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The process of applying to jobs can be many things: tedious, stressful, and sometimes just outright overwhelming. While buried under piles of applications and job descriptions, it becomes difficult to remember the end goal, which is to find a job and working environment in which you can excel. That is why we are so grateful for people like Jenn Walker Wall. 

As a career strategist and founder of her own career training and coaching company, Jenn has dedicated her career to helping others excel at their own with her purposeful, holistic approach.

“When we say holistic,” Jenn says, “We mean taking time to assess what is going to be best for you, what you want, and asking hard questions throughout the negotiation phase.”

In a world filled with change, it is only natural that our interests and needs change as we learn. This past year, for example, Jenn has witnessed the economic impact of the coronavirus firsthand, and has seen how job seekers’ needs have changed because of it.

For one, in 2020, Jenn has seen employees become much more selective in their job searches. 

“Where people chose to spend their time and energy as an employee took on a whole new level in the past year, and we got to see the generous employers and the not so generous,” Jenn says.

While some companies have given employees paid time off or even supplied PPE equipment to frontline workers, others have not been so lucky. Many workers have experienced unsafe working conditions and even layoffs. For this reason, Jenn emphasizes the importance of saying no.

“I wanted to help people not just get picked for a job but see themselves as picking a job,” she tells us. “It really impresses me when people can say no, and put themselves in a position to say yes to the things they do want.”

Jenn has also seen the pandemic take a toll on people’s motivation and energy. With the majority of us trapped in our homes for the better part of the last year, the line between our work and personal lives has blurred, making it more difficult to be productive. 

Luckily, our career expert has more advice to share. Jenn stresses the importance of setting boundaries and establishing a schedule for yourself, and tells everyone to give themselves “loads of self-compassion.”

When asked what advice she would give to recent graduates in the pandemic, Jenn says, “It is important that young professionals remember their value. Organizations cannot run without interns or junior staff.”

She continues, “Think about what you want. Don’t be surprised if you get the job and it’s not what you thought.” 

Most importantly, remember that your needs can and will change. Be open to the journey and give yourself permission to pivot.