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What Does Lionel Messi And A Successful Job Seeker Have In Common?

Many of life’s failures are people who did not realise how close they were to success when they gave up.” – Thomas Alva Edison

There are millions of people with brilliant ideas that never become real. There are many other people with similar ideas or even slightly worse ones that become really successful. Why?

Many of us look with envy at the candidate that is not as experienced as us that secures a new job.  “They were so lucky”, “how did they manage to get that job?”, “Wow the world is so unfair”, “they must have been helped” etc.

Okay, here is a question to ask yourself – Have you ever hit a golf ball without following through? Don’t play golf… no problems, kicked a football, hit a tennis ball or even rowed a boat… without following through on your shot or stoke? I have missed a goal and smashed a clubhouse or two by not following through in the past.

Let’s be honest it doesn’t matter if you are the very best at something you will never sparkle unless you follow through with decisive action. Not even Phil Mickelson, Roger Federer, Lionel Messi or that famous rower I cannot remember would be successful without following through on their shots, training hard and striving for success.

So maybe, that “inferior” candidate that beat us to that job was better at following through with their job search strategy than us?

Here are a few questions you need to answer honestly as a job seeker:

  • Have you followed up on every lead that has been mentioned to you at a networking event or by a friend or family member? It is hard enough out there, so you must seize every bit of help you can.
  • Do you follow up on new business contacts you meet at networking events and job fairs?  There is no point going to an event, connecting on LinkedIn if you do not spend time building a real business connection.
  • Have you ever missed the deadline for a job application because you didn’t get around to amending your cv/resume on time?Just because the deadline is next Friday at 5pm, doesn’t mean you have to wait until 4.59pm next Friday to apply.
  • Do you spend enough time on your job search?  One thing a job seeker has too much of is time. Ask yourself are you using it wisely.
  • Do you follow up on every application submitted? You may jump from the maybe pile to the interview pile by following up on your application.
  • Do you follow up on every interview you attend? Maybe send a quick thank you to the company. This can be a great time to address a question that stumped you at interview. Eg. “Since our meeting, I was thinking about how I could increase company sales and realised that I have two great contacts in the Pharmaceutical industry who may be very interested in the your new Shrink Packaging design etc.”
  • Do you follow up on your unsuccessful applications? Eg. Thank them for considering your application and asking them to consider you for future vacancies that may arise. And/or asking for a meeting to get feedback on your unsuccessful interview.

Okay the list could go on, but I would harp on anymore. We will never reach our goal unless we are prepared to follow through and shoot for success.

We can beat our competition to the next job opportunity if we “Follow Through” on our job seeking efforts. And let someone else be envious of our success for a change.

Greg is a Social Media trainer and workshop facilitator with the Digital Marketing Institute. He has also delivered lectures and short courses for leading organisations including SureSkills, and The Michael Smurfit Business School. Greg also works with the Ahain Group as a Social Business Consultant. He believes that in order to make social media work for your business you must have a clear business goal, a clearly defined strategy and make sure that everything you do is measureable. Specialities include: Social Media Training | Personal Branding |Social Business Consultancy | Social Strategy Workshops | Interview Techniques | Psychometric Profiling | LinkedIn Training | Facebook Training | Twitter Training | Blogging | Online Video and You Tube Training | Emerging Social Media (Pinterest, Foursquare, Instagram, Google+ etc.) More information at: and

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  • Hi Greg, This is great advice and I would extend your point around networking to cover social media generally. There is no point connecting with someone online, unless you are prepared to follow through and attempt to start to build a relationship with that same person. Thanks for sharing, Niall

  • Anonymous

    u00a0Thanks Niall.

  • Great questions, relevant to business owners also Greg. I am sure we are all guilty of not “following through” all the time. As long as it does not become self-sabotaging behaviour or complacency!nnWe should be consistently asking ourselves these questions, so we do not miss opportunities, and be vigilant for opportunities that are camouflaged or hidden.

  • Roisin Bell

    I’m not a gamer but I can certainly see the advantage in adding some fun to interactive marketing. I agree that this is one to be watched and will surely develop further. So those hours teenagers spend playing games may not all be for naught – there could be a career in the area and not just in game software development…u00a0

  • Anonymous

    Fascinating post, Frank. That MacDonalds game takes me back to when I was at school! Nice use of the technology today. Thanks for the info.n:0)nLewis

  • Well I’m hooked! This is exceptional – an interactive fun-inspired way to market a concept or idea. I can see this really taking off andu00a0definitelyu00a0keen to hear more.nExcellent example Frank and great post!

  • As a Nintendo fan myself I can see the attraction…. Gamification wasn’t something I knew much about until now, thank you Frank.

  • As a Nintendo fan myself I can see the attraction…. Gamification wasn’t something I knew much about until now, thank you Frank.

  • I’m definitely NOT a gamer, in fact I find it mind-numbingly boring.u00a0 My children however love it and I can see how that generation would find it fun.u00a0 I missed the gaming boat by about ten years methinks.u00a0 I do however love the concept of gamification and it has been my experience that people learn best when they are having fun, I just didn’t call it by that name.

  • Caliman

    hey all, Check this one out! Just launched, receiving great response. Hope you enjoy. We at SIRIUS are happy with ROO so far as the game results to date fully meet our intended outcomes.nn

  • Anonymous

    Thanks for the comment Niall, glad that your awareness has now been raised.u00a0 Thanks for another excellent example.

  • Anonymous

    Thanks Roisin for the comment. If this takes off I’m sure there will be lots of opportunities for people who are skilled in non-technical development, but also in other aspects that make games successful e.g. good storytelling.

  • Anonymous

    Thanks for the comment Lewis

  • Anonymous

    Thanks for the comment Christina.u00a0 I’m not mad about the term Gamification, but I can certainly see the concept taking off

  • Anonymous

    Thanks for the comment Catherine.u00a0 What’s your favourite Nintendo game.u00a0 I’m a big fan of Zelda games.

  • Anonymous

    Thanks for the comment Mairead.u00a0 I was big into gaming when I was young.u00a0 Thankfully my mother had the foresight to ban gaming during the school week and to kick us out the door on the odd summer day when we got good weather.u00a0 It’s nice to think though that there is a possibility of some practical application of this in the real world.

  • Anonymous

    Thanks for the comment Eoin.u00a0 I’d say the next few years could be telling, however I’m seeing enough examples to suggest that things are starting to accelerate.

  • Zaslam

    Excellent post Frank. Always been fond of the idea of increasing engagement through games, but never heard of Gamification before.

  • Anonymous

    Frank,nnI’m wondering if gamification is more attractive since there are so many of us who were introduced to gaming via Atari, PlayStation or Nintendo. There are other systems but my point is that we’re familiar with the electronic format. Much simpler versions have existed for sometime in the form of scratch tickets, typing in codes on a website or texting to a particular number. This seems tou00a0take it to another level. Does it only apply to business to consumer or could it also work with business to business?

  • “Company pyramid structures and silo mentalities are being challenged as out-dated, irrelevant and unhelpful by a progressively connected business community.”
    I honestly think with the onset of pyramid schemes and the devastating effects they have on the community at large, helps everyone realise that the company pyramid structures do not work today either. We need the employee to realise this as much as the business owner, for proper integration.

    Accepting that there will always be change, and accepting that change, can do a lot to help us stay in the game.

    Great points Lewis!

  • Anonymous


    Your point about questioning everything is something I encourage business owners to do on a regular basis. When you’re not evaluating your business’ performance on a regular basis, it is so easy to assume everything is fine.

    My observation is that we are in a moment of huge change. A recent study by the Hay Group ( points out trends that we’re engaged in already or observing in our peers. Small to mid-size businesses are already having to adjust to dramatic changes in consumer behaviour, challenging economic climate, technology changes and employees wanting some kind of integration between work and personal time. After the relief of having a consistent wage packet and benefits has worn off, employees ask, “Is that all there is?” There are many business leaders who are flummoxed by how to handle what is swirling around them. Some are going to hang on the “old ways” while others are going to explore. Asking questions is paramount in identifying how business goals are being met and how a business responds to the social and economic changes surrounding us.

  • Really nice interview, Sian. The Tannery cuisine is delicious and it was very interesting to hear how Máire manages to balance family life with multiple businesses (restaurant, cookery school, townhouse).  I’m sure the food festival will be amazing this year!

  • Lovely interview Sian It’s always interesting and inspiring reading about ‘a day in the life of’ type interviews for busy business people

  • I love the simplicity of the advice in this interview Sian. It should resonate with every business owner – Listen to your customers!
    And the restaurant looks amazing 🙂

  • Hi, thanks for all the kind comments.  I enjoyed doing the interview with Sian and also reading other interviews that she has done.  Busy weekend ahead for us! 

  • Thanks Sian for doing the interview with me 🙂

  • James Power

    was delighted to read Maires interview today as have been a keen fan of Paul of the Tannery with quite a while and the penny has dropped at last…………..behind every good man………………..
    Keep up the good work!…………..James Power.

  • It’s on our development roadmap. We’re looking at a visitorM hosted check-in system as well as integrating with third party services like Foursquare

  • Alex: Thanks for your reply. I look forward to hear more about the developments in the future.

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