Many times when I first talk with a client, it’s because they are frustrated because they’ve been sending out resumes, usually dozens a day, for months, and they’ve gotten little to no response from their efforts. My first question to them usually is “So, what are you looking for?”. The usual answer to that is either “anything” or “I don’t know”.

If this is the case, it’s no wonder that no one is responding. People hire others because they need help and you’ve let them know how you can help them. If you don’t know who you’re searching for, then you won’t know what to do to help them. Otherwise, you’re shooting into the deep void hoping to hit a target you can’t see.

The reason why so many people panic in the job search is because they feel out of control and don’t feel prepared for what’s ahead. My answer us to “get a clue” and do some research to find out what it is you’re looking for. Granted, to hone your goals, you might need to work with someone like me to tease out your goals, but many people can just start doing tea search and that will help.

I like to say there are two ways to do research:

Dead & Alive

Dead Research means that you don’t get any response when you ask a question. This is anything in print. You can get a lot of information that way but it’s static.

Live Research means that you get a response when you ask questions. This is actually talking with people. You will always get more up-to-date and dynamic information this way, and you will also be building relationships. Informational interviews, networking events, etc. are great places to find out more information if you are focused on what you’re looking for and have a plan.

Most people hide behind their resumes and computers and never get out to talk with people. This is one of the main reasons that it takes people so long to get a job. If you don’t do your research, you’ll be the “deer in the headlights” and not been seen as an asset.

So, do you know what you’re stepping into?

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