Everyone knows that searching for a job can be a struggle. At no point during the year is this more starkly evident than during the holidays--there are gifts to buy, gatherings to attend, estranged friends and family to reconnect with, and, to top it all off, the sun is blessing your various commitments less and less every day.
For all these reasons and more, you might be tempted to think that this time of year is a good time to pump the breaks on the holiday job search. You’d much rather spend time with family than cast endless phone calls and emails into the unknown. Besides, companies aren’t hiring now anyway. It can wait until January. Right? Well...
As it turns out, by taking a break during the holiday season, you are actually missing out on several opportunities to find your dream job.
Here are 5 reasons why you should continue your job search through the holidays
1. There is Still Business to be Done
Ah, the holidays: comforter-thick fuzzy socks, cocoa around the fireplace, eggnog...naps. Everything in your environment beckons you to demand less of yourself and enjoy. The most ambitious and successful companies, however, know that there is still work to be done. They know that ideal candidates flicker and disappear these days, and by sitting on the sidelines until January, they are giving their competition opportunities to swoop in and steal their next game changer.
2. Efficient Onboarding
Businesses seeking to hire during the holiday season are frequently doing so out of dire necessity. Whether they’ve acquired new business or lost a power player, there are business-critical roles that must be filled before the new year. This means that if you meet a company's needs, there's a good chance you'll also enjoy a pleasantly streamlined onboarding process.
3. Less Competition
Fewer candidates applying for open positions means you will be in greater demand. It’s simple supply-and-demand economics. Furthermore, prospective employers will appreciate the fact that you are seeking to advance your career while your peers are seeking a second helping of apple pie.
4. Networking Opportunities
It’s the most wonderful time of the year--for networking.
Holiday parties and social events are the perfect time to connect with people who can help you in your job search. Remember, we're only six degrees removed from one another, and you might as well risk making an acquaintance while everyone is trying to be in good spirits. It's also increasingly likely that, since business is slower this time of year, hiring managers will have plenty of time to schedule an interview.
5. Avoid the Rut
If ever you've undertaken a task that required sustained and disciplined effort, you know that Newton's first law applies about as well to internal states of mind as it does external material objects. Running a few miles is easy if you've been doing it every other day for several months, but take a few weeks off (around the holidays, say, when it's cold and people keep planting pastries within arm's reach) and summoning the will to lace up the ASICS can feel like swimming through figgy pudding. Don't let up just because "it's an occasion." Momentum is hard-won and far too easy to lose.
6. Have a Happy New Year
While others are frantically searching for new job opportunities in January, you will be able to relax in the knowledge that you’ve already secured your future. With one less task on your New Year’s resolution list, you’ll be able to focus on getting back to the gym, spending more time with your family, or tinkering with that revolutionary gadget you’ve had in the basement for the last eight years.