Is Your Job Search Overwhelming? 3 key components to success

Is your job search overwhelming? 3 key components for success

A job search can be overwhelming and exhausting. Even just the idea of searching for a job can leave you feeling paralyzed. I believe an efficient and effective job search requires the preparation of three key components. These components are a comprehensive job search strategy, a well-crafted resume, and solid interview prep.

Prepare your 𝐉𝐨𝐛 𝐒𝐞𝐚𝐫𝐜𝐡 𝐒𝐭𝐫𝐚𝐭𝐞𝐠𝐲

In order to make the job search less overwhelming, before you do anything else, you need a strategy. What are the goals you have for your job search? I highly encourage you to build out a target list of 25 companies that you could envision yourself working at. Leverage your network for introductions at that target list. You need to be having conversations with decision-makers vs. applying for jobs and alerting the masses. Clients often tell me that it’s easy to identify the first 5 companies on the target list, but beyond that, it’s challenging. In this article career experts Biron ClarkMadeline MannTim WindhofMark Anthony Dyson, and Michelle Rademacher share their best advice on building a target company list. Suggestions that are practical, as well as out-of-the-box, are needed to build a list of 20-30 companies.

“You don’t need to apply via the job board; in fact, you’re much better off trying to reach the employer through your network or applying directly via email if you can’t get to them through networking.”

– Biron Clark, Career Sidekick

The hidden job market allows you to target your search and supercharge your job hunt. I had the opportunity to collaborate with the LinkedIn Learning team to create an actionable course. In my Hidden Job Market course, you can learn how to access the hidden job market by leveraging your job search strategy.

Craft a powerful 𝐑𝐞𝐬𝐮𝐦𝐞 to market yourself during your job search

This is the single most important marketing document– YOURS! A resume needs to tell your story in a powerful and succinct way. After you create a strategy for landing your next job, it is time to invest in a winning document to market yourself. A personally tailored resume that highlights your strengths is worth the investment, however custom resumes are now attainable on any budget.  

Crafting a winning resume does not have to cost a lot and doesn’t always require a professional writer. No one knows your story better than you. I co-founded a new marketplace, Job Search Journey, featuring 20+ of the top career experts in the world with over 150+ excellent resume templates and tools. We are striving to make the job search more equitable and keep job seekers from becoming overwhelmed by the process. I encourage you to check it out. I also created a few free videos on my YouTube channel to help you craft a targeted resume.

Don’t let preparing for your 𝐈𝐧𝐭𝐞𝐫𝐯𝐢𝐞𝐰 be overwhelming

Now you have your strategy, and you are armed with a winning resume – it is time to prep for the interview or networking conversation. For many, thinking about going to an interview can be an overwhelming piece of the job search process. Prepping for the interview can help tremendously. This is not just practicing your elevator pitch or reading the company website. Read recent press articles about the company, research the interviewer and try to find common ground, and study the job description and align how your strengths fit what they are looking for.

“Effective and thorough preparation is absolutely key to interview success. An unprepared candidate can be spotted a mile off and their lack of preparation will reveal a lack of interest in the role. Candidates that are unprepared always get caught out and sometimes even called out on their lack of interest.”

– Hannah Mason, The English Meeting Room

An interview is an opportunity to prove you are the best fit for the job. You also want to make sure the job and company are the best fit for you. It should be a two-way dialogue between the candidate and the interviewer. I had another opportunity to partner with the Linkedin Learning team and created a very comprehensive video on how to interview.

A job search will feel less overwhelming when these three components are fulfilled. A well designed job search strategy, a uniquely crafted and tailored resume, and interview aptitute and preparedness
3 components to a successful job search


  • Sarah Johnston

    I’m a former corporate recruiter and industry “insider” who got tired of seeing talented high-achievers get passed over for opportunities because they did not have the right marketing documents or know how to position themselves in interviews. I have relocated multiple times across the country as a “trailing spouse” and have had to execute job searches in completely cold markets (where I literally knew no one!) I have been named a LinkedIn Top Voice in the career space in 2019, HR Weekly’s Top 100 Most Influential People in HR, named the owner of the “best resume writing firm for experienced executives” by Balance Careers and a “top follow” by JobScan in 2019 and 2020.

Sarah Johnston

Sarah Johnston is a former corporate recruiter and industry "insider" with a passion for empowering high-achievers in their career journeys. Frustrated by talented individuals being overlooked due to ineffective marketing documents and interview strategies, Sarah made it her mission to equip professionals with the tools and knowledge to succeed. As a seasoned "trailing spouse" who relocated multiple times, she understands the challenges of executing job searches in unfamiliar markets. Sarah's expertise and impact have earned her recognition as a LinkedIn Top Voice in 2019 and a spot on HR Weekly's Top 100 Most Influential People in HR. Her resume writing firm has been acclaimed as the best for experienced executives by Balance Careers, while JobScan listed her as a top follow in 2019 and 2020.

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