Your Career, Your Journey.
Let a Recruiter be Your Tour Guide.
Face it. It’s highly unlikely that your dream job is going to just fall in your lap one of these days. It takes a great deal of focus, hard work, and diligence to land the job you really want.
They say that “Life is a journey, not a destination.” Well, I think the same holds true in our careers.
Keep this in mind when you start your search. If you haven’t done so already, I recommend you take some time define what you are looking for—what types of positions are you interested in and qualified for? What kinds of organizations you’d like to work for?
As Steven Covey suggests in The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, you will be more productive and therefore, more likely to succeed, when you “begin with the end in mind.”
Once you’ve defined what you’re looking for, start engaging all the tools and resources available to assist you in your search—this includes recruiters. Aligning yourself with the right recruiter can help you find and secure your ideal position faster. The key to building a lasting and successful relationship with a recruiter, like with other relationships, requires effective communication and meaningful interactions.
Here are some tips on engaging recruiters in your job search:
- Refrain from applying to all positions a recruiter has posted. This implies that you are looking for any job, not necessarily for positions you have the skills for and are passionate about.
- In addition to skill requirements, recruiters have to assess a candidate’s fit given a particular position and organization. Providing recruiters with specific, relevant past experiences can provide them with helpful insight about you and how well you fit the opportunity and may help you stand out as a prospective candidate. Sometimes including 4-5 bullet points in the body of an email with your attached resume is all it takes to tip the scales in your favor.
- Be professional. Recruiters frequently view their interaction with you as a reflection of how you will present yourself to one of their clients. If you are unprofessional, you may inadvertently diminish the value of your hard-earned skills and experience.
- No surprises-just be honest. Recruiters could be asked to clarify something or speak to a client on your behalf without notice, so it’s imperative that you are both on the same page regarding a specific job opportunity. They also should know any reasons behind leaving previous employment or for any gaps in your resume.
- Don’t let all of the time you’ve invested with a recruiter go to waste just because you end up finding a position on your own or by some other means. You should always let your recruiter know if your situation changes and check in with them from time to time. This way, they’ll be ready to assist you how and when you need them in the future.
Remember, recruiters can add a lot of value to your job search but only if you define the course you want for your career. The better you’re able to articulate your experience and career aspirations, the better able a recruiter can help you along on that journey.
Meghan Breen - follow me on Twitter @meghanbreen1