2015 is the year that the New York Budget mixes in more posts about making more money. In the meantime, I don’t plan on forgetting my frugal roots. Creating wealth and accomplishing the goals I have set out for myself is dependent, in part, on the gap between my earning and my spending. Maximizing that gap means working on both saving and earning.
The CEO of the company that I work for (that I plan on retiring from in the next few years) has a great attitude towards running our company. He is an affable German man, prone to using clichés and one-liners. He says, “if we create great products, the money will get jealous and will come find us”. That’s what companies are supposed to do, right? They create value for someone and that person is willing to pay for that good or service.
It’s time to think of yourself as a company of 1.
First, let’s back up a bit. I can’t tell you how many times I have heard people ask the question, “how can I land this job?” I think that’s the wrong question. It’s the same as asking, “how can I get this girl to go out with me?” You are focusing on someone else’s actions. Why not focus on making yourself SO awesome that the company has no choice but to hire you (or even create a position for you where there previously was none)? Similarly, why not work on your own emotional intelligence, confidence, and compassion so that the right girl or guy can’t help but notice you?
Remember your company of 1? It’s time to work on the value that you are providing.
I apologize if you came here looking for tips on interviewing or cleaning up your resume. However, if you work on your own value, you will have so much to say on your resume and in your interview that the small tips and tricks won’t matter as much (but go ahead and do a google search for them anyway. It can’t hurt).
So how do you increase your value? There are a few key ways:
Learn: Go back to school. Find some continuing education classes in your field and take them. Sign up for email newsletters from respected sources in your industry. Listen to relevant podcasts and read relevant articles. But most of all, find a mentor!
Do: As much as you try to learn, the best education is actually jumping in and DOING. You may think that it’s impossible to do a job before actually getting the job. That is false in the majority of cases. Interested in engineering? Design and build something. Interested in marketing? Go into a local business and offer to do their marketing for free for 3 months. Even in professions where you need a certification such as a doctor or lawyer, action can be taken before landing the job. Write a blog. Create a podcast. Create a new idea in that field, take it to an expert and ask “what’s wrong with my thinking here”. Refine it and test it. If you think hard enough, I bet you can think of a way to “do” before you get the job. This has an added benefit as well. It’s said that the best jobs are the ones that you would continue to do, even if you never got paid. Why not test that out at the BEGINNING? Do the job first, without getting paid, and see if it is something you are passionate about.
Build: Having a network is a huge advantage when you are trying to land a job. Obviously because it allows you to find opportunities, but also, for most jobs, companies will recognize that they aren’t only hiring you, they are hiring your contacts. If they need to outsource an art project, you know someone who will give you a great deal. If your company comes out with a new product, you have a list of clients who trust you that might be interested in purchasing it. Build an email list of clients, or business contacts. Build a database of testimonials. Build something tangible that you can present to your company that has value for the job you are trying to land. The people who interview you might be able to have their doubts based on how you come across in an interview. They may second guess your enthusiasm for the position. However, they absolutely can’t refute a tangible asset that you bring to the table.
If you engage in those three actions, you will be LIGHTYEARS ahead of your competition for landing a job. You will also be ready to DO that job immediately upon being hired. I have been a hiring manager at my job in the past. If a candidate stepped into my office and mentioned that he or she had a blog about my industry (and legitimate effort was put into it), I would probably hire that person on the spot. Now, imagine walking in with a industry blog, a list of clients, educational credentials, and testimonials proving that you are an expert in the field before even starting the job. Hell, they might hire you to be the boss of the position you applied to!
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