Running With The Bulls

When you are in a job search, running with the bulls is just as dangerous and stressful as taking to the streets of Pamplona in July or trying to defend Derrick Rose as he saunters to the hoop in the NBA playoffs.  I know you have heard it numerous times before but it is very competitive out there and you need to continually emphasize your unique brand and sole abilities for the position in question.

Some of the techniques that you can use to make yourself an outstanding candidate for a job are:

*  Never use the same Cover Letter and Resume – make each correspondence specific for the job in question.  Even if you just tweak it a little, do make sure you are appropriate and specific for this particular job.

*  Check out the particular position and association at Guide Star.  You can determine the budget and also what the previous administrator’s compensation package was.  No need to waste your time or the search committee’s time if it isn’t a comfortable fit.

*  Make the correspondence as robust as possible.  Use action words and you never assisted – you were a co-leader.  Make sure you also provide a numerical result at all times.  Non-dues revenues rose 25% because of your actions or the Annual Meeting attendance rose 50% because of your business plan, etc.

*  By all means spell check and double check all your correspondence.  I know that society is getting much more lax in tolerating spelling and grammatical errors but a resume and cover letter is not the time to be casual about anything.  You need to present yourself as a professional and that you respect the process.

*  Find an interesting way to get the attention of the reader.  Make sure in the Cover Letter that you reference what you can achieve for them.  Indicate in the correspondence that the greatest element of your resume is yet to be written.  It isn’t too schmaltzy while it indicates that your future work is just as important to you as what you have achieved up to now.

*  Be active in the blogosphere.  It is important to make sure your name is out there for all to see.  Google yourself and see what comes up.  If there are issues of past experiences – clear those up before others see them.  Do get rid of those unfortunate photos of yourself in uncomfortable environments.  Emphasize your business acumen with LinkedIn while your social attributes should remain on Facebook.  Segregating your two lives is crucial.  Make sure you only provide access to any of the social media formats to your approved connections and/or friends.

*  Publicity is always good.  Find time during your search to promote yourself and do good for others.  There are more than enough charities for you to help.  It proves to the world what kind of person you are while also giving you the opportunity to hone your skills in another environment.  It also breaks up the monotony of the job search regimen.

*  Keep in contact with friends and family.  Besides the support that they will provide – they certainly can give you new insights on potential jobs.  You might be depressed at times but do make sure that these people only see your good side.  Let’s face it, anyone who has gone through a search knows how much fun it can be so don’t wear out your welcome by whinning and complaining about the ills of your world.  Remember – last I checked we have our health and no one has died!

*  Schedule your day as if you are employed.  Make sure you are at your desk every day at a designated time.  Though you no longer need to dress for success at home – do make yourself presentable because it will make you feel much better.  I have seen too many job seekers who start waning the longer the process goes on.  You must be diligent in your actions and deeds because though frustrations do set in you must never let them get the best of you.  Above all, stay positive.

*  Finally make your schedule so that you always have something to look forward to.  Even a phone call or lunch out can be reinvigorating for you.  Continue attending professional meetings.  It is an opportunity for you to mingle with others while also providing a little updated information for your career.

We all know that the job search process can define the men from the boys.  You can be continuously gored by the bulls as you proceed.  Every day is a new opportunity to make a differnce, though sometimes it can seem that you are only taking baby steps in the right direction.  Most people understand the situation you are in and will provide as much assistance as you allow them.  Those individuals who have never been in your shoes – will never understand and frankly might not be the best influence for you at this time anyway.  And if all fails, remember that red wine is good for your heart!


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