Over the past few days, I’ve had the pleasure of listening to some of our job seekers talk about their experiences working with their job coaches. I started to see a common thread and it was a simple question: “Why didn’t I think of that?”
They were talking specifically about advice they were getting from their coaches around personal branding and use of social media to make connections and be visible in the hidden job market. This is such an important part of a job search today, since many available jobs are not actually published. In fact, it’s a sobering thought when you realize that maybe as many as 50% of the available jobs out there are not listed on a job board, or in the paper or even at the local workforce agency office. That amounts to approximately 25 million job openings a year that you have to go out and find on your own.
There are many ways to seek out these hidden jobs, and personal branding plays a big part in each of them. But what made this simple question surprising to me was that some were millennials – the generation that is extremely tech savvy and adept with social media. It seems that they don’t use it to connect with people in their field in a meaningful way – people that may have connections to hidden jobs.
These are job seekers that know about technology, with thousands of Twitter and Instagram followers, so I kept coming back to the basic question they shared, “Why didn’t I think of that?”
I think the answer has more to do with “state of mind” than anything else. I recently met with a client of ours who said that job seekers are just “lost and don’t know what to do.” Whether you are just graduating from school and are without a job or have lost your job of 10-20 years, just about everyone feels a little lost. We’re outside of our comfort zone and feeling a bit insecure. For non-tech-savvy job seekers, the problem is worse – some don’t even own a computer.
The good news is that there are many forward thinking organizations that recognize that job seekers need some real guidance. Whether it is the many employers purchasing outplacement for their exiting employees or banks such as Fifth Third Bank, M&T Bank and USAA, who offer it to their mortgage holders, real help is available.
And, the job seekers we see, couldn’t be happier. One Millennial said she felt 10 times more confident now about her ability to find a job than she did before working with her coach.
For a limited time, job seekers can visit us at http://www.nextjob.com/scholarships/recent-grads/ for free access to our jobseekers toolkit where they can create their own job search plan.