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You only have so many hours in the day. You’ve got to sleep, eat, and walk the dog. Get the kids to soccer, spend time with friends, maybe get to the gym. So how do you plan time to land your dream job?

Most of my clients come to me after trying the “All I need is a chance to get in front of a hiring manager, then I will wing it” plan. What they write down, if anything, are generic notes related to positions they have seen on Monster or Indeed. And they generally have only taken about 60 seconds before deciding they must apply to positions they see. This job search plan has less than a 2% chance of success.

Taking the ideas you have for your job search and writing them down markedly increases your chances of success in landing your new job. It does several other things:

  • Instead of an idea (which, when not written down is more of a dream or a wish), it gives you a clear framework for your focus.
  • It gives you permission to take care of yourself as part of your plan.
  • It reduces the guilt you might feel if you are with the family and not job hunting, or the equally uncomfortable guilt of spending all your time job hunting at the expense of your family and your own health.

If you are unemployed, you could budget up to 50 hours a week to finding a new job. If you are under-employed or currently employed, you may only have 10 to 15 hours a week to devote to your job hunt. So, the question becomes, how will you spend that time? What is your plan? What tools will you use?

Arnie Fertig wrote a great article on how to use LinkedIn while job hunting. Arnie’s 3 Ways to Search LinkedIn While Job Hunting are:

Learn about company culture, the people you may work with and connections who can make introductions.

Arnie’s ideas give you a clear roadmap. You can use this article step-by-step to capitalize on this resource. Arnie’s plan is a great way to network your way into a company using LinkedIn. As you take your job hunting ideas and commit them to writing, make sure you consider this strategy.

How you job hunt can make the difference in the time it takes to land your dream job. It can make it more or much less stressful. Spending time creating a written plan will pay off in many ways and help you make the best use of each day. This will get you in your new hire orientation sooner.

What strategies have you used to job hunt? Leave us your ideas in the comment section.

Don’t want to miss learning about this or other job-related topics? Click here

The post How your job search plan can hurt your success without you knowing it appeared first on Six-Second Resumes™.

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The ability to “think and speak on your feet” is an important skill that often determines your success in job interviews. And once you land the job, many kinds of careers and occupations require this skill. To practice for your upcoming interviews, try this exercise.

Print out this list of questions before you read through them. Cut them apart and put them in a jar. When you are ready to practice “thinking on your feet”, stand in front of a mirror, pull out a topic at random and talk to the mirror for two minutes about whatever is on the paper.

If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would you go first and why?

If you could have only 3 electrical appliances in your house, what would they be and why?

Why does glue not stick to the bottle?

What nocturnal animal would you be if you had to choose and why?

If Abe Lincoln and George Washington got into a fight who’d win?

If you had a snail that could magically grant wishes, what would you name it?

If you had the chance to go back in time for 24 hours, where and when would you go?

What’s your worst/best memory of high school and why?

What was your favorite pet you had as a child and why?

What is the most rewarding experience you have had and what made it so?

Who or what inspires you and why?

These are not your typical questions and there is no correct answer. The hiring manager is wanting to understand your reasoning, how you frame problems and how you solve them. Luckily, very few interviewers use anything like this.

Alison Doyle offers a great list of questions you would expect to be asked in an interview.   I would suggest printing these out and filling your jar with these, too. Then do the same exercise, picking a question at random, and answer it in front of the mirror.

Reviewing and practicing all the common questions you may be asked will give you confidence. And if you still have a few butterflies just before the interview, that’s ok. Just make them fly in formation. This will land you in your new hire orientation sooner.

What are your favorite answer to interview questions? Leave us a comment.

The post Ace Your Interview – Think on Your Feet appeared first on Six-Second Resumes™.

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We live at the edge of the mountains, with the Skyline Drive and Shenandoah National Park just a few miles above us. It snowed several inches last night. This morning, as the sun begins to peak over the mountain, a thick fog rolls in. Our normal view of Parker Mountain from the back deck is now obscured by fog and low hanging clouds. Parker mountain has disappeared.

Has this ever happened to you? You know something is there, but you cannot see it?  How about in your job search?

Clients seek me out because they saw the mountain, but now it is covered in fog. They had a clear picture of the job they wanted, and where it was, but then things got foggy and they could no longer find the mountain (the way to their next job).

After assuring them that the mountain, their dream job, was still there, we map out a written plan to not only find it again but to know where it is even on days when they can’t see it.

I can pull up Google Maps and see my house and Parker mountain, even when the clouds and fog block my view of it from the back deck. I know when the fog lifts, Parker Mountain will be there.

Write down your plan, your own Google Map for your job search. That way, when the fog rolls in, you will still know which way to go. This will get you in your new hire orientation sooner.

The post Clouds in Your Job Search? The Mountain is Still There appeared first on Six-Second Resumes™.

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O*NET rates the “stress tolerance” for each job on a scale from zero to 100, where a lower rating signals less stress. 

I did not even know there was such a measurement.  The article I read listed 25 jobs that pay over $70K per year and were ranked with a stress level below 70. While they are clear that no job is stress-free, these are in the lower range.

It made me think about how my clients rank their job prospects. Many people, before we start working together, rank their prospects by the chances of getting a callback.

They spend upwards of 60 seconds looking at an online job posting, decide to apply and upload their resume. Then they cross their fingers while looking for another listing and they repeat the process. At the end of the week, they have “sprayed and prayed” over 20 times and are still waiting for a call.

I propose that a better way to look for work is to take the time to rate your skills against the job posting. Does your skill set match 80% of the job posting bullet points? If yes, then its time to look further.

What type of position is it? Is it your dream job or a stepping stone towards your ultimate position? Would you be happy working there? Have you investigated the salary range of the position for your geographic area? What does the company website say about itself? Are your goals and skills aligned with their mission statement (or would you be comfortable adopting these?)

The list of ways to rate an employer is endless. Stress tolerance is one. But your ultimate ability to get hired requires much more than one measurement. Once you have rated a potential employer, then your job is to make all your marketing materials, your resume, your cover letter, mirror their mission, their goals, their story.

So, rate your potential employers and you will be sitting in your new hire orientation sooner.

The post Are You Rating Potential Employers for Stress? appeared first on Six-Second Resumes™.

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With today’s technology, a job search should be simple. You Google jobs, select one that would be great for you, upload your resume and cover letter, and hit send. Minutes later, you get a call saying how you are the perfect candidate, and “won’t you come in this afternoon so we can hire you.”

While technology gives us instant access to the tools, many aspects of the job search remain unchanged from a time when you looked at want ads in the Sunday paper and used your rotary phone to make calls. In that day, as is still true now, networking was a key aspect of successful job searches.

But what else can affect your success as you work to land your dream job? Here are five things I see that keep your job search from being a straight line from applying to “you’re hired.”

  1. Companies change their minds – You may be the perfect candidate and have sent a resume and cover letter so targeted that the reader would feel compelled to call you. But the company has changed direction and will not be filling the role. Chances are, they are not going to call or email you and let you know. Not hearing can raise all kinds of questions, but remember, none of us are mind readers.
  2. You are not the only candidate – In a perfect world, if you were the most qualified candidate, you would land the job. But there are other factors at work during the interview process. The process hiring managers use can be labeled the 3 C’s. First, they want to know if you are capable. This screens out the bulk of the applicants. Then they assess your character. Are you trustworthy, honest, and have you told us the truth? Once the hiring manager is satisfied, then it comes down to compatibility. Can they see you working for their team, being a part of their company? There are a lot of things you can do to promote your ability to be a part of the team, but in the end, someone else may just click with the hiring manager.
  3. Companies must follow the law – Companies and organizations must comply with a myriad of laws and regulations when it comes to hiring. It is possible that management has an internal candidate that they feel deserves the position. Yet, they cannot just give that position to their pre-selected person without risking blowback from their own employees and possible legal action from outside the company. This forces the company to post the position, go through the hiring process, and then award the job to their pre-selected candidate.
  4. You’re not clear on what’s next – You have been “spraying and praying” your resume across the Internet for almost six weeks. You have been saying to yourself, “someone must see how valuable I would be to their company.” But now you are beginning to think that there might be other ways to land your next job. So you are looking at your resume (again) and the cover letter template you are using to see what you should change. The best outcomes I have seen with my clients can be attributed in large part to their having a written plan. Write down your plan and clearly identify all the ways you will look for jobs. Did you know there are 12 different ways that are very effective? After you pick the 3 to 5 that you will use, decide how much time you will devote to each type and when you will follow-up. This process can be a roadmap to your success. Having a plan in your mind, without writing it down, can make the process troublesome and hard to see when things are not going smooth. Even with a written plan, there are factors that keep your job search from going straight. But this will take a lot of the stress out of landing your next job.
  5. Your attitude – Now it’s easy to tell yourself to stay positive and another to do it. The key, I believe, is to look at the entire job search process and realize it is a numbers game. Every NO you hear puts you one step closer to YES. It’s all about staying the course. Setting goals will keep you in the game. 28 years ago, I was unemployed. I set a goal for the number of applications and follow up calls I would send each week. I kept up my plan when I started getting calls, interviews, and even when I received my first offer. In the end, I chose from 3 different companies. This allowed me to choose my employer, rather than hoping someone would pick me. I believe my success in landing that job was in large part due to my positive attitude and confidence in my written plan. In a recent article, Jennifer Parris, Flex Jobs Career Writer shares five ways to have a positive attitude during your job search. Be sure and check it out.

Remember that some things are out of your control as you work your job search. And there are things you can do. Write down your plan so the steps to success are clear. Be mindful of how you feel and take steps to maintain an even keel. In the end, this is what will land you in your new hire orientation sooner.

What has worked for you? How have you kept a positive focus during your job search?

Leave your comments below.

The post Five reasons your job search is not a straight line appeared first on Six-Second Resumes™.

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You only have so many hours in the day. You’ve got to sleep, eat, and walk the dog. Get the kids to soccer, spend time with friends, maybe get to the gym. So how do you plan time to land your dream job?

Most of my clients come to me after trying the “All I need is a chance to get in front of a hiring manager, then I will wing it” plan. What they write down, if anything, are generic notes related to positions they have seen on Monster or Indeed. And they generally have only taken about 60 seconds before deciding they must apply to positions they see. This job hunting plan has less than a 2% chance of success.

Taking the ideas you have for your job hunt and writing them down markedly increases your chances of success in landing your new job. It does several other things:

  • Instead of an idea (which, when not written down is more of a dream or a wish), it gives you a clear framework for your focus.
  • It gives you permission to take care of yourself as part of your plan.
  • It reduces the guilt you might feel if you are with the family and not job hunting, or the equally uncomfortable guilt of spending all your time job hunting at the expense of your family and your own health.

If you are unemployed, you could budget up to 50 hours a week to finding a new job. If you are under-employed or currently employed, you may only have 10 to 15 hours a week to devote to your job hunt. So, the question becomes, how will you spend that time? What is your plan? What tools will you use?

Arnie Fertig wrote a great article on how to use LinkedIn while job hunting. Arnie’s 3 Ways to Search LinkedIn While Job Hunting are:

Learn about company culture, the people you may work with and connections who can make introductions.

Arnie’s ideas give you a clear roadmap. You can use this article step-by-step to capitalize on this resource. Arnie’s plan is a great way to network your way into a company using LinkedIn. As you take your job hunting ideas and commit them to writing, make sure you consider this strategy.

How you job hunt can make the difference in the time it takes to land your dream job. It can make it more or much less stressful. Spending time creating a written plan will pay off in many ways and help you make the best use of each day. This will get you in your new hire orientation sooner.

What strategies have you used to job hunt? Leave us your ideas in the comment section.

Don’t want to miss learning about this or other job-related topics? Click here

The post How your job hunt plan can hurt your success without you knowing it appeared first on Six-Second Resumes™.

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I was looking for information on leadership and came across this wonderful quote by Kathy Caprino. It is a great reminder of the steps needed to become a thought leader in your field.
“Before you can have a large impact on others, you have to first understand yourself intimately”

Kathy Caprino

However, in my head, I saw this version of the quote:

“Before you can make a positive impression in a face-to-face interview, you must understand your accomplishments intimately.”

Many of my clients seek me out for a resume. The typical conversation begins, “I am not very comfortable selling myself on paper or during the interview.” The answer is “If you do not sell yourself in a resume or face-to-face interview, WHO WILL?”

So how do you do that? If you make a list of responsibilities you have in your current job, you will look like everyone else. But if you show the hiring manager your accomplishments in the form of success stories, you can stand out from the group. You can have the biggest impact on a hiring manager by telling her how you did your job, not what you did in your job.

So, my clients and I set about discovering their success stories, their accomplishments. There are different ways to think about this, but I love STARs. You present a situation, then discuss the actions you took, and then, most importantly, you share the results. The hiring manager can see you solving the problem you describe and then begins to picture you solving problems in her company.

For example, as a follow-up to a question about customer service, one way to answer would be to say, “I’m a people person.” As you know, my dog is a people person, but I would not hire her as a customer service manager. But what if I said, “It was Christmas eve and I was at home. The phone rang, and it was a customer with a problem.” Now I have your attention. (Read the full story here)

To land your next job, you need to be able to tell the “Christmas Eve Story” or your own version of it, my “here’s what I did story.” And you have to understand yourself intimately, so you remember your stories and can tell the right one when needed. This will land you in your new hire orientation sooner.

What success story do you have? Leave a comment below.

The post Understand Yourself Before Starting Your Job Search appeared first on Six-Second Resumes™.

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The ability to “think and speak on your feet” is an important skill that often determines your success in job interviews. And once you land the job, many kinds of careers and occupations require this skill. To practice for your upcoming interviews, try this exercise.

Print out this list of questions before you read through them. Cut them apart and put them in a jar. When you are ready to practice “thinking on your feet”, stand in front of a mirror, pull out a topic at random and talk to the mirror for two minutes about whatever is on the paper.

If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would you go first and why?

If you could have only 3 electrical appliances in your house, what would they be and why?

Why does glue not stick to the bottle?

What nocturnal animal would you be if you had to choose and why?

If Abe Lincoln and George Washington got into a fight who’d win?

If you had a snail that could magically grant wishes, what would you name it?

If you had the chance to go back in time for 24 hours, where and when would you go?

What’s your worst/best memory of high school and why?

What was your favorite pet you had as a child and why?

What is the most rewarding experience you have had and what made it so?

Who or what inspires you and why?

These are not your typical questions and there is no correct answer. The hiring manager is wanting to understand your reasoning, how you frame problems and how you solve them. Luckily, very few interviewers use anything like this.

Alison Doyle offers a great list of questions you would expect to be asked in an interview.   I would suggest printing these out and filling your jar with these, too. Then do the same exercise, picking a question at random, and answer it in front of the mirror.

Reviewing and practicing all the common questions you may be asked will give you confidence. And if you still have a few butterflies just before the interview, that’s ok. Just make them fly in formation. This will land you in your new hire orientation sooner.

What is your favorite answer to an interview question? Leave us a comment.

The post Ace Your Interview – Think on Your Feet appeared first on Six-Second Resumes™.

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We live at the edge of the mountains, with the Skyline Drive and Shenandoah National Park just a few miles above us. It snowed several inches last night. This morning, as the sun begins to peak over the mountain, a thick fog rolls in. Our normal view of Parker Mountain from the back deck is now obscured by fog and low hanging clouds. Parker mountain has disappeared.

Has this ever happened to you? You know something is there, but you cannot see it?  How about in your job search?

Clients seek me out because they saw the mountain, but now it is covered in fog. They had a clear picture of the job they wanted, and where it was, but then things got foggy and they could no longer find the mountain (the way to their next job).

After assuring them that the mountain, their dream job, was still there, we map out a written plan to not only find it again but to know where it is even on days when they can’t see it.

I can pull up Google Maps and see my house and Parker mountain, even when the clouds and fog block my view of it from the back deck. I know when the fog lifts, Parker Mountain will be there.

Write down your plan, your own Google Map for your job search. That way, when the fog rolls in, you will still know which way to go. This will get you in your new hire orientation sooner.

The post Clouds? The Mountain is Still There appeared first on Six-Second Resumes™.

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This morning, I read an article titled “The Most Promising Jobs of 2019.’ LinkedIn publishes this annual survey and ranks what they feel will be the hottest jobs of the year.

What caught my eye was the top five list of soft skills required for these positions.

  1. Creativity
  2. Persuasion
  3. Collaboration
  4. Adaptability
  5. Time Management

These are critical skills in every occupation. Those who have mastered these are usually the employees who are advancing in a company. These soft skills can be shown on a resume, a cover letter, and in a face-to-face interview.

The best way to present your success with these soft skills is NOT to tell a future employer. To say on a Resume; I am a Creative, Persuasive, Collaborative, Adaptive [insert your job title here] who excels at Time Management is not memorable. But to show examples of how you exhibit each of these soft skills can get a hiring manager’s attention.

The best way to do that is to use STARs. Present a Situation you faced, share the Action you took to solve the problem, and most importantly, share the Results. (Read my Christmas Eve Story to learn more about STARs.) You can include these on your resume, your cover letter, and share them in person. They are an easy, effective way to showcase your skills. You are not telling, you are showing. These will make you memorable and increase greatly your chances of landing the job.

Read the original article, LinkedIn’s Most Promising Jobs of 2019.  You may find one of these hot position’s is perfect for you. You may also find in this blog post, a new way to present your skills that will get you in your new hire orientation sooner.

Are you applying for one of these hot jobs? Already have one? Post your thoughts.

The post What can You Learn from LinkedIn’s 2019 Most Promising Jobs? appeared first on Six-Second Resumes™.

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