Looking for a way to get your resume noticed? Need answers to those seemingly impossible interview questions?

Ask your neighbor or your best friend or even your third-cousin-once-removed。 People who've waged successful job searches can be an invaluable resource when you're looking for a job. You can learn from their successes -- and mistakes -- as well as pick up a few tips and tricks along the way.

Be Open-Minded

Relocating to Virginia from upstate New York, Jamie Chigos landed a position as a financial analyst within two weeks. How?

"I kept an open mind, sent resumes everywhere and went to every agency whether they were hiring or not," said Chigos.

In addition to applying to as many companies as possible, Chigos tried to be open to a range of opportunities."People have to be willing to be open-minded about the kinds of positions they want," said Chigos. "Instead of going for a specific job, trying going to a company or an employment agency and saying 'This is what I know.' What you know can be applied to a number of different positions."

Answer When Opportunity Knocks

Three years of unemployment didn't prevent Michele (who asked us not to use her last name) from getting a job as a management consultant with a Big Four firm.

She landed her permanent job by accepting a temporary solution. "My thinking became short-term. [I asked myself]: How do you survive in this market?" she said.

Through a friend, Michele landed a contract position. It wasn't her ideal job, and she was overqualified for the position. But she was willing to work for people who had less experience than she did.

"If you're unemployed for a long time, you have to adjust to a new reality. I [was] grateful for the opportunity. ... I worked hard and I made myself indispensable," said Michele.

Michele's attitude and performance in her contract assignment paid off: She now has a permanent job that utilizes her experience and pays her well for it.

Craft a Cover Letter That Stands Out

After graduating from law school, Autumn Leach wanted to find a job quickly. She drafted a cover letter that accentuated her unique experience and made her stand out as a candidate.

"I had the standard entry-level lawyer resume that you have to use, but I used the cover letter to introduce myself more," said Leach。"I mentioned that I'd worked on a political campaign in San Diego. My current boss is running for office in Anchorage, which sparked his interest in me. It was a lucky move that paid off."

Leach is now working as an attorney in Alaska. She credits her cover letter as being "key" to finding her job.

Don't Neglect Your Network
Curtis Potter wasn't even actively seeking full-time work when he was appointed creative director of an advertising agency. He credits his new job to his solid professional network.

Potter had left his most recent job on good terms and had stayed in touch with his boss when he moved cross-country.

"I would visit whenever I went back to the West Coast and have dinner with him when he came to New York," said Potter.Potter also built a strong network in and around New York City.

"A former colleague from a local agency called me and told me about the opening, and I sent my resume in. She talked me up to her bosses and they reviewed my resume. It turned out that they knew my previous employer," said Potter.

"I had two strong references going for me -- a former colleague and a former boss. The agency interviewed tons of people, but I think these connections made all the difference," said Potter.

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