Making cool videos and emailing with important people

Hey, friends.

Coming to you poolside today from San Diego. I tell you, the obscenely incredible weather really dampens the sadness and nostalgia of my parents selling my childhood home. Time marches onwards, etc--but whatever, this sunshine situation is INSANE.

Last week, I put a call out asking you to submit your questions and, naturally, you delivered in spades. Several of your questions are being shaped into podcast episodes for the upcoming #entrylevelboss podcast as we speak--but I figured, why wait?

So, without further ado, it's Q&A time.

Hey Lex. I'm submitting a job application and they're asking me to record a video to "bring my application to life." What would your top tips be for me AKA someone who has never done this before? I don't want to just repeat what I've written, but in video form.

Okay, noooo stress. Basically what they're looking for here is just a glimpse of your personality, right? People want to work with people they like.

If you're like me, your first thought when you hear application video is Elle Woods' Coppola-directed Harvard admissions essay. I promise: yours does NOT have to be anything near this intense.

In fact, I strongly advise you to do the exact opposite. Selfie it up in this situation. I personally can get really awkward when someone else is filming me, especially if it's for something work-related like this. It's weirdly intimate.

You don't need a "real" camera--just grab the closest iPhone and pretend like you're on FaceTime talking to me. Be natural, confident, and kind. Keep it under 90 seconds. Introduce yourself right off the bat and say, "Hello, I'm so-and-so, delighted to sort-of e-meet you. My favorite color is magenta and I'm filming this video in my car right now...."

The best thing you can do is be excited, be interested. Ask a question (I know, it's a recorded video, but the point is to show your interest). Or you could propose an idea for what else you could do for the company beyond whatever it says in the job requirements.

Hope that helps.

How do you say nice to meet you to someone you won't see for a long time and don't need anything from right now? I went to a happy hour and met a senior partner in my company who will be really helpful for switching career paths inside my company later on, but it's too early to ask about that.

Great question.

First of all, within 2-3 days of meeting this person, you should write him or her an email thanking them for the chat. Get specific, like you would in a thank-you note to your aunt for a Christmas present you get when you're 8-years-old. Here's a completely fictitious example I just came up with:

Hi Janet,

Just a quick note to say how much I enjoyed meeting at [EVENT] on [DAY OF THE WEEK].

And thank you for the advice about what the business development team is looking for when it comes to internal hires. I've got another big project in my current role that I really want to stick around for, but I'm definitely planning to pursue that transition in the next 7-8 months.

If there's no immediate "follow-up" thing to do--you aren't sending them a resume, you aren't asking them to introduce you to someone else, you aren't asking another question--you need a strong sign-off paragraph that keeps the communication line open without it sounding like you intend to stalk them for the next several months. Personally, I'd write something like this:

I'll keep you posted, and will be sure to touch base at the end of the year. Thanks again!


Bonus Fun Fact: You'll be able to hit Reply on that same email chain in 8-9 months when youdo need something later on, and they'll immediately have a point of reference for who you are and where you met.

Here's my question: Do you do any sort of hourly career consultations? Or are you open to the idea of doing them?

Yessir. You've got a couple choices, actually.

(1) I'll be opening enrollment for The #entrylevelboss Academy in about a month. The course will start in mid-June. It's three weeks long, with all the information split up into very-not-overwhelming chunks of information, with 20 minutes of homework a day.

I will walk you through everything you need to do in order to get your shi*t together, decide what jobs you're actually trying to apply to, how to present yourself in the best light possible for those positions... and then get you hired better, faster, stronger, baby.

(2) I do 90-minute private consultations in person or on FaceTime/Skype.

(3) I do offer a 4-week intensive, one-on-one VIP career empowerment coaching package. Just an FYI: I only take on about five clients a year, so it's good to get on my calendar as soon as possible.

Hit me up if you have questions or want more details:

Alright, let's leave it there for today. This Q&A thing is kinda fun, right? Let me know what you think.

Big love,

PS: Those of you who have been following me for a while will be excited to hear that #the100dayproject is back and I am once again singing a lot of songs on the internet! Or, more specifically, over on Instagram. I wrote this Medium post last year called "What You Get in Exchange for 17 Hours of Your Time" about my experience doing the project. Check it out if you're curious.