If you are making a career pivot or trying to land a new job and are not getting the results you want, you may want to review your process and measure the effectiveness of your activities. Too many people lock themselves into a routine or process of what they believe is the right path to accomplish a goal and get frustrated when the outcome they desire doesn’t happen.
For instance, if you are spending day after day looking for a job and applying for multiple positions online and not getting responses then perhaps this process is not working. Even if this is the method you used previously to land a job, it may not work now.
Why is your process not working?
There could be many reasons it is not working. Are you sending the same resume and cover letter for every opening? If so, it is time to make a change by tailoring your resume and letter for each position based on the job description.
Marion, who has been looking for a marketing job for the last two months came into my office two weeks ago very down and depressed because no one had responded to any of the over fifty resumes she had sent in response to job postings. I asked a number of questions including whether she was qualified for the positions and did she tailor her resume and letter to show that her skills and experience were a good match for the requirements. I also inquired what else was she doing besides applying online.
Reviewing her process I found that she was very well qualified for more than half of the positions and was spending at least 1-2 hours tailoring her resume for each position. After applying for each job, what did she do? Wait, wait and wait.
Be proactive and step up your game
The waiting game will only get you so far and then you just have to be more proactive and step it up a notch by doing something different. Marion and I listed all the companies where she had applied and worked out a plan for her to find contacts within those companies (LinkedIn is great for this) who might be able to help her. As a sideline you could create a list of target companies that interest you and even if there is no opening now set the stage for any future prospects by making contacts now.
The first thing Marion did after our meeting was to send an e-mail to everyone she knew asking if anyone had information about these companies and if they knew a current or former employee. I suggested that she create a master e-mail and then tailor it for each person. Two people responded. One person made a recommendation to a former colleague in one company and the other referred her to someone they knew within two companies to which she applied.
Marion even enjoyed reconnecting with friends and colleagues she had not spoken to in years. Initially, it felt weird, but so many were happy to hear from her. What started as a time consuming extremely frustrating process ended with multiple interviews and two offers. Marion landed and is soaring in her new role.