These days resume evaluators assume that their job is your objective. They are tired of looking at “Objective Statements” at the top of a resume, because at this stage the process is all about the employer’s objective to find great talent rather than the job hunter’s objective of finding a great job. A successful resume today replaces the “this is what I want” statement with a “this is the value that I offer” branding statement.
“Personal Branding” is today’s operative buzzword. Some job hunters are befuddled by what that is all about. In my USNews & World Report article I get to the heart of the statement that gets to the heart of who you are: your attributes, your value, and your uniqueness. Moreover, I provide examples of three different “knock your socks off” branding statements and how you can go about the task of projecting your value through your personal brand. Here’s the link to the full article: http://money.usnews.com/money/blogs/outside-voices-careers/2013/01/15/resumes-101-swap-a-stale-objective-for-a-fresh-branding-statement?goback=.gde_4051582_member_204643023
The New Year is at hand. With holiday parties over, now is the time to roll up your sleeves and execute your resolution to move your career to the next level.
As you sit down to compose or edit your resume, remember that its singular purpose is to address an employer’s first question: “Can this person do the work that is associated with this job, and do they have the right background to make a potentially strong fit?” Only if you pass this test can you begin to move along the other stages of the hiring process.
In my latest article published by USNews & World Report I show how you can use your intelligence, perspective and especially the power “How” to juice up your resume and jumpstart your job search for 2013. Here’s the link: http://money.usnews.com/money/blogs/outside-voices-careers/2013/01/02/3-ways-to-power-up-your-resume-for-the-new-year
This week I interviewed Susie Hall, the President of VitaminT – a very large recruiting agency that deals primarily with “creative types”. We spoke about how recruiters go about finding great candidates, what they look for, how they network, and how job seekers can get on their radar. I’ve shared the highlights of that discussion, along with several tips about things that a job hunter can utilize to create an effective personal brand and get hired faster. Note: her advice is valid for people with all kinds of backgrounds, interests and aspirations. You can see what she says by following this link to my USNews & World Report article for this week: http://money.usnews.com/money/blogs/outside-voices-careers/2012/12/26/how-to-be-found-and-prized-by-headhunters#comments.
Happy reading… happy hunting, and HAPPY NEW YEAR!
Headhunters, or recruiters, are all about finding top-tiered talent to fill permanent, full-time positions for their client companies. But in order to do what they do well, they are in a continuous networking mode. As a job hunter there are ways that you can enhance your own relationship with a recruiter by understanding their needs, because like anyone else they enjoy helping those who help them. In my latest article published by USNews & World Report, I show why it is important for you to share what you have been doing to get a job, open up about your red flag issues, five other ground rules you should follow to make that relationship work for your benefit. Here’s the link: http://money.usnews.com/money/blogs/outside-voices-careers/2012/10/02/7-ground-rules-for-dealing-with-recruiters
Despite continued high unemployment numbers, companies are hiring. Surprisingly, they are finding it difficult to find just the right people for positions that they need to fill. Recruiters, often called “headhunters,” who took a huge hit when the economy tanked in 2008, are reporting that they are now busier than they have been in several years.
Working with a recruiter can be a great benefit in your job hunt, but only if you understand their role in the hiring process. It’s time to clear the air and bust some of the myths. In my latest article in USNews & World Report I debunk 5 of the most prevalent myths about recruiters. Here’s the link: http://money.usnews.com/money/blogs/outside-voices-careers/2012/09/25/5-myths-about-working-with-recruiters
“My job search is stuck in the mud. I know I need to fix it, but I’m feeling overwhelmed and I’ve got no energy left. I’ve tried everything, and nothing seems to work.” Does this ring true for you?
The simple truth is: hunting for a job can be tiring, demoralizing, and frustrating. I often encounter people who have internalized their inability to find work as a sign of personal failure. Confidence and self-image suffer. As that happens, it becomes increasingly difficult to present the optimistic, energetic “can do” persona that employers seek.
We all hear that the longer you are out of work, the harder it is to get work. One of the reasons for this is that employers are looking for you, Mr. / Ms. Jobhunter not to be jaded, tired, and “down.” And, they fear that the longer you are out of work, the more likely it is you won’t have the vim and vigor they seek.
There are things that you can do to [R]energize your job hunt. This list is hardly exhaustive, but it is a good start:
- Remember that getting a job– is a job. Treat it with the same sense of professionalism that you would bring to any employment. Show up on time every day. And, at the end of the day don’t feel guilty about packing the work up, and transitioning to “personal” or “family” mode. As with any job, it is important to maintain a healthy work/life balance.
- Clarify your goals and envision success. Imagine yourself in the surroundings of your next job, and then embrace the job hunt as the necessary process to get you there. Make the effort to understand where you are most likely to add value to a potential employer. What are your strongest achievements, areas of expertise, and personal qualities? Think about not just what you would like to do, but about the kinds of jobs and corporate/work culture that are most akin to your background. These are all elements of defining your target. Once your goals are clearly defined, you can begin to move ahead in a purposeful and meaningful fashion.
- Recognize and confront your self-imposed roadblocks. Are you frozen in place by a fear of possible future failure? Many people have experienced so much rejection that they are afraid to have any more piled on. Such feelings are real, and they need to be acknowledged. Sometimes inaction can be a psychological defense mechanism. It is important, however, to understand that inaction is a certain road to the status quo. Try to move forward every day – even if you only do one or two small “baby step” things that can help to build up your self-confidence.
- Break out of your isolation, maintain “people contact”, and don’t be afraid to ask for help. Figure out who are the members of your support system– your family, friends, other jobhunters you meet at networking groups, members of your church or synagogue and so on. Talk to them on a regular basis. Tell them what you’ve been up to, what seems to be working, and what seems to be frustrating you. Make them part of your team. Ask for their feedback and advice. Help them to help you by creating a context of “us” instead of “me”. And of course: seek a good job hunting coach who can understand and relate to you, and provide both guidance and the occasional “kick in the pants” when it is called for.
- Balance your job hunting activities. You can’t be everywhere, all the time. Strive to create a balance over the course of a week or two in a cycle. If you think of your search for work as a job hunt, then imagine each tool or tactic as one arrow in your quiver. You need a variety of arrows including: informational interviewing; attending professional meetings and seminars; social networking utilizing LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter; writing your blog, etc., etc. However important online activity has become, remember that social networks are but the means to the end of building personal relationships. Nurture your relationships both in the real and virtual worlds.
- Stay focused and use your time wisely. People who work out of their homes often say that one of the biggest challenges they face is managing their time. It’s easy to be distracted by kids, pets, housework, TV, internet, computer games, and so much else! Organize your day and week in advance. Create an hourly schedule and stick to it by setting alarms on your computer calendar or wherever they will best be seen and heard.
- Practice, practice, and practice some more! Rehearse out loud your elevator speech and prepare answers to interview questions which you can anticipate. For example, don’t allow yourself to be flummoxed by opening queries like, “Tell me about yourself.” Did you know that Larry Bird, one of the greatest basketball players of all time, shot 1,000 baskets EVERY DAY! He was great because he understood the need for constant repetition and skill building.
- Maintain your mental & physical health. Eat healthy. Exercise at least 3 times each week. If it’s been a while since you exercised with any regularity, start slow and gradually build yourself back up. Get those endorphins flowing and you will look better, have more energy, and feel better about yourself.
I’m always interested to hear from readers. Tell me what stymies you, what energizes you, what works, and what doesn’t. I’d love to hear some success stories!
Abby Kohut of AbsolutelyAbby.com had some pointers for job-seekers on how to make the interview work to their best advantage. Here are three:
1. Know your accomplishments and be able to articulate them confidently. “Most people develop amnesia on an interview, and when we ask for examples of successes, they can’t think of any,” she said. “Preparing a list of them in advance and memorizing them will enable you to think on your feet and answer practically any question.”
2. Demonstrate your passion for the job and the company that you are interviewing for. “Recruiters” – and employers – “want to know that you are excited about this job, not just a job. You should research the company for at least an hour and then figure out why you truly want to work there.”
3. Ask intelligent questions at the end. “Typically, the question I am asked at the end of an interview when I ask for questions is, ‘What are the next steps in the process?’ If that is the only thing you can think of to ask after an hour-long conversation, it may be perceived as a lack of interest in the job” by the interviewer. Kohut advises job-seekers to prepare a list of 20 questions on topics like the corporate culture, the company’s mission, the work environment, and the managers and management style, that can be used on any interview to indicate genuine interest in and excitement about the job one is interviewing for.
Abby is dead on correct with all three points! I’ve made these same points over and over at the presentations I’ve been providing for years, and help my clients role play in advance of every interview to refine their jobhunter skills. If you know of a group or audience in New England looking for a speaker on any aspect of the job search from creating a strategy, effective social networking and interviewing, all the way to the final negotiations, don’t hesitate to call on me!
Job hunters: Share your comments and suggestions below! My readers and I would love to hear from you.
Arnie – Head Coach, Jobhuntercoach.com