Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to engage in extensive reconnaissance work.
Sleuth out opportunities that match your education and skill set.
Browse company websites and find 10 job postings of interest to you. Print out the job postings and highlight repeated terms and phrases, paying particular attention to the terms following the words “required,” “must have,” or “preferred.”
Analyze the employer’s job posting from the ground up.
If an employer states that applicants must have a specific skill set, you can be certain it is required. However, think of preferred skills as the employer's wish list. The employer would like the applicant to have the desired skills, but they are not required.
Create a two-column chart.
In the rows of the left column, list all of the required items followed by all of the preferred items. In the right column, describe how you match the employer’s requirements and preferences. If you meet 100% of the employer's requirements and meet 50% of the employer’s desired skills contained in the job posting, then you are probably a strong contender for the job. Use this intel to write a stellar cover letter.
If your skills are not an exact match, write about your transferable skills. For example, a stay-at-home parent seeking a job as a staff accountant might mention how she served as treasurer of the parent/teacher association or provided bookkeeping services from home. A schoolteacher transitioning to a position in corporate communications would want to emphasize his outstanding writing and presentation skills. A staff nurse transitioning to a nursing leadership role would want to convey her managerial strengths.
To land a great job in weeks instead of months:
Happy job hunting!
Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to increase your activity on LinkedIn and track your progress. For this exercise, let’s assume that you already have an awesome LinkedIn profile. If you don’t, the leaders at Mission Possible headquarters highly recommend the 11th edition of Brenda Bernstein’s book How to Write a KILLER LinkedIn Profile... And 18 Mistakes to Avoid that was released in paperback on October 21, 2015.
Three Easy Steps to Track Your LinkedIn Progress
First, create an Excel spreadsheet named “Professional Networking Stats” to track your online networking activity.
Second, create a section header called LinkedIn, with rows to track the number of weekly:
Third, enter data for an entire month. Add your weekly totals and report a monthly recap.
If you are active on other industry-specific professional networking sites, create a new section header on the same spreadsheet to track activity on that particular site.
Pablo Picasso said, “Action is the foundational key to all success.” Remember the business management axiom, “You can’t manage what you don’t measure” rings true, even in your job search. Track your progress for a month and measure your improved levels of professional networking online. You’ll be amazed at how tracking your stats can motivate you to accomplish your personal best.
PS: Mission Possible Headquarters Job Seeker's Hotline 912-656-6857
is open Monday - Thursday from 10 am - 5 pm Eastern
Sharla Taylor's Blog
Sharla is a mulit-certified career coach, executive resume writer, job search strategist, networking consultant, and published author. Through her company, Written by a Pro, Sharla has been helping executives and mid-career professionals land great jobs with better compensation and work-life balance for more than 20 years.
She approaches her business from a Christian perspective. Her favorite Scripture is Matthew 19:26 "with God all things are possible" and this Bible verse is the inspiration for the Mission Possible Career Coaching Program.
Click here to explore some free resources for mid-career and executive job seekers and book your free, 20-minute consultation with Sharla Taylor.
WRITTEN BY A PRO
Mon. - Thurs. by appt. only
Austin Farmer, graphic artist, is a graduate of Savannah College of Art and Design where he majored in Industrial Design and minored in Architecture. Austin creates marketing materials for businesses and uses his artistic and musical talents to enhance the worship service at Compassion Church. He also draws exquisite portraits and creates amazing animations! Austin's favorite Scripture passage is Isaiah 12:2.