I am not seeing many jobs in at all in my career field (healthcare provider) advertised in my area. I'm wondering what people think about contacting practices without an advertised position to introduce myself and perhaps be on file if/when they do have a position open up.
I suggest conducting some informational interviews with individuals working with organizations/practices you have an interest. I would use my military background to search for practices with veterans managing or practicing medicine. You have much to offer and better you go to work for a practice you have an interest.
As someone who works at a large healthcare provider, I would say yes - you should absolutely reach out and put your name on their radar. This is a common pathway for how we hire.
I am also happy to hop on a call to support your further - please just let me know:
I am very surprised you are having difficulty in the health care field. That field is booming right now. Have you considered relocating ? Here in NY I see many Hospitals expanding including one near me that just built a $500 billion expansion and plans to hire 1000's. I also see new emergency services clinics open up throughout our County. Have you tried just walking in to one of those to start connecting ? Don't be afraid to ask questions and start networking.
Thank you for your service! I would try this at companies that you think may be a fit even if they don't have any current openings especially small companies. My daughter had graduated with a Masters in Public Health and was having trouble finding a position. She looked at a job that was posted by a small company nearby and decided she the job didn't match her skills. However the company stated on their website they were always looking for talented people and provided an email address for resumes. She liked the company so she sent a resume and cover letter. That was a Wednesday afternoon. They called her back 2 hours later and set up an interview for Friday. After the interview they offered her a 3 month internship because they didn't have any full-time openings. She started the internship a week later and after 2 months the company hired her. That was 5 years ago. It can definitely work!
Thank you for your service. I am a former Navy Nuclear Submarine Officer myself, but my dad was LtCol in the AF so there is a little wild blue yonder in me....
I agree with the others. Take your shot. I think the skills you would have learned in the AF would be of significant benefit to a lot of hospitals, clinics, state and local health organizations right now in dealing with Covid 19. I would use that as a intro to try to get that information interview. ie how can you use your training and experience in pandemic and mass casualty situations to transition to job outside the AF.
I would use LinkedIn as a networking tool and work to locate personnel that
work in the Healthcare world or at facilities that you may find interesting.
Yes, I would try cold calling the facilities that you have an interest in and offering
to forward your resume and I would always start out that the fact that you have recently separated from the service. Most companies jump on personnel that have military backgrounds.
I have been out of the Army since 1999 and things were a bit better at that time
with the job opportunities/plus personnel networking is great. But stay positive with your search and be willing to lean in a slight different direction. Good luck with your search!
in a different direction for a bit... sometimes
It can be somewhat more challenging today because so much of our interactions are virtual. But an effective way to network with people is just to have a coffee talk with them. This allows you to approach someone for advice about how to proceed and people will tend to be more candid. Good luck.
I got my first internship at a design publication because I just liked reading it, and I expressed that enthusiasm and admiration when I reached out. I quickly proved myself and turned that internship into a job.
That is to say, yes, you never know what's out there. I forget the exact stat, but my mom used to work in HR and always said that something like 70-80 percent of jobs aren't advertised. Do your research, have a compelling reason for your interest in the practice—do they do charity work, have a certain specialty, were they on the news... That will give you an in and help you strike a report.
I wouldn't rule out cold calls. Perhaps that would be good to try as you never know what you might catch, but I think it is a poor strategy.
I think it is better to focus on your various networks and spend time with them to identify opportunities where you can get a lead on something that interests you. They will hopefully provide references and you won't be calling cold. If your current network doesn't align with your career interests, then that's where you might do some work.
I hope you are successful.
Yes! Go for it. You have to be proactive and create your own opportunities. Start with informational interviews. Ask for advice, not a job! Good luck!
I've actually had informational interviews where vets or alumni waved me off from the company for cultural reasons or based on an understanding of my career goals. If you can articulate what you're looking for in a role and what you hope to gain from it, that can go a long way.
Shoot your shot! (see profile photo). After all, as the great Wayne Gretzky once said, "you miss 100% of the shots you never take."
Don't let the at times feelings of dejection from lack of responses deter you.
Reaching out is EXACTLY what you should be doing to build your network. Its called information interviews. By having those conversations your finding out about the industry whats sort of qualifications they're looking for in the industry and what would make you relevant. https://hbr.org/2016/02/how-to-get-the-most-out-of-an-informational-interview
Also most importantly don't just look to narrowly connect with an HR professional at a company reach out to mutual connections in the trenches that can let you know who to reach out to in the organization. Some of the best information someone can share is about the culture of a workplace and how to get your foot in the door.
Also remember Linkedin Premium is FREE for up to one year to transitioning veterans. If you have any questions let me know. - Jose R
Hello, Captain Lynn,
First of all, and most importantly, thank you for your service. I have worked in the healthcare field and the medical products industry for most of my career. I currently mentor scientists and physicians who have invented new medical products and want to launch a start up around them, serving as a guide and consultant.
I agree with Jeff Martin's comment, that you target a company or organization that fits the healthcare profile that you want to work in and network with the people who work there. I would discover--and researching their websites is the best means to do so--who their management team is and reach out to those people, requesting an informational interview. I believe that management people in particular, understand the high level of knowledge and intelligence a military officer brings to the table and so I think they would respond in a positive way to your inquiry.
I would also use search engines, like Linked-in, and Monster.com and other career search sites and see the types of healthcare provider jobs that are available. I would think that in the time of COVID-19 there are many, many healthcare provider jobs that are open because the need is so high.
If there is an organization you would like to work for and there are no immediate openings, contact the HR people and see if you can set up an internship in your area of expertise. An internship, hopefully paid, allows you to experience the company or organization and its people up close and personal and that get to learn about about your value to them, as well. It may open the door to a full time job. My son, Sumner, took this approach out of college and was hired for an excellent logistics position at Amazon corporate.
I wish you much success in your career and I hope that you find a position that is lucrative, personally rewarding and brings you happiness.
David F Eastman, MS, CEO, US Navy Veteran
Gamma Therapeutics, Inc. (a maker of diagnostic testing kits)
I’d suggest that you network at the target company or industry. Use LinkedIn to find people already working there and reach out to them. Ask them the process they used to get hired and ask them to help you navigate the hiring process and if they are willing, ask them to submit you as a referral. These activities require much more time on your part but in my opinion would greatly increase your chances for success. Good luck!
I have been a life career coach for almost 10 years. I coach military people, executives and students through transition phases of life. My approaches are real-time solutions and active connections.
To answer your “cold call” question, I find this to not be effective and specially in today’s fast-pace technology information. As a business owner myself, I screen most of my calls.
The best short-term solution that I can give you is to get your resume revised so that it is ATS compliant.
Please connect with me on Linkedin and I can assist you more. https://www.linkedin.com/in/junewebb
Your Health. Your Success. Our Purpose.
Founder - Coach - Consultant
Hi Amy, a proactive approach is an excellent way to be viewed as a viable candidate. Try to meet not just HR folks but department heads of interest. Just ask who they are and get their contact information. Try to meet for coffee and discuss your interest. Good luck!
One other important thing to remember when doing your research is to make sure that what services they provide are within your scope of training and experience. You should develop what is called a 30 second elevator speech (or written note/document) that briefly tells people who you are, what you are trained for and what you have done. Make it brief and to the point. Being in the San Antonio area you might want to google networking groups in your area. There are a lot of retired and ex-military in that area as I am sure you know.
Its a great question and you should go for it. I have found that you can get a 40% response rate with a well crafted note to a CEO or Executive at a company you want to work with in your area. If nothing else, you can also request an introduction to someone they may know that may have an opening. At this level, they are not always going to know all open or planned positions but its better than contacting HR directly. The suggestion is to research the company you want to work with, find the executive leadership on their company website or through published press and contact directly. I have also use LinkedIN Premium where you have a certain amount of messages you can send to folks for an added monthly cost of $29.99. Its worth it if you get the response and connection and a referral. Another option is to see if the company has a network of executive women in place and try those folks. You might also, through your research, see other executive level folks with military background that you can start the conversation that way. Good luck and thank you for your service.
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