The traditional job seeker spends most of their time on job boards…and trying to figure out the “right” KEYWORDS. It starts by taking the path of least resistance… applying for those jobs that you feel ideally suited for. After all, this approach comes with a low risk of direct rejection. In fact, it also comes with a low response ratio… The Internet’s ‘black hole.’ Instead of being told “no,” you’re told nothing.
Or you receive the automated “thanks but no thanks” emails that come seconds after you submit your application… not once touched by a human hand!
NEXT Week’s Session, Thursday, June 27th… A LinkedIn Primer: an overview of your push/pull choice and your three tasks within fully utilizing this GPS to networking.
That’s why it’s important to look for your next employment opportunity outside job boards… Don’t limit yourself to posted jobs, or even un-posted jobs in the ‘hidden job market.’ Learn to embrace the OTHER job market, the one where employers are seeking your ‘top talent.’.
Many real opportunities exist outside job boards … in abundance. So if you’re willing to do the work that almost no one else wants to do to unearth your ‘next right employment opportunity,’ here are the TOP TEN tactics to create connections within the OTHER job market:
- USE THE JOB BOARDS, but before you apply for a specific job…network your way to the opportunity presented you!
Often, this approach will identify individuals who request your resume, either for forwarding, or, best yet, for their endorsement. A requested resume is read more frequently…your reward for embracing the OTHER job market.
- Take the word ‘JOB’ out of your vocabulary until scheduling actual interviews.
An appropriate replacement would be to consider the acronym ‘A.I.R.’ When networking your way to the interview process, seek Advice, Information and referral activity to interact with connections regarding the ‘next right opportunity’ you desire.
- Never prematurely create the chance for rejection that you want to avoid
It’s absolutely OK to be perceived as a qualified, motivated and available professional! JOB seekers command a yes-no-maybe choice.
- Reach out to the majority of your LinkedIn contacts.
Just remember to keep it professional yet personal. See if you can relate to something they’ve written or the job they do to increase your chances of building a solid relationship. You want to be professional in how you respond, but personal so it doesn’t feel so much of an inconvenience or sales pitch to them.
- Check with your college alumni network.
Everyone knows someone. Often, this approach can lead to connections that bring forth new opportunities that lead to your next job. You already have something in common (your alma mater), so it can be easier to connect.
- Search for corporate alumni where you used to work and connect with those new individuals.
Again, since you have something in common (previous place of employment), this can work to your benefit. Make this a regular task of your job searching and you’ll be amazed at the new connections you can achieve.
- Explore business news stories.
Where there’s smoke, there’s fire. If a company launches a new business, there’s often hiring happening to support it. If a company downsizes, believe it or not, that creates opportunities. Position yourself as a solution and reach out.
- Research industry conferences and conventions.
Whether you attend or not, conferences, trade shows, and conventions are nuggets of opportunities to capitalize on. Get familiar with the major ones in your industry and do your due diligence to make connections…a nice little sideline are the hospitality suites many Companies sponsor.
- Look up educational and career/professional development events.
Relish in your own personal development. People who grow and stick together help each other. Do your research to find these but also reach out to others in your industry to get ideas. Simply ask them which events they plan on attending in the near future.
- Find professional association members.
Members normally take care of each other. So join these groups, but do more than just joining them; get active. That’s the best way to get noticed and build solid connections.
There are many other ways to secure the next right opportunity for employment and stay off job boards, but these are the most important. And all will require you to get your resume updated and in order.
In every marketplace, there are buyers and sellers. In the traditional job market, the one that our Department of Labor measures for us, job seekers are the sellers and their potential employers are the buyers. The commodity is productive work and the competition is fierce.
Remember, in the OTHER Job Market, buyers and sellers hold equal responsibility for the recruitment process. Each plays an important role in the process. When employers have a need for someone to fulfill a specific role, often the most desired candidates are employed individuals with the credentials they seek.
Thus the employer can identify key candidates, sell their Company to new employees in the marketplace… in order to attract the best of the lot. Once identified, they simply select the ‘top talent’ and buy their services.