Q. I have been contacted by a firm that promises to market my skills to companies. They claim to have many contacts with local companies. I’m not sure it is worth the cost. Any recommendations regarding using someone to market me?
I have two words for you, BUYER BEWARE. Too often these firms claim a lot and deliver very little. Since they contacted you, that is a red flag and you need to do your research. These firms always spring up in times of high unemployment.
Some things to consider before writing a check include: Are they claiming or even implying they will find you a job? If this is even implied, run and run fast. Do they claim to have access to the “hidden job market?” Have them provide references of other candidates they have worked with that are now working due to their help. If they are as good as they claim they should have a list of raving fans. You should speak with people currently in the program. Contact the Better Business Bureau to check on any complaints. If they claim they have companies they work with regularly ask to speak to someone at the company. Don’t accept any excuses for not being able to do this. Do they offer a money back guarantee? Ask to speak to someone they actually refunded the money to. Don’t accept that they have never had to give a refund. No one is that perfect. Is the full fee paid up front? Finally, you should write out a list of expected results you want them to deliver and over what period of time they will deliver these results. Make them very specific. If they don’t meet them then they agree in writing to refund your money.
I know too many candidates that have fallen prey to these firms. There are good ones and many excellent professionals, but be careful. Remember, if it sounds too good to be true. It probably is.
To download the free chapter on Conducting an Effective Phone Interview from our book “This Is NOT The Position I Accepted” CLICK HERE and then click on the Free Search Resources link.
How effective is your job search? If you are not sure, download our free 8 Matrix Job Search Self-Assessment Scorecard. CLICK HERE and then click on the Free Search Resources link.
I welcome your thoughts and comments.