Market Yourself: Put a Bounty on Your Dream Job

The economy is tough, and you’re looking for a job. But braving career fairs and online job sites can be frustrating and fruitless. Just this week, hundreds camped out for job openings at the Miami fire department.

And, indeed, these are tough times. Unemployment is at a 16-year high (7.2%) and job seekers outnumber openings three to one.

Source: CNBC
Source: CNN Money

With such dire prospects, you may need to get creative and learn to market yourself in ways you might not have considered before.

For inspiration, look to Jacob Share, who was looking for a position as a Web development manager. He started a chain email by sending his resume and desired job description to his personal contacts, asking them to send it on to anyone they knew who might be able to help. He offered $150 to the person who led him to land a job. And it worked.

Others have purchased billboard space or are wearing T-shirts with their own job ad written on them.

So remember, even though the best way to find a job is through personal networking, it probably wouldn’t hurt to brainstorm a few out-of-the-box ways to market yourself.

Target Issues Layoffs: At Least 1,000 To Lose Jobs

Target to cut workforce, issue layoffs
Target to cut workforce, issue layoffs

Target has announced that it will cut 9% of its headquarters staff and close a Arkansas distribution center,  which includes 600 employees and 400 open positions, according to a statement issued by the company. These changes will be effective immediately.

Target will also close a distribution center in Arkansas, which employes another 500 people, later in the year.

“We are clearly operating in an unprecedented economic environment that requires us to make some extremely difficult decisions to ensure Target remains competitive over the long term,” Gregg Steinhafel, president and chief executive, said in the release.

Target has taken other steps to cut costs as well, including salary freezes for senior management, suspending share repurchase activity, tightening credit card underwriting and granting, improving store productivity as well as cutting back on opening new stores.

This follows months of lower-than-expected sales at Target stores, as the retail industry continues to struggle. This, combined with a poor outlook throughout 2009, the company claims its actions are a conservative approach to planning.

From the release:

Headquarters employees affected by the announcement will continue to receive their full pay and benefits through April 1, after which they will receive a comprehensive separation package based on their years of service. As part of that package, Target also will provide these employees with 12 months of continued Target health care benefits in addition to 12 months COBRA benefit, and outplacement support to assist them in transitioning to their next position. Little Rock distribution center employees will be offered positions at other Target distribution centers, or will receive comparable severance.

As a result of these actions, the company expects to record a charge of approximately 3 cents per diluted share, the majority of which will occur in the company’s 2008 fourth quarter. The company believes the annualized benefit resulting from these actions will exceed the charge.

Economic Stimulus: Where Will Jobs Be Created?

As President Barack Obama seeks to get Congressional approval for an economic stimulus package by mid February, it is interesting to look at where the proposed stimulus would create jobs. The Wall Street Journal has released information about where jobs would be created, as released in a report by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The total number of jobs expected to be created is 3,675,000.

Obama Is Seeking Congressional Approval For An Economic Stimulus Package
Obama Is Seeking Congressional Approval For An Economic Stimulus Package

The most jobs will be created in government jobs as government spending increases. Construction jobs, which will increase by almost 7 million jobs, will experience the largest percentage increase in jobs.

Industry Jobs Created Number of jobs in industry* Percent increase
Mining 26,000 802,000 3.0%
Construction 678,000 6,833,000 9.9%
Manufacturing — Total 408,000 12,981,000 3.1%
Wholesale Trade 158,000 5,909,400 2.7%
Retail Trade 604,000 14,965,500 4.0%
Information 50,000 2,933,000 1.7%
Financial Activities 214,000 8,104,000 2.6%
Professional and Business Services 345,000 17,450,000 2.0%
Education and Health Services 240,000 19,104,000 1.2%
Leisure and Hospitality 499,000 13,468,000 3.7%
Other Services 99,000 5,467,000 1.8%
Utilities 11,000 564,400 1.9%
Transportation and Warehousing 98,000 4,393,800 2.2%
Government — Total 244,000 22,514,000 1.1%