Raise your virtual hand if you’ve read the book Seven Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen R. Covey? So what would the seven habits of highly effective dental hygiene job seekers be?
So, let’s talk about them from a dental hygiene job hunting perspective.
Habit 1: Be Proactive
Don’t let your job search happen to you – you should to happen to it. Don’t wait for job openings. Send postcards, drop in on offices so they can meet you, go to conferences and meetings, ask friends to help you out (almost everyone knows a dentist).
Habit 2: Begin with the End in Mind
Define your dream job. Where is it? How many co-workers would you have? Thirty or sixty minute appointments? Full or part-time? Know what you want so you can avoid chasing what you don’t want. Don’t apply for jobs that are problematic – too many hours, too far away, too many bad reviews, etc.
Habit 3: Put First Things First
Look after your overall wellness. If you are compromised in your personal life – emotionally or physically – focus on you first. Landing a dental hygiene job takes time, preparation, patience, and focus. If you lack any of that your chances of success are diminished and you risk further health decline. Everyone goes through tough times – maybe all you need is a week or a few months away from the search – but recognize and take care of it, then return.
Habit 4: Think Win-Win
Too often job seekers forget that employers have specific needs, too. Offer yourself up as a win or solution to their problem. Acknowledge their problem (in your resume, cover letter, testimonial sheet, CAR sheet and other materials you use to market yourself) that you are a great solution.
Habit 5: Seek First to Understand, Then to be Understood
The only way you are going to understand what their “problem” is (see habit four) is to do some homework. The answer to their problem isn’t to fill a job opening – they want a specific personality, a unique skill set or identifiable traits. Study the job announcement carefully, visit their website and social media pages, talk to people that know their office. Gather this information so you can speak their language and show you truly understand what they need.
Habit 6: Synergize
Read articles, talk to mentors, hire a job hunting coach, get help with your resume or other materials. Sure, you can go it alone if you want, but studies show those that get outside help have a better experience and find work faster.
Habit 7: Sharpen the Saw
Realize that each day is filled with ups and downs. Similar to Habit 3 you need to continually do things to help you get through the low points. Could be physical exercise, shopping with a friend, going to Church – anything that will help renew and refresh your overall outlook. That will project in how you interact with employers – they will see your optimism, confidence, and determination and seek to have you join their team.