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In the great holiday movie, “It’s a Wonderful Life”, George Bailey gets his wish and sees his community as if he had never been born.  And, of course that wish quickly turns to a nightmare as he finds he is no longer head of his beloved Savings and Loan as it is no more, he is no longer married to his beautiful wife, Mary, now a spinster librarian, and nobody in the community recognizes him; in fact, they tell him he is crazy for thinking he knows them when they have no idea who he is.

Jobseekers have a similar nightmare: you are no longer in an important job, your marriage may be strained, and everyone treats you as if you are invisible, no longer worthy of a returned phone call.  Employers seem to have intentionally designed a process to treat you as a subhuman species to be kept waiting for hours for scheduled interviews and to ignore your emails and calls, not for days, but for weeks.

Nothing excuses the poor treatment of job candidates by almost every employer, but companies are struggling with an overwhelming response, measured in the hundreds, to every job posting. 90% of the responses do not at all meet the posted requirements. And for those that do, there is an unnecessary struggle to determine whether the candidate does in fact possess the required experience.

Another Christmas example: My son would like a tablet for Christmas. Important to him is that it has a lot of memory – 32GB and an expandable memory slot. It is quite easy to learn the number of gigabytes each tablet has and whether it has an expandable memory slot. We narrowed down which tablets to consider in a matter of minutes.

Similarly, companies are looking for equally definitive capabilities:  A head of sales capable of leading the implementation of salesforce.com who has reaped specific business benefits from the implementation.  Or they want a head of manufacturing experienced at implementing SAP and reaping those business benefits. Yet when I review hundreds of resumes, even from people I believe would have those experiences, and though I read and re-read the resume, rarely will I find mention of the specific experience with concomitant business benefit.

So, the first step to reducing the job seeking nightmare is to realize the specific information employers seek i.e., the size of your hard drive, not the vague ability to lead a matrixed team.

Next is to recognize that there are particular companies that, for example, have not yet employed salesforce.com and if you were to lead that implementation for them, would reap great benefit. Identifying target companies with specific needs and being able to suggest your specific value to them is the next important step to eliminating the nightmare.

Last, the way to return to human status rather than subhuman, is to be connecting to the person at the target company who could hire you via your network. LinkedIn makes it incredibly easy to do so. Approaching the hiring manager with the name of someone that they know, even if that person is not someone you know particularly well, raises you to human status. The reason is not because of who you are but because of how that hiring manager feels about the person they know. I have a brother-in-law named Don who is a great matchmaker – he likes to bring parties together for mutual benefit. Anyone who approaches me using his name gets the royal treatment from me. Not because of who they are, but because of my warm feelings for Don. The fact that I may learn later that the individual does not know Don particularly well is immaterial … we are already talking.

These three steps: communicating your hard drive size, targeting companies that may be on the market for your specific experience, and warmly connecting to the decision-makers, are the essential steps of ending your job-seeking nightmare and sharing the happy ending of “It’s a Wonderful Life”.

ExecuJobs ensures these three steps happen!  Every client’s resume, LinkedIn Profile and web presence effectively communicates their specific and unique value; every client has a list of well-selected target companies; and every client gains the network to connect to the potential hiring manager.  Contact ExecuJobs at pr@execujobs.net or 800.767.0691 Extension 302 to end your nightmare!

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