Marketing You in the Employment Marketplace

You will need to learn to think like a salesperson in order to sell yourself in the employment marketplace. Your first lesson will be to learn to sell yourself to fulfill the needs of your customer. You need to meet customer needs in order to meet your personal needs. Become customer-driven instead of product-driven.

The first step in the customer-driven marketing process is to understand the market in general and what potential customer needs may be. It does no good to have a super product if there is no market for it. There has to be an established need in the job market that is satisfied by the product you are intending to sell.

Do you know your market?

Who are your potential customers?

What are the specific needs of customers in your market?

The next step in the customer-driven marketing process is to develop your product according to the specific needs of the marketplace. Have you developed your product to meet the specific market needs? Unfortunately, many students end up taking a major with little or no thought about their intended market.

The steps you are now taking in your job search will chart your course for the first several years of your career.

While it is not the purpose of this guide to go into the entirety of career planning, I will forewarn you that if you are not able to: (1) identify your market, and (2) identify your product in relation to the market needs, you will fail either totally or partially in your job search. So consider yourself forewarned—you need to have an automobile, a road map, and a full tank of gas before you start on your trip. Most of us plan our vacations better than we plan our careers. The first step in your job search is to plan the direction you will take toward the type of career you will be seeking. If you have no plan for where you are going, any road will take you there. Don't start off your life blindly or in a random direction. Make sure you know where you are going before you start your journey of a lifetime.