Wednesday, December 31, 2014

13 Lies People Tell In Interviews


People aren’t always the most truthful in interviews. When you really want to land the job, it can be easy to exaggerate, or stretch the truth a little bit. You’re in the hot seat and the pressure is on – you’re willing to do whatever it takes to beat out the other job candidates.

It’s natural, but it’s definitely not the best strategy.

Yet, it still happens. The thing is, though, interviewers can see right though it. They’ve heard them all.

Here are some of the more common lies that one might tell during an interview.

1. I’m a total people-person. Everyone loves me. I mean EVERYONE!

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(via giphy.com, via giphy.com)

2. I wasn’t fired, I quit that !@#$ place.

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(via giphy.com, via giphy.com)

3. The 2-hour commute each way won’t be an issue.

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(via giphy.com, via giphy.com)

Lies 4-13 and the complete Careerealism article

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

5 Steps To Grow Your LinkedIn Network In Just 15 Minutes A Week

Post Author: Mic Johnson

If you’re like most people on LinkedIn, one area you can improve on is increasing the number of quality connections you have. The good news is that if you follow the 5 simple steps I’ve outlined below for just 15 minutes a week, you will quickly grow your LinkedIn connections and develop a robust network you can be proud of!

The benefits of developing and nurturing a quality network can’t be overstated. Your network may help you if you’re in sales and want to leverage trusted relationships to get a foot in the door. It may help you find your next career. It may help you find a vendor to help you or your company. If you or your company start blogging, it also provides an audience to share your content with.

Growing your LinkedIn network with quality connections can do nothing but help you and your career. Completing these simple steps will make that a reality sooner rather than later.

1. Add A Recurring, Weekly 15 Minute Appointment To Your Calendar.

Go to your Outlook, Google or other electronic calendar and create a recurring weekly, 15 minute calendar appointment that says “Add LinkedIn Connections”. Schedule it on a day and time you will commit to each week.  Calendar appt


2. Log in to LinkedIn and go to “People You May Know”.

“People You May Know” appears in the upper right hand side of your LinkedIn home page.

People You May Know

Steps 3-5 and the complete BlueGurus article

Monday, December 29, 2014

6 Punctuation Tips For A Sexier Resume



You want a resume, cover letter, and LinkedIn profile that presents you in the best possible light. With all of the emphasis on loading your documents with keywords, accomplishments, and metrics that make the case for you being the perfect fit for the position you’re after, have you overlooked proper punctuation?

Some might wonder what the big deal is about punctuation. Surely if you start your sentences with a capital letter and end them with a period, that’s all you need to worry about, right? Unfortunately not.
The text in career documents is often so packed with information that seemingly inconsequential punctuation missteps can distort your meaning, or worse: cause the reviewer to pause in confusion. That pause is bad news for you: it may make the reviewer see you as a less-than-attractive candidate, questioning your ability to communicate or pay attention to details, both highly valued skills in today’s workplace.

Just as a modern spouse becomes more alluring to a partner by doing the dishes and laundry, using proper punctuation makes you downright sexy to a hiring manager. Both efforts make lives easier for the people who are important to you, so go the extra mile by following these important rules (and do the dishes):

1. Capitalization

In addition to appearing at the beginning of sentences and in section headings, capital letters also signify important words. But using too many “important words” in your documents slows the reader down or seems pretentious. For example, I sometimes see text like this in resumes: “Expertise in Human Resources, Training, and Recruiting” Try: “Expertise in human resources, training, recruiting” instead.

Other than proper names like your own name or the names of products, you will rarely need to capitalize words that don’t appear at the beginning of a line or sentence.
You’ll also want to capitalize your own job title above each position listed on your resume. However, if you reference someone else’s job title in your career documents, the general rule is that it is only capitalized when the person’s name follows (Vice President Joe Smith) – not when merely referring to the position (as in “reporting to the vice president”).

Of course, every rule tends to have its exceptions, and there are a few for capitalization. However, these are good to start with.

2. Hyphens

Use hyphens for compound adjectives that precede a noun, such as “client-focused approach” or “full-time employees.” And if you have two adjectives that modify the same base word, use a hyphen after the first, as in “mid- and senior-level management.” Do not use a hyphen in a compound adjective if the first word ends in –ly, as in “highly qualified candidate.”

3. Semicolons

Semicolons can either separate two independent clauses when the second clause is not directly related to the first, or they can be useful when you want to list items that already include a comma. For example, “Proficient in software including Microsoft Excel, Word, and PowerPoint; CorelDRAW; and Adobe Photoshop.”

Read 4-6 and the complete article

Thursday, December 18, 2014

10 Ways to Use LinkedIn to Boost Your Career

As far as I'm concerned, LinkedIn is the single greatest networking tool in the world - ever. The problem is, not everyone knows how to use it to their advantage. Of all the people I've talked to about LinkedIn, most acknowledge that they're a member but only a handful are actually getting value out of the networking website. Most signed up because a friend sent them an invite and haven't really given it a second thought since. The reality is, with more than 20 million business professionals on LinkedIn, you're missing out on countless business opportunities and the chance to build long-lasting relationships. Here are ten ways to get the ball rolling.

2. Increase Your Visibility Every minute LinkedIn is used a resource to find qualified people to hire or do business with. By adding the right keywords in your profile (such as the words someone would probably use to search for someone with your expertise) you're much more likely to appear at the top of search results. My LinkedIn profile is a good example of this (note all of the references to the areas of writing I specialize in): http://www.linkedin.com/in/logankugler 

3. Grow Your Network Fast Expanding the size of your network is a snap. Aside from being able to easily import your entire address book from most email clients and automatically view who is a LinkedIn member, you can search for other members by companies you used to work for, people you used to work with, and people who went to school with you. In order to use LinkedIn to its full potential, you should have at least 50 first degree connections. 

See all 10 ways and the complete TechCareers article

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Want More Job Interviews? Start Thinking Like a Recruiter

By

Wouldn’t it be great if you could guarantee you’d receive more calls from recruiters after you submit your resume? Well, you can. All you have to do is think like a recruiter.

Most recruiters receive tons of applications for every job opening. They look for any reason to reject an applicant for not being a good fit. Most of the early rounds of elimination have to do with the qualifications of the job. But the further your application gets, the more all applications look alike. Recruiters have to turn down qualified applicants in favor of those who stand out from the rest.


The applications that stand out are the ones that answer these three questions all recruiters ask. 

1. Why do you want this job?

Recruiters want to know what’s in it for you. Why you want a job tells a recruiter about your long-term goals and what you hope to gain with your employment. Are you looking for a job out of desperation? Or do you have a personal interest in this particular position and company?

Recruiters look for candidates who actually want to work for their company. They want to find an employee who will be excited and passionate both about the work and about long-term career opportunities. 

Make sure your cover letter and application give a solid reason for why you want this job. Is it because you have a great personal connection to the business? Maybe you love the company’s reputation. Maybe you know this job would be a great starting point for career development.


No matter what your reason, be genuine and make it clear to the recruiter you’re applying not just to pay the bills, but because you really want this job. You’ll automatically stand out from the others in the pile.

Questions 2,3, and the complete article

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

10 Tips For Giving Your LinkedIn Profile A Facelift

Maintaining your online presence is more important than ever. If you want to be taken seriously by employers, clients, and other professional contacts, you NEED to give your LinkedIn profile a facelift.

LinkedIn profile looking old and stale these days? Here are ten tips for giving your LinkedIn profile a much-needed facelift (no Botox required!):

4. Spice up your work experience by peppering in numbers.

Quantify, quantify, quantify! You want to quantify your experience whenever you can. People like to see numbers. They like to see results, not just tasks.
Here’s an example:
  • Managed team of 7 employees at CAREEREALISM Media
  • Managed monthly writing accounts for 20+ paid contributors
  • Selected, created, edited, optimized, scheduled, and published 30+ articles per week
  • Created, implemented, and managed 2+ major content initiatives annually, notable initiatives including the Happy Grad Project, which featured 35+ top career experts and acquired 4,500 new email subscribers within 30 days.
See how that conveys results? Try it with your own work experience!

9. Don’t forget about the Honors & Awards section!

Have you received any professional honors or awards? Showcase them! These are especially helpful if they relate to your major projects.
For example, if you received an award at your job for a great project, make sure you showcase both the project and the award on your LinkedIn profile. It helps back up your skills and expertise in that area.

See all 10 tips and the complete Careerealism article

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

5 Secrets of the Guy Who Gets Multiple Job Offers

By Jenny Foss

We’ve all got “that guy” in our lives. The guy who seems to achieve everything he sets out to, win far more often than he loses, and land multiple job offers—approximately 14 seconds after he divulges to you that he “might be looking soon.”

You want to hate him (seriously, you do), but you truly can’t. Why not?
Because he’s likable, inspiring and, well, the truth of the matter is—you would totally hire him, too.

So what the heck is his secret? How is he managing to find this quick success, with so many interesting players? While he may not ’fess up, I’m guessing these are some of the very strategies he’s employing:

1. He Nails Down the Target Job and Audience Before Searching

Unlike many job seekers, that guy isn’t plopping in front of the computer for two seconds of aimless searching until he’s done a little bit of soul searching.

What kind of job does he want? Where does he have the most career capital? What is the personality, size, management style, and industry focus of the company that seems most appealing to him? What about the commute, the salary, the perks, the people?

Job seekers who first construct a vision of what that next job does (and, in many cases, doesn’t) look like are the ones who are best equipped to craft a game plan (and a resume) that points them square at the type of job that best aligns with their capabilities and, importantly, their desires.

2. He Figures Out the Key Players, Then Gets on Their Radar

Once that guy hones in on a target job, guess what he does next? He makes a list of the people he should probably know—influential players at companies of interest, thought leaders, local business owners who work in this space, reporters who cover his field, association leaders in his town. You get the idea.


The most successful job seekers are not (repeat: are not) spending all of their search time mucking around on Craigslist; they’re figuring out who they need to know and figuring out ways to get on their radar. 

Secrets 3-5 and the complete "The Muse" article

Monday, December 1, 2014

19 Creative Ways To Build Your Target Company List For Your Job Search



As your job search consultant, I aim to provide you 19 creative ways to build your target company list, so you can find your own job leads. This way, you are taught how to fish and you are not be dependent on third party recruiters and job boards. Here, I expand on the target company list building examples I provided in my previous LinkedIn article (“How to Build A List of Target Companies” – Spring 2012), and outline additional, proven steps that you can use immediately. These tactics have been used to build target company lists for current job search practice clients and when I built a recruitment practice in my earlier career. Check out this list:

(1)     Create a Wish List of target companies where you have always wanted to work.

If you are going to conduct a job search, you might as well think BIG, right, and aim to work where you want to work? Think about what characteristics and accolades those target companies have that inspire you to want to work for them. When writing down those traits, use those ideas to spring board your thinking to come up with other target companies that seem to embody those same traits and philosophies.

(2)     Apply The CAVACtm Model to build your Target Company List.

What is the CAVAC™ Model? The CAVAC™ Model is a methodical, hub-and-spoke thought process that helps the job seeker create a stream of new ideas pertaining to potential companies where they may find their next position. The C’s are the company’s clients and competitors. The V is vendors. And the A’s are associations and affiliate companies that compliment the target company’s business.

For each company on your initial Wish List, place the employer or target company name in the middle of the diagram below. Then write out the clients, associations, affiliates, competitors and clients that come to mind and from your research to expand your list. Each company listed can be a possible entry on your developed target list.  I will use one of my previous employers as an example, as if I was looking for a new position.
THE CAVAC™ MODEL
Build your target list: CAVAC Model - Target List Building Strategy

(3)     Expand your list.


Now for each company in the CAVAC™ sections, take a blank CAVAC template and one of the companies from the outer circles into the center. For instance, put Bullhorn, the Applicant Tracking System Vendor, into the center as a Target Company, and research, who are the competitors, associations, vendors, affiliates and clients of this organization. This exercise can go on and on, ensuring you are never short on Target Companies.

Ways 4-19 and the complete article

Thursday, November 20, 2014

3 Things Your LinkedIn Summary MUST Say



Your LinkedIn summary is 2,000 characters of prime real estate to genuinely differentiate yourself among the three million member online community.

1) Make it personal.

Before you even get to the details of the work, show yourself to be a human being interested in a genuine human connection. The interviewer is not a criminal investigator, and you are not sitting under the hot police lights. It’s not an adversarial relationship, but a collaborative one. The interviewer is looking to support and advance his organization’s goals, and so are you – that’s what you have in common.

Find additional areas of mutual interest by researching the person interviewing you. Nearly everyone has an online presence in social media. Perhaps you’ll come across a personal blog and discover you share a hobby or pastime. Another possibility is uncovering the interviewer’s whitepapers and articles about the future direction of the company or the industry at large.

2) “Extra! Extra! Read all about it!”

The days of the printed newspaper are (almost) over. However, the concept still holds true: find out news about the company and weave that into your interview. This strategy is far superior to looking at the company’s website, which likely doesn’t keep up with the news. Furthermore, most of your competitors are merely relying on the “about us” and “company history” pages.

Search Google news to see what the business is working on, about to launch, or just delivered that won industry recognition. In the interview, use what you’ve discovered to speak to the company’s pain points and hot buttons. Align your particular brand of skills and expertise with the priorities in the organization right now.

3) Be the man (or woman) with a plan. - Read How to Be The Man / Woman and the complete Careerealism article

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

How to get the most out of your LinkedIn recommendations

The use of technology has changed not only the way we do business, but also the job-search process. Today, many job seekers are foregoing formal letters of recommendation and instead are asking for recommendations they can include on their LinkedIn profile.

Before you begin soliciting LinkedIn recommendations, take a deep breath and get strategic in your efforts. What’s important to recruiters and hiring managers isn’t the number of recommendations, it’s the quality that counts. For example, one of my clients was excited to show me that she had obtained a recommendation on her LinkedIn profile:

Recommendation (co-worker): “Brittany is fabulous and I really enjoyed working with her at ABC Company.”

The problem? The recommendation was too short and didn’t include specific information that would be helpful to a recruiter or hiring manager. The best way to get high-quality LinkedIn recommendations is to treat them similarly to obtaining formal recommendation letters:

7 Ways To Pump Up Your Resume



Hiring managers sometimes have to read over hundreds of resumes each day. They all start looking the same, as you can imagine. What does it take to write a strong, compelling resume that will catch their attention? Pump up your resume to make sure you’re considered for the position you want.

That’s the prize-winning question! Because hiring managers, recruiters, or HR assistants are individuals, they have different things they find appealing. What works for one, might not work for the next. But, there are some universal qualities that comprise a “good” resume that will appeal to the vast majority.

And, that’s what you’re shooting for. Something that gives your resume a better chance of getting read than the other resumes that are putting these poor folks to sleep. You want to improve the statistical probability that your resume will be selected for an interview.

Here are some safe bets for turning your light-weight resume into a heavy-weight contender. Nothing crazy here, folks, because you don’t want to stand out in a bad way! (Imagine your resume being passed around to other recruiters for them to giggle at.) For the right kind of attention, try these ways of pumping up your resume.

1. Avoid Using A Template

According to The Undercover Recruiter: “Using a template will never make you stand out and chances are your application will be cut short due to your resume being the same as every other job seeker’s.”

Your resume should have a unique design. But, what if you’re not a Microsoft Word wiz? Look on Youtube for lots of formatting how-to videos and tips.


4. Emphasize Your Personal Brand

Write about your personal brand strengths throughout your resume. Check out this article if you’d like to know more about personal branding. Here are some ways to get ideas for yours:
  • Ask others what they value in you and how you work.
  • Look for accomplishments on old performance evaluations.
  • Consider assessments to gain a deeper understanding of ways you can describe your strengths.

7. Put Your Best First

To really knock out your competition, don’t save the best for last! Front load each bullet point, putting the biggest part of the success first. Like this example:

Before:
Navigated intense challenges of recruitment to onboard astounding 17 director-level and researcher recruits.
After:
Brought onboard unprecedented 17 director-level and researcher recruits, navigating intense recruiting challenges.

You can also frontload your document with your biggest accomplishments in the summary. Don’t wait to hook them with your greatness! Put it out there right from the start.

Employers want to know what sets you apart! Why should they hire YOU? If your resume lands you an interview, but there’s another candidate you’re sparring in the ring with, it could be your amazingly strong resume that puts you over the edge and wins you the job.

That’s the sweet science of pumping up your resume. Now, go get ‘em, tiger!


Read all 7 ways and the complete Careerealism article

Monday, November 17, 2014

3 Strategies to Leverage the Value of Twitter in a job search

If these clients would tap into the research they’ve done on the companies they're targeting, they could reap plenty of benefits from Twitter in just 10 to 15 minutes, a few days a week, especially because the majority of job seekers aren’t doing anything with Twitter.


1. Stay Focused on Your Job Search and Your Personal Brand

Don't start or engage in conversations not related to your job search. No one really needs to know what you had for breakfast or what movie you saw last night.

Keep the majority of your tweets relevant to your personal brand, industry, areas of expertise, and value to your target companies. That doesn’t mean you can’t tweet off-topics and humorous tidbits, when you have extra time.


2. Do a Lot of Retweeting

Simply the act of tweeting again a tweet that someone else has tweeted, retweeting (abbreviated as "RT") is one of my favorite ways to use Twitter and one of the best ways to save time there.
Even if you do nothing else on Twitter, posting relevant retweets can be a powerful way to build brand evangelism, a quality Twitter following, and get on the radar and stay top-of-mind with people you want to notice you.

First, gather up a long list of the right people to retweet. Who are these people? Colleagues, industry thought leaders and subject matter experts, top-level executives (or hiring decision makers) at your target companies, and executive recruiters in your niche, to name a few.

Search for them on Twitter, follow them, and start retweeting them. It’s as easy as that!

It’s critical to include in your retweet the @username of the person who originated the tweet, because they’ll see the retweet on their "Notifications" page. Chances are you’ll get noticed, if enough of your retweets show up there for each person you’re retweeting. If a good retweet doesn’t mention the original author, take the time to track them down and include their @username.

Retweeting Strategies to Help You Get Noticed

See the strategies + Step 3 + the complete article

Monday, November 10, 2014

10 Places To Promote Your LinkedIn Profile



Think of your LinkedIn profile as the hub of your online identity. All of your online content should lead to your profile, and your profile’s purpose is to guide readers to call you or request your resume.

When you think of your LinkedIn profile this way, you’ll see why it’s critical to secure a custom URL for yours if you don’t already have one. You can achieve this at no cost by logging in to LinkedIn and navigating to Settings > Edit Public Profile > Create Custom URL.

Once you have a custom LinkedIn URL, what do you do with it? How can you share it with others to help drive traffic to your profile and interest to your resume?


1. Your Email Signature File

Arguably the most important place to include your LinkedIn URL is in the signature file of your email host. This feature can be accessed from your email system’s settings page. Note that I’m speaking of your dedicated job search and career management email address here, not your employer, business, or personal email account.
  • The simplest email signature is your name, of course, but if you’re using this email for job search and career management purposes it really should contain more information such as:
    • A title or positioning statement
    • A tagline or power statement
    • Your personal contact information
    • Your LinkedIn URL along with links to other key social networking sites.
    • A link to your blog or Twitter stream, if pertinent and appropriate.
    • You may wish to consider including a photo.
  • A great app to use to create a good-looking email signature is Wisestamp.

2. Your Bio Or Marketing Brief

Because resumes are highly specific and focused tools these days and are generally highlighting your qualifications for a specific role rather than a range of possible positions, they aren’t effective networking documents anymore. Bios or marketing briefs are better suited for networking purposes (a bio presents a third-person narrative description of your brand and career story, while a marketing brief provides a richer array of information about your candidacy, impacts, and goals). Most job seekers will need one or the other, not necessarily both.
  • Since the task of either of these documents is to lead the reader to learn more about you, it’s appropriate to include your LinkedIn profile URL. It can be embedded as a link or listed in full address form.
  • You can also insert a QR code leading to your profile.

3. Your Business Card

Depending on your job search geographic targets, you may or may not need to do local or regional face-to-face networking as part of your search. If you are, consider making or securing a business card not affiliated with your current or most recent employer.
  • Use a positioning title that echoes the one used in your LinkedIn profile headline.
  • Include all of your contact information along with URLs to social networking profiles, including LinkedIn.
  • You can use a QR code which leads readers to your LinkedIn profile if you like, though I would also recommend listing your URL in non-QR code form as well, since many folks do not have a QR reader or functionality.
  • Don’t forget to highlight your core competencies and career brand on your business card as well.
    Places 4-10 and the complete Careerealism article

    Friday, October 31, 2014

    8 Scariest Comments Your Boss Can Make

    8:  "We need to talk."
    "We need to talk" is the most frightening phrase in all the world. It doesn't matter if you hear it from your partner or spouse or your boss. If you hear it from your boss there are only two outcomes: You are being fired or you are being given more work that you don't have time to do. Derivations include: "Can you step into my office?" and "Close the door behind you."

    7:  "I need an update on the project."
    Translation: Someone above your boss wants to know what is going on with your project. He or she is anxious for reasons that are either: a) so obvious, you were already working 80-hour weeks to finish it, or b) so opaque that you will now spend 80 hours per week finishing the project that no one wanted in the first place. If it's a client, you can bet the finished project will sit on a shelf three months after you finish it anyway. Derivations include: "The client has new parameters," and "Drop everything, Friday afternoon is a great time for a fire drill."

    6:  "That was fine."
    If your boss's response to "Did you get that thing I worked all night on?" is "That was fine," one of two things is true: a) It wasn't fine and the boss is going to fix it behind your back, or b) it wasn't important to begin with. Either way, you're in trouble. This is the ultimate "meh." And your career is now meh, too. Derivations include: "I submitted your annual review. Sign it when you get a chance. No we don't need to talk about it."

    Wednesday, October 29, 2014

    How to answer, “What’s your greatest weakness?” during a job interview

    Amanda Augustine


    This dreaded, seemingly trick question will no longer be difficult to answer in job interviews.
    Most job candidates are familiar with the “What’s your biggest weakness?” interview question, but few feel equipped to answer the it with confidence.

    The next time you’re asked the stress-inducing question in an interview, use these tips to provide a powerful response. 


    Avoid faux weaknesses.

    Recruiters and employers don’t want to hear that you’re a perfectionist or any of those other faux weaknesses that can be turned into strengths. They actually want to know about an area you’ve struggled with, and most importantly, what you’ve done to overcome that limitation. Steer clear of the “positive” weaknesses and stick to sharing something that’s genuine.


    Choose something work-related.

    This is not the time to discuss your fear of commitment or that you get awful road rage during rush hour. Focus on an area that’s relevant to your professional life. For example, perhaps you struggled with multi-tasking earlier in your career but have become a master at it in recent years.


    Don’t mention essential skills.

    Remember, the goal is to share a shortcoming that you’ve already taken steps to improve. This demonstrates to the hiring manager that you’re not only self-aware, but you’re dedicated to self-improvement.  If your greatest weakness is a critical requirement for the job and you’re still struggling in this area, then you may want to reconsider whether it’s the right role for you.


    Use the STAR method to explain.  - See how to explain and the complete The Ladders article

    Wednesday, October 15, 2014

    How to Connect With Recruiters on LinkedIn



    Whether you're looking for a job or just want to keep your options open, connecting with recruiters on LinkedIn can help maximize your networking opportunities. Here's how to approach recruiters to improve your chances of landing your dream job, today or down the road.

    How to Find Recruiters:

    1. Use LinkedIn's Advanced People Search to find recruiters in your field. In the keywords section, type in your field of interest and "recruiter." For example, searching for "accounting recruiter" would result in a list of all recruiters who are currently working or have worked in the past with accounting. The next step is to check their profile, so as to be sure they still are in the field you are interested in and to connect with them.


    2. Since not all recruiters are interested in networking (which could seem strange, but is still true, especially if they work for niche organizations or have moved on to different roles), another way to approach recruiters more confidently is to search by adding the acronym "LION" in the last name section of the advanced search discussed above. LION stands for LinkedIn Open Networker. This allows you to search for people who've expressed an interest in connecting, so chances of them accepting your invite are higher. 

    Tips 3-4 and How to Connect with Recruiters

    Monday, October 13, 2014

    How to answer "why did you leave your last job?" In a job interview


    Hiring somebody is a huge and risky investment. Against the risks and the recruitment and ongoing costs -  wages, training, expenses and recruitment agency fees - is the aim and the hope that you will be worth the time and the money and be good enough and hang around long enough to be worth the hassle for more than a few weeks.

    Sensible investors and sensible employers do their homework - their due diligence. They want a return on their investment long term. An employer would be daft if they didn’t want to know as much as possible about you before offering you a contract.

    This is why the question about why you left your last job is a popular one. You shouldn't fear it - you should expect it, prepare for it and welcome it.


    Here are some ideas about how to answer "Why did you leave your last job?":

    Be open and honest
    Whatever the reason you left your previous job, be honest about it. These are the sort of details that potential employers easily find out when checking references. Do not miss your job opportunity because of an unpleasant surprise or a “small lie” or because of an omission. If you left your last job under less than preferable circumstances portray it in a positive light - explaining how you have learnt from it. If you were fired, it is obviously more difficult than if you were made redundant - but preparing for the question can fix this.

    More tips and the complete City A.M. article

    Thursday, October 9, 2014

    You Know LinkedIn - Meet The Next Wave Of Startups Trying To Hack Your Job Search

    Aaron Taube

    In the past several years, mobile technology has simplified a wide range of the cumbersome, time-consuming, and unpleasant chores required of the professional class.

    There's Homejoy to clean your apartment, Uber and Lyft to hail a cab, and more food delivery apps than you can count.

    But for all of the solutions created to improve the lifestyles of affluent urbanites, finding a job - the initial step that makes such a lifestyle possible - remains a lengthy and universally miserable process.

    Sure, massive job boards like Monster and CareerBuilder alert us to an unprecedented number of potential openings - but who wants to give up hours of their precious leisure time crafting the perfect cover letter, only to submit the application into the internet equivalent of a black hole?

    And while LinkedIn makes countless powerful people available for networking, the site is not perfect, especially for those who don't have the time or the moxie to take advantage of it.

    The result is that many would-be job seekers, lots of them talented and capable, choose not to bother until their current jobs become too bleak to bear.

    Or at least that is what they have done until now.

    In the past year, a new crop of apps has sprung up with the goal of hacking the job search for a new generation of professionals - one that is constantly on the lookout for the next opportunity and never very far from a mobile phone.

    "We're trying to liberate passive job seekers," says Yarden Tadmor, founder and CEO of the New York City job-hunting app Switch. "Eventually, what we're trying to create is an environment that connects people with companies and hiring managers."

    Switch, which went live this past summer, was inspired by Tadmor's experience hiring for teams at several media technology companies, including the content recommendation engine Taboola.

    Read the full article to find out what the hot new apps are.

    Monday, October 6, 2014

    11 Questions You Should Ask At The End Of Every Job Interview



    It's important to remember that every interview is a two-way street. You should be interviewing the employer just as much as they're interviewing you because you both need to walk away convinced that the job would be a great fit.

    So, when the tables are turned and the interview asks, "Do you have any questions for me?" take advantage of this opportunity. It's the best way to determine if you'd be happy working for this employer, and whether your goals are aligned with theirs. 

    "The very process of asking questions completely changes the dynamic of the interview and the hiring manager's perception of you," says Teri Hockett, chief executive of What's For Work?, a career site for women. "Asking questions also gives you the opportunity to discover details that you might not have otherwise unveiled."

    Amy Hoover, president of TalentZoo, says there's another reason you should always prepare questions. "It's expected — and if you don't ask at least two questions, you will appear disinterested, or worse, less intelligent and engaged than a prospective employer would like." You should have at least four questions prepared, though, in case your original two are answered through the course of the interview.

    But, Hoover says, don't just ask questions for the sake of it. To actually benefit from them, you'll need to think carefully about what you want to ask.

    "Your questions can, in fact, make or break an interview," she explains. "If they're not thoughtful, or if you ask something that has already been addressed, this can hurt you way more than it can help. Asking smart, engaging questions is imperative."

    Here are 11 questions you should always ask in a job interview, if they weren't already answered, to help you get a better sense of the role and the company, and to help you prepare for the next steps:
    • Who do you think would be the ideal candidate for this position, and how do I compare?
    • Who held this position previously? Why is he/she leaving the role?
    • What do you like most about working for this company?


    Friday, September 26, 2014

    7 LinkedIn Job Hunting Tactics That Work

    by Chad Brooks

     Landing a new job requires a lot more than just finding openings and applying to them.

    To help job seekers get hired as quickly as possible, LinkedIn analyzed a group of more than 4,000 "super" job seekers, defined as LinkedIn members who viewed a job at a particular company and then joined that company within three months. The study examined what those successful job seekers were doing on LinkedIn during those three months of job hunting. Here are seven tips gleaned from the study:


    • Add new skills to your profile. Add relevant skills to your profile so recruiters looking for candidates with your background can find you. More than 90 percent of the people who found a job within three months had five or more skills listed on their profile.

    • Follow the companies you're interested in. Stay up-to-date on the latest news, participate in conversations and learn about new job opportunities. Among the people who found jobs in three months or less, 91 percent used LinkedIn company pages for research.

    • Add a professional profile photo. Adding a photo puts a face to a name and helps portray a friendly and approachable image. Nearly 90 percent of the people who were hired in three months or less had a profile photo.

    Thursday, September 25, 2014

    3 Ways to make yourself more employable by using Pinterest

    Pinterest is a unique form of social media site which allows users to ‘pin’ almost anything from the web to a number of customised boards. These boards are then visible to friends found through the site and individual posts can be liked, commented on or reposted. Pinterest has simply soared in popularity this year. In its early stages, it has grown more quickly than web giants such as Facebook and Twitter but how can this new online phenomenon help find you a job?

    1)  • Spend time on your account and make sure it reflects the attributes and goals which you have. Like any social media site, Pinterest is heavily time centric and the amount of time people spend on your account will heavily influence their overall opinion of it. Make sure you give your account the dedication it deserves and never be tempted to rush your collections as your haste will be reflected in your work, reducing its quality.

    See all 3 plus the full TheUnderCoverRecruiter article

    Tuesday, September 23, 2014

    Lessons learned from my last 1,200 job rejections

    By Scott Ginsberg

    I believe in building a brand from the inside out. Creating a high enough volume of daily output that the market targets you. Allowing new opportunities to find you through the attraction of working, not the agony of waiting.

    That’s how I’ve successfully run my business for the past fifteen years.

    But as an experiment, as a way of testing my own system, I recently spent a summer doing the exact opposite. Filling out job applications, responding to proposals, going on interviews, meeting with recruiters, submitting my portfolio for freelance gigs and seeking out new work opportunities.

    By the end of the summer, I had been rejected over twelve hundred times.

    Twelve hundred times.

    And despite my best efforts, not a single one of those opportunities came to fruition. But as disappointing as the process was, I learned key lessons about career management. Next time you get rejected from a job application, remember these tenants:

    1. Don’t spend too much time crossing your fingers.

    Waiting around for some invisible jury to stamp your creative passport and tell you that your work is okay is no way to live your life. It creates negative momentum. Each one of those twelve hundred rejections, while only marginally painful in isolation, added up pretty quickly. And by the end of the summer, I was starting to get disillusioned. I knew that the hour I spent each day looking for work would have been better invested creating, instead of waiting around for people to give me the opportunity to show them how creative I was. So I stopped. I ended the experiment and went back to doing what I do best. Making things. And literally within a week, I booked two new clients and a major network television interview. Are you crossing your fingers or using them to create your art?

    More lessons learned and the complete TheLadders article

    Monday, September 22, 2014

    6 Unspoken Requirements For Every Job Seeker



    3. Proof of performance

    In the not-so-distant past, the only proof a candidate needed was a resume or CV and a list of references “available upon request.” In the interview, very few positions required a portfolio presentation. Today, evidence of excellence comes in many additional forms – including whitepapers, articles, presentations, and blog posts. The good news is that showcasing this proof is quite easy. One great example is a recent enhancement to LinkedIn’s Summary and Experience section. Members can now embed a variety of media that not only make their profile more interesting but also provide proof of expertise and performance.

    4. A brand identity system

    If you think brand identity systems are just for giant corporations like IBM or Google, it’s time to modernize your mindset. Today, each one of us is a brand, and we have the same need for brand standards. Your brand identity system ties together your resume and cover letter, email signature, LinkedIn profile and online social profiles – making it all look like it is coming from the same person.  In much the same way Target uses their red bull’s eye in signage, ads and online banners, you need to develop and consistently use a personal brand identity system. Color is the most important element – so choose a brand color that exudes your personality. Here’s an article that will help you identify the best color for you. Read it, then add your brand color to your resume, cover letters and thank-you notes, email signature, LinkedIn background, personal web site or Blog, and all other visible components.

    See all six requirements and the complete Forbes article

    Wednesday, September 17, 2014

    15 Job Interview Thank You Note Tips

    by Brittney Helmrich

     It may seem like a simple formality, but sending a thank-you note after a job interview can mean the difference between getting the job and going back to square one.

    "I can tell you that only about 20 percent of the candidates send one — and it really brings those candidates to the top of the pile," said Lori Kleiman, a human resources consultant.


    But thank-you notes are more than just a polite way to let your interviewer know you appreciate his or her time. If you write your thank-you note the right way, you can use it to reiterate why you're the best fit for the job. In your thank-you note, you can answer questions your interviewer asked that you think you didn't address adequately, make a personal connection with the interviewer, and more. 

    And even if you don't get the job this time, sending a thank-you note means that you keep doors open for the future. [After the Interview: Sample Thank You Letters ]

    "Remember that this may go into your personnel file at the employer, and that even if you are not the first choice for the position, you may get a call about a similar position or if the first choice does not work out," said Linda Carlson, author and owner of small business consulting company Barrett Street Productions.


    So how do you write the perfect thank-you note? Follow these 15 expert tips for making sure your thank-you note is successful in every situation.

    Tailor it to the company's culture
    "Consider the individual interviewer and the company culture before sending your messages. A more traditional organization may prefer a handwritten letter, while a technology start-up may expect an email immediately." – Amanda Augustine, job search expert, TheLadders

    Make it personal
    "Mention something that the interviewer spoke about personally that was important to them (fishing, golf, kids, etc.) and possibly some of the business initiatives that they brought up. It makes the note more meaningful." – Seth Deitchman, former career coach and financial adviser, The Mercury Group at Morgan Stanley

    Show your value
    "Don't just thank your interviewer for the time they spent. Provide additional value by giving more details about why the employer should hire you. Be sure you use specific examples [of how] your past performance [makes you a] great candidate for this new job." – Scott Vedder, author, "Signs of a Great Resume"(CreateSpace, July 2012)

    See all 15 tips and the complete BusinessNewsDaily article

    Tuesday, September 16, 2014

    10 Job Seeker Fails and the correct actions to take

    You will face many situations as you search for your next job, and as you'll see below, one of the worst things you can do is opt out of opportunities. Here are 10 newbie mistakes you should avoid:

    1. You don’t get enough information about a networking contact before reaching out. You would probably feel more comfortable and confident reaching out to a referral contact if you knew something about them. Your success in securing a meeting with someone you don’t know will improve if your request explains why you want to meet.

    The better option: When you receive the name of a referral or someone you should speak with, ask why. Find out how long your contact has known this person, in what context, and why it would be mutually beneficial. 

    8. You forget to ask the time frame for making the hiring decision. If you don’t know what the next steps in the hiring process are and what the company timeline is for filling the job, how will you know when to follow up? Emergencies, vacations and budgets can cause timelines to slip, so don’t assume no news is bad news.

    The better option: Immediately contact the person you interviewed with, preferably via phone, and ask about the process and time frame. Also ask if it would be OK for you to follow up if you haven’t heard from the interviewer within that timeline. 

    10. You insist on making the same salary you made at your last job. Many factors impact your value in the workplace – only one of which is your previous salary. Turning down an interview or job offer based solely on salary could send the message that you are inflexible.

    The better option: Do a thorough evaluation of what the salary ranges are for the types of jobs you are interested in. This means speaking to peers, recruiters and using online salary calculators.

    See all 10 Fails and the complete USNews article

    Hannah Morgan is a speaker and author providing no-nonsense career guidance; keep up with the latest job search trends and social networking strategies by reading her blog Career Sherpa and following her on Twitter @careersherpa and Google+.

    Monday, September 15, 2014

    10 Questions You Should NEVER Ask in a Job Interview

    by Glassdoor

    You’ve spent the last 45 minutes sitting in a job interview; the hiring manager is about to wrap up. And right then, the hiring manager asks:

    “Do you have any questions for me?”

    You were prepared. But you lock up! In an effort to think on your feet, you blurt out, “How much does this position pay?” Once you see the expression on the hiring manager’s face, you know: you messed up.


    The only thing worse than not having questions prepared for your job interview… is asking the wrong questions. Here are 10 of the worst:

    4. “Do You Perform Background Checks?”

    When you apply for a job, it should be a given that the employer will perform a background check. In fact, 69 percent of employers perform background checks on all job candidates.

    10. “I Don’t Have Any Questions For You.”

    Whatever you do during an interview, don’t tell the interviewer you don’t have any questions. Every hiring manager expects candidates to have at least one question to ask at the end of the interview. If you don’t, the recruiter is only thinking one thing: “Next!”

    1. “Can You Tell Me More About Your Company?”

    Before any interview, the first thing you must do is research the company. If you ask this question, the hiring manager will think you didn’t do your homework before the interview.


    See all 10 questions and the complete article



    Thursday, September 11, 2014

    Creative Ways to Use LinkedIn in Your Job Search

    Part one:  Look into Career Paths, Research People and Follow Companies

    Are you guilty of logging in to LinkedIn to just look at people’s profile pictures, check out the latest updates and browse? Not to worry, you are not alone. In my experience in career consulting many people tell me they have LinkedIn accounts but have no idea what to do on the site.  People tend to grossly underestimate the value of actively engaging on LinkedIn. Most use LinkedIn to search for jobs and network with others. I advise all my clients, if they are in the job market, to log on to LinkedIn several times a week, if not daily. With millions of users LinkedIn is an awesome place to gain information about career paths, skill sets and industry news!

    How to discover career paths:
    To learn about career paths on LinkedIn
    • Search your connections for people who are doing what you aspire to do and review their profiles.
    • Read their profile in reverse to determine what they did prior to their current job. This will help you see how they attained their current position.
    • Make note of what qualifications they have, the keywords used in their profile and what types of activities they’ve been involved with.
    While everyone’s career path will be different, use this approach to gather ideas for new ways to find the job you seek.

    If you do not have any connections with people who hold positions which you aspire to, search for new connections in relevant industry specific groups. LinkedIn has a fantastic “groups feature” which provides a place for industry professionals or people with similar interests to discuss business, share content, ask/ answer each other’s questions and sometimes post jobs. If you join the right groups, you could learn about industry trends, and have current information about the industry for which you are interviewing. This will aid you in arriving to your interview prepared to discuss the work and ask good questions.

    Research People and Follow Companies:
    Another best practice for using LinkedIn while job searching is to follow companies which you plan to (or desire to) interview with to research the company. This is a strategy I have personally employed, here’s why:
    • Companies will often share different information on their LinkedIn Company page than what is presented on their website.
    • You can also see their current and former employees and read company status updates.
    • Prior to the interview, find out whom you’re interviewing with
      • review their profile on LinkedIn
    Most people go to interviews with no information about who they will be meeting; while the prospective employer has read your resume and likely Googled you. With the access that LinkedIn provides, this should no longer be the case. Go into the interview armed with a little knowledge about what led your interviewer to their current position.  You may even have a few shared connections!  Use the information you find about your interviewer to “break the ice”.  Should you make it to the second or third round of interviews this will prove to be helpful as you will be introduced to more people at-varied levels within the company. If possible, make a habit of finding out who you will be speaking with and get to know each person that will interview you.

    LinkedIn is an invaluable tool that could be used to give you leverage as you job search, network or consider learning a new skill or career.  When using the site, think of it as a free career counselor with endless information, right at your fingertips!


    Part Two: Learn Skills and Read the News  - Read about Part Two and the complete Simply Hired article

    Tuesday, September 9, 2014

    Avoid These 12 Classic (and Costly) Job Interview Mistakes

    by Undergrad Success

    So much work just to get the job interview, let alone the job. The research, the resume writing, the applications, the networking, the follow-up…

    And then some job seekers throw it all away by making these common, and completely avoidable, mistakes:

    1. You Dress Inappropriately


    This can work both ways—dressed up too much and dressed down too much; both can be avoided. The HR department is most often willing to communicate any employee dress codes, but if not, visit the organization and watch employees come and go to see their choice of attire.


    4. You’re Desperate—and They Can Tell

    Honestly, this goes back to the fact you’ve applied for hundreds of jobs and you really need this one. Understandable. It’s okay to be excited. Just be conscious of your emotions and focus on staying calm.


    6. You Badmouth a Previous Employer

    Please. Don’t. Do. This. Negative attitudes attract no one. Be diplomatic in your responses to questions regarding prior employment, especially in situations, which may have ended poorly. “I’m interested in starting a new chapter” and “I’m looking for a different set of work challenges” work well as answers. Keep it simple. Keep it positive.

    See all 12 mistakes and the complete article


    Thursday, September 4, 2014

    The World's Best Tips for Rocking Your LinkedIn Job Search

    By Scott Dockweiler

    We've said it before and we'll say it again—a LinkedIn profile is up there with a resume and cover letter in job search must-haves for our day and age.

    But while making a profile is a great first step, it won't do you much good in your job search unless you know how to leverage it. So this week, we've scoured the web for some of the best advice on maximizing LinkedIn's potential to land you a job.



    • To start, read up on these 12 helpful ideas for getting more out of LinkedIn(12 Most)


    • Understand the tactics recruiters use on LinkedIn in order to plan out your strategy. (U.S. News)


    • Learn which type of profile photo works best to attract recruiters(LinkedIn Talent Blog)

    • 5 more tips / resources and the complete TheMuse article
    • Wednesday, September 3, 2014

      5 Things Every Employer Wants To Hear In An Interview



      Ever wonder what a potential boss wants to hear in an interview? What exactly can you say that will increase your chances of receiving a job offer? I recently heard some great advice that lined up with my previous experience as a human resources manager, and so I thought I would share this great advice with you! Here are five things to communicate during an interview that will convince the employer you’re a great hire.

      1. You Will Never Have To Tell Me What To Do Twice

      Every employer wants to know they can give you instructions once—and you’ll get the job done. I guarantee you that no employer wants to micromanage or ask an employee more than once to do something—no matter what it is.

      4. I Am Easy To Correct And Instruct—I Am Teachable

      If there is something that’s not getting done, or if you’re not doing it correctly, the employer wants to know that they can approach you to discuss the situation and that you’re not going to fly off the handle or think you’re superior.

      Read all 5 things and the complete Careerealism article