Since the economic downtown of 2008, I have spent an increasing amount of time talking to people about how to find their next promotion/job.
Since you’ve been successful in the past, you may not have had to ever look for a job. Somehow, your next opportunity found you!
However, you need to be ready for this “new” world. Making the most of your career opportunities is essential in today’s competitive environment. Branding yourself and creating an active network of professionals will require effort. But you will feel even more successful when you are living up to your potential!
Here are some resources for making sure you are ready make the most of your strengths:
Do you have a “Killer Resume?” Does it show off your strengths without going beyond facts? One book I often recommend for discovering your strengths is Strength Finders. This book includes an online assessment to help you define your strengths.
Does your resume look modern? Highlight your measurable accomplishments? Are you using an email address that is appropriate? Yes, we recently received an email from an executive who was using an email name “studmuffin”!!! Using emails from your cable company or aol may suggest that you aren’t up to date with the current work environment.
Next step, have you reviewed your network to see where there might be gaps? LinkedIn has a nice visual tool to help you see your contacts within their network. Here’s my network map. But remember, this isn’t your entire network. Don’t forget about associations, religious groups, friends and family that may not be on LinkedIn.
Here is where many people lose steam. Have you shared your goals with your network? Have you gone on an informational interview to learn from other executives? Did you remember to get referral names from each person you met AND FOLLOW UP WITH THEM? Keeping in touch with your network on a planned and purposeful basis is necessary. Offering them a copy of an article they might find interesting or a piece of information you think they might like is even more valuable. Providing value will result in you receiving more value.
When you find a position that you would like to apply for, make sure you tell them why you are perfect for the job. Don’t expect anyone to “figure it out” from your past experience. You don’t want to be left wondering why you didn’t get hired.
Next time…..how to interview like a pro:-)