Career coaches can drone on about resumes, networking and interviewing techniques. But how do real people get real jobs in a tight job market?
We interviewed a half dozen job seekers who landed positions in the last few months, and they told us some surprising things. Most received offers within three weeks of reaching out to a new company. Others found their jobs on Craigslist or TweetMyJobs, which career coaches rarely mention. Job seekers called, blogged and tweeted their way into new roles, proving that in this job market, tenacity and creativity go a long way.
One thing we heard is that you need to actively reach out to companies you admire. Amanda, an admissions officer and teacher in New York City, was gainfully employed when she started sending out feelers earlier this year. She had asked for a raise and gotten less than she requested, so she was ready for a change.
As an admissions officer, she works with many schools. At one school, Amanda thought the person who had the equivalent of her job might retire. So she sent a letter and attached a copy of her resume. She wrote about how much she valued the programs and the students the school produced. The school invited her in for an interview, and she got an offer three weeks later.
"This might seem obvious, but if you feel an affinity toward an organisation or company, reach out to them," says Amanda. "Tell them what specifically interests you."
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