Making the Jobs Come to You – A Lesson in Lacking Humility and Poise.
Funny story, but only for someone who’s not fighting tooth and nail to get themselves any role they can get their grubby paws on. It’s also entirely unfunny for someone stuck in a role they hate, but if there’s anything that human beings are, it’s stupid. The grass is always greener.
If you’re unemployed, you hate everyone with a job. If you’ve got a job you hate, then you despite everyone who loves their jobs. If you love your job, then you’ll spend lunch time looking at LinkedIn trying to find a job that you’ll adore.
I’ve become something of a veteran of being offered jobs. I’m that guy that seems to jump onto jobs at the rate that average people jump onto a bus. Except I also got a car, so I don’t take buses anymore, and your hatred only makes me stronger. All joking aside, I’ve been lucky, but luck finds its way to those who work for it.
Now, you want a job, we all want jobs, and there’s a chronic lack of a job fairy or any sort of growing job market, unless you believe the party line screaming at you from campaign posters of ugly old men with obscenely perfect teeth. The weird thing is now that there’s a whole industry of people out there whose job it is to get you a job, and no, it’s not parents, its recruitment agencies, and for recruitment agencies, LinkedIn is their lifeblood and also sort of their enemy.
What’s LinkedIn? Get out. It’s something that you need. If you’re at all interested in getting a job and then turning that job into a career, then you need to be on LinkedIn. It’s like a Facebook for faceless corporate drones, but it also serves as an online record of your experience, your goals, your education, and what you have to offer a slew of companies and agencies that will pay money for the privilege of snooping through your business.
Sure on Facebook this is bad, nobody wants to have their future bosses scrutinise a multitude of pictures of them on the lash with their nipples showing moments before they walk into the interview room. I mean, the nipples showing on the night out, not before you walk into the board room, but both times are inopportune. On LinkedIn though, this is exactly what you want. If you plant it they will grow. If you build it they will come. Even if you’re not Kevin Costner and this ain’t no field of dreams.
There’s a whole hidden market of jobs out there, and arguably most positions never make it outside of internal recruitment or external recruitment processes to make it onto a website where you actively send your CV to someone. Networking is key. I got my last job from Facebook, technically. I got my current role because of my LinkedIn profile. Before that, I got my role at a recruitment agency through a university internship. I can’t stress it enough that networking is key. You’ve been told before that it’s not what you know but who you know. It’s actually a bitter smoothie of both.
Businesses are actively hunting you through LinkedIn and it’s time that you start seeing yourself as a special snowflake with a range of unique skills to bring to any company. You are not a worthless drone waiting to be hired; you only haven’t been hired because you haven’t been discovered yet. You don’t need a job, you can always live on benefits win the lottery, or start your own business, but a company can’t survive without you. Without getting all cuddly, you’re the lifeblood of an organisation. Your bosses need drones, you don’t need a boss.
So get out there and start networking. Get on LinkedIn, add old friends, old teachers, and preferably not anyone you’ve ever slept with in the past. Keep it professional, follow the companies you admire, and build up those connections. Increasingly the jobs are already gone before they reach a job website. Get your name, your face, and your skills out there, and let them come to you. Make yourself look like the big deal you’ve always wanted to be and when you walk into that interview you’ll find yourself ready to fill your own shoes.
Just, for God’s sake dress up nice, research the company, and have two questions prepared to ask at the end of the interview. It doesn’t matter how flashy your LinkedIn is if you can’t hold your own in the lion’s den.