September 28, 2011

The Pros and Cons of Job Hunting Groups

Job hunting GroupsSearching for a new job is a lonesome endeavor. The modern job seeker can be something of a recluse, armed only with a computer and cellphone, sitting alone at home or in coffee shops and public libraries – endlessly chasing after Internet job leads. These individuals commit themselves to solitary confinement in hopes that their diligence will pay off in the form of new job opportunities.

Undeniably, The strategy has its merits – a solid search effort and the right attitude will often reward those who put in the time and effort. But solitary job seeking isn’t for everyone. Some people prefer to work with recruiters, or fall back onto a network of social allegiances to help them find employment. The right support network can come from anywhere – even fellow job seekers…

Job Hunting Groups: What You Should Know

Pro #1: When increasingly weary job seekers find themselves in a rut, so-called Job Hunting Groups (Or Job Hunting Meetups, Parties, etc) may be the answer. The organized gatherings take place all across the globe, bringing together fellow job seekers to network, share job seeking strategies, and boost morale in tough times.

Pro #2: Proponents of the get-togethers say that part of job seeking should be a social affair, arguing that self-imposed isolation is bad for morale and that Groups exist to get job seekers out of the house for a couple of hours to share ideas and let some steam off.

Con #1: On the other hand, modern job seeker might argue that Job Hunting Groups are archaic and a waste of time. Why go out when you can join a LinkedIn group and post questions and comments on a job seeking forum? Same thing right? Maybe not for everyone – some would say that you can’t completely replace good old fashioned face-to-face interaction.

Con #2: The most biting criticism of Job Hunting Groups suggests that the Groups are inherently flawed. How can members help one another when they can’t even help themselves? Detractors would say that the Group’s overarching attitude of “strength in numbers” is a cover-up for members being “out of ideas.” If everybody attending is looking for a job, then how does that help anyone find work? They cant hire each other! Why hang out with losers?

Joining a Job Hunting Group is a personal choice and should be viewed as a shoulder to lean on, not as a free ride to a new job. Through useful advice, motivation, and face-to-face networking, the right group can be the spark that leads to a fantastic opportunity – just remember that it’s still up to you to make things happen.

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Marie is a writer for covering career advice, recruitment topics, and HR issues. She has an educational background in languages and literature as well as corporate experience in Human Resources.