Monday, October 27, 2014

Face Your Fear and NETWORK!

"Networking:  Do I have to?" asks the reluctant job seeker.

      Yes you do if you want to find a better job quicker!

If you dread the idea of going up to strangers whose paths you cross and striking up a conversation, you are far from alone.  Many, if not most folks - if the truth were told - dread the idea.  They’d rather have a root canal.

However, the truth is that many, if not most, opportunities are found through networking.  These wonderful positions never see the light of an advertisement.  If they do, it is often late in the process, meaning many suitable candidates have already made the hiring employer aware of them and their capabilities.

The Hidden Market
 These unadvertised (or late-in-the-game advertised) positions are found in what is called -- and aptly so --  the Hidden Market.  It is the employment market that is accessed through people and it is the market where some of the best positions reside.

Networking opens the door to the Hidden Market.
Networking opens the door.  Positions are found on the Hidden Market by talking and connecting with folks who work for a firm and know of needs or open jobs, or by talking to folks who know some folks who know of opportunities  . . .  You get the idea!

It gets easier 
Networking can be a little intimidating when you first begin.  But, as many of my clients tell me, it gets easier as they network more and more.  A bonus is meeting new and interesting people, as well as reconnecting with past contacts, and that increases your own valuable network. 

The Open Market - A slow process
Sure, it is still possible to find a job by sitting at your computer for hours, if not days, on end, applying for 100's if not 1000's of jobs that you find on the Open Market and hoping one of them will get back to you.  It is an avenue to a new job, but it is a choice that generally results in a long, long, long search.  It is a slow process.

Or you can choose to network.  Networking speeds things up.  Adding networking to your daily routine uncovers positions faster  --  before they are openly advertised, or in many cases, never openly advertised.

Face your fear and NETWORK! 
So, if networking is a scary thing, face your fear, bite the bullet, and do it anyway.  There are many benefits to be gained from networking, and it just might help you find your dream job!

For additional information on marketing yourself and your capabilities, please refer to the many articles found under the Articles tabs of the AJC–Career Strategy website, including:
 ____________________________________________________________________________                 AJC - for Your Career Path
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Twitter:  @AfterJobClub

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Managing a Job Search is Like Managing a Project

Managing an effective job search is akin to managing any important project. Whether you are beginning a new search or seeking to revitalize an ongoing search,  plan to employ the project management skills you would use on any important project in order to successfully and effectively achieve your goal.

Preparation is key to succeed at finding the job you want.  Jumping out of the frying pan and into the fire, or firing off resumes at any and every opening that comes along, termed "shotgunning"is usually an exercise in frustration in the long run.

Learning the steps involved and preparing a "job search strategy" is the first step. As you begin your search, or take a step back to regroup an ongoing search, figure out your goal as follows:
  • Identify the type of job, or expanded role, you are seeking and write it down.
Continue your planning with market research.
  • Gain information and knowledge about the need and market for the type of work you want to do. 
  • Identify what industries and locales hire your skill set.
Acquire the project management tools you’ll need to get organized and perform the work of the project.
  • Establish your workspace.  If finding a job is a job . . . .  and it is . . . . set up your work space or office.  You'll need office tools to conduct and manage your search, so take the time to organize your office, computer, phone, files, etc.  
  • Create, or revise, your marketing tools:  Resume, marketing plan, "L"vator speech, networking plan, business cards, annotated reference list, bio, and portfolio.
    • Your resume needs to be focused on acquiring a specific type of job. Your other marketing materials - "L:vator speech, cover letters, bio, etc - also need to be similarly focused.
    • Focus, revise, and update your marketing materials to align with and support achievement of your goal.  The skills, knowledge, experience, and accomplishments you list should show that you can do the job and be an asset to the hiring firm.
    • If your resume doesn't present information that shows you have the necessary skills, knowledge, experience, and accomplishments to do the job, rewrite it.
    •  If you are searching for 2 different types of jobs, such as grant writing and public relations, or engineering and business development, develop two sets of marketing tools (i.e., resume, “L”vator speech, bio, etc.).        
Market and Execute: 
With your goal clearly in mind, your work space or office organized, and your marketing materials focused on your goal, set off on your search in earnest.  Execute your search by marketing yourself and your capabilities.
  • Organize your work day to include time for research, networking, attending events, and eventually interviewing for ideal jobs and then negotiating your offerS!
So begin at the beginning.
Invest the time up front to get organized and plan a strategic job search.  The investment will speed you on your way and pay off in conducting a more focused, faster, and rewarding search.

For additional information on marketing yourself and your capabilities, please refer to the many articles found under the Articles tabs of the AJC–Career Strategy website.
 ____________________________________________________________________________                 AJC - for Your Career Path
  Linked In:        
Twitter:  @AfterJobClub

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Lern to tell stories

Interviewing?  Learn to tell stories.  People remember them long after a resistation of facts and figures is forgotten.

Telling a good story about an accomplishment, an achievement, a problem solved, a sticky situation handled, etc. will be remembered by an interviewer long after a resitation of a list of your strengths or dates of promotions etc.

And, as a savvy job seeker, your goal is to be remembered by a prospective employer.