Networking and your job search!

Networking and your job search!

Job Search Part 3: What networking can do for your job search!

Networking – this is the third and last post in a short series on Job Search. In the first at this link  we said that you have a decision to make! The clearer you are about the kind of work you want, the more likely you are to be successful.

In the second post at this link,  I set out some options for you about where to look for work

Recruitment agencies
On-Line Job Sites
Contacting employers directly
LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter
Local newspapers and bulletin boards
Graduate and Intern schemes
Word of mouth – Networking
I said that I thought networking was the most effective way to look for work; so that is what we are going to tackle to-day.

Most jobs, particularly in the private sector, are never advertised at all. You find out about those jobs through talking to people – networking.

Letting people you know, and people they can introduce you to, know what you have to offer, really does bring new opportunities. These contacts can offer advice from own their experiences of job search. They can tell you about the sector they work in and they can introduce you to others, so that your network expands.

But networking is more than just asking for help! You need to make it a two-way conversation. In order to receive, you should be ready to give.

So what have you got to share in this conversation? Well, you can be an attentive audience! You can listen with real interest, attention and respect to what they have to say. Plus you can share your own knowledge. You can talk about your own sector and you can share your own contacts. Sometimes people are really grateful for an opportunity to talk about what is happening to them at work. Play your part and offer support when it is needed.

Make it an ongoing and mutual conversation. You can become ambassadors for each other and connect each other with new possibilities.

You can network beyond your existing circle. For example at a meeting of your professional organization. If you don’t already belong to the professional organization for your sector, now is the time to join. It can be expensive but it is a really good investment. Your professional organization can help you keep you up to date with developments in your profession and in your market sector, It can give you early warning about possible changes legislation. Knowing about new trends helps you to keep up personal development even though you are out of work. Most importantly when you are out of work it provides a way to stay linked-in to the world of work.

You can network, as well, at events like job fairs which are intended to bring employers together with potential new employees. And if you are thinking of making a career change into starting your own business, lots of business networking events are held for you each week.

Networking is having a conversation

Remember, the keys to success on any networking occasion are establishing a relationship and having a conversation. It is about showing you are someone they want, but it is not about selling yourself in a way that embarrasses you or the people you talk to. Have a short description of who you are and what you do crafted before you arrive. But have a care with the traditional elevator pitch about what you have to offer at work. Have one ready but use it with care and discretion. Too many people at networking events treat them as opportunity to sell themselves rather than to make contacts.

Try to remember something particular about each of the new contact that you make. Find a quiet place to make a couple of notes after your conversation. Then follow up after the event in a way that shows you can add value. For example, if someone has a particular interest find a book or a newspaper article that you can send to them.

To network wel,l you need to understand the networking process and have the confidence to take an active part in it. If you would like one to one advice on networking email me. I am happy to offer readers of this blog a free half hour coaching session by phone or Skype

I know you can get that job you have hoped for and I would like to help you. My contact details are below

Wendy Smith, Career, life and Business Coach
Wendy Smith, Principal Coach, WiseWolf Life and Career Coaching

Wendy Smith is a career consultant, life coach and business coach with depth of experience in organisational development, management, coaching and personal development. That experience means she is equally at home helping clients find a new career direction, starting-up new businesses or dealing with life’s more challenging personal issues. You can contact her at wendy@wisewolfcoaching.com

Wendy has written a little eBook on how to get on with your boss and a book on job search – you can find all her books on Amazon at this link

         

 

Job Search – Stand Out From the Crowd

Job Search – Stand Out From the Crowd

job search - standout from the crowd

Job Search – Stand Out From the Crowd – This post is about applying for advertised vacancies for which you are in competition. Unfortunately, in the present climate, job seeking is intensely competitive.  There are usually many applicants for every advertised post.  That’s is why networking to find work is so important.

When you submit a written application, with or without a CV/Résumé, what matters most is that you convince the recruiter that you meet the criteria for the vacancy.  Include relevant keywords that will stand out like head lights – you can find out more about job search keywords at this link.

Once you get to the interview stage, you are up against others who havea lso shown on paper that they meet the requirements. The interview and your references will show whether what you have said on paper in valid.  And at interview stage you need to stand out from the crowd.

Standing out from the crowd is not without risks.

Job Search – Stand Out From the Crowd – Take into account the culture of the organization when deciding how to make your mark.  When deciding what to wear for the interview, for example, knowing the company dress code is important.  If it is casual then make sure you wear very smart casual attire.  No, you don’t want be so bland that you sink into the wall paper. Wearing, for example, a smart but distinctive tie, scarf or piece of jewellery, can help the interviewers remember you.  The “something distinctive “needs to be chosen with great care and very good taste!

The interview is also an opportunity to show clearly that you will bring added value beyond that required by the job specification.  Show that added value with care. And make sure that what you say is relevant to the questions that you are being asked and to the job.

You can stand out by showing your enthusiasm. Being actively engaged in the process and showing real interest in the organization impresses. Be interested in what the interviewers have to say to you.

Prepare well!

The impression you want to make is that you are intelligent, highly competent and likely to be an asset to the organization and to your future work colleagues.

Make sure that you get a good night’s sleep before the interview.  Do your best to arrive in plenty of time.  You want to be bright-eyed and relaxed – not red-faced and slightly out of breath.

You want to be remembered but for all the right reasons!

Make sure you do your home work. Find out all you can you can about the job, the organization and the people you are likely to meet. Treat them with courtesy and work hard to show evidence that you are the person best able to do the job.

If you would like support in your job search please get in touch.

Wendy Smith is a career consultant, life coach and business coach with depth of experience in organisational development, management, coaching and personal development. That experience means she is equally at home helping clients find a new career direction, starting-up new businesses or dealing with life’s more challenging personal issues. You can contact her at wendy@wisewolfcoaching.com

Wendy has written a little eBook on how to get on with your boss and a book on job search – you can find all her books on Amazon at this link

         

Writing That Winning CV

Writing That Winning CV

Writing That Winning CV – a CV that is going to win you the job is the one that makes the reader want to know more about you. The CV that makes it much more likely that you will be invited to an interview! Your CV needs to show the recruiter that you will be best fitted to to meet their requirements. Good CVs are valuable and a very good investment of your time.

So how do you make yourself stand-out from the crowd?

Any CV that you write is only relevant if it shows how you meet the requirements of the particular role. So be ready to tailor you generic CV for each post. Be specific about skills, experience and personal qualities. Show that you understand their requirements.

These days employers and recruiter receive sacks full of CVs. Make sure yours short (no more than two sides of A4 if possible), easy to read and attractive.

Lay it out clearly with enough space and clear section headings.

Your CV shows what you bring to the organization

Your CV shows what you bring to the organization, so make it look professional.

  • Choose a clear, professional font that is easy to read (e.g. Arial, Calibri, Times New Roman)
  • Make no typing mistakes – CVs with typos get “binned”. A simple spell check is not enough: ask someone else to proof-read your finished CV
  • Have clear headings (key skills, work experience, education etc) so that these can be scanned quickly
  • Order your experience and education into reverse chronological order with the latest first.
  • For recent posts, show what you achieved and delivered for each post
  • Concentrate on the last 10 years and sum-up earlier experience briefly.

Many recruiters’ job sites search candidates’ CVs for specific keywords. It is important to include those which are likely to apply for the particular job. Create clear statements that demonstrate your skills and what you deliver, using terms that show you as positive and pro-active.

These are positive keywords, you could use to describe your personal attributes

  • Accurate
  • Adaptable
  • Confident
  • Friendly
  • Hard-working
  • Innovative
  • Pro-active
  • Reliable
  • Responsible
  • Intelligent
  • Experienced

When describing your experience and achievement use pro-active descriptions like:

  • Achieved
  • Formulated
  • Planned
  • Broadened
  • Generated
  • Managed
  • Represented
  • Completed
  • Implemented
  • Shaped
  • Delivered
  • Saved

If you have saved an organization money or generated new business, flag it up with figures and facts.

I know you can get that job you have been hoping for and I would like to help you. Email me wendy@wisewolfcoaching.com now to arrange a free half hour coaching session by Skype.

Wendy Smith, Career, life and Business Coach
Wendy Smith, Principal Coach, WiseWolf Life and Career Coaching

Wendy Smith is a career consultant, life coach and business coach with depth of experience in organisational development, management, coaching and personal development. That experience means she is equally at home helping clients find a new career direction, starting-up new businesses or dealing with life’s more challenging personal issues. You can contact her at wendy@wisewolfcoaching.com

Wendy has written a little eBook on how to get on with your boss and a book on job search – you can find all her books on Amazon at this link

         

 

Job Search Interview – When the Interview Went Wrong

Job Search Interview – When it Goes Wrong

Job Search Interview – so, you put lots of effort into preparing for that interview and you tried hard but somehow, something just went wrong. You know it and you suspect they know it too!

Perhaps you woke up not feeling well or something had  happened in your private life to distract you. Maybe something happened on the journey!.  Whatever it was, there something threw you off your best performance.  And now you feel bad about it.

Can You Get A Second Chance?

Well, here is the good news! Although not all, there are many employers who may be willing a give you the benefit of the doubt if you are well fitted in other ways.  Going back quickly, thanking them for the time they have spent on you already and explaining your circumstances may just do the trick.

Don’t go over the top but email or write to them briefly explaining what went wrong.  Make sure you emphasise your interest in the job and ask if it is possible to meet a second time or perhaps arrange a phone interview. Remind them of your referees and that they will be willing to confirm what a good candidate you are.

Set out again briefly why you really want this job and your interest in working for the organization and then sum up why you are particularly well fitted for the role. Don’t forget to remind them again of your contact details.

You have nothing to lose by giving it a try,  and much to gain.  Good luck.

Wendy Mason is the The Career Coach – helping you to find fresh perspectives on your Job Search and Career. She helps you work towards your goals and aspirations, in a way that fits in with both work and home life. Email her at wendymason@wisewolfcoaching.com,  find her on Skype at wendymason14, or call +44 (0) 2081239146 (02081239146 for UK callers) or +1 262 317 9016 if you are in the US.

A free trial/consultation allows you to try phone coaching from the comfort of your own home and without risk. Don’t forget to ask about the Summer Special Offer 

 

 

Interview Checklist

Interview Checklist

Job Search – The Interview Checklist

Interview checklist – are you ready for that interview? This interview checklist will take you step by step you through everything you need to do to be a success!

What are you going to wear?

The first impression you make on a potential employer can make a big difference. So you need to dress appropriately for a job interview – check out what passes for appropriate business dress in the organization you wish to join. Ask around among your contacts; but note, a business suit is usually standard. Have your interview outfit ready to go, so you can be ready for an interview at very short notice. If you are being interviewed online with a camera switched on, think about how you will look and make sure the background is business like.  Check how you will look before you go online

Review your response to the advert and job description

Take the time to remind yourself how you meet the requirement. Then make sure you have your list available for the interview of exactly how you meet the skills, knowledge and qualities required by the employer. Emphasize those most important for success in the job. Be ready to describe successes you have had that make you the perfect match for the job. The closer your qualifications and experience match the job requirements, the better chance you’ll have of getting a second round interview and a job offer.

Research the organization and those interviewing you

How much do you know about the organization itself? Before you go to the interview be sure you are well informed. Do an internet search and use LinkedIn.

Use your contacts

Do you know anyone who is working at the organization or who has worked there recently? Knowing someone can make a big difference – they might be able to put in a good word for you. Plus your contacts can help you with inside information about the organization, its people and, possibly, the recruitment process itself.

Prepare for Interview Questions

Take time to think through questions you are likely to be asked during the interview. This will help you to organize your answers and it will help to reduce stress.  Ask a friend or family or family member to help you practice your answers – if they are prepared to give you a mock interview so much the better.

Prepare for a presentation

Check whether a presentation is required and then find out as much as possible about the subject.  If they don’t suggest one, then concentrate on showing how you are fitted and how you would approach the job.  Prepare your materials well in advance if you can and have spare copies. Have handouts ready and to a good quality – again take enough for the panel and some spares.  Check out what technology and other material will be available for your use.  If using your own equipment, make sure it is working properly on the day. Don’t assume you can use your own without making inquiries first and ask about plugs etc. Run through your presentation, preferably in front of as friend, beforehand.

Have Clear Travel Directions and Allow Plenty of time

It’s important to know where you need to go for your job interview. You don’t want to be late so start in good time. Use Google Maps to get directions if you’re not sure where you are going.  Check on parking and/or public transport so you arrive with time to spare.

Time to relax!

Check out your appearance when you arrive and then use a simple breathing technique to help you relax – here is a link to one; http://www.yourhappinessfactor.net/2011/02/angry-frustrated-and-stressed-relax-and.html

I hope you have found this Interview Checklist useful.  Now go in there and wow them.  I wish you every success and if you would like some extra help, please get in touch.

Wendy is the The Career Coach – helping you to find fresh perspectives on your Job Search and Career. She helps you work towards your goals and aspirations, in a way that fits in with both work and home life. Email her at wendymason@wisewolfcoaching.com,  find her on Skype at wendymason14, or call +44 (0) 2081239146 (02081239146 for UK callers) or +1 262 317 9016 if you are in the US.

A free trial/consultation allows you to try phone coaching from the comfort of your own home and without risk. Don’t forget to ask about the Summer Special Offer 

  • Job Search – The Interview – Competency Based Interview Questions and Answers
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Interview Questions

Interview Questions

Job Search – Dealing With The Killer Interview Questions

Interview Questions – Career Coach Peggy McKee gives you tips and ideas on how to prepare for those killer questions. Are you prepared?


This video is from http://careerconfidential.com/specials/peggys-podcast-weekly/
Wendy is the Happiness Coach and author of  The Wolf Project and a new novel, Blood Brothers, to be published in Summer 2013.  As a life and career coach and blogger, she helps people reach their goals and aspirations. As a novelist she hopes to entertain. Oh and she writes poetry too! To find out more email wendymason@wisewolfcoaching.com,  find her on Skype at wendymason14, or call +44 (0) 2081239146 (02081239146 for UK callers) or +1 262 317 9016 if you are in the US.

A free trial/consultation allows you to try phone coaching from the comfort of your own home and without risk.  And remember there are great benefits to be achieved from coaching by phone or Skype.

CV review and interview preparation and coaching to improve your confidence and self esteem are a speciality

Job Search Techniques

Job Search Techniques

Job Search Techniques To Help You Stand Out From The Crowd

Job Search Techniques – with increased competition for jobs, it’s more important than ever to brand and market yourself to find success. Career coach Linda Ginac, Master PCM and CEO of The  Ginac Group, offers tips on how to find your talents and the value you can bring to a company and then use professional techniques to advertise yourself.  (This video is Copyright MyFoxAustin.com)

Wendy Mason is the Happiness Coach and author of a new novel, The Wolf Project.  Wendy is a life and career coach and writer. She is passionate about helping people find happiness at work and at home! To find out more email wendymason@wisewolfcoaching.com, find her on Skype at wendymason14, or call +44 (0) 2081239146 (02081239146 for UK callers) or +1 262 317 9016 if you are in the US.  

A free trial/consultation allows you to give phone coaching a real trial without any financial risk. And remember there are great benefits to be achieved from coaching by phone or Skype.

CV review and interview preparation a speciality

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Job Search Tips

Job Search Tips

Monster’s Top 5 Job Search Tips

I found these five top job search tips on the Monster website.

Five key things you need to do to make your job hunt a resounding success.

  1. Look for hidden vacancies. Instead of advertising their available jobs, employers often look to fill vacancies by word-of-mouth, head-hunting or simply by recruiting internally. Knowing how to get yourself in contention for these roles could give you a major boost when it comes to finding your next role.
  2. Get employers to come to you. Getting head-hunted is no longer the preserve of employees in senior management. When you post your CV online, you are immediately putting your details within reach of thousands of employees may save you the trouble of searching through job adverts.
  3. Target the right companies. Do you want to be a big fish in a small pond or would you rather have the safety of a large organisation with job security and a clear career path? Knowing what you want allows you to narrow down your search and spend more time on applying for the roles you really want.
  4. Build a network. Networking is getting to know people who can help you develop your career prospects. You don’t need to be a big shot or the most outgoing person in the world to network effectively, just keep your ears open and listen for information that could work to your advantage.
  5. Keep your spirits up. As time passes, the rejections mount up and the budgets get tighter, it’s easy to become disheartened. However, this is exactly the time when you need to dust yourself off and put in more hard work than ever. One of the main attributes of a successful job seeker is persistence.

Working with a career coach can have a huge impact on the success of your job search  If you would like my support, please get in touch.

Wendy Smith, Career, life and Business Coach
Wendy Smith, Principal Coach, WiseWolf Life and Career Coaching

Wendy Smith is a career consultant, life coach and business coach with depth of experience in organisational development, management, coaching and personal development. That experience means she is equally at home helping clients find a new career direction, starting-up new businesses or dealing with life’s more challenging personal issues. You can contact her at wendy@wisewolfcoaching.com

Wendy has written a little eBook on how to get on with your boss and a book on job search – you can find all her books on Amazon at this link

         

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Thursday Quotes – Job Search – Keep Your Spirits Up

Thursday Quotes – Job Search – Keep Your Spirits Up

  1. If opportunity doesn’t knock, build a door Milton Berle
  2. Choose a job you love and you will never have to work a day in your life. Confucius 
  3. Getting fired is nature’s way to telling you that you had the wrong job in the first place. Hal Lancaster
  4. Fall seven times, stand up eight. Japanese Proverb
  5. Whenever you are asked if you can do a job, tell ‘em, ‘Certainly I can!’ Then get busy and find out how to do it Theodore Roosevelt
  6. The résumé focuses on you and the past. The cover letter focuses on the employer and the future. Tell the hiring professional what you can do to benefit the organization in the future. Joyce Lain Kennedy, Cover Letters for Dummies
  7. If you can’t communicate and prove your value, no one will see your value. Megan Pittsley
  8. If you don’t like something, change it. If you can’t change it, change your attitude. Maya Angelou
  9. Can’t find a job? Find an organization with a need you can fill. Then offer to fill it. Susan Ireland
  10. 10. Interviewing is like tasting wine: a first impression, the taste while drinking & the feeling left behind. @workcoachcafe on Twitter

Wendy Mason is a Life and Career Coach.  She helps people have the confidence they need to be successful at work and to change career while maintaining a good work/life balance. You can email her at wendymason@wisewolfcoaching.com

 

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Job Search – The Importance of Knowing What You Don’t Want

Job Search – The Importance of Knowing What You Don’t Want!

Over a very long career, I have advised and a coached lots of gifted, intelligent and ambitious people who were unhappy in their present job. I’ve learned lots of strategies for coping and for turning a negative short term experience into a long-term gain. I am writing today because there a has been a recurring theme. Most of those people had doubts before they took the job.

The exceptions were usually people whose circumstances changed. For example, they had a new boss they didn’t get on with or they had been through a badly handled outsourcing exercise where they ended up feeling like a victim. Sometimes, it was their own personal circumstances that had been changed. For example, a job with a lot of travelling was difficult to accommodate along side a very young family (for fathers as well as mothers).

For most, they knew when they took the job that it was wasn’t quite right.

Now, we have to be very realistic here. A good job is hard to find now. And jobs are very rarely the perfect fit. Common-sense says you apply the 80/20 principle in reverse. If 80 percent fits and the the 20 percent misfit is not in highly significant areas, most of the time that is good enough. But what about those highly significant areas?

Most people have a list of things they want in a job. This is in their head, if not committed to paper/laptop. (By the way, it is always best committed to paper/laptop, so that when you look through jobs specs you don’t miss something).

What many people forget to produce is a list of things that they don’t want. I’m not talking here about having just left a job where you had a bad experience, so now you swear never again to work with men or women with red hair.

Spending time on your real “no, noes” is time well invested. Make your list carefully and be very honest with your self. For example, if regular travelling really isn’t practical then put it on the list.

Some people do not want a job that is largely transactional (lots of processes to be applied), others do not want a role that requires a long period of quiet work on their own. Some people want to practice their technical and professional skills at a high level and will never feel truly fulfilled managing a team. You will find your list of don’t wants is not necessarily an exact mirror of what you do want. And there will be degrees of dislike.

To take the example above, “no regular travelling” may not mean no travelling at all. As you go through your list make sure you define what you don’t want carefully and then decide whether each item is of high, medium or low importance.

Now, of course, life and job search is all about compromise. Sometimes you may think that it is worth taking a job that hits so many buttons on your wanted list it balances out the buttons on your not wanted list. Please have a care, particularly with those items you marked as high. There really is a risk for you with those items. Only you can decide whether it is worth that risk. But please do it understanding the potential consequences.

Do not go into a job knowing you don’t want something and banking on your influence growing so quickly that you will be able to avoid it. For example, if a company has a long hours culture and you go in thinking it isn’t what you really want but over time you’ll find a way round it, you really are setting your self up for trouble and a potential loss of reputation. That particular item, like travel, is recurring theme.

Be careful, as well, with what companies say they want at interviews, if it is different to what they have said explicitly in their recruitment literature.

To take travel again, suppose the chair of the interviewing panel really likes you and wants you to join the company. All of sudden, you are being told the travelling isn’t so regular really and they are sure they can work round it. Now the hairs on your neck should start to rise. If it wasn’t so important, why did they bother to put it in their literature. If you are really interested, you need to ask lots of questions and, if you still have doubts, ask them to confirm in writing.

So I hope you will produce your “don’t want” list with the same enthusiasm or you apply to your “wants” list. If you need help. or you are already is a role you don’t like, please get in touch. As I’ve said above, I’ve worked with lots of other people just like you.

Wendy Mason is a Life and Career Coach.  She helps people have the 

confidence they need to be successful at work and to change career while maintaining a good work/life balance. You can email her at wendymason@wisewolfcoaching.com


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