What is your opinion of somebody who has just been appointed to a new job because they were in the right place at the right time? Do you think it’s not fair that such luck should go their way? Have you considered that it might not be luck? What if this ‘chance’ meeting was, in fact, the product of weeks of careful research into where the right place might be, what the right time would be and who the right person was to meet at that point, whether they be a recruiter or an internal HR manager?
This is the Unadvertised Job Market; where people find the job they deserve through hard work, careful planning, professional preparation and determined execution of a personal project.
Where do you start?
The process is based around research to acquire all the information you need, then application of that information to connect with the right people to discuss potential success through working together.
The key is that people work for people; unless you connect personally, you will never succeed professionally.
Your research starts with an in depth investigation into your own career, and the functional CV which results will highlight the essential elements of what you offer the market.
We define your offering as the complete set of career assets you bring to the job interview – that is your Career Bank account.
Your offering is what you bring to the market, Your needs are what the market brings to you. Your needs comprise:
Think about your skills – which do you do best? Which do you do least well? Can you put them in order of competence? Can you also put them in order or preference? Which do you enjoy the most?
Can you then consider business sectors, business types or specific companies which would prioritise the disciplines the same way you have? This is another indicator of who you would work well with – the market demand for your career assets.
This all contributes to building a clear and well researched objective for your job search.
You are transforming your approach to a new job, and preparing for the Unadvertised Market – this market will not take an interest in anyone without a well researched personal objective.
You might start a campaign to access the Unadvertised Market by writing to as many companies and recruiters as you can think of, advising them of your availability, and maybe attaching a copy of your CV. How do you think these letters are received? How many of such letters do you think companies receive? Who would be processing them? Would this be the key decision maker you are trying to address, or an HR assistant, PA or Administrator? Would your letter get special attention, or, in the interests of fairness, get filed with all the others?
How do you stand out from the job seeking crowd? How do you get noticed? How do you get introduced to the right people? Where do you find these people? What are you going to ask when you meet them?
The answer lies in your personal research, your research of Companies, your research of the people who are the key decision makers, and your understanding of people.
These days we have considerable information available in what companies say about themselves on their websites, and online searching can draw out some personal information about key people. But don’t forget there is also a wealth of information in the archives of your local press, and in the reference section of your local library.
Then there is the question of who you already know. Have you considered who they might know, and who you may therefore be introduced to? The same questions then arise – how do I approach them? What am I going to ask? How do I make sure my research does not end at this person; what connections do they have?
How well directed are your efforts? This will depend on the quality of your research, the clarity of your planning and preparation, and the experience of those who are helping you.
Now stop, and ask yourself – what do I do if somebody asks me if I’d like to meet them and discuss opportunities further?