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Advice for staying grounded during your job search

Here are the best 3 pieces of advice that were passed to me during my job hunt. Great tidbits of knowledge and wisdom that helped keep me grounded and positive during the rollercoaster ride of my job search.

You may have read my practical tips for surviving funemployment in San Francisco. Hopefully, you found something that helps!

1. “Don’t be surprised if it takes 6 months to find a job”

This was from an executive recruiter based in New York. My husband and I connected with her before leaving Australia, to help set our expectations for job hunting in the USA. She has worked with a lot of Australian expats ready to conquer the New York City job market. She said a lot of times, people quickly become despondent in their job search when they are not being snapped up instantly.

This recruiter reminded us that it takes time to build a network, familiarize yourself with a new city and local job market, and refine what sort of role you are best suited to in your new city.

So keep persevering, and appreciate that as a skilled hire, the process takes time!

For me, it took 5 months and 42 applications!

2. “Who are you in this city? Nobody. You’re starting from scratch”

This came from an Aussie friend of mine, who has lived in San Francisco for a few years now. Delivered in true blue, no bullsh*t style, these words were exactly the reality check I needed to lick my wounds, check my ego at the door, and get over the recurring rejection I was experiencing.

San Francisco (like many big global cities) is a melting pot of amazing and hungry international talent, coming from every corner of the earth to test themselves in the Bay Area market.

While Australians are generally pretty likable folks, in an international city like San Francisco, being from Australia is not quite as much of a novelty as you might expect. So try to steer clear of your references to “back home”, and focus on showing off your skills in the USA.

For us – people had rarely even heard of Adelaide or South Australia. Nobody recognized our Universities and most people didn’t know our previous employers.

So accept that it will take a little extra spice to make yourself be seen and heard, and stand out among the sea of highly talented competition, regardless of your funny accent.

3. “If it’s yours, you’ll get it”

This wisdom came from an Uber driver who picked me up on a grueling day of 6 hours of back to back job interviews. He wished me good luck before imparting these words of wisdom.

It reminded me that everything happens for a reason. Every job I didn’t get was preparing me to secure the job that was the best fit.

Of course, in the end, it is 99.9% down to your abilities, charisma, and presentation. But there is no harm in having a little trust in the universe to keep you motivated!

Good Luck!

Kirsten Bernhardt

Kirsten Bernhardt

I am a proud South Australian at heart, with a deep love of cheese, wine, my husband and family and travel (maybe in that order). In January 2019 I embarked on a new adventure with my husband, when we packed up our lives and relocated to San Francisco, spurred on by a love for the city, and some wise words from Mark Twain: “Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails." I am constantly surprised by how much I have learned as a result of this decision. I encourage everyone to dive into their own adventures, no matter how scary. I am excited to share what I've learned along the way, in the hopes it makes your journey a little easier. PS. I don't have Instagram or an iPhone. I remain optimistic regarding my ability to assimilate in the USA. Wish me luck!View Author posts

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