December 16, 2010

Finding a Real Job

If you're a graduating senior then graduation is approaching rather quickly Unfortunately for you, the industry is still not in great shape and the job market and economy as a whole are still going through some tough times as well. So, this pretty much gives you two options: let the odds get you down and give up now, or get proactive.

Honestly, in the music industry, unlike your friends in engineering or accounting, you really shouldn't expect to find a job this far in advance. So, you shouldn't exactly start a job search just yet. But, I also know most of you are on winter break now and are probably spending that time catching up with old friends or sitting on your couch watching tv and movies or playing video games (I was guilty too). There's nothing wrong with taking this time to relax, but try take just a few hours out in the name of productivity to get things on track for when it comes time to apply for jobs (I'll post some more on that later).

Here's some steps you can take now to put yourself in a good position later:
  • Update your resume
Hopefully this seems fairly obvious but make sure you do this now and try to keep it updated over the next several months.
  • Follow up with old contacts
As they say, it's all about who you know. So, make sure the people you know know what you've been up to and are still on good terms with you. You may need them to be your cheerleaders later.
  • Straighten up your linked in
If you don't have a linked in you should get one. Once you do, add your information and find your friends and professional contacts. In fact find as many as you possibly can and try to build a strong profile. This will come in handy later and I'll touch on that in the next post.
  • Think about where you want to work
Hopefully by now you've had a few internships and learned a little bit about what you want to do. So think about what you really loved and hated and what you'd look for in your ideal work environment. Knowing this now will make it much easier to make good decisions and find places to apply to in the future.
  • Get business cards
These are the best possible tool for when you meet someone new so get them and keep some with you wherever you go. If you need some tips and ideas on what to include or where to get them check out my other posts specifically addressing those issues:
  • Network
Yes, I know you've heard this word more times than you can count but it really is that important. And don't forget those business cards.

I'll reference each of these things and provide the next steps in another post as it gets closer to graduation.
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