Moving On

Today is my last day with Unisys and what an experience it has been. This was my first step into Corporate America recruiting, meaning non-agency/staffing (NOTE: if you work for an agency this is not meant as disrespect but it is a different experience altogether). I found I love working for a company and being able to develop direct relationships with my colleagues/customers which led me to having a very productive and educational 5+ year experience.

I was also afforded an amazing opportunity to lead the strategy and implementation of the careers aspect of our social media presence. I can’t describe what I was able to learn and implement in a fairly aggressive timeline.

As with anything, there were positive and negative takeaways from my tenure and certainly lessons learned. I wouldn’t trade the experience for anything, but am very excited for my next opportunity.

I now have a few days to recharge, refresh and gear up for my next role. You can bet you will hear from me again soon.

Love What You Do

In this economy, it maybe difficult to find a job you love but you absolutely should do everything you can to find that job.  Keep alternative options in mind.

You might start your own side project/business doing whatever is your passion.  If you are passionate about web design, gardening, interior decorating, sports management or anything else, chase that opportunity.  If you have a project that you enjoy in the works, you will feel your creative juices increasing and certainly your happiness will improve.

If you are looking to expand your experience in your current job, look to take on alternative projects that are outside of your particular scope.  Don’t look for the large project but something small that will expand upon your expertise and introduce you to new areas of business.

Make sure that whatever you do, it does not affect your normal workload.  Continue to prioritize your projects and focus on your main workload, but it certainly won’t hurt to touch upon something new.

How To Leverage Your Network When Looking For A New Career

So you’re looking for a new position.  What is your game plan?  Where do you start?  Do you know?

Time to go and post my resume.  Wait!  You’re going to what?leverage

Take a second and think for a moment.  Have you thought about your network on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn or any other site?  No.  Well this should be your starting point.

To be more specific, LinkedIn is probably your best place to go first.  Regardless of your perceived safety in your current position, you should update your online profile/resume 3-4 times a year.  Why, to let people know what you are doing.  Why is this important?  Networking.  You never know when you will connect with someone that you maybe able to help… or that might help you.

Facebook is a great next step.  Here you can network with friends and family; those people that tend to have a personal interest in helping you in your search.  You may need to follow up with them and make sure they are thinking of you but a good place to build from.

Twitter is great to connect with your followers and let them know your skills and what you are looking for. (but you network really well so your followers already know what you do!)

Sure, along the way you might check out the job boards and see what is out there because that is only human.  Did you know that the majority of jobs are not posted externally?  This is why networking and referrals become so vital in your search.

Work with your social network to let them know more about you, professionally speaking, so that you are in their mind at any given moment.  Also, get to know your network better.  You never know when you both might be able to assist each other.

What’s Your Hardest Req

What a line, and what a sales pitch for 3rd party recruiters.  Yep, I’ve used it as well in a different place and a different time.sales-pitch

Why did this work so well?  Agencies and other 3rd party recruiters had access to the sites that a lot of companies didn’t have access to recruit talent.  This was in a time when posting your resume was step #1 in your job search.

 

 Today, posting your resume isn’t always on your list.  Sure there are circumstances when you want your resume out there for recruiters to grab quickly and it is still completely acceptable and legit.

 

 However, in today’s social networking climate, the chance that you post a resume is reducing immensely.  Why, you can let your network know your status (looking for my next gig in _____) and then work your network OR let your network work for you.  This is part of the value in having a strong and relevant network and having a relationship with your network.  But I digress from this tangent… another topic for another day.

 

Companies are not as eager to give agencies or 3rd party recruiters their reqs because the introduction and adoption of social media into HR and recruiting activity into the corporate environment is allowing corporate recruiters to be seen and heard regularly, either in conjunction with their company logo or separate from that logo.

 

The only catch with this is that corporate recruiters now need to figure out the best way for candidates to see them, or want to see them.

 

Again, it comes back to value.  If all you do is push jobs then you will be viewed as a bot and typically not followed.  Network with your target market and get savvy in this area, it is where the passive candidate even looks to see what is going on.

Make A 5 Year Plan

One of the most used interview questions seems to be “where to see yourself in 5 years?”  There is a lot of psychology behind that question in terms of what a particular interviewer may want to hear but it really brings up a bigger question: do you know what you want to be doing in 5 years?calendar

Seriously, this is a great question.  The reason it is so great is that what you are doing right now has an impact on what you maybe doing.  I know a lot of us can’t see beyond this coming weekend but it truly is important to think about.

Goals keep us motivated.  Why?  It all comes back to personal branding.  How others perceive you directly impacts your career.

  • Do you want to make a career change?  Begin to network (through any number of social networking channels) with individuals in that profession and find out how they got started.  Then begin putting an action plan in line with calendar deadlines to keep you focused.
  • Do you want a promotion (or two)?  Begin by interviewing your manager, your manager’s peers, or your manager’s manager to see how they achieved those levels and what they may recommend for you to consider to begin preparing for that level.
  • Do you want to start your own company?  Think about a field where you can add value and begin to create a network that will help support your goals.  Don’t let them know immediately what you are doing but start to build those relationships now.

Everyone talks about setting up a plan.  Plans are easy and are typically altered over time for one reason or another.  Executing the plan is where the payoff comes.  Begin to set yourself up now for further success in the next 5 years.