By Joyce Lain Kennedy


My brother has been looking for a financial services manager's job for five months. He plans to take a break after Thanksgiving. He says no one wants to be bothered with job seekers during the holidays. Since I'm paying the rent, I think he should keep working his job-search campaign. Can you help me out with this issue? -- C.A.P.


It's true that some hiring managers ignore candidates until January as they concentrate on closing the year's business to avoid receiving flak from their bosses -- or to carve out time for their own partying.

But in the big picture, the odds favor holiday hunting, argues a major career authority. "In this highly competitive economy, job seekers should not take the holiday season off," says Tony Lee, publisher of Adicio's job and career website,

Among key advantages for staying on the case in a job search: Lee cites diminished competition during upcoming merrymaking days as less-motivated searchers take a break; increased availability of hiring managers as they remain in town for family celebrations; more cheerful connecting with others as a result of the holiday spirit; and, to improve your chances of starting a new job in January, interviewing must occur before then.

The publisher offers four specific holiday hunting tips for job seekers.


The holidays are a great excuse to get back in touch with former bosses and coworkers, college roommates, high school buddies and others who may be able to help you in your job search.


Use social networks to reinforce and expand your reach. Make a list of the companies you're most interested in and send holiday greetings through LinkedIn, Facebook and/or Twitter to see if you have any connections at your target companies and to get the word out about your job search. However, if you're currently employed, hold back on the side of caution to keep your current job intact.


If you're employed but looking, send holiday cards with your business card enclosed to hiring managers, recruiters, potential employers and key friends with connections. Ask for guidance during this holiday season as you confidentially search for a new opportunity.


Stay motivated and keep your job search on track by sticking to a schedule of daily action items that you can accomplish during the holidays.



I will graduate from college in May and have no student work experience. Everyone keeps telling me to get an internship if I hope to become employed after graduation. Am I too late? -- L.B.


Listen to everyone. I hope it's not too late for you to lasso an internship for the spring semester -- you may have to take an unpaid internship. (Some students have actually paid scouts to find them unpaid internships!) Make tracks to your school's internship office, career center and the office of any professor in your major.

Employers are heavily invested in turning interns into full-time regular hires after graduation. Even if you don't transition into a full-time job at the company where you intern, you improve your status with other employers who value student work experience.

Read the most recent employment projections for the class of 2011 by hopping onto the website of the National Association of Colleges and Employers (, and click on "press room." Prospects are somewhat better for the 2011 class than they were for the 2010 crop of graduates.

Available at

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Interpersonal Edge: Breakthrough Tools for Talking to Anyone, Anywhere, about Anything


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