My friend Amy just nabbed her ideal job, after a 6 month search. While she’s thrilled where she landed, she knows this won’t be the last company she ever works for.
“Next time, I don’t want the job search to take so long. I’m dreaming, aren’t I?” she asked me.
Not at all. In fact, I wish more people thought like Amy.
No job is permanent. All it takes is one little change of command to get hauled into HR on a dime. No one expects to be laid off or stuck in a dead-end job, but that’s life these days. Here are 5 steps you can take to pivot into your next job breathlessly, insanely fast.
1. Engage on LinkedIn enthusiastically
First, your LinkedIn profile is optimized, current and engaging, right?
Second, if you’re not active on LinkedIn now, today is a great day to start. William Arruda suggests all you need is 9 minutes a day:
- share a status update on something you’re an expert on
- request to connect with someone you admire
- join a Group, comment and provide insights
- share an accomplishment
Worried your boss will think you’re passively job searching as a result of your activity on LinkedIn? Choose one of these responses:
- “You’re not interested in massive brand reach and lead generation? Oh my, we need to talk!”
- “By highlighting my accomplishments, it makes YOU look good. Other companies enjoy doing business with winners.”
I have a lot of clients who love their jobs, who actively work the LinkedIn ecosystem. They understand this platform is much more than a job search tool: It’s a vibrant way to provide value, serve others, and learn.
2. Keep a running list of the ongoing impact you’re having, quantifying results.
I’ve created LinkedIn profiles and resumes for CFOs, Lean Six Sigma experts and Sales Managers who scratched their heads when I asked them how they contributed to revenue, sales and bottom line – the very information hiring managers care about most.
You will make your life so much easier at the next go-round by tracking your accomplishments along the way. While your job isn’t only about numbers, you will forget the results you created during that product launch 2 years ago. Record your successes!
3. Have productive conversations at least twice a month with people who work at interesting companies
Really. You can do 2 a month. Over a year, that’s 24 people you’ve developed relationships with whom you can help, who may be able to help/refer yousomeday.
I get it. It’s so easy to say, I haven’t got time to meet new people. Consider this: People are much more open to meeting with a stranger who is employed than one who isn’t. (Though you meet with and help job seekers, right?)
To find both interesting companies and the people who work there: Google
- Top Workplaces 2016 in [your city]
- [your state] chamber best places to work
- Top companies for work-life balance
- Contact thought leaders in your industry and ask them
Once you’ve discovered which companies to pursue, find insiders and hiring managers who work there using LinkedIn, and write a glowing, personalized connection request.
And at the end of every productive conversation please always ask, “How can I help you?”
4. Grow your number of LinkedIn connections
The greater number of connections you have, the greater your reach. The more genuine, legitimate 1st degree connections you have, the more people you have in your corner who can refer you to people in their network.
It’s to your advantage to be a genuine connector, not a people collector.
5. Grow your number of LinkedIn Recommendations
Recommendations are like stars on Yelp – and you can never have too many. Make sure recommendations written by colleagues, mentors and managers are specific and reflect the superpowers you most enjoy using.
I really like this recommendation template by Adrian Granzella Larssen. It’s not rude or over-stepping by inserting it into your LinkedIn recommendation request. On the contrary! Do you enjoy writing a recommendation from scratch? Didn’t think so. Help out your reference by providing a guideline. They will appreciate you.
6. Do you pass the “ layoff test ?”
I learned the phrase, “pass the layoff test” from Alan Henry. Here’s the test: If you were laid off today, do you have 10 people in your network you can reach out to, for support and to troubleshoot next-steps? If not, that’s a sign you’ve let your network languish. Time then to get to work and rebuild relationships.
John Maxwell says, “Your network is your net worth.” In other words, your best asset is the people you know. Take good care of your future while you’re still employed by following the steps above, and remember: The shortest distance to a job is measured by the number of people who are thrilled to refer you.
Stay in touch, build new relationships and keep thrilling others by serving well.
Julie Bondy Roberts, MA, GCDF is a certified LinkedIn™ Profile Writer and LinkedIn trainer. She is the founder of Coming Alive Career Coaching, and loves teaching people how to get found on LinkedIn. A participant in one of her workshops recently wrote: “Julie’s LinkedIn class took me from a skeptical LinkedIn novice to a believer in the power of LinkedIn!”
To learn more about LinkedIn™ Profile Optimization packages & training your group or organization on growing your business through LinkedIn, contact Julie at firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also follow Julie onTwitter and Facebook.