June 22, 2015 at 7:30 AM
I was chatting with a professional about their job search the other day and found myself growing concerned. They spoke enthusiastically about a recent networking interview and their follow-up activities.
When I asked them to share other job leads they are cultivating, I was met with dead silence. They are waiting and hoping that this one relationship will produce a job offer…”and besides it’s summer…nothing really happens now.” As I listened to these comments, a little known version of Isaac Newton’s Laws of Physics came to mind:
“An object in motion tends to remain in motion along a straight line unless acted upon by an outside force…like a deck chair and a margarita.”
It’s easy to get sidetracked by summer activities and good weather, especially after most of us slogged our way through a particularly rough winter. However, allowing yourself to lapse into an inert, waiting state is not a good strategy because you are impacting your job search energy. Consider this scene. A recruiter calls back a few weeks later and asks, how are things going? What are you going to say? I am still sitting here where you left me.
Keep Isaac Newton’s wisdom in mind and how staying in motion will impact your:
Market Value. While you might truly think that a specific opportunity is “the one,” job-search monogamy will not help you reach your career goals. You should keep your search “in motion,” and be prepared to talk about other opportunities during your interview. A good recruiter will ask questions such as what opportunities have you explored? which ones were of interest and why? which ones were not? what opportunities have you pursued and said no thank you to and why?
And yes, you can talk about your conversations with competitors if you follow Isaac Newton’s guidance that
“tact is the art of making a point without making an enemy.”
The more rounded and active your job search, the most positively you will be perceived.
Negotiate. You don’t want to be the given, the person recruiters and hiring managers think they don’t need to cultivate or worry about being hired by another company. You don’t want to give the hiring manager the impression that you are not going anywhere soon and that you will accept anything when they finally extend an offer.
Engaging in a constant job search until you have a signed offer letter enables you to advocate and negotiate more effectively. You want to receive the best offer possible and be able to say what other companies have offered as salary, perks and options.
“I keep the subject of my inquiry constantly before me, and wait until the first dawning opens gradually, by little and little, into a full and clear light”–Isaac Newton
Perception. Finally, your job search represents how you perceive and market that most valuable commodity–yourself. Your conversations with the hiring team about your job search and your responses to their interview questions will provide important details about what you will be like to work with.
“If I have ever made any valuable discoveries, it has been due more to patient attention than to any other talent”–Isaac Newton
So create a daily and weekly schedule of reflection, job search and fun activities. Then you can take a few guilt-free moments to enjoy the sun and marvel how the condensation forms on your beverage’s glass.
Just make sure you set a timer or assign someone to hit a gong so you can stay on track! Keep your job search moving forward and give yourself a summer of possibilities!