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Professional Primer: How to job hunt with a busy schedule

Written on Jul 31, 2020

By Jessica Salerno, OSCPA content manager

Searching for a new job can become a second job in itself – especially when crafting a resume, searching for open positions and attending interviews has to be done outside of normal work hours. It seems daunting, but it’s not impossible, said Bob Pacanovsky, founder and CEO of the Vation Group.

“We meet with people at so many different hours of the day now,” Pacanovsky said. If you’re limited by your workday responsibilities when scheduling a meeting or interview, he suggested requesting to meet outside of the normal 9 to 5 instead, possibly for an early morning coffee or sometime on the weekend.

Making this request shows respect for your current employer, and a potential employer should appreciate that, said Karen Hough, founder and CEO of ImprovEdge.

But if meeting outside of the workday isn’t an option, and you intend to keep your job hunting discreet, Hough said to be honest and straightforward about the time you need off.

“You should be very careful to use the time you are allotted to say ‘I have an appointment. I need to be gone for two hours today, I’ll see you when I get back,’” she said. No need to lie to your employer or share unnecessary details.

And since you haven’t snagged that new job yet, Hough encouraged job hunters to lean in to their current job. Not giving your full effort and distancing yourself from your work won’t go unnoticed by coworkers or your boss.

“I’ve seen many times where people in the organization notice the person who takes another half day or is wearing a suit, and you see people with their foot out the door,” she said. Leaning into your current job might reenergize you for the position you currently have, or at the very least, allow you to continue to job hunt quietly without drawing suspicion from peers.