How can I boost my job search so that I finally receive a job offer as a project manager in the telecom industry? I’ve heard that it is so competitive that all job seekers would need is to have connections to secure employment in this field.
Do you have any advice for me?
Signed: Frustrated PMP (F-PMP)
To respond to your great question, I have consulted with expert coach and facilitator Miguel Abascal, Project Manager, M.Fin, PMP at TD Canada Trust, who also volunteers to support newcomers as a TRIEC Mentor.
He presents eight project management tips that can be incorporated into a job search:
Using the mindset of a consultant or entrepreneur when looking for work is critical. Building your career and securing employment is a project that you are managing from beginning to end: you set the tone, the deadlines, the plan and the process. Set up a workplace at your home or in a local coffee shop until you find your new employer. Don’t forget that relationship building is everything.
Adapt To Change.
Flexibility, expecting the unexpected and identifying change opportunities are hallmarks of an effective Project Manager. They are always considering the possibility of changing plans, adapting documentation and thinking about how this impacts on a project. Job seekers can learn from that: evaluate your options and re-evaluate them again, if they are not attainable. Look at your resume and LinkedIn profile: are they working? If not, change. Listen to advice and be open to adapting what you do.
Know What You Don’t Know.
An openness to learn something new, a love of learning, an understanding your strengths and weaknesses and always looking to improve is fundamental to a project’s success Never be complacent; always strive to find better solutions to the problems in your job search. For example, if you keep applying to jobs and are not getting any interviews, it’s an opportunity to learn new techniques for your job search, such as updating your social media skills.
Lead With Purpose and Passion.
Follow the mantra of the Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK®): “people will follow those who know what they are doing and who can generate results”. Nothing feels better than accomplishment. Make decisive, confident decisions, and demonstrate that in your job search.
Create a detailed and thorough project plan. Identify the milestones you wish to achieve. As mentioned above, be prepared to change and adjust. Knowing where you are and creating a plan to reach your destination is 50% of the work. Your plan will be like a Blueprint or a Map that will help you see if you need to make any adjustments.
Act on your goals, with an expectation of success. Keep practicing and preparing for job interview. Utilize approaches such as Information Interviews, which are the secret for networking success. Engage in targeted research of the companies, the industry and hiring managers that are relevant to achieving your job goal.
Monitor and Control.
Be very organized and keep meticulous records of your activities including job postings, applications, interviews, networking activities and any other relevant action. Organizational skills are important in the job search. Use tools such as Google Spreadsheets and Calendar, and keep a schedule of your interviews and any engagement with people.
Make sure that people experience you as organized and in control. As Maya Angelou said: “People will forget what you said, even what you did but they will never forget how you made them feel .”
Before you say “yes” to the job offer, make sure you’re asking the right questions. Understand your value proposition, how you will help the company succeed, get to know the workplace culture, evaluate the offer including salary, benefits, hours, company holidays and start date.
Don’t forget: Treat the job offer like a business deal, in which, you, my friend are very valuable, because there is none like you!
Joanna Samuels B.Ed. (Adult Education), M.Ed., CMF, CTDP, RRP is a certified Life Skills Coach and Personality Dimensions Facilitator who works at JVS Toronto as a Job Developer/Job Coach/Workshop Facilitator. Also, Joanna is a part-time instructor of employment counselling with people with disabilities at George Brown College.