Job hunting: Being old school might make you top of the class.

Right time, right place – sometimes there’s an element of luck when we get something we really want. But when it comes to job hunting, there’s also a science to getting a foot in the door, and an art to giving ourselves a step up the ladder.

First, a standout, professional CV that accurately represents you (and sells all your best skills) is essential. But finding ways to stand out may be easier than you think – start by going back to basics. Being seen but not heard might be the preserve of certain social media, but using the direct approach is still alive and kicking in job-hunt land. (And it can earn you swag points with potential employers, too).

Time and time again, the boffins have proven that direct verbal communication trumps e-mail and Whatsapp etc when it comes to getting your message across. So, when you have applied for that job, you have two choices. Sit and wait for feedback, or get up, step up and represent!


So, where do you start?

First, reach out: Pick up the phone, call the person managing the recruitment process and start talking. Apart from having nothing to loose, you have so much to gain! Anyone who dares to be different immediately stands out - and employers want stand out candidates - plus:

Direct communication builds rapport, it engineers trust and develops relationships. So you’ll have a bromance/womance before you know it - what’s not to like? And hiding behind electronic communication sucks: Tackling problems head on is essential in the workplace – and your direct communication with would-be employers demonstrates you have some valuable skills.


What about icebreakers?

Park those questions about how their day is going - make it relevant. Questions about the job, like checking to see if your application has been received or asking about what’s needed for interview preparation are all valid reasons to call. So, once you have a foot in the proverbial door, how do you make the most of this phone call? By getting hold of some intel - because knowledge is power, right?

Ask for an opinion on your chances of success and how may other applications have been received. This will help you understand how competitive your job market is, and also your likelihood of success in similar applications you may make. And, If you’re worried that your skills and experience isn’t a match for the job in question, ask for advice on what you can do to get you where you want to go.


Any other tips?

Try adding the people you speak to to Linkedin. It will help grow your network of contacts and make future communication easier – even if your contact jumps ship. Finally, find out about expansion plans. This will provide insight on the possibility of any similar, future vacancies as well as offering a platform to ask potential employers to store your details for consideration later on.  

Now… get calling!!!