I was talking to a prospective coachee who shared she emailed a friend that works at one of her target companies, and got no response. Avoidance and ghosting are common, especially when you're unemployed. It's sad, especially when it's coming from people you know. Sometimes people are just too busy (it's not personal!). Others simply don't want to inconvenience themselves (usually because they have never been unemployed). This is also common behavior by HR, recruiters and hiring managers, even after you've had a great discussion with them about how you can contribute to a role. If this is happening to you, don't lose faith... try these three things instead: 1- Pay attention to your contact's social media updates. Like, comment and share to help them showcase their expertise and accomplishments. In your next email, tell them about one of their helpful posts or congratulate them for their achievement. 2- Set up Google alerts for all your target companies. That way, you’ll know whenever there’s news about your contact's or hiring manager's business. Besides congratulating them, you can use the news to craft an impact email. For an impact letter template, see #4 in my cheat sheet "How to Land a Great Marketing Job: Seven Reasons Why Your Job Search is not Working and What To Do Instead" . 3- Share a relevant slice of your expertise. When emailing to follow-up, provide a tip, link to a helpful article, or share another company's success story. Unless it's an impact email, your follow-up message does not need to request a meeting or any other kind of response. And if you need a response at some point, then email the person three times, making no request in the first two emails. How soon you should follow up depends on the nature of your interaction. If you're following up on a open position that you were screened for, you'd send an email after three days, then after a week, then after two weeks. But for a networking contact, the frequency might be two weeks, one month and three months. A friend who was being ghosted after being told she would get an offer, tried the 3rd approach. She emailed the hiring manager saying, "Saw this article and thought about you" without a request. The hiring manager responded right away apologizing for the delay and she had an offer a few days later. I also liked this follow up message from a candidate that I had promised to talk to once she sent me her resume. I had not responded in a week. She wrote, "How are you today? So I understand you are probably super super busy but I just wanted to loop back around regarding coffee or a phone call whenever your schedule allows." I replied right away. Found these tips useful? Put these ideas into action within 24 hours, and click here to comment on this post on LinkedIn . Let me know what worked, didn't work or questions that came up as you applied them.
Rather than wishing you a Happy New Year, I've been racking my brain on how to actually help you make it happy. So, I studied the Top 10 New Year's resolutions for success and happiness , and reflected about what I learned in 2018 that might provide ideas for you to make progress on whatever your goals may be for 2019. Last year my most meaningful personal breakthrough came from the " Power of Two ", a workbook with very specific exercises to improve communication in marriage. I liked its catalog of simple, prescriptive techniques so much, that I adapted them to teach survivors of human trafficking at Restore NYC how to manage work-related conflicts. That workbook also reminded me I've learned that to succeed at achieving important life goals, I must write them down and work a system to tackle them with a partner. So, here are the top New Year's resolutions with the systems that I've liked the most, and my thoughts on how to partner up for success. It's my own blueprint for an amazing 2019, with resources I hope can also help you persevere on achieving your resolutions. 1- Eat healthier/lose weight/drink less alcohol/quit smoking: Watch Dr. Judson Brewer's TED Talk "A simple way to break a bad habit" . For weight loss/eating/alcohol, get his Eat Right Now mindful eating app with a $24.99 month-to-month subscription. You can write about your journey in the app to get support from a virtual community, plus they have weekly calls. I lost 1-2 pounds a week when I used it. He has another app to quit smoking. 2- Exercise: I gain momentum by carving out just 15 minutes of exercise from my busy day. My favorite resource for this is Patry Jordan's GymVirtual YouTube Channel (exercises are easy to follow if you do not speak Spanish). The joy of achieving this goal, even in a small way, usually leads me to exercise longer or at least feel less guilt. I need to recontact my next door neighbor so we can get back to our exercise routine. 3- Learn a new skill or hobby: A Restore assistant facilitator who experienced trauma-related memory loss, requiring she relearn how to read and write in her native language, has gotten to the intermediate level of English fluency in three years by using Duolingo every night. She inspired me to learn Mandarin and told me the app allows you to set up peer competitions to stay accountable to your learning routine. For now, I will continue practice my basic and growing vocabulary with the Chinese women we serve at Restore. 4- Read more/spend more time with family and friends: Check out the "Get Momentum" workbook by Jodi and Jason Womack. Their 30/30 rule about spending 30 minutes a day on a goal that you want to achieve in 30 days has allowed me to persevere on building my private job search coaching business while working long hours to develop Restore's Economic Empowerment Program. Last year they offered a free 5-Day Challenge (it's now $297 but you have to wait until they open it for registration), where Jodi Womack serves as your accountability coach to schedule and complete a 30/30 work session. 5- Find another job: If you are a bicultural professional who wants to land a great marketing job, download my cheat sheet: "Seven Reasons Why Your Job Search Isn't Working and What to Do Instead" . Plus, join a group for job seekers to stay motivated in the face of ghosting or rejection. In Manhattan, you can get free career coaching at The Science, Industry and Business Library (SIBL) and at monthly Fifth Presbyterian Church events, such as the 1-1 resume critique on Feb 19, 2019 . For those in Chicagoland, I've heard the Community Career Center in Naperville is a great resource. If you're curious about the benefit of paying for job search coaching, read this article I wrote for FairyGodBoss . 6- Spirituality/relationship with God: Learning to abide, or choosing to remain connected to the life of Christ, has been an anchor during my ups and downs since 2005. Rich Case, my mentor in that journey, teaches how anyone can abide in his "Discerning God's Will" and "Adversity" books . I'm looking forward to the online videos and study guides on this topic that he is launching in early 2019. For those of you with a different view of spirituality, there's SoundTrue.com , where I got the helpful and free Mindfulness Daily at Work lessons . 7- Save more/spend less/invest savings: I'm looking for recommendations on this one, where I can balance enjoying life with saving and investing. Some people rave about Dave Ramsey, and I've seen subway ads about an app that allows you to invest $5 at a time, but I have not focused as much on this area of my life. It's time to change that! May all our plans and dreams come to pass in 2019! Please click here to comment on this post on LinkedIn , and let me know about other resources you love, ways you leverage partners, or questions that came up after you tried the ideas on this list.
Countless people feel hopeless about networking because not even their own sister, cousin, or friend will help them connect with people at their target companies. Unfortunately, those who know you well in the social realm feel uncomfortable vouching for you professionally because they have never worked with you. Especially if what they know about your work life or job search revolves around how miserable you feel. It is also hard for family and friends to help because they do not really understand what you do for a living, and do not think they have contacts in your industry. Thus, they can rarely respond immediately to requests such as "Let me know if you hear of any open positions in marketing" or "Can you think of any marketing contacts you could put me in touch with?" Before you start harboring resentment because of their lack of support, try this approach: Connect with them on LinkedIn. It will allow you to identify specific people they know at your target companies. Share articles, make insightful comments and write posts regularly, to shape their perceptions about your professional ability. Share your lows with other job seekers. It is very important for you to have safe people to talk to about your struggles in the process. Instead of discussing your lows with your family and friends, join a local job search support group (church, library, community career center, meetup ), or engage an alumni or private career coach. Tell them about what excites you in your field. Now that you can cry on another job seeker's shoulder, focus on the positives. Share about what you love about work or an accomplishment that you are proud about, and what you would like to contribute to your next employer. Learn new things while you find a new role, as it can spark interesting conversation with them that showcases your expertise. Ask how you can help them professionally. Explain you are building your network as part of the job search process, and will keep their needs in mind. Especially if you have been showing them how you can add value, you can later ask them to share a helpful article with one of their contacts, or show them an email you want to send and confirm that you have their contact's correct email address. Found this tip useful? Put these ideas into action within 24 hours, and click here to comment on this post on LinkedIn . Let me know what worked, what didn't work or questions that came up as you applied the ideas.