Patience and Perseverance in a Job Search: Jessica Ridgway’s Success Story

Knowing what you want, and knowing what you’re willing to compromise is critical to determining your next move. Jessica Ridgway discovered that approaching her job search with patience and perseverance was the best approach, instead of jumping into a new role that was not a great fit. In the end, she found a position that’s the an ideal combination of her passion for helping others and her enthusiasm for writing content.

What do you do for a career? Who do you work for?

I work for Swaim Strategies, a company based here in Portland that helps nonprofit organizations further their missions through strategic event planning and storytelling. I create marketing content for our clients that help them reach, cultivate, and maintain supporters in order to leverage their goals and efforts.

How long did it take you to find this job?

Almost two years from the moment I realized I needed a change from my full-time job.

How did you find your job? What resources did you use? What tool or tactic helped the most?

I found my job through Mac’s List, and on a whim! But I also had Job Alerts from Indeed set up and would browse Craigslist, JournalismJobs, and Monster from time to time. Looking for a job is practically a job in itself, so I found it helpful to allot some time each week to actively search and review open postings.

What was the most difficult part of your job search? How did you overcome this challenge?

Being patient and not jumping at every open opportunity. When you’re eager for something new, it can make your current job situation difficult to endure. Don’t be willing to take whatever you can get. I constantly had to remind myself that if I was going to leave my job, it had to be for something better and, most importantly, right for me. The last thing I wanted to do was fall into a new situation and feel the same way I felt with my old employer.

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What is the single best piece of advice you would offer other job-seekers?

It pays to be diligent with your search, patient with yourself, and to have some idea of what it is you want to do with your career.

Why do you love your job?

My job is the perfect blend of the two qualifications I most desired when starting my search. I wanted to write and I wanted to help people, and at Swaim I get to do that every single day. I feel challenged and motivated to push myself to produce the best work for our clientele who positively impact and push for change in our community.