Researching the Job MarketWritten by Scott Brown
In our last job searching tip, I discussed ways of improving your resume. In that article, I pointed out how networking with other people can help you improve your resume. Once of best sources of advice on improving your resume is from managers who are actually hiring people like you in your field. If you can network your way to meetings with these people, it can be beneficial not just for job leads but also for getting general advice about your career direction.
If you've ever been in a position of hiring employees for a company, you know that you don't look at just skill set of job candidate. You also look at other factors such as their personality - whether it will mesh with corporate culture, and their familiarity with your industry and your business in particular. Hiring managers also look at how interested someone is in their company. A candidate who really wants to work for their company will often be considered more favorably than someone else.
Before going in to an interview with a company, do some research to find out things like: 1. Who company's customers are 2. What seems to be hardest part about attracting and retaining their customers 3. Who their competitors are 4. Why customers use them instead of competitors 5. Why employees work for them instead of competitors
If you know answers to those questions before sitting down with any representatives at company, you will be far more prepared than average job seeker. You will be armed with information that will likely make interviewer want to hire you instead of other candidates. Your knowledge and curiosity about these issues will cause you to come across as someone who's ambitious and a team player. Most interviewers want to hire candidates who are excited about company, industry and special aspects about corporate culture that make it appealing to certain kinds of people.
Finding a job with the right Corporate CultureWritten by Scott Brown
When people look for jobs, they are mostly focused on a fairly narrow set of criteria such as salary, job title, and commuting time. An important factor that most people don't give much thought to until after accepting a new position is corporate culture. While just about everyone who isn't happy with culture of company they work for complains about it after they're hired, very few people examine corporate culture before accepting a job.
CAUSES OF CORPORATE CULTURE
The main driver of a company's culture is its senior management team. These people set stated business objectives. They also set unstated guidelines by way in which they manage people. For example, Jack Welch set a culture of people focused on competition and selling more than competitors when he set a business objective that all GE companies had to be #1 in their markets. Sam Walton set a corporate culture of attention to detail by visiting individual Wal-Mart stores personally and inquiring about minute issues.
COMPONENTS OF CORPORATE CULTURE
Sense of Urgency - While just about all business managers will tell you their objectives are important, there is often a discrepency between what they say and decisions they make. By asking employees to work however many hours it takes to finish projects and demanding that deadlines be met, managers create a corporate culture where performance is highly valued. Many managers, on other hand, put a premium on employee comfort and low stress levels, and therefore do not demand that employees work harder or more hours to accomplish objectives. If you're a performance-minded person, there's a good chance you'll be unhappy in a comfort-minded company. People who are goal-oriented and who are looking to accomplish a lot in their careers, can feel stifled by a corporate culture that does not want to "overwork" its employees.
Business Size - Business size has a major impact on job satisfaction. Working at a large company, you may feel distant from decision making and having an impact. However, large companies generally provide more opportunities for career advancement. Large companies can also provide more social interaction, opportunities for after-work activities, etc.