Time to read: Less than 2 minutes
Many moons ago, I moved to a new city. Starting with grit and my husband's 10 friends, I started a networking campaign to find a job in Human Resources. I had no direct qualifications for an HR role, and a job search coach told me plainly that I had a snowball's chance in hell of getting a job in HR.
Six months later, I had two HR job offers in hand. (And I sent that job search coach a nice "thank you"/"I told you so" note.) The process of creating those opportunities was predictable and surprising. I was discouraged and elated during those 6 months.
Many of y'all have reached out recently in order to create opportunities for yourself. Using my story as a backdrop, here are the 3 surprising steps to create opportunity:
- Get started: Don't subscribe to the false belief that you have to have all your ducks in a row and your story 100% straight in order to start. When I was looking for a job, I met with anyone and everyone. Each conversation gave me a chance to hone the story of what I wanted. The early conversations were awkward. By the time I finally met people with actual jobs, I was crystal clear. Consistent action set me up to be ready for #3.
- Be patient: Creating opportunity takes time. Don't subscribe to the false belief that if you don't meet some artificial deadline, you're failing. Feeling like a failure is a sure-fire way to stall your efforts. There were times during my job hunt when I didn't want to go to parties. I was tired of feeling like the drag with nothing to talk about but job hunting. The truth is, six months is not a long time when you're creating something new. Keep your eye on the prize and take one step forward at a time.
- Wait for serendipity: Don't subscribe to the false belief that your effort alone will create opportunity. Ultimately, the dream job that launched my career in Human Resources didn't come from strategically networking my way to the right person. My job came through a new neighbor when we bought our house. Over the proverbial fence, he told me he was a recruiter for an HR department and offered to take in my resume.
The recipe for creating opportunity is one part effort + three parts serendipity. When you put in the work, the stars eventually align for something magic and unexpected to happen. That you can believe.
With rebel love,
P.S. Know someone who wants to create opportunity for themselves? Forward this email to them. They can join us here.
P.P.S. I'm working on something exciting that will come out later this summer. It's been a while since I've offered anything to all of you and your friends. Stay tuned. The little elves are working on it.