This blog post is a more detailed extension of step 3 in the entire process of the 10 Steps to Create Your Very Best Career Opportunities in Switzerland’s Hidden Job Market.
One of the first things I usually do with my coaching clients is creating a list of target companies. It may seem like a very quick thing to do that can be easily overlooked but it’s a crucial part of the entire process and should not be neglected.
In this blog post I will show you why this is so important and what creating that list can do for you.
Note: On Wednesday, 16th October, I am hosting a live webinar called 10 Steps to Break Into the Hidden Job Market in Switzerland. Join me if you want to get access to the very best opportunities in Switzerland.
Companies in Switzerland That Hire English Speakers
Since most of my coaching clients don’t speak German or French, it’s not easy for them to find companies in Switzerland that hire English speakers. Sure, many of the large multinationals don’t require German or French language skills but since my coaching clients have no interest in being a number in a big organization and shuffle paper all day, we generally focus on innovative small to medium sized companies and startups in Switzerland that hire English speakers.
Many people always tell me that all small to medium sized companies and startups in Switzerland require local language skills. To finally prove my point that this is nonsense and to help more people connect with these types of companies, I created a List of 160+ Technology Companies in Switzerland That Hire English Speakers.
Interestingly, almost 60% of the companies on that list are SMEs or startups.
By the way, if you are interested in an extensive list of startups & SMEs across all major industries in Switzerland that hire English speakers, email me. I may create one if the demand is big enough.
Creating Your Own List of Target Companies
The list I have built is a great starting point. However, your research should certainly not end there. It’s important that the list of companies is completely customized to you.
To illustrate that, let me tell you a story.
How to Match the Company’s WHY With Your WHY
One company that almost always shows up on the target company list of my coaching clients in Google. Obviously, it’s an interesting company but only a small portion of the people who want to work there will ever make it.
Google was also on the list of target companies when I started to work with one of my Italian coaching clients recently. I wanted to explore a bit further why it’s on his list, so I asked him.
He told me that it’s a great company and that the people are very interesting. Plus, the international environment fascinates him, he said. I nodded and asked him if he thinks that Apple or Ebay are great companies, hire interesting people and have an international environment. He nodded back and I asked “so why do you really want to work specifically at Google? What makes the company so unique to you?”
Then, something interesting happened.
He started to talk about two very specific projects at Google that fascinated him. He knew all the details because he was so interested in the cause and the impact of the projects. He got fired up when he talked about what Google is trying to achieve with these projects.
I asked him why he beliefs so much in these projects and how he can relate to them. This is when he pretty much exactly communicated his WHY statement to me and that is when it clicked.
He realized that there was an emotional connection between his WHY and the WHY of these projects that eventually align with Google’s WHY.
By realizing this and seeing the connection, it will be the easiest thing to sell himself in an interview at Google.
Alternatively, what do you think would have been the outcome of going to Google and tell them “I want to work here because I love the international environment and the fact that you hire interesting people.”?
The Importance of the Company’s WHY
One reason I rarely work with people who are looking to join a large corporation is the fact that these organizations have lost their WHY a long time ago. If the company does not know what its purpose is, how will you identify with them or make an emotional connection? Mission impossible.
Instead, focus on the companies who do know WHY they exist. By the way, it’s never to make a profit, that is a result not a purpose.
This requires some serious work in terms of research. Once again, the most effective way to do research is by talking to people. If you talk to people who work at an organization and they mostly bore you, maybe that is not a great place to be. However, if you talk to people who work at a company and they passionately talk about their work, this may be a place to explore further.
Much of the work my coaching clients do is research when they talk to people because that’s what will get you the relevant information to make educated decisions.
How to Identify the Wrong Companies
One of my coaching clients recently went though a big change in terms of the type of companies she approaches.
She initially started out by talking to people at the big pharmaceutical companies in Switzerland. What she discovered was very friendly and honest people who told her to stay away from these big companies. They told her she is too smart to get a job at these large corporations and that she should either start her own company or join a small one she can grow with.
This made her realize that the people she talked to at these big companies mainly work there for the money. Most of them don’t know why they do what they do and their motif is that they have to support a family of 4.
By talking to these people, she found the path she was meant to walk but she had to explore it first. Talking to people is the best way to find out if you are on the right track or not.
How to Sell Yourself
Once you have built a list of target companies and know exactly why you want to work there, it’s the easiest thing in the world to sell yourself. The first thing you are doing then is communicating your WHY and you will naturally connect with the leaders at these companies because they share your beliefs.
People at innovative and modern companies hire you because you believe what they believe. They hire you for your personality. Make sure you choose the right type of companies.