Thursday, August 23, 2012

Job search tip of the day: Cold call employers

I know.  I just heard the mass grown from the thousands reading this!:-)

In all seriousness this is the hardest thing to convince job seekers to do, but can be one of the most important!  There are several reasons to cold call an employer:

1. To obtain information about:
  • Unadvertised openings
  • Contact names and/or preferences
  • Hiring practices in general
  • Unadvertised internship or community group opportunities
  • Hiring trends - types of positions, how often they hire, when they might hire next
  • Industry trends
2. To cultivate a relationship, start with the receptionist!  In fact, you can sometimes gain a lot of information from the automated message and/or phone tree announcement.  You might go so far as to seek out a mentor with a company near you that is in an industry for which you would like to work.

3. To hone your communication skills and increase your self confidence in interacting with others in a professional way.  We all get a little lax when we are at home speaking only with friends and loved ones who already know us and our situation.  Speaking with employers will keep you sharp and comfortable talking with "strangers."

It is well worth the time and effort to take this step in your job search, but how do you get started?

  • Make a list of employers you would like to contact
  • Generate a script or at least a goal of your conversation
  • Obtain contact information for each
  • Research each for as much information as you can gather - cold calls sometimes result in impromptu interviews!
  • Plan a block of time to make the calls
  • Just do it! 

1 hour ago
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