To effectively seek work, think like a marketer and market yourself. Identify your unique selling proposition, carefully target your potential new employers, craft persuasive messages, and determine ways to get the attention and consideration you deserve. Finding a new job requires a Zen that’s comprised of patience, routine, sustained confidence, steady action, and considered risk-taking. But be realistic. Manage your nerves and marshal your resources.
Here are the eight must-do steps to keep you sane and on track:.
Create a Routine. Job-hunting isn’t a full-time job. Set up a daily routine. Check e-mail, surf job boards, then walk the dog, exercise, meet friends for lunch, and watch Netflix. Structure your day so that you do what you need to and reduce the likelihood that you’ll obsess about your circumstances.
Don’t Pitch Every Job. You are anxious with one eye on bills and the other on your savings account. But restrain yourself. Many of the jobs posted aren’t real. Many aren’t right for you. Pick your shots. And when you do, take the time to craft a short, punchy cover letter that synchs up your experience to the job requirements.
Stutter Step Your Submission. The vast majority of online applications come in during the first 24 hours after a job is posted. Huge numbers of people apply automatically to jobs they aren’t remotely qualified for. Many employers can’t handle the numbers, so they dump the first response wave because nobody is willing to wade through 500 resumes. So pick your shot, wait a day, and then apply. There is a reasonable chance that your patience will earn you more consideration.
Set Alerts. Let jobs to find you. Do a search using the keywords that fit your ideal position. Save the search as an alert. You can do this in 45 seconds on Craigslist or at www.indeed.com, www.simplyhired.com, www.glassdoor.com, or others. Each day the jobs most interesting to you will end up in your Inbox.
Surf Social Networks. Let your social friends know you are looking and sign up for professional groups or forums on LinkedIn, where many jobs are posted and many recruiters are lurking. Also check trade association and trade publication sites. Many have job listings or report on openings, new positions, and employers’ plans.
Don’t Be Bashful. You can’t win if you don’t play. Tell people you are looking and what you are looking for. Most people assume that friends and family know their situation and will do the math for them. This is usually NOT true. And while it might make you blush, you never know who knows whom. Tell your maiden aunt, your cousin in Boise, and your downstairs neighbor what you’re looking for and what you do because their aunt, neighbor, cousin, high school BFF, or sister-in-law just might be hiring.
Publish. In an interactive world employers will search the web for prospective employees. So while you’ve got the time, share your expertise by publishing a blog or posting thoughts, comments, opinions, or advice on blogs, portals, professional communities, media sites, or job boards. You never know if your clever response to a news story or your nuts-and-bolts advice to an industry peer will send an employer in your direction. Many more people read this stuff than write posts, so consider it a form of self-marketing.
Engage Recruiters. Most recruiters are actively trying to find the needle in the haystack; the perfect candidate that meets all the requirements and nice-to-haves that employers fantasize about. If you fit the profile, these guys are your new best friend. If you don’t, don’t expect a return call. Every recruiter keeps some kind of database and almost everyone remembers individuals with interesting stories, unique expertise, or even odd-sounding names. Many allow you to upload your resume to their sites, others are happy to collect resumes by e-mail, and many post openings on their own sites and larger job boards. And you never know; tomorrow they can get assignment where you fit the bill.
Danny Flamberg, EVP Managing Director of Digital Strategy and CRM at Publicis based in New York, has been building brands and building businesses for more than 30 years.Prior to joining Publicis, he led a successful global consulting group called Booster Rocket, as Managing Partner. Before becoming a consultant, he was Vice President of Global Marketing at SAP, SVP and Managing Director at Digitas in New York and Europe and President of Relationship Marketing at Amiratti Puris Lintas and Lowe Worldwide.
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