Job Hunting in
Tough Times

When job hunting, think about what it will take to apply and interview for a job-and what the employer will expect from both a job candidate and an employee:

  • Have all the paperwork necessary to complete an application and have a neat, easily reviewed resume handy.
  • Make certain that you have a reliable way of getting to work. If you have children, determine who can safely and reliably offer child care during your workday.
  • Learn about the employer's business. Research the company on the Internet and check out the company's Web site (read any "news" items posted on the company site).
  • Be ready for the interview. Show your enthusiasm for the job. Know how to give clear, concise, positive answers—even to tough questions.
  • Dress appropriately and arrive early for the interview. Clean, well-cared for clothes and personal cleanliness is a must.
  • After the interview, send a short thank-you note to the interviewer. A handwritten note is best, but if your note might be delayed because you need to make time to buy a card, buy stamps, and find a mailbox or post office, then send a polite e-mail instead. (Thank-you cards should be sent within 24 hours of the interview.) Regardless of how the message is delivered, make certain it is friendly and free of typos. If possible, have a skilled friend read over the note before it is sent.

When jobs are scarce, you have to be patient-but persistent. If you interview for a job that you don't get- don't take it personally. You may not have gotten the job for reasons that have nothing to do with you. Just keep believing in yourself and in the dreams you have for your family and your tribe. If your personal situation will allow this option, consider taking a no-pay or low-pay internship position. When jobs do open up, experienced interns are in an excellent position to be hired full time.

Even in tough times, the investment you made in yourself will pay off in time.