Hidden Job Market Secrets
Short Answer: Planning and Focus
If you want to stack the odds in your favor, get the offer and avoid being a runner-up candidate, you need a winning strategy. You cannot start working on job search-related tasks (e.g., writing resumes and cover letters, conducting corporate research, contacting your network, etc.) until you first prepare the correct campaign strategy. The strategy is a plan that describes how to get from where you are to where you want to be. The best strategic executive job search plans analyze possible challenges and describe how to eliminate obstacles that might block campaign progress.
Without a strategy, you are playing hit or miss in the job market. This probably explains why so many job searches fail to produce good results even when the candidate has an outstanding track record. Having the right strategy is a competitive advantage. By describing your most attractive (marketable) skills/strengths/talents and pairing these with employers most able to value your potential contribution to their organization, you can focus your job search efforts where you have the best chances of attracting an employer’s attention and securing a good job offer.
An effective go- to- market job search strategy specifies the candidate’s positioning, i.e., where they fit in the job market which is their job search focus. Fit means appealing to the needs and expectations of employers while at the same time satisfying the candidate’s personal requirements for industry sector, geography, compensation, growth potential, responsibilities and authority, company ownership type, etc. When the match is mutually satisfying, the placement is a success for both parties.
To recap, now you should have a better understanding of why it’s imperative that you only start updating your resume and/or broadcasting your availability to your network after you have figured out these keys to executive job search success.
- What content to put in your resume to attract the career opportunities you want
- Determine how to position yourself to stand out and appear trustworthy as the best candidate.
- *Whom you must connect with one-on-one and get on their radar screen as the prime contacts most likely to either hire you or refer you to a decision maker.
While it may take a little longer before you actually start sharing your resume and having exploratory conversations with hiring authorities, when you have the right strategy, all your job searching efforts will be more effective and you can spend your time more efficiently.
*NOTE: It’s not who you know, it’s who knows you, likes you and trusts you. You may not already be known to the “right” decision makers. That’s why you have to identify who those individuals are and how to appeal to them. Then, find a mutual contact to make an introduction or promote yourself to the right contacts with messaging to intrigue them that will start a dialogue and become a professional relationship.
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