Connecting Quickly

by Danielle Dayries

Background

Claudia is a professional with a background in both university support services and hospital office coordination who recently relocated to Birmingham, Alabama.

Client Objective/Challenge

She was enthusiastic about finding a job in her new community and interested in learning about the opportunities that would be available to her. While job searching, Claudia was living in temporary housing and anxious about settling into a new community. Feeling overwhelmed with all of the changes in her life, she knew that having a consultant who could help her find a new position quickly was essential.

REA Approach

Having previously worked at a community college, her initial focus was on finding a job with a university working in the administration department. Early on, however, Claudia and her REA consultant determined that university jobs in her area were limited, and made the decision to focus on hospitals to find the opportunity that Claudia was seeking.

To help Claudia become involved in her new community and develop professional contacts, her career consultant urged her to network. The consultant worked with Claudia to prepare her with the tools necessary to begin her networking and job search efforts. She started with a targeted resume and cover letter for a hospital office manager position. In the resume, the REA consultant included key words that would call attention to Claudia‘s hospital administration skills and accomplishments. Claudia was relieved to have these important marketing materials professionally crafted for her by an expert.

The REA consultant then provided Claudia with steps on how to network effectively and approach it with the right frame of mind. With her consultant‘s help, Claudia was able to develop a “30-second commercial” to use when meeting people that promoted her as an outstanding candidate in her field. With this 30-second commercial and a good knowledge of networking techniques, Claudia immediately began to openly engage with others in a more confident manner.

Claudia‘s consultant also provided her with a database of hospitals and networking organizations in the area so that she could contact and interact with individuals in her targeted field. The consultant also worked with Claudia to draft a LinkedIn profile that enabled her to access job inquiries, introductions to new business opportunities, and research on employers of interest. Claudia quickly developed a comprehensive list of networking contacts and strategies to maximize each contact. She reached out to her consultant daily to provide updates, and in turn the consultant responded with suggestions to follow up on or improve her outreach efforts.

Outcome

As a result of her networking efforts, Claudia was asked to conduct a phone interview with a prominent local healthcare system for a position that would further her career goals. The consultant coached her on effective phone interviewing techniques and helped her secure a face-to-face interview. To prepare for the interview, the consultant conducted practice sessions with Claudia and suggested questions that she should ask regarding the job. Ultimately, with the help of her consultant and after only one month of job searching, Claudia was able to secure a job as an Executive Assistant in a major division of a hospital. Because she had been having a difficult time adjusting to her new location, Claudia was extremely relieved to find a job so quickly. She expressed her deep appreciation for her REA consultant, whose assistance she said helped her tremendously during a major transition in her life.