Class Two: Finding Your People
Once you’ve created your Dream Company List, the next assignment is to start researching the people who work at these companies. It's important to find out if you think you'll actually like working there before you call it a "dream" company. You can start by researching the CEO or Executive Director and find out as much as you can about them as a leader. Then you can research the people who would work in your department or who would hold your job title. Next, you can start answering questions about what it would be like to work there (How many people would be in your department? Who would be your boss?) You might be surprised about how much you can find out about a company before you even talk to them.
Find People to Help You Find Your Tribe
Hiring Managers: The most direct route to connecting with someone who could hire you in the future is to contact the a hiring manager at a company. It doesn’t hurt to ask - they will ignore you or say no if they’re really not interested. Make sure to keep communication short. Emphasize the fact that this could be a quick meeting and mention that you understand that they are probably busy. Remember that they may be hiring at some point and you have a chance to be the person that they think of first for that job. You'll want to make a good impression that's brief, but demonstrates your value to the company.
Future Co-workers: This group of people may be more accessible than hiring managers and may have more time or be more willing to help you since they can see themselves in your shoes. Depending on how responsive they are when you reach out, you can offer to take them out to lunch or coffee and ask them questions about how they got their job at the company and if they have any recommendations for potential opportunities for you.
Recruiters: Find a recruiter who works in your industry or works for a company that you’d like to work for. Recruiters can be the best resource for your job search since their main goal every day is to find people to interview and eventually get hired at their company. Recruiters are usually busy and overwhelmed with candidates so they may not be interested in lunch or coffee, but they may be available for a conversation about how to get a job at that particular company.