Six ways to get a job when you aren't looking for a job

It is true that people are losing their jobs. It is also true that people are getting hired. Over the past several months I have heard countless comments about the labour market and how it is no use looking for work because no one is hiring. At the same time I am hearing comments about the amazing positions people are landing despite the labour market challenges.

When I tell the people who have given up on looking for work that there are plenty of positions being filled they look at me quizzically. So why are some people finding work while others aren't?

I am convinced that people are getting jobs because they aren't looking for jobs. They are preparing for a new job before they even need one and they aren't starting the process when they are. These six tips will have you ready for a new position before you are looking for a new position!

1. Be curious. Ask people you know, and complete strangers, about their work. What is their job title? What did they have to do to secure their position - did they need specific skills, education / training, experience? What do they love about their job? The more you know about the world of work the better!

2. Do your research. If you are working in a particular field or industry find out about the different companies, occupations, and positions. Become knowledgeable about your occupation as well. Are there professional associations you can join? Are there industry or occupation specific certifications you can obtain? What conferences are people attending? If you have a particular area of interest why not immerse yourself in learning about it?!

3. Become a subject matter expert. Take your work seriously and take advantage of the opportunities presented to you. Ask to get involved with a special project or a committee. Better yet, propose a special project or a committee that will benefit the organization, department, team, community, or industry. Being a subject matter expert is a great way to stay connected within your company and your industry.

4. Be your best every day. Don't just show up for work and put in your time - even if you don't love your job. Smile. Be approachable. Be helpful. Do what you need to do and a little bit more. Be reliable. Share. Do your best work.

5. Be entrepreneurial. Think outside of your current role or the core business or your organization. Based on your research is there a new product or service, a new business model, or a different client base that could grow the organization? You can be entrepreneurial inside and outside the organization. Maybe you have a stellar idea that you want to pursue independently or with a partner. Being entrepreneurial is a great life skill.

6. Develop and maintain relationships. Don't wait to make connections and build your network until you need them. Create and foster relationships today so that if and when your situation changes, by choice or by circumstance, you know how your allies are and who you can reach out to for support and assistance. Keep in touch with people and help them out when you can. Let them know about opportunities you are aware of, invite them to be a part of your network, and help keep them connected. Customers, vendors, contractors, colleagues, competitors, and supervisors, are always keeping their eyes open for the right person for their business.

Doing these things when you have a job is much easier than when you don't. Take the time and the initiative to prepare for your next job - whether it be with your current company or a different company, in your occupation or a different occupation, in your industry or a different industry - before you need to find your next job. You never know what interesting opportunity might be just around the corner.

Here's to a fabulous future,


For a FREE 30 minute job search consultation please feel free to contact Paula directly at or 780.589.2245.

For a FREE 30 minute consultation please feel free to contact Paula directly at or 780.589.2245. Connect with Paula on LinkedIn or Facebook.

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