5 Hacks to Find a New Job This Weekend

This is how to search for (and score) a new job in 48 hours.
Jaime Petkanics, founder of The Prepary, is also a Career Contessa Mentor. You can book a personalized career advice session with Jaime to help launch your search.
No one likes the process of finding a new job, but what if we told you there's an easier way? Follow our guide to kickstart your job search in under 48 hours. You'll be done in time for Sunday's mimosas and hollandaise.
We’ve all been there. You're procrastinating on updating your resume, have forgotten your LinkedIn password, and hate the thought of combing through online job boards. Deep down you know it’s time to leave your job, but you’re showing up week after week because starting the search seems so incredibly daunting. 

You might want to sit down for this:

Despite past evidence to the contrary, trying to find a new job doesn’t need to be painful or prolonged. You can even get started in a single weekend. On board? Block out some time, and let’s rip the band-aid off. Here’s to a new job in 48 hours and 5—easy—steps.
You might want to sit down: the job search doesn’t need to be painful or prolonged. You can even get started in a single weekend.

1. BOOK COFFEE OR DRINKS WITH 3 PEOPLE WHOSE CAREER ADVICE YOU TRUST

Sometimes the first step to finding a new job is just saying it out loud. Make plans this weekend with a few people you trust and who give great advice. Share with them that you’re thinking of moving on and vent any concerns you might have. Ask them how they would describe you, and use their answers to edit your resume (see step 3) and LinkedIn summary.

The other great thing about these “meetings” is that your close friends and confidants often see strengths and opportunities that you don’t. Get their perspective on what they think would be a strong move for you. Of course, your intuition and gut takes precedent so if you already have a clear idea of what you want, share your plans and you’ll likely get a ton of support and validation.

2. TRY THIS EMPLOYMENT MANTRA: QUIT B*TCHIN', STArT PITCHIN'

Most of us get into a terrible habit when we don’t like our jobs. We go out with friends/acquaintances and dinner or drinks quickly turn into a venting session. That is a huge missed opportunity when you're trying to find a new job.

This weekend, when people ask you, “How’s work going?” or “Are you still at Company X?” instead of launching into 15 different complaints, start looking towards the future. Create a pitch that you’ll use every time someone asks you about work like the one below:

“Yes, I’m still working as a [title] at [company]. It has been going well and I love working on X, Y, and Z, but I am thinking I’m ready to make my next move. I’m looking to work at a [type of company] company in the [functional area] department.”

Now here’s the most important part:

“If you happen to know anyone who I should connect with, definitely let me know!”

You never know who people know, so resist the urge to complain about the past or current state and start looking towards the future.
This weekend isn’t about starting and completing a full job search, but it’s about setting yourself up for a stress-free and successful job search in the coming months.

3. UPDATE YOUR PROFESSIONAL RESUME, BUT DON'T GET STUCK IN THE WEEDS

Obviously before starting any job search you need to update your materials. For most people this is the biggest barrier (and it can hold them up for months) because it seems so time-consuming. To avoid getting bogged down, consider doing a “speed session” with your resume.

Set a timer for one hour and go through the following steps. Recruiters generally only screen resumes for about 5 seconds on the first pass—so all that time you’re spending stressing over the wording of your bullets? Not well spent.

Step 1: Make a laundry list of every task you do in your current job. Don’t think too hard about the wording. Just get the actual work you do on paper. [10 minutes]

Step 2: Out of all of the tasks you wrote down put stars next to 4-6 that are resume-worthy. The ones you select should combine your most impressive responsibilities or projects and ones that are most relevant to the jobs you want to land. If you’re not sure, look up a few job postings that excite you and see what they’re looking for. Your resume should parallel those requirements. [5 minutes]

Step 3: Turn the tasks into resume bullets. This is probably what will take you the most time, but force yourself to work efficiently and don’t overthink it. Strong resume bullets clarify, include examples or metrics when possible, and answer the “so what?” by demonstrating how the task fits the big picture. [30 minutes]

Step 4: Proofread. Obviously your resume must be error-free. Comb through each line and make adjustments for typos, wordiness, and grammar. You might want to try running documents through a tool like Grammarly as a back up. [10 minutes]

Step 5: Format. The look and feel of your resume is important. The font should be clear and the document should be organized and easy to read. Make sure nothing looks sloppy, inconsistent, or misaligned and then PDF it. A “designed” resume is not necessary, but a clean and easy-to-read one is. [5 minutes]

An hour down, and your resume is now up to date. Now email it off to one of those trusted advisors from your morning coffee to get a second pair of eyes on it. Once you’re happy with the final result, ensure your LinkedIn is up to date as well with short descriptions under each job you’ve held. You can copy these from the resume you just finished.

4. TAP INTO YOUR professional NETWORK

Now that your resume is up to date, it’s time to write an “ask” email. You’ll use this template to write to people in your network who may be able to help you take your next step.

Your email should cover:
  • What you’re currently up to (in case they don't know)
  • What you’re looking to do next (give as much detail as you can)
  • Your updated resume
  • An ask at the end of the email to connect you with anyone they think might be helpful or relevant. 
I recommend sending personalized emails. You can copy and paste and then spend a minute adjusting some small details so it doesn’t seem like a mass email. If you’re asking someone for a favor like helping you find a new job, they shouldn’t feel like you put zero thought into your note.

5. IMPLEMENT those SEARCH skills TO FIND a new job

The great thing about all of the technology available now is that you shouldn’t have to do as much manual work while searching for roles and applying. Download tools like the LinkedIn job search app and set up job alerts on Indeed so the job postings come to you.

When you see jobs that are truly a great fit, apply. You don’t have to apply to 20 jobs in one weekend (and probably shouldn’t), but set a weekly goal for yourself that you can realistically meet. Since your materials are now ready and organized, you can easily apply as you see job postings that you’re excited about. Some may not require cover letters, while others even allow you to only apply with your LinkedIn profile.

This weekend isn’t about starting and completing a full job search, (not sure that’s even possible!) but it’s about setting yourself up for a stress-free and successful job search in the coming months. Ready to rip off the band-aid? Let’s do it.

Got more questions about how to conduct a weekend job hunt? Get at us in the comments.