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Lazy? Can’t Be Bothered? Clueless? It Will Show!
It’s happened enough times to me.
I’ve received these random emails from people I don’t know asking me to refer suitable jobs to them or recommend them to someone.
I’ve seen people post these same requests on discussion boards and niche forums.
In some form or other, the message goes :
Here I am.
I am looking for a job.
Help me out.
Hook me up.
Send me a reference.
Inevitably, I wonder…
What is he thinking?
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Does he, in all seriousness, expect a newly-established LinkedIn connection or a mass-produced, generic cold-call email or post that he sends off will cause his reader to drop what they are doing and go all out to get him placed at a reputable organisation?
Your Lack of Focus Confuses Your Audience
I feel there’s 3 possible conclusions as to why he may believe an approach like this would work…
Firstly, he is lazy.
He simply cannot be bothered to make the one on one connection needed, develop the relationship and then make the request at the appropriate time.
Because we know the start of the relationship rarely is the right time, unless you can provide a compelling enough reason to do so or there’s something in it for the person concerned to go out of his way to do.
He does not want to spend the time needed to develop relationships and build on them.
He wants the quick and easy route – except that on close inspection, he will find that he is not getting the results he so desires.
Secondly, he can’t be bothered.
He is apathetic, indifferent.
Too laid back.
He seems to think that the world ought to already be familiar with him and see him as he sees himself.
Why do I need to go out there and prove myself?
Thirdly, he is completely clueless.
Whether he’s been in the game for a year or ten, he’s largely been living under a shell, blissfully unaware of how things need to get done.
The 3 You’s
There’s the person you see, looking back at you, in your mind’s eye.
It is your perception of yourself.
There’s the person that others see, taking in all the various facets of you and how you relate to the world around you.
And then, there’s just you — you as you are.
Frequently, the person you try to project is not always the person that others see you as.
There’s always a gap.
Your success lies in finding out where exactly that gap lies and closing that gap as much as you can.
You do that by taking stock..
- By being mindful
- By rehashing the past to see the lessons to be learned
- By being open to another way of looking at things
Where You Focus Is Where You End Up
In all the things you do, you’d want to make sure that your efforts have an impact.
You spend the time, the effort, the resources and if you have nothing to show for it, what would be the point?
No, you want to do something that has meaning and impact or don’t do it at all.
So how do you ensure that your efforts are successful?
How do you ensure that you close the gap between who you are projecting and who people do see?
Focus On Where You Want To Be, Not Where Are
Put yourself in the other’s shoes
The best way to reach someone else is to think like that person.
That’s hard though because you are not him.
You haven’t got his set of experiences or values.
So you try as much as you can to come as close as possible to this.
See it from another’s perspective, building up on your empathy levels, exploring different scenarios – all these will do you no harm to work on and hone.
Give it a go as you’ve got nothing to lose and everything to gain.
Do the work
We’d like to believe in shortcuts.
Yes, there are always shortcuts to explore but I am not sure that they necessarily lead you down the path you chose.
You need to do the work.
I believe that now, more than ever before, for one simple reason: You have everything to gain from it.
There’s no loss with doing the work — but there is plenty to gain.
The problem is that you don’t always see the gain immediately as it’s latent.
Some people have it easy but your griping about that doesn’t change your situation.
So get on with it.
Everything has a rhyme and reason which in time to come, will make sense to you.
For now, hustle is a word you need to understand with every fibre within and embrace wholeheartedly.
Give more than you get
It will make you feel good.
It will help lay the groundwork for your personal brand.
Prove yourself first THEN ask people to give you a chance
I don’t understand a world in which people think that things are owed to them.
No one owes you anything.
The best strategy and the one I feel makes the strongest case is for you to do all you can first; then, make the pitch.
Create something you can point to
If you’re going to do the work, let it speak for you.
Time and time again.
Especially now with Twitter and LinkedIn and in what is, in essence, your digital footprint.
Let it speak for you when you are asleep, when you are away on holiday, when you can’t come to the phone.
Nothing can get done if you are scared.
It will immobilise you and it will draw strength from inaction.
Speak your truth, do your work for no one else can do it as you can.
The Last Word
Work on your goals.
You can amble through life or you can create a life of meaning and purpose.
But you don’t just have goals.
Having goals is about having a vision of where things ought to be, and your place in it.
It’s about understanding that things can be a certain way but one must work to get there.
To discover your goals, you need to explore, to be curious and follow through on it.
Find out what you’re made of.
Fine tune what you have.
We’re all trying to get somewhere.
The question is how…
Let us know how things changed for you when you were — or even are — looking for a job by starting a conversation below.
What shifted in you that resulted in a shift around you?
Rowena is the Programme Director at Flipside, a business services company providing professional certification course training.
Flipside provides strategic direction, oversight on client training and corporate functional areas.
Accelerate Magazine is a leading human resource magazine started by Rowena, of which she is the Editor.
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