I hear it all the time. Young people with college degrees and a couple of years work experience are finding themselves jobless. And the job hunt is depressing and hopeless. It seems that the offers are at a ridiculous hourly rate that approximates a fast food restaurant. So then what can you do when the odds are stacked against you and you can’t find a job? Create a job!

This may sound ridiculous, but in these times many companies are more likely to take a chance with a consultant who doesn’t require vacation, time off and insurance than on a full time employee. So here’s a thought – create a consulting company showcasing your skills and talents. Step ONE – determine what you want to do. Once you’ve determined what it is you’d like to do (let’s say you want to work on social networking – every company needs help with that today), now you need to work on step TWO – create a brand identity for your business. You have to hang up a sign, so to speak, and let people know you’re in business and what you stand for.

Perhaps you name it “Ultimate Networking” and you’re ready for step THREE – define the services you provide. What is it you actually do? Do you write posts and entries? Make recommendations on social media platforms? Study analytics? Write blogs? All of the above? The next step FOUR – you must price those services. This is the tricky part. How you price your services may determine the likelihood of gaining customers. I suggest monthly consulting arrangement that is affordable. If you charge someone, say $500.00/month, it’s a lot easier to digest than a big payout. And if you get 5 or 6 of these business relationships under your belt, well your standard of living can immediately improve.

Now that you’ve created a business enterprise, and have a pricing structure in place, you need step FIVE – to get clients and promote your brand. It’s not as difficult as you may think. Go specifically to those help wanted ads and present an option to those companies of a (1099) working situation, where you assist them on a part time basis and do some of the work from home as well. Perhaps you work 10 hours a week for 4 clients instead of 40 hours a week for one employer.

Begin to look at work relationships as CLIENTS rather than employers. Networking to meet people needing your skill set means attending meetup.com meetings, and talking up what it is you do to strangers. These five steps will begin to empower you and give you the good feeling that you’re working TOWARD something rather than waiting to be chosen. You may surprise yourself what a well designed brand, website, logo and mission statement will do for your business. People will take you seriously and you’ll be on your way. Step 6, though I didn’t mention there would be one, is to ALWAYS stay on TOP OF YOUR GAME through research etc so that you’re invaluable to your clients and they will continue to retain you.

Take charge of your career today. You’ll be happy you did.