot of money.
Meanwhile, an employee who I pay more per hour than I made 3 years out of a Masters program, who also cleans someone else’s garbage, is not able to advise me when she is or isn’t going to be showing up. And when she loses the gig at my house and wonders why, I hope it is clear to all of my readers: she lacks work ethic. This is someone who does not take responsibility for her job. Many job seekers out there feel entitled to keeping their job, and never go above and beyond the minimum expectation for your job requirements. That will get you fired/laid off/excused/outsourced, or any other number of words meaning that you will not have a job.
Be the guy on the side of the road: go a step beyond! You won’t regret it!