I have spent some time looking for a job in Barcelona and as I have already told you in my last post it can be difficult. After I gave you the general tips and tricks that I found crucial for me to find a job I would like to share how they played part in practice.
The first trick that I mentioned – translating the CV in Spanish, I sadly discovered a bit too late. Yet, as I started to send my Spanish CV around I did notice an important increase of replies in my mailbox.
I was very fortunate during my job search to contact, Talent Search People, a recruitment agency for an internship position that they offered. As Spanish was a challenge I was very happy to discover that there were places in Barcelona where I could be taken seriously speaking in English.
I had seen the ad of Talent Search on a job portal. Yet, I did not submit my CV as the company requested me to. Rather, I found them on the internet found the job offer that they had and I was interested in, studied well the specifics and then contacted the director of the company – Jan Van Schaik. As I was still learning how to do things I missed the step of developing a relationship with someone working in the company, but nevertheless, I knew very well whom I was contacting, why I wanted to speak with him, what could his benefit be of speaking with me and even better, all those in English.
Mr. Van Schaik´s quick reaction came as a shock to me as I was already used to the one month tolerance period (aka ¨waiting in the dark¨) that Spanish need. He, however, being from the north, wanted to see me now!
I went back home to reread whatever it was that that job required and guess what, between reading the job description, the company history, where it is located, how do I get there, and how do you pronounce the director´s name, I was hardly in a condition to go to an interview.
As I went, we sat and we taked. Then came a Danish girl to test my level of French and then they told me they will contact me in th enear future. Yeah, right, I thought. Its just a nice way to get me off their backs. But it was not true. They did call in 2-3 days to tell me I did not get the position.
Yet, I felt relatively confident since I have had a very nice conversation with Mr. Van Schaik and I think that we clicked quite nicely. Thus, I added him on LinkedIn.
I went along minding my business looking for a in Barcelona, knowing English, Catalan and French. Yet, I did not lose contact with Mr. Van Schaik. And that might sound like tons of work but in reality it is much more simple – monitoring the status changes of your contacts, commenting here and there, sending a Congratulations note for an occasion, etc.
In my case, I saw a status change one morning by Mr. Van Schaik, saying – ¨I have so much work and no time¨. Wow, lucky him, I thought, and I dont have any job. So I posted a comment asking him if there was anything I could do to help. He said No. But the next day he came back to me with a thought – ¨I think we might have a project that we start now, it may be is in your field. Are you interested to talk about it?¨ Hell, yeah! 🙂
Although it sounds like a bunch of roses, that was how it started. Then I went to talk. Later I was invited for an interview, in English. Then I was told – We will call you. Then they did (how I like the Dutch for that quality of theirs). Then I went in for a second interview… in Catalan… That went ok and they called me several days later – I went for a third interview in Spanish (me no speak Spanish!… well, not too well at least). That went decent. Then a week later they called and they said – Ok, its gonna be you!!!
And it all began with a LinkedIn status update.
I am not saying social networks are the ultimate cure for all. Neither does it work always. Neither is it the only effort that you have to do. On the contrary, social networks put you in a society, and with contacts but what you do with these contacts and connections that you might have established there depends completely on yourself.
It might look easy to you. And in a way getting in touch was. Yet, delivering what you promised you can will always remain a challenge left to knowledge, abilities and chance. Yet, now you have the tools to improve your chance 🙂
Use it 🙂