In school, were you the one who always had a better/different way of doing things?  When the teacher was explaining that 2 + 2 = 4, were you the one who said the same result could be achieved by adding 3 +1?  Or by subtracting 1 from 5?
If you’re still looking at things a bit differently, congratulations!  Looking at things from an alternative viewpoint isn’t always easy, especially if you’re under pressure to follow a tried and true protocol.  But the “obvious” solution to a problem may no longer be the best solution!  So how do you come up with alternatives?  Brainstorming!
Often perceived as a group activity where multiple minds work collectively to achieve certain results, there is no law that says you can’t brainstorm on your own. As you would in a group, find a place conducive to creative thought and just start writing out your ideas.  When you first start putting your ideas down, don’t stop to analyze them or second-guess yourself, just get the idea out of your head and onto paper or into your computer.
Try to come up with at least a dozen ways to achieve the results you want.  Once the juices start to flow, you’ll be amazed at the diversity of your solutions, some viable, some not.  Some ideas you may be able to initiate immediately, and others may take more time and preparation.   Once you’re done writing things down, then you can more deeply explore your prospective solutions to determine which ones will work best.
If you make a habit of this kind of brainstorming, you will strengthen your creative processes and the new perspectives will enable you to come up with more new ideas, strategies and solutions, generating ideas much faster.
So, how does this apply to job search?
Think of new ways to target the companies and positions that interest you.  Get creative (while remaining appropriate) in the ways you reach out to HR people and others who can help you land a job.  Ask yourself:
Are there unexplored options for making new contacts who might help you get an informational interview, or get your portfolio screened?
Have you discovered new places to network?
Is there something different that can be done with your resume and cover letter to get it seen?
When thinking of position titles you’d like to occupy, have you thought about alternative employers where you skills are transferable?
Are there alternative ways for you to get to work?
Are there places within your geographic region you’ve not explored for employment?
Can you acquire new skills, or improve old ones, to re-emphasize their prominence in your arsenal of skills?
How can you convey to the employer that you are more motivated than the competition to fill their opening?
With the job market increasingly competitive at the moment, you must do everything possible to enhance the (potential) employer’s perspective of the value you bring to her workplace.  And if this means finding new or different ways to make you stand out in the crowd of applicants, then you must find those alternatives.
So, get creative and do it your own way!
Good luck!
To learn more about how we can contribute to your job search and career success, please visit:  hanklondon.com.

By Hank

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