In her first two weeks at home, Ella got her entire head stuck in the baby gate 3 times. Once was frightening, twice was hard to believe, but after the third time, I realized that she doesn’t have any sense of consequences. She just acts without any kind of planning. In short, she doesn’t have an exit strategy.
Most of us resemble Ella more than we care to admit, especially those of us who have PhDs. We don’t tend to plan what we will do until we are downsized, can’t stand the idea of going to work in the morning, or (perish the thought) graduate with our degree in one hand and nothing in the other. Whether you are looking to leave a current position, or are planning to leave your career track, you can begin to develop your exit strategy long before it’s time to say your goodbyes.
About 7 years ago I made a potentially big career mistake. I saw a posting for a newly created management role in the department where I work at McMaster, but I didn't apply for it. The job description focused on the administrative components of the role rather than the professional/managerial aspects. Instead of asking someone for a fuller description, I passed on applying. I couldn’t reconcile having a PhD and spending my day answering telephones, taking messages and filing. Yes, the job description was poorly written, but I didn’t bother to investigate further so the bulk of that mistake falls on me. I don't regret not throwing my hat in the ring, but I've learned since then to ignore my ego and to understand job descriptions better.
Are you missing out on potential opportunities because you think the role is beneath you or your abilities? Read on for some surprising facts and strategies to help you curb your inner job snob.
If at least 80% of jobs are never posted, how do people get hired? The hidden job market is like the secret underground for jobseekers and everyone wants to get in, but most people don’t know how. I think that’s because we don’t take the time to look for the easiest solutions, like employee referral programs.
Employers love ERPs. They cut the financial and time investments of hiring, provide the employer with a wide pool of candidates who are easily vetted, and make existing employees happy because they’re able to help friends, family, professional contacts and themselves by earning a bonus. Plus, research shows that referred employees have a stronger understanding of the organizational culture, better skills, and a tendency to stick around longer than a year.
So how can you take advantage of ERPs?
This weekend I spoke about hiring and recruitment at the Beyond the Professoriate conference (#beyondprof on Twitter). I love giving presentations, but what I love even more is the opportunity to surprise people by making them think differently about their career strategies. If you’re trying to advance, change, or break into your career, here are some thing you might want to consider: