April 27, 2022

Job Search Burnout & How to Prevent It


Episode Highlights

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Feeling burnt out from looking for jobs? We get it. It’s easy to get stuck on application auto-pilot, but there are ways to avoid that and actually improve your process. Join Camille and Jill while they share their job search survival tips to help prevent burnout. Hirewell’s recruiters are great partners to help you through the job search process. Reach out to us today!

Episode Transcript

Hey everybody. Jill and I are back to continue the conversation on burnout. We wanted to talk more about job search burnout, and how to prevent that. So we’re really excited. Kind of our own job search survival guide we made up for you guys to share. So the first thing we wanted to talk about is figuring out what you’re looking for, doing a personal check-in.

And this can be a lot of different things like where you’re working, if you’re a remote or in office, hybrid, flexible work schedule, if you want to work during the day, full-time hours, part-time, weekends, all of that good stuff. What what kind of management style you’re looking for, day to day responsibilities, what type of salary to keep your comfortable life that you have now, and if you’re looking for a contract or full-time. Yeah. Those are all like, really very awesome things. Like I think even just having almost like a checklist, you know, like all the things you just listed off. Because there’s so much that goes into a job search and I feel that, especially with different people that I’ve talked to, even my own experience where you’re like okay, I’m ready.

Whether something happened at work and you’re just kind of like, forget it. All right. Need to go find a new job and you just dive right in. But we can really just spin our wheels and actually get burnt out from just job searching, because if we don’t have anything that’s anchoring in us in and if we don’t actually know what we want, what we really want from a personal level, of course, professional. Like you said, like what day-to-day responsibilities can you handle, management style, different things like that. But you have to understand what you want

first. So like what do you value? What’s important to you? Are weekends important to you? Work-life balance, culture, what kind of things are important to you so that you can make sure that you’re then targeting your search for companies, or leadership or whatever it might be that also align with what is important to you.

And I think that we kind of, we can get caught up in the skills and this and the, all of the kind of the technical transactional stuff, but it’s really at the end of the day up to us to figure out like what we really want. So taking time to just kind of organize your thoughts, figure out what is actually important to you.

What will you settle or accept? What are hard no’s. So I think just organizing that first is really important to kind of help just give you like a north star, like a guiding compass to figure this out because it’s so- I mean, we all know you can go down rabbit holes of job applications.

So just focusing on yourself first is really, really good to prevent that just spinning your wheels from. Definitely. And if there’s something wrong in your current role, and that’s the reason why you’re looking, whether that’s salary, bad management, bad culture, all those things, you want to make sure that won’t be in your next role.

And sometimes that’s hard to figure out through the interview process, but that’s what’s really great about meeting with quite a few different people on the teams, meeting with management. And just being able to do research on the company. So you don’t make the same mistake again, I think is really important. Making sure it checks all your boxes, but you won’t know that unless you check in with yourself and figure out what you want for your next role.

Absolutely. Absolutely. And I think that that’s something that Hirewell did really well. I talked with such a wide variety of different people from different teams and different leads. I think that that really helps too, especially interviewing virtually these days. It’s really hard to feel that energy and there’s- nothing can replace in person

right? But this is where we’re at right now. And even it’s okay to ask for another informational chat or another chat with maybe your potential manager. But definitely doing your research is, is important. And something else that I’ve also realized in my professional experiences that, we go into interviews or we tend to go into interviews, trying to

of course sell ourself and share why we’re qualified for this position. But we always have to remember on the other side of that, you know, it’s not just one way. It’s both ways. The company, also. The company, the leadership, the team. Also, at some point in that interview process things pivot, and the company and the people will eventually start to kind of sell themselves to you and like why you should be on the team.

But we have to remember that it’s not just one sided, but the company in the business and the culture also should match us. We don’t just have to just sell ourselves to that, too. Yeah, absolutely. And I feel like that’s been a hot topic on LinkedIn lately. Everyone wants the quickest interview process, which like years ago I thought the same thing too, until I got to Hirewell

and I met with so many people and it was amazing. And they’re learning about you. You’re learning about them. It’s really great. But the biggest thing is sure you might get an offer quicker, but you’re going to miss all the red flags and you’re going to be out on a job search in like two or three more months because you missed the toxic culture.

You missed why everyone was leaving because there’s no internal promotions or things like that and lack of resources and just little things that you would miss and you would never know if you didn’t take the time to ask those questions. But some people don’t even know what questions to ask. So that’s also kind of another, another side of

the job search burnout, as well as just to know what you’re looking for and maybe have mentors or people that you can talk to, to lead you through their process and to tell you a little bit about what to ask and what to interview the company about. Right. Right. And we’ll actually touch on that in a second, too.

Perfect. So then once you are able to figure out what you’re looking for and really identify some companies, some positions that you want to apply for, make sure to be mindful of your time, don’t apply in bulk to any companies, things like that. Make sure that you’re only applying to companies and jobs that you would actually do, and just make sure you’re paying attention to like the job description and the location and make sure it’s something that you would

see yourself doing and would be happy with, cause you certainly don’t want to waste your time because that would just lead to burnout. Right. Absolutely. And it’s easy to get, to get kind of caught up in just like the mass application. I’ve definitely been in position several times in my career where I just wanted to get out.

So I was just, it was kind of like white knuckling, you know, like white knuckle grip on the whole process and was like, I have to apply. I have to send this out. I had to do- but I wasn’t checking in with myself, you know? And it wasn’t authentic and it wasn’t intentional. Even just in the application phase, even just taking a second to just check in with yourself and see like okay, what is your gut-

is your gut telling you something? Is it telling you like, Hey, maybe this isn’t, you know, not so bad or maybe, you know, we should reconsider whatever it might be. But check in with yourself and just see, like are you excited about it? Should be applying or I have to apply? But check in with yourself and really go through those first steps of what’s important to you? Is this company and culture is something that is aligned with what you want? Because again, like what you said, mass applying or just like obsessively applying or I have to apply, can definitely lead to burn out too.

Yeah, and everybody does it. We’ve all been there. We’ve all done. It. We’ve all been there. We’ve all done it, but it’s just for the long-term and to have a good experience, whether you’re unemployed or whether you’re trying to leave your current role, you just want to make that job search a good experience and be gentle with yourself and give yourself grace.

So, I think that’s important. Yes. Yeah. Be easy on yourself. Yeah. And so once your applications go through and you’re scheduling for those interviews, make sure that you just pay attention to when you’re scheduling those, what days work best for you? Like don’t schedule it first thing on a Monday morning or Friday afternoon, if you have plans or anything like that.

I know Jill mentioned when we were talking about this, like what time of day works best for you? When do you have most energy and feel good about yourself? Things like that, which for me is probably like late morning is when I would feel comfortable doing it. So just figure out what works for you, just so you can be on top of your game and prep for the interview,

leave time to debrief after, write a followup thank you email, all that good stuff. Yeah, for sure. Definitely. Giving yourself enough time. Not too much time. I’ve definitely, there is such thing as over-preparing, because you’re not even retaining any information that you’re trying to prepare for. But definitely giving yourself enough time just to decompress or even leading right up to

the interview. In my opinion, and I think other people might agree- the worst thing you could do is like trying to study or write all of these notes, like leading up to the interview. Instead of that, just put on, put on your headphones, put on your favorite song and like dance around, listen, do anything- anything but

preparing for the interview the last 10, 15 minutes or so before that. Just get in, watch funny videos, get yourself in that just more of a relaxed, feel good mood to better, to better prepare yourself. Yeah, for sure. Awesome.

And of course, we really want you all to be able to walk away with some real time action things that you can start thinking about now. And so we connected with some of our team leaders to get some feedback on what are some good questions that you should be asking to help extract that information of is this the right fit?

Is this the right company? How do I feel about this? And also different ways to ask about those things that are important to you. For example, work-life balance, culture, without just asking “So tell me about work-life balance here”. So I think so some of these really great questions- shout out to Matt Hernandez for sharing some of this.

So asking what success means in a role? What does that look like? How does your team celebrate success? I love that every single week we have- every day we’re celebrating something on our team, you know? So what does that look like and how do you feel about that?

Some other great questions is what is the support like if something goes wrong? Where are decisions made? What is that process like? I think that like even just asking about certain things, like depending on the- of course the job in the industry is, are people if they say, you don’t work on weekends, are people also kind of low key expected to work on weekends?

There’s different things that you can ask that I think are specific to culture or work-life balance without just saying “what’s work-life balance like?” And then something else that I think is super important that we also talked about was really using your recruiter. Your recruiters should be your partner in this, and they

should help you guide, you know, guide you through the whole process, help you better understand the culture, the team, leadership, management. Of course, all that stuff is so important for you to figure out on your own, but using a good recruiter is going to be asking those right questions, is going to make sure that you are asking the right questions to help determine is this the right fit for you.

So I think that making sure that the recruiter is your partner is really important because it’s not just up to the candidates to ask the right questions. The recruiter should also determine if something is misaligned or not. So I think that’s just really, really important to use your recruiter because the recruiter- use us!

We can ask the tough questions. We’re definitely going to help you figure out if this is a good fit or not. So we can also help provide those questions as well. Absolutely. And any question that feels uncomfortable to ask a hiring manager, reach out to your recruiter. They should be able to talk that through with you, even if it’s not something they know. They can ask the hiring manager themselves and make it more general of a question so it doesn’t have to be coming from you.

And if it’s uncomfortable, the recruiters should be your partner, like we are at Hirewell and be able to walk through that process with you, for sure. Yes. Awesome. And shout out to Shannon on the managed recruiting team for the feedback that she gave us as well. So what she really focused on was more about focusing on like the tenure when you’re interviewing for a company.

And she said, anyone who has a staff of like five plus years, they’re typically doing something right. So I think that’s important. And you can even look that up on LinkedIn when you’re interviewing and search the company or specific team. See how long they’ve been there.

See if they recently just started with the company, if they’ve been there for a couple of years, you can do your research on that, but you can also ask the hiring manager as well. A few other things that were important is asking if the role is a backfill for someone who left or if it’s a newly opened role.

So I think that’s important just because you can ask what success looks like in that role and depending how the hiring manager explains it, you can also ask maybe if that’s the reason that the person had left. Maybe because they were burnt out, things like that. If they had a lot on their plates. So you can kind of dig into those two questions just to figure out if this would be a lot on your plate role, if you’d have a lot of support and just kind of how this role came about, I think is really good to figure out as well.

Yeah, for sure. And then of course with that, if you are unsure about how to ask those questions about tenure or how to better extract information about the position itself, like well, why did that person leave? Again, go back to your recruiter. Use them as your partner and say, “Hey listen, this is really important for me to understand if this is a backfill or if this is a new position. What’s a better way to ask these questions?”

And if you’re working with a good recruiter, they will definitely provide that for you. Yeah, for sure. And it’s important to ask them all those certain questions because you certainly don’t want to be left after all the interviews and have a really great offer in front of you, but still have a lot of questions that could have have some red flags.

So it’s important to make sure you have a good understanding of the role, how it’s come about and everything in between so you can make a good decision and feel good about it. After the fact, 30, 60 days, 90 days after, and still feel like you made the right decision. Definitely. Definitely. Oh, absolutely.


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