by Kate Wendleton
Today I received a call from a Five O’Clock Clubber who is happily re-employed. She thinks her company could use some of the skills that we teach at The Five O’Clock Club. After all, she said, The Five O’Clock Club is teaching life skills and business skills–not just job hunting skills. So one of our counselors will be running networking seminars for the employees at her company. The methods we teach apply to everyone–whether you work for a company as an employee, as a consultant or as a vendor.
So too, public relations skills are something everyone needs to think about–whether you want to improve your image within your industry or field, or grow a business.
Steve Bolerjack, a former senior vice president at Hill & Knowlton, has been handling public relations for The Five O’Clock Club for a few months and we have been impressed. His insights should be of help to all of you: Every professional, manager and executive is in the business of promoting him or herself. We all have to stay marketable.
Getting Ahead by Staying
Martin, a Five O’Clock Clubber, is a good example. He is the head of the direct-marketing arm of a major not-for-profit. He felt that he was undervalued, and perhaps even being squeezed out. He wanted to get into the for-profit world. To learn more about this target area, his counselor and group at The Five O’Clock Club suggested he read the trade journals, join associations having to do with direct marketing, and get to know people in the field. Martin learned so much in his intensive research that he went a few steps further: he spoke at the association meetings, began writing for the trade journals, and even appeared on the cover of one prestigious trade magazine.
This caught the attention of his current employer, who began to value him much more than before. Coincidentally, Martin’s boss moved elsewhere in the organization. Martin was surprised that he was asked to take his boss’s job. That promotion eased Martin’s pressure to find a new job quickly. In addition, his résumé was looking better and better.
If he decides to look for a new job again, his new title and experience will be a help, as will his new visibility as a guru in the direct marketing field. By the way, he continues to stay involved and improve his career–as well as his worth–at his present place of employment. And he continues to attend The Five O’Clock Club to stay ahead in his field.
Martin did what we all have to do to stay marketable–inside and outside our present companies, and whether we are on payroll or are consultants or vendors. He followed The Five O’Clock Club definition of “job hunting,” which we developed in 1978:
Job hunting in a changing economy means continuously becoming aware of market conditions inside as well as outside your present company, and learning more about what you have to offer–both inside and outside your company.
Now’s the time to take some action. We’ve had a tough job market for the past decade. But in this hot job market, it’s up to you to keep yourself marketable–and be sure you’re getting what you’re worth. Take a look at Nancy Friedberg’s article on Salary Negotiation.
See you next time. Cheers!