I live in Southern California, the Entertainment Capital of the World but it is also known for its surfing and beach culture made famous in the 1960’s by the American Rock Band The Beach Boys. I bet you did not know that one of The Beach Boys surfing songs was actually about job search. The song is “Catch a Wave” and you’re sitting on top of the world. Of course, I am being facetious. However, surfing is as a great metaphor for job search. I found some of these tips on surftravelcompany.com which I think fit job search scenarios quite well.
- Get in Shape. There are no out of condition world surfing champions. Job search translation – get your resume in shape. Too many people rely on self-help resume templates or friends to help them put a resume together. Anyone who has ever worked with a fitness trainer knows you get a better workout when someone pushes you. Get advice from an expert and don’t go public until you have a lean, mean resume.
- The worse the conditions the better. World class surfers surf in all conditions not just sunny days. Job search translation – push yourself and keep pushing to get that resume in shape, push yourself to attend networking events, push yourself to make that cold call, push yourself to prepare for an interview, push yourself until you find that open door and then keep on pushing until you finish the wave.
- Use that thing between your ears. Great surfers don’t just react, they think. They visualize. Job search translation – think about the reaction people will have who read your resume or listen to your elevator pitch, think about the questions you are going to be asked on that job interview, think about that handshake, think about what you will wear to the interview, etc., and then concentrate on what you need to do to assure a positive response to each.
- Get analytical and have a Good Bag of Moves. Every surf condition is different and requires adaptation. You need someone to observe your moves and help you improve and overcome areas of weakness. Job search translation – most athletes have coaches and job search is no different. A career coach can help you identify areas where you need to improve your job search strategy, resume, interviewing, networking, helping build your confidence and to keep pushing you.
- Fear is something to work with. A great surfer respects fear and uses the adrenaline it produces to achieve success. Job search translation – the loss of a job or the fear of job loss produces fear that can be used to fuel the next great job opportunity.
Lastly, I have never physically surfed with a board but I have body surfed and have caught a few waves that produced exhilarating rides. I have also swallowed mouthfuls of salt water and been tossed to the beach with my body covered in sand and sea shells. With either experience I could not wait to run back and do it again.