Don’t Always Buy 50-Yard Line Seats- Hidden Career Opportunities are Found on the 20 Yard Line!



I am a huge Florida State University football fan. My tickets have always been on the 25-yard line for the last twenty years. I love these seats and will never change them.  

Seats on the 50-yard line tickets have long held an admired status. However, the appeal of the 20 and 30-yard line seats must often be recognized. For me, these seats offer a unique perspective, capturing a better view of scoring plays and seeing plays develop. It got me thinking last Saturday while watching FSU destroy Virginia Tech; many job seekers are fixated on landing positions at the corporate giants, overlooking the potential opportunities at smaller companies that might offer even more fulfilling and rewarding roles. 

While large companies may boast name recognition and perceived stability, they are often inundated with competition and bureaucratic hurdles, making it challenging for individuals to truly stand out and make a substantial impact. So many layoffs in the last six months were large companies laying off remote workers, people they may have never physically met.  

 On the other hand, smaller companies frequently offer an environment conducive to innovation and rapid growth. Many of these companies often allow employees to wear multiple hats, leading to a diverse skill set and a deeper understanding of the business as a whole. Moreover, the potential for career growth and upward mobility can be substantial, presenting employees with unique opportunities for advancement that might not be as readily available in more giant corporations. In smaller companies, you do have the chance to work directly with the CEO! 

There are several strategies to uncover hidden gems for job seekers looking to explore opportunities at companies that you may not even know exist. 


  1. Attending Industry Events. Conferences and association meetings in your area will always yield tremendous results. You will meet people at companies you have never heard of before and will have the opportunity to explore career opportunities with these companies. Face-to-face networking and internal referrals are still the top sources of hires for almost all companies! 

  1. Use This is amazing. Here is the prompt (there are many, but this one works well) PROMPT: You are an expert list builder. Can you provide me with a list of 50 companies with less than 300 employees in the Orlando, Florida, area? Please include their company career website address. You will get some good companies, and you can keep asking Bard to bring you more! Use your Social Networks. Everyone has a ton of friends and contacts. Go through your network and learn where many of these people work. Do some research on these companies, and if you find a fit, you automatically have someone who can present you to the company.   

  1. Read your local business journals. What new companies are coming into your marketplace? What companies are relocating to your region? These become high-priority targets for your job search. 

  1. Volunteer. One of my favorites. Every city has a ton of volunteer opportunities. Spend a day at an event, and you will meet people from companies you never knew existed. Turn your good deed into a great job! 

By broadening your horizons and embracing the potential of smaller companies, you can position yourself for an exciting and fulfilling career journey filled with growth and opportunity! Also, 20-yard line tickets are easier on your wallet! 

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