If you're out there looking for a job right now, how are you doing? What is the health of your job search process? It might seem like an odd question — the search is just the search, right? Wrong. There's a way to assess your job search process, to take its pulse, and see if you're on track to land your next big job. And, it is not the amount of time that you have been searching for a job. That is in fact a very poor indicator. Rather, it's all about understanding the stages of each particular job opportunity.
THE ARC OF YOUR JOB SEARCH
As your job search matures, it is true that you are spending your time differently. In the early days of your search, there should be an emphasis on campaign preparation as well as meeting with people you know have information about your job targets. You should be trying out your pitch, getting feedback and perfecting it. You should be staying in touch with key contacts and of course, developing new ones.
As your search hits full stride, your focus should be on getting meetings and being well received by the right people at the right level and at the right organizations. Of course, you want to be staying in touch with key contacts and still be generating “new” opportunities, or what we call Stage 1 opportunities.
In the latter part of your job search, you will be laser focused on having 6 to 10 “real” job opportunities in play at what we call the Stage 3 level. Some of these Stage 3 opportunities will turn into offers. Others will fall away through no fault of yours. Ultimately, you are aiming for a great offer, perhaps two. Offers beget other offers.
3 STAGES OF A JOB OPPORTUNITY
As we said above, just moving out of the early part of your job search into the mid or latter stages is not necessarily a good indicator of how close you are to landing a great new job. This is where the 3 Stages of a Job Opportunity come into play. The 3 stages of a job opportunity are used to assess how close you are to a job offer. Just because you are pursuing a large number of opportunities doesn’t necessarily mean that an offer is forthcoming anytime soon. To receive an offer, certain conditions must be met. In GetFive’s lexicon, a healthy job search is all about moving your opportunities along from Stage 1 to Stage 2 and ultimately Stage 3. As the number of Stage 2 and 3 opportunities in your opportunity set grows, your chances of receiving offers grow exponentially.
The “Stage” of each Job Opportunity is characterized by who you are in touch with and the position status. Here's an in-depth look at the 3 Stages:
STAGE 1 JOB OPPORTUNITY
You're in touch with: A person at a company that is not the targeted hiring manager.
Position status: Whether or not the position is open, this is still Stage 1 because you are not in touch with hiring manager.
STAGE 2 JOB OPPORTUNITY
You're in touch with: “The right person” (The targeted hiring manager or key influencer)
Position status: The targeted position is not currently open.
STAGE 3 JOB OPPORTUNITY
You're in touch with: “The right person” (The targeted hiring manager)
Position status: The targeted position is open.
Thus, a strong barometer.
The health of your job search is how many job opportunities you've successfully moved from Stage 1 to Stages 2 and 3. Remember to keep a laser focus on driving 6 to 10 job opportunities into Stage 3.
Track your opportunities and be realistic about the work you need to do to position yourself for that offer. Your job right now is finding a job, so make sure you are investing the time required into your job search.
Questions? Contact us. We'll be happy to work with you.