Posted by Kevin Donlin,
Good economy? Bad economy? Worst economy in 400 years?
Thereâ€™s always a steady stream of Guerrilla Job Search success stories coming in. Itâ€™s almost monotonous.
In fact, here at Guerrilla World Headquarters, we love reading stories like this one, featuring excerpts from a blog posting by our latest happily employed Guerrilla â€”Â Greg Quirk, from Ottawa, Ontario:
It is official. I have received an employment contract and was happy to sign it! â€¦ as this might end up being lengthy, I might break it up into multiple posts. Today I am going to focus on what worked for me.
What worked for my job search
There are a number of things that I found valuable during my job search. Â While some of them did not result in a job offer, or in some cases even for actually applying for positions, they kept me motivated throughout the process.
1) Have a plan in place. This was not the first time that I have had to look for a job, but this time I approached it in a different manner â€“ I had a plan. Â Previously I had jumped onto the Internet, gone to job board sites, and sent my resume in for positions that were listed. Â And that was my day. Â It quickly became frustrating because I entered the â€œblack holeâ€ of applying and not finding anything new to apply for. Â This time around I had a plan in place of activities to perform beyond going to job boards and it made me feel like I was accomplishing something instead of doing the same thing over and over every day. If you do not know how to go about making a job search plan read through my blog posts from when I started the Guerrilla Executive Home Study Course, pick up a copy of the program yourself â€¦
2) Do multiple things. Â Along the same lines as having a plan, I found that it was useful to have multiple things on the go. Â I created a blog that I was updating almost every day. Â I was trying to network (mostly though LinkedIn). Â I was doing research on companies that I wanted to work for. Â I was making calls and sending out follow ups. Â Each day I a list of different things to that were moving me towards my goal instead of doing the same thing each day. Â By having multiple things going on I also found that my days were busier, more productive, and I had a sense of accomplishment.
3) Find companies. Â One challenge that I constantly faced was finding companies to research and apply to. Â If you get a book on job searching they will often gloss over this aspect and focus on resumes, cover letters, and other steps to take when applying for a position. Â But all of that advice is pointless unless you actually have somewhere to apply to. Â One thing that I uncovered was to look for companies that won awards, and then follow the awards to find other companies to investigate. Â Typically there are multiple winners for an award, or at least multiple nominees, so that helps to identify a number of companies. Â And often if a company won an award they have won others as well, expanding on the number of awards that you can follow to find many companies.
4) Guerrilla Resume. Â This is one that I can not overstate. Â I have received many compliments on my Guerrilla Resume. Â Granted, I believe that the content is good, but it is the formatting that caught the hiring managerâ€™s attention and made them take the time to look at it. Â It is different than most of the resumes that are submitted and in a pile of applications it is great to stand out to get noticed.
5) Follow up. Â Just sending your resume to a company and hoping they will get in touch with you is not a good strategy in my mind. Â This is putting your career in someone elseâ€™s hands and leads to a sense of hopelessness and waiting. Â There is nothing worse than sitting around waiting for the phone to ring. Â If you follow up with a company and get a â€œnoâ€ answer that is good. Â Wait, getting a no is good? Â By getting a no answer you can move on to your next opportunity and are not waiting for feedback. Â This happen to me. Â I had multiple meetings with a company and I was sure that they were going to make me an offer. Â I waited patiently for them to contact me and was not focusing on filling my pipeline as much as I should have. Â When they did call me, it was with the unfortunate news that they were not in a position to offer me a job. Â I had let time go by without doing as much searching as I could have because I did not receive feedback. Â You can also use a no answer to ask a valuable question â€“ Do they know of someone else who is looking? Â You never know, they might be able to point you somewhere that you had not been looking.
6) Put yourself out there. This one might be my own personal style, but I throw myself wholeheartedly into everything that I do. Â This can, and has, resulted in me being completely crushed when things do not work out, but by engaging completely I can sleep at night knowing that I tried my hardest, even if it did not work out.
7) Do the work. When you do get a meeting with a company be prepared. Â Walk into the meeting with knowledge about the company and their problems, and have thoughts about how to solve those issues. Â You can find out about a companyâ€™s problems by talking to former employees. Â This means a lot of work, and if you do not get the job you may feel that it was all for nothing. Â But if you have not done the preparation you are not going to be putting your best foot forward and showing them why they need to hire you.
Try something different. Â I have talked about the coffee cup caper, and I believe that it is a great way to get meetings. Â This is especially true if you are applying to a company that does not have a position posted because if you just send in your resume I do not think that it will get noticed until they have a need to fill. Â By sending a coffee cup, you are able to get their attention, and since you have done the work, you have identified their pain points and can talk about them in your cover letter. Â This tactic had a solid hit rate for me and even if I did not secure a meeting, often I would at least receive a call or e-mail letting me know. Â This way I could cross companies off my list and was not waiting to hear back from them.
9) Donâ€™t give up. Â It can be an easy thing to do when things do not go your way, and I felt depressed myself a number of times. Â But you are not going to find a job unless you take action. Â Even when things look bleak, there are other opportunities around the corner. Â Find something that works for you and continue to do it until you get an offer.
Way to go, Greg!