You may be disappointed if you fail,
but you are doomed if you don’t try.
- Beverly Sills
There are many things a job search requires you to do that you probably don't want to do--contacting everyone in your network to let them know you're looking, contacting hiring managers directly, bringing a 30-60-90-day plan to your interview (if you've never done it), or following up after the interview with an email or phone call.
Most of the time, when someone hesitates to do any of these things, it's because of fear--fear of rejection or fear of failure.
It's true that you may not always get the outcome you want from any of these actions--but if you don't try, you absolutely won't.
Usually, when I convince someone I'm coaching to take a step out of their comfort zone like this, they are surprised and pleased by their results--you will be, too.
So, step out of your comfort zone and do the thing you're afraid to do:
If people like you they’ll listen to you,
but if they trust you
they’ll do business with you.
- Zig Ziglar
Zig's quote is a fantastic one to keep in mind for interviews. This concept is exactly why it's so important for you to choose and coach great references; and bring a brag book and 30-60-90-Day Plan to your interviews...all these things inspire trust in you as a candidate.
References provide reassurance that you are who you say you are, you can do what you say you can do, and you will be a great person to have on their team. You must have great references. Companies call your references more than you may think--and recruiters always call them.
A brag book serves as another type of reference. This is a historical look at things you have done in the past. It provides physical evidence that backs up your resume. Anyone can put together a brag book, and when you bring one to your interview, you will be surprised at how much it impresses the interviewer. Read this post for how to create and use a brag book in your interview.
A 30-60-90-Day Plan is a forward look at what life will look like with you on the job. It answers the 4 unasked questions of every hiring manager, and makes it clear that they don't have to guess if you'll do a great job. They can see from your plan that you absolutely will. (As a bonus, all your interview answers will be better after you've created a plan.) See how to create and use a 30-60-90-Day Plan in your interview.
Use all 3 pieces to inspire trust--and walk away from your interview with the job offer.
Videos give you something written answers don't: tone, inflection, and other subtleties that make a big difference in the quality of your answer. Not everyone learns the same, so videos may be just what you need to develop perfect interview answers.
99% of the job seekers (more than 270,000) who have experienced these say that they improve their interview answers immediately.
Give a man a fish
and you feed him for a day.
Teach a man to fish
and you feed him for a lifetime.
- Chinese Proverb
If you get a job lead, or a recruiter calls you about possible placement in a job, that's giving you a fish that feeds you for a day.
If you learn how to find those job leads and get those interviews on your own, that is teaching you how to fish and you will be fed for life. You will never be without the means to control your career and give yourself job security. You never worry about layoffs because you know how to quickly get another job. This is what we're about at Career Confidential.
These webinars are free and packed with information, advice, insights and shortcut tips that show you how to find jobs (even when there doesn't seem to be any), get interviews, and crush those interviews so you get a job offer every time.
Even if you are not currently in a job search, you should be aware of who you would use as a reference if necessary. References are not an afterthought--they can play a key role in whether or not you get a job offer.
It's human nature to want recommendations / comments / thoughts from others before you make a big move (I bet it hasn't been that long since you looked at TripAdvisor, Yelp, or Amazon reviews). Hiring you is a very big deal for companies. They don't want to make a mistake, and they call your references more than you may have known about before now.
So...how do you maintain a good pool of references to draw on when you need them?
Success consists of going from
failure to failure
without loss of enthusiasm.
- Winston Churchill
This is a perfect job search quote. Why? Because in every job search, there is rejection. It's built into the process.
What I want you to remember is this: For every 'no' you get, you are one step closer to a yes.
Think of your job search as picking through a bucket full of rocks, looking for a diamond. You will pick one up and it won’t be the one, so just toss it behind you and pick up the next one. Don’t think another thing about it. That rock didn’t reject you…it just wasn’t the one you needed. With every rock you pick up and toss behind you, you’re that much closer to the diamond you want.
Don't lose your enthusiasm while you're picking through the rocks.
Still, it's a very nice thing to speed up the process and get to your diamond faster. To do this, you must actively and aggressively contact hiring managers (the people who would be your boss or your boss's boss at companies you'd like to work for).
If you don't know how to speed up the process by contacting hiring managers, watch this video.
Interviewing for a sales job? Watch the video to see 4 ways you can be super-impressive, stand out in your interview, and get the job offer.
This video will show you how some of my candidates have taken this advice and run with it...these are real-world examples of how candidates used these techniques in their job interviews and got fantastic job offers as a result. You've got to see it...these were some truly great ideas, and I know they will help you.
Click the links below for more information on how to use these tips in your own interview:
Do you have a file folder somewhere with your past performance reviews in it? How about the award letter you received--or the note from your boss complimenting you on a job well done? During a job interview, have you ever thought, "I wish I could show an example of my work on my resume"?
These kinds of things should all be collected together in one spot--a brag book.
Brag books (aka kudos folders, success files, professional portfolios, etc.) are fairly well-known in sales rep circles, but they are such amazing tools for job interviews that if you don't have one, you are missing out. In a job interview, brag books provide such compelling evidence of your success, they can absolutely help you get the job offer.
Go out on a limb.
That’s where the fruit is.
- Jimmy Carter
One piece of advice I give all job seekers who are having trouble getting interviews is this:
Stop applying for the jobs you see online and go find and contact hiring managers at places you want to work.
Many people shy away from this advice. A lot of job postings say, 'Do not call' or something else that means, 'you have to jump through these hoops.' As a result, job seekers get afraid to try something else--even though this process gets your resume ignored more times than not.
But remember, out on a limb is where the fruit is. Job seekers who try contacting hiring managers get interviews. They even get interviews at places they had applied (online) to previously and were ignored.
If you aren't getting interviews, go out on a limb and contact hiring managers.
If you don't know how to contact hiring managers and get interviews, watch this video.
Have you updated your resume lately? If you're in a job search, this is a must, but it's a great idea even if you aren't actively looking. You never know when circumstances may require you to have an updated resume (which could be everything from an unexpected layoff to a dream job opportunity). A fresh resume means you are ready for anything.
Add Continuing Education
Have you taken any classes, seminars, workshops or trainings in the last year or two? Have you received any new certifications? Add these to your resume's education section. Employers like to see people who keep learning new things and stay current.
I wanted to share with you this email I received from an Engineer in Australia. It shows how much interview prep matters, especially when you're looking for a job in a different field, in another country!
I am a new migrant in Australia and my field of expertise is Electrical and Electronics Engineering. Since I landed here, I was seriously looking for a role in my field and came across a Service Engineer role with a leading medical company in Sydney. As part of my research for my interview, I watched almost all your videos posted in YouTube and guess what? Some of the questions asked to me were exactly as the ones in the videos. Because I managed to use your advice and examples you provided, I have been successful in securing the job.
Thank you so much for your time and effort you put into making those videos and providing brilliant examples. You have done all job seekers a great favor and I wish you all the very best for your future work. I have already started advertising your website and the video links on YouTube to help others.
Thank you again from the bottom of heart. Securing a job for me in Sydney was really a challenge but you made it possible for me.
Here are two sites with excellent videos to help you succeed in your job search and interviews:
The most common way people give up
their power is by thinking
they do not have any.
- Alice Walker
The people who get the most discouraged and depressed by a job search are the people who feel powerless in it--they are at the mercy of job postings and resume roulette.
You'll feel more positive and actually get better results if you always remember that you have power.
If you don't see enough job postings, remember that for every one you see, there's at least one more you don't (the hidden job market). Go find those jobs.
Many of the hiring managers you contact won't have anything available. That's OK. Some will. In fact, you have the power to contact so many hiring managers that you get multiple interviews. It happens all the time. The more interviews you get, the more power you have.
30-60-90-Day Plans absolutely help new graduates get a leg up in the job search race. It's tough to get a job with no experience, but a 90-day plan shows that you can do the job even without it.
Jorge got a job usually reserved for pharmacists who complete a 2-year fellowship. Congratulations, Jorge!
I just wanted to say thank you so much for your services (interview prep documents, videos, webinars, [Hidden] Jobs Finder, and 90-day plan). With your help I was able to secure a job in the pharmaceutical industry straight out of pharmacy school. Your 90-day plan outline helped me impress the company so much that I was given a promotion to a senior title, which is usually for pharmacists who complete a 2-year industry fellowship. Thank you for helping me get the job of my dreams.
There are no traffic jams
along the extra mile.
- Roger Staubach
If you want to stand out in the job search and interviews, the cold hard truth is that you have to do a little more than everyone else. Go the extra mile. You'll be one of the few.
How do you go the extra mile in a job search?
To get interviews, stop applying online to jobs and instead, directly contact hiring managers. Applying for jobs is the same road that all the other job seekers are on. It's crowded and you will get lost in the traffic.
If you haven't heard back from the company by the time they said you would, don't just sit and wait like everyone else. Follow up.
These are the "go the extra mile" things that make you stand out.
To find out exactly how to find the hiring managers you need and exactly what to say to them to make them want to interview you, get the Hidden Jobs Finder. This tool has all the information you need to get the interview you want.