It goes down in the DM: How to get noticed in a saturated JOB market

Social media is filled with all type of features.  You can write on someone’s wall, share valuable content, but the feature with the highest stock is the …..INBOX (why you think you’re man won’t give you the password….hmmm).  Yo Gotti has made it that more acceptable to slide in someone’s DMs.  Why not see if your crush has the same feelings as you, never know if you don’t ask huh….. Shoot your shot right?  We will slide in and out all kinds of inboxes but what about the inbox of the hiring manager for a new job?

How many of us are not in the field that we would like to be in? 

In this day and age there are literally hundreds of people FIGHTING for that one position.  All we continue to do is…

Go online…

Fill out the application…..

Get rejected days later….

Go to the next job posting….

…..and do the same thing with the expectations to land the job.  When was the last time you tried a different approach to your job search? 

LinkedIn

LinkedIn is a platform to “manage your professional identity. Build and engage with your professional network. Access knowledge, insights and opportunities.” It is a social media beast for all things involving your career; you have the opportunity to post your resume, stay connected with your network, but my favorite is to see how my network is connected to folks that I want to get in contact with (you know, I have a friend of a friend of a friend that works at xyz).  When I ask people if they have a LinkedIn profile they either give me the dazed or created one and haven’t visited it since then. 

After a college professor had us create one in class one day; I did not use it to its fullest potential.  Instead I chopped it up to the fact that it wasn’t beneficial to me but in reality I did not take the time to learn HOW to use it.  At one point in life everything is a new experience, but it is up to us to educate ourselves on it. 

And that is exactly what I did, I found articles that helped me better understand a way to maximize the site (check out the article in Forbes How To Use LinkedIn: 5 Smart Steps to Career Success ).  The results were CRAZY! I was able to score a job with an organization that I had been applying for, for YEARS! (literally…..). , network with folks, connect people to each other, and keep up with my network. 

Thank You Cards

It seems as if the only thing that I get in the mail is bills, bills, bills, pre-approved credit cards, sale papers, bills, and books I order on Amazon.  So when I do receive a piece of mail outside of the norm it changes my whole day.  

I remember when I was a Graduate Assistant and I planned an event for businesses in the community to market to the students on the campus.  After the event I went to my mailbox only to find a hand written thank you card from one of the organizations that attended.  

Did they have to do it?..No 

Could they have sent an email? …….Yes

But going the extra mile not only made me feel AWESOME but whenever we needed services in that area I ALWAYS called them.  They became my go to; they created a lasting impression and developed a genuine relationship. 

If you have the opportunity to meet someone (at a networking event, an old mentor, someone who has taken the time to give you advice, etc) never hesitate to follow up with a thank you letter

It doesn’t have to be a 10 page thesis but keep it simple.

“It was a pleasure speaking with you at _______.  I really enjoyed our conversation about _____.  Look forward to connecting with you in the future.”

Whoop there it is!

The Alley Oop

Networking.  We all talk about it but how many of us actually know how to? When I was in Undergrad my definition of networking was following behind a classmate, taking a business card once they were finish talking, shaking their hand then leaving.  Just so you know that didn’t work AT ALL.  Well that was until I read Keith Ferrazzi’s book “Never Eat Alone.”  Can we say game changer? I altered my whole networking approach; instead creating relationships…..genuine relationships. 

Think of it like this.  If you were hungry and I had a 12 count of Chick Fi la’s chicken nuggets; I may have talked with you one time but vaguely remember and you asked for one of my nuggets…chances are I am going to say no (more like heeeelllllll to the nawwww)

But if I talked to you a couple times, know you a little bit those chances would increase greatly.  The same goes with networking; you have to build the relationship before you think about using it. 

Follow Up

You met someone, you all have an great conversation, they give you their business card and say hit them up…. annnnnd you never do.

Or

You email the hiring manager one time, they don’t respond and after a week or two you just let it go.

I was a shooter back in my hoopin’ days and you could be set up for the perfect shot, elbows in, eyes on the rim, legs into it, but if the follow through wasn’t there it would make or break your shot. 

When you meet someone, follow up within the next couple of days.  Check out “How to Master the Art of Networking Follow-Up” Don’t just leave the relationship out on the table in hopes that something will come of it.

Well there you have it.  If you find yourself roaming aimlessly in a cycle and nothing seem to be working; think outside the box and try a new method.  How can you get outside of your comfort zone? I mean that is where extraordinary things DO happen…… 

What ways have allowed you  to stand out among the crowd?