Archive for February, 2015

5 Tips on How to Use Job Fairs to YOUR Optimum Advantage

February 27, 2015

Job FairJob Fairs are the perfect practice lab for you to execute your full range of job search strategies – you can find them on Google, by putting in the city where you live and then “job fairs.” Think of it as “speed dating” between you and prospective employers. With that being said, I offer you the following 5-step approach in order to reap results from your participation in job fairs, while you are honing your job search practices and interviewing skills.

#1)  Select Companies to Target

Since the Internet makes it easy to research prospective employers easily and efficiently, do the following:

  • Obtain a list of participating companies for the event you will be attending
  • Go to the website of each company that interests you – use a search engine to find recent relevant articles & news about the companies
  • Review the “employment” section of each company to see listings of currently advertised jobs; print any advertised positions of interest; and start a file for each company being researched
  • List the top 5 companies that are of most interest to you, and then the “second tier” – the next 5 companies

#2)  Craft a Job-Fair-Friendly Resume

Make sure your resume is very reader-friendly. Since the employers look at hundreds of resumes each day, you want to make sure yours really stands out – it needs to be informative and easy to read. You might even want to craft a one-page resume – that illustrates your value as it meets their needs

#3)  Practice Your 60-Second Commercial

Develop a brief statement that conveys the key value propositions you bring a new employer. Focus on three skill sets you have that you know the employer would want, and show how you have used them in your previous positions – these should be included on your resume, so you can point them out.

While you’re talking with the employers, make sure you are exhibiting positive body language, energy and enthusiasm. Be ready to answer questions based on the resume, succinctly making core points that you can back up with short stories about illustrative on-the-job accomplishments.

#4) Interacting with the “Top 5”

If you are nervous at the Job Fair, go to a “second tier” company first to practice your interviewing skills before hitting the companies that are most important to you. This way you have a chance to gather your thoughts and get more comfortable with the interview process. Focus each of your conversations on aligning your qualifications with the employers needs, and trying to find out as much as you can about the company.

Be sure to thank the interviewer at the end of the conversation, and reiterate your interest in the company. Most importantly, ask the interviewer about next steps in continuing the dialogue. Take specific actions cited by the interviewer as part of your follow-up activities. It’s important to take written notes immediately after each conversation, while your memory is fresh.

#5) Follow-Up, Follow-UP, Follow-Up

Sort through all your notes, brochures and business cards collected at the Job Fair and put them in files. Decide the top 5 companies you want to pursue after meeting with the various company representatives. Send a follow-up “thank you” correspondence as soon as possible following the fair. Also, set up a system for tracking contacts that have been initiated and schedule future, consistent follow-up.

Remember, while job fairs are only one component of an effective job search campaign, they provide excellent opportunities to:

1) initiate contact with multiple prospective employers,

2) identify companies that represent a mutual match, and

3) gain substantial interviewing practice – all of this adds up to “real world” practice for you.

***I want to make sure you have every opportunity to get calls for the jobs you want – in order to do this, you need to start with a stellar resume. I know what it takes to get results. Just email your resume to me at careerist@aol.com and put “Resume Critique” in the subject line. I will then give you a complimentary resume critique. I look forward to hearing from you.***

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Uniqueness, Value & Celebrations – All Important In Your Career!

February 17, 2015

SeashellsThis week, I spent an afternoon finding seashells on the beach of Sanibel Island with my husband. It was interesting seeing how many shells we could find in all shapes and sizes – each one unique in its own way. After searching for “just the right” shells, we had a sizeable bag to bring home.

Each one of us is unique, in our own way, just like the shells. I hope you will take the time to discover your own uniqueness – both in your personal life and in your career. Your uniqueness contributes to the value you provide others. Become aware of what it is, and come to recognize it as your special gift to offer the world.

In addition, within this past week, my family has celebrated three birthdays – my grandson’s, my son’s and mine. I always enjoy birthday celebrations because it brings our family closer together. It is also a time when we can step back and remember our accomplishments, or appreciate something for what it is. I like to reflect on my life as it is now and decide what I want my next steps to be.

My wish is that each of you will take time to celebrate something special over the next couple of weeks. See how great it feels to set aside a special time to celebrate – with just one person, or a whole group. With all the negative focus in the world these days, let’s take time to concentrate on something, or someone special and just enjoy being with them.

***In order to discover your value and uniqueness in your career, I want to make sure you have every opportunity to get calls for the jobs you want – in order to do this, you need to start with a stellar resume. I know what it takes to get results. Just email your resume to me at careerist@aol.com and put “Resume Critique” in the subject line. I will then give you a complimentary resume critique.***

 

I can help you clarify the direction you want to take, give you a step-by-step process to get there, and support you each step of the way. Let me help you reach your career goals for 2015!

10 Secrets to Finding a Job – Despite a Challenging Job Market

February 11, 2015

Every time we turn on the news, we seem to get discouraging news about whether the job market is up or down. We are now in one of the busiest hiring seasons of the year, and there are positions to be found, if you take the right steps and remain persistent. Here are 10 ways you can stay positive and greatly increase your chances for great results. When you take action toward something you want, you remain more positive and feel more in control of the situation.

Apply Now1) Strive to be the best in your profession – Demonstrate at every opportunity how you can add value to an organization. Show what distinguishes you from your competition. This applies whether you are currently looking for a job, or whether you already have one.
2) Brand yourself – How are you unique? What are your strengths? Who is your target audience? Do you have a personal brand statement? If you’re not sure about the answers to these questions, take the time to reflect on them so you know just what VALUE you offer a new employer, or your current employer.
3) Network constantly and consistently – Join Internet networking groups such as LinkedIn and FaceBook. Also, join local and national professional organizations, such as your local Chamber of Commerce, or the Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE), to name a few.
4) Develop a relationship with a recruiter – especially one that works in your field. Being in their database isn’t enough, you want to be the one that comes to mind when they have a position for which you’d qualify.
5) Think about freelancing – Become more entrepreneurial, whether you work for yourself or someone else. Visit sologig.com. This is a site that hosts jobs just for freelancers and contractors.
6) If you are out of work, join a support group – The Career Conquerors Job Club or the Job Hunters Success Coaching Club – either one is a terrific place to start. Each week people support one other and provide leads and advice to others in the group.
7) Embrace change – Keep your job skills up to date. Create a personal website, or at least a great profile (ask about the 60 Second Commercial) on websites such as LinkedIn and FaceBook. Take a class.
8) Prepare for an evolving job market – Look for trends in the job market where there is increased hiring. Growth industries include health care, education, and green living, to name a few.
9) Your resume is what gets you interviews – Make sure it shows the type of position you want, how you have the skill set for that type of position, and how you have used your skills to make a difference in the various jobs you have held. It must show VALUE, and it must look great, so an employer will pick up the phone and call you.
10) Make sure your credentials and skill set matches the employers job requirements – Pay attention to the employer’s requirements or job posting – you should match about 75 – 80% of what they want.

***I want to make sure you have every opportunity to get calls for the jobs you want – in order to do this, you need to start with a stellar resume, an effective LinkedIn Profile and a system to navigate the Hidden Job Market. I know what it takes to get results. Just email your resume to me at careerist@aol.com and put “Resume Critique” in the subject line. I will then give you a complimentary resume critique, let you know what you can do to improve your LinkedIn Profile. Start the New Year on a positive note – I look forward to hearing from you.***

I can help you clarify the direction you want to take, give you a step-by-step process to get there, and support you each step of the way. Let me help you reach your career goals for 2015!

Actions to take in 2015 if your Job is Dissatisfying or you’re “In-Between”

February 5, 2015

Get the jobDid you know the busiest hiring season of the year is here? Now through March – employers fill more positions than during the other months. This means that if you are thinking about changing jobs, or have already been searching for work, NOW is the time to “rev up your efforts.”

The three actions to take immediately are:

1) Make sure your resume is a “10” before sending it out

Your resume MUST be superior. Companies often get dozens of resumes for every opening, and they look for any excuse to hit DELETE to screen you out of the competition. So, with your competition as strong as it is, and with the economy still sluggish, it is more important than ever that your resume shows your unique value and is technically perfect in order to survive the scrutiny of the reader. You have only 10 to 20 seconds to capture the reader’s interest – make it count!

How does your resume measure up?
• Is it concise, yet shows optimum value?
• Is your resume branded so your uniqueness stands out?
• Do you have a lot more accomplishments listed, than you do responsibilities? Accomplishments get interviews, tasks & duties don’t.

Your resume must convey what makes YOU unique. It must showcase your credentials and expertise, so that the reader can see why you are the best candidate for the job. It must have strong content and a good visual presentation. How does your resume stack up? Is it a “10” or could it use help?

2) Have a powerful LinkedIn presence

Creating an effective LinkedIn Profile is essential these days when it comes to finding new employment. It is the mail source employers and other professionals use to find out about you and what you have to offer in your field. Not only can people find you, but you can find others to network with, since networking is the #1 way to get a job! You will not be successful in your job search unless you network – period.

LinkedIn is important because it’s your professional portrait to the world; it helps build your network; it’s a way to get your message out to thousands of people for free; it attracts targeted people and it’s a way for you to help others.

3) Use the “Hidden Job Market”

Applying to Job Boards is a waste of time. Jobs in the hidden market are much better than the jobs listed in the public market. While the job market is not as robust as it could be, it’s not as bad as reported. That’s why it’s important for job-seekers to play more of the hiring game in the hidden job market.

Your career is very important to you. You’ve spent a lot of time, money and energy developing your skills and receiving an education, so it’s worth knowing how to achieve the best results to get thru a job transition quickly.

***I want to make sure you have every opportunity to get calls for the jobs you want – in order to do this, you need to start with a stellar resume, an effective LinkedIn Profile and a system to navigate the Hidden Job Market. I know what it takes to get results. Just email your resume to me at careerist@aol.com and put “Resume Critique” in the subject line. I will then give you a complimentary resume critique, let you know what you can do to improve your LinkedIn Profile. Start the New Year on a positive note – I look forward to hearing from you.***

I can help you clarify the direction you want to take, give you a step-by-step process to get there, and support you each step of the way. Let me help you reach your career goals for 2015!