10 Career Lessons From Major Success Stories

By Sarah Kahwash

The following innovators, authors, entertainers and notable celebrities didn’t find success quickly or easily, but they all share a common denominator—they toughed it out and hit it big. Read on for 10 lessons you can learn from some of Her Campus’s favorite success stories.

1. Steve Jobs: “You’ve got to find what you love.”
You’ve heard it time and again: find something you love and pursue it. Steve Jobs was taking a risk when he dropped out of Reed College and started Apple in his parents’ basement, but three decades later, he found himself at the top of a multi-billion dollar company that probably produced your computer screen. In his 2005 commencement speech at Stanford, Jobs didn’t speak so much about talent or resources or GPA, but instead told the graduates “to have the courage to follow your heart and intuition… everything else is secondary.” It’s still important to be realistic (nobody is going to hire you to surf the Internet just because you love StumbleUpon), but if you love your work, it will be easier and you will do better. In the wise words of Aristotle, “Pleasure in the job puts perfection in the work.”

2. Jennifer Hudson: Success is rarely instant.
Try to remember way back when American Idolactually mattered to the public and Jennifer Hudson was a contestant. She was eliminated before she even reached the top six singers of season 3—and yet, in the long run, she managed to outperform most of the show’s winners from every season. Less than three years after her elimination from Idol, Hudson was belting it out all over the big screen in Dreamgirlsalongside stars like Beyoncé, Jamie Foxx and Eddie Murphy. She kept at it and made her way to the top, winning an Oscar for Best Supporting Actress in Dreamgirls, releasing a Grammy-winning debut album and landing several more roles in movies like Sex and the City and The Secret Life of Bees. Learn from Hudson’s story and don’t give up just because you weren’t noticed right away; keep working hard and you’ll earn recognition.

3. Mark Zuckerberg: Build and keep a solid network.

Facebook gets a bad rap for time-wasting, friend-stalking and boy-ogling, but in reality it has brought together millions of people who might not have kept in touch otherwise. Creator Mark Zuckerberg has not only created an extensive network for the world, but for himself as well. Soon after finishing his sophomore year of college, he made connections with technology moguls like Sean Parker of Napster, Peter Thiel of PayPal, and Steve Chen, who later co-founded YouTube. And while Facebook was a smart idea to begin with, these people gave Zuckerberg the tools to materialize it and build the entrepreneurial empire he has today. That isn’t to say you should give a firm handshake and your business card to everyone you see, but keep your eyes open and don’t be afraid to meet new people. You never know where it may take you.

Lessons 4 – 10 and Complete Article

Telepathy and resume content

Susan Gainen

Telepathy is not a job search tool. When drafting resumes and cover letters, you must share information about yourself that will be useful to a prospective employer.
How do you know what an employer  wants to know?
Know about the employer Don’t put the cart before the horse: What do you know about the employer and the work that it does?
If you do not know what the employer does, do some research. You may not learn what the managing partner had for breakfast last Friday, but you should be able to learn some basic information about the employer and its activities. Search tools: martindale.com, LinkedIn, Google searches, alumni data bases if appropriate. Ask your career services professionals what they know about the employer.
If you have done the work, describe it clearly. Use all of the important buzzwords and markers of accomplishment. If you have not done the work, you must use the language of transferrable skills to show that you have done something similar which shows that you have the capacity to learn.
Caveat writer: Do not write that you are eager to advance your skills set and to grow as a law clerk or lawyer. That you may learn something while working is a collateral benefit to you and of no consequence to an employer who is trying to hire a competent lawyer or clerk to get work done today.
What does the employer know about your school? A second critical and often overlooked question for applicants: is the employer familiar with my school and its programs?
Unless the employer is an adjunct professor or very recent graduate, the answer is usually “no.”
Law schools and their programs change all the time. Unless an employer is a graduate of your law school who pays particular attention to all of the printed and electronic material that the Dean sends regularly to update grads about curriculum, faculty, and new teaching methodology, your prospective employer has no clue about your law school experience.
Someone who graduated more than 10 years ago will have no idea that you represented live clients in your clinic and went to court on their behalf. Experienced lawyers may not know how your other classes may now connect to real world problems, and without specific information, they may dismiss your study abroad program as three months of overseas drinking.


About Susan

It’s all about the work…
Susan Gainen
has spent the past 25 years observing market swings, career change, new technologies and new generations bringing their own stamp and styles to work. Her clients benefit from her unique perspective on how work gets done, which combines her expertise in intergenerational communication and experience in the food business, the car business, and the business of law.

Inside Google’s recruiting machine

Silicon Valley’s most venerable recruiting setup is operating in one of the most competitive hiring climates ever. It just brought on a record number of new employees. Here’s how.

By Anne VanderMey, reporter


FORTUNE — In the hot war for talent being fought in Silicon Valley, no company has an arsenal quite like Google’s. Named Fortune‘s Best Company to Work For in 2012, the search giant made a record 8,067 hires last year — boosting total headcount by a third. The thirteen-year-old firm’s recruiting has an almost mythical quality about it, particularly for the two million candidates applying to work there each year. In terms of elite American institutions, getting a job at Google ranks with being admitted to Stanford Graduate School of Business or becoming a Navy Seal. Behind the glitz there are a few Googley basics at work: data, money (lots of it), sophisticated programming, and an army of young, eager recruiters.


Google (GOOG) does not release its recruiter headcount. It is likely huge. In 2009, the company revealed that there were about 400 internal recruiters. John Sullivan, a San Francisco State University professor who has studied Google and advises companies on hiring, estimates that the number across all departments and countries is closer to 1,000, with about 300 full-time recruiters in the U.S. and more than 600 contractors. More conservative estimates put the tally at 500. Even if the lower figure was correct, Google would have one recruiter for every 64 employees. That’s a far higher ratio than the 577-to-1 average for most large companies, according to the Corporate Executive Board.


Who are Google’s recruiters? They’re young, highly paid and, often, on a six month contract. “They’re probably the company that I’ve seen that uses the most [contractors],” says Michael A. Morell, co-founder and managing partner of Silicon Valley recruiting firm Riviera Partners. “There’s a lot to be said for new people trying to prove themselves in the first six to 12 months.” It’s difficult to find an accurate or exact employee-to-recruiter ratio at the company, the number of recruiters varies dramatically. At any given time, Sullivan says, 70% of the recruiting staff might be on contract. That changes, though, as Google feels the need to gear up or cut back on hiring. “We want the best of the best to come to Google,” says Todd Carlisle, its director of staffing. “We budget what it takes to find the best of the best.”


Read The Rest Of The CNNMoney Article

LinkedIn Leads In Social Job Recruiting Followed By Twitter And Facebook

It’s important to note that this study examines activity by recruiters as opposed to actual job hunters. Despitethe rise of Facebook as a source for job seeking and professional networking, Bullhorn’s data shows that recruiters’ LinkedIn networks still drive more views than their Twitter and Facebook networks combined. Recruiters who post jobs on social networks are likely to receive more applications from LinkedIn, with the social network driving almost nine times more applications than Facebook and three times more than Twitter.
One interesting data point from the report—a Twitter follower is almost three times more likely to apply to a job than a LinkedIn connection, and more than eight times more likely to apply than a Facebook follower, indicating that Twitter might be a highly underutilized social recruiting channel. And Twitter followings drive almost twice as many job views per job as their Facebook fan bases.
According to the report, 48 percent of recruiters use LinkedIn exclusively. These recruiters have an average of 661 connections, and don’t leverage the other two networks for social recruiting. From there, recruiters use Twitter more than Facebook. Despite the fact that recruiters have fewer connections on Twitter (37 followers on average), 19 percent are connected to both LinkedIn and Twitter, while only 10 percent are connected to both LinkedIn and Facebook (245 friends on average).

5 Out-of-Date Job-Search Tactics

Forget the fancy paper and piles of bullets — and never grovel

By Liz Ryan
“Is it still correct to use ‘Dear Sir or Madam’ in a cover letter?” a reader asked in an e-mail.

“That isn’t such a great idea,” I wrote back. “No one uses ‘Dear Sir or Madam’ anymore, unless they’re actually writing to a madam, such as Heidi Fleiss.” I’m not sure my e-mail correspondent caught the joke.

It’s not that using out-of-date job-search approaches brands you as older. Rather, it’s that using no-longer-in-fashion job search techniques marks you as out of touch.

Employers pay us, in part, to be aware of trends and phenomena that affect the workplace. Working people (and job-seekers) should follow the news, keep a bead on our changing world, and stay abreast of changes in business, technology, politics, and cultural shifts. That isn’t an unreasonable expectation. If a job-seeker isn’t curious and perceptive enough to notice that the last time he saw “Dear Sir or Madam” on a letter was around the time Chevy Chase impersonated Gerald Ford falling down the stairs, how will he notice what’s changing in his field?

Here are five formerly useful, now dangerous job-search approaches that hark back to an earlier age. Get them out of your job-search repertoire, pronto.

1. Dedicated Résumé Paper and Envelopes. Don’t use nubbly beige or pink or stone-grey résumé paper, or any other kind of special paper or matching envelopes, in your job search. Dedicated-use résumé paper is a 1980s artifact. Most of your résumés will reach employers electronically, in which case the employer will print it out. For résumés you print on your own, use plain white bond paper. (If you want to use a heavier stock than usual, do it.) Keep résumé formatting simple. You don’t need horizontal lines or curlicues, unless you are yourself a creative person, in which case you can go hog-wild with artistic expression. What matters in your résumé is its content. You won’t win any points with a résumé or cover letter on fancy paper that whispers, “I have a stack of Christopher Cross cassettes in my car.”

2. Creaky Cover Letter Language. When I read “Dear Sir or Madam,” I instantly get a picture of a person wearing white gloves and carrying tiny mother-of-pearl opera glasses in her handbag. Don’t get me wrong—I have opera glasses and I wish white gloves were still in style. They’re not. Never use “Dear Sir or Madam”—or its cousin, “To Whom It May Concern”—in a cover letter for the same reason. In 2012, companies are porous. We can find our hiring manager’s name in two seconds using LinkedIn. We are obliged to try: Correspondence that begins “To Whom It May Concern” means death to a job search. “Dear Hiring Manager” is just as bad. Find the name of the relevant person or lob a résumé into the Black Hole and skip the cover letter altogether.

Tactics 3 – 5 and Complete Yahoo Finance Article