Seven Critical First Steps For A Confidential Job Search

Seven Critical First Steps For A Confidential Job Search

Martin Yate, CPC

If you are among the 75% of working professionals who are dissatisfied with their current gig and you’re looking for new opportunities, do whatever is necessary to secure it before you walk. And don’t inadvertently reveal your plans, because finding a job while working full-time is tough, but it’s a walk in the park compared to finding one when you are unemployed.

Great Ways To Get Fired

Using company time and equipment for anything job search related is signing your own death warrant in a world where downsizing is the easiest way to cut costs.

Make no mistake; you are being watched. So don’t use you work email to contact your resume writer or recruiter. Don’t surf job sites from your work computer. And, don’tleave your resume in the copier.

Great Ways To Secure Your Job

Keep your departure plans 100% confidential, as this is gossip almost noone can resist. Even if you only tell one co-worker during a mutual whine-fest, you’ve told one person too many.

Management will eventually find out and you’ll be toast just as soon as you can be replaced.

Don’t let anybody suspect that you’re losing interest in your job, or taking time off to meet recruiters and interview. Everything should go on as before. Maintain normal behaviors and performance. Dress the way you’ve always dressed, contribute to meetings what you’ve always contributed, and keep the same hours.

If anything, increase your commitment -- to your boss, your work, to your own professional competency and to your team. Become the ideal professional so can present at job interviews by supporting your commentary with valid illustrations from current activities.

Decide On A Target Job

Many people think that job change is a good opportunity to get a promotion. Sometimes this is possible, but mostly it is not. People get hired based on their credentials, not on their potential, while the majority of promotions come from a current employer where skills are already known.

You’ll typically need at least 75% of the required skills for a job to land an interview and to be seriously considered as a candidate. Your most realistic strategy is to pursue a job similar to the one you have now, but that offers different opportunities more in tune with your goals.

Upgrade Your Skills

Surfing for potential job options also helps you determine if there are in-demand skills that you are lacking. Your renewed enthusiasm and commitment at work puts you in a perfect position to pursue training and projects that will build these needed skills and enhance your marketability, while simultaneously becoming more valuable in your current job.

Define Your Sales Message

Probably the most financially important document you will ever own is your resume. It is the key that opens the doors of professional opportunity. Wit works, you work.

You need to learn how to write one a resume that captures a carefully defined sales message within a succinctly written story focused on a specific target job before starting your job search. Otherwise, invest in having a resume professionally written for you.

The internet has changed the way recruitment works and consequently changed everything about the way you conduct a successful job search, especially the way your resume is built. Your resume has to be search engine optimized in order to be discovered in resume databases. At the same time, it should be visually accessible to tell the right story in a recruiter’s initial six-second scan.

Build Your Professional Networks

If you don’t have a LinkedIn profile you should create one.If you have a profile, update it to reflect consistent messaging between your resume and social media profile.

Begin expanding your professional networks by connecting to everyone with whom you have worked. Then, join the LinkedIn special interest groups that are relevant to your job and profession. With these groups you are looking for a membership that reflects your job title as well as the job titles one, two and three levels above yours, and finally, those titles with which yours interacts on a regular basis.

This will help you to build a professional network optimally focused to help you land that next step on your path with minimal noise.

Manage Your Emotions

You cross an emotional bridge when you make the decision to move on, and there is often a temptation to make your workspace less personal as a visual reminder that this is no longer your home. However, you should keep everything normal.

Don’t pack up your photographs or other personalizations of your workspace. Keep everything as it is until you achieve your goal, have accepted a new job, have the offer in writing and have formally resigned.

Martin Yate, CPC, author of Knock 'em Dead: Secrets & Strategies for Success in an Uncertain World, is a New York Times and international bestseller of job search and career management books. He is the author of 11 job search and career management books published throughout the English speaking world and in over 50 foreign language editions. Over thirty years in career management, including stints as an international technology headhunter, head of HR for a publicly traded company and Director of Training and Development for an international employment services organization.

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