Don’t Be A Job Search Turkey!

job search turkey, Dawn RasmussenThanksgiving is upon us, and while most people’s thoughts turn to the annual feast and associated family gatherings, it’s important to remember that for job seekers, their search continues on.

For them and anyone else contemplating changing job, it is important to know that there are certain things that shouldn’t be done to avoid being labeled a “turkey.”

Here are some tips to think about to keep your reputation intact as you look for work:

1) Always thank those that help you. Whether you get a job or the lead that was provided to you turns out to be a dud, never EVER forget who went out of their way to provide assistance to you. It may not work out the way you hoped now, but don’t punish the person who gave that helping hand. If you don’t thank them, you’ll be a TURKEY.

2) Include a reason why you want to connect. The biggest complaint regarding networking websites like “LinkedIn” from users is that they are frequently bombarded by people that they don’t know who request to connect. These users aren’t opposed to connecting; the real problem is that the person making the request doesn’t take the time to include a reason why they want the connection in the first place. If you don’t make an effort to actually CONNECT intellectually with the person on LinkedIn in order to build a meaningful relationship, you’ll be a TURKEY.

3) Ask permission to list someone as a reference. Has this ever happened to you: You get a phone call from an employer who is checking references for a contact or a friend. But you weren’t expecting that call, and end up backpedaling a few times during the conversation, searching for something to say since this call just took you by surprise. But imagine a different scenario: the person being screened actually called you ahead of time, requested your permission to list you as a reference, and gave you the “scoop” on the job for which you are applying. Much better presentation, don’t you think? Failing to get permission to list someone as a reference means that you’ll be a TURKEY.

4) Focus on the positive things you accomplished at previous companies. Badmouthing any employer can be cathartic in the immediate present, but in the end, the only person your words hurt will be yourself. How you discuss former workplace can be very telling to potential employers about how you’ll be talking about them someday. Saying bad things about previous employers means that you’ll be a TURKEY.

5) Be open and positive to opportunity. It’s easy to be discouraged during a job search because you’ll get a TON of rejection. It’s not personal; it’s simply how the universe works. Keep an open mind and no matter what, don’t let this rejection get you down in the dumps. Sure, it’s okay to have a pity party from time to time, but you need to bounce back and keep hope alive no matter what. Shutting down and turning off means that you’ll be a TURKEY.

Thanksgiving is a time for us to think about what we have thankful for, and by remembering what being a turkey means in a job search, you can be thankful that you have a positive outlook towards your future!

Here’s some other great Thanksgiving-related job search advice:

“A Thanksgiving Day Treat: The Turkey, and Sweet Gratitude” from Amy Adler – Five Strengths Career Experts

“The Perfect Holiday Job Search Recipe” from Rosa Vargas – Executive Resume Service


Amy L. Adler

Exceptional advice, as usual. I particularly like #3, which explains why people need to ask permission and even advise potential references BEFORE the calls for good recommendations go out. So often job seekers wrongly assume that their references will welcome calls and know exactly what to say.


Rosa Vargas

Hey Dawn

Excellent post! So true. So many job seekers think the holiday is a time to STOP and abandon the job search. While some R & R is a good thing, the holidays is the perfect time to re-energize and capitalize on opportunities others are letting go by. You have also given them great steps to job search.


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