Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Rev up your job search during Christmas time

By on Dec 12, 2011 in Job Search

Many people believe the myth that companies stop hiring during the whirlwind of winter holidays. Although hiring does taper in December, hiring activity never really stops — something to consider if you’re considering ramping up the job hunt in the new year.

This is the time when companies finalize their budgets for the coming year or make last minute cutbacks to improve the year-end bottom line. But, they’ll also know if they’ll be hiring or expanding their employee base in the near future.

The economy and labour market may still be fragile, but many companies may start their talent recruitment campaigns before the recession actually ends as they attempt to secure the best talent before the competition does.

The smart job seeker can take advantage of having an edge over their competitors who have become lax in searching. Here are some job tips for the year-end job seeker.

Beef up your portfolio.
Print and take home personal files on your computer and locate copies of your performance appraisals and other personnel records. At the same time, update your CV with all of the past year’s skills and accomplishments. Make PDFs of any work samples, presentations, published work and research.

Begin immediately.
If the bad news is that most layoffs occur during the last three months of the year, the good news is that the period towards the end of the year is one of the best times to find a job. “Because budget approvals expire at the end of the year, there is a sense of urgency among hiring managers and recruiters,” explains Human Resources expert Lori Kocon. “Yet while HR is usually in full recruiting mode, most people put their job searches on hold during the holidays. The result is it’s more of a candidate’s market.”

More Advice and Complete CareerBuilder Article

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Follow Your Passion Is Bad Career Advice For Most People

Caroline Ceniza-Levine, Contributor   

I recently spoke on a panel on “How to Advance At Every Stage in Your Career” generously hosted by Google for diversity professionals in advertising. Topics ranged from job search to career progression to mentorship and giving back, and at every turn, most of the advice centered around passion. How do you distinguish yourself from the competition? Show your PASSION! How do you change careers? Win naysayers over with your PASSION! How do you get a promotion? Be more PASSIONATE!

I have to say that I too contributed to the passion parade because I said (and I still stand by this) that if you ask 10 recruiters who they would choose between the average skilled but much more passionate candidate v. the highly skilled but lukewarm candidate, all 10 would pick the passionate one.

But a focus on passion is dangerous and outright bad advice for most people.

The recruiting observation I made about how passion wins in the end is based on comparing two candidates that both meet the skill requirements BEFORE passion plays into the equation. If you don’t have the skills, expertise or background for the job, you can jump up and down with all the passion in the world and it won’t make a difference.

Read the rest of the Forbes article

Caroline Ceniza-Levine helps people find fulfilling and financially-rewarding career paths, as the co-founder of SixFigureStart®, career coaching by former Fortune 500 recruiters.  She is the co-author of “Six Steps To Job-Search Success” 2011, Flat World Knowledge and of the best-selling “How the Fierce Handle Fear: Secrets to Succeeding in Challenging Times” 2010, Two Harbors Press.  She is also a stand-up comic with Comic Diversity.  Caroline welcomes your comments and questions.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Brad Pitt Did It: 3 Smart Tips to Reinvent Your Career

Brad Pitt recently announced that he’s planning his retirement from acting.

That’s right. Brad Pitt, mega star of mega stars, is planning to leave acting in favor of his other great love, producing.

While this intended career change has left many reeling, simply ask yourself: why not?  Why shouldn’t Pitt (or, for that matter, anyone) leave their current job for something else that could be more meaningful or satisfying? Are we really meant to work in one mode for a lifetime?

I don’t think so. In the end, it’s better to be happy with what you do than to boast a lifelong, monotonous career, right?

While mid-life career switches can seem dizzingly romantic and exciting, they can also be frustrating, fruitless, and terrifying if done the wrong way.

Check out these three tips to reinvent your career the smart way:

The worst thing you can do for yourself is to quit your job and expect to smoothly transition into a new career. Spend the beginning of your transition research your options. Absorb as much information as possible about the career of your dreams, different companies that would hire you for the attitude and aptitude you have, and the industry (if you’re switching that as well).

Use your Google skills to find industry publications, blogs, and influential people. Hop onto your favorite social media platforms to find and start networking with peers, mentors, companies, and employers.

Read the top-rated books related to your newly chosen career path.  Schedule informational interviews and attend industry-specific conferences. Since you’re not starting as a new grad, you have more ground to cover. So, you will have lots of questions. Maintain a list of the questions for which you do not have answers after all your research. When you interact with peers, opinion leaders, and employers at these conferences, be prepared with good open-ended questions to ask.  This will help you to start conversations and engage people with a purpose at networking functions.

After polishing off the majority of your research, it’s time to figure out what you need to get hired. Brad Pitt isn’t going to jump into producing without any skills—he’s been working with producers for years, learning the ropes. Just like Brad, you need to hone your skills and develop your brand in this new discipline.

It could require a class or two (or a new degree) or work experience back at the bottom of the proverbial career ladder. It’s never too late to intern, so don’t rule out internships. They are sometimes your best option to get the experience and professional recognition at a new company, or when you are breaking into a new field. Pick experience and opportunities that will improve your skills and make you look more attractive to employers.

More Tips and Complete Career Rocketeer Article

Guest Expert:

Tony Morrison is the Vice President at Cachinko, a unique professional community where social networking and job opportunities come together. His roles include sales, marketing, and business development. He is passionate about building B2B and B2C client relationships and brings this passion to Cachinko where he focuses on helping job seekers to find their ideal job and employers to find, attract, and engage their next rock star candidates. Find him on Twitter and/or connect with Cachinko on Facebook or Twitter.

Friday, December 9, 2011

Getting hired when you're over 50

True, older job seekers face a few extra obstacles. But you may be able to overcome them by turning your age to your advantage. Here's how.

By Anne Fisher, contributor

FORTUNE -- Dear Annie: I read your recent column on bridging the generation gap in the workplace between young bosses and older employees. It struck a nerve with me, because, frankly, I'd be delighted to work for a young boss if I could just get one to hire me. I'm 53 and I was laid off last year from a senior marketing management position at a bank. Luckily, I have enough savings to live on for a while, since my job hunt seems to be taking forever.

All goes well until I show up for an interview with a 30-something hiring manager or HR person, and then I hear, "Oops! Sorry, the position has been filled, but thanks for coming in." I'd like to think this isn't because, like most people in their fifties, I have a few gray hairs and laugh lines, but it's hard to draw any other conclusion. Do you and your readers have any suggestions for me? — Not Dead Yet

Dear N.D.Y.: Cold comfort though it may be, a long job hunt is perfectly normal these days, especially for anyone seeking a senior management job. "The higher your rank in your last position, the longer it takes to find a new one," says Mark Anderson, president of ExecuNet, a national career network for $100,000-a-year-plus senior managers.

ExecuNet's research shows, for example, that a vice president over age 50 takes 20% longer to get hired than a 41-to-45-year-old job seeker at the same level. But age is only part of the story. The main reason it now takes the average management job candidate at least 10 months to get hired is that "companies are taking longer to fill positions," Anderson notes. "Many companies who have management openings are not aggressively looking to fill them."

He points to a new ExecuNet survey that says that only 16% of employers plan to hire executives over the next six months, a big decrease from about 30% earlier this year.

Job interviews can be especially difficult for executives over 50 who have spent their careers moving up through the ranks, or being recruited for better jobs, and thus have had little or no practice at selling themselves while unemployed, say executive coaches Tucker Mays and Bob Sloane.

Sloane and Mays are the founders and principals of OptiMarket, a Darien, Conn., coaching firm that specializes in helping older executives find jobs quickly. They also wrote a book, Fired at 50: How to Overcome the Greatest Executive Job Search Challenge. They offer four tips on making sure your job hunt does not, in fact, last "forever" (even if it seems that way):

1. Preempt the age issue. "If you're over 50, your age is the elephant in the room. Should you try to sweep it under the rug and hope it doesn't come up, or wait until it does and address it then?" asks Sloane. The answer: Neither. "All effective salespeople know that the best way to counter an anticipated objection is to address it first."

Instead of being defensive about your age, make it an asset. In cover letters, on your resume, and especially in interviews, "describe the abilities you've gained from experience that will give you an advantage over younger, less experienced candidates," he says. One example: Problem solving. "At age 50-plus, there are probably few business challenges you haven't faced," says Mays.

2. Describe your flexible management style. "There is a perception that over-fifty job seekers are set in their ways and reluctant to change. So talk about how you modified your approach to fit different situations and varied corporate cultures," Sloane suggests. "You can also mention how you responded to unanticipated problems like a product recall, the loss of a major client, or a new government regulation." The point is to show that you can roll with the punches as well as, or better than, any 35-year-old.

More Tips and Complete Fortune Article

Thursday, December 8, 2011

7 Important Things to Know About Job Hunting Online

Are you looking for a job? You'd better get your "digital brand" in order. That's the advice of Colleen Aylward, a recruitment strategy expert, who says that your online presence is your most important job search tool.

That place is increasingly on social media sites including Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn. Having a personal website can also help as well, Aylward said.
"Things will never go back to the way they were," she said. "The world is an online community now, and the future of your employment status is highly dependent on your ability to adapt."
Aylward offered these tips to those looking to build your online job hunting brand.
  • "Streamline your strengths with specific examples," Aylward said. "It’s not the interviewer’s job to figure out what your strengths might be; it’s the candidate’s job. The days of clever cover letters opening doors are gone. Those resumes and online profiles better be stronger than ever and packed with data and specific accomplishments."
  • "Don’t waste time with external executive recruiters. They don’t find jobs for people," she said. "You need to get in front of the internal corporate recruiters who are searching for you online. So help them do their job by researching companies online yourself, as well as locating jobs yourself, introducing yourself to a prospective employer and conversing directly with hiring managers — online."
  • "Remember, it’s all about them, not you," warned Aylward. "Get out of the mindset that matching yourself for a job or interviewing for a job is about you. It’s all about what you can do for them. That means defining your strengths and determining specific areas where you can solve their business problems. And be prepared to demonstrate that you have kept up with technology, industry changes and how the economy has affected them."
  • "Employers think that if you can't sell yourself, you can't sell their product. If you can't market yourself, you can't market their company," explained Aylward.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Reverse Engineering a Career

Charlie O'Donnell, First Round Capital

 run into a lot of people trying to switch careers and join a startup.  They're trying to get product positions and marketing jobs in particular, but they don't have any prior experience.  That leaves them in the infinite loop of not being able to get the job because you don't have experience, but not being able to get any experience, etc, etc.

It's a solvable problem.  You can do nearly absolutely anything within one or two years time--as long as you put your mind to it and construct a plan.  I'll talk more about this at my upcoming General Assembly talk, but here's the outline.

One of the inspirations behind the company I started in the career development space was a conversation I had with a Fordham student.  He was interested in venture capital and was a year away from graduation.  I realized that a position at Union Square Ventures was going to be open in a year and that he had a terrific chance of getting it.  He seemed perplexed that they'd even consider hiring someone out of school.  What I told him was that no other people had a year head start.  It was unlikely that *anyone* was thinking out a year ahead that getting that particular job was their goal.  He could decide right then and there that he was going to get that job in one year--he just had to do all sorts of stuff to be the number one recruit--after figuring out what that was.  It was an exercise in reverse engineering.

This can apply to most jobs--save for things like coding and design that tend to be more hard skill based.  However, I'd make the case that if you really did dedicate yourself to something, you could make a lot of headway in two years time--especially if you had some natural inclination.  Me, I can't draw my way out of a stick hat, so I'd be a lost cause--but a creative person could do a lot with design classes in two years.

In any case, you're going to have to start out with a very detailed job spec.  You need to know exactly what someone in this role is doing now--and there's no better way to do that then to just ask.  If you want to be in venture capital, ask a bunch of junior VC types what they actually do all day, and ask a bunch of partners what they expect the junior VC types to do all day (I wonder if this would come anywhere close to matching up.)  Write down all the tasks done, skills used, etc. and see which ones overlap the most.
Those are the "requireds" and the rest are the "preferred".  See if you can group these attributes into types.  Some product managers might be more technical, working on feature requirements and interfacing with the engineering team, while others might be more like brand managers who are the GM of their brands.  Not every employee needs to be the same, but everyone needs to be awesome in some way--just figure out the various types of awesome that fit into that particular role.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

25 Tips For Job-Seekers: Getting Started on Twitter

by Susan Whitcomb


There’s been lots of buzz about it. Perhaps you even visited the site, created an account, or dabbled with tweeting. Not love at first sight, right? If you’re like most people, you’re not alone in wondering, “What’s the point? How can this cacophonous site — crammed with apparently tangential, disconnected information — possibly help my job search?”
Do keep an open mind! Although Twitter has a learning curve (as is the case with all good things), you can find value from Day One, whether just dabbling as a NOOB (Twitter shorthand for newbie) or committing to becoming a power user. Here are 25 tips to get you started:
  • Lurk First. Sit back and study what’s happening on Twitter before jumping in with both feet. You can do this even before setting up your own Twitter account by going directly to Twitter user’s streams (for example, you can see my Twitter stream at or my coauthors in The Twitter job Search Guide (JIST, 2010), and You can also visit and search keywords of interest to you.
  • Think Strategic When Setting Up Your Twitter Account. Many people vacillate between using their own personal name (such as JohnDoe) or profession (such as CFOintheKnow). There are advantages to both, but using your real name can add to your name recognition. If you have a common name that is already taken on Twitter and want to use your name, add a designation that matches your profession, such as JohnDoeCPA or JohnDoeSalesExec.
  • Write an Employer-Focused “160me” for Your Twitter Profile. Twitter allows you 160 characters max to describe who you are. Give them a taste of the return-on-investment they’ll receive from hiring you. For example: “Go-to resource for publicity for nonprofits. Earned org’s cover stories in regional mags; PR delivered 10s of thousands in contributions.”
  • Point Employers to More Information. In your profile, include a link to a site where employers can get more information about you, such as your resume at or your profile at
  • Include a Professional Photo. Leaving off a photo is an invitation for people to dismiss you. Your photo should be as professional as you look when going to an interview — your absolute best. A greater sense of connection seems to take place between followers and followees when each of you can see what the other really looks like. If you use an avatar, be on brand. Some people use avatars rather than a real photo — these sites are great starting points for avatars: and
  • Don’t Rush to Follow at First. When you follow people on Twitter, it’s likely they will consider following you back. If your history of tweets (your “tweet stream”) isn’t interesting or it’s non-existent, you’ll lose the opportunity to gain new followers. Instead, put out some interesting tweets first.
  • Tweet On-Brand. Tweet primarily about things that relate to your profession. Read news feeds, blogs, and other resources for relevant, fresh content.
  • Set Up Google Alerts for Tweet Content. Go to to set up alerts for industry trends, news on your target companies, and more sent directly to your email. You can then be the first to tweet about it.
Complete Article and All 25 Job Seeking Tips

Friday, December 2, 2011

5 Ways to Track, Measure and Optimize Your Job Search

by Rich DeMatteo

During the Social Media Plus summit here in Philadelphia, I had time to chat with Michelle Bizon, a local pal that I’ve known through the interwebs for a while, but had never met IRL. Naturally, Michelle and I talked at length about her job search, and I immediately noticed that she needed more focus.

I won’t go into details, but when I began giving her tips on how to organize, track, and measure her job search, she agreed that I should turn this advice into a blog post. Well, here it is…

…and damn, I’m extremely proud of this step by step guide I’ve created. Honestly, it may be the most useful blog post I’ve ever wrote for job seekers. Let’s get to it…

1. Write Out EVERYTHING You Want and Need from a Job
When you aren’t clear about the exact jobs you want to apply for, then you end up sending your resume to everything on the damn internet. It’s a terrible strategy. In the end, you forget which jobs you even looked at, and it comes across as desperate to employers.

Write out a list of 15-50 things that you WANT and NEED from your next job. Write down everything from the location, to hours, to type of company, to industry, to type of manager, to the skill sets the job description requires, to… you get the point.

Have this master sheet available at all times and only apply to jobs that match. When you do this correctly, you’re able to ensure you’re applying to jobs that you WILL love and be much more focused when actually looking for jobs.

2. Use The List You Create in Step 1 to Build Your Resume and Cover Letter
If you’re REALLY successful at building your jobs wish list, you’ll find that the positions you want to apply for online will have the same words in both your wish list and job description. Since most employers use ATS Systems that track key words found in the resume and job description, you’ll want to boost the words from your wish list into your resume and cover letter.

Make sense?  I’m going to assume it does, but if not, just shout out and let me know in the comments.

3.  Set Weekly Application Submission Goals
Great, you’ve figured out what your must haves are for your next job and you’ve built a focused resume and cover letter that matches job descriptions that you’re interested in. Now it’s time to set your weekly submission goals!
It’s important to set a weekly submission goal for a few reasons.
  • If you don’t set submission goals, you’ll either spend far too little time on your job search or far too much time. Both are really bad for you physically and mentally.
  • Establishing a routine is important in a job search.
  • If you’re not successful, you know that you need to increase your submission goal.
Start out low (5-10) and then increase after a couple weeks if you aren’t successful at first.

Tips 4 - 5 And Complete Article

Thursday, December 1, 2011

How To Job Search During The Holiday Season


By Heather Huhman

Many people believe job searching between Thanksgiving and New Year's Eve is unadvisable, but this is a huge misinterpretation! This is a great time for job seekers because companies don't just stop working during the holiday season. Plus, it puts you at an advantage among other job seekers because many people don't look for jobs around the end of the year.

Here are some important tips on how to search for jobs during the holiday season:

Be Flexible

Many companies try to hire candidates before the end of the year, so it is important to remain flexible during the interview process. Another reason to stay flexible is because hiring managers will be out of the office for different events, personal time, and holiday activities. If you demonstrate you can work around these speed bumps, then you will be good to go!

Stay Focused On Your Social Media Accounts
Just because it is the holiday season doesn't mean you should forget about your Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn pages! These are great ways to connect with people and could be helpful in finding networking events.

Attend Networking Parties or Events
Speaking of networking events...between Thanksgiving and New Year's Eve, there are plenty of opportunities! No matter where you're going, whether it is a party with friends or family, you should think of it as a good chance to get your name out there. You never know who you could meet! Keep your options open. Hint: Always have business cards on you so you can hand them out.

Read The Test Of The Article For More Advice

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

What Works — and What Doesn’t — in a Social Media-Based Job Hunt

Brazen Life

We’ve all seen them: the online efforts of eager job hunters, clawing at their social media dream jobs like 12-year-olds at a Justin Bieber concert. They’re interesting. They’re flashy. They’re “outside the box.”

But do they actually work?

Most of these social media stunts gain attention for a hot minute, either in the job seeker’s local newspaper, or, if they’re lucky, on a career blog like this one, before fading into obscurity.
So is it worth developing a job-hunting campaign as part of your next search? Let’s take a look at your predecessors:

Hire Me Krispy Kreme

Braden Young, a fervent fan of the sugar-laced doughnut chain, saw an opening on their team for a sales and marketing manager in Philadelphia, and went all-out with an attention-grabbing cover letter, plus Facebook and Twitter pages. His campaign is detailed in this post by Corn on the Job.

What worked: Young was already passionate about the company he was applying to work for, which came through in his content. But most importantly, he had the skills to back up the ostentatious way he handled the job search. He articulated his qualifications in a succinct and memorable way.

What didn’t: Not much to complain about with this job seeker. He heard from Krispy Kreme four hours after launching his campaign, and guess what? He got the job.

Hire Me Chipotle

Bianca Cadloni created a website devoted to her efforts to snag a social media and PR gig for the Mexican grill, with the words “WILL WORK FOR GUACAMOLE” greeting all visitors to the site. Different sections such as “Social Media” and “Public Relations” detailed her qualifications, in addition to a digital version of her resume.

What worked: She used a Twitter handle, @HireMeChipotle, as well as a hashtag by the same name to get the word out and corral all discussions related to her search. Also, she made herself personable in her content, talking about her first experience with the restaurant chain, and inserting her voice in all communications.

What didn’t: Unfortunately, this job seeker didn’t even get to the interview phase. Even with a solid website and social media efforts, I have a feeling the decision came down to experience. With two short internships under her belt and some editorial work for a niche online magazine, it’s tough to stand taller than other candidates with even two or three years of public relations experience.

Chipotle’s communications director emailed Cadloni to let her know she’d been noticed, but in a candidate pool of roughly 500 people, there was no guarantee they’d even be able meet her in person.
“I stood out in a sea of resumes, but with the job market this tough, even a #HireMe campaign isn’t enough,” Cadloni said in her farewell blog post. So what’s her advice for job-seekers who are considering a similar campaign? “Set yourself apart from other candidates by owning your online presence. … Write a blog about the industry trends in your market. … Confidence is catchy.”

Dear Lisa Rudgers

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Job seekers turning to Facebook

You would think that job seekers would cling to LinkedIn because it’s a professional networking site, while Facebook is more for family and friends. But a new research report from Jobvite says that the opposite is true: 48 percent of job seekers have used Facebook in their job search, while only 26 percent have used LinkedIn. Job seekers are receiving more referrals and have filled out their profiles more completely on Facebook than they do on LinkedIn.

Overall, one in every six workers used social networks to get hired this year.  Here are three tips on how to better utilize Facebook to land the job of your dreams:

Focus on your current friends
Instead of trying to build your network on Facebook, try and leverage the relationships you already have. Most job seekers are either too afraid to ask for support or don’t want people knowing that they are job searching in the first place. You need to let people know what you’re looking for if you want them to help you.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Don’t ignore the December recruiter

By Marc Cenedella

We hear the same complaint every year:

“I can’t get candidates on the phone. I can’t get candidates in for interviews. I can’t even get a response.”
We hear it from Fortune 1000 recruiters, HR departments, executive search firms and agencies. We even hear it from our own recruiters at TheLadders!

And I suppose it’s a very good explanation that, of course, at the end of the year, with all the holiday parties, end-of-the-year budgeting exercises, and vacation planning going on, professionals can find themselves with too much to do and not enough time on their hands to be responsive to the companies looking to hire them.

But my advice is…

Don’t let this happen to you.

Candidates, i.e., your competition, get very distracted during the holidays with all the family and friends and festivities to enjoy.

Turn this to your advantage.

Rather than allowing your holiday schedule to get in the way of your search, double down and make an extra effort to be proactive this December.

You see, for every candidate who misses a phone call, an interview, a job opportunity, there’s a frustrated recruiter on the other side. And if you can be that golden ticket — the responsive candidate who makes life easier for the recruiter or HR department — you’ll be that much more likely to land a gig before the end of the year.

Read The Rest Of The Article

Marc Cenedella is the CEO & Founder of, the world’s leading career network.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Great Career Advice From Country Hall of Famer Roy Clark


Roy Clark was a young boy when he got some sage advice about music that he's used to guide his entire career.

“My dad played music — never as a living, but he was a good guitar player and banjo player — and he told me something very early in my life,” Clark, 78, said in a phone interview from his home in Tulsa, Okla.

“He said, ‘Don't close your mind off to anything you hear that is new until your heart hears it. At first, you may hear something that you don't really think is your cup of tea, but if you listen to it long enough with an open mind and an open heart, you'll hear something that is going to inspire you.'”

Clark is best known as a country singer and as the co-host of the classic TV variety show “Hee Haw” — impressive credentials, indeed, but not ones that instantly reveal the diversity the Virginia native has displayed as a professional musician for the past six decades.

A guitar virtuoso and a highly respected multi-instrumentalist, Clark has delved into an assortment of genres ranging from country and bluegrass to jazz and rock 'n' roll.

One of his earliest jobs, in fact, was as a sideman for Wanda Jackson just as she was transitioning from rockabilly to country in the early 1960s.

“That's what started me trying to build a career of my own,” Clark said. “I was playing clubs around Washington, D.C., and I guess that's where I was going to be (for the rest of my life). … And then Wanda came to town, and we met through some mutual friends, and she said she was getting ready to open in Las Vegas and that she was putting a band together to go to the Golden Nugget.”

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Career advice from the ‘Headhuntress’


A meeting with Wendy Doulton isn’t easy to come by. As a headhunter for high-profile clients such as Amazon, Gap and Sony, she’s responsible for finding the best talent to fill positions that command paychecks beginning in the six figures. Don’t have the résumé to land that interview? She’s also the founder of coaching service Katalyst Career Group, but be warned: She won’t hold back when your skirt suit is too tight, and she doesn’t like being bored.

Tonight, however, you can get a sneak peek of what Doulton’s looking for in a Fortune 500 executive when her Bravo special, “The Headhuntress,” premieres. While she’s the perfect reality star — successful, intense and quick with sharp, British-accented one-liners — she was more than gracious when we asked her to share some of her core career advice. Here’s how to land on Doulton’s radar — or at least avoid incurring the wrath of her tough love.

Know what you offer

Before looking for a job, spend some time evaluating yourself. “My foundational coaching is to know who you are and know what you bring to the party,” says Doulton. “Pay very close attention to anything that affects your mood — positively or negatively — and let that inform you.”

Interview your interviewer

Interviews go both ways. “The trick here isn’t to answer the question right, it’s to get the job that’s right for you,” she says. “It’s like a date: ‘Does he like me, does he like me?’ Well, do you like him? Do you want to have coffee and breakfast with him every day of your life?”

Be positive - Read the rest of the Metro article

Monday, November 14, 2011

Upcoming Interview? Success Starts with the Right Mindset

Self-confidence is a powerful, but often elusive, asset when interviewing.  Stiff competition, concerns over qualifications and the uncertainty inherent in the interview process can easily rattle even the most poised job seeker.

Just as you prepare your answers to interview questions, you should also prepare to be confident.  Use this list of techniques to enter your next interview with the right mindset:  calm, self-assured and ready for anything the interviewer throws your way.

Keep the interview in perspective.  One constructive way to manage your fear is by putting your interview into the proper context.  Instead of viewing it as an interrogation, think of it as a conversation.  Remember, you are interviewing the potential employer as much as he is interviewing you.  To boost your confidence, research the company and prepare a list of questions to ask during the interview.

Practice, practice, practice.  If you rehearse answers to common interview questions you’ll be more confident answering them.  Use a tape/digital recorder or webcam to record yourself, or simply practice saying your answers out loud in front of a mirror.  Sure, it will feel awkward at first, but after you get past your self-consciousness you will be able to critically examine yourself.  Are you sitting up straight?  Making appropriate eye contact?  Gesturing too little or too much?  What about your answers – are they concise and relevant?  Once you are confident in your delivery, ask a trusted friend or relative to act as your interviewer.  Ask for their honest feedback, so you can further refine your presentation.

Realize that it’s natural to be nervous.  Do you typically feel uptight before an interview?  This is a perfectly natural response.  In fact, a little bit of anxiety can actually be beneficial.  When you are nervous, your body releases adrenaline, a hormone which raises your energy level.  The key is to control your reaction to this feeling, before it takes control of you.  Learn to recognize an adrenaline surge when it occurs, realize that it’s normal, and then channel the energy you get from it.

Try calming techniques.  What should you do if your nerves get the best of you?  Stop them in their tracks – before you walk into the building.  Controlled breathing is a great technique to help you relax and focus.  If you feel anxious, try closing your eyes and taking a few deliberate, shallow breaths.  Take in air through your nostrils and exhale, quietly, through your mouth.  Repeat a few times until you feel better.

Read the rest of the article

  • About David Allen

    I am the President and CEO of Snelling Staffing Services, LLC, based in Dallas, TX. Leveraging my years of C-level business experience in the financial and service sectors, I help clients and candidates use Snelling’s services to achieve the success they desire. 
  • Thursday, November 3, 2011

    Job Search Got You Down? 6 Bits of Advice from Famous Folks

    By Anthony Morrison
    Quotes are powerful. No matter where you are in your life, a good quote can make you smile, give you that extra motivation you needed, or help you learn about yourself.

    Your job search is no different. I’ve done some research and found six valuable quotes from presidents and television personalities that can help just about any job seeker looking for that extra boost.
    Read these through and think about how they can help you find the right job. Maybe one of these will find themselves on your bulletin board or fridge!

    “You always pass failure on the way to success.”
    Mickey Rooney
    Got rejected? Flubbed an interview? Maybe you were late to an important meeting. Whatever the case may be, when you face a fork in the road make decision and march forward. The only bad decision is indecision or quitting. Rarely does one simple mistake mean that you’re doomed forever.

    “No man ever listened himself out of a job.”
    Calvin Coolidge
    Whether you’re networking, interviewing, or working, remember what our 30th president says about listening. While your perfect job involves you offering your own ideas, every employer wants to know that their employees are listening to them. Think before you speak so that you sound intelligent and thoughtful.

    “Never continue in a job you don’t enjoy. If you’re happy in what you’re doing, you’ll like yourself, you’ll have inner peace. And if you have that, along with physical health, you will have had more success you could possible have imagined.”
    Johnny Carson
    Johnny loved his job and you should too. You might be thinking about the tough job market and that you should value the job you have, even if you don’t love it. That’s also true.

    If you’re not happy in your job, hold onto it while still networking and getting your foot in the door at other companies. As long as you’re fair to your current employer, you have every right to look for a job that makes you happy.

    Wednesday, November 2, 2011

    Resume Error #1: Believing Your Resume Will Get You the Job

    And the Number 1 Resume Wrong is … believing your resume will get you the job.

    You should view your resume as a tool, but your resume is only one of many tools that you will need for your job search.

    A great resume cannot guarantee you will be hired. Resumes are not meant to get you the job, they are meant to get you an interview. No one is ever hired based on their resume alone. This doesn’t mean your resume isn’t important, if your resume is poor you won’t even make it to the interview stage, so in that sense you could say a poor resume might prevent you from getting the job.

    An effective resume should highlight your credentials and the skills that match the opening. This is the information that the hiring manager or recruiter needs to determine if you should be called in for an interview. This is why I encourage you to keep your resume simple and on point. Many job seekers make the mistake of trying to anticipate and include answers to all the possible questions they might be asked in an interview in their resumes. I cannot say this enough: Your resume is not meant to tell your life story!

    My point here is that you shouldn’t put so much effort into your resume that you neglect other steps in the job search. You should put equal or as much emphasis on your interviewing skills. I don’t care how great your resume is; you must ace the interview, or it’s over. Stay tuned for some interviewing tips next time!

    You can find and download resume tools at

    Resume Errors 2 - 5 

    Tuesday, November 1, 2011

    The 10 Worst Mistakes of First-Time Job Hunters

    By Kelly Eggers

    If you're in your final year of college, be warned: the rumors about landing a job in this economy are true. You should be taking steps today, not next semester, to prepare yourself.

    An April 2011 survey conducted by Braun Research on behalf of Adecco Staffing U.S. found that 71% of 500 recent four-year college graduates would have done something differently to prepare for the job market. While companies will hire 9.5% more graduates from the class of 2012 than they did from the 2011 graduating class, according to another poll, employers are still looking for the pick of the litter.
    "When you're not familiar with the job market or job seeking, you really don't know how much effort it will take," said Kathy Kane, senior vice president of talent management for Adecco NA,
    To find out what students can do to better prepare for the current job market, we spoke with career coaches, recruiters and recent graduates.

    "I would have started looking for jobs earlier."
    Putting off your job hunt isn't a wise move. Among the Adecco survey's respondents, 26% said they would have started looking for potential positions earlier.
    "It's easy to fall into 'my weekend starts on Thursday' mode, rather than 'I've got to put my job search into full gear today' mode," said Kane, "but procrastinators will have fewer choices."
    Most students don't start thinking about their careers until they have to, said Lindsey Pollak, a career expert who focuses on Generation Y in the workplace. "There's so much you can do that's not a lot of work and not overly time consuming."
    "I would have actually networked."

    For students and older professionals alike, networking can feel like the most dreaded part of a job hunt. Twenty-nine percent of respondents to the Adecco survey said they would have spent more time building a solid professional network.
    "Networking can be scary," said Pollak, "but about 70% of jobs are found through networking." Students who spend their time trolling job boards should instead spend that time making solid connections with people who are respected and involved in the workforce, industry experts and alumni, and spend only 30% of their time looking at job listings.
    For the most part, Pollak said, people love to help students. As long as you are gracious and thankful and not trying to hard-sell yourself right off the bat, potential connections are likely to be receptive.

    "I would have taken on a job or an internship in addition to my courseload."
    Bottom line: There's no substitute for experience.

    Having some professional experience under your belt before entering the workforce has become a necessity for many employers.

    "I don't know a company that doesn't want people with internship experience," said Pollak. "My advice is to get yourself through the recession any way you can, and come out with whatever experience you can."

    Look for internships that provide college credit or are paid. Otherwise, gain work experience in a setting such as waiting tables -- and talk with people at each and every table. "There are CEOs who started networking while they were waiting tables," Pollak said.
    If you can't find a full- or part-time position on- or off-campus, try going to the Internet for virtual work. "There are jobs you can get without even leaving your dorm room," Pollak said, including maintaining someone's social media outlets, working as a copyeditor or building a website for a small business. Many of these types of jobs have flexible hours, an added benefit for busy students.

    "I would have gotten more involved in career-relevant extracurricular activities."

    Read The Complete FINS Article

    Tuesday, September 13, 2011

    Six Networking Coups to Win Jobs

    Careers columnist and former HR executive Liz Ryan shares tales of clever job hunters who scored big-time by making networking mutually gratifying

    Recently we wrote about cringe-inducing networking fiascoes. In each of those stories, someone made a mess of a networking opportunity by forgetting what networking is all about. Instead of going into the interaction with the attitude that “I want to find out more about you and share a bit of myself, too, so we can see where our mutual interests lie,” the individuals were searching haplessly for some business-type holy grail—a new client, an introduction, free advice—and damaged, if not destroyed, a new relationship in the process.

    Luckily, for every networker who shoots himself in the foot, there’s one (or a dozen) more making great things happen for himself and other people in the networking arena. Here are six stories of networkers who used human connections to build their platforms, credibility, and knowledge base, establishing great relationships and never losing sight of the Golden Rule.

    “How Can I Help You?” Networking Pays Off

    Tammy was job-hunting. She’d read reams about networking but felt uncomfortable reaching out to strangers to ask for their help. She told me, “If I research these people and their organizations, I can reach out to them to offer help with something they’re working on, not to ask for their help.” One day, Tammy called a local not-for-profit agency’s executive director. “My sister volunteered with you until she moved out of town,” said Tammy, “and she said you’re always in need of volunteers. Would it be helpful if I put a volunteers-wanted notice on the neighborhood online discussion forum?” “That would be fantastic!” said the executive director. “You’re so kind to do that. What could I do for you?” “Well, I am job-hunting,” said Tammy, “and expert advice is always welcome. I don’t suppose you would have time to meet with me one day?” Of course, she did, and she was an enormous help and job-search booster to Tammy. The executive director gave Tammy three incredible introductions for her job search. Moral: Don’t lead with “Here’s what I need,” but rather “Perhaps I can help you with an item on your list.”

    Networking for the Long Haul

    I hosted a weekend conference and retreat for working women, and hired a dozen interns from local universities to help with the event. All 12 of them were spunky and proactive, but one of the undergrads stood out. Her name is Swati. At the end of the conference, Swati, just 19 years old at the time, told me, “I’ve talked with all or nearly all of the women in attendance this weekend, to understand their career paths and learn from them. I got so much great advice!” Swati stayed in touch with me after that weekend, via LinkedIn and e-mail. I was a reference-giver for her first job (merchandising for a major retailer) after college. She’s kept me abreast of her twists and turns and stays current on my shifts, as well. Eight years later she is an accomplished career woman, and who could be surprised? Not many teenagers would have managed that weekend-long networking opportunity so thoughtfully. Moral: Networkers who cultivate relationships over time have huge advantages over people who treat networking as a right-now, transactional affair.

    Kids Understand This Stuff

    A young woman came into one of my workshops and told this story. “I saw a billboard on the highway, advertising a local restaurant. It’s an old-school, red-velvet-curtain type of place, very expensive, more my parents’ or grandparents’ kind of place than mine. I thought ‘Geez, billboard advertising must cost a fortune!’ I do social media consulting, so I called the restaurant’s marketing director.

    “I told him that I’d seen the billboard and I loved it, that I’d never been to the restaurant before and had never thought about going, but the billboard got me over that hump and I’d made reservations for myself, my boyfriend, and my parents. He was elated. I said, ‘Most people my age find out about restaurants through social media and deal sites, but I’m sure you’ve got a good reason not to use those channels.’ The guy just started gushing: ‘Yes, of course, I’d never tarnish my restaurant’s good name on those tawdry coupon sites, people call me every day wanting to do my social media marketing, it’s all wrong for us,’ etc. He wanted to have his point of view acknowledged, and who can blame him for that? I listened to him on that topic for 10 or 15 minutes. Then he said, ‘You’re the demographic we really want to reach. Would you consider having coffee with me?’

    Stories 4 - 6 and More Advice

    Monday, September 12, 2011

    It’s OK to Brag! 4 Ways to Show Off Your Career Accomplishments

    Put yourself in an employer’s shoes. You have limited resources, no time, and you need to hire the best possible candidate for the job. You got a ton of applications, but who is the best?
    When you’re looking at a huge stack of applications listing goals, skills, and experience, all you want are results. Insert the career accomplishment story. Check out these four ways you can show off your career accomplishments:

    In a cover letter
    Your cover letter is the first thing that any employer is going to see, so you want to make it count. A great way to pull distracted eyes back to you is to open your letter with a succinct and profound career accomplishment story. Answer this: What is going to make an employer really consider you as a candidate?

    On a LinkedIn profile
    LinkedIn is a great place to bring up your career accomplishments, in depth. Using LinkedIn’s recommendations feature, try asking your colleagues and supervisors to recommend you using a specific example of an accomplishment.

    Thursday, September 8, 2011

    Career Management Is Leadership Behavior

    You must take responsibility for your own career future since it's not your boss's job to look out for you. Many people are blindsided by lay-offs and downsizings that are economy driven and don't have anything to do with work performance. We are all expendable so it's imperative to have a short-term and long-term plan and be in charge of your own career destiny so it never happens by default.
    Here are some great tips to help you become more pro-active as you develop and implement your personal career action plan.

    Network Before You Need It -- you should always be growing your professional community even when you are not job searching. Think of it as building relationships, an opportunity to stay on top of current trends, and a chance to share your strengths story and abilities with others. The hidden job market is alive and well since approximately 80 percent of jobs are still never posted. People hire who they know and trust so you must not be a well-kept secret. Get out there and meet people face-to-face so you are ready when opportunity knocks, or when you need to rally your troops for advice and counsel. Remember to be a good networker and pay-it-forward to others in need.

    Have an Exit Strategy -- with mergers & acquisitions in the corporate and non-profit arena part of the new normal, you must be ready to leave on your own terms before the pink slips are distributed along with the new company letterhead. Consider where you want to go when things are going well on the job so you have the luxury of thinking clearly, without stress and can plan your next steps well in advance.

    Always Tell Your Strengths Story -- men have been talking about what they do well with confidence for decades and women lag far behind in promoting themselves. You must be your own best self advocate and learn to talk about what you do well so you can articulate your unique special sauce and professional worth. Consider the humble confidence mindset so you can brag comfortably in your own skin about the accolades you have earned. Remember nobody gave you these success stories -- you worked your tail off to earn them.

    Keep Your Resume/Portfolio Current -- things change fast so you need to have your resume/CV or professional portfolio polished and ready when opportunity knocks or when you find yourself in job search mode. Share your documents with trusted advisors to get their feedback on what your professional persona is on paper and how effective your materials are at showcasing you at your best. Seek out the services of a professional resume writer if you need expert assistance.

    Don't Rely on Your Boss to Grow Your Career - More advice and complete article

    Caroline Dowd-Higgins authored the book "This Is Not the Career I Ordered" and maintains the career reinvention blog of the same name ( She is also the Director of Career & Professional Development and an Adjunct Faculty member at Indiana University Maurer School of Law.

    Wednesday, September 7, 2011

    Job Searching with Social Media (for Dummies)

    A few months back, I wrote an article titled Like It or Not, Social Media is a Business Imperative with tips from Joshua Waldman, an expert in social media and founder of Career Enlightenment.
    When I interviewed him, he told me he was hard at work on a new book, and I knew it was going to be good. He asked his publisher to send me an advance copy, and I am remarkably impressed.

    Job Searching with Social Media for Dummiesis the latest in the "For Dummies" series, and it's chock-full of up-to-the-minute information that is valuable for any job seeker, and really for anyone who wants to make sure that their social media presence is helping them as they build their career.

    There's far too much information in the book for me to even make a dent at it, as it is packed with different explanations, how-to tips, tools, shortcuts and websites that help you leverage social media for your job search.

    As a job search coach who needs to keep up on the latest job search techniques and methods, I love this book. I am definitely going to continue to study this in depth, and predict that my copy will soon be filled with highlighted sections, bookmarks and notes.

    If you are a job seeker, or just someone trying to get up to speed on using Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook and the plethora of new tools that consolidate, integrate and your online presence, this book is the place to look.
    Here are the things Joshua Waldman covers in the book:
    • Why your online presence matters.
      Today, you can count on recruiters and hiring managers searching for you on Google and making a make-or-break decision on what they find. He says that 50% of hiring managers feel they can determine if a candidate is going to be a personality fit with their group based on their social profiles.
    • Pay attention to how you brand yourself.
      Your online presence needs to be consistent and accurate to support your brand, and it's up to you to make sure that what comes up when someone puts your name into their Google search box makes you look good.
    • LinkedIn is the best tool for professional networkers today. Period.
      He goes into all of the details about how to make your LinkedIn profile complete, persuasive and enticing to employers, including how to expand your profile, get and give recommendations and use groups to your best advantage.
    • Expand your online presence to increase your chances of being found.

    Thursday, September 1, 2011

    Best career tips gleaned from 15 years of experience

    Sun Sentinel Columnist

    Flexibility is critical to anyone's career these days.

    My career has evolved several times. This column, for example, began 15 years ago as "Business Strategies," focusing on management. Later on, it became a career-advice column, and in recent years, the column has offered job-search advice.

    This column ends today, and while I'll miss doling out advice, I'm enthusiastic about my new focus: reporting job news, the employment picture and changes in South Florida's workplaces. Readers will see that news online, through my blog,, as well as in print. Email or call me about the job you have, the job you want or your thoughts about working in South Florida.

    I've enjoyed writing this column because it was always a learning experience. I hope my readers know more about good management practices, their rights in the workplace, how to find a job and how to deal with sticky work situations.

    In bringing this column to a close, I've selected some of the best career advice from my columns over the years. I've found this advice helpful in my own career, and I hope it serves you as well:

    Embrace change. A mentor taught me that "change is good." It may be uncomfortable, but in transitional times, we stretch and grow. In today's workplace, change is ever-present. You never want to be seen as resisting it — that marks you as "old school." Instead, embrace it and focus on the opportunity it presents.

    Keep your skills up-to-date. In journalism, I've learned Web publishing software, social media and other new tools in recent years. No matter what your field, it's important to stay attuned to industry changes, and to continually update your skills. If your employer is not providing the education you need, pursue it yourself — it is well worth the investment in your current and future employment.
    If LinkedIn, Twitter and other social media are not part of your toolbox, you may be falling behind. Don't let that happen; it's not that hard, and you may find some valuable business contacts.

    Be innovative. Gain a reputation as the employee who is always coming up with a new product or service idea.
    During the recession, cost-cutting was a key initiative. Fort Lauderdale employees at CompHealth, for example, came up with ideas to cut costs that added up to about $1 million in savings in 2009. Today, companies are looking for ways to increase consumer demand for their products or services. Be a contributor to your employer's growth.

    Avoid meltdowns.  - More advice and complete article

    Wednesday, August 31, 2011

    25 Career and Business Women Bloggers Worth Reading

    n my role as Section Editor for Career & Business at BlogHer I get to scour the internet looking for quality content to help you succeed. Career and business is central to many of our lives and yet it can sometimes feel hard to find voices that resonate with our heart, provide practical advice, and generally make us feel not so alone in our own journey. As a person who works with clients to discover and successfully create the work they are most meant to do in the world (and that goes far beyond just what job, field, or business you are in...) I know how important it is to have resources and support. It felt way too self-serving to include myself in my roundup of 25 women to read and yet I do want to invite you to check out my own blog (The Intuitive Intelligence™ blog) for some straight-shooting advice, interviews, and intuitive wisdom about careers and business.

    Now, onto the roundup... here are 25 women with something valuable to say and worth your time (in no particular order).
    • Now What Coaching Blog: Laura Berman Fortgang and her community offers great advice on reinventing your career and finding meaning in what you do.

    • Passion for Business: Karyn Greenstreet is a veteran small business expert who offers solid advice on all things entrepreneurial. Funny, smart, and real-world advice.

    • Escape from Cubicle Nation: Pam Slim will help you break free of the cubicle and succeed as an entrepreneur. Best-selling author with honest, down-to-earth inspiration and advice.

    • Penelope Trunk: The Brazen Careerist often ruffles a lot of feathers. Whether you love her, hate her, or somewhere in between, you can expect thought-provoking content here.

    • The Time Finder: Who couldn't use more time, right? Paula Eder is an expert at helping you invest your time in the right tasks and do them productively.

    Tuesday, August 30, 2011

    Career Advice From Steve Jobs - Video

    Emily Co

    Steve Jobs resigned from Apple and the whole world (not to mention my Facebook page) was abuzz with the news. The highly intelligent and enigmatic man has taught us a lot, through his speeches and by example. A true leader in many respects, his talent with words has been one of his most admired traits. His speeches have the ability to move and inspire.

    In a famous commencement speech Steve gave to Stanford in 2005, the Apple visionary advised students to never settle.

    I didn't see it then, but it turned out that getting fired from Apple was the best thing that could have ever happened to me. The heaviness of being successful was replaced by the lightness of being a beginner again, less sure about everything. It freed me to enter one of the most creative periods of my life.
    . . . I'm pretty sure none of this would have happened if I hadn't been fired from Apple. It was awful tasting medicine, but I guess the patient needed it. Sometimes life hits you in the head with a brick. Don't lose faith. I'm convinced that the only thing that kept me going was that I loved what I did. You've got to find what you love. And that is as true for your work as it is for your lovers. Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven't found it yet, keep looking. Don't settle. As with all matters of the heart, you'll know when you find it. And, like any great relationship, it just gets better and better as the years roll on. So keep looking until you find it. Don't settle.

    Monday, August 29, 2011

    What American Idol can teach you about your job search

    , Tampa Job Search Examiner

    Do you ever get tired of hearing the judges on American Idol say "keep it real" or "be yourself?" As annoying as it may be, it's actually good advice in a lot of areas of life - including your job search.
    Many times, job seekers try to be something they're not in order to tell the employer what they think they want to hear. But, that approach more often than not backfires because it comes across as fake and disinterested. The best thing you can do is to truly be yourself. Below are some tips to help you do that.
    • Know your strengths. This may go without saying, but a lot of people don't do themselves justice. The more you know what your strengths are, the better you can communicate them to a potential employer. 

    • Know how to sell yourself. Be sure you can clearly articulate what makes you the best candidate for the job using short, memorable phrases. 

    • Practice. Look at yourself in a mirror to see how you come across in an interview or networking environment. Ask a friend to observe you and make suggestions. 

    Friday, August 26, 2011

    Want an Unbeatable Résumé? Read These Tips from a Top Recruiter.

    Kerry Hannon

    “Can you take a look at my résumé and see what you think?” If I had a dollar for every time I’ve been asked this in the past year, I wouldn’t be rich, but I would have some extra dough.
    It’s true. Since I write about jobs and careers, it’s not surprising that I’ve been fielding calls from friends and colleagues, who want me to take a look at their résumé to see what’s missing, give some pointers.
    I try to help. They agonize over the details. They’re frustrated beyond belief. They shoot their résumés off in a flick of a button when they hear about a job opening, and then silence-no response.
    Sound familiar?

    I offer my two cents. (For more strategies to land a job when you’re over 55, read my post here.) But to get some deeper insight, I asked Tony Beshara, author of Unbeatable Résumés (Amacom, 2011), a Dallas-based recruiting and job placement powerhouse and president of Babich & Associates to share his secrets.

    KH: Why are people so obsessed with their résumé?
    TB: The primary reason people spend so much time, money, and effort in writing a résumé is that this is the one activity within the job search that they can control. Instead of picking up the phone and calling a prospective employer to ask for a face-to-face interview-risking potential rejection-people agonize over their résumés.
    Here’s the truth–it is rare to get hired by simply submitting a résumé –the purpose of the résumé is to help get you an interview. And at the interview, remember that 40 percent of a hiring decision is based on personality. You’ve got to get the interview and sell your pitutee off.

    KH: What makes an unbeatable résumé?
    TB: It has to be simple. No more than two pages. The average résumé gets read in 10 seconds. Be sure the content is on a level any high school senior could understand. In other words, the person looking at your résumé should be able to easily understand exactly who you have worked for and what that company does. Just because you know the company or it’s a big name like IBM, Boeing Corp, or Ford Motor Co, doesn’t mean everyone is familiar with what your specific division does.
    • Avoid the fancy-schmancy layout, font, and other special effects. Stick to traditional font of Times New Roman, 9 to 12 point size, and black type against a white paper. You might try a different type size for your name and the companies you have worked for, perhaps your title. But try to be consistent. Go easy on boldface type, italics, and underlining.

    • Prepare it in a simple Word format that can easily be viewed on most computers. Not a table format or template.

    • Use a reverse chronological order. List your present, or most recent job, first, and then work backwards. You state the complete name of the company you work for, or have worked for, and what they do, how long you were there–month and year. Then list the position you held and your accomplishments. You don’t have to use full sentences. Begin with verbs. “Managed company tax reporting, finance, invoicing, purchasing,” for example.

    • Get rid of objectives and summary and all that silly stuff. It’s all fluff. An employer doesn’t care about your objective. He cares about his.

    • Skip personal information such as married with three kids. Sounds stable to you. But to a hiring authority looking for someone to travel, it may keep you from being interviewed.

    • Stories sell. Numbers, statistics, percentages get attention if you put in bold type. Increased profit by this 28%. Came under budget by 30%. If you were born and raised on chicken farm, note it on your résumé.

    • Fuzzy key words and phrases should be avoided. These include customer-oriented, excellent communications skills, and creative. These words lack meaning and do absolutely nothing to help you get an interview.

    • Use words that refer to titles- customer service, controller, manager, accountant,

    • Get the photos off your résumé. You are looking for a job, not a date.

    KH: Does “age” stop people over 50 from landing a job? - Read the answer and complete Forbes article

    Thursday, August 25, 2011

    Cold Call Your Way to a New Job

    There’s no question that the Internet has changed the way we search for jobs. Email, social media, job boards – a world of career opportunities are literally just a click away. But all this easy job seeking comes at a cost – whether you’re sending a email, letter of inquiry, or a submitting a resume – you’re just another faceless applicant among millions of job seekers.

    When we apply to jobs online, we lose a good portion of our personal marketing message. There’s only so much a great LinkedIn profile or Facebook page communicates about who we really are as a person. It’s not the same as actually talking to someone real-time. On the Internet, great applicants get overlooked and great talent gets lost in translation.

    So how do we stand out in such an impersonal system? This article advocates using an old piece of technology to get you in front of a human being – the tried and true telephone.
    After you’ve applied to some jobs online, it’s time to call some companies and hiring managers. You’ll be seen as more driven and proactive just by making the effort. However, picking up the phone and calling a stranger can be the hardest thing in the world. Compared to non-confrontational emails, social media messages, etc., selling yourself on the phone is a whole different ballgame. But those who make the extra effort reap the rewards. So how do you actually make the call? Read below for some tips:
    1. Research who to call: This is where your network and the Internet comes in handy. It wouldn’t make much sense to open up the phone book and blindly call the receptionist at all companies you’re looking at. You need the names of hiring managers and decision makers – and your network can help. You can do your detective work on a company’s website or any of the social media networks. Ask for referrals and probe around your industry for opportunities.

    2. Make a script: If you don’t feel comfortable with off-the-cuff conversation, make a cold call script just like salespeople do. This can range from a few scribbled talking points to a full on elevator pitch. If you can’t get through to anyone, leave a short voice-mail and move on. You never know who might call you back.

    Wednesday, August 24, 2011

    5 Reasons Why Recruiters Are Using Twitter for Recruitment

    By Careerealism

    1. Twitter is free; and with the cost of business sometimes being a hefty burden, even recruitment firms can’t resist the charms of a no-cost, useful online tool. For recruiters seeing a decline in assignments, free services such as Twitter can offer needed relief to a weighed-down operating budget.
    For job seekers: Twitter is free, even to Jane and Joe Job Seeker. If recruiters are using Twitter to attract ideal job candidates, it seems only fitting job seekers should put themselves in the position to be attracted.

    2. Twitter provides a substantial reach for recruiters, putting them in touch with prime job candidates that few other online services provide. Building hundreds of followers within a few short weeks is very doable, so Twitter can certainly put recruiters in touch with followers (job seekers) quickly as well.
    For job seekers: Twitter puts you within “tweet reach” of recruiters.

    3. Twitter offers a formal and informal platform for recruiters to open conversations. Recruiters strive for the best job candidates, which usually means “cherry picking” prime candidates away from competitors. Twitter certainly offers one more method of contact to pick.
    For job seekers: Make yourself accessible to recruiters by learning about their current and continued recruitment needs. Take an active interest in keeping up on recruiter posts, recommending colleagues or associates when the need arises [keep in mind not each job posted will be perfect for you, but might be perfect for someone in your network — don’t forget to feed your network!].

    Tips 4-5 and Complete Article

    Tuesday, August 23, 2011

    Ace Your Skype Job Interview: 14 Smart Tips

    By Amy Levin-Epstein

    Practice makes perfect. This dictum applies to learning to do anything well — whether it’s riding a bike, speaking a foreign language, or doing a Skype interview with confidence. Consultant Kerrie Hopkins, who works with clients on 5 continents, advises not only practicing but also recording your efforts to review. “People have no idea how they are being received on another’s computer screen,” says Hopkins.

    That’s not a great thing, since in a still shaky economy when companies that are able to hire are increasingly turning to online interviews to save time and money, being able to interview comfortably on Skype is an essential skill to have.

    So in addition to practicing, how else can job seekers prepare for an online interview? I asked dozens of executives, career consultants, and tech experts nationwide this question. Here are their best 14 tips. Got more? Please share them in the comments section below.

    1. Look Into The Camera
    “During Skype interviews, some people fixate on themselves on the computer screen. This gives the impression that the candidate is not making eye contact with the interviewer on the other end. When an interview starts, take a moment to make sure you look fine on the screen, then focus on looking into the camera.”–Davin Malasarn, Science Writer for the California NanoSystems Institute at the University of California, Los Angeles

    2. Get Rid of Distractions
    “Make sure that [you're] the only living object in view. Maybe you’re 27 and living with your parents, but the person interviewing you doesn’t need to know that. Let the people in your life know what’s happening, and insist they stay at the opposite side of the house/apartment. If you have kids, it would be helpful to have a babysitter come to make sure there is no crying during the Skype session. And pets should also be out of view.“–Rich DeMatteo, Co-Founder of Bad Rhino, a social media marketing firm, and Founder of Corn on the Job, a job search blog, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

    3. Put Your Hands Where They Can See Them
    “Make sure that the camera on your computer gives a good shot of your head and shoulders, as well as of your hands. Remember that a good portion of understanding comes from body language and other non-verbal cues, so you want to make sure that the upper half of your body is showing.”–John Heckers, MA, CPC, BCPC, “Heckers Development Group, LTD, 
Cherry Creek, Colorado

    4. Plug In Securely
    “Plug your computer into an ethernet port, and plug your headphones into the computer’s jack. You want direct ethernet access because it’s far more stable than wireless, and you want to have headphones in to avoid playback from the speakers.”–Fan Bi, Founder + Chief Shirt, Blank Label, Boston, Massachussetts

    Read Tips 5 - 14 and more:

    Monday, August 22, 2011

    10 Things to do After you Lose your Job.

  • Contact a Career coach. Have you met with one? Most will give you the first meeting at no cost or obligation and you can brainstorm. Even this one meeting might give you some great ideas. Before you sign on with one, make sure you have shopped around to find one you like.

  • Network in unlikely places. Examine who you know, and who knows the most people. Tell them your story and see what comes back to you. For me, it was always my hairdresser. Seriously. He or she knew so many people. Second to this is your financial planner. Seriously II. As a financial planner I am incredibly connected to generations of clients and their families with all sorts of skill levels. As a self employed person for almost 20 years, I can also give you insight into this life style.

  • Evaluate your financial planner. If you look in the mirror and see your financial planner, fire yourself, and reach out to the financial planning community in your area. Just like career coaches, most planners will meet with you initially to see how they can help you and potentially work together and there is no charge for this first meeting. Look for Certified Financial Planners here. They have passed a strenuous series of 6 exams followed by a 2 day 10 hour comprehensive exam with a 55% pass ratios. CFPs dedicate themselves to this regimen.

  • Sharpen your saw. This aspect is one of Stephen Covey’s 7 Habits of Highly Effective People. If it has been a while since you read these 7 Habits, take another look. These are amazing and simple truths. Find people and situations to make you a better prospect and potential employee the next time around. 

  • Join Toastmasters. I would have put this first, but then you may have quit reading. It has been said they many people would pick death over making a speech in public. Perhaps you can already think on your feet. If you have never given an improvised speech, ask someone you love to give you a topic to talk about for 5 minutes and have them time you. If it is something you know about, that will help. If not, then your speech may be more about your curiosity about the topic. For example: Talk for 5 minutes about a Day in the Life of a Firefighter. But I digress……my major in college was Communications and I love to give speeches. You don’t have to love to speak in public. But you must be able to speak extemporaneously in a job interview, and you can practice this in your own living room. 

  • Tips 6 - 10 and Complete Forbes Article.

  • Friday, August 19, 2011

    10 Hiring Red Flags to Avoid

    By Victoria Brienza

    In this economy, companies often are flooded with hundred of applications for a single opening. And so it’s no surprise that hiring managers try to find ways to easily weed through the pile of resumes to get to the most qualified candidates to interview. It’s easier for companies to dismiss candidates than to keep them in the running and complete the whole screening process with prospects who may not pan out.

    The trick to giving yourself the best shot at a job is to make a clear path for the hiring manager to see how you fit the job requirements and make sure that your square peg fits nicely in their square hole. The more you can help them easily recognize how you are the best person to meet their needs, the easier it is for them to offer you a job.

    To keep your resume from the bottom of the pile, check out these top 10 hiring red flags and learn how to stay on your path to employment.    

    1. Your Contact Information

    While you may have a cutesy e-mail handle, it may not be the best option to use for your resume. “E-mail addresses are more important than you think,” says Anna H.*, a human resources executive. “Don’t use your 'stage name' like” Remember that e-mail is typically the preferred method of contact and you don’t want the hiring manager to have the question raised again and again, "I wonder how they got that email name?"

    With the ability to sign up for a free e-mail account, there is no excuse to not have an e-mail that shows your professionalism (i.e. yourname @ It’s the little things that can make a big difference between a job and the unemployment line.

    Anna H. also recommends this following tidbit to job applicants, “No pictures on resumes please! It is an HR nightmare. And for that matter, leave your street address off your resume too, until we ask for it.”

    Make sure you use an e-mail account with a professional handle. You can sign-up for a free e-mail from G-Mail, AOL, Yahoo, Hotmail or others. Use this e-mail only for your job search.

    Also, make sure that any touch point (i.e. voicemail, text, etc...) a recruiter may use to connect with you is also professional and appropriate.

    *All names have been changed to protect the identity of our sources.

    2. Lengthy Gaps Between Jobs

    With such high unemployment these days, having a lengthy gap between jobs has become almost common. Although most of us will have a gap or two at some point in our career, it is still one of those markers that hiring managers make note of and will probably prompt them to probe you with some in-depth questioning.

    While there are gaps of time that can be easily explained, such as childbirth, education, self-employment, etc., it’s the unexplained lengthy gaps that raise a red flag for hiring managers. And in this competitive climate, it’s an easy way to weed your resume out without taking a good look.

    If you’ve been unemployed for six months or longer, you may want to briefly mention the reason for the gap in your cover letter and then expand your explanation in person, if necessary. Just keep your reasoning brief and positive in your cover letter. Remember, the best policy is to always be honest and open. Hiding it will be more problematic in the long run.

    Flags 3 - 10 and Complete Article