CareerPro, Inc. and The Triangle Executive Careers Group invited our President, Gary Greene, to talk about helpful techniques and strategies for job seekers to find not just a job, but also a life-fulfilling career in a presentation entitled “Finding Your Career of Choice.” CareerPro Inc. was founded by John O’Connor and offers support and career coaching to job seekers. John O’Connor also founded The Triangle Executive Careers Group, which provides members with information, support, and tools to take charge of their careers, find jobs they love, and reach their work life mission. How do you find your life-fulfilling career of choice? Gary presented the below six steps to ensure you are fully prepared in your career search:
- Identify your gifts:
To find your career of choice, you need to first determine what you like to do, what you do well, and what you want to learn. If you are not sure, there are many assessments you can take for no cost or for a nominal fee that will help target your strengths and gifts.
- Develop a Target List of Prospects
Start your search as specific as you can, using job search engines such as Indeed and CareerBuilder. List the industry, roles you can take in that industry, the strengths, abilities, or experiences you bring to that role, and then lastly a list of companies that have that need.
- Investigate and Research Prospects
You will need to know as much as you can about the company, products, services, customers, competitors, technologies used and the challenges the company faces. Know the answer to these questions: Is the company a good fit for me? What are the employer’s needs? How can I present myself to meet those needs? Identify key decision makers and influencers and discover what is important to each of them. LinkedIn does a great job of helping you locate such people and even provides you avenues through your own network to connect with them.
- Use Your Network to Contact Prospect
The easiest way to get an interview is to have someone else schedule it for you. It is critical to build your network before, during, and after your job search. To help expand your network, you can start by finding volunteer opportunities through sites such as www.ncnonprofits.org and www.volunteermatch.org. Alumni Networks are also effective with making connections and introductions. Scheduling an informational interview with your company of choice is also effective. Contact the CEO directly, or another executive with influence, share what you have learned about their industry and company, explain that you are interested in a career in the industry and specifically working with that company, and that you would like to speak with someone more about what steps you should take to earn that opportunity.
- Prepare for the Interview
To be fully prepared, you should research the company in depth using social media, the company website, press releases, and contacting people who work there. You should also research yourself on social media to ensure your presence there is not a detriment to your professional credibility. Most importantly, avoid the following:
(1) Poorly presenting yourself whether it’s the wardrobe, posture, resume, arrival time, or attitude;
(2) Poorly communicating both verbally and non-verbally;
(3) Displaying a lack of self-confidence and enthusiasm;
(4) Not asking questions;
(5) Criticizing your former employers;
(6) Being unable to explain job transitions or gaps.
- Follow Up Appropriately
After the interview, following up with the company and hiring authority is important. After your interview, write a handwritten thank you note to the hiring manager and mail it right away. In your thank you note, angle it towards the recipient and include details, illustrations, and examples of things you learned and appreciated during the interview.
Job-hunting is not easy and requires diligence, patience, and the ability to demonstrate vulnerability and ask for help. At Greene, we offer a Resource Center on our website that gives additional information on designing a stellar resumé and tips on preparing for your interview and job search. If you would like to find your career of choice, but do not know where to begin, we recommend the The O*Net Interest Profiler. The O*Net Interest Profiler can help you discover your interests and how they relate to the world of work.
Need more advice? Check out our resource center or give us a call today.