As I find myself at the end of month two of looking for a new job a few things strike me:
1. I was burnt out, and didn’t realize it. This forced time off wasn’t the worst thing for me. It turns out burnout isn’t easy to identify, for me it was a feeling of bordem and low-level anxiety. I feel refreshed and ready for new challenges, and I think this shows in my interviews now vs. even ones a month ago.
2. Balance is important. I’ve seen many posts about this, but job hunting shouldn’t be your full-time job. You should take it seriously while your doing it, but you need to do other things in your day. I bake, run, work on things around the house, and volunteer more of my time with my Search and Rescue team. These keep me sane, let me use my skills, and also give me downtime.
3. Learning is important. While I am not getting certifications and diplomas I am spending more time learning about AI, honing my skills, and entertaining rabbit holes that I used to have to skip because I didn’t have time. These are keeping me well rounded, and giving me things to talk about in interviews.
4. Be you. While I am continuing to read and learn about how to nail interviews, I am also finding my best conversations are the ones where I am authentically me. Sure I’ve been bumped out of interview processes because I wasn’t a good fit for a role, but some of these have also been recruiters who have started shopping me around internally because they like me and want me in some role, just not the one I applied for. Being me has also helped me bump myself out of some interview processes as well, just from the interview I could tell I wasn’t going to be successful at a company. While a job is a job right now, dropping out of a process I know I won’t be successful at will save me time to focus on the opportunities that will be.
5. Play the long game. Again, I have bills to pay and want to have a steady pay cheque, but checking in with folks I’ve had coffee with, or a recruiter I had a good interview with never hurts. It keeps me fresh in their mind, though it is a balance of not bugging them too often – really everything a product manager should be good at.
If you’re still reading, and you want to talk product, baking, dog training, or anything really please reach out and let me know. This is partially selfish because I’m finding my best leads on jobs are coming from unexpected places so I am hoping just meeting more people virtually will bring me more opportunities. I also like the new perspectives and new ideas since they are important to me – and let’s be honest I’m a little bored and would happily provide guidance to those who ask. 😀
I originally posted this on LinkedIn here: https://www.linkedin.com/posts/rorycraigbarnes_as-i-find-myself-at-the-end-of-month-two-activity-7156634734003912704-6FHP