No Experience? No Problem!

No Experience? No Problem!

Five Keys to Breaking in to a New Career

There is a lot of talk about transferable skills – taking skills and knowledge from one profession or industry and transferring them to a new career. This makes sense and is an essential survival technique when you come from an industry or a profession that has been deeply impacted by downsizing and you realize the jobs might be gone forever. But when the job market is tight, what chance do you have when an employer may have plenty of applicants with exact industry and job experience? What do you do if you are an outsider?

Read More

Networking? Make Them G.L.A.D. They Met You!

Networking? Make Them G.L.A.D. They Met You!

“Always make a great first impression.” I hate job search advice like this. What is that supposed to mean? A firm handshake? Shined shoes? A winning smile? Sure, interviewers will form early opinions of job applicants based on limited information in the first few minutes, but honestly… it’s the final and lasting impression that really counts.

And it is not just job interviews where this counts. Networking interviews – the one essential technique that will uncover the next job opportunity before the hoards of other job seekers – demand a lasting impression.  Don’t make the fatal mistake of treating networking interviews as job interviews “lite” or as a stepping stone to the next person. Treat every networking meeting as an opportunity to build a net of people who will care enough about you that when they hear of an opportunity they will make the effort to pick up the phone or drop you a note. Recruit them to become a permanent member of your job search network. And you do this by making them G.L.A.D. they met you.

Read More

Degree-less and Doomed???

Degree-less and Doomed???

Degree-less and Doomed???  You have got to be kidding.

I am all for a college degree. In fact I have a couple degrees myself. But for many people, getting the college degree didn’t happen either by plan or by circumstances. Despite this they have built a good career holding the types of professional jobs despite the fact most their peers in similar positions are required to have degrees.

How does this happen?

Simple actually. These degree-less people happened to join the right company and because they were smart and capable and learned quickly, they were promoted to higher level positions.

Read More

The Illogical Game of Hide and Seek Jobs

The Illogical Game of Hide and Seek Jobs

It seems only logical that if an employer wants to hire someone for a job that they would naturally advertise or at least post the position on their company website. Why not cast as broad a net as possible to get the pick of the best?

After all, advertising a job on a number of job boards is pretty cheap as a percentage of your typical professional wage. Plus, the investment in every employee after hiring someone costs even more.

If an employer adds up the hours of training, company resources and the time it takes to ramp up a new employee to be a consistent productive performer you would think a little up-front investment to get the right person would pay off. It would make sense then, to choose from a large pool of candidates to have a better chance of getting it right. Right?

Read More

Find the Job You Like Through People You Like.

Find the Job You Like Through People You Like.

When looking for a job we like and a successful career, we usually think about our skills, knowledge and motivation. I guess this makes sense. After all, jobs are about what we do. Work is the application of skills and knowledge.

It makes sense then to look for organizations that need your type of knowledge and skills. Locate them and you will be well on your way to finding a job. Who needs people other than as a method to get to your job via networking?

When thinking about what jobs and careers are best for us, we can get side-tracked when we restrict ourselves to an exploration of skills and knowledge. We miss the importance of people and the nature of our work relationships. People can be our true compass to finding the right job for us. Think of people

Read More

Are You to Old to Hire?

Are You to Old to Hire?

Job seekers – all job seekers – have, or at least believe they have, some vulnerability that they feel gets in the way of their ability to get hired. Under qualified, over qualified, too old, too young, too ugly, too pretty, wrong color, wrong name, wrong town – the list goes on. And when the market gets a bit tighter, and searches get longer, a vulnerability feels like it will crush their job search.

The approach I have found works best is a bit different depending on the situation, but it works pretty well:

Understand that bias is at play for all candidates for any job. Yours might be age, for others it is lack of experience. Just understand what yours is and have a strategy to overcome it – in resumes and interviews.

Read More