Ways That Work: The Best Way to Find a Job

ways-that-work-image-2aAll over the world, women are graduating from colleges at historically high rates. Yet, in some countries women still make up a very small percentage of the workforce.

There are many reasons why this is the case, but we want to eliminate not being able to find a job as one of them.

The best way to find a job is NOT to look at job ads. The best jobs are hidden in plain sight.

To find a job, take these six steps:

1. Visualize your professional future:

  • What you would most like to do?
  • What importance do you want your career to have in your life?
  • Determine the first or the very next professional step you need to take to create the future you want.

2. Do your homework:

  • What companies and people are doing what you’d like to do?
  • What are their highest business priorities?
  • Get your resume and LinkedIn profile up to date.

3. Join the people who do what you want to do:

  • Figure out which organizations, associations, events, philanthropic endeavors they participate in. Join them!

4. Contact people with connections:

  • Based on your research and activities, identify the top 3-5 people that will be most likely to be able to help you – either because they may have an opening or because they are well connected in the your chosen field.
  • Send them a SHORT email. Don’t ask them for a job, don’t ask them for a lot of time, don’t send them your resume. Instead, ask them a smart insightful question about the industry, field, their company or profession. Convey that you’d like to learn more about a specific topic and ask them if they would be willing to spend no more than 30 minutes with you on the phone or in person to share their expertise with you.

5. Be insightful, helpful and positive:

  • When given the opportunity to connect with someone you’ve reached out to, be prepared to ask questions and share thoughts on the business priorities you previously identified.
  • Talk in positive, forward-looking terms about your skills and goals. No-one wants to spend time with someone who is negative and complains about the job market.
  • Bring your resume. Provide it if asked.

6. Follow up:

  • You’d be surprised to know how few people actually follow up. If you can send a handwritten note, do so. If not, send an email.
  • In your thank you note, refer specifically to how the person you talked to helped you. Tell them how you plan to use the information you shared.
  • If it seems appropriate, include your resume.

Repeat and refine steps 1-6 until someone tells you about a specific job to which you can directly apply or better yet, offers you one!