Adam Cole (B. Math, I.S.P., ITCP, PMP)
As I start my job search and start cranking up the networking, many of the messages from my good friend Nick Corcodilos come in to play. [For those of you who do not know, Nick is the author of a widely acclaimed book, Ask The Headhunter, and blog of the same name.] Based on my recent personal experience I encourage you to undertake the following:
- Establish a personal email address. Keep this address with you as you travel through your career. I was immediately crippled when I left my previous employer as I had been there so long (6+ years) that all my contacts only knew how to reach me via my work coordinates. In the last few days I have registered the domain adamcole.ca and will now use email@example.com as my permanent email address regardless of where I work. (See Identity Theft at the Office)
- Similarly, do the same with a phone number. I begged and cajoled the local mobile providers and was ultimately given the very commercial sounding number (416) 884-8100. This too will become my permanent professional number.
- Network like mad and network with everybody. I am just starting; however, I know this will be critical to my next job. I don’t yet know where I will end up. Presently I am taking time to survey the landscape. I expect one of my professional contacts will ultimately help lead to my next job, but who knows. Perhaps someone completely unexpected will point me down a prosperous path.
- Be a good person. Besides the benefits to those around you, your good deeds are a currency when you’ll need it. (See Why it Pays to be a Decent Person)
- Establish extracurricular credibility. Friends such as Nick Corcodilos, Steven Ibaraki, Mitch Garvis, and others have established themselves as foremost experts in part through their blogging and writing activities. I plan on blogging and participating in/running a healthcare IT user group – among other things.
- Own your job search/career. Do not rely on a headhunter, friends, family, anyone. Many people will help you but do not count on them finding your next job. That is your responsibility. With every contact made, make a note in your calendar to follow-up. Let your contact know you will be following up on such-and-such a date. This is critical as what is important to you is not necessarily a top priority for your contact. By following up you can ensure many good opportunities do not slip through the cracks.
Hope this helps!