Dear Leah #2: Differentiating yourself as a candidate
How to find a new job after being laid off without cookie cutter advice
“Dear Leah” is my advice column where I tackle questions from the community. It’s a perk intended for my paid subscribers to get more focused, operational advice. Questions might be edited lightly for clarity.
Today’s Question is from James about how to find a new remote role if you’re not well-connected and don’t have ideal conditions to do so.
[…] I would appreciate your advice on how to approach finding a new role after being laid off. I don't have a massive network and I am constrained by living in a relatively remote (from a tech perspective) area and hence looking for remote work.
Any advice you can share with me and with your subscribers would be much appreciated.
All the best
There is a ton of advice out there on how to differentiate yourself and I will try to give you advice that you might not have heard so far.
Let’s get the obvious thing out of the way first. Make sure you take care of some CV hygiene. List your impact and be specific. Don’t fall into the trap of thinking that you shouldn’t limit yourself too much. You compete against other candidates and getting hired means they decide themselves for you despite others.
Not having a job is not a binary thing, we don’t want to have ‘any’ job but facing the situation of unemployment we start to make compromises and land in an opportunity that might not be good for us. It’s still worth it to sit down and take the time to draft a plan. Don’t commit to anything yet.
Split it up into two parts, the start of the funnel and the rest
At the start of the funnel are the things we can do right now. Cadence of applying, how many companies we reach out to, optimizing the cv. Platforms to scour on. This scales directly with the amount of work we invest.
At the end of the funnel are the things we do in case we start to get through. It would be foolish to assume that doing more of the same leads to a different outcome. And the longer it takes us to get a job the more compromises we make and land somewhere where we are miserable.