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Job Search is Common Sense, Not a Secret Process

Job Search is Common Sense, Not a Secret Process
Guest Post By: Don D. Boyer, Ph. D.

Marketing gurus advertising ‘secrets’ are selling to fears they are putting in your mind. You are asking yourself, ‘what do they know that I don’t that I simply must know to succeed?’ There are no ‘secrets’ to the process of job search. The word ‘secret’ implies something known only to the marketer. These are psychological words used to scare you into buying.

The job-hunting procedure is still generically the same from the 20th to the 21st Century. Because many job seekers are ‘amateurs,’ they may not know the protocols as professional career searchers. The difference is in the 21st Century, most job applications and resume submissions are done online.  

Create a Marketing Tool

You create a marketing tool – your resume. You develop a plan – answering help wanted ads and uploading resumes online, attending job fairs, or delivering a resume personally.  You answer questions in a telephonic interview and perhaps are lucky to get an invite for a face-to-face interview with a hiring manager. They compare candidates and determine which one offers the most ‘bang for the buck’ for the salary range budgeted. The following steps are the basics.

Ensure your resume is word processed in digital form. Be prepared to deliver it electronically from your phone, uploaded to an online recruiting site, or to hand-deliver a hard copy. If you are a poor writer, get a professional to write or grammar-check the text first. It is no longer critical to keep the resume to two pages or less in the 21st Century, because they are stored online; but don’t go overboard and write 20 pages, either.

Dress for Success

Dress for success. Dressing in droopy pants or a torn jeans and tee-shirt to hand-deliver a resume is stupid. That young lady behind the register might be the owner’s daughter, who will relay to mama you aren’t fit to be in the store shopping, much less applying for a job. Or you may pass the hiring manager leaving as you walk into the establishment.  They will remember someone dressed sharply and ready to do business with their clientele.

Follow Up

Follow up in 2-3 days, and politely ask about the any decisions to interview. In many companies, the recruiter may not answer the phone because they are physically overwhelmed with reviewing hundreds of resumes.  Don’t take it personally if no calls are returned – they simply don’t have time. 

Have your script ready: “I brought in my resume and completed an application on (name the day) and I wondered when you are going to start the interviewing process?”  Don’t beg or tell your hard-life story.

Don't Rush to Answer

During the interview, think carefully about the question before answering. It is okay to take a few seconds, but don’t take too long. Answer in full sentences. Use the Queen’s English. Let the interviewer finish their questions and then pull out your own list of questions to ask about the position, company, and what problems are they trying to cure by hiring you. Ask if they would like samples of your work or a list of references. 

Obtain business cards of everyone you spoke with personally while interviewing at the company. Immediately after the interview, hand-write brief thank you notes addressed to each individual you encountered in the process – the HR representative, hiring manager, or interviewer – and place it in a mailbox that day. 

Give it Time

Wait a week before communicating with the company if they haven’t called you back immediately. Interviews may have been spread across several weeks. When you call, politely ask if there any decisions were made. If you can’t get a real person, you may leave a message, but keep it brief and cheerful. 

If you receive the message another candidate was chosen, don’t ask what you did wrong. Companies decline to answer those questions for fear of litigation (e.g., EEOC issues). Don’t waste your and their time. If you do reach a real person, ask them if the company would be open to considering you for another position. This informs recruiters there are no hard feelings and you are still open for further consideration.

Network with Family & Friends

Shopping for a new job is tedious. The process for today’s job searches is time-consuming and frustrating. Modern day job-hunting is predominantly online and digital, but prepare for ‘old-fashioned’ knocking on doors and making phone calls to folks you know in your network of friends, family, and business acquaintances.

Dawn Boyer, Ph.D., owner of D. Boyer Consulting – provides resume writing, social media management and training, business development, and human resources consulting. Reach her at: or
About the Author:

Dawn D. Boyer, Ph.D., has been an entrepreneur and business owner 14+ years, with a successful business in Richmond (1980s), currently in her own consulting firm, and a business partner with her husband in Virginia Beach, VA.  Her background experience is 22+ years in the Human Resources field, of which 12+ years are within the Federal & Defense Contracting industry. She is the author of 50 books on the topics of business, human resources research, career search practice, women’s study programs, genealogy and family lineages, and quotes for motivation and self-improvement (2,000+ & 3,000+ series).  Her books can be found on under Dawn D. Boyer.

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