Saturday, September 13, 2008

The Seven-Day Job Search

I've found this approach to be one that works best for the most people. 

Cramming the guts of your job search into one week avoids the burnout that comes from a drips-and-drabs job search. 

Also, it maximizes the chances of your getting multiple job offers at the same time. That enables you to pick the best one rather than settle for the job you finally landed after months of job searching.

Day 1: Create your resume using Resumemaker.

Day 2: Create a 10-second pitch that describes the sort of job you're looking for: for example, "a tech-light job that requires a great people and project management skills." 

Create a 60-second pitch, that tells the story of how you've come to be looking for that job now. 

Ask a reference librarian in the business section of a major library to help you develop a list of 20 target employers. Major libraries subscribe to many databases. 

Day 3:  By email or phone, give your 10- and/or 60-second pitch to the 20 people in your professional and personal network most likely to know someone who could hire you for the kind of job you desire. Ask if they know anyone at the target employers you identified in Day 2. If so, ask if they'd make a call of introduction on your behalf or even set up an in-person meeting. If not, ask if they know someone else you should speak with.

Days 4 and 5: Write a form letter to the 20 target employers and any others that the 20 people in your network suggested. Have your letter include:
  •   the name, if any, of the person who referred you to that organization. 
  •  your 10-second pitch 
  • a few highlights of your career that would impress your target employers.  
  • Customize your letter with one paragraph explaining why you selected that employer.  No need to research the employer extensively: 5 to 15 minutes is enough. Just Google it, and then scan the employer's site and perhaps one or two others. Then craft your paragraph.
  • "I'd welcome the opportunity to meet so we could assess if I might be helpful to the organization and/or to get any advice as to where I might otherwise turn. " 
Day 6: Answer any appropriate want ads on your 20 employers' websites or on,, or your state or local government's website. 

Wait two or three days. Then:

Day 7: Phone the target employers you contacted on Day 5 to follow up. Leave voice mail if necessary. Typical message: "I'm the former Dynastar manager who's recently moved here to San Francisco and wrote to you about a possible interview. I'm assuming that, not having heard from you, you're not interested, but I know things can fall between the cracks, so I'm taking the liberty of calling to follow up."

The interviews should start coming in.

A more detailed presentation of the one-week job search is on my site.


Anonymous said...

I shared your 7-day job search plan with a friend. He said, "What if I don't know 20 people?" and "What if the people I know don't know anyone at the companies I'm targeting?" My friend has few friends - and the ones he has are unemployed or working for individuals who also don't know anyone.

Marty Nemko said...

Good questions

Nearly everyone knows 20 people who like them. If necessary, dig down to your haircutter, cleric, old romantic partners, friends of your parents, etc.

Even if they don't know anyone at your 20 target employers, they might know someone you should talk with at another employer.

Andrea Runyan said...

looks like a great idea. I'll give it a try.

job search said...

Your advice seems to be like helpful. But what if the interviews do not come? Because still there's such a possibility. Shall I try calling these potential employers once again?

Marty Nemko said...

Yes, polite persistence pays off often enough to be worth it.

Resume Software said...

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