Oh to be loved by your boss or future boss the way you are loved by your family! If only! It’s always nice to know someone has got your back even if you think you don’t need any protection. It’s good to count your family as an undeniable asset especially when looking for your next job. You wonder how Aunt Nellie or Uncle Sam can help you land your next job? Think again! Nothing says love like a well-connected friend or family member particularly if your line of work happens to be in the entertainment industry.
A somewhat sad but true fact is that nepotism does rain rampant in the world of make believe and it’s better to know what you are up against when you apply for your next job or internship. It’s not enough to have the right skill set but it’s even more important to have the right connections. Finding a job is not as easy as it looks and you would think with the advances of technology, it might have gotten easier. Not so. The tried and true, “good old fashioned way” still holds court and finding your next gig is really about being “All In The Family.”
You wonder how you’ll ever be able to compete against the qualified masses applying for the same coveted spot? You may have never guessed you’d be competing against someone’s daughter or cousin who may or may not have worked as hard as you have to get where you are going. It’s true, life in the job lane is not always fair but knowing what you are up against may take the sting out of it for you so you can prepare yourself for your next move.
So how do you compete against someone’s relative for a job you know you want? The simple answer is, you can’t. But what you can do is find someone, anyone, cousin, relative, distant neighbor, someone you meet in line at Trader Joe’s or at the car wash and use your trump card to get an interview. It’s really all about getting your foot in the door and not being discouraged because you lack the relationship pedigree of your counterpart.
Making sure you develop your list of contacts in a creative way even if you don’t have a direct line into a company is as important as any resume you spend good money on having someone write for you. Don’t throw up your hands when someone less qualified lands a job or internship just because their father, brother or distant relation is a senior executive and has clout. Use what you know and WHO you know to leverage your way in no matter what you have to do get in the door.
Your job search may not always be fair, but if you know what you are up against you have at least a fighting chance at getting an interview if not an actual job offer. Having the common sense and professional savvy will get you further along your career search than any executive coach or resume-writing service can ever do. Don’t be afraid; just cultivate your friends and relations in a creative way to get the meeting or job offer you want.