Déjà vu all over again

To quote the inimitable Yogi Berra, every day of job search can sometimes be considered as “Déjà vu all over again” as we struggle to be enthusiastic about finding the next opportunity. Employment, by the way is often considered the same but a slightly different version of the hamster on the treadmill. Continue reading

I know what I want, how do I get there?

What a refreshing change of pace the other day. A new client appeared at the office and sat down with a big smile and a strong handshake. My immediate thought was that I had confused the appointment and I was meant to be interviewing a new employee not someone who had just lost their job but yes they had just been laid off and they were focused on the future. Continue reading

Does Your Resume Make You Look FAT?

There’s the common joke – Q:”do these pants make me look fat?” A: “no your fat makes you look fat”.  The punchline is funny because it is obvious to everyone else that it is fat that makes people look fat and not the pants.  But job-seekers use the same (wrong) logic every day.

For job-seekers it is “will this resume find me a job?” with the punchline “No, a resume will not find

No Pain - No Gain

No Pain - No Gain

you a job, no matter how good it is, you have to go out and find one yourself”.  Every job-seeker nods their head and admits that this is obvious.  Then the proceed to run a passive/reactive job-search whose main focus is ‘getting a great resume together’.  The resume becomes their core tool with everything else following.  If you have a resume, you need a great resume.  If you have a great resume, you need to post it on all the job-boards.  If you have a great resume you’d be crazy NOT to send it to every job listing that looked somewhat relevant.

Isn’t that a good strategy?  You have a great resume and you can search job-boards all day and ‘use’ that great resume to try to get the job.

No, it is not but that doesn’t stop most job-seekers from doing exactly that – and they are shooting themselves in the foot at the same time.  Why?  What could be wrong with this approach?  It’s the most common strategy with job-seekers.  Recent data shows that 5%-10% of job-seekers find a job by applying to an opening posted online and if you are white-collar/professional the numbers are more like 3%-5%.  Put another way, most job seekers are spending most of their time following loosing strategies. It’s like trying to mow your lawn with a butter-knife, you can get your lawn mowed, but it is going to take much much longer than if you used a lawn-mower.  So if you want a very long and frustrating job-search where you have little control over the outcome, then job boards are great.  If you want to get a job then you need to do exactly that, go out and get it.  Take control, look at real data as far as what works (and what doesn’t) and use a strategy that has a good chance of success.  Or you can blame the pants (resume).