Dear Coach Joan: Career Advice
I’ve got to share with you updates from a current job seeking client, let’s call her Valerie. She writes that after an informational meeting at a company she’s very interested in, the individual she met with called to say she was impressed with Valerie’s background and credentials but sadly, her company doesn’t have any positions open that would be a good fit for her. However, she asked if she had permission to forward her resume to a colleague who is an executive recruiter who might know of appropriate openings. Naturally, my client said, yes. Following that, Valerie emailed me, surprised and happy that this recommendation was being made.
So let’s look at this. The individual Valerie met with was impressed with her and thought to recommend her to the recruiter she knew.
Job Seekers: This is way people sometimes end up getting hired!
As a job seeker you want to do everything you can to create a RIPPLE EFFECT. You meet one person, then they refer you to two others. Then they refer you to others, and your ripple effect grows, you reach more people.
But instead of making it an unintentional part of your job search, I strongly suggest you bring intentionality to the idea of creating a RIPPLE EFFECT. The more qualified people who know about you and your skills, the better chances you’ll find that person who can hire you! Make your availability known and and your materials circulated far and wide..to the right people.
I always say: READINESS + OPPORTUNITY = SUCCESS
Clearly, as a job seeker you know (or should know) that you need to build effective, compelling job tools; a resume, a linked in profile, letter of recommendation. And you need to become ready for meetings by crafting your clear capabilities and proof points of achievements that support your claims. You need to research your field and identify companies and organizations you’d like to work in. You also need to prepare intelligent questions that show your knowledge of the company, their competitors, the industry they are in, the challenges and opportunities they face. You need to earn the right to ask intelligent questions but first ‘selling’ yourself by showing that you have the basic qualifications they are looking for.
Let’s make your ripple effect happen! Here are some ways to expedite it…
1.At the end of every job seeking discussion, whether it is an actual interview, an informational interview, a meeting with a former colleague or manager, a professor in your field, anyone who might be connected with anyone who might know of a job in your field, you ask the following question at the end of the meeting:
IS THERE ANYONE YOU KNOW WHO MIGHT BE INTERESTED IN KNOWING ABOUT ME AS A JOB CANDIDATE? IF SO, FEEL FREE TO INTRODUCE US OR FORWARD MY RESUME TO THEM.
Then, pause and let them think about that. Listen carefully as they might mention people for you to contact directly, they might offer to put a word in about you and you should be ready to offer ways to make the connection easy and fast. Offer to send them your resume directly. Ask if they will do an email intro, a Linkedin intro or ask if there’s another way you can help make that ripple effect move quickly!
2. Make a list of all your friends and family who might possibly know someone in your field. Develop what I call a ‘Friends and Family Letter’ in which you ask for their help in your job search process. Let them know what kind of position you are looking for, suggest some names of organizations on your target list, include any geographical or other parameters and attach your resume and linkedin profile. Make it easy for them to help you! Make it easy for them to help the ripple effect go far and wide.
Yes, readers, please see your job search as creating a ripple effect in helping you to find the right people, leading to the right career opportunities.
Wishing you success in your job search,