This week I would like to talk about some very effective things that will help you do better when talking to people during your job search:
Preparation and Rehearsal
Preparation is simply thinking ahead….thinking of how you can answer questions such as “why have you been looking for work this long?”, or “why do you want to work here?” …better yet, preparation is thinking of great questions to ask them.
Real preparation involves writing these questions down, and then writing out their answers.
Maybe you aren’t preparing for questions – maybe you need to think of your value statement, or how you would introduce yourself to someone who works for a company that interests you… the idea is the same, think it out, and then write it out.
Rehearsal is just what it sounds like… you read your questions out loud until they make sense and sound natural… you have someone else ask you the “tough questions”, and you answer them while in the “interviewing mindset”… do this until it becomes second nature… while you do this, think of follow up questions, and make notes as you go…write out your vocemail messages, and practice those too.
I apply this to myself to this day. With every presentation I give, I rehearse many times over while pretending our dogs and cat are the audience…they can’t throw things at me, but more importantly, I can hear myself talk and I make adjustments until it sounds like “me”.
But wait, there’s more…
All of the preparation and rehearsal in the world won’t do you a bit of good unless you consistently Practice
Practice isn’t the same as rehearsal… the key difference is, rehearsal is safe and sterile, where you can’t really hurt yourself, but practice is done under live fire conditions, with real people who can be unpredictable. Simply put, you must take the rehearsed material, and keep putting it out there, until you (and those that might hire you), get comfortable with it… it’s like learning martial arts – I can read about it, think about it, and watch YouTube videos about it, but until I step out on the mats and risk getting punched in the head, it’s just an academic exercise.
Hear me when I tell you this – anything worth doing, is worth doing badly until you get good at it. I don’t care if you stutter and stammer through your first ten networking meetings – keep on doing it, and eventually you won’t be stuttering and stammering… this is what kills most job searches – giving up too soon.
You might say that this sounds “too much like work” and that you’ll be fine if you wing it like you always do… I guarantee that there are people out there less brilliant than you, who are getting the jobs because they simply want it more and are doing more to prepare.
Like the title says, all of your favorite actors prepare and rehearse for their roles… learn from them, and do as they do….HINT: think of being a job seeker as a role you play as well…this will keep you from personalizing everything that happens.
I know it always sounds like I’m adding to the things you should be doing in your job search instead of making it easier, but the truth is, there is no “easy button”… you will have to work as hard at finding a job, as you did actually DOING your job. These are the foundational things that need doing, so the search is more productive in the long run.
Until next time, I wish you all the best.
Thomas Patrick Chuna is a certified Five O’Clock Club job search coach.
The Five O’Clock Club is a nationally recognized outplacement firm with a proven job search methodology that helps job seekers get better jobs faster.
The Five O’Clock Club also provides affordable, humane outplacement services to companies who care about the wellbeing of their employees.
Tom is also an experienced independent recruiter specializing in molecular oncology research scientists & MD’s.
Learn more: http://www.fiveoclockclub.com http://www.patrick-international.net