MirrorMost of the people I meet in my Career Advice activities (recruitment, assessment and outplacement) are somehow flying blind…
This is always very surprising. The generic impression I get 9 times out of 10 after my first meeting is that managers are mostly clueless about what they:
– bring/offer to their employer,
– have to do in order to change jobs/get a new one.

Granted, nobody has to change something major in their career very often, so I don’t expect everybody I meet to be superstars of selection interviews and networking. But I’m very often surprised by how people think about their projects.

– When I ask what they bring into the deal they have signed/will sign with their company, most have troubles telling me what they are useful for, what sets them apart in the way they do it and who really benefits from what they do.
So let’s repeat it here.
Nobody is looking for a job; WE ALL ARE OFFERING OUR SERVICES!
So we need to clearly define:
– WHAT we are useful for,
– WHO we are useful to,
– and HOW we guarantee we deliver on our promise.
When this is decided, we can make it look nice and sexy on our cvs, our Linkedin profiles… only then can we convince in meetings and interviews.

– When I explain during the early stages of my outplacement programs, that we will get what we want through proactive networking, people often answer that “they have no network” or that “they have 139 contacts on Linkedin”. While the first ones are wrong, the second mix the tool with the activity.
These answers imply we will have a lot of work together ;-)
… As networking is key to job changing: it helps reaching out to the external world and approaching companies, deciding which one to target and whether they could be in need of our type of services.
The first step is understanding who can be willing to speak with us, people who know us and that we know: (ex)coworkers, present and past clients and providers, teachers, fellow students, neighbors, even family and friends. We need to count them, find them, sometimes tell them we are sorry we haven’t been that much in touch, but from now on it will change, as we might need to pick their brain one day, since we are in a transition period.

Most of the professional literature on these subjects focuses on the ‘how’: ow to be attractive with your cv, how best to use social media to be visible…
This is quite necessary and useful, but comes later on in the process.
The alpha of the work job changers have to do is different: they have to figure out what cards they are playing with, both within themselves and in their network.
Socrates made it the center of his advices to the people of Athens: KnowThyself.
It is the only way you will make the best out of the situation you are in.

This one is dedicated to Edyta and Charles-Alexis: Good Luck, now!

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