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Several years ago, I was sitting at my desk when my secretary ran into my office. She told me the career services dean of a major American law school was on the telephone, demanding to speak with me, and that she was extremely angry.
I took the call and the dean yelled at me for several minutes. She was angry about a letter I’d sent telling her I wanted to help her students with a service called Legal Authority, which assists law students and attorneys in getting jobs by doing mass mailings of their résumés to employers in given cities matching their interests. Numerous law students and recent graduates from the school had used Legal Authority with excellent results, and they had even provided numerous Legal Authority testimonials and reviews. I asked the dean why she was so angry.
“People need to network when they look for jobs, like they used to do,” she said. “Your methods of getting jobs are removing the personal connection from the job search process. The students need to be going to functions and meeting people to get jobs.”
Incredibly, as I was speaking with her on the phone, one of my employees forwarded me a testimonial via e-mail from someone who had gotten a job using our service, six months after graduating from the school. I literally received the testimonial while the dean was yelling at me – what a coincidence!
The gist of the e-mail was that the person had tried everything within his power to get a job, including using the school’s job placement service, and then within days of using our service he had suddenly received numerous job offers. Our service worked wonders for the person’s career.
“I will never recommend your service to anyone!” These were the dean’s final words before slamming down the phone.
The point of this story is I don’t want to see you stuck in a rut when you’re searching for a job. I don’t want you to try one thing over and over again, if it’s not working for you. I want you to get the job you want, quickly and efficiently. To do this, you need to clear your mind and be open to all the possibilities. I also do not want you to rely on other people and their opinions about what is best for you in your job search.
One of my favorite quotes is by Albert Einstein, who wrote of insanity as “doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.”
You need to realize that if you searching for a job and you’re not getting results, you need to change what you are doing. You should not keep using the same unsuccessful formula. You need to give yourself as many options as you possibly can. To do this, you need to be willing to try new things and constantly change how you are approaching the market and your job search. You also need to stop listening to what other people are telling you about your job search, and keep your eye on the ball. Your objective is to get a job, nothing more and nothing less.
I love fast computers and refuse to work with anything else. I also love having a fast mind and refuse to work with anything else. Beyond buying the fastest computer I can find at the electronics store, I always do my best to ensure I don’t have a lot of programs running at the same time – it could start choking on itself and be unable to run at a decent speed.
All systems can end up getting overwhelmed.
It is the same thing with your mind and how you go about a job search. If you are looking for a job, that is precisely what you need to be worrying about–finding, securing, and keeping a good job. You do not need to worry about anything that is not related to this. There are plenty of ways to clog your mind with unnecessary information and worries. For example, you could worry about war in a far-off land, you could worry about whether or not the leader of North Korea is willing to disarm, or you could worry about whether or not there are dust mites living in your carpet. All of these distractions will keep you from pursuing your goal with the proper amount of strength and focus.
I once took a class on meditation, and over the course of several sessions, I learned that much of it is about clearing your mind and focusing. Achieving this state of focus makes people considerably calmer because they are no longer processing loads and loads of information in the form of worry and aggravation.
You cannot clog your own computer with unnecessary information. You need to be absolutely sure your mind stays clear so you can focus. You need to be focused on getting a job in the way you want and the way that works best for you.
Generally, you do not want others to pass judgment on you and your methods of looking for a job. If people are telling you to try numerous ways of looking for a job, then I would recommend listening. If people are trying to pin you into a corner and tell you to look for a job in one way, then I would recommend staying away from them.
If you are trying to do anything in your life, you are going to be better off trying numerous methods, rather than just one. For example, if you are marketing a product, do you think you will have more success if you:
(a) send a letter to the consumer,
(b) send a letter to the consumer, have a salesperson call the consumer, have a salesperson visit the consumer, put a billboard on the freeway for the consumer to see, put an advertisement for the product in the paper, put an advertisement for the product in several magazines, and hold a special event where the consumer can come see the product personally?
It should be obvious if you try many different strategies you are going to sell more of the product. Unfortunately, many people make the mistake of believing they should only conduct their job search one way. They listen to other people who tell them the way things should be done.
You should listen to your heart in your job search. Do not let others influence how you go about looking for a job. Yes, you need connections. However, you also need to put yourself out there and apply to every job and employer you can find.
Be focused when you are searching and realize the prize waiting for you is your dream job. This is what I want for you, and it’s something that’s going to make a real difference in how you search for and get a job. This is how you will end up winning.
Different results will not come from doing the same thing over and over again; to succeed, you must be innovative. Free your mind of unnecessary, extraneous thoughts and remain singularly focused on your job search. Your own instinct will guide you far better than a surplus of outside advice.
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