Friday, September 25, 2009

4 Reasons Your Job Search Isn’t Yielding Results - Part 1 of 4

Are you tired of your job search? Tired of hearing from hiring managers “you don’t have enough experience” – or not hearing from hiring managers at all? I understand your frustration and want to help, so I've created a 4 part series that will share the "Top 4 Reasons Your Job Search Isn't Yielding Results" and release one tip per week - starting this week!

Reason #1: E-mailing Your Resume – Only: Did you know that on average, a hiring manager’s e-mail inbox may receive over 200 resumes for each posted job position?

I am not saying that you shouldn’t e-mail your resume. What I AM saying is that e-mailing your resume isn’t enough. E-mailing your resume is easy to do, so easy that thousands of candidates are doing exactly the same thing.

Try This Approach Instead: Go ahead and apply to that position posted online, just make sure to send your resume via fax, hand delivery, and good ole’ fashioned snail mail when you can.

Thank you for taking time to read this article. Stay Tuned Next Week For Tip #2! Feel free to share your comments and tips below!

Friday, September 18, 2009

You Are What You Say You Are

There is a quote by the famous T. Harv Eker that states "You will live into your story.” Basically, whatever you tell yourself, you will become. This can be both good and bad. Good, in the fact this can propel you to become better as a person and as a professional. Bad, in the fact you can undermine and sabotage your success without anyone playing an active role.

Your mind determines the story and your success at your job search. Tell yourself everyday WHY you are great. Review old documents that complement your ability to write on certain subjects. Take time to pat yourself on the back for those complements and commit these accomplishments to memory. Don’t be shy. Put these on your resume as well. These high grads on various class projects are EXACTLY what hiring managers are looking for. Especially if you haven’t had any prior experience in the job you are applying for!!!

Now that you are visualizing yourself as the wonderful person that you truly are, try these approaches to make yourself stand out:

Use Post-It Notes: Send your resume via mail with a Post-It Note attached with a approving phrase like “Good Candidate” or “Quick Study”

Send Candy: Send your resume via mail with a small bag of peppermints attached to your cover letter. The top of the cover letter can state “Life is sweeter with (insert your name) as your insert job title”.

Network: There are 6 degrees of separation between who you need to know and who needs to know you. Join your local professional association as a member and start meeting people in your profession. Ask questions and let them know what you are looking for and how you can help an employer. Keep doing this. You will get results.

You can make your life and your career the story that you want. Just take the first step to living your story – You are what you say you are!!!

Friday, September 11, 2009

Whine or Cheese

Can you believe it? In less than 4 months, this year will end and a new one will begin!

Don't wait until next year to make new year's resolutions. If you are unhappy with the way this year has been progressing in regard to your job search, then now is the time to swing your career into gear. No excuses and no regrets should be your sentiments by the time you reach January 2010 (Did I mention it will be here in less than 4 months?).

Every experience you have had this year, be it bad or good, has taught you a lesson. If you do not learn from it, you will fall into one of the two categories – Whine or Cheese.

You remember the one; it is the person in your office that blames everyone for the current problem or situation at hand. They whine about the gossip in the office, they whine about the time everyone comes in to work, and they whine about the amount of money so and so makes. Sound familiar? Well, hopefully not too familiar.....

If this sounds like you, or upon further reflection you realize is sounds more like you than you care to admit then make a vow to change right now. Stop saying “it’s not fair” and stop listening to people that say “it’s not fair”. Start putting your energies into rectifying the situation at hand. You will find if you put all of your effort into correcting the situation and avoiding those that whine about situations then you will begin to see it improve.

Nathan from the book Who Moved My Cheese stated, “Have you noticed we don’t want to change when things change?” The book is a story about change and how 4 characters in a book handle the change of the “cheese” or goal always moving around. A small book, one could read it in 20 min while standing in the bookstore.

The important truth that pervades this book is that we must anticipate and accept change. It will come whether you like it or not. Your career will change. Your job and the daily duties in it will change. Every job applied to in your job search requires a resume that has been changed to reflect the job you are applying to. You will change your mannerisms in each interview. Each interaction with your current manger will change based on what is going on that day. Accept and embrace this fact. Truly successful people understand that change brings challenges, but it also brings learning and opportunity.

Today, you stand at the edge of opportunity and challenge. Make a choice - whine or cheese anyone?

Friday, September 4, 2009

How To Use Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook and Social Media To Help You Find A Job

Almost a year ago I joined with one question in mind – Can Twitter help our Kaplan University students find a job?

As I learned more about, the next question became – Are lawyers and legal professionals on Twitter?

As time wore on, the next question became – Are hiring managers on Twitter? What about LinkedIn?

After almost a year of being on (and reading MANY books on the topic) and exploring other “Social Media” sites such as LinkedIn and Facebook, I can happily answer YES to all 3 questions.

When I First Started Using Twitter…..
With unemployment approaching staggering highs, I wanted to find a way to share job search tips that people could use quickly and easily and find legal professionals and hiring managers for our Kaplan University students. For a short time, I felt as if I were "Tweeting" in the dark (posts to are called "Tweets"), looking for lawyers that shared an interest in social media sites for the purpose of networking and sharing their insights into the legal field seemed daunting. How do I find them? How does this Twitter thing work? How can we converse with only 140 characters (the key to sharing ideas using Twitter)? But, I kept going in dogged determination always asking "Do Lawyers Tweet?"

Determination Pays Off With Twitter….
My determination paid off! Lawyers, legal professionals, and hiring managers DO “Tweet” and they are networking, talking, and sharing. These "tweets" are vibrant, informative, and interesting as people share insight into their worlds (and available jobs). To make your profile stand out
-Make Sure You Project a Professional Image
-Post Relevant Information Related To Your Field To Establish Your Reputation
You can also locate people with like interests on Twitter by using the “search” feature, hashtags feature (the “#” symbol), and looking at other people’s profiles to see which people they are “following”.

After experiencing success with Twitter, I decided to try to locate job opportunities and network on LinkedIn by conducting a “LinkedIn Experiment” over several months. The key “take-aways” include:
-Join Groups
-Utilize the Job Boards
-Create a Marketable Profile/Brand Yourself
-Utilize the Recommendation Feature

For More Details On Using Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook and Social Media:
What to learn how to use social media? Want to learn more about how to find a job using Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook and Social Media?
CLICK HERE or copy and paste this link – in your web browser. It will open a live webinar presentation that I conducted with our Kaplan University students that provides step by step instructions on how to use these sites and tie everything together with an action plan at the end of the presentation.

Note: I am also happy to announce that this article has also been published in Kaplan University's newsletter for our students.