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I've been an avid reader of "Ask The Headhunter" for a number of years. I've even used all the tips and tricks to beat the opposition. However, I've got a really interesting one and I need some advise...

I heard about an opportunity with a French technology company that is trying to open an office in my local area. Currently, the company operates in Europe and Asia and doesn't have an office in the United States. I have spoken to everyone in my network and unfortunately, I can't get an inside lead in this company. So I started out as just another fish in the sea of applicants.

I submitted my cover letter and resume and sat back to see if I got a response. A week went by and nothing. One of the key criteria for this position was to hire 20 technical people in the first year and another 40 in the second. In looking at the company, I determined that they would need 4 or 5 specific types of people Database Manager, Customer Support, Network Engineers, to name a few. I drafted an e-mail to the original application response address, in which I addressed the above hiring issue. Today I received a reply indicating that they had received my resume along with 700 more.

Right now, I feel I'm in a reasonable position in that I've had some dialog with someone in the company. However, I'm not sure what my next step is. I don't want to just sit there and wait like everyone else. Can you suggest a next step?
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Well depending on the size of the company, try to figure out who the VP is over this area and leave a message. In this market, you have got to stand out from the crowd. Then send that person an email driectly and then follow up again. OR call the CEO if it's a small company. Keeping in mind if the company is European, you may have cultural differences.


Last week I had a phone conversation with a VP of sales. I had talked to him once he sent me to HR (this is a small company) Hr guy was out for a week, called VP back left a msg, he returned the call. I tried to close him for a meeting he said he didn't have my resume, I said i felt based on our conversation, in his gut, he probably knows whether he is interested in meeting. He agreed he was then the the HR guy finally calls me to explain that he is the gatekeeper. ReallY? Too late.

Keeping in mind I am in SALES, this is very assertive and might not fly with technical managers, but then again........

ARe there any other goals in your life where sitting around and waiting actually got you what you wanted???

That's the answer

Cassie
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Cassie,

First and foremost, thanks for the advice. It confirms what I had in mind, but not the specifics of what to say and whether I should stick with my e-mail contact, whom, by the way, I can't attach a position or title. For all I know, it may be the VP of Sales for this area, or the potential G.M. for their US operations.

Of course, the basic tools that should be used in this instance, are either to show how to add value to something, or show them how you can do the job that needs doing. I've actually attempted to do the latter based on my 2nd e-mail to the company. Regardless, both of these approaches are difficult to overcome without specific information, which at the moment isn't available.

Okay, so that sounded negative and I know I have to do something positive, but I believe I have a couple of days before I need to initiate my next foray on this and I'd rather seek advice, than boldly blunder where no man has blundered before. <te..he>

By the way, this company has 3 products, out of which 2 appear to be capable of supporting US companies. These products are specific to healthcare and pharmaceuticals. The company has annual revenues of about $350M per and has approximately 2,600 employees.

So, let's say I do decide to cold call the VP of Sales for this area, what do you think I should say to them?

Oh, and to answer your last question - ARe there any other goals in your life where sitting around and waiting actually got you what you wanted??? Yes, I have achieved one goal that I know of, just sitting around and waiting - my wife gave birth to our son and after initial contact; I sat around for 9 months. <grin>
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I am not sure of the exact job you are talking about.

But VP's of sales or marketing are easier to reach than tech managers.
I thought you were interested in a tech job??

I would find some professional article and send it to a few VP's in an email. More than one to CYA. With a brief email stating why you're interested in the company.
And if you don't know why -you need to figure that out.

Research products, markets, articles whatever you can find that is pertinent. Think way outside the box. That's how you get good info.
If you find something of interest to them, send it as an attachment to an email. Give something, get something back.


What do you say??? Depends on who you are calling. If I was calling the VP of Sales, and I was interested in a tech job, I would throw myself on the mercy of the court and ask him to advise you. "I am really interested in your company because ................... (you better be able to fill this in)

I have been in contact with _________ re ______________ job. Talk to him about the company direction, competition, something first. Would like to get some insight from you regarding the company. Blah blah blah


Oh, btw, is there a senior person in engineering (or whatever this job is ) you can help me get in contact with? Ask for help. Most people not all but most if you ask for "help" help you. Amazing how it works like that

That's how I do it. I can't write you a script but something along these lines.

PS I just heard back from the company I mentioned to schedule an interview. YEAH!! But I could tell the VP exactly why I wanted to sell his product specifically and why I would be good at it. I actually never sent a resume or anything to begin with. But I called him up,caught him (lucky) and said I did. He said he didn't get it but to send it again. (They either lose them or don't read their email anyway)

So when I sent it to HR, he was copied per his instructions.


PS. Haha - I wonder if you wife has the same response to those 9 months
but don't worry, for the next 20 years, sitting around and waiting is no longer an option.

Good Luck

Cassie












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Ok I am going out on a limb, (what's new?)?

Look even if you don't know much about a company you know this much

Companies are interested in 3 basic things. Increasing revenue, lowering costs, and mitigating risk. All companies, all industries.

So, if you can plug what you do specifically into one of these areas, then you sound like a VERY smart person. It's not rocket science. And if they are concerned with these three things, they won't be arouond so it's a mute point.

A friend of mine is a CIO at a brokerage house in NY. I asked him why he thinks MOST/MANY software projects fail. A) Nobody understands why they are doing the projet/ie business impact B) Due to A, defining requirement becomes impossible. NOT easy but simple

Pretty simple right. Most profound things are pretty simple

Cassie
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Oh, and to answer your last question - ARe there any other goals in your life where sitting around and waiting actually got you what you wanted??? Yes, I have achieved one goal that I know of, just sitting around and waiting - my wife gave birth to our son and after initial contact; I sat around for 9 months. <grin>

You dirty old man ;-)
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"A) Nobody understands why they are doing the project/ie business impact B) Due to A, defining requirement becomes impossible. NOT easy but simple"

Yet many CIOs and managers hire people based on the lowest cost rather than best quality, then complain instead of taking action when the people they hire are ambivilent and unmotivated.

As someone mentioned this morning, I quote Bruce Willis from Armaggeddon. "You are looking at 4 billion dollars of high tech equipment built by the lowest bidder"

(Ok, I think I have some *bitter* in my coffee this morning)
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And your point is?
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Well my point was to give an example. Next time I won't bother
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Looks like you missed a thread on this one. The post was in reference to DaveK26's post on 1/25/02.
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Cassie's been on this board too long :-). Her advice is right on the money. Hope she sticks around... :-)

This might help, too, when you get the local VP Sales on the phone. "Look, I don't go job hunting just because I see a good ad. I'm happy where I am, but your company really intrigues me. I'm willing to devote time to pursue this, but I'd really like to talk to an engineer first -- to someone who does the work I do -- before I get involved with HR. Is there someone in your engineering group you can recommend that I talk to? If the technical reasons for pursuing this are right, then I'll talk to HR."

Of course, if the technical contact goes well, you won't NEED to talk to HR...

Go for it. The more you know about the company, and the better your "big picture" questions are, the better. Remember: you're not begging for a job. You're trying to learn more about the company.

Best,
Nick Corcodilos
Ask The Headhunter


P.S. to Cassie -- Good work! Thanks!
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Nick, thanks for the advice.

And thank you too, Cassie.
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