It’s St. Patty’s Day and we’ve all heard about the luck ‘o the Irish. The expression actually has its roots in a bit of irony. Rather than necessarily being lucky, the Irish leaned into their positive attitude to get through a history filled with difficulties. If you’re counting on a bit of Irish luck in your job search, a little never hurts but a positive attitude and lot of hard work will work better.
In ‘1001 Things Everyone Should Know About Irish American History,’ author Edward T. O’Donell, shares that the origin of the expression started in America and comes from the gold rush years. “A number of the most famous and successful miners were of Irish and Irish American birth . . . Over time this association of the Irish with mining fortunes led to the expression ‘luck of the Irish.’ Of course, it carried with it a certain tone of derision, as if to say, only by sheer luck, as opposed to brains, could these fools succeed.”
All my Irish friends are very smart and I’m sure that you’re no fool if you’re reading up on job search advice. After you’ve finished celebrating St. Patrick, whether it’s with a parade, a green beer, a pub crawl or a hearty Irish stew, here are 3 things you can do that might bring more luck, a preferably results, to your job search.
- Narrow your focus. If you’re not sure what you want to do, this can be very hard but an unfocused, overly broad job search will mean more effort and time on your end, fewer results and more disappointment. You can narrow your search a number of ways: by profession, industry, geography or by targeting specific companies. Spend some time early on thinking about what you want in a job and what you are naturally good at, and use that to narrow your focus.
- Mine your connections. Irish pride runs deep and so does their loyalty to true friends. Lean into your friends and family for advice and introductions to others who can expand your network. Do the same for your friends too. A broad circle of friends may be your best job search secret weapon.
There are good ships and there are wood ships,
the ships that sail the sea.
But the best ships are friendships
and may they always be.
- “If you can’t dazzle them with brilliance, baffle them with blarney.” Great advice for a bar conversation, but terrible for an interview. Always prepare for an interview, do your research, know your strengths and how you can put them to work for the company. Even if you might not have the highest GPA, a positive attitude, self-awareness and being likeable will take you a long way.
An old Irish proverb states: “The future is not set. There is no fate but what we make for ourselves.” Wonderful advice for job searchers. Ádh mór to you.