How to turn your seasonal job into a full-time gig

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(MoneyWatch) Hundreds of thousands of seasonal retail workers were hired in November. Some of these employees are already employed (or underemployed) people trying to earn a little extra cash over the holidays. Others are students looking to earn some money on their break. Some, however, don't see this as a temporary situation. They are unemployed workers looking to turn a short-term opportunity over November and December into a full-time position by the new year. There's a lot of competition for those coveted spots, but it can be done. Here are some tips that can help temporary workers become full-time employees.

Be flexible with your time.

The reason companies hire seasonally is because demand is up and regular workers are busy with the extra workload and their own holiday schedules. "The employees that tend to stand out are the ones that are flexible with their time and adaptable to all of the many unexpected situations that arise during the holiday season," says leadership strategist Nicole Lipkin. Show a potential boss you want to make their life easier, and they'll be more likely to welcome you into the fold.

Let them know you want more.

The first step is doing a great job, and the second is letting the powers that be know that you want to continue doing it. "If the bosses don't even know you want to stay long-term, it's quite likely they won't consider you for any longer-range positions coming up," says Jenny Foss, career adviser and founder of JobJenny.com. Depending on the company culture, you can pick a down time to have an impromptu talk with your manager, or make an appointment with HR to discuss any open positions.

Become part of the team.

At the end of the holiday season, a manager may talk to the whole team about who to bring on permanently, and you want your name to be first on that list. You don't have to be best buddies with your colleagues, but you should be known for doing great work and making others around you look good. "Always remember, people prefer to work with people they like and respect," says Lipkin. If you already seem like part of the team by Dec. 31, you may very well be by 2013.

Photo courtesy of Wikimedia Commons user LamRainCrystal

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    Amy Levin-Epstein is a freelance writer who has been published in dozens of magazines (including Glamour, Self and Redbook), websites (including AOLHealth.com, Babble.com and Details.com) and newspapers (including The New York Post and the Boston Globe). To read more of her writing, visit AmyLevinEpstein.com.

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