Thursday, June 5, 2014

Three Things an Explorer* Can Teach Us About the Modern Job Hunt

Explorers find and bring back treasures. They are an important Role for the workplace because of their many discoveries, which often lead to great new ideas. So what can we learn from them in the world of work? What do they do that helps them succeed when searching for a job? In the following blog, Jeff Beaudin shares what he has learned after working with an Explorer.

When I say “Explorer” who comes to mind? Christopher Columbus is the first name I think of, then the Vikings. These explorers ventured into the unknown, crossing seas without benefit of satellite navigation, engines, refrigerated food storage, or radio communication. While many of the crew might have signed on for reasons other than the thrill of exploring, I think it’s a safe bet that Columbus was in his element and would tell us he had a perfect job fit!

Explorers exist all around us and watching them can be very instructive to those of us who prefer the known over the unknown. Explorers in the workplace are often restless in the office, preferring positions that put them “out there”. Explorers love to “bungee” out from home base and return with something new—like people, resources, and ideas. They operate the same way in the job search. I’m working with a new graduate starting his first job search who happens to be an Explorer. Here’s what we can learn by watching an Explorer work:

1.      Hiring Managers have a digital footprint too.  If you’re interested in a potential employer and call to inquire about opportunities or visit their careers webpage you will be herded into the same funnel a hundred other candidates just entered. And you have to do this because it’s part of the company’s process and necessary so they can focus on their core business. However, the real name of the game is developing contacts. Can’t get the contact name you want? Do a people search by company on LinkedIn. Let’s say it gives you a first name and last initial? How about a Google search that includes the partial name/industry/town? Suddenly you get an article that mentions the full contact name which matches a Facebook profile. Explorers take one more step.
2.      Your first target list is anemic. When I ask someone to list 30-40 companies they might be interested in working for I get 30 or less. Our intrepid Explorer came back with 60, and that was only round 1. He had other categories of firms where his expertise and skills would be valuable. His challenge wasn’t finding potential matches, it was prioritizing them! Get your head outside the box. Look at your target list, for example, then look at your targets’ customers!
3.      Avoid the “Shiny Bauble” syndrome.  Explorers so love discovering new treasure that it’s important to check to make sure they don’t forget to do something with the treasure they find. There are countless ideas, strategies, books, and blogs that can help you along but don’t get lost in paralysis by analysis. Pick a few and execute, evaluate your results, and adapt.

*Explorer is a description of a scientifically valid measurement called ROLE which identifies an individual’s attraction to serving a specific need of an organization. If you’re interested in learning your ROLE and how you team, you can do that here.


As founder of LaunchPOINT, Jeff Beaudin has a primarily strong background in sales and sales leadership roles in companies of all sizes in the telecommunications and technology industries. He has built sales teams, led and improved existing teams, and assessed executive, sales, and service teams of potential distribution partners. Since 2010, Jeff has been coaching, consulting, teaching, and training  people how to team well and prosper in business and career. He is one of few people worldwide to hold a certification in Teamability® technology and methodologies from The Gabriel Institute, and he is a certified facilitator and endorsed career coach through Dan Miller’s 48 Days to the Work You Love program. He received a BSBA from Southern Wesleyan University and currently resides in Franklin, TN.

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