As a job seeker it isn’t easy to stand-out against the competition. One way to flip the odds in your favor is to use LinkedIn to connect with a hiring manager.

Have you ever gathered the nerve to call a hiring manager out of the blue? Chances are you were stopped by their assistant who promised to “pass on the message”. Did you ever hear back?

I remember applying for a job and calling the hiring manager 8 times over two weeks. Nothing would get her to pick up the phone. That’s when I turned to LinkedIn for help.

One of the benefits to using LinkedIn is that most people use their primary email address with LinkedIn. This means the message you send will end up in their inbox.

Here are three quick ways you can use LinkedIn to get around gatekeepers and connect with hiring managers so you stand-out from the other job applicants.

1. Connect Directly on LinkedIn

The first option is to connect directly with a hiring manager using a personalized message. When connecting as a job seeker, select ‘I’ve done business together’ and use your most impactful job title that’s relevant for the job you’re applying for.

Before you click ‘Send Invitation’, take a moment to personalize the message. Give them a reason to want to connect with you. Build intrigue and interest.

Here’s an example of what you might write.

LinkedIn Connection box
“Hi Tammy! I came across your profile while researching your job post for a senior marketing manager. The job description looks like a perfect match with my talents and experience. I would love to connect if you’re open to it. Thanks, Ian”

Now Tammy is curious about my profile. The easiest way for her to view it is to simply click ‘Accept’. After she accepts, there’s the added benefit of being able to send messages directly to her inbox.

2. Connect via LinkedIn Groups

Another approach to connect with a hiring manager is to review their profile and join a LinkedIn group that they’re currently in. LinkedIn allows members of the same group to send messages to each other without having a premium account, even if you’re not directly connected.

LinkedIn Ask To Join

I’ve recently used this approach to connect with several executives in order to avoid using the InMail function of the premium account in LinkedIn. Keep in
mind that many groups are closed and require an admin to gain access. For this reason, consider joining multiple groups in common with the hiring manager so you get in at least one.

3. Upgrade To LinkedIn Premium

If none of the methods above work, you can always pay for LinkedIn’s premium service which allows you to send InMail’s directly to a person without having to be connected with them.

The premium subscription can be very valuable as a job seeker because not only does it provide the ability to message anyone, it also provides enhanced search capabilities which is useful when you want to create a target list of hiring mangers or companies you’d like to connect with.

With these three approaches to connect with a hiring manager on LinkedIn, you’ll be able be able to eliminate gatekeepers, stand out from other applicants, and create a valuable relationship inside a company.

Thanks for reading.
– Ian Jenkins

“The beauty of LinkedIn is that it eliminates the power of gatekeepers.”

What if I told you you’re going about this job search task all wrong? You should create a job, not hunt for a job. Instead of doing the hunting, you should become the hunted.

Create A Job | Ian Jenkins
Job search tip: Create a job, don’t hunt for it

Job search strategies typically focus on surveying job boards, meeting with recruiters, or fine-tuning your resume within an inch of its life. When the realization finally clicks that you’re doing exactly the same thing as every other job seeker, that light bulb moment can lead to a dramatic shift in your career development thinking.

Instead of focusing your efforts on hunting for a job, consider for a moment if you could create your own dream job. Location (can you say tele-commute?), job description, and field of interest are all up to you. When you realize the powerful potential of creating your own dream job, you suddenly see the freedom this mindset can bring. Spoiler alert: Transitioning from dreaming about your perfect career to making your ‘someday’ career a reality only takes a PINT. (No, not that kind of pint, silly).

PINT – How To Create A Job For You

Using the PINT job search strategy, you can discover unadvertised job opportunities!”

You can use the power of unearthing opportunities to entice an employer to actually create a job just for you. Instead of hunting for a job offer, an employer makes a position just so they can have you on their team. Heady thinking, right? But how do you put PINT to work to help land the perfect job?


Consider your strengths and the skills you most enjoy using. Then reverse-engineer your strengths to the problems your top skills can fix. If you’re happy with your current employer and want to transition within the company, consider problem areas your skills could help. Or unrealized opportunities you believe the company should be targeting. Present your thoughts to your employer in a manner that focuses on company growth not on you finagling a new position.

If you’re ready for a career change and want to move outside of your existing organization (or if you’re currently not working), consider problem areas where your strengths could best be utilized. What type of organization could best benefit from your skills? Is there an un-met need you believe your strengths could serve? Don’t just focus on your local community; think globally.

Create A Job | Ian Jenkins
Job search tip: Create a job by identifying the problems you solve

Remote workers are making up an ever-increasing percentage of the global workforce. With tools like real-time instant messaging, video conferencing, and communication resources like Slack, you can work for organizations anywhere around the globe. Focus on the problem areas you want to help solve; then consider potential companies where your skills could be put to work.


Addressing issues is another powerful component of the PINT philosophy. If you want a company to create a job specifically to match your skills, think about conditions that are in a state of flux. Are regulations changing in a particular industry? Are trends causing a shift in established thinking? Consider ways you can use your strengths to address these issues. Your dream job could very well lie in addressing an ongoing change.


Focusing on the needs of an organization can open your career search to many creative options. Industry changes, workforce wants, and global opportunities are just some of the ways you can use company needs to develop a career opportunity for yourself. When revenue-generating opportunities aren’t being addressed, you can carve out a career for yourself by addressing those needs.


Create A Job | Ian Jenkins

Incorporating trend analysis into your career creation philosophy is another powerful tool to use. Again, think globally. Whether it is workforce trends or technology trends, contemplate ways your skills can help companies address coming changes. Mobile-enabled workforces, IoT devices impacting access to data, 3D-printing influencing manufacturing costs; numerous trends can impact the financial futures of existing businesses. Understanding the impact of in-development trends on businesses can help you spot opportunities where your strengths can be beneficial to the right employer.

Using the four steps of the PINT philosophy as introduced by Tim Clark in his workshop ‘Business Model You’, can drastically impact your job creation strategy. Instead of trying to find jobs that match your skill set, contemplate the ways your strengths can benefit businesses.

From local companies to global businesses, focus on your ability to excel at what you do best while helping a business owner to grow their company. Once you’re tuned into the power of your potential, you’ll soon realize it’s easier than you think to encourage a company to create a position for you.

Thanks for reading.

– Ian Jenkins

Are you struggling to find a job or switch careers? Most job seekers don’t realize that their job-hunting method, not their profile, determines their success.

Richard Bolles, author of the book What Color Is Your Parachute, has researched job-hunting methods for over 40 years. He’s collected comparative statistics on the top 10 different methods job-hunters use. The results will surprise you!

What you’ll discover is that not all job-hunting methods are created equally. Knowing which ones perform the best, will help you avoid wasting your time and energy.

Watch the brief video below to discover the top 1o best job-hunting strategies and which one has a 86% success rate! (Click the video to watch).

The Top 10 Most Successful Ways To Find A Job

Here are the highlights, starting off with the least effective approaches to find a job.

#10: Online Job sites And Employer Websites have a measly 4% success rate! Yet, amazingly this is one of the most popular options for job hunters. At best if you have a technical background in IT, healthcare or within the sciences, the chances of finding your job using this approach can go as high 10%.

#9: Mail Your Resume To Employers has 7% success rate. Sending unsolicited resumes to employers is quite popular yet not as effective as one might think when it’s time to find a job.

#8 Answering Local Newspaper Ads has a wide range of success – between 5-24%. The reason for the range is the entry-level, lower paying jobs often find their placement this way. The higher the professional level you’re looking for, the lower the match rate is for this type of job search strategy.

#7 Search firms have a 5-28% placement rate. The reason for the wide range is that there are many different types of search firms (part-time jobs – full-time / entry-level – executive level). The level of competence in each firm varies as well.

#6 Ads In Professional Journal land a 7% success rate. he advantage to this approach is that is targeted, but the downside is that it’s very competitive.

#5 State & Federal Employment Offices have a 14% success rate. There can be lots of opportunities in your local government, just be sure to be patience as the hiring process can take time.

#4 Asking For Job Leads raises your success to 33%. This works particularly well if you have a large circle of contacts that have worked with you in the industry you want to work in.

#3 Knocking On The Door Of An Employer lands you a 47% chance of getting a placement. Keep in mind this approach works particularly well at companies that are smaller which often means their hiring managers are more accessible.

#2 Yellow Pages / Company Directories if you love selling you’ll love this approach. It has a 65% success rate. It requires that you call into your desired companies, identify the hiring managers and then describe the value you create for them. It’s not for everyone, but it does have a good success rate!

#1 Face-to-face Advice Meetings is the best approach because of it’s whopping 86% success rate!   Simply asking for career advice from contacts (instead of a job!) will open the doors to job opportunities that are designed around your skills strengths and knowledge.

I’ve tried all the approaches listed here and found that face-to-face advice meetings lived up to their success rate. Mastering how to do them radically transformed my job hunt and my career trajectory.

What’s your favorite method to find a job? Leave comment below and let me know your thoughts.

Thanks for reading!

– Ian Jenkins