Are YOU Proactive or Reactive in your Job Search?

When a Design Resumes client called for an appointment, we talked about how the economy affects people’s choices. Investing, purchasing, or scheduling appointments, it seems like people are holding back. People choose whether to be proactive or reactive.

Are you proactive or reactive?

He said he believed things could change, but he was going to be proactive. This man wanted to get his résumé updated so that when the tide turns, he is ready for whatever opportunities materialize.

Continuously update your résumé and career marketing materials with fresh content reflecting your strongest accomplishments and you will be ready.  When the networking opportunity surfaces, you will be ready when you find a potential opportunity to match your talents.

Don’t wait for something Catastrophic

Many people wait until they are terminated from a position, permanently laid off, or the company goes out of business to update or create their resume.

At that point, your emotions run so high, a range of being angry, depressed, lost, or sad you can’t think of accomplishments. My client’s strategy of being proactive meant he knew what he wanted to highlight on his résumé and share with the potential employer.

Benefits of being Proactive in Career Management

Clients using a proactive strategy can use tools such as selecting keywords to match skills. They can remember accomplishments to transform into “resume-speak.” This proactive client can retrieve testimonials or endorsements from their employee evaluations or thank you letters to incorporate into the résumé.

People who are proactive are also generally better networkers. Since they are present on LinkedIn, these job seekers actively building their contacts and connections.

Perhaps they use tools such as Jason Alba’s JibberJobber, to track network connections or build contacts in companies to approach for their next career move. Jason has labeled the difference as career management versus job search.

Career management is critical in today’s world.

It is increasingly obvious that nothing is forever these days. You have to choose if you should be proactive or reactive. Today, you can’t expect to have a job for 20 or 30 years the way that prior generations did. You can expect that you will transition to new jobs and possibly new careers multiple times in your working lifetime.

A professional résumé writer can certainly work with clients who are pushed into action by sudden job loss. But professionals who are proactive in their career management will be able to feel more in control if they suddenly find themselves in the job search mode. Which would you prefer to be? Proactive or reactive?

Land your dream job! Design Resumes helps you via interactive and personalized strategic coaching sessions to land your ideal job and achieve career happiness. Find out how to create your resume writing and job search solution here!


Are YOU Proactive or Reactive in your Job Search?


  1. kwbridge on October 31, 2008 at 2:33 pm

    Hi Julie,

    Being proactive is great advice. I’ve always tried to update my resume every 6 months even when my job is secure. I don’t want to deal with scrambling to update it when I suddenly need a new job or someone has asked me for it.

    My resume was rewritten a couple of months ago to focus on websites and working with WordPress. I had help with it but it WAS so hard.

  2. Julie Walraven on October 31, 2008 at 3:20 pm

    Hi Kim, thank you for being my first comment on this blog! You are the exception. Most people view resumes as a spontaneous purchase rather than a well thought out overall career management strategy. The other thing you are doing right is creating targeted documents to drive toward the types of positions you would like to have. People like to think a resume is a one size fits all document. In reality, you need to think of it as a tool to get to a goal that you tailor to fit the positions and career focus you are seeking.

    Always great to talk to you! I have learned lots from your (Anti) Social Development blog!

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Julie Walraven, Design Resumes

Julie Walraven

Professional Resume Writer

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