Be sure you aim carefully after firing off résumé 

click to enlarge After you submit your application, make sure to follow up with the employer, even if you don't have an exact email address or contact info.
  • After you submit your application, make sure to follow up with the employer, even if you don't have an exact email address or contact info.

A job-search author from years gone by was talking about following through after making contact with an employer, recruiter or network contact. He was talking specifically about sending out résumés, and said, "If you are not willing and ready to follow through after sending out a résumé, you might as well go to the roof of your city's tallest building and let the wind take your résumés where ever it wishes — it will be just as effective!"

Using a shotgun is effective for shooting geese in flight because it spreads the shot over a wide area, but it doesn't work to just send out dozens, or even hundreds, of résumés, hoping that just one of them hits a willing employer. It just doesn't work. Aim directly at your target, fire, then go back four or five days later and fire again. You have to target your search and you have to follow through!

Dear Mr. Walberg:

When you respond to a "blind" employment ad that doesn't give you a name of company, name of recruiter, or address other than an email address, how can you follow through?

Dear E.M.:

You have an email address, E.M. You can use it more than one time. Wait four or five days after your initial contact and follow up with an email message asking if your first message, and résumé, was received.

Dear Mr. Walberg:

My first contact with an employer was with an online application. How do you follow up or follow through that way?

Dear I.C.:

Use the same site that furnished you the online application. If there is an online address, you can copy and paste a follow up note asking if your application was received and state that you are looking forward to an opportunity to meet in person in the near future. You could even include when you would be available for an interview in the next week.

You must follow up and follow through — if you know you can do the job and believe in yourself, step up your game and go for the win. If you don't, someone less able will beat you to it.

Do what others fail to do!

Marvin Walberg is a job-search coach based in Birmingham, Ala. For contact information, see marvin-walberg.com.

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Marvin Walberg

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