The Kansas City Royals competed in the World Series last year by playing “small ball.” This strategy also had a hand in fans voting a nearly unheard of seven players from the team into this year’s All Star Game – and this “small ball” strategy is something people can use when searching for their next career position.
Jul 17, 2015 /prREACH/ -- The Kansas City Royals competed in the World Series last year by playing “small ball.” This strategy also had a hand in fans voting a nearly unheard of seven players from the team into this year’s All Star Game – and this “small ball” strategy is something individuals can all use when searching for their next career position.
Small Ball The term “small ball” means forgetting the home runs and focusing on just getting to the next base. Six-figure executive job seekers can also use this “small ball” strategy to succeed like no one else in the job market as well.
Job Search Baseball Tammy Kabell, Founder and CEO of the executive career firm Career Resume Consulting, has been using this “small ball” strategy with her top talent job seeking clientele for 12 years. “I’ve always thought of job seeking as being equivalent to playing baseball,” Kabell says. “You have to focus on getting to first base first in your job search, with first base being that all-important phone call from a decision maker, like an employer or recruiter.”
Getting to First Base To get to first base, she says, takes marketing efforts more than anything else, as she promotes her clients like they were products, complete with a value proposition and promotional campaign. “The foundation to using a marketing strategy to get to first base,” she claims, “is to be consistent in your messaging across all channels; your written materials (like resumes and cover letters), your online presence (like your LinkedIn profile) and in what you say when you're networking. It all has to have the same core message.”
Job searching is not a one-step process. The big thing to remember, Kabell says, is that all of those marketing efforts are just to get to first base; the resume or a LinkedIn profile will not get a person the job – it’s only designed to get them the initial phone call.
Second Base Second base, Ms. Kabell says, is getting to the face to face interview. That takes sales psychology, like finding out the employer’s pain points and ‘asking for the sale,’ by asking for that face to face interview. Using a “soft sell” approach and suggesting a time to meet in the employer’s office will more than likely end in a face to face meeting.
Rounding Second Base Running from second base to third base takes advanced sales psychology, according to Kabell. This includes a major amount of rapport building, and even some non-verbal communication techniques. “The most important aspect of the face to face interview, or second base,” she says, “is for the job seeker to present themselves as a relevant solution to their biggest challenges, and if possible, position themselves as an expert.” Employers will pay more for experts than just a qualified candidate, she says.
Getting to Third Base “To get to third base, or the offer,” Kabell adds, “the candidate has to be the answer to the employer's problems and the bridge that will take them to where they need to be.” Even though she works mostly with six-figure earners, she says this framework of looking at job searching as a baseball game, and having the goal to always be just getting to the next base, will work for a professional job search at any level.
Sliding into Home Plate Most job seekers in this economy equate getting the offer to actually getting the job, but Tammy says a job seeker doesn't actually get to home plate without negotiating a package that is right for the company and pays the candidate what they are worth. That takes negotiation skills that mustn’t be overlooked. Her clients can easily get 10-15% more than the initial offer, she says, and she has often seen 30-50% increases when negotiated properly.
With smart marketing campaigns, keen sales techniques and strong negotiations, people in an active job search can find themselves in the All Star Game of their own perfect career by playing job search baseball. Just focus on one base at a time, and career searchers can slide into home plate in weeks, and not months.
Tammy Kabell is the founder and CEO of Career Resume Consulting, an executive career firm that is internationally known for helping six figure clients land jobs fast and shave months off their searches. Tammy is considered an authority in the hiring industry, having been featured as an expert multiple times in The Wall Street Journal, NBC News, Bloomberg Businessweek, Careerbuilder.com, TheLadders.com, Monster.com, and dozens of other online and paper publications. She has also appeared on numerous local and national TV and radio interviews, and is the relied-upon expert in job searching for Fox TV and radio affiliates.