Testing, testing… is this thing live? Great.
So. Sorry if I’ve been a bad, bad blogger. Not posting every week. Heck, not even posting every month.
But, you know….
Talking out loud. Sometimes to other people.
All that said: sometimes, something has to be said. This is one of those times.
Most of the people who read this thing (I assume) are my relatives, or my friends, and generally get to it by clicking in the wrong link in their news feed. So, a bunch of you know our mutual friend, Senor Jeff Clark. Jeff’s always been an innovator when it comes to getting a job, not to mention generally innovative in most aspects of his life. He’s just good at that – and, he’s a good guy. I’d hate him, but, well, he’s a good guy. Dammit.
Jeff took an approach to getting a job recently that you need to know about – and, you need to think about replicating.
He applied to the job. By applied, I mean it in the way Webster’s Dictionary defines it: applying general principles to solve definite problems. Jeff had a problem. He was in Chicago. He wanted a job back in Boston. And, he wanted that job to be somewhere he found interesting. To top it off, Jeff was an avid Zipcar user and proponent, and they were looking for a Web Developer.
Here’s the nut of the problem: he wanted that job. So did a ton of other people. Competition would be fierce, and he was handicapped by not being local to a market chock full of great engineers.
Here’s the general principle: the only way to get a job you want, is to get, and hold, that company’s attention. Then, prove you’re the right fit for the job. That matters….
Jeff’s approach was what makes his use of the general principle unique – he customized.
That’s right: he actually took the time to market himself to the company he wanted to work for.
I know, weird, right? I mean, isn’t it easier to sit there for weeks and months and months spamming your generic resume and cover letter out to random job openings?
Of course it isn’t. It’s painful for you, and no more fun for the company receiving the resume.
So. Jeff made a site, appropriately called “You Should Hire Jeff Clark”, with Zipcar’s name in the URL. He wrote them, basically, a love letter. About how great they were, and – because you need to sell a bit – how great he was for them. A bit cheeky, but with a point: he would be an asset.
Hey there. I’m Jeff.
I’m a web developer + designer. I really like making websites and I heart Zipcar.
I think we should talk.
Before he sent Zipcar the URL (as opposed to a resume) he shot a couple of us the URL to check out for feedback, and general hilarity. He didn’t publish it, as he was still fine tuning – but, as fate would have it, the site was unlocked briefly.
Zipcar saw it.
Zipcar called him.
Zipcar love it.
Zipcar hired him.
I know. “But, I’m an accountant, I can’t create a website.” Okay, first off, I get that. Chances are, a CFO might not be blown away by a cheeky web site with a slightly snarky hipster edge to it (I know Jeff: you don’t wear skinny jeans, or live in Brighton or Allston – anymore – but, you get the point…). I’m betting you could put together a (free, easy, and I mean easy) site using WordPress, where you talk a bit about your achievements around revenue recognition, with a few quotes from your references, and addressed directly to that CFO’s company. It’s not rocket science.
It’s just personal. It’s refreshing. It gets attention (the good kind). It may well get you the job.