These days, the green industry is a tantalizing carrot dangling in front of people who are stagnating in jobs in anemic industries or finding diminishing opportunities while actively job-hunting within their niche.
Over this decade green jobs will open wide, as companies, organizations and all of us as individuals scramble to “go green”.
Do you have the goods to compete for top-level jobs in this emerging, sought-after industry?
You can count on your leadership and management skills to serve you well, no matter what industry, but that may not be enough.
As with any shift in career focus, your green career transition will require special preparation to position yourself as a good fit to recruiters and hiring decision makers assessing you.
A great starting point is Job-Hunt.org, one of my favorite resources for all things job search, for any industry and any professional level.
I’ve included just a few Job-Hunt green resources among these get-started-now suggestions:
1. Identify need and opportunities.
Google relevant keywords to find resources, read relevant blogs, articles and white papers, and set up Google Alerts for relevant keywords. See my Brand-yourself.com post, Use Google Alerts to Amplify Your Executive Brand Visibility and Job Search.
2. Research companies to target and compile a list of 20-30 to work on penetrating.
Your research helps you with market intelligence and due diligence, and prepares you to intelligently communicate with decision makers at each company. See Job-Hunt’s list of 50+ Green Industry Employers.
- Go to each company’s website to find a wealth of information, such as Boards of Directors, C-suite company leadership, and news and press releases. These resources will arm you with market intelligence, help with due diligence, and position you as a well-informed candidate in interviews.
- Research and make a list of key decision makers at your companies of interest. You’ll then work on positioning yourself in front of them.
3. Determine what positions to target.
Job descriptions can provide a wealth of information about the industry, skills/qualifications, companies and their culture, challenges they face, and can help you decide what green jobs may be a good fit for you. Check out:
Use job information to decide whether your existing skill sets are up to snuff and transferrable. You may need to sharpen your value proposition by learning relevant new skills.
4. Learn the lingo.
- See Job-Hunt’s Green Industry Glossary and Guide to Green Terminology.
- Leverage your newly-gained skills and knowledge to market your credibility and viability online. Blog and tweet about relevant topics so you’ll be found by hiring professionals who search online to source candidates.
5. Expand your network.
Do keyword searches on LinkedIn, Twitter, and other social networks to identify thought leaders and subject matter experts. Find out what they’re talking about and involved with, and which resources they rely on.
- Look for your target list of key decision makers at your companies of interest and see what they’re up to on these sites. Join the LinkedIn Groups they belong to and begin contributing. Follow them on Twitter and re-tweet them.
- See Job-Hunt’s list of over 100 Green Industry Professional Associations and Societies, broken down by categories such as Biofuels, Building & Construction, Engineers & Engineering, Health & Medicine, Recycling, Solar Energy, and Wind Power.
How to use this extensive list of professional organizations:
- Connect with and help people in the know in this thriving industry. Get a feel for whether you may be a good fit, too. Identify key decision makers whose radar you want to get on.
- Check out the membership directories to source key decision makers and potential employers.
- When you join a professional association, be sure to add it to your online career marketing communications (VisualCV, LinkedIn profile, web portfolio, etc.). Recruiters and hiring decision makers searching those key words when vetting candidates will likely be led to your online materials.
Your takeaway: Scope out the lay of the land and get your ducks in a row before diving into the green arena.