How I got myself this great job at makepositive using LinkedIn – Part – 2

  February 4, 2015       PeiMun Lim

Chapter 2 – The Wrong Strategy

I write and re-write my CV.  I polish my cover letter.  I trawl job boards, and apply to postings.  Like a good little project manager, I keep track of progress of who/what/when/next steps in a little spreadsheet.

It’s not long before I realise my mistake.  I have been thinking that my Awesomeness will shine through and that employers will stampede to my door.  Instead, what I get is loads of spam emails from bad job matches from cv libraries and databases.

“Dear Pie Lim (why do they not even try to get my name right?),

I hope you are well.  Our job matching algorithm suggests that you would be suitable for the contract Dynamics Developer role we have based in Glasgow, at the rate of two bucketful of cash a day.  You must have more than 55 years of .net experience.  You must be up to date about the most modern add-ons and applications of Microsoft stack.  You must have had experience programming the Space shuttle.  You must be able to write bug-free code and speak Sanskrit.”

What? Where does it say in my résumé that I am a developer?

I also start getting emails from recruitment agents, some of who are less than honest about having actual posts and who only want me on their ‘books’.  Talking to them makes me want to stab my eyes out rusty fruit knife.  Saying that, there are a few genuine ones who network and who sees the long-term value of cultivating relationship with people, whether they are available or not.  Some of them take me out for coffee or lunch just to see how I am doing, how the market is doing and generally keep in touch with me.  It’s the other bad apples who give all recruitment agents a bad name.

Most automated emails from recruiters who simply match keywords (very badly) are promptly redirected into the bin with an auto-delete rule.  However, one email manages to capture my attention.  I have since deleted it, so am making up some of the words below, but the gist is intact.

“Dear Ms Lim,

I believe that our consultant can assist you.  We are not a recruitment agency, and have decades of experience assisting professionals such as yourself.  Please can you ring the following number at your convenience to set up an appointment: 020x xxx xxxx.”

Sounds interesting, so I ring and set up and appointment setting aside my nagging feeling that I might be set up for a white-collar 419 type scam.

On the day of the appointment, I meet a Miss Apollo (not her real name of course), who tells me that she’s able to help me with my goal. I am still a little sceptical.  I am given questionnaires and we go through what I am looking for, and what excites me.  We talk about ‘passion’ and ‘core values’ and ‘motivation’ in life.  We talk about how they can help me identify industry sectors and companies I would like to work in, and to target them by identifying contacts and individuals whom I can connect directly.  They would help me with my ‘marketing campaign’ and keep me on my toes daily by finding out what I am doing about ‘leads’ and how I am working my opportunities.

She tells me that applying for vacancies on job boards are fairly useless because they represent only a small fraction of the open job market, and that my cv (last honed about 8 years ago when I was doing serious job hunting) needs to be updated in a different way.

Instead of stating experience and positions by reverse chronological order, followed by academic qualifications and certifications (which I am told is very old school), I should be highlighting my strengths and achievements up front with minimal fluff.

Her sales pitch made me raise my eyebrows.

“Of course, you are worth far more than you believe. You should be earning at the very least five bucketful of cash. A week.  And a paid mansion with indoor heated pool and stables along with a personal butler and chef.  And a Unicorn to take you to and from work.

We can help you find that Perfect Job.  You’ll get access to our industry experts who will supply you with high level contacts in the companies you want to work at, and help coach you for the interview and also on how to negotiate your worth.

However, I must caveat that whether you get the job of your dreams is completely up to your own efforts, on how you work the contacts we provide you and whether you take our advice and guidance.  We have indeed helped x hundred numbers of aspiring high earners into their dream job.  But we cannot give you a reference because they don’t want to be bothered and want their privacy respected (what?)

All it will cost you is just one and a half bucketful of cash. And a kidney as a first installment. And another two further installments of a right lung and three toenails.”

I try not to let my eyes bug out too much.  There is no guarantee of a job, and they want how much? Up front?  I can see some value in their offering, but the price is mind boggling.  Besides, I am rather attached to my toenails.

I am sure I can find That Job without carving out an organ.  I will just need a good strategy in place, and perhaps a couple of books to help point the way.  There are many people who are on LinkedIn who could potentially help me; I just need to know how to find them.

To find out more, I go home and start browsing on my favorite website, Amazon.