(CareerBuilder.com) — Taking a non-traditional approach to a job search can be a good thing.
Take the case of Alec Brownstein, an advertising professional who found himself looking for a new job last summer. Fed up with the traditional job search, he decided to try an unprecedented tactic.
Banking on the fact that “everyone Googles themselves,” he bought sponsored links attached to the names of top-advertising directors. So, when the directors Googled themselves, Brownstein’s ads would appear at the top of the results page.
The ads reportedly said “Hey, [creative director’s name]: Goooogling [sic] yourself is a lot of fun. Hiring me is fun, too” — and then provided a link to Bronstein’s website. A few months (and only $6) later, Brownstein was employed by top-advertising firm Young & Rubicam.
But, for every unconventional job search strategy that works, there is another that not only doesn’t lead to a job, but is just downright ridiculous. Below, job seekers and hiring managers tell us about the strangest job search tactics they’ve come across.
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1. “One of my clients received the following advice from a previous career coach: Never send a résumé when applying for a job, even when it is requested in the advertisement. Just send a pitch letter requesting a meeting with a company executive.”
— Lavie Margolin, job search advisor, Lion Cub Job Search
2. “I think this may be the craziest one I have ever heard. When I was looking for my first full time job, a friend’s then-girlfriend (now ex-wife) told me, quite seriously, that I could assure myself a job by participating in a magical ritual involving crystals and mystical incantations. I asked her if I needed to sacrifice a chicken as well and she was offended, explaining that it was not the correct type of ‘Magick’ [sic].”
— Eli Lehrer, national director, Center on Finance, Insurance and Real Estate, The Heartland Institute
3. “I think the worst advice I ever saw was in a LinkedIn group. Someone suggested that, in order to be able to get a chance to speak to someone at the recruiting company, you should [mail] a cover letter saying you have enclosed your CV — but don’t enclose the CV, and leave the envelope open so that it looks like it fell out in the post. The logic was that they’d then call you up to let you know, and you could have a dialogue. I personally would just think ‘That person can’t even seal an envelope, I wouldn’t want to recruit them.'”
— Antony, marketing manager