By far, one of the most common questions that I get from coaching clients is regarding how to job search without giving away that they are job searching. LinkedIn and other social media platforms make this particularly challenging. If there’s any benefit to being unemployed, at least you don’t have to tiptoe around the fact that you are actively looking.
Here are my five fabulous tips for launching a confidential, but effective job search:
- Don’t show your connections on LinkedIn. Part of your job search strategy should be connecting on LinkedIn with hiring managers and recruiters at your target companies. If you are connected with your boss or co-workers on LinkedIn, they will be able to see your connections and you may not want this. Go to your privacy settings and make sure that only you can see your connections.
- Don’t share profile changes when updating your profile. Most people that I work with prefer to turn this feature off. I may be one of the only people who keeps mine on! If you don’t want to draw attention to yourself as you update your profile, feel free to turn this off.
- Share your “career interests” privately with recruiters. About a year ago, LinkedIn created a feature called Open Candidates that allows you to privately share that you are looking for work with those who have a LinkedIn Recruiter account. Nothing is published on your public profile and your present employer is excluded. To try it out, go to the Jobs tab and click on “Update Career Interests.”
- Rely on your network. I’m sure I sound like a broken record sometimes when I stress the importance of relying on your network and people that you know to connect you with opportunities. It becomes even more critical to do this when you are trying to do “low-tech” job search and not broadcast your status online. Schedule phone calls, lunches and coffee dates with people that you know when you want to have your job search conversations rather than using social media.
- Do not use your work email or computer for job search activity. This one sounds obvious, but it’s not. More people use their work email and work computers for job searching that you would ever think. There is no guarantee of privacy this way because many companies monitor activity. Don’t take any chances here!
Okay, now that you have my fabulous five tips, go out there and slay those dragons and land your dream job!