This blog is Part 3 of a three-part series of stories with career advice by Scott Engler, the owner and head coach of “B.Y.O.B. Coaching & Consulting”. In Part 3, Scott explains running a business where “You” are the job search experts.
Three Steps for “You” to Become The Job Search Expert
1. Ask Yourself a Few Basic Questions
What are your own personal assets?
What are your liabilities?
Examples of Asset and Liability
Asset: Being part of a very large local network of people who are supportive of one another. Maybe you have a huge, closely-knit family, including spouses, siblings spouses, etc with lots of successful professionals.
Write that down as an asset. You may not get a job right away through a family member, but the process of writing down the assets you do have will build confidence and momentum as you move forward.
Liability: If you are looking to transition industries, for example, it might be more of a liability. You have to consider that you are likely to have a smaller network within the industry combined with less industry knowledge, experience, and confidence.
Also factor in the attributes and talents that serve as assets while honestly assessing some potential liabilities. Consider again the former job seeker example and how he could use his assets to help him not only be more effective in his job search, but to feel good and move forward with more ease.
The main point here is to get you thinking about your approach to the job search differently.
2. Focus on The Concept of “Selling Yourself”
Recently, I heard an expert in the field share that your resume is “similar to a sales pamphlet” and the product you are selling is “yourself”.
With that in mind, your next step would be to start looking at the documents and information you put together describing your features, advantages, and benefits.
If you are not experienced with how to distinguish those, just focus on the concept of selling yourself. Even without a background in sales, all of us have experience purchasing products and reading sales materials. And this doesn't have to apply to just the resume, use it on your LinkedIn profile, networking interactions, and interviews.
The reality is, whether we like the idea of selling or not, we are selling ourselves to a prospective company. You are embarking on a mission to earn money and help a company be profitable in some way.
It's been my experience that the sooner you can accept the reality of this, the more effective you will be during your interactions while networking, interviewing with employers, etc..
3. Make Smart Investments, Delegate and Developing “You” The Job Search Expert
The third step would be to consider what areas you may need to invest in, delegate, and develop as you build your own "business" whilst looking for work. Some examples:
Do you need to hire a professional resume or LinkedIn profile writer?
The $800 to $1,300 investment may seem like a lot of money to spend on a resume, but when you consider the potential return of investment, it makes sense. See this ROI formula:
Full-time Job & Time Saved
______________________________________________ = ROI
$1300 for resume
While I am obviously biased, I truly believe this is such a great investment compared. Comparing this with other investments, there is a greater likelihood that the job you get will make you a return on your investment shortly and continue to grow as you grow in your new role with pay raises and bonuses.
Delegating Your Job Search Responsibilities
Recently, I spoke with another job seeker looking for a position as a patent attorney. He informed me that he had spent around $400 on joining a local organization of attorneys.
His response, "I wasn't thrilled about spending that money, as I've been out of work for awhile, but that amount of money would be well worth it if being a part of this organization is the tool that helps me land my next job."
Delegating could look a number of different ways for you and your job search business.
Staffing Agencies or Executive Search Firms
Perhaps the industry or position you are looking for happens to be one that is more easily placed through staffing agencies or executive search firms.
This could be a great way to outsource and delegate your job search by utilizing people who also profit and benefit from you getting a job, or doing the job searching and networking for you.
Just think, you now have someone else on your team committed to spending a certain amount of hours every week to help you get what you want!
Developing “You” The Job Search Expert
Developing the job search expert known as “You” can simply involve sharpening or learning new skills associated with the position you seek in your next career move.
I personally believe the excessive nature of needing specific certifications upfront is somewhat of an illusion in many contexts. I also believe that many times there are small steps we can take to develop ourselves that might not even require much time, money, and effort on our part.
If you notice a lot of the positions you are interested in require you to be proficient in Microsoft Excel and Office, and you know you're a bit rusty or inexperienced, take a few hours to refresh your memory.
Take online tutorials on using these programs and get used to all the new software updates. You will be more prepared once you start the job. You will also feel much more confident before you are interviewed!
By applying these 3 steps and adapting a "business" mindset approach to your job search, I believe you can embody a sense of creativity and authenticity into your search that will align you with the types of organizations for which you are a good fit. And you achieved this by selling yourself in a way that is authentic and effective.
“You” became “The Job Search Expert”!