"Knowing the rules will help you to win."
If you think of job hunting and careers as a game, there is one thing missing that you would normally get, if you bought a board game in a shop, and that is a set of instructions, which tells you how to play the game and a set of rules by which the game has to be played. There isn't a rule book, but you, like everyone else, will subconsciously be conforming to rules that don't exist.
Most people use their common sense, do what other people do, and pick up what advice they can from: anyone, including: teachers at school and college, career advisers, employers, recruitment consultants / head hunters, parents, friends and work colleagues.
The advice is generally along the lines:
1. Find out what you want to do.
2. Gain the necessary skills, qualifications and experience.
3. Find jobs to apply for.
4. Write a CV and cover letter.
5. Apply for jobs.
6. Go for interviews and through recruitment processes.
7. Hopefully get offered a job.
8. Work hard, do well, get promoted, train and gain new qualifications, achieve results.
9. Apply for new jobs.
10. Have a great life and career.
If you apply for jobs and don't get an interview, you tend to think your CV is to blame, and perhaps get help, and have a professionally written CV. If you get interviews, but don't get offered the job, it is logical to think that perhaps your interview skills need improving, which perhaps they do. Sometimes, you can do interview training and find that doesn't improve things either. Whatever the reason that things aren't working, your confidence and self-belief can easily start to fall.
In the days when things used to work for most people, you had no need to understand more about job hunting and careers. It is rather like a car engine, you don't even need to think about how or even why it works, until it goes wrong. If you are not a technical person, you might call a garage, or a breakdown service, to fix it for you.
If can you imagine a situation where you call a garage or a breakdown service, and they can't fix it, because nothing that used to work, seems to work anymore; that is where many people are with job hunting and careers. If you don't need a car, perhaps you can take public transport, but if you do need it, you will undoubtedly want to know why it is not working, particularly when many other people's cars are working.
I admire scientists who take a problem and find a solution. There is nearly always a solution, if you are creative enough, and look hard enough. During the Second World War, a team of dedicated people working in total secrecy at Bletchley Park in the UK, managed to crack the German cryptographic codes, which meant they could intercept and understand secret German messages. In doing so, they were able to save countless lives, and help to end the war.
Global warming wasn't important to most people 20 years ago, but as the consequences become more widely known and energy prices sky-rocket, countries experience unprecedented flooding or droughts, food shortages and even death ensues, it starts to become an issue for the ordinary man or lady in the street.
Few people have had the need or the insight to take Job Hunting and Careers to a deeper level, to unlock the codes which result in success.
James Dyson reinvented the vacuum cleaner, and made himself a multi-millionaire, but few people thought the vacuum cleaner needed reinventing. Penicillin used to be the wonder drug until bugs started to become resistant.
I believe there is an imperative to understand job hunting and careers at a different level, to recognise how the world has changed and to come up with solutions, which will work for you. Perhaps now is the time to reinvent job hunting and careers, to rethink, something that has for so long, just been taken for granted.
I still believe that we need do to all the traditional things, but take them to the next level. When I hear people talk about advanced job hunting, they refer to the use of social media, networking, online recruitment etc. Being an inventive and creative person, I rather like people who use guerrilla marketing tactics, walk around towns with sandwich boards advertising themselves, coming up with video CV's and personal websites etc., but I recognise it doesn't suit everyone, and will only work in certain circumstances for some people.
"Don't be constrained by rules that don't exist, be creative and innovative and do what works."
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