Consider alternative strategies for job search

Feeling stuck in your job-searching process?

If the things you've been trying haven't been snaring interviews or even nibbles for jobs you have your eye on, then consider these alternative strategies:

•Try taking on a project or freelance work for a reduced fee or on a contract basis to prove yourself to a prospective employer. When business picks up, you already have a foot in the door.

•Consider opportunities at small businesses. While small businesses are also suffering in this recession, they have more leeway in negotiating pay and job duties than large employers.

•Expand your network beyond your immediate industry. Try reaching out to suppliers and customers.

•Craft a marketing plan to make sure the message about your career and accomplishments is clear and what you want to project to potential employers.

•Volunteer at professional organizations that match your expertise and attend conferences to strengthen your networking skills.

•Think about transferring your private-sector skills and expertise to nonprofit or government jobs. The federal government is hiring.

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