Sometimes life just throws one surprise at you after another, and sometimes these are not good surprises either. While I celebrated my new job, Jeff Julian discovered today that he'd been sacked, along with 15 other employees from his company, as part of a big company effort to minimize costs.
The only thing I can tell Jeff is this: It's all for the best. Things might not look it now, but you'll find out eventually that being laid off today, gave you an opportunity to find the job of your dreams tomorrow. And if that job does not work out, that just means you haven’t gotten there yet, but you'll get it eventually.
This is the same thing that happened to me(although I wasn't laid off, I was not too far from it). My last job made me feel miserable and unappreciated because I was assigned to do a job I did not sign up for when I joined the company. In the end, I left, and then looked and looked(for 4 months) for the job I really want, and I found it(hopefully!). So what was it all worth? It was all for the best. It's like I was meant to be dissatisfied with my old company so that I would leave in order to find this job. If you treat it this way, you'll see that everything is much easier. just think of it as a transition period between now and the job of your dreams.
So what now? How do you get that job? Easy. You know you love the technology. You know that you know it inside out(or have the ability to learn whatever is needed to that degree). Now all you have to do is show it to the outside world. And you have at least two tools to do that.
· Get all the MCP and MCSD titles you can get your hands on.
It’s always good to paste that “Microsoft Certified...” logo on the CV. Can’t hurt, only add!
· Make your blog a central point in your resume and presentation.
You are your blog. If you associate yourself with it enough, you’ll be “the dude from the interview who has a site with articles”. You’ll be easily remembered and hopefully sought after. Follow the tips below and you’ll be able to boast about your technical work and accomplishments. Your blog will be one of the most valuable tools you’ll ever own in the fight to get the recognition you deserve in future job interviews.
· Blog early & often
you can't even begin to imagine the amount of impact my blog has helped create for me in job interviews.In fact, my blog was the only reason I'm currently starting a new job at a place I want to work at(funny story on that in a future post). The fact that you have a passion for the technology, so much that you're doing a "site" about it makes you easily one of the best candidates for any .Net job. How many other candidates do this?
This also gives your interviewer a chance to really get to know you even before you get to the first interview! Think about it! If the interviewer researched about you enough and read your blog(because it was on your resume) your chances of getting into that job are much higher. You have the advantage of the interviewer actually knowing you before the interview, and thus feels much closer to you than the other candidates.
· Write articles on your blog
First , you get the added benefit of actually learning very well the stuff you're writing about. Second, you can point those out in your resume. Telling your interviewer "Yeah, I've written some articles on this and that, and I'm thinking about writing an article on that subject, you can see it on my site(not blog!)" makes you look very good and for a reason - you're a hardcore tech guy who actually writes and publishes articles on his spare time. What employer would not like that?
· Put up a picture of yourself on the blog
A picture speaks a thousand words and makes browsing your blog a much more personal and intimate experience. A potential reviewer will immediately be able to feel "closer" to you and even know what you look like before the first interview, making you in a better position then other candidates. Make sure the picture shows you in a relaxed and trusting position, which sends out an "I'm a cool tech dude, and this is my life" kind of message.
- Show the world what you've created
Show the world what you've created so far in your career (if you have anything to show). If you made nice GUIs, try to get screenshots and post about them. You can later reference all that on you blog and just point your interviewer at the link to those examples. Make sure the shots are impressive. If you have no pics, or maybe you've worked on a server product, You need to try and either link to the products you've made(if they are public) or create pre-rendered schemas of how stuff worked there and put links to them on your blog. If your interviewer asks you stuff about "how di that work?" you'll be able to impress them with pre-rendered graphics and diagrams, showing diligence and patience.
- Go to all the user groups you can
Try to get involved with the community. The more involved you are, the more "networked" you get. The more network you have, the easier you'll get personal recommendations and references to job offers who you might never have gotten through regular channels like newspapers. Sometimes people are looking for that special someone, but it's on a back-burner. They won't put up an ad, they'll just tell the employees to be on the lookout for something good. when that happens, you'll probably be one of very few(if any) candidates for a position, which is usually in a company who looks and cares for its employees(it hand picks them, that's a good sign).
That's it. Probably more stuff, but you get the message. publicize yourselves.
I can honestly say that this is what I have done in order to promote myself. This is what I call "personal advertising" .You should be proud in your geekness. People who are proud and boast in stuff they created on interviews are not that common, and if they can back up what they say - they will usually be the more prominent candidates of all. They'll get the jobs because they've proved *real skill* , not just "on paper".