What to Expect

One or two jobs may emerge early on, even promising ones. The reality of the job market is that these jobs usually soon fade away or turn out to be poor fits for you. Start by contacting people you know quite well, who are receptive and who try to be helpful. A decade ago, many of these people may not have been through job searches themselves and had only a general understanding of the process. Today, a much larger number of them will have had this experience and will likely be empathetic and knowledgeable.

Expect considerable pressure and lots of ups and downs in your emotions—it’s normal. Your best tonic is working hard and developing a full calendar. Expect several job prospects that seem close to an offer suddenly disappear. Less frequently, a prospect you thought was dead months ago comes to life again. Several months into your
search, you may have gone through most of your contacts and their referrals, which are fewer and weaker than they were at the beginning. It’s par for the course. Your advantage is that you’ve had more experience with this process now, have better skills, and are more resourceful in getting to see people you want to. Continue developing
new contacts, but also go back to some of the more useful people you’ve already seen for additional help. Often you can contact a helpful person several times. That person will tell you if you are overdoing it.

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