Try This to Secure a Dream Career

NEW YORK (MainStreet) — Photographing celebrities for fashion magazines has been Angelo Kritikos's dream since high school. Named "Top Upcoming Photographer" by W MAGAZINE, Kritikos is one of the lucky few who has achieved his dream job.

"Fashion photography is my career," Kritikos told MainStreet. "I absolutely love what I do which makes it not feel like work."

That's not to say there weren't obstacles along the way.

"Being placed on the back burner has always been the most difficult obstacle, but it's what helps me get ahead in the long run," Kritikos said. "I never give haters attention."

The Chicago native is living his dream today partly because he refused to accept no for an answer.

"I quickly learned not to become sensitive to rejection or the word no," said Kritikos whose photography can be found in various magazines including Glamour, Seventeen, Maxim, Marie Claire, Cosmopolitan and Interview. "It doesn't phase me anymore. It only keeps me more motivated to work hard."

Although landing a dream job can be challenging, it's not impossible.

"The world needs to know what you are looking for so they can help you find it," said Phil Blair, career expert and author of Job Won! 500,000 Hires and Counting (Author House 2013). "Spread the word of what you are looking for. Make yourselves available."

Kritikos advises being patient and staying focused.

"Create your long-term goal, break it down into baby steps and take it one step at a time," said Kritikos. "See every experience or opportunity as a positive one. Things will fall into place when the timing is right and when you've put in the work."

Blair advises looking in your own backyard first.

"Use your network," Blair told MainStreet. "Ask every friend, relative, teacher, former co-worker and casual acquaintance whether they've heard of a job opening. Tell them about your job search. This is no time to be bashful."

Applying directly to an employer can also be fruitful.

"Look for employers whose fields interest you, whose company you admire and would want to pursue," said Blair, co-owner of Manpower San Diego, an employment franchise. "Don't be afraid to visit the company, well dressed with resume in hand. Even in tough job markets, there are and always will be job openings. Some will be widely publicized but most will not."

For a specialized skill set or advanced career experience, recruiters can be beneficial.

"This is a high-end, high-level option," Blair said. "Contact any professional recruiter or executive search firm that you know of that specializes in your skill set and if a recruiter contacts you, always hear them out."

In addition to the internet, don't overlook traditional methods.

"Only 25% of new jobs are found these days through newspaper ads, but they still remain an important place to visit to take the pulse of the local job market," Blair said. "There are a myriad of job listing sites, bulletin boards and other places on the Web that provide information and advertise positions. The converse of looking for jobs posted is to post your resume online."

Finally, never stop dreaming once one career goal is achieved.

"I hope to take on bigger and more challenging projects as my career blossoms," said Kritikos. "I'd love to eventually study abroad, moonlight as a fashion editor, collaborate on a fashion line, open up an art gallery, create a feature film and the list goes on and on."

--Written by Juliette Fairley for MainStreet

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