Wednesday, February 29, 2012

10 Career Lessons From Major Success Stories

By Sarah Kahwash

The following innovators, authors, entertainers and notable celebrities didn’t find success quickly or easily, but they all share a common denominator—they toughed it out and hit it big. Read on for 10 lessons you can learn from some of Her Campus’s favorite success stories.

1. Steve Jobs: “You’ve got to find what you love.”
You’ve heard it time and again: find something you love and pursue it. Steve Jobs was taking a risk when he dropped out of Reed College and started Apple in his parents’ basement, but three decades later, he found himself at the top of a multi-billion dollar company that probably produced your computer screen. In his 2005 commencement speech at Stanford, Jobs didn’t speak so much about talent or resources or GPA, but instead told the graduates “to have the courage to follow your heart and intuition… everything else is secondary.” It’s still important to be realistic (nobody is going to hire you to surf the Internet just because you love StumbleUpon), but if you love your work, it will be easier and you will do better. In the wise words of Aristotle, “Pleasure in the job puts perfection in the work.”

2. Jennifer Hudson: Success is rarely instant.
Try to remember way back when American Idolactually mattered to the public and Jennifer Hudson was a contestant. She was eliminated before she even reached the top six singers of season 3—and yet, in the long run, she managed to outperform most of the show’s winners from every season. Less than three years after her elimination from Idol, Hudson was belting it out all over the big screen in Dreamgirlsalongside stars like Beyoncé, Jamie Foxx and Eddie Murphy. She kept at it and made her way to the top, winning an Oscar for Best Supporting Actress in Dreamgirls, releasing a Grammy-winning debut album and landing several more roles in movies like Sex and the City and The Secret Life of Bees. Learn from Hudson’s story and don’t give up just because you weren’t noticed right away; keep working hard and you’ll earn recognition.

3. Mark Zuckerberg: Build and keep a solid network.

Facebook gets a bad rap for time-wasting, friend-stalking and boy-ogling, but in reality it has brought together millions of people who might not have kept in touch otherwise. Creator Mark Zuckerberg has not only created an extensive network for the world, but for himself as well. Soon after finishing his sophomore year of college, he made connections with technology moguls like Sean Parker of Napster, Peter Thiel of PayPal, and Steve Chen, who later co-founded YouTube. And while Facebook was a smart idea to begin with, these people gave Zuckerberg the tools to materialize it and build the entrepreneurial empire he has today. That isn’t to say you should give a firm handshake and your business card to everyone you see, but keep your eyes open and don’t be afraid to meet new people. You never know where it may take you.

Lessons 4 - 10 and Complete Article

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Telepathy and resume content

Susan Gainen

Telepathy is not a job search tool. When drafting resumes and cover letters, you must share information about yourself that will be useful to a prospective employer.
How do you know what an employer  wants to know?
Know about the employer Don’t put the cart before the horse: What do you know about the employer and the work that it does?
If you do not know what the employer does, do some research. You may not learn what the managing partner had for breakfast last Friday, but you should be able to learn some basic information about the employer and its activities. Search tools:, LinkedIn, Google searches, alumni data bases if appropriate. Ask your career services professionals what they know about the employer.
If you have done the work, describe it clearly. Use all of the important buzzwords and markers of accomplishment. If you have not done the work, you must use the language of transferrable skills to show that you have done something similar which shows that you have the capacity to learn.
Caveat writer: Do not write that you are eager to advance your skills set and to grow as a law clerk or lawyer. That you may learn something while working is a collateral benefit to you and of no consequence to an employer who is trying to hire a competent lawyer or clerk to get work done today.
What does the employer know about your school? A second critical and often overlooked question for applicants: is the employer familiar with my school and its programs?
Unless the employer is an adjunct professor or very recent graduate, the answer is usually “no.”
Law schools and their programs change all the time. Unless an employer is a graduate of your law school who pays particular attention to all of the printed and electronic material that the Dean sends regularly to update grads about curriculum, faculty, and new teaching methodology, your prospective employer has no clue about your law school experience.
Someone who graduated more than 10 years ago will have no idea that you represented live clients in your clinic and went to court on their behalf. Experienced lawyers may not know how your other classes may now connect to real world problems, and without specific information, they may dismiss your study abroad program as three months of overseas drinking.

About Susan

It's all about the work...
Susan Gainen
has spent the past 25 years observing market swings, career change, new technologies and new generations bringing their own stamp and styles to work. Her clients benefit from her unique perspective on how work gets done, which combines her expertise in intergenerational communication and experience in the food business, the car business, and the business of law.

Social Media Explained - All You Need To Know

Google+ Nobody knows you peed

Average Minutes Per Visitor to Social-Media Sites in January

Facebook - 405 minutes per visitor
tumblr. - 89
Pinterest - 89
Twitter - 21
Linkedin - 17
myspace - 8
Google+ 3

Data from

Someone sent me the photo so I'm not sure where it originated.

Monday, February 27, 2012

Inside Google's recruiting machine

Silicon Valley's most venerable recruiting setup is operating in one of the most competitive hiring climates ever. It just brought on a record number of new employees. Here's how.

By Anne VanderMey, reporter

FORTUNE -- In the hot war for talent being fought in Silicon Valley, no company has an arsenal quite like Google's. Named Fortune's Best Company to Work For in 2012, the search giant made a record 8,067 hires last year -- boosting total headcount by a third. The thirteen-year-old firm's recruiting has an almost mythical quality about it, particularly for the two million candidates applying to work there each year. In terms of elite American institutions, getting a job at Google ranks with being admitted to Stanford Graduate School of Business or becoming a Navy Seal. Behind the glitz there are a few Googley basics at work: data, money (lots of it), sophisticated programming, and an army of young, eager recruiters.

Google (GOOG) does not release its recruiter headcount. It is likely huge. In 2009, the company revealed that there were about 400 internal recruiters. John Sullivan, a San Francisco State University professor who has studied Google and advises companies on hiring, estimates that the number across all departments and countries is closer to 1,000, with about 300 full-time recruiters in the U.S. and more than 600 contractors. More conservative estimates put the tally at 500. Even if the lower figure was correct, Google would have one recruiter for every 64 employees. That's a far higher ratio than the 577-to-1 average for most large companies, according to the Corporate Executive Board.

Who are Google's recruiters? They're young, highly paid and, often, on a six month contract. "They're probably the company that I've seen that uses the most [contractors]," says Michael A. Morell, co-founder and managing partner of Silicon Valley recruiting firm Riviera Partners. "There's a lot to be said for new people trying to prove themselves in the first six to 12 months." It's difficult to find an accurate or exact employee-to-recruiter ratio at the company, the number of recruiters varies dramatically. At any given time, Sullivan says, 70% of the recruiting staff might be on contract. That changes, though, as Google feels the need to gear up or cut back on hiring. "We want the best of the best to come to Google," says Todd Carlisle, its director of staffing. "We budget what it takes to find the best of the best."

Read The Rest Of The CNNMoney Article

Friday, February 24, 2012

LinkedIn Leads In Social Job Recruiting Followed By Twitter And Facebook

It’s important to note that this study examines activity by recruiters as opposed to actual job hunters. Despitethe rise of Facebook as a source for job seeking and professional networking, Bullhorn’s data shows that recruiters’ LinkedIn networks still drive more views than their Twitter and Facebook networks combined. Recruiters who post jobs on social networks are likely to receive more applications from LinkedIn, with the social network driving almost nine times more applications than Facebook and three times more than Twitter.
One interesting data point from the report—a Twitter follower is almost three times more likely to apply to a job than a LinkedIn connection, and more than eight times more likely to apply than a Facebook follower, indicating that Twitter might be a highly underutilized social recruiting channel. And Twitter followings drive almost twice as many job views per job as their Facebook fan bases.
According to the report, 48 percent of recruiters use LinkedIn exclusively. These recruiters have an average of 661 connections, and don’t leverage the other two networks for social recruiting. From there, recruiters use Twitter more than Facebook. Despite the fact that recruiters have fewer connections on Twitter (37 followers on average), 19 percent are connected to both LinkedIn and Twitter, while only 10 percent are connected to both LinkedIn and Facebook (245 friends on average).

LinkedIn Job Search Can Help You Crack the Hidden Job Market

As you’ve searched for new work, you’ve undoubtedly heard about the hidden job market. These are the jobs that never make it to the online job boards or newspaper “Help Wanted” ads. They are also usually the best jobs, the ones people conducting executive-level job searches usually desire. Fortunately, you have the ability to crack the hidden job market. And you can start by conducting a LinkedIn job search.

Finding Work with LinkedIn

You probably know what LinkedIn is. You’re probably even a member. But if you’re like many, you don’t use your LinkedIn social media account to its full potential. When you’re looking to make a job change, LinkedIn is an invaluable tool.
This social media site, designed specifically for business use, can connect you instantly to some of the top officials at the businesses at which you most want to work. One of the top job search strategies, then, is to inform your network of LinkedIn contacts that you are looking for new work. Make sure to be specific about what skills you bring and the kind of jobs for which you are looking.

The LinkedIn Job Search

Then, scan your contacts list to find anyone you’re connected to who works at the companies at which you’d most like to find a job. Once you’ve compiled this list, send them a quick message asking them if they’re available for a lunch meeting or a short phone call to discuss the culture at the companies at which they work.
Make it clear that you are not asking these people for a job. You’re simply interested in discussing company culture with them.
By meeting with these workers, you can greatly increase your knowledge of individual companies. And once you do this, you can bring that knowledge to any job interviews you happen to nab. You can even showcase this knowledge when you are applying to specific jobs or sending letters of introduction to hiring managers and executives. Being informed about a company is one way to set yourself apart from the many other individuals hoping to land jobs at these firms, too.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

5 Out-of-Date Job-Search Tactics

Forget the fancy paper and piles of bullets -- and never grovel

5 Ways to Market Your Brand on LinkedIn

LinkedIn provides plenty of marketing opportunities, but lets take a look at some of the lesser-known tools. Although not all are free, try making room in your budget for a few simple and effective marketing strategies.
Whether you’re looking to raise marketing awareness or drive sales, look for guidance from the LinkedIn team. Where else can you specify your target audience based on job title, industry, functional area and much more?
Try these five LinkedIn tools for better marketing.

1. LinkedIn Ads

Start off with self-serve LinkedIn ads. You can target your ad by geography, job function, industry, company size, seniority, age and gender, as well as company name, LinkedIn group and job title. There’e plenty of scope to define your audience.
Your ad will display either along the top, bottom or right-hand side of a member’s home or profile page, and can contain both text and an image. Link your ad to either your own website, your LinkedIn company page, your group or anywhere else you might want to send your visitor for further information. Or consider sending your visitor to your company Facebook page where you can possibly convert her into a Like.
In terms of cost, LinkedIn ads run very much the same as other text ad systems, on an auction or bid basis. You can pay either for CPC (cost per click) or CPM (cost per 1,000 impressions).
As with any advertising platform, consider LinkedIn’s advertising best practices.

2. LinkedIn Display Ads

Purchase display ads through the LinkedIn field sales team. They are IAB standard unit sizes.
The ad space to the right of everyone’s home and profile page is a prime piece of real estate for ad property. The space can be used in several ways, and is not just reserved static images. You can add video, a blog feed or even a Twitter feed.
Word-of-mouth advertising is incredibly powerful, so consider creating a recommendation ad: If anyone within your network has recommended your product or service, his recommendation would display as an ad on other people’s profiles within that person’s network. LinkedIn members can recommend the product directly from the ad.
Try these further ideas for display ads.
  • Display your company ad on your LinkedIn company page to help with brand awareness and online consistency.
  • Show your ad on every one of your employees’ profile pages. Turn each team member into a brand ambassador.
  • Advertise your LinkedIn group to a targeted audience via a display ad.
The cost of these ads is dependent on the audience you plan to target. LinkedIn will bill you on a CPM basis. Talk to a LinkedIn sales representative for further information.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Job Search Technology for LinkedIn

LinkedIn is now growing at 7500 MPH.  That’s Members Per Hour.   Speed like that, is really powerful, but speed can also kill, so be careful. 
Below we examine several pieces of job search technology that are applicable to LinkedIn.
1.      Card Munch
 Card Munch is an App that scans business cards through I phones and turns that business card into a contact and shows you that individual’s LinkedIn profile, their credentials, as well as the contacts that you have in common. The output creates a “rolodex” of business cards matched to LinkedIn profiles.  One of the greatest features here is you now not only have a connections profile email address, but their primary business email.
 2.      LinkedIn Resume Builder and/or
The power of presentation is often not fully embraced in the job search process. A classic chronological resume or Linkedin profile often does not capture your story and message.  Lots of career promotions, parallel roles/positions or concentrated company movement can get very confusing for a reader to interpret.  The Linkedin resume builder and, both try to tackle this problem, but from very different angles.
LinkedIn’s resume builder is essentially a formatting tool that attempts to capture your profile then, re-tag and structure it into a quality well formatted resume. The tool certainly grabs the content, but its ability to understand the content and properly structure it is limited. This problem is heavily exasbarated if you have customized your LinekdIn profile.  If your profile is brief and straightforward, the application has much greater utility and does save re-keying time.  That said, while LinkedIn allows very limiting structural creativity within an individual’s profile, aresume building tool can actually provide a myriad of opportunities for more creative layouts, descriptions of roles and accomplishments. takes the process further by attempting to take your LinkedIn profile and turn it into a timeline Infographic. Conceptually this is really powerful and helpful.  If your data is straight forward, it provides a great visual representation of your experience, education, skills, interests, and recommendations.   The key to the tool is to then invest 30 minutes cleaning up your Infographic information and the application also allows for plenty of presentation options around color, font, theme etc..  Like LinkedIn’s resume builder, the more straight forward your chronological job history, the better the tool performs.

LinkedIn Competitor Branches Out to 300 Million Users

BranchOut, a professional networking app built on Facebook, said it has 10 million registered users that– through Facebook connections–reach 300 million people on the social network.
While trailing far behind its biggest competitor, LinkedIn, in the number of registered users, BranchOut CEO Rick Marini said the site is now taking advantage of Facebook’s network effect to reach hundreds of millions of users, and double the number of users reached through LinkedIn.
It works like this: If someone signs up for BranchOut, all their Facebook friends are immediately put into the apps’ database. This allows BranchOut members and recruiters access to see connections of 300 million Facebook users. Still, the site only has 10 million people who have actually registered full professional profiles.
In essence, BranchOut has taken a bet, similar to companies like social game maker Zynga, on riding Facebook’s 845 million users rather than build an audience from scratch.
The success of companies like BranchOut is important to Facebook, which bases part of its pitch to potential shareholders in its IPO documents on the idea it can serve as a profitable platform for other companies. For example, Facebook currently takes a 30% cut on what Zynga makes using the site, which now amounts to 12% of Facebook’s total revenue.
Marini said BranchOut, which helps link recruiters and job seekers, has experienced rapid user growth. “It’s a network effect business and once you hit a tipping point, then everybody piles on,” he said.
But Marini admits that although BranchOut has a large number of connections, only about 4 million users come back to the app every month.
“If we’re sending people relevant jobs, that’s going to get people to come on a regular basis,” Marini said.
Recruiters also continue to flock to LinkedIn to find job applicants, and the numbers are growing. Last year, 87% of recruiters used LinkedIn, up from 78% the year before, according to data a survey conducted by social recruiting platform Jobvite.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Social Media 101 For Professional Associations


I frequently get invited to speak on social media forprofessional associations, and when I do it often seems as if the clocks in the room have been turned back 10 years since before the advent of social media. Although there are always some savvy users of social media in the room when I present, the associations themselves are usually using the same antiquated medium to promote themselves, both internally and externally: a pre-historic website and email newsletter blasts.
I always say that social media is about the convergence of information and communication. Isn’t this the mission of every professional association: To inform their members and communicate regularly to increase the networking (and business) opportunities for their members? Then why don’t more professional associations embrace and strategically leverage all that social media has to offer, and in doing so also help increase association membership while retaining existing members?
The answer to this is that, based on my own experience, most associations are 1) either managed by executives who themselves aren’t frequent users of social media and/or haven’t implemented social in their own business or 2) outsource their marketing and other management affairs to companies or firms that who do not understand social media themselves.
For a 101 primer on some easy ways that professional associations can maximize their social presence, here’s a list of 6 checklist items for your association to confirm your current state vis a vis social media:
1. Create and Encourage Engagement in a Robust LinkedIn Group
With a closed LinkedIn Group that is moderated and only open to association members, you can achieve what you do at your in-person events 24/7 online and without local boundaries. Many associations have LinkedIn Groups but haven’t really encouraged engagement inside them. It is the perfect place to share information, generate discussions, and even share job openings that your company might have. If there is any social media website made for associations, it is undoubtedly LinkedIn. Take advantage of it and leverage it as an important supplement for everything that your association does at your in-person events.
2. Sharing Your Information with the World through Blogging
Sharing information encourages current members to keep informed as well as helps introduce your association to potential new members through the power of your content. Instead of taking a walled garden approach to protecting your content to only be accessible to members, strategically summarize your internal information for the outside world to showcase your leadership within your industry and encourage others to join. Blogging has the additional benefit of aiding your professional association’s website to ensure greater search engine optimization (SEO) benefits as well.

10 Big Differences Between the Job Search of Today and Yesterday


1. Google Has Replaced the Resume
Recruiters are now using Google and LinkedIn searches to find talent, instead of paying for job-board or talent databases, like they used to do. In fact, many companies are even mandating that every new application go through a Google screening process. So that means the first page of your Google results matter much more than they ever did before.
The problem is that what Google delivers on a search for your name isn’t regulated and is very difficult for the user to control. After all, background checks are very carefully regulated in order to avoid the types of misunderstandings happening now, online. Furthermore, Google’s algorithm changes several times a year. So what can you do about it?
The last thing you should do is ignore this reality. So the job seeker has two courses of action. First, you become a publisher of your own content and flood Google’s spiders with lots of great keyword rich content, my post on finding keywords. Second, you control the results on a Google search with
2. A Summary is Enough
Today, the resume is used mostly in the screening process while actual decisions are made after interviews. And because there are so many candidates competing for each job, HR people (or hiring managers if they are tasked with recruitment) often scan resumes very briefly. In fact, the average time on a resume is 30 seconds. Most resumes today are no longer than two pages but still include the expanded sections of yesterday’s longer resumes. So keep it short and take out that extra bullet point. Check out the new service called The One Page Job Proposal.
3. Social Proof is a Must
Social proof, testimonials or recommendations seriously reduce the perceived risk of you as a candidate. The most costly mistake a hiring manager can make is to hire the wrong person. Some say that if a new-hire leaves within three months, it costs the organization one and half that person’s annual salary. And with the economy as tight as it is, you can understand why hiring managers are so risk averse.
Set their mind at ease by offering testimonials on your resume and LinkedIn profile. A good standard is to have the number of recommendations equal to 10% of the number of contacts in your network.
4. Resumes and Cover letters are Not Read on Paper Anymore
Most organizations are not receiving paper resumes and when they get them via email or their application system, they don’t print them. So expect your resumes and cover letter to be read on a computer screen. This means you have to format your documents in a way that makes screen-scanning easy.
  • Use headlines to break up content
  • Keep paragraphs short
  • Use bold and italics to emphasis key points
  • Make sure there is plenty of white space on the page
  • Use color tastefully, consider adding logos, icons or charts

Monday, February 20, 2012

12 tips for successful networking -- in person

By Mark Schnurman/The Star-Ledger 

Networking is a seminal skill for many careers. In the past, networking meant meeting people face to face at chamber of commerce, industry and other social/business events. Technology has changed that and today we network via LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter and other social networking sites. Those sites are fabulous, but nothing can replace human interaction. Looking a person in the eye, shaking his or her hand and witnessing body language allows you to build rapport and connect in a manner that social networking cannot. Here are some tips to help you succeed at the "old" art of networking.
Understand your goals. Are you networking to make business connections, learn, volunteer or get a new job? Networking functions have different tenors and purposes; therefore, it is important to visit groups before deciding to join. If you attend several events without results, don’t give up on networking, just find groups that fit better.
Have elevator speech. In about 20 to 30 seconds, be able to answer the question "what do you do?" Write it down and practice so you can articulate it clearly. Tell how you do your job, what makes you different from others and what your unique value proposition is. Whether you are competing for business, looking for referrals or seeking a new job, make it easy for people to understand what you do and remember you.
Be consistent. Have a systematic approach to networking. Create a plan and stick to it. Whether you plan to attend one networking event a week or month, consistency is vital. Over time you will become recognizable and deepen your contacts.
Try to help others. Throughout my career I have found that when I help others, it returns to me in spades. Approach networking from the vantage point of being a resource and offering assistance to others. People will remember you for this and be interested in speaking with you again. Put your goals on the back burner and think about the other person.
Master small talk. Before a networking function, brush up on current events. Being conversant in the news of the day, the financial markets, sports or anything related to the group you are meeting with will enable you to engage in necessary idle banter.

Top 5 Tips To Generate Leads On LinkedIn

by Sumoni Gupta

Before you start reading this post, I would like to ask you a question. Which all sites do you use frequently for social networking? 

Your instant reply would be Facebook and Twitter. Though they have the potential to get you some income we can’t neglect other social networking websites like LinkedIn etc. I know LinkedIn is not as exciting like Facebook or Twitter but it isn’t that bad. When I started my blogging career, I focussed on almost 10 Networking sites which also included Rediff, StumbleUpon, LinkedIn etc but now I have started neglecting it. With my second site to be launched soon I have again started to put in some efforts back on linkedIn again.

I have also discovered that it is not only a powerful networking tool but it can also help you in generating some leads or sales. With almost 150+ Million members (almost all are Bussiness Owners, Senior Management etc etc.). It has the perfect readymade audience that I was looking for my new site which would be about selling some SEO services. After going through the linkedIn again, I have come to a point that generating leads is not a big task on LinkedIn. So here are some personal tips by me on how to generate leads on linkedIn. 

1. Give a Oomph Factor to your profile Your profile would decide your linkedIn presence, and if your profile is not upto date then you are missing out on something big. So its time to change it and make it par with others. Add your experience in your LinkedIn profile. Provide an in-depth write up about your professional history and your services that you offer so that other LinkedIn Members would get to know your services better and order you somehing directly. A professional looking picture of you is suggested. Don’t add some other pics like Taj Mahal or Twin towers. 

2. Create a LinkedIn Feeds The best part about LinkedIn is that it gives Individuals and Companies a chance to demonstrate their expertise by replying to questions in their field in LinkedIn answer Area. To grab the attention, answer in categories like your current employers or previous employers or your geographic location. To make it even more easier for you, you can create a RSS feed for your answers and use it with any of your Favourite RSS Feeder tools like Feedburner.

Read tips 3 - 5 and complete article