You are in the midst of your job search. You’re starting to make contacts in your field, and perhaps even speaking with representatives from companies that you can see yourself working for some day. However, those with whom you are speaking have never worked with you before. You may be able to verbally indicate to them what it is you can do, but they still have their concerns about your ability to provide what they need. One option open to a job searcher in such a situation is to draft a proposal for them of what you can offer.

I’m currently working with a client that is looking to change careers. His background from his current career plus his life experience, make him an excellent candidate to provide informative sessions for those who advocate for those with physical disabilities. He recently made a connection with an organization that helps disabled individuals in the arts. His connection indicated to him that while she would be happy to review his resumé, he would strengthen his position as one who could make a contribution to her organization if he could put together a proposal of the type of program he may be able to offer. My client not only developed one proposal. He was able to put together three compelling programs he could provide.

In completing the proposals, several things happened for my client. First, ideas which he had in his mind in terms of the types of contributions he could make not only were no longer in his head, but were now concretely in front of him on paper. Secondly, he now had something to present not only this contact, but even other contacts in his field of interest that he could share and discuss together with them in terms of its merits and value. Third, those discussions would be the basis of him receiving feedback from those in his targeted field. How did what he propose measure up to their needs? Where might it be missing items he would need to consider? How may his current proposals lead to other ideas that he and those he would sit and meet with lead to other topics he could develop and present? My client has been very inspired as he has worked his way through this step in his search process. While he realizes he may still have a ways to go before someone hires him for what he has to offer, the step of actually moving to this point has made him see definite progress in his search campaign.

Proposals also work well for those experienced in a profession who may be in the interview cycle portion of their job search. During an interview with a perspective hiring manager, ideally the topic has come up of not only what is expected of someone performing the duties of the job but also what are some of the hiring firm’s biggest challenges. While you may have conveyed in the interview some of what you have done in the past in similar situations, your perspective hiring manager still has his day to day issues to face. A candidate that can demonstrate they may have the solution or even the steps toward a solution to his problems displays several things to the hiring manager. First they show a real interest in terms of the issues most important to the hiring company. Secondly, they show someone who is proactive in addressing problems. The company gets to see some of what you are capable of doing. There will be those who may fear they are giving away their expertise, with the possibility of not getting the job at all. However, more likely what will happen is that you will be showing yourself as an individual who is exhibiting they have a handle on the prospective hiring company’s problems, and they will be more likely to want to bring you on board as opposed to lose you on an ongoing basis.

Putting together a proposal that addresses an issue facing a perspective hiring company helps both you and the company. It allows you to see yourself in the prospective position and demonstrates how you can contribute. It moves your words to actions, and puts the hiring company less in a position of being asked to hire you on blind faith. In the case of my client it allowed him to develop proposed approaches that may demonstrate what he can do not only for one company but for multiple organizations that might hire him. Most of all it is one step one can take to advance their candidacy while waiting for a company to make their decision while your competition is likely sitting back and doing nothing but waiting to hear.

A proposal will take you time to do. It will require you have a good understanding of the hiring company’s needs. However, it will keep you as a participant in your job search as opposed to a bystander. It could be the difference in your landing of your next great job.

Author's Bio: 

Tony Calabrese of Absolute Transitions provides suggestions, approaches and information on how you can find a new job, move up to a new position, or change your career. To get his free report, "Overcoming Obstacles to Change Your Life" visit