Job Search For Normal People
Have you ever had a recruiter reach out specifically to you? Me either. I like to think of myself as a normal person, one who never rated a recruiter’s interest in contacting me. That type of job service sounds nice though.
Any time in your career you find yourself looking for work, you are supposed to reach out to friends. These contacts will have the inside line to available insights on new positions, making continuous networking the most important aspect of employee mobility.
You can also follow the masses trying to capitalize on the thousands of jobs posted online. The possibilities are endless, right? However, there are thousands of applicants out there as well. With each job receiving an average of more than 600 applicants, the process turns into a lottery. Believe it or not, recruiters and hiring managers don’t look at all 600 resumes to decide who they want to interview. They pick the first 10 resumes that look close and then stop searching.
The hiring process is a crapshoot. Most of these actions are random. So, when you need a job the most, you are at the mercy of the employment gods. Unfortunately, this is making a change from a point of weakness, not strength. When you’re looking for your dream job, your odds improve when you already have a job.
This starts with knowing the field you want to work in. How do you want to contribute to society? Research the field and enhance your understanding of the industry. Companies want to hire industry insiders.
Next, research all the players in the industry. Understand the competition. Figure out who the thought leaders are. What’s new or on the cutting edge of industry innovation?
You then want to break into an employer’s clubhouse. Start by booking demonstrations of their main products. Interact with the sales teams to get a great feel for the company and gain the ability to compare products against one another. For example, let’s say you work in human resources, specializing in technological systems. So, you schedule demos with payroll providers to understand the capabilities and limitations of each software platform. First, that is gold mine information to take into any interview so you can explain the key points of their products and what separates them from their competitors. Second, during the demos, you have an opportunity to network with people in the company you are trying to get into. You continue to keep in contact with these assets, and while they believe that they are selling to you, you are selling yourself to them.
The best insight gained, though, is into which company fits with you. By the end of the process, you should know which company you best align with. You should also have contacts at that company. Then, the waiting game starts until the right role opens, when you leverage your newfound network to get your foot in the door. The wrong time to find your dream job is when you need it.
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