Archive for the ‘job search’ category

Video Friday – Leave Your Home Life Home

February 25th, 2011

Do you sabotage your interviews by bringing your home life with you?

We all have responsibilities at home, but when you are trying to make a good impression on your potential new boss, remember your problems are not their problems. As a candidate, you need to fully concentrate on what you offer to your future company. What skills and talents do you bring? You wouldn’t bring a hamper of dirty laundry into an interview.  Don’t bring your personal life with you.

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Smart CEOs are Hiring the Unemployed (or at least they should be )

January 17th, 2011

Hey CEO’s!  If I could save you time, money, and attrition at your company, organization or business would you listen to me?

If I could show you how to increase your profits, orders, donations, services to your customers would it be worth your time?

Well, listen up.

For anyone who has been out of work for an extended period of time, last Friday’s Huffington Post article, How Employers Weed Out Unemployed Job Applicants, Others, Behind The Scenes isn’t news.

Anyone who has been looking for a while has hit up against the bias of employers passing them over in favor of people currently working.  Recruiters and HR staff cite that they are getting their marching orders from the top because people who are unemployed are perceived as not being up to speed, not current or just lazy and unqualified.

To tell you the truth, in a weird way I admire the folks who actually admit their bias.  As someone seeking work, it is far better to know where not to waste my time, than to try to uncover whether or not an employer is weeding out candidates based on unemployment status.

Smart CEO’s have done their homework and know such practices are neither immoral nor illegal.  But what you may not know, CEOs, is what you are doing is bad business.  Oh, people who are unemployed may argue that it’s unfair or not right; but we all know what’s driving the decision.  It’s the bottom line.  Money talks.

Okay, I’m going look at this from your big chair at the head of the board table.

And, for those of you playing along at home who are unemployed, you should listen, too.

Profit is driving decisions today;  or at the very least, there is a need to grow and support a non-profit,  to provide funding and grants to educational institutions, or supply a tax base for government services to keep organizations viable.  Everyone needs to know the dollars they spend today will return to keep their company or organization in the black, not put them in the red.

We all can agree on that point, right?  No big news here.  But how do you do it?  The economy is recovering… slowly.  How can you speed up the process, how can you make gains this quarter and the next?

Hey, are you still with me?  I’m going to let you in on a secret.

If you want the economy to recover faster, if you want to add money to your budget rather than slash it, want investment in your business, want consumers to buy your products, want people to donate to your cause HIRE SOMEONE WHO IS UNEMPLOYED.

I wrote about this in December – granted you were probably busy with end of year closings, trying to figure out if you could give your remaining employees some type of holiday bonus, or just caught up in all the festivities that occur between Thanksgiving and New Years – so in case you missed it, I’ll give you the gist of of what I said.

Not hiring someone because they are unemployed — regardless of your position on the subject — is bad business.

As an employer you may complain you aren’t getting orders for your goods, your staff budgets are cut, you’re being made to do more with less because the economic recovery is too slow.  Well, you may not like it, but those things you are complaining about? — you’re perpetuating them.

Here’s how you can fix your business, and the economy – HIRE SOMEONE WHO IS UNEMPLOYED.

Hiring someone who is unemployed is like watching the dominoes fall.

When an unemployed person gets a job they stop collecting unemployment — paid for by tax dollars — and start contributing to the tax base.

When an unemployed person gets a job they can pay their bills so they don’t amass debt and end up filing for bankruptcy leaving their lenders high and dry.

When an unemployed person gets a job mortgages are paid on time and foreclosure is avoided.  This not only means banks don’t have to be bailed out, it reduces the devaluation of everyone else’s homes.

When an unemployed person gets a job they spend money.  They pay for goods, services and contribute to charitable causes.  They become consumers and stimulate the economy.

When an unemployed person gets a job they stop draining their 401ks and IRAs.  They start saving and investing.  They contribute to retirement plans and college funds which translates into investment in stocks and bonds and mutual funds.  The market gains, and city, state and federal government bonds fund infrastructure projects and create jobs.

The talent pool of unemployed people out there is vast.  Take advantage of it.  These are people with training, skills and experience.  They’re chomping at the bit to work — and currently there’s a fire sale.

Where I am here in North Carolina many unemployed are not only college educated professionals, but have advanced degrees as well.  These people are tech savvy and ramp up quickly.

Oh, I hear you protest — “they’ll just leave when the economy gets better”, “they’re not going to stick around for the long term”, “they’re just waiting for a better job”.

Well, here’s a reality check.

The economy isn’t getting better any time fast unless people get jobs and start working.

As to looking for long term employees, look at the average time the people who are unemployed have worked for their previous employers — now look at that candidate of yours who is already employed.  Who has a better record of long term employment and loyalty?  Besides, if that candidate you are looking at is willing to jump ship to work for you, who is to say they aren’t going to be willing to leave you in the dust for the next passing ship.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, “The length of time a worker remains with the same employer increases with the age at which the worker began the job.  Of the jobs that workers began when they were 18 to 22 years of age, 72% of those jobs ended in less than a year and 94% ended in fewer than 5 years.  Among jobs started by 39- to 44-year-olds, 33% ended in less than a year and 68% ended in fewer than 5 years.”

Hey, that’s a recommendation for older workers as well!

And regarding waiting for a better job?  A recent survey by Right Management showed that a whopping 84% of workers are planning on seeking new employment in 2011.  So that excuse isn’t going to fly.

People who are employed are less willing to bear the burden of covering two people’s jobs.  Employees are burnt out, stressed out and just plain tired of doing more with less for the last 3 years.  A recent article on Beyond Morale, a blog on employee engagement, underscores that those people who have been left behind to do the job of two people (or more) on their single salary are disgruntled and less loyal.

On the other hand, I’m pretty sure a newly employed, former long-term unemployed worker would be hungry, thankful and happy for meaningful work.  After all, they’ve dealt with trying to make ends meet on a fraction of what they previously earned.  They’ve already lived with the stigma and other negative attributes associated with unemployment — and they aren’t looking to return there any time soon.

Hey, CEOs are you still there?  Do you still think it’s smart passing over the person who is unemployed to fill your vacant position?  You have an opportunity; will you take advantage of it?  You have the ability to do the one thing an unemployed person can’t do for themselves – HIRE SOMEONE WHO IS UNEMPLOYED.

Not hiring someone because they are unemployed is bad business.  But luckily, you can fix that.

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5 You May Have Missed – Women in the Workforce

January 13th, 2011

No matter how you slice it, women face more challenges in the workplace.  Even though women edged ahead of men in the last year making up the greater part of the labor market by a hair, they still make around $.80 cents for each dollar earned by a man.  This week we look at some reasons why, and some suggestions how to better position yourself if you are a women in the workforce.

Despite making up a greater part of the workforce, Ms. Magazine finds Economic Recovery? Not So Much for Women.

The Business Career Development Blog explores Why Women Need a Sponsor for Career Development.

This is a good precursor to a recent Harvard Business Review article on When Female Networks Aren’t Enough.

And the Wall Street Journal weighs in on Advice for Women on Developing a Leadership Style.

And CNN offers 8 ways women can get ahead in the workplace.

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Video Friday – Best Careers 2011

January 7th, 2011

You may not be aware of it, but US News has an extensive Careers section.  They recently pulled together a list of the 50 best careers.  The short video below talks about how they did their research and what they found to be the best careers of 2011.

Check out the Best Careers section of their website.  What career path do you think is the right one for you?

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Why #hirefriday?

January 4th, 2011

If you were on Twitter last Friday you probably noticed the mad amount of retweeting going on thanks to Chris Brogan.

A simple tweet by Chris on behalf of #hirefriday resounded in over 1,500 retweets. While those retweets were well intended, I’m not sure everyone who retweeted Chris understands what #hirefriday is all about.

The #hirefriday tag is intended to promote the talents of people who are out of work and looking for their next career opportunity.  Instead of suggesting people with the #ff or #followfriday tag, the #hirefriday tag is used to suggest folks to be hired.

#hirefriday is movement on Twitter that began to gain strength in early 2010. In answer to people being out of work Margo Rose, (a.k.a. @HRMargo) conceived of an idea where job seekers could be found by recruiters and employers by tweeting out information about themselves. If you are unfamiliar with #hirefriday you may want to read the guidelines.

The great thing about #hirefriday that everyone can help here. It doesn’t matter if you have a job to offer or are out of work. People watch the #hirefriday stream and help by retweeting the tweets of job seekers to their network of followers.   Or to borrow from the old Faberge Shampoo ad‘and they told two friends and so on, and so on’.

Using the power of retweeting, a single job seeker’s tweet can be amplified out to a network of infinite proportions. Far beyond what the job seeker would be able to reach on their own.

That isn’t to say there haven’t been some bumps along the way. Well-meaning folks looking to offer actual jobs have posted them in the stream. Unfortunately, once the stream started getting filled with job offers, it was easy to lose sight of the people #hirefriday was intended to promote.  As a result #jobfriday and #workwednesday were quickly put into play providing an easy to find location where jobs may be posted.

There’s even a Hire Friday Chat – #HFChat – on Fridays (Noon – 1pm EST) where Recruiters offer career advice on topics ranging from how to get beyond the gatekeepers to what not to do in an interview.

And because not everything is best said in 140 characters, there are other media streams to help support people in their job search.

Margo Rose has a blog where she regularly imparts advice, tells the success stories of #hirefriday and fans the flames to keep the #hirefriday fires burning.

There’s also a #hirefriday LinkedIn group where displaced workers can have their tweets critiqued — because really, it’s just not that easy trying to explain who you are in such a small amount of space.  The LinkedIn group provides great resources like articles, tips and advice on job hunting, as well as a general forum for discussion.  In addition, employers are encouraged to post open positions jobs section of the group.

And what would this world be without a Facebook page to like?  The #hirefriday FaceBook page is chock full of daily job search ideas and suggestions features like ResuMonday, Tuesday’s Trending Tool and Work It Wednesday.

So as you can see, #hirefriday is more than an inspired tweet by Chris Brogan.  However, surely all job seekers can thank him for raising the visibility of this great and free job search tool.

You have a few more days to get your tweet critiqued.  Who knows, this may be the Friday you get hired.  Are you ready for #hirefriday?

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