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Create a Job Search Game Plan


Employment & Learning

Landing the right job and finding fulfillment in your job requires planning, says Halifax-based Executive Recruiter and Career Coach Gerald Walsh. In his recent book Pinnacle Walsh asks clients to ponder some aspects of jobs such as compensation, vacations, workspace, boss, colleagues and opportunity for advancement. Then rank those aspects, to clarify what’s really important. It may seem difficult to define workplace values, but that’s also part of the planning process he recommends. Ponder values, whether with or without this list, determining which resonate the most with you. Pick the five most important, considering why each is important, and to what degree it is being met through your career choices. You can also review your work history, each and every job, to recall what you liked and did not. This will help you focus on what kind of position you want, and strategies to look for it.

You’ll be asked many questions in a job interview so its important to prepare and plan. First, all questions boil down into one of three categories: do you have the necessary skills to do the job; are you the right fit with our organization; and will you do what it takes to help us meet our goals and solve problems. They need to hear how you applied those skills to solve similar problems in the past. During job interviews, you need to be prepared to answer a range of questions covering education, work history, your level of interest in the company, knowledge of company, career plans, management style, strengths and weaknesses.

Similarly, prepare for behavioural questions, figuring out what questions you would ask a candidate given the job posting. “You can predict 80 per cent of the questions and so nothing should take you off guard,” Mr. Walsh insists. Your responses should be framed around what he calls the PAR formula: You need to explain the problem you were dealing with in the past, describe the actions you took, and recount the positive result. It’s wise to use the interview time for answering your own needs, because they are an excellent opportunity to see if you share the values of the organization and the organization shares your values as well.

Mr. Walsh believes people have a right to be happy in their jobs: “Don’t give up. You can find something you like,”  By creating a game plan you will achieve success in your job search and career by giving it a better focus on outcomes.

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This was based on an article by Harvey Schachter at The Globe and Mail. You can find the complete article here: