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The winning traits to get an outsourcing job!

Categories: Getting a Job, Outsourcing Articles | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

How to get an outsourcing job
I get emails daily from people in the Philippines, Bangladesh, India, and Pakistan asking for the secrets to getting a job in outsourcing or doing outsourcing.  Doing outsourcing is no different from any other industry.  You provide a service, and someone pays you.  The only difference is that the person or company paying you lives in a different country.  The main focus is to always be improving and sharpening your skills and to be at the top of your game.  Presentation is another very important factor.
Most people have a variety of skill sets.  Some people are good at being a “people person”, while others are good with numbers, or good with their hands.  The best acupuncturists are generally the worst at marketing and vice versa.  The worst chiropractor I have ever had was a millionaire because he knew how to market his clinic and how to hire other people who were good at chiropractic work and related professions.  Maybe you are good at your work, but terrible at presenting yourself.  Have you ever thought about that?    If you are unskilled, then you will not be able to get any type of decent job until you have some solid skills.  An unskilled person should find a way to become masterful at some skill.  But, for those that are skilled, but have lousy presentation skills, here is my “expert” advice:
Presenting yourself has many facets, and don’t overlook any of them.  A good RESUME is key.  DRESSING well is very important in our superficial planet.  Being PUNCTUAL is critical.  Being pleasant or even FUN to work with can be a huge determining factor in getting or keeping a job — nobody wants to work with someone who makes them feel like tearing their hair out no matter how talented you might be.  A good ATTITUDE that comprises caring about others and caring about what you are doing is irreplaceable.  LANGUAGE skills are critical — do you speak clearly and enunciate or do you avoid people and grunt “uh” when someone asks you a question?  If English is not your mother tongue, people will still enjoy talking to you if you are clear, helpful, and pleasant, no matter how thick or thin your accent is.  SPELLING — do you type with an accent?  People lose respect for others who don’t spell well (which is a problem for me, because I’m  a lousy speller-er).  Lets elaborate on these main points below:
People send me their resumes daily and these documents are filled with a multitude of sins.  Some resumes do not clearly document what the person does, while others don’t document what company and metro the person worked.  If the company and metro are mentioned, job descriptions and responsibilities are often omitted.   The purpose of a resume is to evoke a feeling of credibility and to inform others. If you leave out all of the useful information that someone would look for in a resume, your resume will get tossed in the trash.  As a general rule you should NOT send a resume to anyone you have not talked to either in person or over the phone.  Resumes end up in what Americans call, “The circular file” (trash).  Go to a professional resume editor to have your resume get a professional touch and you will impress everyone.  Additionally, people misrepresent themselves on resumes making themselves look like they are much more skilled than they really are.  Try to make your resume look real, and make your experience look believable and include contact information so that your information can easily be checked by the person reading the resume.  You could include contact information for the manager(s) you worked for. 
There are different formats for resumes.  It could be in inverse chronological order.  You could include: Job Objective, Highlights, Relevant Experience, Work History, and Education.  Avoid leaving “holes” in your resume.  If there is no material for 2002-2008 then the person reading your resume will wonder what you were up to?  It is best if a resume is on one page, but two pages might be acceptable if the content is good.  The resume should be professionally typed with adequate margins.  It must be proofread so you can be sure that there are no errors.  Its traditional in America to have a resume on special off white or ivory rough paper.   The quality of the paper is part of a professional presentation.
FYI: I do NOT hire individuals for any jobs, nor do I have personal contacts in outsourcing other than programming companies throughout the world.  Please do NOT send me your resume.  
People have always been very superficial, and human nature shows no sign of changing.  Dressing for success is very important, however, what to wear can depend on your job description and culture.  Italians like flashy suits, while the British prefer more “understated” clothing.  Indians are always found in slacks and a button down shirt and rarely wear a tie (at least in the high tech industry).  Blue collar jobs have set uniforms, while white collar jobs allow a lot of flexibility in the grades of quality of clothing.  If you have expensive clothes, but wear them sloppily, you will make a mediocre impression.  But, what if you get clothes for a bargain that make you look like a millionaire — its possible.  Remember, that you are dressing for others and not yourself.   If your boss is happy if you wear old “frumpy” clothes with holes in them, then there is no harm in wearing them.  Since we are not psychics, we don’t know how others that we don’t know want us to dress.  Therefor, its best to dress well so we are more likely to please our superiors.
Working with others involves coordination.  If someone is always late, it is aggravating to work with them.  If you show up late for your interview, the boss will expect that you will be even more late for future meetings and will strongly consider not hiring you.  In some European countries, you are supposed to come a few minutes early, while in Japan you customarily must arrive within seconds of the appointed time to avoid being rude.  Japanese coordinate their trains and cabs so they arrive exactly on time.  If you live in India where the locals are on IST (Indian Standard Time — always late), if you are on time, you will be special, and everyone will like you — at least after they arrive which will be at least twenty minutes after you do.  They will appreciate that you are waiting for them instead of them waiting for you. Although Indians are much more patient than any other nationality on the planet, they still will appreciate your punctuality.
Being pleasant and fun
Some salespeople are overly friendly and it sometimes comes across as fake.  But, their livelihood depends on interaction, so they try to speak in a pleasant way and be fun.  If you are trying to get a job, you are selling yourself. You need to be up beat, fun, and ready for action.  Although Americans have some of the worst scores in math and science in the developed world, the levels of confidence and fun-ness are higher here than in other places.  Indians are the opposite.  Its common to see an Indian who can do PhD level math have no self confidence and be very shy, uptight and rigid at a job interview.  In the professional world, those who can be fun without sacrificing professinalism or responsibility have a huge edge over the competition.  Additionally, smiling generally doesn’t hurt unless you are applying for a job in a mortuary.
A good work attitude is important anywhere.  You need to really care about what you are doing and about the people you are helping. In India, the culture lends its self to a lot of superficial bowing down to authorities.  Indians love to huddle around their superiors, kiss their feet (at least mentally), and never question authority.  This might be a cultural necessity (I’m glad we are not like that here), but its superficial.  Real caring and responsibility is necessary.  Responsibility will be omitted in this blog because it is a minor part of getting a job, although its the main component in keeping  a job.
We live in a world where people speak several languages, and we all use language differently.  Slang can differ from metro to metro, and levels of formality differ in different types of professional and class environments.  Obviously if you want to work at a call center, you need to speak and communicate clearly and be patient with others.  But, to be a programmer or data entry clerk, its also advantageous if you can communicate clearly.  When I talk to programmers in India, I always have to say, “What?”, because I can never hear their answer to my question.  “Was that a yes or a no?”.  If you are shy, quiet, or an unclear person, try to practice being clear.  Nothing in life comes easily, especially language.  People spend twenty years learning their native language, and another twenty to learn a foreign language. Plan on putting some thought and effort into speaking clearly.
If you are submitting written work to a manager or boss, make sure you spell well and write well.  Have your work checked by your most erudite friend if you have such a friend.  Paying a professional to edit your work wouldn’t be a crime if you can afford it.  People lose respect for me every day each time I make a spelling mistake.  I write a lot and most of it is not valuable enough to triple check.  I explain to people who criticize my spelling that I am a marketing professional, not a spelling professional.  Those people who lose respect for me still do business with me since I get them work, but its painful to be disrepected so frequently for petty reasons. The main point is to do whatever you consider to be “doing your best” to spell well when submitting important documents.   Its as important as your professional skills to many people.