5 Steps to Super-Charging Your Job Search
It’s going to be a tough Job Market for the foreseeable future, so we can’t just ‘do the same thing’ and expect different results: We Have To Change!
In my Self-Recruiter® Lecture Series on Job Search and Career Management, I often ask those in the audience about the challenges that they are facing; the results that they are getting (or not); and about how it leaves them feeling. No surprise in the results categories. Many respond with very expected feelings of anger, frustration, disillusionment, and feeling more desperate, hopeless –and plain mad, and powerless.
Those are tough words, but they represent the real feelings of the majority of Job Seekers today. But, we have to look deeper than the ‘why’: Why are people not calling us; or why are we getting little or no response to applications; or no calls for interviews; or no call-backs for further meetings and interviews.
It’s really about CONTROL.
We feel all of these things because there seems to be very little, if any, communication or dialogue happening. The Job Seeker may feel at the mercy of a website where they just keep hitting ‘submit’ –and never have any experience other than silence in return.
Take Back Control For Yourself In Your Job Search
You CAN learn the strategies, tips and techniques to ‘Change The Equation In Your Job Search’, but, you must be willing to shed the ways of the past that have not worked –and be ready to try new techniques that may be scary to you. But, those new ideas and new ways will help you to increase the results in your Job Search efforts.
It Starts With You, With A Commitment To Take New Steps, In New Directions
So, get ready to step:
5 Steps to Super-Charging Your Job Search
1. Understand that when we are looking for a new job, or our next career step, if we are not seeing the ACTIVITY that is NECESSARY which can LEAD to our efforts being a SUCCESS…
(Calls, Outreach from Interested Employers / Recruiters, Interviews, Phone Screen Interviews, Informational Interviews, Phone discussions with Decision-makers, etc.)
Then, we may be part of what’s blocking our own success.
This understanding, and acceptance, is critical to CHANGING what’s NECESSARY to change our results.
No more HOPING it will change on its OWN.
Only after this step, are we ready to move ahead.
2. Review, Ready, and Improve Your Marketing Materials… NOW!
Your Job Search Marketing Materials… Your:
Resume, LinkedIn Profile, Your Email Messages (Pre-Cover Letter), Your Cover Letter, Your Signature Block in your email (that should be positioning and selling your professionalism), Your Business Card (whether working or not), and any other materials that you use (including Thank You cards, Envelopes, etc.)))
“Your Resume Is Not Working”
Your Resume has a job: it’s to get you the interview!
If it’s not, then it likely needs to be significantly rethought. It, in my view, needs to be a Simple Sales Sheet that creates desire about you as a Job Candidate. Not a biography, or a career summary, or a laundry list of simply everything –it needs to be about creating FOCUSED VALUE about You!
Be sure to ‘tell your career story’ persuasively, or hire someone that can help you to do so (I’m an expert, by the way).
And, Don’t Miss The Boat On LinkedIn…
It’s factoring into the decision, according to the managers that I speak with, in the sorting process (before the interview stage) –in about 50% of the hiring processes! If you are not on LinkedIn, or are not their effectively positioning and selling your very best attributes –you are already being left behind.
THINK: 3-Dimensional Sales Brochure.
You have lots of ‘real estate’ within your LinkedIn profile space, so be sure to MAXIMIZE it! If your profile looks like a basic resume (or even less), take action now.
Tell your career story with ONE GOAL in mind: Make sure it compels the interested reader to ONE CONCLUSION:
“If I hire this individual, it will be the BEST business decision that I will make TODAY.”
That’s the Job of Your LinkedIn Profile –if you need help, well, again, I am an expert.
Don’t just stay the same and expect different results.
Change and go after those results that you are desiring to achieve in your Job Search.
Now, carry this new focus on your resume and LinkedIn profile across the rest of your marketing materials to help communicate that IT WILL BE the ‘Best Business Decision’ that they will make today to hire you.
3. Stop Interviewing ‘On Demand’
What do I mean? Stop interviewing without truly being prepared.
That means no answered phone calls when you don’t know who’s calling. Let it go to voicemail, listen, strategize, then call back with your effectively packaged message about why you are the most valuable candidate that they are likely to speak with about the roll –here again, I can help you craft your value messages about yourself (and it’s a very good investment for your career future, as you will use these techniques throughout your work-life).
Also understand how to Build Chemistry with Anyone, as Chemistry is 1 of the 2 reasons that a qualified individual gets chosen. I can teach you a number of techniques to lay the foundations of Chemistry, whether in phone conversation with people that you have never spoken to before; during your interview process; and even in your outreach and messaging efforts.
And, let’s not forget CONFIDENCE –the other reason a qualified individual gets chosen for the opportunity. I know that it can be very difficult to be confident when in Job Search during this very tough market, but I can help you prepare in ways that you had not thought of, or put into practice before.
And those techniques are ones that you can use now and in the future to always be your very best.
4. Find The Companies That You Want To Work For (NOT The Job Postings)
Yes, Job Postings have their place in our Job Search –as a small percentage of what we SHOULD be doing to create the activity necessary for any successful Job Search. But, Job Postings should be playing a much smaller role, than the staring role!
The SECRET most people don’t realize: Most of those postings (by companies of any size), were purchased or committed to sometime in the past –even as long as just about a year ago! That’s the only way the contracts for the Job Postings get a cost rate-per-posting that makes any sense. But, how would they know what they want to hire this year, if they made the decision last year? (they don’t, or didn’t –when they signed those contracts). So companies ‘just keep posting’ to use up their supply, and to keep building a ‘pool’ of potential hires for some future opening –whenever that comes.
That means: a significant number of postings that you see do not represent jobs that they are truly ready to interview and hire for at this time. So, let’s spend some of our INVESTED TIME looking for the right companies that would want to hire us, and our talents –if they had an opening (or upcoming opening). Now, those would be GREAT companies to introduce yourself and your value to, and a very good use of your Job Search time.
To Discover Undiscovered Companies That Are Right For Your Background…
Use reverse search techniques in LinkedIn to find similar individuals, such as yourself, and look at something called a “One Back, One Forward”, which will help you see where folks just like you came from, any where they went to –that’s valuable information that use can use to help you find companies that might naturally hire someone with your background. And those would be great companies to then look up decision-makers (using LinkedIn) and begin your marketing outreach to introduce your value to them.
5. Pick Up Your Phone, Or Use That Keyboard To Communicate Your Value With Real Decision-Makers.
Yes, courage is required.
It can be scary to reach out to someone that you have never met –or even spoken to before. And, as you may have guessed, I’m a great coach that helps individuals understand how to make winning introduction calls –so keep me in mind if you decide that you need help.
If you’re not ready to pick up the phone, then at least pick up that keyboard and type out a great value-filled message about you and your very specific interest in them. Start a conversation of equals: both you and the decision-maker are individuals that are valuable, so reach out to them as an equal, in a professional, but equal way that shows that you respect them by making your message valuable to them (it has to be about them, even though it’s always about us).
Are you looking for a position within the HR Department? Great, then your decision-makers are also within the HR Department.
For ALL Others: Your Decision-makers are not in the HR Department, so locate them (using LinkedIn and other tools) and then bravely, with value, reach out and professionally introduce yourself. Let them know why you are so interested in their company (it cannot be that you need a job, as everyone needs a job), and what it is that you bring to the table that makes you a potential valuable addition to consider for their team.
Now, you’ve positioned yourself to get very lucky and get the ‘lightning’ strike (from your hard work and use of intellect) that recruiters are always chasing in their marketing efforts for the candidates that they represent –except that you’ve done it for the very best candidate: YOU!
Let’s Get Started & Take Back Control In Your Job Search
Author, Career Coach & Speaker
on Job Search and Career Management
© John Crant
As seen and quoted in The Wall Street Journal, on FINS.com, on CareerBuilder’s CBsalary.com, on The Ladders, in The New York Post, The Huffington Post, in Essence magazine, in CRAIN’S New York Business, on Forbes.com, in amNY, and on CNN, BBC, FOX News, Arise TV – John shares the answers and the concrete steps for success in Job Search.
John is a Featured Speaker at The New York Public Library’s JOB SEARCH CENTRAL, as well as at the YMCA in New York City, and is a Social Media expert for Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses Program.
He speaks at Corporate Events, works with Workforce Development organizations, and teaches both students and alumni with this Self-Recruiter® Series for Colleges and Universities.
Changing the Rules: How to Be Your Own Recruiter &
Ride the Economic Crisis to Your Next Career Challenge.
© 2009 John Crant
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