Job Hunt Stalling Out?

in Air

The monsoon season is upon us here in Arvada. My middle child, Kristen, asked me the other day, "Isn't it supposed to be April showers? How come it's raining so much now?"

Well, dear, everything's late in this economy :)

How's your job hunt?

I know how hard it is to keep working the hours you are and still not get results. As a small business person I go through the same thing constantly - sometimes my marketing is effective and I get lots of people into programs; other months it's nothing.

Those "zero" months are difficult, to be sure. One part of my brain says, "What the heck is wrong with you - why can't you figure this out!?" Other parts ask for calm and tell me to be rational...but that can be difficult.

I learned to fly as a college student - about 25 hours in a Cessna 172-D, just enough to solo. One of the things you have to learn before they let you up there by yourself is how to successfully recover a stalled an airplane. Not that they want you to stall, but that you have to know what to do in case it happens.

A quick lesson in aerodynamics: a plane's wing is built to use the physical properties of air to keep it aloft...the wing is literally built so that the air rushing over the top has to go father, faster than the air underneath.

That causes the top air to increase in pressure, thus "lifting" the wing and the entire plane. As long as the air keeps going over the wing fast enough, (and the wing stays on - gulp), there's enough lift to keep even huge aircraft in the air.

A stall happens when there isn't enough airflow to keep the plane slow down too much, and it just drops out of the air. On my first stall, the instructor pilot (an accomplished Air Force Captain I still remember fondly) made me literally sit on my hands, because when the airplane falls, it falls nose first.

In fact, it dropped so suddenly that it went past vertical...we were literally hanging in the shoulder harnesses staring at nothing but ground, dropping like a paper weight off the side of a building. My first instincts were completely wrong!

Because if I hadn't been sitting on my hands, I'd have reached out and yanked that steering column back in an attempt to make the nose stop pointing at the ground.

That instinct kills people - there simply isn't enough lift to make the plane act properly and pulling back on the nose will put the plane into a spin - a much more deadly and violent situation to recover from.

The right move requires you to ignore your screaming instincts, keep the nose down and wait for the plane to get going fast enough to get lift going again, then pull up, after the plan has some speed.

Again, I'll ask - how's your job hunt?

I know it probably feels like you're stalling, about to drop right out of the sky. Do yourself a favor - push down on the steering a bit and give yourself some speed.

1. Check your marketing - make sure there are no mixed messages or confusing elements to what you're saying, and that you're saying it very quickly, front, top and center in your resume and cover letter.

2. Check your assumptions - if you've thought "I'm not taking a contractor job" but that's all there is, maybe you need to check yourself there and ask if a little 'money' over the wings wouldn't be more helpful than to hold out.

3. Keep smiling - honestly it's so important. **HOW** you approach interviewing and networking is SO critical...if you're losing your appeal and turning negative or angry, you're NOT helping yourself at all.

Find some ways (plural) to relieve stress...I'm regularly journaling my fears (and then I burn the paper) and taking long walks in the middle of the day. And I pray a lot more. And I have a group of friends I meet with regularly for support - all that keeps me smiling (most of the time) and gives me space to consciously make the right moves.

4. Learn! Self serving a little bit, but even if you don't learn it from me, get some new and selling yourself will be required skills for any professional in the coming years - getting more will put air over your wings.

Author Box
Scott Birkhead has 1 articles online

Scott Birkhead combined 15 years of in-the-trenches recruiting experience with direct-marketing to help job seekers learn to become masterful marketers of themselves.

Add New Comment

Job Hunt Stalling Out?

Log in or Create Account to post a comment.
Security Code: Captcha Image Change Image
This article was published on 2010/04/02