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Your Job Search Layering Strategy

by Paul Falcone, Vice president of human resources at Time Warner Cable

Paul Falcone

Most people peel back about two layers of the job search onion and leave lots of other layers untouched:

  1. Search the well-known job boards for current openings
  2. Notify their friends and family that they’re looking for full-time work

 

In reality, there are a number of other strategies that you may want to take advantage of, so let’s take a look at some of the critical ones that often get overlooked . . .  

Reference bridging

Former supervisors are great resources for job leads, plus you’ll want to enlist their help as your reference once you hone in on a job offer. So be sure and reach out to your last three or four bosses (preferably covering about the last ten years of your employment history) to catch up, let them know what you’ve been up to since speaking with them last, and ask their permission to provide their name to prospective employers as a reference.  Oh, and don’t forget to send them your resume and ask them to keep you in mind if they hear of any relevant positions that might be a fit. 

Social networking announcements

While you’re at it, ask your former bosses if they’d be willing to recommend you on Linked In.  Not only would that help strengthen your online credentials, but it will also notify everyone in their online networks that you’re available for work!  Two or three online references from former supervisors could easily get out to 500 or so people, and that’s very wise “exponential marketing”!

Boutique Employment Websites

If you’re spending a lot of your time on Lisa Kaye’s GreenLightJobs career site, you not only have excellent taste—You’re also accessing a boutique website that’s dedicated to the media and entertainment industry.  And like all media these days, segmentation and niche marketing is what it’s all about.  There’s nothing wrong with Monster, Career Builder, or any of the other mega job boards out there, but don’t neglect boutique websites that often cater to a more exclusive clientele like:

Bilingual jobs: www.TwoLingos.com

Overseas jobs: www.overseasjobs.com

Telecommuting jobs: www.tjobs.com

 

Any Port in a Storm

And don’t forget that the healthiest thing you could while in career transition is to keep active via temping / consulting or finding new and creative ways of giving back to the community.  If you’re working with a temporary agency, be sure and let your recruiter know that your first preference is to pursue “temp to hire” transitional roles where a company may want to “try before it buys” a candidate for a full-time position.  Employers have this option when unemployment rates are high (like now), and the entertainment industry uses this strategy fairly aggressively as a whole.

If you’re looking for contract gigs and projects for consultants, freelancers, or gurus (subject matter experts), try www.slevinz.comto see if anything strikes your fancy. And if you continue to count your blessings despite your temporary career transition status, you’re destined to live a very happy life!  Try www.taprootfoundation.orgto learn more about pro bono opportunities where you could help nonprofit organizations grow and develop into our community’s future leaders.  There’s no pay for your work, but you’ll be doing a wonderful deed to help those who need you most, and you can never go wrong with that approach to life. Besides, you’ll work with executives and professionals just like yourself, and that’s a great way to build your network the easy way.

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Paul Falcone is an HR executive and former contingency recruiter who's held senior-level positions with Nickelodeon, Paramount Pictures, and Time Warner. He is the author of several best-selling books, including├âé├é┬á96 Great Interview Questions to Ask Before You Hire, one of the Society for Human Resource Management's "Great 8 of 2011" bestsellers.