Using Your Network
Next step job search
Having completed a thorough round of Information Interviews, you will hopefully have developed a huge number of contacts and a fairly broad picture of the career areas you’ve been investigating. In the process you have probably:
- Identified some employers for whom, you want to work and who seem likely to have opportunities.
- Identified employers’ requirements for employment in the future - i.e. what experience and skills you must acquire first.
- Decided this career area is not for you and have begun the focusing and research process for a new career or industry area.
For those employers with whom you’d like to work, you will go to your sourcebook and submit your resume to the appropriate person, requesting an interview. The beauty of this scheme is that, because you’ve talked with people in the firm, you can design your resume and portfolio (if applicable) to highlight the skills and experience which best fit the company’s needs. You will also be able to respond more accurately (and with less fear and trepidation) during the job interview. In essence, you have inside information form your “contacts.”
Creating a job for yourself
The same process can be used to create a job where none presently exists. Suppose in your travels doing information interviews, you discover that several companies don’t have someone performing the function you are seeking information about (let’s say marketing design services) – or the function is split between several areas. You can prepare a proposal for a new position and present it to those firms you feel would be most receptive. There are three words of caution in this area. First, you must be thoroughly qualified to initiate and do the job you are proposing since you will probably have to work with very little support or supervision. Second, you should make such a proposal to the highest officer in the company appropriate to the job function you are seeking. Third, if you succeed in creating a job for yourself, you must be very politically attuned to your co-workers since new functions always upset some people for awhile. Finally, it should be noted that creating a job where none existed is, in most instances, a job search technique appropriate to those with considerable work experience.