There is one clear path to getting most jobs. That path is almost never taken. At least not anymore.
“Eighty percent of available jobs are never advertised, and over half of all employees get their jobs through networking, according to BH Careers International.”
I don’t know what’s even happening anymore. Thankfully, I do know what happened to me; I know what works and what will continue to work.
1. Give Ideas.
It’s free to think. Once you get good at it, it will be your most valuable asset. Thinking in selfish ways, won’t help anyone. A couple years ago I gave someone a ton of ideas for marketing their web series. They wanted to do more work with me after that. Now I give people ideas all the time. It makes my brain better. It makes me think of helping others instead of having whiny self-pointing thoughts. It’s good; do it.
I was in the office. Potential client was telling a story. I was interested. Was it interesting? I don’t remember, but I was interested and that’s the most important thing. I related something he said to my life, adding to his story. This is Conversation 101. It’s hard to have the balls to be authentic, to be a human. Once you get over yourself and get past the hardships of hearing “no,” then it actually becomes kind of easy.
3. Give a book.
Potential client was interested in something, and I knew about this interest. So what did I do? I bought a book for him; not too well known, but still applicable to the subject. And it doesn’t even have to be a book that you get them. It could be a small present — anything, really. It’s just a nice gesture for people who won’t hire you. I swear, people are amazed when anything thoughtful is done for them; be the person with a soul.
4. Share your work.
You don’t know what your next job or who your next boss will be. Share your work. Share what you’re learning. Don’t make a dishonest personal brand that ruins Facebook for everyone. Be honest, be interested, be prolific – and share.
5. Be willing to take the shitty job.
Just be there. A foot in the door is an opportunity to learn. You can peek around and see if this place is really for you. You can observe the winners, see how they behave. You can observe the slackers too. You can make friends — people like hiring friends. And you have a better vantage point to start seeing the pain-points. Figure out what needs to be done and start offering up ways to fix it.
Make a commitment. No list is going to replace this simple rule. Commit and everything will follow. Flail in the direction you want to head and you will slowly find yourself closer and closer to where you want to be. Maybe you’ll find that you need to commit in a different direction. Just move. Try and fail. The above worked for me, but it won’t work every time. Your life is bigger than a list. More complicated. You know what you need to do. So do it.