The Gutsy Guide to a Successful Search – Career Coach MJV
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The Gutsy Guide to a Successful Search

What I know about job hunting is that it is the gutsy gal who gets the job.  Most of us aren’t born gutsy, it is an acquired skill.  My most successful clients are those who are step up and embrace boldness despite their trepidation about doing so.

Here are five strategies for upping your gutsy quotient:

Deliver great materials. You have to start with an outstanding package. That includes a fabulous résumé, reference sheet, backup materials, and online presence. And, you have got to know what it is that you do that is better or different than your competition.

One of my clients contacted several search consultants earlier this year with ho-hum marketing materials. She generated absolutely no interest. It was then that a friend referred her to me. A few months later it was a different story when she contacted these same recruiters and followed up with a stellar marketing package. This time they took her phone call, requested that she stay in touch mentioning several potential opportunities on the horizon. The funny thing was that many of these headhunters didn’t remember talking with her just two months earlier.

Exhibit unwavering confidence.
You have to believe in yourself. If you are not ready, get ready. Do whatever you need to do to build your confidence. Sometimes this means getting outside help so you understand how to effectively sell yourself.

Develop an affinity for the telephone
.  Never mind all the hoopla about the internet; pick up the darn phone. Make some well-placed phone calls. Use your connections to garner introductions to the industry professionals who need what you have to offer. You never know who knows whom and you won’t find out unless you ask. Figure out what you are selling then get on the telephone. A short conversation delivers more impact than ten emails ever will.

Increase your selling power.
It is all sales. Every day we either intentionally sell ourselves or we unconsciously undersell ourselves. Stop worrying about what you don’t have and start selling what you do have.  I encourage my clients to uncover the hidden benefits they bring to employers. Sometimes not having exactly what the employer wants can be perceived as a benefit if presented in the right light.

For a new perspective on selling, read Daniel H. Pink’s new release, To Sell is Human: The Surprising Truth About Moving Others. Like it or not, we are all in sales now.

Go the whole nine yards and then some.
Job hunting always takes longer than you expect. It requires more of you then you think it will. Embrace the concept of being, giving and doing more in your pursuit of the right opportunity.

When clients arrive at an interview preparation session they are often surprised by the amount of work they need to do to be fully prepared for their next interview. They imagine that we will simply role play typical questions and viola, they will be ready to knock ‘em dead. More often than not, they leave with a homework assignment and a renewed appreciation for what being prepared really means.

It is your job search. It is your life. Be bold, go after what you want, ask for help when you need it and say, “thank you” often.  Mary Jeanne Vincent is a career expert and strategist with a private coaching practice in Monterey. She may be reached at 831.657.9151