The GetFive Blog

John Urdaneta: Finding a Job and Following a Dream

John Urdaneta had a proven track record of working closely with executives and partners as a consultant with a global professional services firm. A year ago, when he became aware of a new company policy to begin cutting back on the use of outside consultants—specifically in Urdaneta’s department of Information Technology—he realized that he would soon be out of a job. He had heard about GetFive for years, and decided to be proactive in his job search and get as much help as possible in finding another position, even before he had left his consulting job.

“When I attended GetFive, and went through the workshops and resources,” John says, “I started to learn more about the methodology of career planning and job searching, which I found very structured and interesting. Exercises like the Seven Stories Exercise and the Forty-Year Vision gave me confidence and provided guidance in my decisions.”

After completing the assessment exercises, John became more focused on his dream of working in Columbia, South America, and of somehow turning it into a reality. It was something that he was passionate about and there were also real opportunities that he realized he could pursue there. There were many currently emerging markets in Columbia and John would be able to utilize his IT consulting skills to help them develop.

“John dreamed of working in Information Technology in Columbia, South America. He is well on his way!”

John attended weekly small-group sessions at GetFive, where he regularly reported on his job search strategies and learned about developing additional job targets and networking contacts. He continued to think about his long-term goal, while at the same time using GetFive techniques to find another IT position closer to home.

His career coach, Chip Conlin, credits John’s extensive consulting background as part of the reason he was so successful at integrating GetFive’s  methodology into his job search. “At GetFive,” Chip says, “one of the topics we cover is advanced interviewing techniques. We talk about the importance of taking on the role of consultant both in preparing for, and actually going on, the interview. And no one could have done that better than John did.”

John was particularly active in developing networking contacts, including joining various associations. He also took advantage of his remaining time at his consulting position to network with as many key people as possible in the hope of transitioning to a permanent position within the company.

His hard work paid off. On his last day on the job he received a call from someone in the company—as a result of his wide-ranging networking activity—who said that he was being considered for another potential project. The call came in almost as he was out the door for the last time, and he was asked if he was familiar with a particular technology. “Yes, I’m excellent!” he replied, seizing an unexpected opportunity. By the end of the call, he was employed again.

Though he still had a position— first as an applications engineer before being promoted to technical lead— John continued to participate in the GetFive’s weekly group sessions.

Eventually, the company approached John about putting in an application for a permanent position. Once again, he vigorously pursued the opportunity that had been presented to him, formally applying for the job and beginning the interview process. “I used a lot of the techniques I learned at GetFive,” he says, “such as ‘think like a consultant,’ ‘determine what their objections are,’ and ‘follow up with influencing letters.’”

At the end of the process, John successfully negotiated an excellent job offer and began his full-time position with the company in April.

Coming to GetFive, he feels, not only helped him get another job, but helped him focus on his long-term goals and find a fulfilling career path. His coach, Chip, believes that he has the potential to become one of the future leaders of his company. Holding on to his dream, John hopes that his new role will one day take him to those emerging markets in Columbia.

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