I get asked a lot of questions about finding a job in a bad economy, and how to get a job at the company of our dreams. In order to help answer these questions, we've put together a little guide on the art of stalking. One of the oldest hobbies in the world, stalking has come to earn a bad rep, but we aim to change all that and use it for some good.
When done properly one can stalk their way to success in love and business. Because the economy has tanked and jobs are scarce, we're offering up a few tips on stalking your way to success. Enjoy!
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Stalking for Success
Lets say you want this dream job at Acme Company, where you would work with widgets. Unfortunately, Acme is highly competitive and it's hard to get hired there. You could do as they suggest and send in your resume, but that will be put at the bottom of hundreds of other similar ones.
A better option is to use a back door, through which many others have successfully gone. This back door is simply subscribing to the old theory that, "Its all about who you know, not what you know that's important." We can always learn the what part if we just get the who part down.
Think about this how many songs have you heard produced by terrible singers? How many movies have you seen with terrible actors? These people didn't get their break because of talent obviously. Instead, they got their break because they knew the right people. Now granted, talent can keep you successful, but it's not enough to get started.
"But I don't know anyone at Acme!," we hear. "How could that work for me? If one doesn't have a back door into the company of their dreams, then they must create it. One of the tried and true methods of doing this is through the highly effective art of stalking. Heres how I might do it.
Putting the Pieces in Place
Lets return to our Acme example. The first thing I would do is find out who makes the hiring decisions in the department I wanted to work in. If I wanted to work in their world-famous marketing department, I would simply go to their website and try to determine who might do the hiring. I would write down the names of the relevant managers and VPs and anyone else listed in my target department.
My goal now is to get to know the people on this list, so it's time to go stalking. I want to meet these people without them knowing that I want to work for Acme. I want to build some sort of relationship and shared interest and only after that has been established would I ask them about Acme. By then I'm in a much stronger position.
Before I go on, a brief disclaimer. Some of you may be put off by the word "stalking" in this article and feel as though you would be breaking the law by using these methods. First, I'm not suggesting that you use these methods. This advice is for entertainment purposes only. Second, while all states have stalking laws, most of these laws sound something like this:
"A person who intentionally and repeatedly follows or harasses another person and who makes a credible threat, either expressed or implied, with the intent to place that person in reasonable fear of death or serious bodily harm is guilty of the crime of stalking."
As you can see by this definition, we are not repeatedly following anyone, we're not harassing anyone, and we're not making any type of threat, expressed or implied. All we're doing is seeking info similar to what a private investigator would do. No harm, no foul. Now, enough with the disclaimer and on with the blunt advice.
Tracking Down Leads
Now that I have my target list, the question becomes how to actually find these people. In the past that may have been an issue, but with the capabilities of the internet today we can find just about anyone in the world.
I would start by using Google to find out if these people are involved in any organizations or foundations outside of Acme. Many executives either sit on the boards of other companies or are members of organizations they're passionate about. If so, then those would be my entrances.
Second, I'd look them up on all of the social media sites, especially Facebook and LinkedIn. If I didn't have a profile, then I'd get one for this sole purpose. I'd find out everything I can about them on these sites. You'd be surprised how much info you can find about a total stranger and they're offering it all up willingly.
Finally, I'd look up their addresses in online white pages and people-search engines. One of the best of these is Intelius.com which can be used to find info on just about anyone. I'm pretty sure even you are on there! Each search will cost a buck or two, but it's worth it and it's highly accurate.
Making the Connection
So now, in my hypothetical situation, I find two leads. One is a marketing manager who lives near me and the other is the VP of Marketing who lives across town. So I begin staking them out just as a private eye would. I learn that the VP is a regular at a jazz club on Saturdays, and that the marketing manager works out at a gym not far away from me. I decide to make an effort to accidentally bump into both of them.
I meet the VP at the jazz club and start up a conversation. We don't really click and it doesn't go far. The next day I put on my jogging suit and go to the gym. While on the treadmill I strike up a conversation with the marketing manager. I tell him that I'm new to the gym and ask him all about it. He's very open and friendly and we hit it off. We continue to keep in touch and talk during workouts for the next few weeks. The relationship has been formed.
After a few weeks I casually mention that I'm looking for a job and that I'm into widgets. He let's on that he works for Acme and maybe he could help. He agrees to look at my resume and low and behold, I'm hired the following week.
Who to Approach
If I we're trying to get a job with a celebrity or media figure I wouldn't directly approach them. They get approached all the time by people like me, so it would be a waste of time. Instead I would focus my attention on finding out who all is in their inner-circle and track them down.
These people can often be found by Google searches and reading old interviews with the big shot. I would also read online bios on them as well as books and magazine articles about them. I'm sure to find some mention of people who are in their circle, be it their manager, best friend, brother, old mentor, or even an up-and-comer that they are mentoring. That's who I want to track down as they will open the door when the time comes.
If I can't find these back doors and I decide to try my luck with the big shot, then I would approach him only to ask for advice. If I get a response, I'd keep the conversation going back and forth. I'd talk about things he's passionate about, outside of the industry that he's famous for.
Finally, I'd constantly be thinking of what I could do for him, not what he could do for me. He could care less about me unless I have something to offer. I'd make my case and hope for the best. If it didn't work out then I'd be back at the bookstore and library looking for more names and starting the process all over again. Wash, rinse, repeat.
Just like in any other venture, persistence pays off in the long run. Keep stalking and good things will happen.
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Posted in Jobs/Employment Post Date 10/28/2019