A reader writes:
I know you cannot just send in your resume online and expect to get called. It is those applicants that are willing to try new things that might have a chance. I really want this job that was posted online. I have the experience and it would be such a good fit. Anyway, I applied online and I tried to get someone live just to talk with. I left messages for the H.R. people, but I did not expect them to call back. I want to go in with my resume and just say hello and talk. Is this going to help or hurt? I figure I have nothing to lose and everything to gain.
No! Do not just show up with no appointment.
It absolutely could hurt you. If a candidate did this to me, there is a very good chance that it would ruin the person's chances. This is because:
1. I'm busy. I set aside specific blocks of time for interviews, and the rest of my day is booked up with other things. There is zero chance that I would make the time to talk with a candidate who showed up unannounced, and a high chance that I would be concerned about a candidate who didn't realize this.
2. The nature of the hiring process is that the employer decides which candidates they want to call in to interview. It's their call, not yours, and I would be annoyed that you were trying to circumvent that process.
When I have many good candidates for a job and one of them is being a nuisance, I'm less interested in that person, not more. If you want to stand out, write a great cover letter, have a resume that demonstrates a track record of success in the area they're hiring for, and follow up once, politely. Good luck!