Career Coaches can spend half of a good day encouraging people to use the internet for job searching, and the other half telling them to turn it off. Like Cajun cooking, loud music and sunshine, too much of a good thing is too much. Once a person knows how to LinkIn, Facebook, Google and navigate a few job boards, what was once intimidating becomes a comfortable bad habit. Comfortable, so it becomes part of the routine; bad, because it is not especially effective in and of itself. When looking for new work, for clients to sell to or for ways to get ahead, setting boundaries can be as important as setting goals.
Set a time boundary. During summer vacation, my dear Grandma Desi takes care of a houseful of grandchildren and has only a few tough rules, including, “No TV until 3:00.” To a kid, this is agonizing. For about ten minutes. And then, suddenly, there are all kinds of adventures to be had. Setting a time boundary on internet use can lead you to find all kinds of ways to look for work. Set a purpose boundary. It’s easy to get carried away online. The internet is a tool, a means to an end. It is an excellent way to discover new jobs and read about organizations, but people rarely receive a job offer, and should never accept one, without meeting the new boss in person. So why wait? Improve your odds of being hired by regularly meeting people face to face. Use the scheduled online time to find job fairs and industry events to attend, and to make appointments to meet people.
Set a results boundary, and stretch it. Repeating the same activities day after day will bring you the same results, day after day. No one has to settle for more of the same, so visit a new website, change up a few search words and suddenly new opportunities to meet people in person will present themselves.
Stay one step ahead of the competition during your job search by staying focused, staying balanced and keeping the internet in its place.