Timing is Everything

You know that old saying “The early bird gets the worm…” Well in many cases, it is the early bird who gets the job. There are several occasions where it can pay to be the early bird. Below are some examples of occasions where a person can win or lose a job offer depending on how quickly they respond:

1)Resume Submissions- The first resumes that are submitted are often the people who get hired. This is especially true of positions that are in saturated markets where there are a lot of applicants. Always check your job boards such as Indeed.com, first thing every morning and apply right away to any jobs that are a fit. If you take an extra day or two to put together a resume, the position could already be filled or the client could tell us to hold off on sending additional resumes. 
2) References-When you get into the interview process, it is important to have your references ready to go and aware that they will be called. Taking even an extra day to get your references together can be the difference between those who get hired and those who do not. 
3) Phone calls-At least once or twice a week I will have a job seeker call me 20 minutes too late regarding a position that I just filled. The people who answer their calls and emails first are the ones who we give top priority to and often get hired faster.
4) Interview times-Always book your interview sooner rather than later. I occasionally have people who opt to push their interview back a few days or a week. There have been many instances where the position gets filled in the first few interviews and then the person who pushed their interview back a few days doesn’t even have a chance to come in and meet the prospective employer.
5) Background forms, including pay stubs-There have been instances where someone has taken too long to fill out a background form, application and/or get the appropriate employer verification such as a pay stub and in that time, the company identifies someone who they would rather hire.
Remember, it is always better to be first than last.

10 ways to make yourself indispensable in the Workplace

1) Whoever you work for, make their life easier
2) Conduct yourself with impeccable integrity which includes to do what is asked of you, but more importantly, do all of the things you know you should do, but were not asked to do additionally
3) Listen to what is being asked of you/Answer the question that is being asked of you
4) ALWAYS be reliable and on time
5) Be the type of person who your boss could trust to run things while they are out of the office
6) ALWAYS be the one that others go to for help and be helpful at all times
7) Anticipate the needs of your boss/Take initiative
8) Know your product, know your client, and know your services better then everyone else in your office
9) Always be learning-this includes taking continuing education classes and keeping up with the latest trends by reading articles, journals and books in your industry
10) ALWAYS display a pleasant attitude and be the type of person that others want to be around

How referable are you?

Are you someone that others like to be around? Do you have a pleasing personality? Are you perceived by others as being professional and positive? Are you the type of person who gives back and contributes to others? Are you adding value to other people’s lives?

These are just a few questions you can begin to ask yourself to find out if you are someone others are likely to refer. Why is being someone who is referable important? People are not going to go out of their way to recommend you to a potential employer if you are not someone that they would want to do business with. The same goes for potential employers. When you go in for an initial interview, it is up to the person who is screening you to decide whether or not YOU will make THEM look good to their higher ups. 

This does not mean that finding a job is a popularity contest. It simply means that the more memorable you are (in a good way!), and the more people find you to be someone they would want to spend time with/do business with, the more likely you will it is that you will be recommended by that person. Here is a perfect example a person who is unlikely to have a high referability value:

Job Seeker Candidate A: “Here is my business card. I need a job ASAP and want you to recommend me to everyone you know. Things really suck right now. I was fired from my old job because my boss was a jerk who had it out for me and it was totally unfair that I was let go. I never get what I want and I don’t even know why I bother coming to these events.”

I wish this example were made up, but unfortunately I have seen some variation of this example in a variety networking situations. From an outsider perspective, it is easy to see why Candidate A would be unlikely to be recommended by anyone, let alone considered for a job by a potential employer. Below is another example of a job seeker in the exact same situation, but who holds an entirely different perspective:

Job Seeker Candidate B: “How are you? How is your job search coming? I am so glad to be here. It is wonderful to get out and be around people who are so upbeat and have such a great attitude about finding a new job. Is there anything I can do to be a resource for you in your job search? I would love it if we could connect on Linkedin and stay in touch. Could I get your information? Perhaps we could even grab a coffee to discuss our respective job searches and to see how we can help one another find our next job. I really look forward to getting to know you better.”

It is obvious to see that Candidate B would be much more likely to be recommended to a potential employer, and would have a much higher referability value overall. Sometimes job seekers do not even realize they are being negative, and they wind up sabotaging themselves and their job search unintentionally. If this is the case for you, it is never too late to start anew. Below are 3 tips to becoming more referable both in a networking situation and in an interview:

1) Be positive-What is done is done. The past should not hold you back from what is possible in the future. Focus on what you are now creating.

2) Make it about other people-Always offer to be a resource for another person. The same goes with potential employers. Do not ask “Do you have a job for me?” Instead offer resources and solutions that will help the employer with their problem or need.

3) Be memorable-Spend some time crafting a strong “Tell me about yourself statement.” This will help you to stand out from the millions of other job seekers who are fighting for the same job that you want.

If you want to see how referable you are, check out www.naymz.com. This is an interesting Social Networking website which takes referability to a whole new level. You are given a reputation score based on what people think of you in your network. It can be a valuable tool to see what your referability value is. If you do come to discover that you are not as referable as you had hoped, do not be discouraged. You can always increase your referability value, just remember to be positive, be a resource, and be memorable!

You can see my reputation network on Naymz at: 

http://www.naymz.com/jennifer_hill_andes_2720144