Do you really want a job?
I get it. Things are brutal out there. It is the summer time. Finding work is hard work. It is very hard work. But I am very, very puzzled at some of the things I am hearing and seeing in the job market right now. Here are a few of the things that are making me shake my head and wonder if job seekers are at all serious about working or are just taking the summer off (not bright with the coming second dip of a recession!)
1). Not connecting. We have a monthly Speed Networking session, like speed dating for suits. I have heard from client after client that they've told people from these events that they can help them. They've called people with good leads. And they don't get return calls! Sheer idiocy! This is like turning down a job, people. What is up with that?
2). Not attending networking events. We have people sign up for this same, very effective event, pay, and not show. I hear the same from colleagues who put on other effective networking events. They have trouble getting registrations, then, of the registrations (paid ones) they do get, they have a 20 percent - 50 percent no-show rate. Most of us have a "no refunds" policy, so it isn't the money. Get to these events. It is the ONLY way to get employed in Denver and most other cities, too.
3). Not showing for job interviews. This one I really don't get. I've heard from several great employers I know that people haven't bothered to show for job interviews. When I was interviewing earlier in the year, I had four no-shows for a good job I had at an entry level, and another one at a higher level. You'd think this was 1999 instead of 2011, and that unemployment was at 4% instead of a real unemployment rate of over 12 percent. Not bright.
4). Going on staycation. I hear of people who don't even have the (bad) excuse of having paid for a vacay when they were employed and deciding to take it anyway. Get off the couch and get out there! The hiring bubble in September and October is going to be very short and not terribly big this year. If you miss it, who knows what January will bring? You don't have time to putz, Putz.
5). Wanting everything for free. Just because you're unemployed doesn't mean that you can or should get everything for free or very cheap. Free and cheap things may not help you and may not be good quality. Pay for quality help in your job search and stop mooching and expecting everyone to just give you everything!
6). Just "working your own network." Get help with your network. now. Unless you've been keeping up your "own network," it is not sufficient. Unless you've had three or more networking coffees a week for three or more years, you don't have a Denver network. You have golfing buddies. Get help and/or buy a network if you're looking for work, or you'll be unemployed a very, very long time.
Here is the reality: The "bipartisan debt deal" that our lovely president and useless Congress crammed down the throats of the American people included a very poisonous pill. There is no extension of Federal unemployment benefits. Come 1/1/2012, millions of people will have no more unemployment checks. Don't count on Federal benefits extensions getting through the Tea Party Congress. I doubt they will. This means a double dip Recession or full-blown Depression. As even subsistence money ends, there will be a real downward economic spiral. Go here to learn why.
Contrary to any advice I've given in the past, my advice now is to get employed and stay employed now, even if you have to take a step backwards. Since August 2nd it is a brutal new world. Get work. Don't wait. Get off your duff and get serious now while you still can, even if it costs money, takes all your time and leaves you totally exhausted. You really have no choice.
If you're serious about finding work or just building a great network, join John Heckers and his partners on Monday, Aug. 22 at the Denver Athletic Club for "Surefire Networking: 10 Ways to Rapidly Build Your Professional Network." More info and required registration here. If you truly cannot afford the (minor) registration fee and truly need to attend this class, call me at 720.581.4301 and we'll arrange for a very discounted fee for you. We're trusting your honesty in this, and only a very limited number are available. We are NOT selling our services at this class!