7 Smart Ways to Unclutter Your Career


Pearls of self promoting wisdom from Jessica Sitomer to make your job search more effective:

1. UPDATE YOUR CONTACT LIST

Time to go through your contacts with the eye of a business owner. Who are your valuable contacts? By valuable I mean the people who care about and contribute to your success? I give people a goal of 200 contacts because of my successful clients’ proven track number with that number. However, if you’re just keeping contacts on your list for the “number” it’s not an accurate or valuable list. So re-do your contact list so you can have a clear visual of how many people you know who can hire you directly, can connect you with people, or are valuable to you in the way of networking partners or career support. Then evaluate what’s missing so that you can start building relationships that will move you forward.

2. EVALUATE WHAT MAKES YOU MONEY AND GROWS YOUR CONTACTS   

Make a list of everything, YES EVERYTHING, you do to get jobs that make you money and to grow your contacts. Once you make the list eliminate the ineffective work. This will most likely be the stuff you do that is in your comfort zone that doesn’t reap the rewards, but makes you feel like you’re doing “something.” You may rationalize it by saying that doing something is better than doing nothing, but if it’s ineffective you may as well use that time for self-care. My reasoning is that I’ve seen too many people do ineffective work to feel good about doing “something” only to feel horrible when they get no results. You’d be better off doing something fun or invigorating for your mind, body, and soul.

3. SCHEDULE BLOCKS OF TIME

In the same way that you schedule out a chunk of time in your calendar for a job, you can chunk out time for focused work. Start with the hardest tasks, the ones you don’t like to do. If you procrastinate the hard tasks, you get far less done than if you get them over with.

4. DESIGN A NETWORKING PLAN

Knowing that networking is so important for your career, take the guess work out by researching the most effective places for you to network and then schedule the events in your calendar. Going to networking events for the sake of going is creating “clutter.” Know why you’re going, who you want to meet, how many people you want to meet, and what you have to do to have a successful event. I aim to meet 5 people at every event. Since I’m shy and hate talking to strangers, I stand at the bar and wait for people to approach me. Attend pitchfests, screenwriting expos and workshops.

5. CHANGE YOUR WORKSPACE

If your work space is not an inspiring place, unclutter it and make it a place you love to work. Add plants, music, color, whatever keeps you calm and focused. The other alternative is finding a new space; a posh hotel with wireless access, a coffee shop, or a friend’s house who has a great view.

6. CREATE A FOLLOW UP CALENDAR

Follow-up is one of the most important ways to maintain relationships. Again, within your chunked batches of focused work time, create a schedule for follow up. Choose a number of people to follow up with per day or per week, but don’t let it go farther than that or it could get messy.

7. BATCH YOUR SOCIAL MEDIA MARKETING

By now you know how important your social media network is. People get hired based on how many “Friends” and “Followers” they have. A big reason why people get frustrated by social media is because they see it as a “time sucker” which it can be. So batch your posts by using free services such as HootSuite.com. Use social media to congratulate colleagues, wish them a happy birthday or happy holidays.

Uncluttering will not only make your job pursuit a smoother process, it will also make you feel good.

And Action!

1. Start with one of the 7 steps.

2. Add in a step or two each week until you’ve completely uncluttered.

3. Do something to celebrate the hard work you’ve done! You’re worth it.

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