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Apr 20

Trust the Process

Last week during a physical activity, I sprained my neck. I’ll be fine, but I needed to visit the chiropractor and physical therapist. Hoping that the combination of treatments would magically lift away the pain and stiffness, I was dismayed to leave the first appointment without noticing significant improvement. Same for the second appointment. I’m scheduled for five more. While I’m not seeing results right away, I need to trust the process, knowing that the prescribed course of treatment will help achieve my goals for recovery.

Can you guess where I’m going with this? There is a direct connection to the job search and career development process.

Early stage (Engage): One of the first steps in the process is learning about your unique set of skills, interests, and motivations. We have assessments for that. Over time, you must then begin to build your network and cultivate your professional presence. Informational interviews can help you explore career paths and discover nuanced insights that lead to success. During this stage, there are no quick results, but trust the process.

Middle stage (Develop): Writing application documents, such as resumes, CVs, or cover letters, is often an iterative process that begins with a first draft, continues through initial revisions, and ends with customized versions for each application. Building interview skills does not happen overnight, either. It involves reflection to develop sufficiently detailed and viable stories you can share, and one or more mock interviews for practice. Trust the process and your applications will be successful.

Late stage (Empower): Receiving a job offer is often seen by applicants as the end of the cycle, but indeed it begins the negotiation period as well as the transition from graduate student to professional colleague. The transition can be difficult as you adjust to new routines and locations, make new friends and colleagues, and tackle projects that stretch your skillset. Don’t view the final stages of the job search as the culmination of your efforts, but as an ongoing experience where you continue to grow as an individual, professional, researcher, and scholar. It takes time, but trust the process.

Our current culture of instant gratification limits our patience for awaiting results, but if we trust the process we can be confident success will come our way. Where are you in your job search process? How have you seen your trust pay off in other areas? Please don’t hesitate to contact us for help along the way.

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