Thursday, October 19, 2006

Lost your job – what do you do?

The scenario:

“Yikes! You just lost your job! You’ve been so busy at *work* that you don’t feel your network is as strong as you would like it to be! What are you going to do with (and to) your network in the next 6 weeks as you begin an aggresive job search campaign? And, outside of your network, what job search tactics will you employ? Or your best networking tips related to job searches”. - Blog carnival by Jason Alba

Phone & e-mail:
Firstly, I would update my mentor (if you don’t have one yet, this is the right time to do so) on my unfortunate situation and seek his immediate advice and also share with him on my plan of action and listen to what he has to say. Secondly, pick up the phone and talk to my favorite recruiter and also later call my not-so-favorite recruiters. Thirdly, I would then personally call up all my networks, spend time catching up with them and subtly enquire from them if they are aware of any new jobs around. I would try not to be too aggressive or desperate the first time around. Showing desperation at the first meeting/chat after a long gap can be perceived to be not a ‘cool’ thing to do and for some it might even sound rude or might even be construed to being taken for granted. One has to be respectful and not take any relationship for granted, very basic and important. After all the talk is done suggest a personal meeting over a cup of coffee or lunch/dinner, provided you and your network are within the same city or vicinity. Personal meeting are always more effective then catching up over the phone. I’ll proceed to update my network on my situation, be nice and enquire about his health, about the market/industry, whatever, and be prepared to share my plans and my actual situation. I would then follow up this meeting with a phone call after 3-4 days and this time round I can be completely open with him and share my intention to look for a job immediately. I will check with him if he is aware of any job openings that will suit my profile and request him to talk to his network to enquire any relevant job openings on my behalf. I will be assertive about my intentions but will not show any sign of desperation. To those in my next level of network, I’ll try calling them else make sure I write to them and update them on my situation and enquire from them if they would be kind enough to refer if they know of any openings that would be suitable for my experience. I would also remember to thank them in anticipation of their help/assistance.
I’d use the messenger and the contacts to spread the word around that I’m seeking for a new job. Sometime, those contacts even though they might not be recruiters will know of recruiters whom they can touch base and enquire for any job openings on my behalf. Some folks do have this strong tendency to go out of their way to help others, pray you do have such contacts in your list.
I would also start paying close attention to all my contacts and my contact’s contacts. And try getting myself introduce to them or connecting to them.
Professional Membership:
I’d also find out about the members within the memberships that I currently belong and look around for anyone whom I can network with and get their advice/help/references.
If you do blog within the relevant area of your professional practice, do get in touch with all your fellow bloggers and subtly enquire around for any relevant job openings.
Mailing group:
If you are part of a mailing group (e.g.; like yahoogroups), do check for any relevant job postings by fellow group members. Also do touch base directly with some of the members whom you think might be able to assist you.

When all the above means are exhausted, the next best option is to go to Job sites and job boards and news paper/magazine advertisements and start checking out the relevant job postings and start applying. This traditional mode of job search sometimes can be very effective and that’s because the openings are generally of urgent in nature and that’s one reason why in the first place the job has been advertised.
Also, it might be worthwhile for me to shortlist few of the companies that I would like to work with, visit their website and check out if they have any relevant job postings on their website.
The last and the most extreme mode of job search outside of one’s network will be blogging. This is the age of web2.0, go ahead blog your way to the attention of your next employer. Blog about anything that is relevant to ‘the’ company that you really wish to work for, do your bit of digging and research, and impress them on how much you know about them, their products and services, talk about any market feedback if you know of any, et al.
And should all else fails, you might even try filming your CV and distributing it to all your prospective employers – this one is innovative but extreme and sure to attract attentions – both wanted and unwanted.
Finally, be passionate about yourself, your profession and your job search and you will find that sooner rather than later your search will land you your next job. Also in the process of searching for a new job and through the journey you would have importantly renewed and strengthen your network, met some wonderful new contacts, increased your knowledge and becoming wiser and more prepared should you have to search for a new job in the near future again.

*** Happy job hunting!***


kapilvijan said...

Nice suggestions, and only such an experienced guy can say this

Jason Alba said...

Joe, excellent post, you put a lot of thought into this. I'm excited to link back to this on the 6th, and value your input from your perspective!

Raz said...

Was looking through my shout archive and relinked to you. Just to let you know I have given in to my passion in recruitment and now working with JobStreet. Hope we have chance to work together in the near future!

Dan said...

Hi Joe, I found your post via the Blog Carnival, and, man, am I glad I found it. Great stuff!