Siri, play the theme from Mission: Impossible. We’re about to conduct a secret job hunt!
What’s a secret job hunt? This is a situation when a potential candidate starts a job search and puts out feelers for new opportunities while they’re still employed elsewhere. A secret job hunt varies drastically from unemployment, where candidates may be much more vocal about their interest in finding a new job. Candidates have to be much more subdued and discrete. The goal is to find a new job that is the perfect fit without having your current employer catch on. It’s a hunt that can sometimes take longer than anticipated, which is why it’s key that candidates stay employed with a steady paycheck.
If you’re ready to start your stealth job hunt, you’re also committing to be mindful of your behavior in and out of the workplace than ever before. Here’s a taste at the secret sauce successful stealthy job hunters swear by.
The first rule of Fight Club is not to talk about Fight Club. This is also true of a secret job hunt. Here’s a quick cheat sheet of job hunt don’ts to avoid practicing in the workplace:
The best secret job hunts are conducted from home. Keep them there.
A secret job hunt means taking a variety of interviews, which may range from phone calls to video calls or in-person meetings. Scheduling interviews must be done with a bit of mindfulness. Let’s review a few dos and don’ts:
Most stealthy job hunters are active LinkedIn users. Exercise care with your LinkedIn activity. Employers may notice in their feed a spike in an employee’s number of new HR connections — or if they comment “I’m interested, DM me the details!” on job opening status updates from other connections.
It’s a scenario that happens far too often during a job hunt: A candidate goes on a series of promising interviews. They often begin mentally planning to exit their role, even though they have not yet received a job offer, and start to slack off with their current employer. Suddenly, the interviews come to a screeching halt. Maybe they decide to go in a different direction or announce a hiring freeze. The once-promising interviews are no longer sure things. Worse yet, you’ve fallen behind significantly in your workload.
What’s the best way to keep this worst case scenario at bay? Stay engaged in your existing role. Maintain a consistent, steady workload and even ask if you may take the lead on additional projects. The benefit of doing this is twofold. You’ll maintain your existing track record for hard work and be able to fulfill new initiatives that will help your resume and portfolio to further stand out.
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