If you are spending 100% of your time looking for a position online, you may be expending a lot of effort with little result. Since not all jobs are advertised, there is a great benefit in going beyond what is easy and obvious. Yes, you may have to step out of your comfort zone, but keep in mind that not all opportunities are advertised . . . and that the crowd remains focused on what is easy and obvious.
Research companies that excite you. Ask everyone you know if they have a contact inside the company or a contact that does business there. You don’t want to pressure an acquaintance by asking for help in finding a job, but most people are glad to provide an introduction to a colleague or hiring manager from whom you can obtain information on various topics. Ideally, you’ll want to speak with employees, customers, vendors and competitors. You can ask about specific challenges the company faces in your area of expertise; how the individual you are interviewing secured his or her position; what insights do customers, vendors and competitors have into the company; and which departments/business areas expect the most growth over the next 6-12 months. Once you know what the challenges and opportunities are, you can develop and present the case for hiring you to solve the problem. This strategy keeps you in control and often opens the door to an opportunity that is never advertised to outsiders.
LinkedIn and your local public library are valuable sources of information that can help you accomplish this strategy!
Ellie Vargo, MRW, CCMC