Get Your Group On

The article is titled “How to Find a Job on LinkedIn.”  Yeah, right.  It’s from Freelancer Community, the Australian gig posting site.

Who finds jobs through LinkedIn?  I’ve had scores of people look at my LinkedIn page, but never landed a job from it.  Still, the article had some excellent tips that I want to share with you now.

Tip #1: Box Yourself Up

Good advice.  Managers see a lot of resumes.  And your resume should read easily, like a package description, something you might find on Metropolitan Museum of Art insert on an ivory miniature relief of the nativity scene you just bought.  It should be sold and to the point.  Don’t write a resume like a journalist.  Be concise, yes; be comprehensive, of course.  Just don’t be wordy.  Think product description. You can fill out the details in an interview.

You might have a list of skills that run off the page, but if an employer reads your profile and can’t tell what you actually want to do, they’re not going to get in touch.

So hit them up front. Leave no doubt as to what kind of job you’re looking for.

We’ve all read the buzzwords. ‘Multi-skilled problem solver.’ ‘Good leadership qualities; excellent time management.’ ‘Works well alone, or as part of a team.’

…???

These generic terms say nothing about what you want, or what you’re actually qualified for. Be specific. Put yourself in a box for a while – you can always break out of it later.

Here’s an example of what I mean.  The product below is titled The Medici Walking Horse Sculpture by Giambologna.

medici Walking Horse Sculpture 06060503_01_l

Now read the description:

The Museum’s sculpture is based on a model by Giovanni Bologna, called Giambologna (Netherlandish, ca. 1529–1608) that was probably cast in the workshop of sculptor Giovanni Francesco Susini (Italian, ca. 1575–1653). Giambologna’s models were created for the equestrian statue of Grand Duke Cosimo I de’ Medici in the Piazza della Signoria in Florence, which was finished in 1594.

Produced in cooperation with the Princely Collections of Liechtenstein.

Obviously you’re not a museum piece, but you want your resume package to read like it is something to be coveted.

Tip #2: Be on the Market

Add words to your LinkedIn headline to let recruiters know you’re available right now. ‘Seeking new challenge’, or the acronym ISO (In Search Of) are indicators that either you’re currently not working, or you’re actively looking to change your current situation.

This is good advice.

Tip #3:  Do Not Be Camera Shy

Easier said that done.  But do you must.

LinkedIn provides space for a profile photo. Use it! It gives you the chance to show yourself as you want to be seen – and showing potential employers your face forms a connection in the way a blank space does not. It doesn’t have to be a professional picture, but it should show you in a good light.

Leaving the space blank is the worst decision. It implies a lack of care, laziness, or a person too timid to present themselves to the world. None of these create a good impression.

Keep reading . . . 

“. . . measuring does not apply to writing, other than direct-response copywriting.”

Dr. Gary North has an article at his site, titled “Prove You Are Better Than All the Job Applicants in Two Steps” that is about positioning yourself stronger as the coming recession increases the number of qualified applicants exponentially.  He points to speaking and writing.  Speaking is the real skill.  Writing, well, every junior editor who edits mocking commentary in his head a la Beevis & Butthead fashions himself a writer. But it was actually a comment that North made in one of his forum posts that nailed it.  IT came upon a question from a member about how to measure one’s writing.  Dr. North wrote “. . . measuring does not apply to writing, other than direct-response copywriting.” That’s exactly it.

That’s exactly it.

In high school, kids are taught to write essays–expository, persuasive, narrative, poetry, book reviews, short stories at best.  But these exercises have only for their audience their teacher, who to many I am sure is either tiring, a clown, or a task manager.  Not the ideal audience.  And that’s what is required for anyone to get inspired and create decent work.

Direct marketing suddenly gets the boys involved, boys are fired by the prospect of making a profit and turning a dollar with their talents.

The forum member recommended the SMART approach, fashioned by Michael Hyatt, to measuring one’s writing.  SMART is the acronym for 1) Specific, 2) Measured, 3) Actionable, 4) Realistic, and 5) Time-constrained.  This is too close to what Michael Masterson taught as well; in fact, this is the standard formula for goal setting, not so much for measuring one’s writing abilities. The best way to do that is to write and then work to publish, either through Kindle or sell your writing through direct marketing clients.

To produce a book or write copy or sell ads, review the insights of these gentlemen here: Bill Myers, Bob Bly, or AWAI.

 

After 10 Years on the Job, What Next?

In answer to the question of what one should do after 10 years in your field, leave or find ways to advance, Dr. North writes this:

Once you’ve hit the 7-10 year mark in your field, should you keep on getting those hours of experience for master status or should you switch to another field touching yours and start that experience clock over?”

If you quit 100%, you will get rusty. The new field should be complementary to your main field. Alternative: become a consultant. You will then be forced to learn marketing. Or become a writer/consultant. Inside the firm, become a teacher.

“On the other side of the table, if you hire for a job that needs a journeyman but not a master, would you rather offer a master a journeyman salary assuming an excess of masters or look only for journeyman candidates?”

Go for the journeyman. You may get a hot shot. The master has seen his day. But if the master could be a teacher or mentor, hire the master at a wage in between. A good teacher is worth paying for. He will get journeymen up to speed.