It does not matter if you have been in the labour market for months or you just freshly graduated from college.
The following tips give you the edge to fearlessly take the wheel and pursue your dreams.
Ready? Let’s run through some ‘action-based’ steps to land your choice job, the expert way!
1. Reach out to Prospective Employers. E.g, manager, director, HR director, friends of the GM who can link you with the GM, etc
Most job seekers are young, and as a result, a lot of them are either afraid to dare or are simply scared of rejection.
Well, as I will always say, this is the era of fearless job hunting. There are two things: it is either you put yourself out there, or you get frizzled out of the competition.
And if you ask me, I believe this is the best time to get all the rejections and “No, Thanks, No” you may get in life. (cheeky grin😁) It is when you are young that you can afford to make mistakes and learn.
Interestingly, a good number of job seekers who have followed this advice have reported positive feedback, especially when they approached the recruiters constructively. In cases where they didn’t get a “Yes”, they were rather encouraged, and some recruiters went further to refer them to other opportunities.
I will not deny that some reported that they were totally ignored but then, what do you stand to lose from being ignored by a recruiter?
Your guess is as good as mine: nothing!
Remember, you must have already known which specific role or area you want to work in, so you search out recruiters and companies in that area and strategically shoot your shots!
A strategy is key in doing this.
Here’s a framework on how to reach out smartly:
1. WHO ARE YOU? e.g., say
Hi Joddy, My name is XXXX, I’m a careers consultant & ex-university lecturer [insert whatever career title you have!].
2. WHY YOU CHOOSE THE PERSON? e.g.,
─ I chose to communicate (talk or email) with you because it seems you manage the sales unit for XXXX Company…
─ because my friend said you’re the best recruiter in the city
─ because I got a referral to you from Mrs….
3. WHAT DO YOU WANT?
─ I was hoping you could help me with…
─ I’m looking to get connected with…
─ I wanted to get your thoughts about…
─ The reason I’m reaching out is…
─ Do you know Mr….
─ I need your referral to someone…
─ I need to know if you know anybody at this company X, or in this market/industry XX or what you suggest regarding XXX
4. YOU DID YOUR HOMEWORK
─ when I was searching ….
─ when I was evaluating your company, I noticed you likely run this department…
─ I discovered from the press release that…
─ I was reviewing your …and I saw you were quoted in the NYSE
5. WHAT YOU OFFER
─ Networking (your network)
─ Referral bonus
─ Your services
6. YOU’RE GRATEFUL
─ Thank you for reading it.
─ I appreciate any help you can give me
7. WHAT’S THE NEXT STEP? – call to action (CTA) – ask YES/NO question to make it easy for them
─ Do you know anyone at…
─ can you connect me with ….
─ Do you know anyone in this company…
─ I need your thoughts about…
[I can give you real-life examples of letters upon request]
Meanwhile, anyone can send any messages, however, for me, the real deal is knowing how to handle ‘Nos as in No-thanks-No‘ when your email comes back with one.
That’s where the boys are separated from the men and in my job search career guidance programme, I’ve come up with 11 solid responses to various objections.
2. Be Guided.
Yes! Follow that career coach that knows the nitty-gritty of job hunting. What happens when you walk on the shoulders of giants? Go figure!
Their wealth of experience on job matters gives you an edge cos you end up knowing what the recruiters know. The answers they seek and the skills they need.
You get access to some first-hand info by career experts by letting them guide you in your job search journey which will likely land you your choice job faster than when you do it alone.
3. Get a Proper Email Address.
Lol! I’ve been planning to make a full-fledged post on the use of appropriate email while job hunting, but since it has come up here, let me chip this in.
Please leave funny and trendy names for your Instagram handles. Don’t bring them to CVs and applications.
Those unintelligible emails may look and sound attractive to you and your peers, but no recruiter takes you serious with an email like email@example.com
Use a simple email address that has at least your first name or surname.
4. Know what is required for your chosen role and start practising.
For instance, if you are in Nigeria and are interested in entry-level roles, you have to get used to GMAT, SHL and other Dragnet and Workforce-styled questions!
Find out about the job tests involved and be good at them. There are sample questions and answers all the internet. Begin the win early!
5. Be Innovative in your area of interest.
Always try to do new things as you job hunt. With these, you won’t have to lie or be short for words when asked questions in the field.
I know you must have often heard that “looking for a job is also a job”. Do not make it all about idly submitting tons of applications.
Carry out tasks while searching like some freelancing, learn relevant courses, start a business, grow a passion, the list goes on.
Never stop learning!
6. Follow the Rules.
One of the best ways to be shortlisted is to follow all requirements as specified. Follow what they have asked you thoroughly.
For Example; Kindly use your surname with the position as subject. That’s a very simple instruction. But a lot of people won’t follow it. Make sure you do.
The implication of not following instructions is that with the advent of AI, recruiters now deploy software that use keywords to discard CVs and applications before it even gets to their inbox. It removes all OND if they have asked for BSc. It removes all the ones that did not follow the email subject accordingly. All they need to do is enter the command on the software.
7. Have a Healthy Self-Esteem.
Whether you are new or have been in the job hunt exercise for long, never let past experiences of rejection or fear tamper with your self-confidence.
A lot of job seekers after a few rejections begin to lose hope on themselves. After many failed attempts, do not conclude that you are a douche bag, dust yourself and brush up your skills. That’s how successful people act.
When the going gets tough, the tough keep going. Never allow fear or anxiety kick in because they will ruin your chances of ever landing a job.
Always keep in mind, nobody employs a scared person.
Remember I said “healthy”, so conversely, you should also not be over-confident. Thus making you claim to be who you are not, or saying you can do what you truly can not do.
Balance is key!.
Finally, Network…Network… Network!
Look up the Company of your interest and mingle with people already in that practice or similar area. This can not be overemphasised.
It is a good thing that platforms like #LinkedIn makes that even easier. Put on your social networking cap and connect with employees of companies of your interest, register your interest in a genuine and respectful manner.
Don’t be a nuisance. This is one of the quickest ways to get into the “hidden job market.” A silent vacancy can be available, and you will be informed.
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