Monday, December 21, 2009

Using Connector Tactics to Land A Job (or help someone else advance their career)

Maribeth Kuzmeski
Red Zone Marketing

(get Maribeth's marketing guide fore 20% off when you use code GROUCHY)

Many people are looking for jobs these days. If you know someone looking for a job, give them 9 proven Connector Tips to help make their job search successful!

1. Search Everywhere For Job Connectors! “Job Connectors” are the best source to get you that key interview and land your best new job. Connectors are willing to share information about you with others, they have a wide network, and they like introducing people. Find these connectors to help you get your next job. You will find them at every meeting you attend, in your neighborhood, at your church, at your former employer, within associations, etc.

2. BE a Connector: BE a connector yourself by finding networks of people you can build relationships with that will lead you to your next job. But don’t confuse this with random networking. Successful connecting requires taking a targeted approach to meeting the right people everywhere you go. Make a list of the 20 Powerful Connections or types of connections that would be able to help you get that next job. Then find out where they are and go to them. Being a connector and reaching connectors requires research and patience. But the payoff is enormous!

3. Check Out Your Interviewer. If you know who you will be sending a resume to or who will be interviewing you, conducting a little research in advance of your communication can be a big advantage.

During an interview I conducted with a candidate for my company, the candidate began talking about how much he liked one of the books I had written years ago. He quoted from the book and offered a story of how he used the information in his career. He had me! I had spent a lot of time and sweat equity writing that book, and the fact that he liked it and gave me information that proved he really read it made me remember him. And somehow he seemed smarter! After ten interviews in one day, people can start to blur. He never did.

The fact is that we didn’t end up hiring him because he had little experience in the type of service marketing we needed, but I gave him a high recommendation to one of our firm’s clients and he was hired within a week!

4. Get Face-to-Face With Potential Employers! Find a way to get in front of your potential employer. These days it is much harder to show potential employers what you are all about and to forge a connection with them because so much of the pre-hiring process is done online and through email. That is why it is essential that you find a way to communicate face-to-face. Dropping off a follow-up note or resume are great opportunities for getting some face time with a potential employer. Another great face-to-face opportunity comes after the interview. To show you paid close attention to everything your interviewer said, stop by her office with an article that you think would be of interest to her or a small gift (e.g., a box of candy) based on some information you found out during the interview.

And once you are face-to-face, in an interview or otherwise, focus on having eye contact throughout. Lean in, show them you are interested in everything they say, and think before you answer any question. Thoughtful deliberation can be difficult if you’re nervous, but it is critical in answering your potential employer’s questions to the best of your ability. Establishing this face time is sure to set you apart from your job market competition.

5. Make an Impact by Using Video. If you really want to capture the attention of a potential employer, record a quick video. Use it to get an interview or as a follow-up after an interview. Here’s how it works: Instead of just emailing a resume or a post-interview thank-you note, include a link to a video of you talking directly to them. Carefully script your response and record the quick message using a Flip video camera or even a web cam.

Script Out Your Video Messaging to Get The Interview:

1. The video should be no longer than one or two minutes.

2. Introduce yourself.

3. Identify the job you would like to be interviewed for.

4. Tell them three things about your background that may make them interested in interviewing you.

5. Thank them for watching the video, ask them for the interview and give them your contact information!

Then post your video online and share the link or use a service like to email your video to your potential employer. You will definitely make an impact!

6. Practice Your Interview Answers With a Friend or Mentor. Don’t go into your interview cold. There is too much competition for jobs to take anything for granted. Think of potential questions you may get about your previous positions and how you will answer these questions and then go over them with a friend or mentor. Work on thoughtfully communicating how you will deliver benefits in a given position, not just on what you know. Become an expert at clearly communicating your strengths both verbally and in writing.

Practice providing information that is compelling, impactful, and clearly expresses how you will benefit the employer. Give your interviewers reasons to think about hiring you, not reasons to end the interview early!

7. Use Words that Connect. In interviews, try to scrap your memorized job pitch in favor of a more natural conversation. You’ll seem more at ease and authentic—and your potential employer will be more inclined to believe everything he’s hearing. In written communication, be sure to answer all parts of any questions you receive. And carefully read over the job description so that you can communicate your specific strengths based on the job’s requirements.

8. Prepare in advance to follow up after the interview. Plan on sending an immediate thank-you note through email or social media. Then, to ensure you are using every available option to stay in front of your potential employer, consider also sending a note in the mail. Yes, the mail. The note should recap what you discussed in the interview and reinforce what you can deliver to the company.

9. Show Passion! If you really want a particular job, tell those hiring why (not because you need a job – that will not separate you from the rest). Share tangible reasons why this is the perfect job for you and at the same time show them in advance the same passion you will give to the job once you land it. Enthusiasm, energy and passion are contagious and are traits you want to accentuate while in the job search.

GET Maribeth's great MARKETING PLANNING GUIDE plus free bonuses for 20% off when you enter code GROUCHY.

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Maribeth Kuzmeski, is the author of the new book, The Connectors: How the World’s Most Successful Businesspeople Build Relationships and Win Clients for Life (Wiley, September 2009, ISBN: 978-0-4704881-8-8, $22.95)


Anonymous said...

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Alexander said...

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