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Kamis, 02 September 2010

Undercover Job Search

You want a new job, but you don't want your boss to know about it until you hand in your resignation. How do you keep your job search a secret? After all, you have a lot to lose if your boss discovers that you are searching for new employment. The company could replace you before you are ready to leave.

Here are some tips for keeping your job search under wraps:

Don't send resumes to blind ads. A woman once told me that her co-worker responded to a blind ad and then was confronted a short while later by someone in the company from Human Resources. The HR professional asked her if she was looking for another job. The woman lied and said no. The HR professional responded, "I got your resume." It turned out that the job that this woman had unwittingly applied for was at her own company.

Be cautious about networking. Only share the fact that you are job searching with trusted friends and colleagues. News of your job search activity could get back to your place of employment, so be sure to network judiciously with people who are trustworthy.

Don't tell co-workers. They may share your secret with the boss. I knew of a woman who told a co-worker that she was looking for a new position, thinking that she could trust this person. She was unpleasantly surprised when a new employee showed up for work and informed her that she was to replace her. When the employee confronted the boss about it, he replied, "You were looking for a new job anyway." It was her co-worker who told the boss about her search for another position. A situation like this can be really devastating in the current job market.

Don't openly advertise the fact that you are looking for a new position on social media. This type of information can be publicly searched. You might not think that your employer is monitoring your online activity, but it is becoming more and more common. Don't take the chance of your posts or tweets being discovered by your boss.

Stash your interview suit in your car and try to schedule lunchtime interviews if possible. Dressing up more than normal can be a real giveaway that you are interviewing for another position. To avoid suspicion, put your interview clothes in your car and change in a discreet location before the interview. It's also a good idea to schedule interview appointments during times when your absence won't raise questions. Taking too much time off from work can signal that you are interviewing at other companies.

Don't use anyone at your current place of employment as a reference. This should be common sense, but if you are asked to provide references for a job, don't use current co-workers or bosses to serve in this capacity. Employers will check your references before they offer you a position, and you don't want to tip anyone in your current company off to the fact that you plan to leave.

Confine your job search activities to your own equipment and your own time. You should never put your work email or work phone number on your resume. Also, you should use a personal email address that sounds professional (i.e., ralphsmith12@gmail.com, not wonderboy@yahoo.com) and list your cell phone number so that communication with potential employers will remain private. In addition, you should use your computer at home to send emails to hiring managers. Using the computer at work is risky since many companies monitor their employees' computer use.

Cheryl Palmer is a certified executive career coach and a certified professional resume writer and is President of Call to Career, a career coaching and resume writing firm. She has been featured on the Wall Street Journal, CNN, MarketWatch, The Ladders, ExecuNet, and Yahoo HotJobs. Cheryl was also a guest on a radio show entitled How to Find a Job Fast hosted by Chris Russell of Secrets of the Job Hunt where she discussed tips for finding employment more quickly in this economic downturn. In addition, she was a guest on WMOV where she discussed networking for your career with host Greg Gack on the radio.

Cheryl 


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