The holidays are a time of celebration, reflection and excitement. We celebrate the successes and reflect on the shortcomings of the previous year, yet we are filled with excitement of the New Year to come. A good friend of mine wrote to me this week and said, “I’m looking for opportunities where I get to do what I love to do and have the opportunity to make more money. I’m exploring; it will be fun to see what comes to me in the New Year.”

unemployed-3So many of us, though, do not take advantage of the opportunities that are afforded to us during the holidays, or we fall victim to the holiday job-search blunders.

It’s easy to talk about the benefits of continuing your job search during the holidays: Less competition with fewer people actively looking, easier to connect with decision makers because of less hectic calendars, newly created openings, and holiday parties present opportunities to network.

But what about the mistakes that people make during the holiday season? The following holiday bloopers could prevent you from job search success:

Don’t Drink Too Much and Cry about How you Lost Your Job. The most unattractive guest at the holiday party can be you if you drink too many martinis and cry on your neighbor’s shoulder about how you lost your job, and the job search is so difficult. You are your personal brand. Don’t ruin it at the holiday party. Find confidantes that you can vent with and share your feelings of frustration and anxiety. Put the drink down and focus on networking with potential “customers.”

Don’t Hand Out Your Resume at The Christmas Party! Holiday parties, church gatherings and school events are excellent opportunities to meet new and exciting people. It is also an opportunity to tell people about who you are, what value you bring to organizations and what position you are seeking. Do not pull out your resume or desperately ask for a job at this time of celebration. Instead arrange a follow-up meeting and reference your meeting and the holidays.

Don’t Stop Networking. Just because it is the holiday season, does not mean you, too, should take a holiday. It is easier to connect with business professionals during the holiday season. Their gate-keepers are typically out of the office, decision makers are not traveling for business and have less hectic schedules. Use this time as an opportunity to meet executives that have been too busy for you in the past.

Don’t Save Money by Eliminating Holiday Cards. Times may be tight financially when you are in the job search but don’t sacrifice this time to connect with people in a different way – through holiday cards. Executives are suffering from email inbox overload. Break the cycle by sending a personalized holiday greeting card to potential employers and those in your network. Let them know that you are still job hunting.

What are some of the mistakes you have seen in the job search, particularly during the holiday season? We would love to hear your stories!

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