Last night my wife and I got home from a date and found the kitchen sink faucet was … broken. I don’t even know how to describe the problem, and I have NO idea how the break could have happened.
I wasn’t happy… thinking it would cost at least a few hundred dollars to have a plumber come in and replace the faucet.
I went to YouTube with the slightest hope that I could be encouraged to fix it on my own. I don’t have many tools, especially specialty tools, and I am nervous about doing something that might cause water damage later. But one YouTube video said replacing the faucet is actually one of the easiest things to do… so off to HomeDepot I went, to get what I needed to solve this serious problem
All I needed to replace the faucet was about 12 dollars of tools, the new faucet ($150!! yuck), YouTube, and some confidence. This afternoon I completed the project, by myself!
I thought I was really far having my sink fixed, but in fact I had everything I needed (after I bought the “basin wrench”… who knew).
What does this mean for job seekers?
I would bet you have 90 – 95% of what you need. Here’s what you might lack:
The right tools. I’m not going to beat around the bush – you need JibberJobber to organize your job search. If I had a nickel for every time someone said “I wish I would have known about JibberJobber a few months ago, when I started!” I would be, well, rich. And just like the basin wrench, JibberJobber is very inexpensive (it is free for life, and you have an optional $10/month upgrade).
CONFIDENCE. Last night I had no confidence in myself to do this job. But after watching a video I thought “okay, maybe I can do that.” It helped that the guy said this was one of the easiest jobs to do… So let ME tell YOU: Finding a job can be easy and enjoyable! I know you don’t believe me now, but once you “get it,” you should enjoy the process, and you should make great strides. But learn tactics and techniques and strategies. Without guidance, I would have had a watery mess in my kitchen! YOU CAN DO IT! I and want to help!
There you go – a peek into my morning, and how I take normal plumbing issues and think about YOUR job search.
A couple of weeks ago I got the first email of what I think will be a short, successful job search campaign from Brandon Uttley.
Brandon was at a presentation I did in Charlotte, North Carolina a couple of years ago. Charlotte was one of my favorite trips… a delightful town, delightful culture, and really nice/cool people.
Enter Brandon’s Open Source Job Search newsletter (for lack of a better word). You can see it in its entirety here. Here’s my play-by-play breakdown:
1. Tells you what it is… and piqued my curiosity since I have never heard of an “open source job search.”
2. Can you help? ASK, people, ASK! If you don’t ask, people might not catch that you hope for their help!
3. In my email browser I didn’t open images, so it looked funky. Always provide this option (usually the newsletter software does this automatically). It points to this page.
4. In this image it’s clear what Brandon does, loves, specializes in and is looking for. Clear and concise.
1. Big news? I want to know about your big news… Curiosity-piquing…
2. Again, ask for help! Make it clear this is not just an email with information, but a request.
3. This makes me feel special… I’m among the first to know? Cool… now I think you value our relationship. Make me feel special.
4. Again, again, again… ASK FOR HELP!
1. In case you forgot, or never really knew, this is who I am and what I’m looking for. The are industry or profession keywords that are critical. Assume people know about you, professionally, and you could be very wrong. Make it clear what they should think about you.
2. This reminded me a bit of “objective statements” on a resume, which are outdated… but I think it’s highly appropriate for this email. If asking for help and introductions and leads it makes sense to let me know what you want (full-time, not moving, etc.).
1. What? This isn’t one-sided, ask-only? You are going to help me? Nice… !
2. This entire email has an honest (aka, authentic) taste to it. Keep it real, no fluff… just like our relationship, and I appreciate that.
3. Notice the multiple ways you can contact me, or learn more about me. Scrolling down (which I don’t have a screenshot of) shows even more places you’ll find him, including LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, etc.
4. He is going to share his industry expertise? Cool, I’ll be sure to read.
5. Great addition of the photo… many will remember you but some might need the visual reminder.
Again, keeping it honest. I like that you share issues that others might bring up – address them head-on.
This is really helpful to the reader, who is likely in their own transition, or thinking about one. Getting this industry-leader input is really valuable for my own career, and I appreciate this GIVE tactic.
Can you do this? Yes, definitely. This might be too long, or too much, but remember, Brandon is a social media expert, and I would EXPECT him to do this. This series of newsletters (I’ve already gotten the second one) is essentially his PORTFOLIO. How better to show your grasp on all-things-social than to do something this classy and complete?
I’ve thought about this for a few years… last week I sent my first batch of Pink Slip cards to an evangelist as a “thank you” for something.
Don’t know what I’m talking about? Here’s a post from October 2010 where I talk about how awesome they are.
Not to brag, but … well, okay I’m bragging. Yes, I’m bragging. This is one of my most brilliant ideas (I’ve only implemented a few of the brilliant ideas). Why? Because as I’ve travelled the country speaking I’ve left thousands of pink slips with people who wanted stacks of them to hand out.
Did you catch that?
People asked me to hand out my marketing tools.
They wanted to. It is fun, and you can get a fun reaction from people when you give them one. Some people took a few, others took dozens. In cities like Baltimore, McLean (and surrouding cities), Phoenix, the Silicon Valley area, Minneapolis and more I’ve had my evangelists giggle and hand out my Pink Slips.
I’ve only done that when I’ve spoken, but this year I’ve taken on less speaking and more projects from The International JibberJobber Headquarters, which means I have a bunch of cards in my closet. And I want to get them out on the street, where they belong.
Can I send you some pink slips? If so, please use the Contact Us form and I’ll mail you about 20. And if you want more, I’ll send more.
There is no charge for this. Have fun, give them out, and I thank you in advance for helping me get the word out about JibberJobber.
Click here to ask for your Pink Slip cards… make sure I have your mailing address!
Our written documentation has gone through some changes, and it’s not up to where it needs to be yet.
But, we have it. On Wednesday’s user webinar someone said they LOVED the Table of Contents for the written documentation. I hardly go there, and honestly didn’t know what was there… but yeah, it’s cool
I sent an “announcement” (which for me is a newsletter) to my LinkedIn Group about 3rd and 4th degree contacts. The idea is that you MUST network deeper, asking the “who do you know” questions. You can see that article, and the comments, here.
Rita Carey, a professional job search coach, added this in the comments:
I would like to add a second recommendation…stay in touch. If you wish people a Happy Thanksgiving with a little update and express your gratitude for their support, you will accomplish two things: you will demonstrate professionalism and they will remember you and your transition.
I have seen this done so well…not just at Thanksgiving, of course, but that occasional email or phone call that says “I thought about you today”…. that includes an article of mutual interest or a relevant link.
Stay in touch.
You can call that “nurture relationships.”
You can call that “follow up.”
Why do people do a poor job of staying in touch?
There are various reasons.
Some people aren’t good at, or don’t like networking.
Some people get too consumed in work, family, recreation, etc.
It’s hard to see immediate value from taking time to keep in touch.
For the most part, follow-up is hard.
That’s one reason why I created JibberJobber.
What if you could have a system that made it easier? A system that prompted you to follow-up with someone?
I haven’t talked to Rita for 2 months… the way my brain works, she’s out of sight, out of mind. And if/when I do think about her, I feel guilty for letting too much time go by, and I’m not quite sure what I would say to nurture the relationship… so in this state I just let more time go by. And then years have passed, and all my good intentions are meaningless (except maybe the guilt that I feel).
Then, I lose my job, and I know I want to talk to her, but then I question my motives and don’t reach out because hey, what kind of friend am I if I only reach out when I’m in need?
We’re doing a better job helping people, whether they are in a job search, happily employed, or business owners, or the grandma who wants to have great relationships with her grandkids, stay in touch.
Around the time I was born, and for the next few years until I turned 11 and moved out of the country, there were amazing things happening with the computer industry. Really amazing.
Paul’s book walks you through his early years, including the high school where he met Bill Gates when he was in 8th grade. It walks you through his passions, like chemistry and geeky stuff.
Paul invites you to peak in on the early days of Microsoft, which was a little company poised to take over the world, but back in those days there were just a little software company making some excellent strategic decisions.
As I read through the stories I’m inspired. Many people think all the great companies, and all the wealth, has already been created…. so they need to work for someone else, and they need to look to the government for “wealth” or lifestyle… but Paul’s story is inspiring because we can, today, start our own thing, decide our own fate, risk, and sometimes enjoy the benefits of risking.
Are you looking for hope and inspiration? Check out Paul’s book. I got mine from the library.
Cool factoid: there was a point when Paul and Bill applied to work for a company… Bill used his HANDWRITTEN RESUME and got the job.
Not typed… handwritten. I would love to see a copy of the resume that was a part of the history of one of the wealthiest men around.