Friday, February 4, 2011

Pacing Your Follow-up Strategy

One of the greatest mistakes job seekers make is in their follow-up. Most job seekers fall into one of two categories:

1. Those that don’t follow-up often enough - The majority of job seekers don’t follow up at all. When your follow-up is inconsistent and infrequent, you’re simply wasting your both your time and your money [Time is money, after all.] Some hiring managers won’t remember who you are and others will simply regard you as “the occasional nuisance.”

2. Those that follow-up too often. When you send too many messages, you are going to be viewed as a ‘job seeking pain in the neck’ rather than ‘persistent’ and potential future employee.

So, how do you determine the best pace at which to follow up with job your leads? Here are some key, follow-up principles to keep in mind:

  • When is comes to following-up via e-mail, there is no ‘correct’ number

  • Vary your method of follow-up - Go ‘old school’ and use the phone

  • Be consistent

  • Keep e-mail short and to the point

  • Send frequent enough messages to keep your name fresh in your contacts’ minds

  • Be personal, be real and a little entertaining and remember that quality if far more important than quantity

  • Demonstrate that you are also interested in building a relationship and that you are a source for industry news by including valuable and educational materials with your message


A general rule of thumb, job seekers should strike to keep in touch on a weekly basis to maintain a dialogue. Anything more than that and your contacts may have very well have forgotten who you are so when they receive an email from you it appears “out of the blue”

Job Search Tip: Make your job search manageable. Make a list of 50 prospective employers. Split that list into 10 weeks, i.e. 5 follow-ups per week, 1 follow-up per day and make that 1 call per day non-negotiable.

Copyright © 2011, Career Matters. All Rights Reserved.Permission to Reprint: This article may be reprinted, provided it appears in its entirety with the following attribution: Copyright © 2010, Career Matters. Reprinted by permission of Mary Salvino.“Career Matters” is a blog hosted by Mary Salvino, Senior Consultant for SMART Career Planning.com. This blog is dedicated to those who are seeking advice on managing their career and future job opportunities. We welcome readers to share their experiences, post their comments or ask questions about career related matters. For any questions or comments that are better addressed privately, please feel free to e-mail Mary directly at Mary.Salvino@shaw.ca