We all know the job market stinks right now. I have a number of friends and associates who have been searching for employment for some time–some for over a year. Why is it so hard?? Well, for those of you who are in the $100k+ category, let’s face it–those jobs are hard to come by these days by just looking on Careerbuilder.com or other job boards. Did you know that only 4% of people actually find jobs using an online job board? Most people would assume that number was much, much higher than it is. So, what are you to do if you’re a job seeker in the $100k+? Well, for starters, I wouldn’t waste your time on Ladders.com I have had more people tell me it was a waste of money, as they didn’t get one single lead from posting their resume there. What you NEED to do is apply the most effective job hunting strategy: NETWORKING! The old saying, “It’s not just what you know–but who you know” is very true. It isn’t just calling up a dear, old uncle who is an executive and ask for a job… On the contrary, it is simply letting those within your personal and professional circle know what type of opportunity you’re looking for. However, if you don’t have a clue the type of opportunity you’re looking for…well no one can help you figure that out but you. Here are some strategies for networking:
1. Get on LinkedIn and build your list of connections
2. Use LinkedIn to identify people you would like to get introduced to
3. Get a member of your network (or a 2nd level connection) to introduce you. Call them up and say, “Hi, this is Jane Smith, I was referred to you by Fred Jones over at ABC Company… Yes, Fred is a great friend/associate/former coworker of mine… I wanted to contact you to see if I could get your perspective on what you see happening in the ( ) market/industry right now… I’ve been in ( ) industry for X # of years and, unfortunately, due to downsizing my position was eliminated. I’m conducting a job search right now, and the (industry he/she is in) is of interest to me, and I would appreciate your insight since you’re currently working in the ( ) industry right now. I’m certainly not asking your for a job, but rather to network with you to see if you have any suggestions that might help me to determine if I’m heading down the right path or not in my search. When would be a good time to get together for a coffee?”
4. Look at the membership listing for your local Chamber of Commerce. Identify a few businesses that you would like to target for career opportunities. (Remember, most high level positions are not advertised.)
5. Figure out who you know that works there and ask them to join you for a cup of coffee so you can pick their brain. If you don’t know anyone who works at a company(ies) you’re targeting, then ASK AROUND! See who does know someone there and apply strategy #3.
Stay tuned for more Job Hunting Strategies, I’ll be blogging about this subject over the next week!
To all you job hunters out there: Stay positive, stay away from negative people–they suck the energy out of you–and stop procrastinating…the laundry can wait. Get out of the house, even if it is to go to Starbuck’s for a coffee. Get out of the house to work on your job hunt. Too much cabin fever was never good for anyone!