Getting Career Advancements with Some Creativity

I have a great friend of over 10 years, who just got hired in a major multinational corporation in San Jose, California.   It took a few years to get where he is.  It’s a better business card by far and the perfect job title than he had even 4 years ago.  (I must change names to keep things matter of fact, but let’s call him Jonni.) 

Jonni was working the whole time, not looking the past four years for work but only for a short time. He finally got his ideal job at this top-20 company in California which is respected worldwide.

Let’s go over how this happened for Jonni, and me for that matter.  I got an email one day a few years ago, and Jonni asked me to re-write his resume, at least go over it, as he got displaced from a local engineering firm in the north metro that is not well-known, not a multinational.

Jonni needed to get a job, and he enters a temp-to-hire agency with possible permanent placements.  One drawback: change of job title.  A significant move for anyone, in any field.  Jonni was given an opportunity to work for a subsidiary, a company partially owned and operated by the major corporation I mentioned above.  It was not a direct way in, but a sideways manner. So it was like a foot in the door, but not exactly.  It was one foot in the door, and the other outside.  And would it ever change?  There was a high chance it would not change he was told.  So Jonni took the job hoping that a possible job would open up in a few years.  He took that gamble and it worked.

Jonni did take a decent sized pay-cut taking the initial job at the distant subsidiary.  That job title cut from Engineer to Technician from the temp-to-hire agency AND was an even harder blow too, emotionally.   That’s like going from lawyer to paralegal in one fell swoop.  Will Jonni ever get a job as an engineer, again?  Will someone hire me with my degrees with technician on the CV/resume ever?  And it had to happen that way since the job was that, a technical spot.   Jonni took the plunge, jumped in happily, and felt like the opportunity from the agency would be more likely to move towards that Fortune 500 arena.

Here is another amazing fact: This multinational company had an on-going hiring freeze, currently.  Jonni got hired on and was part of the company all along.  At least from HR’s perspective, it was an internal post offered to an internal employee.  Jonni came in the side entryway with a bad job title, back to his original one: Engineer.

He had to face a few ghosts along the way to get to that multinational spot, but at the end of the day, he got his career back on track with a far better job than the one he had 4 years previously. 

Quick notes from this urban job hunting story!

  • Look for companies you would LOVE to work for.  Find subsidiary organizations within the structure that have far-off relationships in your town.

  • Take a gamble at a company even if it is a title change.  It is worth it.  You never know... Temp-to-hire is not that bad.

  • Listen to your gut for a change.  If Jonni took the obvious advice, he would have never had the chance to be hired on by the larger organization.

  • Bypass hiring freezes by working for the smaller distant-off company subsidiaries.

  • Research, research, research the smaller distant-off company subsidiary’s mothership.  You might be very surprised at who owns who.