Autumn is football season and as I listen to the TV analysts handicapping each game two words are ubiquitous in their conversation when they discuss what it takes for each of the two teams to win. These words are ‘Game Plan’.
In football, more than in any other sport, regardless of the disparity of talent, a game can be won or lost based on a coaching staff’s game plan designed around their teams’ strengths and the perceived weaknesses of the opposition, with the deciding factor lying in the execution and the coach’s ability to assess and adapt midstream as needed.
This is also true about conducting a job search; however we substitute the phrase Job Search Action Plan for Job Search Game Plan.
For a successful job search you need to define your goals, create a step-by-step Action Plan with defined benchmark and results, and you must commit yourself to execute and adapt the Action Plan to the best of your ability. For executives and professionals at a senior level it is helpful to have coaches and advisors help you throughout the job search process.
Here are 20 basic steps I recommend incorporating into a job search game plan.
1: Define the job/s you’re seeking and the Hire Profile of the ideal candidate employers are seeking to interview and hire.
2: Define, qualify and quantify your qualifications, strengths and weakness based upon the Hire Profile.
3: Identify your relevant achievements and accomplishments based upon the Hire Profile.
4: Investigate how employers for these positions recruit and prefer to receive and process resumes and referrals.
5: Craft a resume(s) with a unique personal brand in the favored style and format based on points 1-4.
6: If you have a DIY resume and LinkedIn profile have it critiqued before (not after) you begin to use it.
7; Prepare all addendum documents you will need for your document portfolio.
8: Craft a generic cover letter that is also adaptable for specific positions.
9: Create a LinkedIn profile with a unique personal brand based on factors 1-4 listed above.
10: Identify existing LinkedIn connections and other people you know who you can reach out to for networking.
11: Set a reconnect and follow up plan for all the existing people you want to network with.
12: Set a goal of acquiring 5-25 new connections each week and define how you will approach them.
13: Identify people who will recommend and endorse you on LinkedIn and how to approach them.
14: Vet your references or have them vetted for you by a trustworthy 3rd party.
15: Identify interview questions you are likely to be asked and prepare brief on point responses.
16: Have people conduct mock Interviews with you as part of the prep process.
17: Research potential employers and how you can get on their radar screens.
18: Make a list of company websites you will check constantly for new postings.
19: Create an Action Plan tracking booklet.
20: Keep focused on working the Action Plan a minimum of 25 to 40 hours each and every week.
These are some of the essentials of a successful Job Search Game Plan, and as in football the desired results are dependent on commitment and the quality of the execution.
As always I am happy to critique resumes and LinkedIn pages and they can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org.