Three Things the Unemployed Can Learn from the New Orleans Saints

Who ‘dat! Who ‘dat! Who ‘dat thought the Saints would ever make it to a Super Bowl!

It’s the miracle of all miracles – once the worst of the worst in the NFL, the New Orleans Saints have made it to the main stage of professional football…the Super Bowl.

I’m not going to go into all the sentiment, because likely you’ve seen it on television or read it in the newspaper. They’re calling the Saints “America’s Team”, and no franchise in NFL history has deserved it more.

If you’re unemployed and have struggled for months (maybe even a year) to land that full-time gig, you probably know how the Saints felt until this year. Since 1967, they have been the punching bag of the NFL. In fact, it took until 1987 for them to have a successful season. But after forty years of terrible records and a catastrophic hurricane, the Saints finally came out on the other side. How did they do it? And how does that apply to you and your job search? Three things:

1) Ignore the naysayers. Saints fans are loyal, to say the least. But through hard times, even those folks have turned on their beloved team.  In 1980, the Saints lost a slew games, and a local sportscaster said Saints fans should wear paper bags over their heads at games. The phrase the “Aints” became part of the local lexicon.  This team, which could have given up and eventually collapsed under negative feedback and support, pressed on and now they’re showing the naysayers what they’re made of.

If you’ve got negativity surrounding you in your job search, get rid of it. Ignore it. It won’t help anything. And believe me, if you keep going, you’ll eventually show your detractors who’s boss.

2) Ride out the storm. Loyal fans stayed with the Saints through thick and thin. And even with the Superdome lying in tatters after Katrina, the franchise got to stay in New Orleans, and the city rallied around “their” team like no other point in Saints history. 

Times may be bad, and the market may be grim, but eventually, your time will come. Try to be patient, stay positive and keep doing your best.

3) Employ some top guns. Both the team and the city used this strategy to their advantage. The Saints hired Coach Sean Payton and Drew Brees in 2006, and the rest has been history. The leadership those two have imparted on the team and its hometown have been monumental and helped highlight the talents of many other Saints players who were, frankly, under the radar.  

Sometimes you’ve got to use the right people to make you look good and help elevate you to the place you deserve to be. Don’t be afraid to find them, use them and reward them.

Finally, GEAUX SAINTS!

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