By Lea Wolfinger, Vice President, Ashton Tweed
The job search environment has changed rapidly over the past few years. Between the digital technologies, the millennial generation, and the evolving employment landscape, there are some new approaches to job hunting that mid-senior level professionals may need to acclimate to in order to succeed in finding their next opportunity. As an executive recruiter who has interacted with thousands of life sciences executives on their job-hunting journey, here are 10 mistakes I often see job candidates making in their efforts. You’re:
1. Not reaching out enough.
It’s absolutely okay to follow-up a few weeks after a conversation or to connect with someone on LinkedIn! Keep yourself top or mind… or someone else will.
2. Not contacting recruiters.
Hello! We are currently filling positions in your industry. It doesn’t hurt to send us your résumé to have on hand when new roles come in. Most recruiters will save your information for future use.
3. Not engaging in your industry.
Get your face (or profile) out there! Get to networking events, share your industry insights on LinkedIn, or even just send an interesting article to a past or potentially future colleague.
4. Not focusing on keywords.
Sometimes your résumé does end up in a large database. Do you want it to be found or die in that pile? Make it keyword searchable so it can see the light of day! The same goes for your LinkedIn profile.
5. Not being personable.
People want to like who they work with. Do you and the hiring manager both root for the same football team? Bond over it!
6. Not embracing technology.
Make your information available via LinkedIn or other professional networking or personal websites. And make yourself available via phone, email, and even video chat. These technologies put the world at every hiring manager’s fingertips, so you better be a part of that world!
7. Not quantifying successes.
Did you complete a multimillion dollar merger? Did you increase sales by 100%? Communicate your past successes in numbers for hiring managers to gauge. Numbers tend to stick out on a résumé packed with words.
8. Not carrying out favors.
Nice guys don’t finish last in this case. Did an ex-coworker ask for a reference or recommendation? Did a friend in your industry ask for business advice? Give it! What goes around comes back around. People always remember favors done for them.
9. Not spreading good news.
Did a company you’re interested in just get FDA approval? Or raise a lot of money to reach their goals? Congratulate them! People like to hear about themselves… And it doesn’t hurt to associate yourself with positive news.
10. Not giving credit to the big picture.
Remember that in the life sciences, we are all working towards the greater good of human health. Improving patient lives is key, it is the foundation of our work and something that we can all relate to. Connecting with others over this big picture goal is the ultimate way to remind hiring managers that we’re in this together!
These mistakes may seem minor, but I assure you they are not! These simple efforts to optimize your visibility go a very long way in building relationships and standing out from your competition. Don’t make the mistake of underestimating the power of the small things – with the resources of today, they can make all the difference. Looking for new opportunities in the life science industry? Upload your résumé today!
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