The 2-Hour Job Search: Using Technology to Get the Right Job Faster
Fantastic guide. Useful for all job-seekers, but a must read for incoming MBA students!!! Very practical and clear.
Remember it's a whole system and follow it once exactly. Trust the system! Make sure you understand how all the parts work together before making changes. Also, do the whole process again if you have significant changes (or even if you want to pursue two industries at once!). It goes much faster the second time. For incoming MBA students that don't know where they want to go, I recommend doing it for every industry you think you might be interested in. Do the LAMP process early and you will have a good grasp of unfamiliar industries & companies.
NEGATIVES: Two small down-sides.
First, the book is already getting out-dated as technology changes. I was easily able to adapt it, but maybe in 5 years they need a new, updated release.
Second, I found the process mostly led me to the big names in my industry. I'm not sure if that's true for everyone, it may be a result of me switching industries and just beginning to learn about a new industry. My recommendation below may help with that a little bit. Otherwise, if you don't just want a list of the biggest names, think about how you can keep a narrow focus.
RECOMMENDATION: The rest of this review is a long description of how to tweak the system. This will make more sense AFTER you complete the whole LAMP process, including the sorting.
In the first few chapters, he talks about the LAMP list. It works, but might need some tweaks. The "M" stand for motivation and is a 5-min process where you simply identify how motivated you feel about working for that company. I totally understand the theory behind it, but have found that some people need more of a break down for the "M", especially if you don't know much about the companies. It can help to make a few columns that break down your motivation into different categories. These should be VERY EASY to find (like glassdoor / wikipedia first page - you don't want to take more than 10 -15 minutes per extra category). Pick 2-3 categories that are important to you, then sort as you prefer (maybe name recognition (N) first, then location(L)) and then assign a single motivation score to each company. I recommend using the 2 categories to come up with ONE motivation score that you then put into the original LAMP list. If you add these two columns into the LAMP, for example making it LA(NL)P... you might get your sorting dominated by the two new motivation components.
Here are some ideas:
♦ Location of headquarters: 3=favorite cities, 2=could live there a few years, 1=don't want to live there
♦ Size (decide what size you want): 3=best size (1,000+ employees or 10-50 person start up), 2= next nearest size, etc
♦ Name recognition: 3=Top name in your industry, 2=big name, 1= hey, at least they're in the right industry
♦ Glassdoor score (a proxy for corporate culture - don't read the reviews, keep focused! Don't include companies with less than a certain number of reviews (ie 3 reviews that give a 3 star average isn't helpful): 4=4-5 star reviews, 3=3-4 star review, 2=2-3 star review, 1= NOT ENOUGH REVIEWS (re-evaluate those separately)
♦ Work-life balance: This one is hard to research quickly, but glassdoor reviews often focus on it. Maybe a simple Y/N based ont he first page of glassdoor reviews would be sufficient. If a company has terrible balance, that should show up. Good balance might also show up. But many companies might be unclear (some ppl say yes, some say no) - in that case, maybe try for a 3=good, 2=unclear, 1=bad system.
♦ Culture: Similar to work-life balance, this is a simple check. See if company makes Best Place to Work lists. Just google "best *industry* companies to work for (best tech companies to work for, best consulting firms to work for, etc). Pick three lists from reputable sources (Forbes, Business Insider, etc) that will cover at least 100 companies. For example, don't pick three lists of 10 best, which is only 30 total, but try a 100 best, 30 best, and 25 best for 155 total. Obviously many companies will overlap. Then make a column and simply write Y/N if the company appears on any of your lists.
♦ Bad example: Benefits package - Don't choose something like this that would take too much research per company.
The point of all of this is to see which companies you are more motivated to pursue. Think about what you really want in a company and a very quick way to check if companies have it. For me, location was a big factor in motivation, and taking 15-mins to look up location really changed my priorities. For example, a company with a pretty solid reputation that I thought I was interested in was in Milwaukee. They suddenly dropped from a 5 to a 3 in motivation, essentially falling off my list because I have NO interest in moving to Milwuakee (nothing against it, just not for me!).
Hopefully all of this helps. If it's not clear, do the full LAMP first and then use this to make nuanced adjustments. I'm happy to clarify / explain if needed. Good luck to all the job searchers!