By Maureen Farmer
How would you feel if you were told that you are required to leave Canada in two weeks’ time if you don’t have a permanent job? Your entire future hinges on your ability to secure permanent employment with an employer in your field and in a tight labour market.
That’s exactly what happened with Hanipe. Originally from Africa, Hanipe came to Canada after completing her combined business and IT degrees in the U.S. With good experience under her belt, and after working in business and lecturing in her field, she felt she was equipped to begin her career. She then earmarked Halifax as her new home where she would launch her career with a robust job search.
I met Hanipe at an event in February of 2012 and believed that after meeting her, she would be swiftly hired by someone needing an expert with her business acumen, technical skills and professionalism—not to mention her global business experience and cultural competence.
I walked away from Hanipe confident that she would be immediately successful. And, then I forgot about her until a mutual colleague contacted me in April of 2013 (more than a year later) to tell me that Hanipe was in imminent danger of having to leave Canada by mid-May unless she had a job because her visa would expire. That was only two weeks away!
Of course, once I learned about this, I had to step in. I asked Hanipe to call me to discuss her challenge. Hanipe was down and out and feeling as though her job search was a lost cause. Most of the interviews she had were positive and employers encouraged her to re-apply at a later time. Ouch. It hurts.
It feels deeply personal.
It feels like rejection.
After brainstorming together and diving deeply into her job search experience over the past 14 months, we came up with a list of employers she had previously interviewed with—the employers who encouraged her to reapply at a later time. There were a dozen of them!
I did a lot of coaching with Hanipe and I suggested that she follow up with each of the employers on that list. She was skeptical, but reluctantly agreed to try it.
After seven days of madly dialing the phone and following up with each and every employer, and then reporting back to me each day, she landed a full-time permanent job in a growth industry in a position in her field and in her chosen city.
She started her new job in mid-May of this year.
Pick it up. Make things happen! This is the tagline for “The Phone Lady”, and it delivers important advice. Whether you are a business owner, a job seeker or simply someone seeking results, the phone is an indispensable tool for your success—hands down!
Maureen Farmer, CRS, CHRP, is Owner and Manager of Word Right Career & HR Consulting and resides in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia.