For 113 days, the hockey season looked like it might never happen. Here’s how job seekers can apply lessons from that time to their hunt.
One hundred thirteen days. That’s the total time it took for the recent NHL lockout to end.
Agreements could not be reached. Fans were angry. The 2012-2013 hockey season looked like it would never happen. However, after much negotiation and tradeoffs, the lockout ended, resulting in a shortened season, a returning buzz in the sports world and players, coaches and fans digging out their favorite hockey apparel.
Lucky for fans, players and owners, the lockout resulted in a positive outcome—and lucky for job seekers, the events that transpired demonstrate a few tips that can help you in your . Here are a few lessons you can take away:
Stay in shape
One hundred thirteen days is a long time for athletes to go without playing. During this off-time, their skills may have waned simply because they weren’t as active or challenged as they had been at the end of last season. This may have been fine during the lockout, but now that the season has begun, they’re facing a harsh reality.
The same goes for job seekers. It’s easy to fall off the professional wagon. It’s important to stay in shape mentally, so when your job search results in an interview, you’ll be prepared and excel. Staying up on industry trends, honing your interviewing techniques and learning about the latest job search methods are all ways to improve yourself for when that time comes.
Many hockey players found themselves exploring other opportunities to better themselves during the lockout. For instance, a good number of players went to in Europe and Russia. Although this was not ideal, that experience could help to reshape the way they perform.
For job seekers, downtime gives you the chance to rebrand yourself professionally. As an example, revamping your cover letter lets you try something new. Using different application techniques, such as video resumes, helps you to stand out from the competition. Talking to professionals about alternative career paths gives you insight into your industry. These methods allow you to rejuvenate your brand so you don’t reach a lull in your search or in yourself professionally.
Know when to compromise
It’s tough to face, but sometimes you need to compromise. The NHLPA and NHL had to when it came to salary deals and current contracts. Job seekers may have to do the same.
If your current methods fail to lead you to a job, finding another balance may be a better strategy. For example, if you’re not getting an interview in your dream city, you may want to look elsewhere. If the employer of your dreams can’t pay a salary you desire, try to find a solution. If you aren’t gaining any job search leads or you’re not happy with your current career path, look into alternate careers in your space.
When you compromise, you not only take back the control in your search; you also put yourself in a better position to actually .
Adjust your plan accordingly
NHL coaches across the States and into Canada had plans for the pre-season that were created back in September. Months later, with a shortened training camp, the coaches had to throw out or readjust their plans to implement what will work now to prepare players to battle it out on the ice.
Many job seekers are faced with a similar challenge. Do I continue to use the same job search and interview techniques, or do I throw out my plan and try something new? It can be hard to change your strategy mid-hunt, but even small adjustments can be beneficial. Anything from joining a professional organization to tweaking the story you tell in an interview can result in a more positive reaction from employers.
Although a hiatus of 113 days isn’t convenient, the insight that can come from the NHL’s off-time can be invaluable to any . So, job seekers, take note. Staying in shape, rebranding yourself, knowing when to compromise and adjusting your plan accordingly are all ways you can use your time to create a better result now and in the future.
What do you think? What are some other things job seekers can learn from the NHL lockout?
Alan Carniol is the Founder of Interview Success Formula, a program that helps job seekers to deliver powerful answers that prove why they are the right person for the job. Follow Alan and Interview Success Formula on , and .