Monthly Archives: December 2016

Remember Losing A Good Job Can Teach You 5 Invaluable Lessons

You lost your job, and you feel like a complete failure. Whether it was your fault or it happened because of reasons beyond your control, it stings. Stop torturing yourself wondering what you could have done differently! And before you start searching the classifieds for a new gig, take a moment to consider what benefits come from losing a good job. That’s right; here are five life lessons that you can thank unemployment for teaching you.

Your potential is limitless.

You are an excellent carpenter, dancer, phlebotomist, whatever. That isn’t all you are, and it isn’t all you can do. You might be able to channel your strength into a new career. Imagine you have always worked as a singer. What are the subfields of singing? Can you use your singing skills for a new type of job? Why not try out as a voice-over artist, using your vocal control, pitch, and power to add character to your voice? Could you use songs as a means to connect with students? What’s stopping you from trying your hand at songwriting? What else can you do? Take a moment to brainstorm things that fit your skill set. And don’t forget, you are capable of learning new skills. Now is the time to find out what you really can do!

There’s a whole world out there.

What do you tell a teenager with a broken heart? You know that she really loved her ex, but she won’t be unhappy forever. In time, she will probably meet someone who is infinitely more compatible than her former companion. As an unemployed person, don’t forget that the world is bigger than the place you live. It’s full of opportunities. Would your talents be valuable in a different town, state, or country? If you are not able to relocate, can you find clients or provide services internationally using the Internet? Widen your perspective. You will be amazed at what possibilities exist.

You still deserve your vacation time.

Just because you got the pink slip doesn’t mean you didn’t work hard. The gap between jobs offers you a chance to recharge your batteries. If you have the desire and can afford it, take that big trip that you’ve always wanted. If your budget is limited, choose an affordable location or share costs with a group of friends. Even if your budget is nil, find awesome things to do for free around your town. For example, it doesn’t cost anything to camp out in your backyard to look at the stars. When you do return from your vacation, not only will you be refreshed but also you will have something interesting to talk about during job interviews.

Never tear down a bridge you built. In fact, construct new ones.

Don’t leave on a sour note. Wish everyone well and mean it! When you begin searching for a new job, you might be able to take advantage of the relationships you built with former coworkers. Strong recommendations and insider job leads can help you land a new position. When you begin to interview, don’t count it a total loss if you don’t get the job. Send a thank you note and invite the company to keep your resume on file. You can check in again after a few months if you’re particularly interested in the business or if you have reason to believe that there are fresh openings. You can also reach out others who are or have been unemployed. Besides offering a listening ear, they might have some valuable advice to share.

Sometimes you need to be missed to be appreciated.

Goodbye doesn’t have to be forever. One of two things might happen when you leave your position. It might become apparent how valuable you were to the company, and they might call you back when they are able. In that case, you will either return in triumph, blissfully decline because you have already accepted another position, or tell them you’d rather explore some other options. Or, they might never think of you again. Either way, you will survive!

The Personality Traits a Good Marketing Consultant Needs

This professional works with organizations and businesses on a per-project basis and is usually self-employed. Some may work with consulting firms. To become a good marketing consultant there are certain personality traits you should have, whether you are just starting out as a marketing consultant or been working as one for several years. In today’s business world, firms sometimes are forced to lay-off or let go employees. Although having these personality traits will not guarantee that you will always have a job they can weigh in your favor if there is a cut at the firm where you work.

• Have enough experience, which does not mean that all of your experience comes from working as a marketing consultant. Experience can include being able to work difficult clients and keeping them happy and a client of your firm, understand what the client wants, etc.

• Outgoing personality-this means that you are comfortable “putting yourself out there,” You have the self confidence with meeting new people, building new client relationships, networking, selling yourself to clients and proving that you can produce what you tell your clients you will do. It also means that you are a motivated self-starter and will work to bring new clients into the firm without being reminded or told that is your job. You also have to like people.
• Plenty of connections that will enable you to bring new clients to the firm or if self-employed you have the connections to build up your client base and bring in more income
• You need to have money sense and know when it is okay to take a risk. Most marketing consultants are paid on commissions and if you are just starting out as a self-employed marking consultant you need to make sure that you have the funds to stay afloat until you get your first client. Even if you work for a consultant firm times could be slow and you are not getting the commissions as before so you need to make sure that you have money set aside just for these times.
• Strong work ethic because being a marketing consultant does not you will have the normal nine to five working hours. You have to be available when it is convenient for your clients sometimes, you may have to work late nights, weekends, and maybe even early mornings. You also have to have the self-discipline to set your own hours and work them, understanding that may be situations where there is an emergency meeting you have to attend or have to change your schedule for a client
• Be willing to take work home with you, especially if there is a deadline or a client wants to make changes in their marketing strategy.

You Should Avoiding Interview Anguish

You’ve done the work, and put in the time… and now you’re scheduled for the interview which could land your first ever full-time job. Hooray! This is the chance to explain your skills, make an impression and explain why you’re the best person for the job. However it is important to expect the unexpected. Any high-pressure, nerve-wracking situation can bring about variables you would never prepare for.

With this in mind, before you go take a moment to reflect and think about yourself (like you did when preparing your resume.) A few seconds of preparation now could be the determining factor later on.

If it has been awhile, or you don’t have a lot of prior interview experience, the process can seem intimidating. One of the most important things to remember, whether interviewing in person, over the phone or via Skype, is to practice. Many college campuses offer mock interview programs; these provide great opportunities for pre-interview prep, and their methods can be used much more informally at home. Just look over a list of questions, or discuss answer options with a friend. The more you do this, the more natural it will become.

With any in-the-moment event, the unexpected can occur… even if you’ve practiced endlessly. Prepare for the unforeseen by taking a few minutes to review six common interview mistakes – what to do to avoid, or bounce back from, spontaneous bumps in the conversational road.

1. Don’t Overshare.

The interview begins with the standard “Tell me about yourself” query. Though you’ve prepared extensively, you suddenly realize you’ve been rambling for ten minutes. How can you bring the answer back around to the message you were initially trying to convey?

Expert Tip: It is important to remember that interviewers are people too. It’s okay to pause a moment, mentally returning to what you were supposed to mention in the first place. And if you’re still embarrassed post-monologue? Don’t be afraid to verbally acknowledge your mistake. Based on the recruiter’s temperament and your personality, saying something like “Wow, that was thorough!” is not only okay, but often endearing and relatable.

2. Don’t Read a Script.

While it is important to practice and prepare, just be aware of keeping your sentences fresh. If you’ve practiced too much, answers can come off totally rehearsed and bland.

Expert Tip: Before the official day, try a mock interview with someone you trust. Getting feedback from someone who really knows you can be eye-opening! You might be doing something, like nail-biting or fidgeting, that you would have never thought to plan for!

Speaking of which…

3. Avoid Those Nervous Habits.

We all have them. Twirling hair, avoiding eye contact, trailing off at… the end… of sentences…

How can you avoid doing what happens so naturally?

Expert Tip: Be aware of these tendencies and take deliberate countermeasures. Talk too fast? Consciously make the effort to slow down. If you tend to trail off, instead end sentences determinedly strong!

With this in mind, know these eccentricities will never go away completely. And that’s okay. The goal is not elimination but containment – just to avoid memorable distractions.

4. Don’t Be a Stereotype.

You’ve got a response of the ages for the “What are your greatest strengths” question. However, you panic when asked about weaknesses. Your stiff comment of being a “perfectionist who works too hard” now seems lame and cheesy.

Expert Tip: Have no fear… this can be fixed! Take that response and connect it specifically to things you truly need to work on, and add what you are doing currently to correct these issues. Or move on. But whatever you choose, DO NOT share a plethora of other weaknesses in an attempt to cover for your previous response. You want to get hired, after all!

5. Do Your Homework.

Don’t fall for one of the most common recruiter traps in the book: when asked, know the job you’re applying for. Scrambling for a pathetic response in the moment is one of the biggest pet peeves of any hiring manager, so be sure to research before the interview.

Expert Tip: There is always information about companies and positions online; taking a few minutes to read beforehand can add immeasurable value to your interview.

6. Don’t Be Unreasonable.

You’re almost done, and have nailed every hirer question… until salary (unexpectedly) comes up. Panicked, you offer a range way higher or lower than you deserve considering past education and experience.

Expert Tip: Though you might not be sure exactly what you should expect to earn, online resources can again prove beneficial to prepare for this inquiry. Campus career center website Glassdoor, or other online salary calculation tools, can help you determine a rough, appropriate estimate. Additionally consider location, background and other potential factors.

A little time taken for preparation and practice could be the key to landing the position of your dreams!

The other key to achieving success is continual strategic planning. With this in mind, I have developed a systematic, calculated writing process that has consistently proven effective in attaining desired career outcomes. An incredible resume is the way to get you instantly started on the career path of your choice.

I’ll Get You Hired

I have been a Professional Resume Writer for more than 12 years, and am proud to say that my clients have 100% success in getting interviews when utilizing my resumes. I would love to help you achieve this as well.

Now Educating for Impending Careers

The vast majority of us in the United States were educated as children and young adults so that we could succeed both as citizens sustaining our democratic way of life and as productive workers able to sustain ourselves and our families economically. For the most part the combination of public and private K-12 schools and higher education universities and colleges have served us quite well. We are by and large a well educated and constructive populace.

But can we rely on the old-school methodologies to sustain us for a world of work that will be characterized as mercurial and erratic calling for agility, adaptability, and rapid evolution? There is reason to think not. An economy that is experiencing increased speed and transformation will not be well served by an educational structure and model designed to prepare students for a relatively static and predictable work world.

Let’s examine the existing paradigm that traditionally and currently defines most American high schools and colleges. There are two patterns at play based on the concepts of liberal education and career-focused education. By the time a student reaches high school they select or have selected for them one of these persuasions or the other.

Liberal (or liberal arts) education refers to an approach that encourages a broad and diverse exposure to fundamental and diverse subject matter with the goal being to educate a student for a complex world requiring a variety of perspectives, skills, and areas of knowledge. When and if college is reached the student fits into this mix a concentrated focus in one or more disciplines.

A career-focused or vocational path on the other hand focuses much more on preparing the student for a relevant job that is in demand in the workforce. Breadth gives way to depth in that a craft or skill set demonstrably employable is chosen, studied, and eventually mastered by the student.

To be clear I am not suggesting that there is anything fundamentally wrong with these models. My concern is in the traditional modes of delivery of them. We are still under the assumption that a high school diploma and / or college degree program that terminates upon graduation is enough to provide a student for a lifetime career. It used to be, but projections are that it won’t be enough going forward.

The workplace and its career needs are becoming increasingly digitized and globalized, resulting in an urgency for malleable, resilient, and entrepreneurial workers to address the ever vibrant economic demands across the planet. To maintain these attributes workers will need to accept and embrace continuous lifelong learning, upskilling, and training to keep up and stay ahead. Schooling will never end. In fact it will become an integral and ongoing part of any advantageous job worth having for most.

We will likely see a time when liberal and career-focused methods become more of an as-needed hybrid with a greater proliferation of skill and knowledge-based certification and training programs not necessarily tied to slow moving traditional education settings. Students, employees, and educators will begin migrating more intentionally into online, virtual, and yes, brick & mortar learning facilities that offer the highest quality, data driven, short and long-term instruction essential to the requirements of the emerging economy.

As an educator myself with 31 years in public schools and 5 years as a part time college adjunct I can say with some certainty that this industry will not on its own move in this direction without a lot of resistance. There are many entrenched interests compelled to resist such changes. A more responsive and pragmatic instructional delivery will likely arise from a combination of innovative educators and demanding students and employees requiring relevant reactive instruction.

However we can all begin by getting our heads around the concept of lifelong learning. I predict it will be far more energizing than draining.