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If you’re not ready to display an unrelenting persistence during your job search, you will likely fail. People who have significant roles in hiring for any potential employer are constantly busy; the pieces of their puzzle are constantly moving. Whether a networking contact, recruiter or hiring manager, their attention and interests are divided. With so many responsibilities and open positions to fill, you are not their main point of focus.
So you must be persistent in your job search. There’s no choice.
As job seekers, we understand this. And we know that follow-up isn’t just essential, it is our responsibility. Follow these five tips to help you impress a potential employer during your follow-up.
Be Accountable for Proactive Follow-up
No one will ever care more about your future than you. So if someone promises to get back to you, and then they don’t, follow up!
Note when he or she said they would call you. If a recruiter promised to follow-up at a particular time, call them a few hours later to politely remind them of the commitment and to show your interest. If it’s a day past the promised date, tactfully call or email them to follow-up. At the end of an interview, if the potential employer asks for a week to interview the rest of the candidates, then call with a very patient tone on day eight.
Thrice Should Be Nice
One call is rarely effective. Two calls or emails starts to show you’re serious and persistent. But it doesn’t guarantee a response.
There are times when a third call is absolutely necessary, perhaps even expected. If people sense apathy in any form, they become unmotivated to help you. People are inspired by sincere, genuine, and thoughtful job seekers willing to be bold. Be bold. Follow-up a minimum of three times for every job interview.
No Means No… But Not Every Time
Sometimes people give quick answers just to get people off of their backs. Sometimes it’s in the way you ask. Often, it’s in the way the employer or recruiter feels at the moment they answered. And, too often, the answer you get is a premature “no.”
Old fashioned persistence still works in 2016. And this is the perfect time to be persistent. Of course, asking the right questions in a friendly tone will often get you the information you want. And asking the right person will make all the difference in the world.
For the most effective follow-up possible, make sure you’re asking the right people the right questions in the right way.
Who is The Right Person?
Gatekeepers have you on the wrong side of the fence? Blocked by someone in human resources?
Go right to the source: the hiring or department manager. First, find out whether the hiring manager has a Facebook, Twitter or Instagram page (people seem less guarded on Twitter and Instagram than LinkedIn or through email). Follow them there, then interact. Work hard to build a mutually-beneficial relationship. After all, someone who is open and generous online is often an excellent resource once personal relationship is established.
As a job seeker, your goal is to maintain a continual stream of opportunities. And there is simply no better way to keep those opportunities warm than persistent and professional follow-up with potential employers. Follow this advice, and see if your job search strategy doesn’t prove much more effective and rewarding.
About Mark Anthony Dyson
I am the "The Voice of Job Seekers!" I offer compassionate career and job search advice as I hack and re-imagine the job search process. You need to be "the prescription to an employer's job description." You must be solution-oriented and work in positions in companies where you are the remedy. Your job search must be a lifestyle, and your career must be in front of you constantly. You can no longer shed your aspirations at the change seasons. There are strengths you have that need constant use and development. Be sure you sign up to download my E-Book, "421 Modern Job Search Tips 2021!" You can find my career advice and work in media outlets such as Forbes, Inc., Fast Company, Harvard Business Review, Glassdoor, and many other outlets.