Recession-Proof Job Search Strategies for New College Graduates

While job security is never a sure thing during a recession, it is possible to find, secure and maintain a successful career notwithstanding our weak economy. This isn't the first time that college students have graduated during a recession - and probably won't be the last. In mid 1990 and then again in mid 2002, the United States experienced economic recession. Notwithstanding, most MBAs and other college graduates were able to find good jobs. Learning from their experience can help you, as a new college graduate, do the same.

Recent college graduates who are able to stay calm, think creatively, be flexible and learn to network effectively can find jobs - even during a recession.

Don't wait for the perfect job to come along immediately
If you're like most recent college gradutes out looking for a job during a recession you're probably saddled with student loans. While students loans aren't ideal they're a fact of life for most recent college grads. Additionally, many of you may also be burdoned with the cost of every day living. If you're strapped for cash and need to work as soon as possible don't hold out for the perfect job. During a recession there is typically a lot of competition for top career positions, let alone any job position. An MBA way have his or her heart set on a specific job but the competition for MBA jobs may be so fierce that it just isn't realistic to hold out until an opportunity comes a long. If you're job hunting during a recession it's time to consider all viable alternatives so that you can find gainful employment as soon as possible. Additionally, if you remain outside of the job market too long you'll loose valuable skills and find it more difficult to land the perfect job once the economy has recovered.

Consider moving back in with the parents - temporarily
Yes, we realized that the last thing in the world you had hoped to do upon graduating with a college degree was to move back in with your parents. While this isn't the right option for everyone it can be a wise way of providing yourself the time and resources you need to regroup, develop a game plan, find your focus and save money. Additionally, this will help new graduates avoid the burdensome costs of finding a new place to live, and uncertain economy and dedicate scarce resources to the job hunting effort. Living with the parents for a while may also enable you to start paying back student loans.

Find a career that can serve as a stepping stone to a better job down the road
While many graduates envision landing their dream job right of college it rarely happens, especially during a recession. Focusing your job search efforts on landing a job that can serve as a stepping tstone to a better job down the road is an ideal strategy for new graduates who want to find a job quickly and position themselves for future career advancement opportunities. For example, if you're an MBA looking to get into the investment banking industry you may consider working temporarily as a corporate financier, financial analyst, or even taking a temp job in the finace related industry until the economy recovers and investment banks start hiring again. This strategy will not only help you pay your bills in the near term but it will help you build your resume for the long term.

Never discount the value of networking
Did you know that most job openings are filled before they every show up on a major job board? So how are they filled? By referral. Most job openings are filled by individuals that have been referred by other employees. The number one way to land a good job during a recession, or during any economy for that matter, is through networking. Your chances of getting an interview and ultimately getting hired by an employer are astronomically higher when some one trusted (i.e. a friend, family member, college peer, employee, industry professional, etc.) refer you to that employer. Additionally, and mentioned previously, most jobs never make it to the open job market. By networking you can get access to job openings that most applicants will never find. Networking is the key to ensuring yourself a good job during a weak job market.

Find a job that pays well and helps Baby Boomers and Millenial Generation populations
Notwithstanding a downturn in the economy, many business sectors, especially those supporting aging baby boomers, are thriving. If you want to find a stable job that pays well explore those industries that support baby boomers - specifically healthcare, wellness, and financial services industries. Other industries that continue to grow during a recession include those that support the Millenial Generation (i.e. individuals born from 1980 to 2000). Individuals from the Millenial Generation are the greatest consumers of information technology goods and services, computers, and electronic products. These industries not only continue to grow but provide longer-term career advancement opportunities.

Be clear about your skills as a new grad hunting for a job during a recession
During a recession it is imperative that new college graduates be able to effectively communicate their skills. You must also be able to communicate to potential employers how you are going to be able contribute to the company's bottom line. Employers aren't looking to hire just another employee thats going to end up costing money - especially during a recession. They want to hire a professional that knows how to get things done and that has the skills required to make meaningful and profitable contributions. Before you interview with a company make sure that you know what that company is looking for and that you're able to communicate how your skills are relevant to the needs of the company.

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