Developing Your Career

Don’t Conduct a “Call-Me-Maybe” Job Search

By Greg Simpson on October 30, 2012

Are you approaching your job search follow-up with the same hesitant, slightly pleading “Call me maybe” sentiment expressed in the popular song? If you’re passively waiting for recruiters and hiring managers to make the call, you’re letting them control your search and you could be left out in the cold.

Managers are looking for confident candidates who are proactive and self-motivated. And one way to measure candidate confidence is by assessing his or her follow-up. Do you show actual interest in the position? Are you willing to take a chance to get what you want?

Here are a few suggestions on when you should be following up:

  • After submitting a resume. Expert opinions vary as to follow-up after submitting a resume. If you’re submitting via an online system, follow-up is difficult. For resumes sent to the hiring manager or the recruiter responsible for the targeted position, follow up about one-two weeks after submission with a simple phone call, voice mail or email verifying receipt of the resume, expressing your interest in the position, and inquiring as to questions they may have about your qualifications.
  • After an interview. Follow up about five days after an interview, or a time frame consistent with what you learned about the hiring process during the interview (this is in addition to a thank-you note that should be send immediately after an interview). Again, inquire if they have any additional questions and affirm your interest in the position.
  • After networking meetings. Follow up periodically with networking partners to keep your name foremost in their minds and to stay connected. Send them pertinent articles, introduce them to a new networking partner or solicit their expertise for questions related to their industry or function.

It’s important to be proactive and clearly demonstrate your interest and enthusiasm. But don’t let your enthusiasm cross over into stalker behavior. Provide people with a little wiggle room when waiting for a reply. Don’t assume you’re being ignored or treated unfairly – and always be polite and courteous.

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