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Yesterday my colleague, Shelly Stotzer, posted about finding opportunity in challenging times. If you’re like me, I have a little more time on my hands in the evening and weekends due to canceled events, programs, dinners. For some people, having this  much time on your hands can create a sense of restlessness, anxiety or even fear. It occurred to me that this is the perfect time to work on projects or ideas that may have been on my longer term to do list or tucked in the back corner of my mind.

If you’ve been thinking about a new job or career, but just haven’t been able to find the time to do anything about it, this is an opportunity. Here are five things that can help and even be fun when you’re not under a strict deadline. (So, yes, allocate at least a portion of that Netflix or online shopping time to this!)

1. Research job roles and careers: use Google or Yahoo and simply search job titles that you’ve always been fascinated with, or wondered if they exist, and just follow where that leads you. Make notes and jot down your thoughts in a stream of consciousness way. Don’t write off anything at this point, just learn what’s out there and what it might take to get there.

2. Create your target list: start a list of companies that you have always been curious about….and learn more. For Central Ohio, check out Columbus Business First’s Book of Lists or just use Google search to find lists of the largest, fastest growing, companies by industry, etc. These companies may offer the type of role you’ve been after. Then it’s all about LinkedIn and networking – more on that later!

3. Check Ins: are there former colleagues, friends, family members you’ve been meaning to check in with? Do it now! Just write them a short email update and ask them to let you know what they’ve been up to as well. It’s always better to maintain ongoing connections then suddenly call on people out of the blue as part of your networking efforts.

4. LinkedIn: when was the last time you updated your LinkedIn profile? Is it up do date? Did you just do a minimal profile and perhaps have been meaning to update it for some time? So just do it. Remember LinkedIn can be changed anytime! Something tells me recruiters are going to be using LinkedIn even more in the next few months!

5. Resume: How’s that resume looking right now? If someone called you about a job tomorrow and asked for your resume, how would you feel about sending it? If you don’t have major accomplishments called out well, start devoting some time each day to really think about it. Go online and check out current resume templates. Is yours outdated?

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Crosworks | Career & Leadership Coach
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