With unemployment hitting a 26 year high at 9.5% nationwide, many job seekers are resorting to more unconventional ways to find a job. I wanted to share  with you these 4 radical ways some people used to find a job.  Perhaps they can also help you think outside the box about your job search efforts.

#1: Work for free  to uncover hidden job opportunities: This is an increasing trend. As it is taking many people 6 months to a year to find a job in today’s market, some began to work for free in order to learn new skills.
Benefit: 1. You can still collect unemployment checks. 2. Learn new skills that helps with your longer term career goals. 3. Much easier to find an opportunity to do this and you would have more options of where to work and what to work on. 4. Could turn into a job 5. Great way to network and learn about cool start-ups. 6. have a great story to tell at job interviews about how you spent your time between jobs
How:  There are 2 ways to find a hidden job opportunities by working for free 1) Find companies you may like to work for based on your interest.  Then figure out a warm connection through your network if you can.  If not, cold call the person that you may want to work for and offer to work for free  2)  Go to start up type conference and meet up and find companies that are interesting.  Start up always need people and don’t always have money.  They will at least listen to your proposal.

#2:Propose radical compensation structures: Stand out in your job application or interview by offering to work for free or for a low stipend first month.  This will give you a leg up against other candidates for an existing job opening.   I know one friend who was sending out resumes and cover letters regularly like everyone else with little success. Then her husband suggested why don’t you say in your cover letter that you will work for free for one month. She tried it and got a lot better responses. Soon she found a job, worked for free for one month and then was paid after that. She also networked with a few other companies who was intrigued by her offer and now has more contacts
Benefit: 1. stand out from the rest in your application and candidacy 2. Give employer a chance to give you a try – an easier sale in today’s market. 3. Much likely to be hired – You have a month to convince the company to hire you. 4. Remember, you won’t be paid anyway if you don’t find a job in a month so this is not a loss but just a smarter way to stand out.
How: Propose this in any communication when you apply for a job (cover letter, email submission, etc..) Also, say it in your interviews when appropriate. You can also think of variation to this – offer to be pay by bonus only the first 3 months only if you perform, etc.. You get the idea. Try anything to get in that door.

#3: Exclude experience to qualify: I heard this on CNN where this guy with a masters degree chose not to list that on his resume because he is applying for jobs that he is overqualified for. He said to be overqualified is also a disadvantage because employers will look at your resume and worry that if they hire you, you won’t stay long if the market gets better.
Benefit: 1. This may not be an ideal job, but you will look like an ideal candidate to the company. 2. Find a job quicker to support you financially and buy you time to find a better job when market gets better
How: Match your resume to the skills they are looking for. Don’t appear over-qualified.

#4: Draw Attention to Yourself with a very targeted Blog: A friend suggested that if you really want to be hired by a company, one of the radical ways to find a job is to start writing a blog about that company and the department you are interested in. Comment on what they are doing well, where they can improve, interview their customers, etc… This is definitely radical, but apparently companies have hired bloggers in house before just to shut them up. Think of the blog as an extended way to show how much you want to work for the company and what you can contribute.
Benefit: 1. Build your writing, creativity, research skills 2. Build your knowledge of the company, their product, services. 3. get noticed and stand out from the masses 4. May get you hired or at least get you an interview
How: Besides what I already wrote above. Also publicize the blog to the company – include it on your resume and communications. If you write enough targeted posts, it will also show up on their radar.

As you can see, people are getting very creative in coming up with ways to find a job. Perhaps some ideas here will help you. Give it a try. You never know. Also, if you know other radical ways to finda job, email me or post a comment so we can share it with others. Good luck out there!  I am always in your corner

– Lei

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