If we meet at a party and exchange credentials about what we do, beware when you tell me a LinkedIn success story. Because you will appear as a guest blogger right here, just as Doug did.
I met Doug as he was in the middle of the interview process for the open job. His LinkedIn story starts ahead of that. In the end, this type of success can happen to you too!
The job search, it can be such a painful process. It can be like a job onto itself and when you already have a 9 to 5 gig and a family, carving out a sliver of time between work, little league games and the gym and then amping up the energy to explore new career opportunities is hard, even more so when you are looking for a specific type of role.
I say this because recently I came to the realization that is was time for me to start looking for new a career in external communications. At that moment, I was both excited by new possibilities but at the same time paralyzed by the journey it would take to get there. It turns out that the path to a new job has changed quite a bit since the last time I tuned up my resume.
First off, I was lucky–unlike many others out there, I had a good job with a well known brand and, while things weren’t perfect, I was both appreciated and challenged. Translation–as long as I was patient, I could be very picky when it came to my pursuit. And I had to be because I didn’t just want another straight external communications role, I’ve been doing that for more than 20 years. I was seeking something far more specific.
Over the past couple of years, I had done a lot of communications work with executives, from General Managers to VPs, Distinguished Engineers and directors. This executive communications work was exciting and, come to find out, I was really good at it. This is what I wanted to do next and through LinkedIn I was able to monitor possible jobs that fit this to a T.
Before embarking on the journey, I updated my resume to emphasize my success in working with senior level executives. I even created my own web site featuring the many articles I had helped them create. With that the process began. I patiently checked my job alerts every day, looking at each one. It was easy but did require significant patience. For those that seemed like a fit, I connected to learn more and if it wasn’t, I moved on. Seems easy enough but, as I mentioned earlier, it did test my patience every single day. Then one day, the ideal job popped up on my screen, executive communications. It really was the perfect storm. Exactly the role I wanted in the industry I desired most, the Internet of Things.
What’s funny is that just days after I saw it for the first time, it disappeared. Talk about frustrating. But I kept looking and a few weeks later it was back and I acted immediately. I looked for anyone I knew who was connected to the company, sharing my background, the extensive work I had done with executives, the articles I had helped to create and more.
One day I got a call and began the interview process. With everyone I spoke, I was excited to share my successes and that must have come through because I got the job. Looking back, the big takeaway for me is the idea that when you are looking for a new job and have something very specific you would love to do, you really can go for it. Opportunities are everywhere and through the LinkedIn community you can boil thousands of them down to find just what you want. It can take time but you will get there.
Doug began career in a slightly different place from where he is today–He was a bass player in the local Boston-based band, Betty Goo. Since hanging up his bass, he shifted his talents to communications and hasn’t looked back since (although he still picks up the bass from time to time). It’s been more than 20 years and over this time, Doug has evolved into a passionate, driven and seasoned communications professional who matches provocative thought leadership ideas with an expansive set of skills to deliver results, whether for a small start-up business or global industry leading brands.