Heather Boulger: Boost your holiday job search this season | Columnists

Heather Boulger: Boost your holiday job search this season | Columnists


Let’s face it: 2021 has been weird, and everyone is feeling COVID fatigue.

As the world reemerges from the life-changing pandemic, we are seeing in the workplace renewed attention to issues of social injustice, economic inequality, corporate social responsibility, diversity and inclusion, and jobs. Employers have openings in just about every occupation.

It’s the end of the year, when we typically celebrate our annual accomplishments, so, be proud of what you have overcome and know that the challenges of today will pave the way for a brighter tomorrow.

‘Tis the season to find a job

Many job seekers take a break from job searching during the holidays. It’s a hectic time of year and can be challenging to juggle all of the responsibilities of the season with keeping a job hunt moving forward.

The current Berkshire unemployment rate is 5.7 percent (November), and the statewide database shows 2,848 job openings in the region. Don’t wait until the last minute to look for a job or enroll in a training opportunity!

Employers hire when they need new employees, and a slower holiday season for some businesses means more time for hiring. It also can mean less competition for available jobs as other job seekers take a break from their job hunt.

Here are some tips to keep you skating right along. There are jobs, and employers are hiring: Check out the job boards regularly at the MassHire Berkshire Career Center, BerkshireJobs.com, BerkshireEagle.com, Monster, LinkedIn, Indeed and CareerBuilder to see the array of opportunities.

Network. Attend those virtual social and business gatherings to connect with people who can help. Tell everyone you know that you are looking for a job. Someone who knows your strengths may know of an available position that would be perfect for you.

Don’t sit around waiting for your dream job to show up. Get out and volunteer, or take part-time, seasonal and/or temporary work. Employers look highly on those who take the initiative and stay positive, and temporary jobs often become permanent.

Do get organized. Design a new resume, post online and be methodical about your job search. Do something relating to your job search every day. The friendly staff at the MassHire Berkshire Career Center is eager to help spruce up you job-search skills!

Do try to keep a positive attitude and be patient. Understand that it does take some time to find employment, but that your upbeat attitude will help you be successful. Do not let those negative voices in your head get the best of you!

Learn a new skill. There are many certificate and training programs offered to help you get on your career path. Visit masshireberkshire.com to see what training is available. Today’s new education and training opportunity can become tomorrow’s job.

You are not alone: MassHire is here to help

The holiday season usually offers time for thoughts about family and the future as we celebrate religious festivals and begin a new year. For people who are unemployed or are concerned about company downsizing, the season can be filled with great uncertainty.

For those who are challenged by unemployment, please know that opportunities can be found during this season. Visit MassHireBerkshireCC.com for assistance on virtual job searching, career planning, job listings, job clubs, workshops on job-search techniques, data on labor market trends, resources to help find the right training opportunities, and tools to help you conduct an effective job search.

Have a happy, healthy holiday

Give everyone the benefit of the doubt. It’s a chaotic and stressful time, and we are all carrying a heavy load.

Express gratitude. Remember to thank your colleagues, vendors and customers for their support over the past year. Being grateful increases happiness and motivation.

Take a moment and remember all the good things you accomplished, earned, experienced and discovered in 2021. Celebrate your awesomeness, and have a merry and bright new year!

Heather Boulger is executive director of the MassHire Berkshire Workforce Board in Pittsfield.


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