Four Ways to Step Up Your Search During the Holiday Season

When I counsel clients on their job search during the holiday season, they often tell me that they plan to put their search on hold because they think that everyone is out of town and no one is hiring during this season.

Actually, December can be a great time to step up your search campaign because so many applicants believe this misperception of the market. When people drop out of the job market during the holiday season, there’s an opportunity for you to accelerate your search in a climate with decreased competition. Below are four ways to increase your visibility in 2007 to prepare for a more robust search in 2008.

Informational Interviews

Savvy job seekers know that the more visible they are, the greater the chances of meeting the person that can connect them with a viable job opportunity. This concept may be even more important when you are searching during the holiday season. Some job seekers make the mistake of taking a break from their search during December because they assume that no one is in the hiring mode. The reality is that holiday networking may be more productive than networking during other times of the year. Decision makers’ schedules are not as tight and they may be more generous with their time. By establishing relationships with the key players now, you are more likely to be remembered when the hiring picks up.

Family and Community Parties

Families and friends tend to make more of an effort to get together during the holiday season. Family and community gatherings are excellent opportunities to reconnect with old friends and hook up with new contacts. Schools, religious groups, health clubs, and support groups are just of few of the communities where holiday activities may be taking place. There is always a chance to share information relevant to these communities as well as information relevant to your personal and professional life at these events.

Business Functions

Most companies and professional associations host a holiday party in December. By attending a spouse’s company party or an event hosted by a professional organization, you can build powerful business connections in a relaxed and festive environment.

Holiday Cards

Holiday cards provide a natural “touch point” or opportunity to reconnect with friends, family, and colleagues. Reach out to your network now with some “best wishes” and holiday cheer and you will have a natural entrée into a job-related conversation in the New Year.

By establishing relationships during the holiday season, you increase the likelihood of making inroads with decision makers who may be hiring in the New Year. Hiring managers may be more accessible, more relaxed, and in a better frame of mind during the winter holiday season. Create a networking plan now to take advantage of the unique networking opportunities available during the month of December.