Bulletproof Your Career

by Meg Guiseppi

What many job seekers today don’t understand is that staying employed is very much like running a business. BrandYou need to think of yourself as the CEO of your own start-up company—Brand You—and continuously market, network and strategically position yourself, just as a business does. To ensure you’re ready for the many inevitable shifts and moves your career is likely to make over your work life, adopt a start-up mentality,

Even if you’re not currently facing a job search. Finding a job and staying employed today—two separate challenges—require more effort and strategic planning than ever before. Maybe you think that finding a job in the digital age means posting your résumé to as many job boards as possible, then sitting back and waiting for the interview offers to come flooding in. If that’s how you spend most of your job-search time, you’re setting yourself up for failure, and building a false sense that you’re working hard on finding a job.  The fact is, most jobs are not posted on job boards. The majority of jobs that are filled are not advertised anywhere and not posted on a job board. Yet, most job seekers pay attention only to that small percentage of jobs that are advertised and visible. The rest are part of the “hidden job market.”  And what is the hidden job market? It can be—

. Positions created to accommodate specific candidates, once they connected and spoke with companies’ hiring decision makers.

. Existing positions that open up when an incumbent is replaced with someone better.

. An open position that isn’t advertised outside the company. Only insiders know about it.

. Jobs that, for whatever reason, are not advertised or visible and can only be uncovered and accessed through networking.

As crucial as networking is, along with understanding where to find jobs, these strategies alone won’t bulletproof your career. Understanding how to stay employed will.  Gone are