If you have ever seen 24 on Fox, then you know who Jack Bauer is and what he is all about. If you have not seen this counterterrorist agent “on steroids” in action, just know that he is willing to do anything to get the bad guys. Whether you like Jack or not, or don’t even know him, you may be asking, “What in the world does this have to do with my job search?” Well, read on and I will explain.
There are several basic principles involved in how the character of Jack Bauer operates during any investigation. Employing these principles, in a somewhat less extreme format, in your job search can lead to astounding results.
The first step in the process, and the one that many skip entirely, is to conduct some research on the market you are interested in. This includes learning about the players involved, their financial status, the geographies they serve, and other information that will help you identify the organizations you can target during your search.
Furthermore, try to find the names of people within those organizations that may be a decision maker or influencer to the hiring process. You can also try to obtain the names and contact information for others within the organization that may be able to refer or introduce you to the hiring manager.
Leverage Your Resources
Like Jack Bauer, you want to use all the resources at your disposal to help you with your search. He doesn’t save the world all by himself. He gets help from lots of people along the way. Some of these folks are those you would expect him to get help from, such as other personnel from other government agencies, while others are very unlikely sources of assistance. Consider all of your resources, and don’t discount people from your arsenal just because they don’t fit the typical mold of those you would expect help from.
Go On the Offensive
An all-out attack of these organizations is called for. Send them your resume by mail, post it to their website, email it to any contacts there, find recruiters that have relationships with them, and try cold calling the hiring manager directly to get an opportunity to explain what you have to offer them. Too many candidates are way too passive in this area of the search. Don’t be afraid to put yourself out there and go outside your comfort level. This is your career we are talking about here. Can you really be satisfied with anything but the best?
Think of it as a life-and-death situation like Jack Bauer does. You must be willing to do whatever it takes to be successful in your search. The results will be most rewarding.
So who am I anyway? Why do I think my advice is so valuable?
My name is Stephen Van Vreede. My company is called No Stone Unturned, and I have spent 15 years on both sides of the corporate hiring experience.
The short story is that I have an MBA in Marketing from Villanova University and a dual B.S. degree in Finance & Logistics from the University of Maryland. I am a certified professional résumé writer (CPRW) and a member of the Professional Association of Résumé Writers and Career Coaches (PARW/CC). As I mentioned, I paid my dues in the corporate world eventually running a large-scale call center for a major truck rental company, and I have spent the past 7 years with No Stone Unturned, assisting job seekers in achieving their goals.
In February 2009, I launched a new group job hunting networking site: NoddlePlace.com. It is absolutely FREE to join, and you have access to everything on the site. Come check it out at NoddlePlace. You can also follow me on Twitter.