Mon, Jan 18 2016
Our friend Sputnik, Australia’s favorite job hunt expert, is back with more great career advice.
An award winning creative and brand consultant, he’s also the creator of the Job Hunter’s Boot Camp and the author of 'The Swashbucklers Guide to Becoming an Astronaut'.
Make sure you're not lazy when you're on the hunt for work!
The world is a wonderful place with all sorts of amazing new technologies and ways of communicating at our disposal. Everything from Snapchat and Facebook to texting,Skype, FaceTime and probably a stack of other things. But here’s the thing – don’t forget the obvious ones when you’re job hunting.
Back in 1876 Alexander Graham Bell invented a thing called the telephone. Weirdly enough, they still exist today. Smaller (but getting bigger!) and smarter, yes, but still really, really useful. Not just for sending texts, taking pictures of your food, or playing Candy Crush, but for making actual phone calls. Where you actually talk. To other actual people. Like the people you are applying to for jobs.
I know that may come as a massive shock to many of you, and based on the distinct lack of people who use the phone to follow up on a job application, this may well be ‘breakthrough advice’. But good advice it is.
I recently posted a job opening in a small Facebook group I’m a part of and received 21 email applications. And you know how many phone calls I received? One. Out of 21. Do you know whose name is right at the top of my list now? Nathan’s. Yep, he’s the guy that bothered to call. Twice!
Now, to be fair, if his portfolio is rubbish, poor Nathan won’t be getting the job despite all his enthusiasm.
But enthusiasm and initiative count. You know why? Because anyone can say they’re enthusiastic and committed and have initiative. Talk is cheaper than a Happy Meal though. I want you to demonstrate it. And calling? Well, that’s demonstrating it. It’s walking the walk.
Oh, and for the record, this is another actual application I received for the job:
“Hey there, I saw your post on the Facebook group and I wanted to let you know I’m interested in it. Here’s a link to my resume <LINK> and in the email signature there’s a link to my website.”
Laziest. Application. Of all time.
Seriously, if this is your idea of a decent application, give up now.
I know I’m supposed to be all motivational and inspiring and helpful, but if you honestly think this is anywhere even close to good enough, just give up. Either that, or take a good long hard look in the mirror and ask yourself if you’re actually serious about getting a job.
Better still, ask someone else who has a clue. Because this is rubbish. It’s weak. It’s lazy. And the message it sends is, “I can’t really be bothered putting any effort in. Which is probably what I’ll be like if by some miracle I was to actually land the job”. Chance of this guy ever working with me? Zip. Zero. Zilch. 0.00%. Ever.
So next time you apply for a job, follow these simple steps:
I once worked with a big wig called Digby. (Actually, that’s not true, I’ve worked with him twice. Once in Australia, and again in SEAsia about 20 years later!) And we were chatting about pitching for new clients and he said, “The pitch isn’t over until they’ve awarded the business”. His philosophy was you keep doing things until you win or lose. Until a decision is made, you keep pushing, keep trying to prove you’re the best. You don’t stop when the pitch meeting is over.
The same is true of applying for a job.
Your application isn’t finished when you hit ‘send’. If you really want the job, it doesn’t finish until you get it – or they give it to someone else.
And in fact, I’d argue it doesn’t even finish then. What if that hire doesn’t work out for them? If I were you and I really wanted to work there, I’d stay in touch. Wait 2 or 3 months then ask them how their hire worked out and let them know you’re still around if any more opportunities come up.
With apologies to fat ladies everywhere, it ain’t over til the fat lady sings. Apply hard. Follow up enthusiastically. Don’t be ordinary. And don’t give up.
Author: Vitabites from Vitamin T, original article found here.