I just completed the job search for the next chapter of my career. After 7 weeks of on-the-ground searching in D.C., I’m joining an education tech startup called STEAM Engine, Inc. as the Product Manager. I’m tremendously happy to combine my passions for education, environmental conservation, technology, and product management all into one job with a mission-based organization. It’s truly a dream job for me.
I know a lot of you are in the process of looking for a new job, or are thinking about looking for a new job, so I’m putting together a series of posts to share my process in the hopes that it helps you. To kick that off, I want to loudly and clearly dispel a common rumor: networking is tremendously helpful but it’s not the only way of finding a new job.
I found the role for STEAM Engine on Indeed.com. I sent my resume and cover letter via email as stated in the job description to the recruiter running the search. That’s it. I didn’t know anyone at the company nor did I know the recruiter. No one lobbied for me to help me get an interview. Would that have helped if I did have a connection? Maybe, but it wasn’t a requirement.
So, if you know what your dream job or dream company is and don’t have a connection there, don’t be discouraged. An inside track isn’t the only way to get your dream job. There are many ways it can happen, and passion and determination can take you there.
I was very fortunate to find quite a few jobs and companies that interested me here in D.C. The market is very strong, and opportunities are everywhere. I spent at least 6-8 hours a day every day on my job search, and most of that was done online. Here are the sites I regularly reviewed to find jobs that interested me:
Alumni websites for my alma maters (Penn, UVA, and Darden)
All of these sites gave me the option to set up alerts based on parameters I could customize. I reviewed these alerts daily to stay on top of any new openings. It also gave me the chance to see which companies were hiring so even if a role wasn’t a fit for me, I could click-through to the career section of the company’s website to see if they had another role that was a good fit for me.
Tomorrow, I’ll write about how I got clarity on the kind of role and company I wanted and how I explained my goal to others. I’ll also share some resume and cover letter tips that also helped me in my search. Got job search questions? Please send them over. I’d love to help in any way I can.