In the midst of all this, I took a few minutes a couple of weeks ago to participate in the #hirefriday Twitter movement. I offered to meet with a jobseeker who wants to relocate to the Seattle area. It is my mission in life to know every recruiter in Seattle, so I'm certain I can help.
We met in person at my favorite counter-culture coffee shop. He wore a suit and tie. The first thing I told him was to ditch the tie. We don't do ties in Seattle. (I know -- conventional wisdom is that you should dress up for interviews. You should. But in Seattle dressing up means looking like a Banana Republic mannequin. Ties scream amateur.) Then he told me about his skills and his experience, which were impressive. He has worked for large, complex organizations. He has worked in Asia. He speaks four languages. He returned to school to get his MBA.
Somebody, somewhere, told him to downplay his experience. Since he was an unknown, he would have a hard time getting into prestigious Seattle companies, so he should try to get his foot in the door in a coordinator or junior analyst role.
I told him to rework his resume. Highlight his expertise. Being conversant in Mandarin and being fluent may be different, but his obvious facility for language and understanding cultures makes him an asset to companies. He has skills that 99.9% of the other applicants don't have. I told him to stop going to job fairs and increase his LinkedIn network by 400%. I told him to target companies, and then target jobs within those companies and that together, we would get him in.
I can do this, because I don't have a fancy corporate recruiting job. I can advocate for one candidate. It feels good.
Sharks, be warned. I have a referral for you.