Posted by: careerworks | March 16, 2011

New Job Search Paradigm – Breaking the Rules

Though the world has changed, the “rules” of  job searching have remained the same for many years. I’m sure you’ve heard many of them: keep your resume to one page, don’t ever call to check once you’ve applied for a job, etc. While following these rules may work for some people, many of today’s successful job seekers have learned to break the rules to their advantage. If playing by the rules isn’t your thing, here are a few you should break:

  1. Apply for as many jobs as possible. Instead of blanketing the earth with copies of your resume, the best approach is to have a clear strategy that targets a few positions that you know you are qualified for. Make sure you’ve customized your resume for each position and contact hiring managers at the companies you’ve selected directly. This approach will cover published positions and  non-published opportunities as well as .
  2. Don’t call us, we’ll call you. Where did this come from? It’s easy to understand that HR people might not like to answer calls where the job-seeker is asking if their application materials had been received, but GEEEZZ. What if sales people never followed up? Nothing would ever be sold, commerce would come to a complete stop and consumer needs would linger on forever. Get over this myth, pick up the phone and give them a call.
  3. Once ‘you’re no longer a candidate’ for a job, move on. Really, why? Companies make mistakes all the time. A client, Phil, received an email notification that he was eliminate as a candidate for a job for which he had interviewed. When he called to get feedback from the HR department, a flustered person on the other end of the phone told him that he had been sent the ‘move-on’ email by mistake and he was in fact, still one of their top three candidates. What if Phil hadn’t help them find their mistake?
  4. Contact a few recruiters first. Recruiters do great work in helping you find a job, however, recruiters work for their client company and not you the job-seeker. Leaving your search in the capable hands of a recruiter is not a good solution as there is a high probability that the recruiter you’re talking to may not see a job order for you. The better approach is to define your strategy, including industries, functions, companies and roles, develop your elevator pitch, and to network strategically, including sending your resume to some recruiters who should be part of your network.
  5. Document your entire life in your resume. Contrary to popular belief, it’s unnecessary to list on your resume everything you’ve done since you were 18 years old, especially graduating from high school. Most job seekers are really good at packing their resume with useless information. The most important information your resume MUST contain are your quantified accomplishments. Those that are the most recent and relevant to the job you are applying for will be the most important. As for limiting your resume to 1 page, if your story can be told effectively on 1 page than do so, but if you need 2 pages then use two.






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