Job Search Trick #1: Search In Niches

Our first job search trick is intended to get you to think about targeting your job search.

Everyone advises you to post your resume on leading sites like Monster.com and Indeed.com. And there’s nothing wrong with that — my clients have been hired using both.

But don’t forget the growing number of job postings found on niche Web sites that cater to specific industries, associations and other affinity groups.

This tactic worked for one of my clients Carla S., from Marshall, Minnesota.

“I interviewed for and got offered a great job this week after applying to openings on sites from my industry, like www.jobsinlogistics.com and www.careersinfood.com ,” says Carla.

Action Step: Follow Carla’s lead and focus your search on sites that appeal to a narrow audience. As a result, you’ll likely find less competition for jobs that are closely matched to your qualifications.

Find niche job boards at sites like www.nicheboards.com and by doing searches for keywords (“YOUR INDUSTRY + jobs”) at search engines like www.google.com, www.yahoo.com, www.teoma.com and www.kartoo.com.

Job Search Trick #2: Network Backwards

Sometimes a job search is best when you start and the end and work backwards.

One client, Jeff R. from Prior Lake, Minnesota, hit pay dirt in February by networking among contacts most people would never consider calling. He contacted potential employers from his LAST job search – companies he had interviewed with but not accepted job offers from.

“I emailed a manager I had interviewed with two years ago, before my latest job. He had moved to a different part of the company, but he referred me to the right decision maker. That new person interviewed me and offered me a job,” says Jeff.

Action Step: Don’t forget to look both ways when you network — forward and back, all the way back to your college career office and internships, no matter how long ago you graduated.

And … don’t stop with your last job search. Ask your spouse/significant other, friends, family, neighbors if they have contacts from their last job search you could talk to. You’re sure to find something. But you have to ask!

Job Search Trick #3: Reject Rejection

Rejections are a regular part of a job search, and our next job search trick covers how to handle them.

Your response to a letter of rejection may, incredibly, get you the job, according to California-based James Adams, a career expert and former job-search consultant to the U.S. government.

“I was consulted by a woman who interviewed very well for a position, but still got a letter of rejection after applying. Most people would have torn up the letter and gone on to other things,” says Adams.

Instead, Adams told her to write a gracious reply, thanking the company for their time and reaffirming her strong desire to work for them.

Did it work?

“The top contender for the position had to relocate on short notice. The hiring panel remembered the letter they got from the really eager and pleasant woman who replied to their rejection letter. She got the job,” says Adams.

Action Step: Write a polite reply to every rejection notice you get. Thank the company for their time and restate your strong desire to work for them.

One more thing, I would suggest you include a final sentence requesting that the hiring manager(s) pass your name on to other fine companies who may be looking for talented employees.

Say something like this:

“Because you saw enough value in my background to consider me for this position, would you be so kind as to pass my name and resume on to anyone you know who would benefit from my skills and experience? Thank you very much in advance!”

Job Search Trick #4: Networking Begins At Home

Whether you want it to or not, every job search begins with your network, and your network begins at home.

When networking and sending out resumes, most folks tend to search far and wide for job leads. But don’t overlook your own family as a potential gold mine of employment information.

One client of mine, Paul W. from Columbia Heights, Minnesota, found a job this way in accounting and financial management:

“I emailed over 100 resumes to employers and was networking seriously, eventually getting 8-10 good interviews. But it was my wife who helped me find my new job,” says Paul.

His wife told her friend, who told her boss about Paul’s qualifications. That wife’s friend’s boss offered Paul an interview, and eventually, a job. It’s proof that you should leave no stone unturned in your networking efforts, even under your own roof!

Other examples: my wife got a job interview from a contact she made at our daughter’s school … my brother got a phone call and an interview from an old high school buddy. And that was just during one two-week span, in my own family!

There are thousands of job leads out there, most of them unadvertised, waiting to be uncovered by you. Go get them.

Action Step: Every single relative in your family is a potential gold mine of employment information, especially those who are in positions dealing with management, human resources, sales and marketing – they will interact with hiring decision makers every day.

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