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Best apps for senior job seekers

The slump in the economy has led to all kinds of unanticipated side effects. But one that nearly everyone could have predicted was the growth in early retirement by companies seeking to slash the payroll. This left many skilled seniors jobless and seeking work. If you find yourself in this group, with plenty to offer the right employer but few opportunities to get a foot in the door, here are just a few mobile applications that could help you make your case that you’re still relevant in today’s job market.

  1. LinkedIn. Over the course of a career you have likely developed an extensive network of peers and colleagues. Now is the time to make the most of such connections. After setting up an account on the website and linking with other professionals, you can download the complementary app for free and use the many tools to stay connected, make new acquaintances, view jobs, and follow groups and industry news. You can’t do everything with the app that you can with the web version, but it’s still a great way to keep tabs on your account on the go.
  2. Resume Designer. This handy app will set you back $2.99, but the user-friendly interface makes it worth the cost. All you have to do is select a template (or start from scratch), enter your information, fine tune the formatting, and start sending your resume out to prospective employers. It doesn’t get much easier for the professional looking to update a resume and get back to work.
  3. JobAware. Most people who are looking for jobs these days start with websites like Monster, Career Builder, or even Craigslist. But there are a couple of reasons why a seasoned job seeker such as yourself might want to steer clear of the apps associated with these sites. For one thing, they’re not highly rated by users. With problems like crashes each time you try to submit an application, you really don’t want to waste your time. Craigslist appears to be the most functional of the bunch, but do you really want to answer a cattle call job forum populated by positions that you’re likely overqualified for? JobAware, on the other hand, provides you not only with job listings, but lets you search by job type (full-time, contract, etc.), compare salaries, track applications, interviews, and overall progress, and even access information pertaining to creating a resume and preparing for an interview.
  4. KaiCards. It seems that the days of handshakes and card cases are long gone as one industry after another goes paperless and mobile. And despite the fact that there are several apps meant to replace the need for physical business cards, none truly deliver. KaiCards, however, comes the closest. Several design options will help you to create a workable digital calling card that you can share via Facebook, Twitter, and Tubmlr. And with in-app purchases you can either generate a PDF to email or print, or else send cards directly to your AirPrint device for automatic printing.
  5. Interview Prep Questions. Most people prepare for all kinds of things in life, from weekly dinner plans to public speeches to potential damage to mobile devices (where case mate iPhone 5 protectors come in handy). But for some reason, those who have been working for a while may feel that they don’t need to prepare for interviews. However, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure, so it behooves you to go into an interview having practiced answers to a few common questions. This free app can help by providing questions, along with tips for answering effectively. And you can save those that you need to practice, allowing you to ace every interview.

 

How to Think Like a Headhunter!

Want to get an interview? Then begin to think like a Headhunter or Recruiter! Ask yourself specifically what is the position and exactly who are they looking for to fill it? What qualities do they appreciate in a candidate? Is company mission oriented “all hands on deck until the job is done” culture? Perform enough research to know where your skills, experiences, and values learned will be most readily identified as being “positive”, and then give a brief career history highlighting those areas into your resume that bring on an “Aha!” from the reader. You will find that, more often than not, it will cause the recruiter to pick up the phone and call you in for an interview!

 

As a Headhunter or Recruiter what keywords would you enter if you wanted to find the most qualified candidate for the job? Recruiters expect to find the right person by identifying the resume with the most keywords used in their initial job announcement/advertisement. Companies advertising online place relevant and desired “key words” into their resume screening program – Applicant Tracking System (ATF) software. ATF, also known as talent management systems (TMS) is used to garner, analyze, and coordinate resumes and applicant information. One important fact – these tracking systems screen out about one half of all resume submissions. Many unsuccessful online job seekers have long believed that their online resume submissions go into an obscure resume abyss. These futile job hunters may really be on to something! One reason, at least 40-50% of all online submissions by job hunters get screened as “not having the basic qualifications for the job” even though the submitter may truly have the qualifications. These candidates simply failed to place those qualifications into their resume via select keywords.

To make an impact, and prove you are qualified for a position, when applying for a position titled “operations manager” ensure that both of the title words – “operations” and “manager” are strategically placed in your resume (preferably in the top one third). Note: Another way to enter the chasm of resume doom is to confuse the screening/tracking software with the presentation of your information and dates in the “Job History” or “Experience” section. Always list the employer first and then list dates of employment (on the right side of the page).

Headhunters and Recruiters like “dynamic” “pop off of the page” verbiage! While your resume design should be presented in a simple, easy-to-read format to get the best results, each sentence within your “Skills/Value Added” and “Employment History” sections should start off with dynamic and anomalous action words. Such pop out lead-in’s can include action words such as “Employed forward thinking leadership to motivate staff…”, or “Led teams in operational and compliance initiatives, improving internal control, and financial results…”.

Remember – It’s not about you, it’s all about the Headhunter or Recruiter and their company or the company they represent. Take a look at the company’s website for clues to their values – can you align yourself with a company’s culture (often defined by their mission statement)? Aligning yourself and your resume with the organization and its mission is extraordinarily important for success in any online resume submission.

 

Articles on talent management in professional services firms from Halogen Software

What Can a Career Blog Do For You?

Looking for a job has changed a lot in recent years, in part because of the changes in technology. There was a time when people with computer skills were in the minority, but now it seems like significant computer skills are needed for almost any job, from those in the auto industry to those in the medical industry. By taking the time to read a career blog or two, you will see what skills you need to update to make yourself more marketable in today’s marketplace.

 

What Can You Learn From a Career Blog?

Perhaps the most striking thing that you will learn from reading a career blog is that your personal life is now pretty much public knowledge. What this means is that every time you apply for a job you have a 70% chance that the potential employer will look for your name or email address online and see what you do in your spare time.

So, if you like to post smart aleck remarks on blogs or you have some strange habits or affiliations, you should make sure that they are cleared off the internet before you start searching for a job. If you can, you should use one email address that is only used for job searching, and that will help make it harder for potential employers to find out about you.

What Kinds of Blogs Are There?

When it comes to finding a career blog that will help you to find a job, you will see that there are actually quite a few of them out there, depending on what industry you want to work in. Many of these blogs are written by people who really have a passion for their job or who are leaders in their field. You may even come across some blogs that are written by recruiters.

Should You Sign Up With a Recruiter?

One of the things that you will learn from a career blog is that although a recruiter may be able to help you find a job, their real benefit to you is perfecting your resume. They will be able to show you the right way to write your resume so that potential employers find you attractive. Unfortunately, recent studies show that across most career paths, only about one in 20 people actually find a job through a recruiting company.

What If You Still Can’t Find a Job?

The truth is that reading other peoples’ blogs isn’t the only way to get a job these days. In fact, if you consider yourself something of an expert in your field, now is a great time to start your own blog. You can write about what interests you in your field, how you got started, and why you like it. When you write with enthusiasm, you will soon see that other people sign up to get regular updates of your writing, and you never know if one of those people might be someone who knows someone who has a job opening for you!

 

Jenna Pearson is a personal branding expert and a contributing writer to Career Rocketeer, a very comprehensive career blog for career entrepreneurs. Save time and money by getting FREE in-depth information on personal branding, as well as insightful tips and tricks on turbo-boosting your career, at this website: www.careerrocketeer.com.

Take This Job and Shove It! Re-Inventing Yourself in the New Economy

Stressed out from the economy and looking for a new job? Maybe it’s time for you to be your own boss. That’s right – fire your boss! Go on…I dare ya!

 

There are so many considerations when contemplating working for yourself, but taking the time to think ahead and plan can give you a healthy start and save you wasted time.

I’m retired and married to a stressed-out salesman. We’re baby-boomer “almost-empty-nesters” who faced dire financial straits, and needed to do something. Poor job prospects for myself + one job already in jeopardy = SCARY!

Does this scenario sound familiar to you or someone you know? It doesn’t matter whether you’re rich, poor or anything in between… if your current standard of living is suddenly eliminated or reduced, it’s traumatic. Everything changes. If you happen to have kids in college, you can rack up credit card debt and expenses that outpace your income quickly. This story sounds like so many others these days, perhaps even yours. Desperate times call for desperate measures. Wait – not so fast. You don’t really need to act out of desperation. When you come from a place of fear, that’s more of a reaction. proactive vs reactive. When you take action based upon reliable, proven “information”, that’s being proactive. You’ll be coming from a place of power! It’s time to re-invent yourself.

Have you been entertaining the notion of becoming an entrepreneur? Who wouldn’t love the idea of being your own boss, setting your own work schedule, doing whatever, whenever, however. Being an entrepreneur definitely appealed to me, but I really wanted to do it from my home. I wanted it to be on my terms. I knew I didn’t want to trade my time for some piddly minimum wage job, or have to answer to someone else. I didn’t want anyone else to have control over my income, period. What I still had to consider, though, was what kind of business could I do from my home that had the potential to earn significant income quickly as well as long-term?

I’m pretty good at watching emerging trends, but it’s blatantly obvious that technology has really changed our world. Just watch the advertising on TV for a dizzying array of “Visit us on the web at: every-possible-store-you-can-think-of.com”. You don’t even have to get out of your pajamas to shop! The flip side of that is, you don’t even have to get out of your pajamas to work! BINGO! The old saying, if you can’t beat ’em, join ’em was never more true than in the age of the internet.

Technology advances so rapidly that you either have to get on board with it, or get left behind, and the really great thing is that the internet levels the playing field for solopreneurs. You can have a business just like the “Big Boys”. Anyone can be in the game!

It’s a good idea to develop an understanding of the value of residual income. It’s when the work is done up front, but you continue to get paid long after that. Explore ideas that fit that category, as well as what the initial costs would be and filter out the ones that don’t fit your personal situation. Finally, you need to feel good about your choice. Decide ahead on some criteria for you to be able to assess the merits of each of your prospective businesses. Here are some things to ask yourself for each one: Does it… can it.. will it

– provide value and help others?

– allow me flexibility and creativity?

– be delivered with integrity?

– be F.U.N.? (don’t underestimate this one. The more enjoyable it is, the more likely you are to sustain longevity.

Have you given adequate thought to starting your own home business? What’s your criteria? What are you interested in? What are your passions? What are your talents and skills?

Everyone is different, and your circumstances are unique to you, but it’s important to have a good sense of where you and your family are, in terms of finances, time constraints, family obligations, goals, motivation, etc. Take some time to write down how you’re currently feeling. It’s important to get “out of your head” in order to get at your feelings.

Here are some questions to stimulate your thinking and reveal your feelings about your current situation. Grab yourself a notebook and be really honest and write everything down. Generally, your first instinct is the most closely related to your true feelings. Take your time, there are no wrong answers. When you’re done, read through your answers again. When you’re done with that, read them again, but this time read them out loud to yourself.

What does your current financial picture look like? Do you have poor monthly cash flow? Barely hanging on? Are you OK for now, but not looking good in the near term? Or do you have good control of your finances but just need career change?

What is your current emotional state? Healthy? Stressed? Depressed? Motivated? etc.

Where do you see yourself in 3 months If you do NOTHING? What about in 6 months? 1 year from now?

What special knowledge, training, talents or skills do you have?

What special tools do you have at your disposal?

What amount of time do you have that you’re willing to devote to a home business?

List 3 potential home-business ideas that interest you and list why.

Do you feel like you will have the support of loved ones once you start your home business? If not, how will you proceed?

Do you see anything that could possibly distract you from your goals?

Now you have a starting point to work from. Don’t be afraid or discouraged by what you wrote or how you feel. Sometimes it can be a little shocking to read and hear what your true feelings are. Again, this is more of a starting point. Armed with this information you can now begin to lay out a plan for what direction you want to go.

Soon you’ll be able to set your detailed goals and put the gears in motion to earn profits in your home business.

 

Eryn McCormick is an online marketer and home-based business entrepreneur. She is a retired teacher and coach. Her passions are blogging and writing, especially about health and wellness topics, back pain, nutrition. She is an avid golfer, enjoys travel and is married with two grown daughters.

How To Pick The Perfect Career At 40 And Over

Ever found yourself wondering where you would begin to figure out how to pick the perfect career, something new that you would be really excited and passionate about?

 

Are you thinking “Right… Now that sounds impossible!”

Have a job? Do you like what you do for your job? How long have you had this job?

Define Your Life Goals and Business Goals To Figure Out How To Pick The Perfect Career

It is definitely possible and can be empowering when you can figure out how to pick the perfect career. It is helpful when you write down in detail your life goals and your business goals and list the prerequisites you need for your new career or business.

What things are you most passionate about? Your family and loved ones? Do you want to have the time and financial freedom you dream about?

Possibly your innermost passion boils down to being able to make a difference in the world by helping others.

It could be something as basic as wanting a new car or house.

Understanding your passion means knowing your WHY, your CAUSE, your MISSION, the driving forces that fill you with energy and excitement and motivates you to take daily ACTION!

Is there a specific activity you are really passionate about, one you could focus on and use to figure out how to pick your perfect career?

For me personally, this could be travel, skiing, or inspiring and helping others.

What past situations and experiences do you want to avoid in the future? Being scammed, losing money, dealing with people who do not have integrity, or simply being bored at work?

Be sure you put these on your list of needs and prerequisites

Are you fed up with feeling like you’ve been controlled by your job or your boss? With any job, the company ends up making more than you do!

Do you dream about having more flexibility in your life to be able to do the things you want with the people you love new?

Have you been searching for something and are now finding yourself so skeptical you don’t know who or what to believe and aren’t even sure how to perform due diligence?

Do you have specific questions you ask to get the information you need in order to make a solid, informed decision?

Let me share some of my personal experiences in going through this process. I hope it opens your eyes and inspires you to take action so you can plug into something for which you can have passion and excitement too.

I’ve had regular jobs, some I liked, some I couldn’t stand. Having to be at work at the times someone else mandated were never my cup of tea.

There are a variety of entrepreneurial experiences in my past including import/export, telecommunications, three different multi-level-marketing businesses, and being an independent real estate investor.

Some of these choices I made just to make money. The entrepreneurial experience in telecommunications happened with two friends of mine, which ended up being a really bad idea as one of them did not have any integrity when it came to business.

The bottom line is it’s critical to have personal responsibility and to have proper accountability in place.

With three of my entrepreneurial experiences I did not understand the vital necessity of these components and ended up being taken advantage of by individuals I had once trusted.

Hindsight is great. Every one of these outcomes occurred because of one person and one person only… And that would be… Me!

Well, I decided no more being bummed when I looked in the mirror! I’d completely had it and really wanted to get on track for my dreams and I now realized this started with me.

Integrity begins within each of us and this is a great place to begin. I now work on myself just about every day.

I now have passion for what I do. I know my business goals and have a business plan that has allowed me to select prerequisites for how to find the perfect career.

I’ve focused on my personal self-management and productivity, or how to most effectively utilize myself in the time I have. Generally, this is viewed this as time management. Since time is an ever decreasing asset, it makes more sense to me to figure out how to improve the way we manage ourselves within the time we have available.

The mindset I have developed and the related results have started to change dramatically. I’ve cleaned up the clutter in my life, made it a focused point to structure my time into productive chunks and have become more disciplined with how I use my time.

I’ve figured out how to combine my passions for travel and helping others and have a fun idea for how to bring my passion for skiing into the mix.

This really rejuvenates and excites me. It gets my energy jacked up because I can focus on helping others to change their lives.

A few of the most important factors that have helped me the most are:

* Finding a step-by-step comprehensive system I can follow to train and learn something new.

* Finding a personal, professional mentor to help push me and hold me accountable.

* Forming a small like-minded mastermind group to brainstorm, help each other and have accountability built in.

* Working on my personal mindset and leadership skills every day.

* Having a fun method to visualize my dreams and goals daily.

I have made a conscious decision to make sure integrity is at the core of everything I do and is also a defining characteristic for all of my relationships.

Work on figuring out what you want more than anything. Get it on paper. Focus on it. Formulate your business plan for success with your own personal prerequisites to help you determine how to pick the perfect career.

 

Top 2% Author for Internet Marketing Category!

Peter’s passions include family, travel, skiing, islands, adventure and inspiring others to believe in themselves, to commit to take daily action to realize their potential to get results. Commit to taking consistent ACTION, today!

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Finding a Job Over 50: How to Effectively Approach the Market in 2012

The current job market can be difficult enough for new college graduates, but for those re-entering the market after more than twenty years of stable employment, it can be much less welcoming. Because of age bias and the incessant labeling of those over 50 as “overqualified,” baby boomers have to take a very different approach to the job market than younger generations. The Bureau of Labor Statistics revealed that it takes an average of 22 weeks for someone over 55 to find a job, compared with an average of just 16 weeks for younger workers. Although this may not be the most comforting statistic, there are ways to make 2012 your year despite the obstacles that might lie ahead. 

Build a better you 

Before you can start working on your professional image, you have to devote some time to personal matters like your health and general well-being. To feel truly refreshed and invigorated for 2012, commit to better habits in your daily life that focus on your physical and mental health. Make simple life changes, like exercising a few times a week and eating healthier. The results will make all the difference in your outlook on life and your ability to cope with the stresses of the job search. 

Focus on education 

No matter how old you are, there are always new things to learn. Developing new skills can give you a sense of self-sufficiency in your personal and professional life. Sometimes you need to arm yourself with an up-to-date education before you can even become a viable candidate for potential employers. Enrolling in a traditional institution might seem daunting or impractical based on where you are in your life, so you might consider online alternatives to work toward updating your education in a way that works for you. An online bachelor degree will not only look great on your resume, but can help you get a better idea of the current status of your industry. 

Build your online presence 

Most tech-savvy twenty-somethings already know all of the ins and outs of social networking, but older generations may not be as well-versed in this fundamental aspect of the job search. To improve your chances of finding a job, you can build your online presence by creating professional social networking and blogging accounts on LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter and Blogger. You can use these sites to your advantage in the job market by emphasizing your communication skills and developing professional connections with individuals in your industry. Familiarizing yourself with current social networking trends can also be applied to tasks you may be assigned while on the job in the future. 

Consider “recareering” 

Sometimes the lack of fulfillment you have with your current career could simply be because you’ve lost your passion for the industry. It’s natural to want to implement change in your life after several years of doing the same thing, which is why you should consider taking advantage of recareering opportunities to find fulfillment from your job. Recareering would naturally involve quitting your old job, going back to school, and starting from the bottom of the corporate ladder; however, the new outlook it will bring to your professional life makes it all worth it in the end. 

 Reentering the job market as a mature worker can be a challenge, but committing to improving yourself can lead to a new and improved career—and that’s the kind of advice that’s valuable at any age.

 

5 Reasons You Should Consider Career Re-Training

 

Once you are established in your field, it can be difficult to make the transition into a second career. However, many people find it is the smartest move they ever made. There are several advantages to career re-training, but the transition takes time, money and effort. If you’re taking this step, start planning as soon as possible. No matter where you are in your work life, consider the benefits below and decide career re-training makes sense for you after all. 

You can expand your options

 

Starting a second career is never as tempting as when you’ve just been laid off. Forced to make a fresh start, you have spare time—whether you like it or not—to do research, get training and find a new job. By considering a new path, you open the door to many more opportunities. You also can bring a unique perspective to a job interview. 

You work in a competitive field

 

Unfortunately, in some fields, experience isn’t valued as much as youthful energy, and some industries simply aren’t hiring. If you work in a highly competitive industry like the media, layoffs are always a possibility, especially in today’s economy. Prepare now for a second option, or simply expand upon your existing knowledge. For example, publishers and editors should take coursework in e-books and digital media to maintain viability and avoid being replaced by a (cheaper) fresh face. 

You want a way to keep an income after retirement

 

Once you’ve retired, you may find you want to continue working in some capacity, either for personal enjoyment or a little extra cushion. Instead of settling for retail, re-train in an entirely new field. Business and medical professionals often bring their expertise to the classroom, either for online colleges or in the K-12 system. You can also brush up on your technical know-how in certificate programs to get an entry-level job outside your comfort zone. 

You need to allow a year for the transition

 Entrepreneurs agree that it takes a full 12 months to move into a new career. Between networking, job hunting, obtaining an online bachelor degree and saving up the funds to make the switch, it isn’t a quick or easy process. Better to begin now, before something changes and you don’t have a choice anymore. It’s especially beneficial to start early on that bachelor degree; you can balance school with work since you’ll be making your own schedule. As an added bonus, it’s very possible to be discreet about your plans. 

You can find increased satisfaction in a job you’re passionate about 

You’re spending 40 or more hours a week on your career. Shouldn’t it be something you love? Many successful non-profits began with a frustrated worker deciding to give up the 9-to-5 to try to solve a problem. No matter what field you pursue, if you incorporate your existing hobbies or interests, it will benefit your peace of mind and make you a better employee.

Do You Have A Brand?

It is a cold winter Sunday morning. I’m running 20 minutes late. Church starts at 11 a.m. It is 11 a.m. I still have to pick up a child I’m mentoring who lives 15 minutes away. I arrive at his home. Instead of sending my usual text “I’m here,” I anxiously, but gently blow the horn. He walks to the car, opens the door, and jumps in. While pulling the seatbelt, he says, “Ms. Renee, you are the only person that trusts me.”

 

Showing no emotion, yet completely shocked by his eyebrow-raising statement, I wait to hear the click sound of the seatbelt that lets me know it’s okay to begin to back out of the driveway. As I put the car in reverse I’m suspiciously wondering: Am I about to get punked by a seven-year old? Shifting to a mindset lacking emotion or judgment, I asked, “Why do you say that?” Without hesitation he said, “Because every time something happens, my mom asks me what happened, but when I tell her she doesn’t believe me.” Trying to be objective, yet wiser than the mini man, I threw out another question. “So why doesn’t she believe you?” I don’t know, he replied.

I understood his bewilderment. Like what many of my adult clients face, this young child’s quandary illustrated a classic personal branding issue based on past events and behaviors. I searched my mental database looking for an age appropriate way to explain his problem and how he could solve it.

After serious contemplation, I couldn’t decide. Hesitant to guide him from pure assumption that he had created some trust challenges that needed correcting, I waited to collect more data. Driving on to our destination, I decided that reassuring him with a list of people who trusted him would suffice for the moment. I did, however, bookmark his statement intending to revisit it when I could best serve him.

Later that day we went to his favorite place, McDonald’s. After eating a six-piece Chicken McNugget Happy Meal, a cherry pie, and drinking some chocolate milk, he claimed he was still hungry. Surprised, I asked, “Are you sure?” Nodding his head up and down I continued, “What would you like?” He pointed to an oversized color poster hanging on the window that advertised a 10-piece Chicken McNugget for $1.99. “I want that,” he said energetically. “It’s only a dollar ninety-nine.” I didn’t offer to buy it for him right away because I wanted to give myself more time to think and make a good decision.

Finally I asked, “And what else?” He added, “A small fry.” After some savvy seven-year old negotiation, I silently opened my purse and pulled out my wallet. Looking for $3 for the $2.99 meal, I began explaining to him how to go to the counter, place his order, and pay the cashier. Watching closely from afar, I heard the cashier say, “You don’t have enough money.” Thinking that I could have made a mistake and not wanting him to feel embarrassed, I rushed over to find out where I went wrong in totaling $1.99 + $1 = $2.99.

Puzzled by the miscount, I looked probingly into the eyes of the cashier and asked, “He doesn’t have enough money?” She confidently replied, “He ordered a 10-piece Chicken McNuggets, a small fry-and a smoothie.”

I smiled at her, peered down at the mini man, and gave him my you’ve-been-naughty look. I requested that she remove the smoothie from the order. I then walked slowly back to the dining area to wait patiently and wisely for him. As I perused my mental database again for the best way to handle this defining moment, I suddenly remembered the statement he had made earlier. But before I could say one word, the 4’2″ fella hopped up in the seat and cleverly declared that the smoothie was for me. “I wanted to surprise you,” he announced.

I thanked him for his attempt at generosity. Then I carefully constructed an illustration that explained why surprising someone with a gift by spending their money on what he believed they wanted failed to exhibit genuine kindness. I also revisited his opening statement for the day, “Ms. Renee, you are the only person that trusts me.” This led to his first free coaching session on personal branding and its impact on his present and future relationships and endeavors.

If you are like him, you may not realize that you have a brand that you’ve been consciously or unconsciously building since you came to this planet. It’s the reason you were treated a particular way in school by your classmates and teachers. It’s what’s causing you to be overlooked and underestimated. It’s your brand that is still tagging along with you determining your personal and professional advancement.

The most important point to recall is that you have a brand. At any moment, you can assess it, redesign, and launch a new brand, which is probably the reason you are reading The Bridge to Your Brand.

If you’re just beginning the branding process, I would recommend that you complete this exercise. Write down three adjectives you think describe you. Then select and ask three people to provide you with three adjectives that describe you. Consider a family member, friend, and co-worker. Ask a customer, neighbor, or pastor. Supervisors, spouses, and children are also great contributors to this fact-finding process.

It is important that you give them permission to be honest and objective. Tell them that you are trying to grow and need their help. This will ease their mind to share their honest thoughts and feelings with you. Do not punish them for their honesty by debating, defending, or forcing them to justify their submissions. More than likely, the adjectives that you see more than once or the synonyms to those words indicate the way you’re received and perceived by others.

Even if you don’t like, agree with, or want to accept the descriptors, you have to remember that it’s the way others see you that is important during the research stage. It’s like going to the doctor; a diagnosis comes through the process of elimination. You have to figure out what is and isn’t working for you. What you’re doing right and what you’re doing wrong. What you like about what people are receiving and perceiving from you and what you don’t like.

As I tell my clients, stop saying, “I don’t care about what people say about me.” That’s not a true statement. You may not care about what everyone is saying about you, but you care about what some people are saying about you especially those you depend on for support. And, everyone needs support from others.

Did the adjectives that you wrote down to describe yourself match the ones given to you by others? The data collected serves as a starting point to awaken you to the fact that people have a clear opinion of you. That opinion matters, especially in environments where you spend the majority of your time-at home, work, and in other social settings. Awareness is growth. Are you awake and aware of what’s going on around you? What about what’s going on because of you?

©2011 All rights reserved. The Bridge to Your Brand Likeability, Marketability, Credibility will be available on paperback beginning August 15, 2011. Pre-order your copy today.

 

S. Renee, is a branding and life coach, motivational speaker and author of There Is More Inside and The Bridge to Your Brand. You can visit her website http://www.srenee.com/. Or preview The Bridge at http://srenee.com/products.htm. © 2011 Copyrights. All Rights Reserved.

Running a Secret Executive Job Search

 

  • “I’m afraid if I post my resume online, my current employer will find it.”
  • “The position sounds like a perfect fit, but I can’t risk submitting my resume.”
  • “What if word gets back to my employer that I have been looking for another job?”
  • “I found a blind ad that describes exactly the position I am looking for, but what if the advertiser is my current company?”

 

I hear these fears from executive job seekers frequently. To avoid detection they limit their job search to only contacting a few select organizations, often excluding some of the very companies that are most likely to value their experience.

Don’t let fear of jeopardizing your current position cripple your job search and keep you from landing the job you want. There are plenty of techniques that will protect your identity and allow you to earn interviews and generate meetings with prospective employers.

1. Use Your Network.

It is estimated that 60-70% of all job hunters find employment through personal referrals. This approach also has an additional benefit: it allows you to contact companies while keeping your identify confidential.

Make a list of the companies where you would like to interview, then compile a list of the contacts you know, or know of, that might be able to arrange introductions at these employers.

Show your list of target employers to each contact, and see who they can contact for you. If they are willing to pick up the phone and make a call, that is ideal. But even a quick email can set the stage for further conversations. Ask your contacts to arrange interviews with the people they know – department heads, line managers, the C-suite are all preferred to contacting human resources directly. The management contacts are often able to create positions, and know about potential openings long before the personnel department does.

This approach works incredibly well because your contact has a relationship and credibility with each department head, etc that they call or email – this provides you with credibility as well. A huge bonus is that your contact does not need to reveal your name unless there is interest and an interview is arranged.

Another good approach is to have your personal contacts send e-mails to managers who might have a need for someone with your qualifications. Your contacts don’t have to know these managers – they only need to hold respected positions in the same field. Their signature block in the email with employer name and title, will give them – and you – the necessary credibility. If you’re fortunate enough to have a contact who’s well-known in your industry, his or her endorsement will have even greater impact.

This email should state that the sender represents an extremely qualified person who wishes anonymity because of a current employment situation. After briefly describing your qualifications, your contacts should state their willingness to arrange interviews with any management that want to meet you.

2. Develop Relationships With Executive Search Firms

Retained search firms are who executive job seekers want to contact. There are two types of search firms: Contingency and Retained.

Contingency firms usually deal with placements in the $40,000-$100,000 salary range. They get paid only when the candidate they present accepts a position, so they are also more likely to suggest you for more openings. This could compromise your privacy, so if you do deal with a contingency firm, make sure they understand your desires and ask that they always contact you prior to proposing you for an opening.

Retained search firms primarily work with positions paying more than $100,000 annually. Retained firms are employed by companies, not candidates and are paid even if the candidates they propose are not hired. They will help keep your privacy because they never “broadcast” out names of candidates. But they are also seeking candidates with a specific background, for specific positions, and if you do not meet their criteria, they will not present you to employers.

Our clients have had great success with our programs to help introduce you to executive search firms. We maintain two lists – Elite Executive Search Firms which represent the top 1% of all retained search firms across North America, and Retained Search Firms which is a comprehensive list of ALL retained search firms in North America. These firms are used to receiving confidential resumes, and are usually looking to fill positions only with currently employed candidates.

3. Use LinkedIn

This does not require a long commentary – use LinkedIn. Without it, you are missing tons of opportunity. Employers and recruiters alike are relying more and more on LinkedIn to find potential candidates.

It’s a powerful tool, and the best part is that you can put all of your information out there, without appearing as though you are in the market for a new job.

The networking opportunities on LinkedIn are huge, and need to be used. It’s much too detailed to go into all the ways to use it here – but there are many tutorials out there on LinkedIn basics to get you started.

Employed job seekers often don’t realize how many options they have for contacting companies without their employers knowing about it. I’ve seen it happen over and over – you will land a new position without having jeopardized your current situation.

 

Candace Barr was the Marketing Director for a national law firm for 10 years before transitioning to the executive search industry as the VP of Research. She spent years developing proprietary research processes and procedures to identify key companies, executives and their direct contact information.

Barr Research, LLC and Strategic Executive Connections were established in 2010 to provide this valuable service to executive job seekers, as well as executive recruiters seeking to contact high quality candidates.

The overwhelming positive response to our unique service says it all – Whether you are looking to contact one particular company, or target an entire industry, our process will advance your job search and industry connections beyond your expectations. http://StrategicExecutiveConnections.com

Secrets to Success in Your Career: Get Moving and Do It NOW!

Are you happy with your job? Do you have the tools that you need to be successful? Are you prospering in your career – or do you feel held back?

 There is one key to success in any profession or career – that key is YOU!

Let’s begin with a paramount truth: You are responsible for your own success or failure in life. Whatever the circumstances, you choose to react how you react. You choose action in the right direction, or neglect and complacency. Accept this responsibility and you will begin to make changes to help your life improve. You won’t be able to NOT guide yourself towards better things. Don’t be a victim.

You are your own “Personal Services Corporation”

This concept is stolen directly from the author and speaker, Brian Tracy. It’s absolutely true. While you may work for a company, it isn’t “you” that they are paying for. It’s not payment for your time at your desk. They are paying for your skills and abilities, commitment and hard work, attitudes and orientations, production and output.

As your own personal services corporation, it’s up to you to invest wisely to improve your business. What skills can you gain to make you more valuable? Is there equipment that you can use to make your corporation more efficient and profitable? What can you improve upon to help you be more valuable?

It’s hard not to think at this point – “I’m putting in this time and effort for someone else!” Agreed. It feels just like that. Don’t get caught in short-term thinking. The enjoyment that you will get by being able to leverage your own investment on your own behalf makes all of the time, money, and other sacrifice worthwhile. The moment when you realize that you have options because of your own efforts is like hitting a home run or scoring the winning basket.

Stop complaining. Invest in yourself and you’ll never be sorry. Your investment is the foundation for success in your life.

Pick a goal – now!

Ok, so you feel like you are in a rut. You don’t make enough money or perhaps you are not happy enough. You are carrying too much weight. You don’t like the way you dress. Whatever it is that you want to improve or accomplish, pick a realistic goal and attach a timeline to it. Goals without dates are just wishes. Pick a modest goal and set a date. For example:

By the end of this month, I will lose 5 pounds.

By August 1st, I will pass that certification.

By September 1st, my website will be online, and I will have a main page, a contacts page, and an information request page.

Write the goal down somewhere you can see it all the time. If it is some goal that you want to keep private, just print out a page with a circle on it. You know what it means when you look at it and that’s what matters. At my last job, I had two symbols looking me in the face every minute of every day. I was able to keep my goals in my mind and be reminded of them all of the time. It was a GREAT tool to help me refocus on what was important.

Action Orientation – get it!

Do it. Start. Go! Take a step NOW. Action orientation is about making things happen. Planning is important. Doing something is more important. Take my advice – even if you feel like you have no idea what you are doing, do SOMETHING. Often our best lessons are often in the form of our failures. If you have many paths before you and you choose the wrong one, you now have one less wrong path to choose. If you make things happen, you will gain wisdom and you will accomplish your goals. It’s inevitable with enough effort and persistence. These ideas are again stolen from various positive thinkers, including Brian Tracy and Anthony Robbins. I invested in them while investing in myself and it has paid off.

Failure? Not if you are still asking “How?”

Short term failure is OK. Everyone hits the brick wall from time to time. Everyone has an off day or a bad performance. That is just fine and it’s not the end of the world. The key is to keep asking yourself the very simple but important question: “How?” It’s important because it provokes thought. When you ask yourself how, you will immediately get your mind in the mode of searching for an answer. “How?” brings up options. Hit a brick wall again? Ask “How?” again. Another byproduct of continuing past small failures is that they become less important. In my life I’ve had presentations fail. Equipment that doesn’t perform for some reason when I need it to. In the beginning, it was traumatic. I was upset that I had spent so much time preparing only to have it blow up when I really needed it to work. Over time, I’ve learned that failures are going to happen and many times I can turn that into an advantage. Everyone understands what it’s like to have something go wrong and if you have the right attitude about it, everyone in the room can be pulling for you by the end! Ultimately, failure doesn’t happen until you give up. Before that, you are still working on it. You can always decide to go a different direction, but that’s not failure either. That is learning through a process and making the decision to change your goals based on the new information. One less wrong path to pursue.

“Trinity, GET UP!” Ok, maybe it’s corny but I refer to this line from “The Matrix” movie in my head all of the time. In this scene, the character Trinity has just been through a stressful time and she is on the ground. She’s got a choice – to lie there and wait for doom, or get up and keep fighting. She tells herself to get up – and guess what? She gets up and keeps going. We all need that message and it’s not going to mean more from anyone else than it does coming from your own lips. If you are down, GET UP!

Results?

Invest in yourself, set goals, become action oriented, become responsible in your own mind for your own success and one of two things will happen for you:

Your employer will see your commitment and the benefits, and they will reward you accordingly. That is great and everyone is happy.

-Or –

Your employer will ignore your contributions. They will treat them as an expected part of the job. They will act as though you are doing the minimum and guess what? You are lucky to be employed. Let me tell you, magic will happen for you if this is the case. This is a game changer for the rest of your life. You understand the effort, time, and expense that you put in to upgrade your job skills or equipment. If you paid the price, the finance and sweat, you own the upgrades. Your boss may not think you have more value – but most importantly – you will KNOW you have more value. Everything can change for you. You can be more confident. You can use your confidence to upgrade your life. If you happen to be in a position where you can market your own skills directly it will become clear that your value is being abused and unappreciated. Why not keep the benefits of your extra effort and training for yourself? If you don’t happen to be in a career where you can easily go off on your own, you still benefit. There is no more attractive trait for a candidate to have for a prospective employer than self confidence. You are someone who knows how to get your job accomplished and you have done what it takes to get the job done right.

Bob Langys is a lifelong nerd with a passion for solving problems. His passion for solving problems and working with technology has led him to a career in networking and IP Telephony and has afforded him the opportunity to work with a wide variety of businesses and solutions. Recently he has specialized in using Cisco equipment on Asterisk IPBX systems. For more info checkout his personal website at: http://www.langys.com

Unemployment Survival Tips

Losing a job is one of the most unfortunate things one can ever experience. It can make you worry about lots of things such as your monthly bills, health insurance, and grocery stuffs. If you have been a victim of a wrongful termination recently and feels like you are nowhere to go, the following are some of the things you may want to consider to keep yourself going while joblessness is blocking your way.

 

1. Get Your Final Compensation 
Every employee is entitled to a final paycheck. The state law requires an employer to issue a final paycheck to the employee immediately, may it be the next business day, the next payday, or within a certain amount of days. In some states, the employee may be entitled to compensation for unused vacation time. Severance package may also be given to an employee as an additional compensation. However, under the state law, an employer is not obliged to give severance pay. A severance pay will only be granted if it is stated in the written contract, if an employee handbook documented the employer’s policy for severance pay, or if the employer has said it verbally.

2. File for Unemployment Compensation 
The state law allows any unemployed worker to accumulate unemployment compensation if the termination was not due to delinquency that was intentional and repetitive, the employment was for a certain amount of time, the worker received a certain amount of salary, the worker is capable of working immediately, and the worker is physically able of working.

3. Healthcare Coverage 
Former employees have the right to continue a healthcare coverage for up to 18 months or longer, depending on the employer’s plan. This is under the Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act (COBRA) of 1986. The previous employee must fully-pay the damages but the cost is actually cheaper than obtaining coverage of your own.

4. Apply for a Part-time Job 
A part-time job will provide you income temporarily. While looking for a full-time work, you can consider doing handy work, baby sitting or house sitting. In this case, you will still become productive while waiting for the update of your permanent job application.

5. Remove Unnecessary Expenses 
You will probably know the importance of saving in times of unemployment. Every single cent counts and you will not have the guts to spend for needless commodities and activities. Sort out your grocery list. Buy stuffs that are of high significance. Do not engage in activities which used to be part of your leisure time. Be more practical.

6. Do not Commit to New Debts 
If you do not have any important monetary matters to spend to, do not acquire debts because it will just lead you to bigger financial dilemmas. It is vital for you to impose strict budgeting to manage your lifestyle.

 

Jester Maru used to write several articles for a Law Group in Los Angeles, California. He personal loves writing articles on the topic los angeles employment lawyers and california employee rights<.

Toward Greener Pastures: Older Americans and Sustainable Solutions

Many older Americans with manufacturing backgrounds are beginning to find themselves in precarious employment situations. While they might have decades of experience in highly skilled manufacturing areas, they are facing uncertain futures. 

 Manufacturing jobs were one of the best tickets into comfortable middle class lifestyles from the postwar manufacturing boom until the last few years. Unfortunately, these manufacturing jobs are increasingly moving overseas to nations like China and India. And as they begin to recede into the distance, political rhetoric and campaign speeches often emphasize bringing back the glory days of American manufacturing might. And it’s true that there is a bright future for American manufacturing—but the old manufacturing jobs that have disappeared are never coming back.  They’re gone for good. 

 Instead of wasting time bemoaning their loss, we ought to start looking at how to harness the power of American ingenuity that made us a manufacturing powerhouse because of our unique innovative spirit.  

 Green Manufacturing

One of the ways that the United States can continue leading manufacturing innovation is in the rapid expansion of green manufacturing.  Manufacturing workers, faced with the prospect of needing to start a second career later in life, are finding it difficult to translate their skill sets into dramatically different jobs. The growth of green manufacturing presents a unique opportunity for older workers to offer their wealth of experience in a job sector that may have the potential for better pay than other alternatives. As the importance of sustainable and responsible manufacturing processes continues to move into the mainstream of public opinion, workers in the United States have the opportunity to create the new standard that the world will follow.

The Growth of Greener Living

The move toward sustainability has begun to permeate all aspects of our lives.  Earthship homes are good examples of ideas moving from the fringe into the broader mainstream. Back in the early 1970’s when Mike Reynolds began constructing these rammed earth and tire homes in the desert of the American Southwest, they carried connotations of the hippy dippy fringe. But earthship homes are quickly becoming popular throughout the United States and Europe. The popularity comes from their passive solar design and the heavy use of recycled materials. These factors combine to create energy efficient, low cost homes that can operate entirely off the grid in a self-sustained manner.

 Green Education

The growing understanding that sustainability needs to be an integral part of our collective outlook comes in large part from the Baby Boomer generation. The hippy movement may not have lasted, but the drive toward a greener future survived to flourish into a mainstream ecological consciousness.

It’s appropriate that America’s move forward into the new frontiers of making sustainability and green manufacturing both profitable and aesthetically pleasing is possible by teaching young students about old ideas. The students at the Waldorf School in Costa Mesa, California experienced the opportunity to learn about practical green living solutions in a visceral way. These students go to school every day in a new 10,000-square-foot addition composed entirely of recycled steel shipping containers. Rather than the temporary mobile structures so often seen clustered around schools, these four new additions form a permanent part of the Waldorf School. There’s no better way to teach students about responsible recycling and sound environmental practices than building classrooms from recycled materials. When schools adopt green building practices, that’s evidence of green going mainstream in a big way.

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