A Secret Strategy for Using References to Land Jobs

What’s the most annoying part of writing your resume? If you ask 10 of your friends that question, I’m willing to bet that at least eight of them will answer, “Asking people if I can use them as references.”

There’s no doubt that getting people to be your references is kind of a pain. You have to think about who would be best to ask. Then you have to call them up and ask if you can add their names to your resume. Then after you go to an interview, you need to call them up and explain that the person who interviewed you might be calling them to ask for a reference.

References Are a Pain, But They Can Help You Land Jobs. . .

Did you know that if you use references the right way, they can make you stand out from all the other people who are applying for the jobs that you want? Here’s the secret strategy to use:

Introduce your strongest references at strategic times during job interviews

Here are some examples:

When you’re talking about a problem you solved on your last job, say, “Would you like to talk to my former boss about how we pulled together as a team to solve that problem and what I did? Here’s her number.”
When you’re talking about an experience you had when you were in the military, say, “My commanding officer has just come back to the States from Iraq and I know he would be happy to talk about my service there. Here’s his number.”
When you’re talking about community service, say, “I know my minister would be excited to tell you about all the work we did renovating houses for underprivileged families. Let me give you her number.”
This strategy brings your activities to life in the eyes of interviewer, shows that you are truthfully describing your experiences, and more. It will also make your references come to life and become much more than names listed on a sheet of paper.

If you try this approach, it will produce great results. Be sure to check back here often for more strategies for powerful job-hunting.

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