Tuesday, September 20, 2022

Mark Cuban Says the Worst Career Advice is 'Follow Your Passion.' What Should You Do Instead?

By Jeff Haden

Ask just about any motivational speaker or career expert. Or ask Steve Jobs:  As the Apple co-founder once said, "You've got to find what you love. The only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven't found it yet, keep looking."  

Most people believe passion comes first.

But not Mark Cuban. When Adam Grant asked him if there was a "worst piece of career advice you've gotten," Cuban said:

Follow your passion? No.

Follow your effort. No one quits anything they're good at.

While passion can spark effort, the reverse is more often true. Effort, and the improvement that results, creates passion. Do something poorly? You probably dread doing it. Do something well? You enjoy it -- and the better you get, the more you like doing it.

Science agrees, especially where starting a business is concerned. According to a study published in Academy of Management Journal, the more effort entrepreneurs put into their startups or side hustles, the more enthusiastic they get about their businesses

As startup founders gain skill, expertise, and experience, their enthusiasm grows -- with or without early financial success. Effort, and resulting improvement, creates passion.

Not the other way around. 

'Follow Your Passion' Can Be Disastrous - Find out why and the rest of the Inc. article


Thursday, September 15, 2022

7 updates your résumé needs now

Without a refresh, your résumé can quickly look dated. Here are seven ways to give it a quick update.


Résumé-writing typically comes with a list of best practices. Tailor your résumé to the job. Focus on the impact you made instead of the tasks you performed. And, most of all, be sure it’s accurate and free of typos. A recent analysis by job search platform Adzuna found that meaning almost roughly two-thirds of résumés contained at least one mistake. More than 13% of the résumés analyzed contained five or more errors.

But, beyond that, there are a few more nuanced details that can make your résumé look modern—or dated, says career coach and résumé consultant Marjorie Sherlock. “The résumé has evolved as a marketing tool, driven by what the market is telling us,” she says. And much of what was expected even 10 years ago is “completely dead.”

The risk of submitting a résumé that looks a little behind the times is what it says about you: Perhaps you’re not up on trends or how industries evolve, Sherlock explains. So, if it’s been a few years since you’ve updated your professional calling card, give it a look with these tips in mind.


While applicant tracking systems have come a long way, it’s still a good idea to avoid heavy graphics or tables to present information in your résumé, Sherlock says. And use one space after a period rather than two. (Word processing programs automatically adjust spacing—typewriters didn’t—so, there’s no need for the extra space.)

** I have looked at a lot of resume that would have looked nice if they were printed out but the parsing function doesn't like all of the columns and graphics so it cuts down on your odds of being found through keyword searches.


Résumé consultant Donna Svei limits clients’ résumés to 700 to 800 words. “Very few recruiters and hiring managers want to read more than that,” she says.

Similarly, she advises avoiding large blocks of text, which are hard to read, especially on mobile devices. People start losing interest after about four lines, she says. “Technology shifted résumés from paper to screens, and job seekers who haven’t adapted to the change with shorter paragraphs that are easier to read on screens look dated,” she says.


Periodically, it’s a good idea to cull the information you include on your résumé to keep it more focused on today. Since 2007, the pandemic and Great Recession have changed so much about work and the way things get done. Unless the experience is “stunningly relevant” to your goals, consider dropping it in favor of more recent and relevant experience. Awards, speeches, and publications older than about four years may be past their expiration date, she adds.

Read the full Fast Company for all 7 updates article

Wednesday, June 29, 2022

Networking on Slack Is a New Way to Find a Job, but It Takes Work

By Lindsay Ellis

Networking forums on Slack have become fertile ground for finding new jobs fast. Getting into the right professional group and navigating its dynamics can take some effort.

A popular workplace communication tool, Slack is becoming a growing force in professional networking and recruiting. Many industry and professional groups have formed on the platform in recent years, allowing those in marketing, cybersecurity and other fields to exchange career advice and job leads. Members of these invite-only communities often connect each other with hiring managers at their companies, putting them on the fast track for openings. 

But job seekers first have to gain access. And some Slack networking groups can be like awkward parties, members say: A few people occasionally show up, and no one has much to say.

To make the most of these private forums in your job search, it is important to know how to find the people with connections to open the right career doors and how to navigate each group’s social norms, veteran Slack networkers say. Just as in traditional meet-and-greets, for instance, it’s wise to introduce yourself and show collegiality before asking for favors. 

As Alexis Scott looks to make a career transition, the 39-year-old says she is honing her Slack networking approach. She wrangled invitations to join several online communities for professional women. Some she discovered by finding Slack offshoots of other professional forums—such as Ladies Get Paid, a career-networking and professional development site for women.  

In each of the 10 groups she has joined, she has figured out how to quickly gauge how engaged members are and whether they are posting worthwhile job openings. She says she looks for groups where users respond to one another’s questions. “If someone posts, are people replying, or is it sitting in dead air?” she notes.  

If things seem quiet, Mrs. Scott says she won’t hang out there, aside from occasional check-ins.

Here are more tips she and other Slack networkers offer:

Find the right community

Once you find a Slack group of professional peers, getting in isn’t tough, many group members and founders say. But finding the right group can take legwork. Slack Technologies, which is owned by Salesforce.com Inc. , says it doesn’t know how many networking groups exist on its platform. 

“It does seem to be kind of an insider club,” says Jimmy Daly, who co-founded Superpath, a Slack group for content marketers. “For the most part, people let you in on the secret as they discover it.”

Mr. Daly, 36, recommends asking professional networking organizations about relevant Slack groups, and googling “Slack community” and your career field—for instance, “engineer.” Some of Superpath’s roughly 8,500 members discovered the group, he says, by coming across a tweet or blog post listing relevant Slack forums. Others did so by word-of-mouth.

Some more recently established Slack groups do direct outreach via social media. When the Cybersecurity Marketing Society set up on Slack in 2020, its founders sent LinkedIn messages to people in the field, urging them to join, says Gianna Whitver, one of the group’s creators. 

Not all Slack groups are equally useful
Read the full WSJ article for more tips and info




Wednesday, May 25, 2022

How To Choose The Right Next Job

George Bradt

In an earlier article I suggested a BRAVE approach to finding your next job. It gives you a framework for adding deliberate thinking to an emotional process and your ultimate choice. The crux of the issue is getting at the right weighting of the dimensions driving your choice – especially between your short-term ideal job criteria and long-term goals to optimize the growth potential of your next role. Ask:

  • Where to play to focus your job search on where you can be most successful next.
  • What matters most to you in terms of the balance of doing good for others, things you’re good at and doing good for yourself.
  • How you can win to sharpen your focus on what makes you differentially valuable to potential employers.
  • How to connect to guide your message and story.
  • How to understand and communicate the impact you can have on potential employers.


  1. List your likes and dislikes - your raw data pulled from past activities and jobs - about specifics, not generalities.
  2. Lay out your ideal job criteria.
  3. Identify your long-term goals.
  4. Create a broad range of options.
  5. Make choices by evaluating your options against your criteria and goals.

Job Search Steps

Prepare your positioning and messaging before contacting any prospective employers. 

Between your first contact and their offer, all you’re doing is selling. Everything you say and do, including every question you ask, should help potential employers understand and believe you have the right combination of strengths, motivation and fit to help them. You can’t turn down a job you haven’t been offered.

An offer or multiple offers switches you from selling mode to buying mode. Do your due diligence to understand potential organizational, role and personal risks. Rule out potential jobs with too much risk for you.

Read the full Forbes article to learn about

Job choice


Ideal job criteria versus long-term goals





Thursday, February 24, 2022

5 factors that will make you more promotable

By Jennifer Kraszewski

When I was seven years old, I decided that I wanted to raise chickens. For some, this might be a little odd. Even in my small Oklahoma town, a young girl managing chickens isn’t an everyday sight. But I was committed. Thankfully, my beloved grandad was all in and even encouraged me to consider starting a business selling eggs.

My time as a chicken manager was chaotic but lucrative (more on that later). Those days offered something else: opportunities to fail, learn, and experience deep joy from a job well done. The business world isn’t a chicken coop, but it’s had its fair share of chaos the last couple of years. As an employee, you have the desire to feel valued. Maybe you’re considering a career jump. Perhaps an opportunity that speaks to who you are, holistically, and what you can offer. And in return, you’re wanting more.

Within the unexpected is an opportunity to step up and stand out right where you are. As the vice president of human resources at a high-growth S&P 500 company, I’ve had the privilege of seeing team members soar to new heights in their careers. At Paycom, we move quickly. In my role, I expect and notice excellence. Promoting from within is competitive advantage for successful businesses. It fosters institutional knowledge and loyalty. Unfortunately, the flip side of the equation can be costly. A workplace study from Gallup reveals the cost of replacing an employee is as much as 200% of the original worker’s salary.

For those looking to position themselves for a promotion, below are some beneficial traits to consider.

1) Be adaptable

Adaptability’s value is only going up. Flexibility and the ability to manage change are imperative now more than ever. Adaptability fatigue is behind us. Let’s settle in to our new normal and take a breath. As a little girl, my grandad inspired me to create my own egg company. I was seven years old, and in my mind, anything was possible. I began selling eggs around the neighborhood and quickly found out that there were a lot of neighbors and a lot of eggs, but only one me. Instead of quitting, I did what any tenacious girl would do: I found a few more baskets and asked my friends to help. When managers look to promote, they’re not looking for employees who restate the problems. Believe me, we know the problems. Leaders offer solutions. Leaders find the baskets and make it happen.

2) Take initiative

In my career and life, I’ve observed the importance of pitching in before someone asks you. I’ve carried that with me and promoted team members who have the tenacity to show they want more responsibility and can handle it once given. Taking advantage of professional development opportunities demonstrates the drive to learn and perfect your skills. Extra points if your company provides professional development, leadership trainings and growth opportunities, through HR technology accessible 24/7. This is direct access to training and upskilling so you’re able to succeed where you are and develop skills for tomorrow. You should be in control of your data and track your goals through tech software.

When I’m looking to promote someone, employees thinking steps ahead and prioritizing their own development sets my mind at ease and shows me they are strategic thinkers.

Read all 5 factors and the complete Fast Company article



Wednesday, February 23, 2022

5 Ways To Improve Your CV | Resume

Andrew Fennell

If your job search isn’t going as planned, and you’re seeing more rejections than you had hoped for, your CV is probably the main culprit.

A CV that doesn’t reflect your strengths adequately to recruiters and employers is never going to help you reach your lofty careers goals.

So, if you’re currently being held back from your next big career move, here are five fool-proof ways you can give your CV an upgrade and start getting more responses in the job market.

4) Upskill

One way to instantly boost your employability and make your CV look great is to learn some new skills. For example, you might wish to learn how to use new tools or software, remote working practices, or even just upgrade your knowledge in your current field.

There are multiple ways you can do gain skills nowadays; you could take an online course or digital workshop, listen to podcasts or watch tutorials. Alternatively, you could join an evening class or ask someone in your current workplace to teach you.

However you choose to go about it, it’s a good idea to work out your objectives first as this will help you choose the right type of course or training for your career. Let’s say you have an ideal new job in mind; you can take a look over similar job descriptions to find out what sought-after skills or know-how you’re missing. This will help to guide you in your pursuit of knowledge and new skill sets.

5) Strip out irrelevant details

When you’ve had a long or established career, you might have years of experience and multiple qualifications behind you, but over time these can become less relevant and simply take up precious space.

In fact, when it comes to your CV, the information you choose to leave out can be just as important as the information you choose to include.

The best approach to take is to examine the job description and see what the employer is after, then omit any information that is not relevant or required for the role.

For example, in your employment history, you can leave out any roles that aren’t relevant to the industry or position you’re applying for and cut down any older roles to just one-line summaries.

By stripping out any outdated or irrelevant information, you make it much easier for the recruiter to find the relevant information that proves you’re a good fit for the role.

So, if you are looking for a new position this year, keep this advice in mind when writing your CV. Even just one of our five tips could be enough to instantly boost your CV and help you secure an interview.

See tips 1-3 and the complete Forbes article



Thursday, February 17, 2022

What The Great Reshuffle Means For Your Job Search - 7 Tips

Tammy Homegardner

Millions of workers have resigned from their jobs over the past year, deciding that they need to make a change. Most are searching for new positions that align with their needs and values. In contrast, others have decided to switch careers entirely. No matter the reason behind your job hunt, I have some good (and bad) news for you.

The good news is that companies are offering employees more than ever before to attract, acquire and retain top talent. This is excellent from a negotiation standpoint as higher salaries, flexible schedules and increased perks and benefits are all on the table. However, there are countless candidates to choose from. So, even though the opportunities posted seem endless, competition for these positions is fierce. If you are looking to change your career, you can still land your dream position. It just requires some strategy on your part.
1) Do not search blindly.

When making a career change, your search must target one or two different positions — tops. Trust me when I say that you will get nowhere if you search for many different roles across numerous industries. Your LinkedIn profile and resume will not be targeted the way they should be, and you will be less focused when presenting yourself for any role. If you are unsure what you want to do moving forward, you need to take some time to assess.

4)  List your negotiables and non-negotiables. Group what you want from your next role into “non-negotiable” and “negotiable” categories. For example, a non-negotiable may be a flexible work schedule or working within the environmental industry. A negotiable may be the salary range or specific responsibilities associated with the role.

7) Do not underestimate the power of networking.

Because the job market is saturated with candidates, many positions are filled through referrals. It is vital to strengthen your online and in-person network by optimizing your LinkedIn profile, attending networking events and speaking with those you know. This is another reason why being targeted with your job search is integral to your success.

To network effectively, consider having a short pitch that you can use when meeting people and discussing your professional goal. Building on the example listed above:

I have been interested in transitioning into a sales position for quite some time. I have more than 10 years of experience in marketing — creating strategic campaigns that engage customers and achieve goals. I believe my background within marketing transfers seamlessly into a business development role, and I am excited about a new opportunity.

See all 7 tips and the complete Forbes article


Thursday, February 10, 2022

24 Phone interview tips: How to land a second interview

Written by  

How should you prepare for a phone interview? What are the most common phone interview questions? And how can you stand out during a phone interview? Our phone interview tips walk you through the steps to take before, during, and after a phone interview to help you move on to the next stage of the interview process.

Why do companies have phone interviews?

Companies often use phone interviews to screen applicants and decide which candidates to meet in person. Phone interviews save the time and expense of arranging in-person interviews as the first step in a job search. 

During a phone interview, companies want to learn about the applicants' experience, qualifications, and if he/she is a good fit for the position. Candidates who make a strong impression land a second interview.

1) What to expect during a phone interview?

Most companies use phone interviews to screen applicants in the early stages of the interview process. As a result, candidates should prepare to answer questions about their work history and all the duties they have performed in their previous jobs. Interviewers might also ask about the candidate's career goals and knowledge of the company. 

Salary might come up during a phone interview, particularly when speaking with a recruiter. The interviewer may ask about salary expectations or provide the salary range for the role. Phone interviews might last as little as 15 minutes to as long as an hour.

Common phone interview questions

  • "Tell me about yourself."
  • "What makes you a good fit for this role?"
  • "What interests you about this role?"
  • "What do you know about our company?"
  • "What are some of your strengths?"
  • "What are some of your weaknesses?"
  • "Why do you want to work for our company?"
  • "Why are you looking for a new job?"
  • "What are your salary expectations?"
  • "What type of work environment do you prefer?"
  • "What type of management style do you prefer?"
  • "How would you describe your management style?"
  • "Do you have any questions for us?"

2) Start prepping as early as possible

It's important to start preparing for a phone interview as early as possible. When scheduling the interview, consider blocking off time to prepare. Use that time to learn more about the company, practice your answers to common phone interview questions, and prepare questions for the interviewer.

3) Get the details down

You've scheduled a phone interview for 1:00 p.m. on Wednesday. But what time zone? Is it a true phone interview or a video call? Who should place the call, you or the interviewer? Make sure you know the details or reach out to the company for clarification. While getting the details down, make sure they have both your phone number and email. If the call is on Zoom, make sure you have the link and test it 10 minutes before your call.

4) Research the company

During the phone interview, you'll want to demonstrate your enthusiasm for the position. Researching the company — and determining why you want to work for them — will go a long way toward landing a second interview. Learn about the company, its values, and its goals. Reach out to anyone in your network who's worked for the company to get an insider perspective.

5) Make an accomplishments cheat sheet

The interviewer will want to know why they should hire you. Make a cheat sheet of your experiences, skills, and accomplishments. Read the job posting again and write down specific qualifications that the employer is looking for. Make sure you talk about these qualifications in your interview. Use the cheat sheet during the interview when they ask you to provide specific examples of your accomplishments. 

6) Practice answering common questions

Many phone interviews start with an open-ended question like "tell me about yourself." Practice a concise, focused answer to that question and other common questions. Practice speaking about your strengths and your professional accomplishments. Planning these answers will help you relax and sound confident during the interview.

7) Plan out your salary answer

Salary expectations might come up during a phone interview. Research the salary range for the role in your area to avoid undervaluing yourself. In fact, you might want to ask about the salary range to make sure the company's pay matches what you're looking for. Plan out how to answer the salary question without selling yourself short. For example, you can avoid saying an exact number but give a range. Or, you can ask the interviewer what the company's salary range is and base your answer off of their range.

8) Prep three questions for the interviewer

Almost every interview ends with, "do you have any questions for me?" Use your prep time to come up with three questions for the interviewer. Asking questions shows your interest in the role and demonstrates that you've done your research. You can ask about the day-to-day responsibilities, the company culture, or the metrics for success in the role.

Read all 20+ tips and the complete ZDnet article


Wednesday, January 26, 2022

Hiring Experts Say These Are The 3 Most Revealing Interview Questions They Ask

Monica Torres 

Prepping for a job interview means knowing how to handle curveball questions about your past jobs, boss and projects. Impressing an interviewer means not just having great career stories to tell, but also thinking two steps ahead to the kind of questions hiring managers like to ask.

So here’s a peek behind the curtain: We talked with recruiters and human resources experts about the go-to interview questions they ask when they want to know how a candidate really thinks. Take notes, job seekers! 

3. “Walk me through a project that you’re most proud of.”

Gabrielle Woody, a university recruiter for the financial software company Intuit, said her go-to question is asking people to share their proudest project or accomplishment.

“It’s a really great question. Candidates get really nervous, but if they’re talking about something they truly love, they’re more comfortable. They’ve already done the project. It’s not a hypothetical,” Woody said. “It just allows us to evaluate a lot of their impact ... and it addresses a lot of the key skills and competencies.“

Woody said this question can lead to follow-ups such as how they accomplished the project under constraints, what metrics they used, and how they measured success or failure.

Woody recommends preparing a story around two to three projects you are proud of that are related to the role you are applying for.

She said a great answer happens “if it’s clear to me that they are passionate about what they do and the project involves skills they would be using in their future role,” while a bad answer is “just very vague, or you can tell they’re just sharing what their team did and they might not have had many contributions to it.”

Here’s how to craft an answer to these type of questions:

If you are stumped on how to answer an interview question that asks for a story, Woody recommended the STAR method. She said this checklist helps you stay on track and be very clear about the situation at hand and what your individual deliverables were.

With STAR, you tell an interview story with these four parts:
1. Situation: Which job was this? When was this? You set the scene and describe the context within which you performed a job or faced a project at work.
2. Task: You remember to highlight which specific responsibilities you had in the situation.
3. Action: Share what actions you took and showcase how your contribution made an impact.
4. Results: You share why your actions mattered to the team or business. This can be said with data or by detailing steps you took to improve.

“I literally have STAR written down as candidates are answering interviewing questions, and that helps me probe more if they’re missing one of these areas,” Woody said. 

See questions 1 & 2 plus the complete HuffPost article



Wednesday, January 19, 2022

3 better questions to ask in your next job interview

By Patrick Mullane

Job interviews are stressful events. Even if the interviewer tries to put you at ease, you know you’re being evaluated. But many who throw themselves into prospecting for a new job forget it’s a two-way street: Not only is the company evaluating you, but you’re also evaluating the company. At some point in the discussion, they’ll turn the floor over to you and ask, “Do you have any questions for me?”

In my 30-year career, I’ve learned this is a critical moment that many interviewees flub. Candidates forget that when they’re given control of the discussion, it’s an opportunity to do two very important things. First, it’s a chance to learn something genuinely useful about the firm you might be joining. Second, you get to show that you’re thoughtful and conscientious. Both are hugely important as you look to make a change. Don’t waste the opportunity.

Here are three questions candidates typically ask, and their better alternatives—to help you achieve the two-pronged goal of impressing and learning in a job interview.

Common Question #1: “Can you tell me about the culture here?”

Better Question: “Can you think of a time when the company’s culture made you excited to work here or helped you during a challenging time?” 

It’s easy for an interviewer to answer the first question with platitudes you’d expect from somebody representing their company. You can already guess what the answers will be. “It’s collaborative.” “We like to work hard and have fun.” “It’s inclusive and supportive.”

The second version, on the other hand, gets to the intersection of employee and culture. Since that’s the intersection you’ll live in if you get the job, it’s important to understand how you’ll fit with that culture. Imagine how much more you’d learn if you asked the better question and got an answer like this: “I had an unexpected death in the family and my peers proactively contacted me, not just to offer condolences, but to assure me they’d cover for me while I was out.” Wouldn’t that answer help you instantly understand what the culture is like? 

See Better Questions 2,3, and the complete FastCompany article