The Best-Worst Way to Land a Job in Sales

resume for sales job left on car

There are efficient ways to land a new job in sales (hint: and then there are less efficient but creative and sometimes effective ways to land a job. Our newest hire and first addition to our business development team took the creative route, and although I wouldn’t necessarily recommend his strategy, it worked out for him (and us) and makes for a great story.

What he did that was unique in his job search

The CTO at Ideal Candidate came into our office and told me that a stranger just put an envelope on my car windshield. We work in a busy part of downtown Toronto, so this isn’t completely uncommon. He mentioned that it didn’t look like a typical flyer so I decided to check it out.

It was an envelope with a handwritten note that said something like, “I like your car and one day I would like to own a car just like yours. Can we have a coffee so I can learn about what you did to buy that car?” with a resume included.

I didn’t reply to the letter, but I did keep it on my desk.

He was persistent


Two weeks later, my co-founder also found the same envelope on his car – this guy was persistent. At this point, the mystery job applicant didn’t know that we were hiring for sales roles at Ideal Candidate or that we had even founded the company. He apparently just really likes cars. We only hire new sales candidates using Ideal Candidate, so we told him to make an account – and if we were matched – we would bring him in for an interview.

He took our advice and quickly created his Ideal Candidate account.

It paid off

Sure enough, a few weeks later our job matching algorithm actually matched him to our open position for business development. There are thousands of candidates in our Toronto candidate pool, so he was definitely not guaranteed to match. But the persistence and boldness of his actions – traits we value at Ideal Candidate – were verified by the job leo

In the end, his unique approach worked and landed him a job. That being said, he could have also sat at home and created his Ideal Candidate profile without dropping envelopes on cars all around the city. I still haven’t asked how many envelopes he left scattered throughout Toronto.

 Should you get creative with your job hunt?

The decision to get creative with your job search depends on the role you’re applying for and the stage of your career you’re at. I believe it’s more efficient to use the various job search tools available to you online, but if you have the time and really want a particular job, going above and beyond can pay off. Whether it’s a super creative resume or a stunt like leaving random resumes on car windshields.

What’s the craziest thing you’ve done to try and land your dream job? Let me know in the comments or tweet @recruit_smarter.

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Shaun Ricci

COO at Ideal
Shaun Ricci is a Canadian entrepreneur and the Co-Founder of Ideal. Shaun served as Co-Founder and COO of Field ID until it was acquired in December 2012. Shaun’s accomplishments include spots on the Profit Hot 50 and Deloitte Fast 50 Companies-to-Watch lists as well as the 2012 Ontario Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award. Shaun is also an active writer, documenting his wins and losses while building his startup sales team.