close

Privacy guaranteed - Your email is not shared with anyone.

Stopping by some offices this week to look for a job, any advice?

Discussion in 'The Okie Corral' started by hpracing007, Aug 20, 2012.

  1. hpracing007

    hpracing007

    Messages:
    4,670
    Likes Received:
    7
    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2006
    Location:
    TEXAS
    Time for my yearly or so thread seeking career advice :wavey: For those who remember, I resigned a year ago, started a business to invest my own money and signed up for the CFA program. Well a year has passed, did pretty good on the investment side and passed the first 2 levels without a hitch :dancingbanana:

    Well now I need a job, financial analyst would be ideal. I've been applying online and going to network events, mainly alumni meetings, without much luck.

    My plan is to dress up, have a list of employers who might be interested in me, resumes/coverletters in hand, and just visit each one. Especially the ones I applied to before but haven't heard back on yet. I plan to just walk in and ask to speak to the person in charge of hiring and if I can get them, make my pitch. If not, leave a resume/cover letter and thank them. Going to hit up the big cities in TX.

    Anyone every done anything like this with any success? Any tips? Thanks in advance!
     
    Last edited: Aug 20, 2012
  2. INJoker

    INJoker Simply Charming

    Messages:
    4,883
    Likes Received:
    1
    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2007
    Location:
    Indiana
    1. Make sure your cover letter, resume and reference list look stellar.

    2. If you can get recommendation letters from former employers, do it.

    3. Wear your suit around for a day before you do this. A lot of times people aren't accustomed to dress clothes and they feel awkward in them when they show up for an interview. You don't want to project that image.

    4. Do your homework ahead of time. 9/10 times you don't want to talk to anyone in HR. You're going to want to talk to the CEO, CFO, GM, Division Manager or Controller. If the organization has a VP of Finance, you'll do well to talk to them too.

    5. What you're about to attempt is more "sales" than interviewing. You need to have a compelling introduction and hook for them to give you the time of day. It seems counter-intuitive, but during a recession a lot of companies are actually having a hard time finding good people. A lot of the talented individuals have retained their jobs or when they do get laid off, they're picked up by someone else shortly thereafter. Present yourself as competently as possible.

    6. Don't try to make up a fun story about why you've taken a year off. That's your talking point. Tell them you are a self-starter and you wanted to get into finance. Tell them you're willing to take your knocks and put in your time, because you've invested in yourself and now you're hungry to put the skills to work.

    7. Even if you can't get in front of the A+ decision-maker, be nice, cordial and professional to everyone you meet. You never know when the "secretary" you're talking to is the administrative assistant that's been working for the CEO for 20 years, etc.

    8. Get a nice tie. I like the Donald Trump ties, myself - Obama blue or dark red. Make sure it is very thick material. Learn how to tie a Windsor knot (not a Half Windsor, a full Windsor - contrary to popular belief, there is no such thing as a "double Windsor"). You literally want this Windsor to be so tight you can bounce a penny off of it and as thick as a golf ball. A well-done tie knot and well-shined shoes tell people you are damned serious.

    9. If you have a decent watch, wear it. If you have a Timex, go without.

    10. Wash and vacuum your car the day before. From the second you pull onto the lot until the second you've driven off out of site, you're "on."

    Good luck.
     

  3. hpracing007

    hpracing007

    Messages:
    4,670
    Likes Received:
    7
    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2006
    Location:
    TEXAS
    Thank you for your post INJoker! Especially the details, right down to the best tie knot; I'm very grateful.
     
  4. JW1178

    JW1178

    Messages:
    2,548
    Likes Received:
    407
    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2009
    That's the way to get jobs! I hear people all the time talking about they can't find a job, but all they do is either fill out apps online, email the resume, or they just turn in their app and/or resume to someone at the front desk and walk out. You want to go to someone who does the hiring and shake their hand and show you are interested and you are someone they want to deal with every day. Etiquette is almost a lost art now adays, so if you have it, it gives you a big leg up. Even if they use an online company or do things offsite it makes an impression.
     
  5. kbm54

    kbm54 GTDS Lifetime Member

    Messages:
    6,139
    Likes Received:
    157
    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2010
    Make sure your resume and cover letter don't contain any grammatical errors. :whistling:

    ETA: Seriously though, good luck. :wavey:
     
    Last edited: Aug 20, 2012
  6. Rabbi

    Rabbi The Bombdiggity Lifetime Member

    Messages:
    28,107
    Likes Received:
    11,643
    Joined:
    Dec 18, 2004
    Location:
    San AntonioTexas
    That is pretty good stuff.

    Aside from all that....I would condense it all to:

    Dont you know anyone?

    Seriously, in your travels, education, business... didnt you meet anyone? Call those people. That is the real reason people go to Harvard.
     
    Last edited: Aug 20, 2012
  7. INJoker

    INJoker Simply Charming

    Messages:
    4,883
    Likes Received:
    1
    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2007
    Location:
    Indiana
    I bailed on a cake, lower-paying job to get into sales.

    On the side I help college kids write resumes and get interviews.

    What you're doing here goes above and beyond what 99% of people "looking for a job" will actually attempt.

    The very fact that you're taking this approach will tell a lot of folks all they really need to know about you.

    Just keep kicking doors down until you start clicking with people.

    Don't be afraid to negotiate with them a bit, either. Remember: you're LOOKING for a job, not BEGGING for a job. :cool:

    A few other hot-winded sales tips:

    1. Keep the following items in your car (out of sight, of course) at all times: toothpicks, dental floss, tooth brush, tooth paste, chewing gum, bandaids, tweezers, nail clippers, duct tape, lint roller, spare phone charger, road map

    2. Keep all of your papers/paperwork in a protective case. Nothing says "slob" like wrinkled corners or water droplet stains on a piece of paper

    3. For extra effect, use a blank sheet of paper and write your signature about 50 times until you find one that doesn't look like ****. Scan, copy and paste it onto your cover letter (use formal letter style, APA).

    4. Include your contact information as a footer on everything you give to anyone - your letter, resume and reference list.

    5. If you don't have a LinkedIn account, set one up today and complete it 100%.

    6. Your chances of scoring are highest between 7:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m. and you will get more business done over a meal or a beer than a conference room table. If I were you, I'd see if you can bring breakfast (doughnuts and coffee) into a couple of these places and lunch (Chick-Fil-A is a big hit) into a couple of others. I also network that way in general. I take people out for beers that I have no intention of selling to and/or working for - just shoot the **** a little bit and see where it goes. They likely know someone who can help you.

    7. No matter how old you are or whatever, unless specifically told not to, refer to everyone you meet by "Mr." or "Ms." if you know their last name. I refer to all women as "Ms." even when using their first name - i.e. "Ms. Stacey" or "Ms. Katie."

    8. Biggest cliche in the world... but... Just be yourself.
     
  8. INJoker

    INJoker Simply Charming

    Messages:
    4,883
    Likes Received:
    1
    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2007
    Location:
    Indiana
    One last thing...

    Sign up for a half-assed-decent Gmail account or whatever too. If I had a dollar for every person I saw that was like "Adam_B76389@safehouseworldcenter.net" or "moonlightrisingswan@poetry.hotmail.com" I could retire right now. Gives me a migraine.

    "adam.bates@gmail.com" or "abates@gmail.com" or "adamb@gmail.com" says "I'm professional, value my image and don't live in my parents' basement."
     
    Last edited: Aug 20, 2012
  9. INJoker

    INJoker Simply Charming

    Messages:
    4,883
    Likes Received:
    1
    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2007
    Location:
    Indiana
    Ding! Ding! Ding!

    Very well said, Rabbi. Much more concise... :cool:
     
  10. GlocknSpiehl

    GlocknSpiehl NRA Life Member

    Messages:
    2,842
    Likes Received:
    592
    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2002
    Location:
    Miami, FL
    Print up business cards with your info on it and have them done as high a quality as you can afford. Have them in a sharp, professional card case, ready to hand out.

    Be polite, professional and courtious to everyone you meet. Many companies will ask everyone you interacted with on their property how you were. If you were rude to the guard, or brusk with the receptionist, kiss your chances good bye.

    Practice an "elevator pitch" where you can describe yourself and how you can contribute to the company. It should be minimum 30 seconds in length and definitely no longer than 2 mins. It should sell you enough that the person would want to know more about you and your qualities/qualifications.

    Research your target! Know about the company, its goals, corporate structure/ethos, etc. This shows that you are interested and have taken the time to find out about them and how you can fit in.
     
  11. hpracing007

    hpracing007

    Messages:
    4,670
    Likes Received:
    7
    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2006
    Location:
    TEXAS
    Great advice from all, will keep it all in mind.

    As for knowing someone who could help me... I don't know anyone. I'll take responsibilty for the networking fail. While I didn't do any networking while at school, I have really tried after graduating by going to events and stuff. No good leads. Also, I'm also trying to relocate to a different city for personal reasons so that doesn't help matters.
     
    Last edited: Aug 21, 2012
  12. JMS

    JMS 02

    Messages:
    16,100
    Likes Received:
    7,929
    Joined:
    May 6, 2007
    Edward Jones
    Ameritrade

    etc, seem like pretty common stops most people make to pay their dues in the CFA industry.
     
  13. hpracing007

    hpracing007

    Messages:
    4,670
    Likes Received:
    7
    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2006
    Location:
    TEXAS
    Update:

    So last thur, I went out and tried it out. Researched my targets. Printed out personalized cover letters/resumes and hit up Austin/S.A. (trying to relocate from houston).

    I noticed 2 things:
    big firms will not let you in.
    little firms' management/hr dept (same) is never around, or so they say.

    In sales they say, either you sell them a yes, or they sell you a no, and maybe i'm a terrible sales person but I didn't sell a single thing that day :(

    This is how bad it was... I even walked into a random staffing firm at the end of the day, who specialized in accounting/finance. Gave them a copy of my resume and they said it was impressive, to call them if they don't call back. They didn't so I did. They asked me some questions said they'd call me back by the end of the week, never did!

    So, going to regroup and try again. Even thinking about taking off the gloves and going the actuary route but I dunno...
     
  14. NEOH212

    NEOH212 Diesel Girl

    Messages:
    8,983
    Likes Received:
    20
    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2008
    Location:
    North East Ohio
    Make sure you take a bath and wear a clean pair of underwear.

    :supergrin:
     
  15. Mrs. VR

    Mrs. VR Sharon, you will be missed.

    Messages:
    26,375
    Likes Received:
    930
    Joined:
    May 18, 2004
    Location:
    On the way to crazy
    Just saw this this morning and I gotta be honest, when I was working ( granted, That was about 16 years ago) it was the receptionists job to keep uninvited visitors away from the execs. No appt, no visit, and it marked them as a PITA. I suppose it really depends on the individual company. I hope you have better luck!
     
  16. Geko45

    Geko45 Smartass Pilot CLM

    Messages:
    18,398
    Likes Received:
    2,504
    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2002
    Location:
    KCXO
    *shudder*

    Definitely wear pants. I've learned that most companies are pretty serious on this point.

    :whistling:
     
    Last edited: Aug 27, 2012
  17. Z71bill

    Z71bill

    Messages:
    17,452
    Likes Received:
    5,032
    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2007
    Location:
    Texas
    Make sure your zipper is "zipped up"

    People hate to see their financial planner with their zipper down --
     
  18. Z71bill

    Z71bill

    Messages:
    17,452
    Likes Received:
    5,032
    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2007
    Location:
    Texas
    Would Capris & long socks (no leg showing) be OK?
     
  19. Hamguy

    Hamguy

    Messages:
    327
    Likes Received:
    4
    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2011
    While I give you kudos for taking the bull by the horns and hitting the bricks (sorry for the cliches), I'm surprised that you thought for a second that you were going to be able to just walk in and talk directly to the people in charge of making hiring decisions. I used to be an IT manager and I got calls constantly from IT service and equipment vendors wanting to sell me stuff. I have never, EVER taken a meeting with anyone who showed up uninvited.

    I actually had one job candidate who waited in the parking lot at 5:00 and asked everyone walking out the door if they were me. When I finally left for the day at 6:00, this joker accosted me as I was walking to my car (I thought he was a process server!) and tried to get me to set up an interview right then and there. I told him I'd look at his resume (it was crap) and get back to him, which of course I never did. I also told the receptionist to be on the lookout for the guy. *I* set my schedule, not YOU.

    Best advice I can offer is set up coffee/breakfast meetings with recruiters that specialize in your field. Work with 3-5 recruiters who will be looking for jobs for you. Skip the internet job boards. Every one of those job postings (and many are not for real jobs, just recruiters looking to add to their resume database) will get hundreds of responses, and they'll never reply back to you.

    Good luck!
     
    Last edited: Aug 27, 2012
  20. puckhead

    puckhead

    Messages:
    1,318
    Likes Received:
    15
    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2009
    Just a question from the outside, where do you go about finding and contacting these recruiters? Just curious. Thanks!