Workwrite Resumes

Find a Company: Prepare to research companies you might want to work for

Don't settle for finding a company that wants you. Research companies to find those you want to work for.

Don’t settle for finding a company that wants you. Research companies to find those you want to work for.

Now that you’ve recovered from the shock of not relying solely on online applications for your job search, made your list of criteria for your ideal company, and dispelled the myth of keeping ALL your job search options open, you’re ready to do some research. (If you haven’t completed those tasks, start here.)

You’ll need to use two kinds of research:

  1. Reading through online and print information about companies.
  2. Asking people their opinions of a company.

Beside each item in your lists of criteria, indicate if you will research this item by reading or by asking.

These factual items are likely to be found on the company’s own Web site, on a map, or in some other reference material. The reference section of your local library holds a goldmine’s worth of company information. (If you don’t know how to find it, ask the Reference Librarian, right after you bow or present flowers, your choice. They’re that helpful.) For each company you’ve listed, find out:

  • Size:
  • City, State
  • Type of geography (ocean, plains, mountains, urban):
  • Industry:
  • Commute:
  • Compensation: (Use Salary.com.)
  • Add other items of your own.

These more specific and opinion-based items are better asked of someone who knows about the company because they work there, have worked there in the past, or work for a competing company.

  • Type of Co-workers (Would you be working with truck drivers or astrophysicists?):
  • Type of professional relationships (Do you work individually, on teams, with customers, etc?):
  • Ideal type of boss:
  • Hours of Work / Flexibility of Schedule:
  • Advancement Opportunities:
  • Creative Opportunities:
  • Health Benefits:
  • Other Benefits:
  • Profit Sharing:
  • Lifestyle considerations, work-life balance:
  • Work at home:
  • Other:

From your “Ask” items, create questions to find out whether the companies on your list meet your criteria. Here are some samples. Add your own.

  • Type of Co-workers
    • What positions do you work closely with?
    • Where are they located?
  • Type of professional relationships
    • Do you work on a team?
    • How many members?
    • What positions are represented?
    • Are there also individual contributors?
    • How are you supervised?
    • What is the organizational structure like?
    • How collaborative are the relationships?
  • Type of Boss
    • How would you characterize your supervisor’s management style?
    • How would you describe the CEO’s leadership style?
    • What makes you choose that style?
    • Would you say most people like working for this CEO?
  • Hours of Work
    • How many hours is your typical work week?
    • Do you work overtime?
    • Are you paid for overtime?
    • Can you work from home?
    • Does anyone work from home?
    • How often?
    • What is the attitude toward co-workers who work at home?

If you’ve given up on your job search because of frustration with online applications, contact me today to talk about a type of job search that can actually get results.


Find a Company: Your job search is really a company search

Find a Company: How to discover companies to consider

Find a Company: Narrow your choices BEFORE you apply

Image courtesy Stuart Miles at freedigitalphotos.com

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