Job Seeking – Conflicting Priorities

Job Seeking – Conflicting Priorities

Wendy Smith; Career Coach and author of The WiseWolf Job Search Pocket Book – order on Amazon

Job Seeking – Conflicting Priorities – when working with clients looking for a role. I usually ask them to work out a basic budget which covers how much money they would need to feed and house themselves and those who depend upon them. I ask them then to consider what resources and options are available to them to meet their financial commitments. Is there enough? If not, then earning more money quickly becomes the top priority. This might mean taking a part time or interim role in the short-term while they work on their career aspirations outside work.

But these conditions do not provide the optimum for successful job search.

Job Seeking – Conflicting Priorities – Looking for work is best treated as a full-time occupation

Looking for work is best treated as a full-time occupation. And it needs to be at the top of your agenda. Sometimes even for those with enough financial resources can find this a challenge. While friends and family accept the priority you give to your job when you are in work, they are less likely to accept that you have the same level of commitment to looking for a job.

“Why can’t you come along to support my charity event now you are at home all day?”

But if you want to have the best chance of finding that special new job that is just right for you, or even one close to it, taking time out to please friends and family may not be your best choice.

If you do have to compromise make sure it is for the very best of reasons. Yes, that does include your kids’ sports’ day. But recognise that anything less than top billing for your job search gives you a lesser chance of successful job search.

I wish all those starting out on or a continuing a job search every success. Remember working with a career coach can aid your job search success. If you have been out of the job market for a while, there will be new techniques to learn and some you need to refresh. From writing a modern CV to wooing them at the interview, you’ll find lots of tips on this blog, Try this link.”

Job Seeking - Conflicting Priorities
A concise and practical little workbook. For all who have the courage to go out and learn the new skills necessary to find a job now.

You can find more help for your job search in the “The WiseWolf Job Search Pocket Book: How to Win Jobs and Influence Recruiters.” Find this and my other books on my Amazon page at this link; http://ow.ly/BRSAL .

Working with a coach really can help you find job search success. Get in touch at the Facing a mid-career dilemmaemail address below – I offer a free half hour trial session by phone or Skype.

Wendy Smith, Career, life and Business Coach

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

 

The Job Interviewer’s Perspective

The Job Interviewer’s Perspective

 The Job Interviewer’s Perspective – a view from the other side of the table

I’ve spent a fair amount of time being interviewed but I’ve spent a lot more time on the other side of the table. As a civil servant I sat on old style promotion boards for very large departments. Sometimes that meant two and, occasionally, three weeks interviewing from nine in the morning until 5.30 at night. More recently, I’ve also done my fair share of recruitment interviewing and interviewing people on promotion to particular jobs. The experience has been enlightening.

I’ve learned for example that it isn’t only the candidates who need to prepare for the interview. Of course, like candidates, not all interviewers do prepare. But it wise to do so if you and your organization are likely to suffer the consequences of a poor decision.

The Job Interviewer’s Perspective – Performance Nerves

I didn’t expect so many interviewers to suffer from performance nerves before the interviews. Most interviewers are concerned to do a good a job and no one wants to look incompetent to candidates or fellow interviewers.

There is a unique internal dynamic to each interviewing panel. If the panel, and the candidates, are lucky there is an experienced panel chair who knows how to get the interviewers working together as a team. Chairing a panel requires leadership and management skills. Sadly, of course, many panels don’t have the benefit of good leadership. Individual panel members come to the interview with their own perspective on what is required. Good leadership means achieving a common view. It is almost inevitable though that there will be some differences of opinion.

What is it that marks someone out as special?

So, now, there you sit, having had a discussion with your fellow interviewers about the competencies required for this role and how you will test them. In comes the first candidate and you get to work. What is it that marks someone out as special?

Well, if you ask the right questions, you’ll have the facts you need about competence. But there is something else. What you remember afterwards are the candidates who engaged with you and showed a real interest in the work and the organization. And, of course, they had done their homework. If you are serious about being good interviewer, you prepare for the interview, so, naturally, you expect the candidates to show that they have done the same.

I wish all those starting out on or a continuing a job search this week every success.

Working with a coach really can help you prepare for an interview. Get in touch at the Facing a mid-career dilemmaemail address below – I offer a free half hour trial session by phone or Skype.
Wendy Smith, Career, life and Business Coach

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 Tips

Job Search Tips

Job Search Tips to Help You Stand Out

Wendy Smith; Career Coach and author of The WiseWolf Job Search Pocket Book – order on Amazon

Job Search Tips – applying for work? Here are some tips to help!

1. Read the job description. Oh so many people don’t do this. Or, they don’t do it with enough care. When you have read it decide carefully whether you can actually do the job before you apply.
2. Accept the gift of Key Words. Incorporate Key Words used in the job description into your resume and cover letter so that you make the right bells ring. But, again, do it with care – sprinkle rather than bombard.
3. Talk about what you have accomplished. Do this in your resume and during the interview. Illustrate answers with your achievements. Show how you can do the same good job for the potential employer.
4. Create your resume first even when filling in an online application form – then you can cut and post from it. Please check it very carefully for typos.
5. Research, research, research; the company, the people (you can used LinkedIn) and the position. If you are called for an interview, you need to able to show you understand what they are about and what they need.
6. Prepare, prepare, and prepare for the interview. Have a battery of descriptions of what you have achieved, and how, lined up to show how you fit their needs. Think through your attitude to past employers and emphasise the positive – never be tempted to be critical – they’ll worry you will do the same to them.
7. Remember your manners and send a thank you email afterwards offering more information if they need it. The thank you note may be the thing that marks you out if they are wavering.

You can find more help for your job search in the “The WiseWolf Job Search Pocket Book: How to Win Jobs and Influence Recruiters.” Find this and my other books on my Amazon page at this link; http://ow.ly/BRSAL .

Working with a coach really can help you find job search success. Get in touch at the Facing a mid-career dilemmaemail address below – I offer a free half hour trial session by phone or Skype.

Wendy Smith, Career, life and Business Coach

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

 

Asking For a Reference – Don’t be Diffident

Asking For a Reference – Don’t be Diffident

Asking for a reference – let us take as read that employers expect to be asked to give a reference.

Don’t feel diffident about asking others who can vouch for your work or your character. People usually feel flattered to be asked.

Asking for a reference – act with discretion

Don’t give their names until they have agreed. Then let them know each time you mention them. Tell them a little about the vacancy and why you think you are a good fit. Make it easy for them to help you.

Don’t feel offended if they say no.  Perhaps they just feel they don’t know you well enough.

Working with a coach really can help your job search. Get in touch at the Facing a mid-career dilemmaemail address below – I offer a free half hour trial session by phone or Skype.
Wendy Smith, Career, life and Business Coach

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

         

Think about why a company would be asking for your salary history

Your Salary History – Below is a link to a very useful post for the job seeker from  Jennnifer L. Beightley, MNM, CFRE which appeared yesterday on LinkedIn

What Should You Say When They Ask For Your Salary History?

… I want you to think about why a company would be asking for your salary history. They do this for two reasons, that I can tell. First, they want to use your salary history as a way to weed you out if you are asking far above what they are willing to pay, thinking that you overvalue yourself, or they want to weed you out if you are asking far below what they are willing to pay, thinking that you undervalue yourself and therefore are probably not up to snuff. Second, if you are close enough, and they like you, and you get to the offer stage, they will base the offer they will make to you on your previous salary.

So what is the problem with this?…”

Find Jennifer’s answer at this link;   http://www.linkedin.com/pulse/article/20141006135152-41404808-should-you-reveal-your-salary-history

Preparing to Network For Job Search

Preparing to Network

Preparing to Network For Job Search

Advice from Wendy Smith; Career Coach and author of The WiseWolf Job Search Pocket Book – order on Amazon

Preparing to Network – here are some tips  on how to prepare to network.

First make a list of all the people you know. They don’t need to be friends, or even acquaintances; you just need to have enough of a common link with them to initiate a conversation. If you can pick up the phone and call them, for any reason, they are potential networking contacts.

Prepare what you are going to say. You don’t want to just ring people up and say, ‘I work in HR. Do you know of any jobs going?’ Before you phone anyone, note down the specific details of what you’re looking for and exactly the kind of help you think they might be able to give you. Always start the conversation enquiring about them and their well-being and make sure this a convenient time to talk.

Contact the people on your list in a systematic way. Set yourself a goal. Maybe you’re happy to spend all afternoon on the phone to people and cross twenty off your list. Or maybe you just want to work through the list steadily, making three calls a day. If you find yourself losing enthusiasm, being less conversational and speaking more mechanically, it might be time to take a break.

Don’t be afraid to ask them for job leads. Make it easy for them to help you, ask them if they have any tips, leads or suggestions. Ask them if they know of any vacancies for a person with your skills. If they don’t, ask them to keep you in mind in case anything comes up. Most importantly, ask them if they can suggest anyone else you contact. Do they know someone else who might know about the kinds of jobs that you’re after? Do they know anyone who works for this or that organization that you’re interested in joining? If they can refer you to others, contact those other people and ask them the same questions.

Follow up contacts. Often people will tell you, ‘I’ll ask around and see what I can find out for you.’ Sometimes they do ask around; sometimes they forget almost immediately, or a crisis happens at work and they haven’t the time. If you don’t hear from them within a week or so, call them back to see if they’ve managed to find anything out.

Sometimes it seems as if no one will do anything for you or ask around on your behalf. It can be frustrating, but you should stay very polite and pleasant in your dealings with your contacts. After all, you’re asking them for a favour.

Follow up leads. After your initial networking efforts and research, you’ll probably have a long list of new people to try and make connections with. A phone call may be enough, or you might want to arrange a meeting with them to introduce yourself and ask them more specific questions about their company or industry.

Keep networking. Even after you’ve found a job, keep networking. Networking isn’t just for getting a job; it can help you do your job better, and it’s a way of being part of your community and society. The secret of networking is reciprocity. If there is something you can do for your contacts in return, make sure you do it! Never forget a favour done for you and if you can’t return to the person who did it, then make sure you do something for someone else.

Other resources for the job seeker

As a job seeker, there are lots of useful techniques to learn or to refresh. From writing a modern CV to wooing at the interview, you’ll find lots of tips in my handy little pocket book.

job search networking
A concise and practical little workbook. For all who have the courage to go out and learn the new skills necessary to find a job now.

A concise and practical little work book. For all who have the courage to go out and learn the new skills necessary to find a job now.

Find this and my other books on my Amazon page at this link; http://ow.ly/BRSAL

Remember working with a career coach can really help job search. Get in touch at the Facing a mid-career dilemmaemail address below – I offer a free half hour trial session by phone or Skype.

Wendy Smith, Career, life and Business Coach

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. 

Need help finding work, with problems at work, at home or with relationships? Book your free 30 minute, no obligation, trial coaching session with Wendy Smith now at this Link 

Job Search – Providing the Evidence

 Job Search – STAR Stories

I’ve written before about the value of STAR stories in your job search.  STAR stories are a great way of  recording your key achievements and demonstrating your competencies. With them you can provide evidence that you really do have, and know how to use, the competencies required for a particular role.

As a first step, some people create a timeline for their life– showing roles held at various times.  Then they flag up key achievements on the line. These don’t have to be restricted to formal work roles but those in the last 10 years should take priority.  I usually ask clients to choose the 10 they think are the most impressive.  For these 10 they then create STAR stories. For each one you include your job title and how long you were employed in the role, then set out briefly;

  • Situation – Describe the situation, the role and environment
  • Task – the challenge – the task you had to complete or the obstacle you had to overcome
  • Action – what action did you take and why. Include the competencies you called on and how you used them
  • Results – highlight the outcome, the value and benefits delivered – for example, savings made

I’ve mentioned before as well that you can use a summary of your STAR stories to add value to your CV and show what you will bring to any new employer! For the 10 stories above I usually suggest that for each you should produce about one A4 page of text. Of course you then need to summarise these down into short paragraphs for your CV – say three sentences on each with an emphasis on competencies used and benefits delivered.

The A4 summaries make great records for you portfolio.  You can use them to refresh your memory before interviews and to help you give evidenced based replies. They are also useful confidence boosters when feeling a bit daunted by a new challenge.

For the five most striking stories, I would recommend going on to fully develop them as case studies.  Think in terms of producing a magazine article, white paper, report or slide show. This will give you an opportunity to fully reflect on how you achieve and how to set yourself up for success in the future.  But if you have a website you can publish them as examples of what you can do. And of course you can now add them to your LinkedIn profile.

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.

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

Career Development: Personality Tests and a Useful Free Resource

 

Career Development: Personality Tests and a Useful Free Resource

 

A personality test is a questionnaire or other test designed to reveal aspects of your character or psychological makeup. They are used often by recruiters and by large organizations when making decisions about who to promote. But you can use these kind of tests yourself as part of your own career development and it always helps to know what recruiters may find.

The first personality tests were developed in 1920s and used by the armed forces. Since these early efforts, a variety of tests have been developed. Most notable are the Myers Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI), the MMPI, and a number of tests based on the “Five Factor” Model of personality.

Today, personality tests have become a multi-million dollar industry and they can be used in a range of contexts. These can include individual and relationship counselling as well as career planning, and employee selection and development.

Below is a link to a free test is based on MBTI approach to personality. Upon completion of the questionnaire, you can find out your 4-letter type formula according to Carl Jung’s and Isabel Briggs Myers’ theories.  As well as that, you will find an indication of the strengths of your preferences and the description of your personality type.

After that, if you put your 4 letter type into a search engine you should find lots of relevant information and resources on-line. For example, I am INFJ which suggests among other things an aptitude for writing and counselling/coaching apparently. 

Anyway try the test and if you would like to discuss your results please get in touch. Here is the link http://www.humanmetrics.com/cgi-win/jtypes2.asp  

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 

 

Personality Tests and a Useful Free Resource

Personality Tests and a Useful Free Resource

Personality tests – a personality test is a questionnaire or other test designed to reveal aspects of your character or psychological makeup. They are used often by recruiters and by large organizations when making decisions about who to promote. But you can use these kind of tests yourself as part of your own career development and it always helps to know what recruiters may find.

The first personality tests were developed in 1920s and used by the armed forces. Since these early efforts, a variety of tests have been developed. Most notable are the Myers Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI), the MMPI, and a number of tests based on the “Five Factor” Model of personality.

Today, personality tests have become a multi-million dollar industry and they can be used in a range of contexts. These can include individual and relationship counselling as well as career planning, and employee selection and development.

Below is a link to a free test is based on MBTI approach to personality. Upon completion of the questionnaire, you can find out your 4-letter type formula according to Carl Jung’s and Isabel Briggs Myers’ theories.  As well as that, you will find an indication of the strengths of your preferences and the description of your personality type.

After that, if you put your 4 letter type into a search engine you should find lots of relevant information and resources on-line. For example, I am INFJ which suggests among other things an aptitude for writing and counselling/coaching apparently. 

Anyway try the test and if you would like to discuss your results please get in touch. Here is the link http://www.humanmetrics.com/cgi-win/jtypes2.asp  

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 

 

Professional looking email address

Professional looking email address

Job Search – Do Your Email Address and Voicemail Message Help Your Job Search?

Professional looking email address – your email address and voice mail message are part of your personal brand. They send a message about you to potential employers. When you are applying to jobs you need to make sure that they say the right things.

You need to have a professional looking email address and a voice mail message that sounds warm and friendly but also business like. Jokey email addresses, and those which look like they are meant for a family, are not going to work to your advantage. Exactly the same thing goes for your voice mail message – this is not the time for that celebrity voice – nor friendly family greetings or jokes. An employer will consider an unprofessional voicemail message like this means you are not professional in your approach.

Here are some guidelines to getting it right!

Voicemail message

  1. Before you record your message think about what you are going to say – it can be a good idea to write your message down
  2. Include your name in the message, mention you’re unavailable to answer the phone. Then ask them to leave their name, number and message, and say you will get back to them as soon as possible. (Then do that, of course)
  3. Keep it simple. For example, “Hi, this is Simon Jones. I’m sorry I’m unable to take your call now, but please leave your name, number and message after the tone and I’ll return your call as soon as possible. Thank you.”
  4. Take time and trouble recording your message – find a quiet place with no background noise of any kind
  5. Speak clearly, and sound professional and polite when recording your greeting.
  6. If you want to be taken seriously avoid background noise including the sound of the family, joke messages and any kind of gimmick.

Email address

  1. Consider creating a new email address specifically for your job search. This will help to prioritize your job search emails.
  2. If possible, include your name in your email address, for example firstname.lastname@abc.com. That will make it much easier for a potential employer to find your emails in their inbox or folder.
  3. You could create an email address that corresponds to the work you do or your profession, for example simonjonesprojectmanager@abc.com if is appropriate.
  4. Make sure your email address is as simple, logical and easy to type as possible – long strings of numbers may well generate mistakes. That might mean you lose out on a precious job offer.

Your email address and voicemail message are key to your personal brand in your job search. Keep them clear, simple and professional. Then they will increase, not decrease, the chances of you being contacted by an employer.
In job search, paying attention to these small details can greatly improve your prospects of being hired.

I have started a new Job Search Group on LinkedIn where you will find lots of tips and other resources in due course – you can join it by clicking here 

Wendy is the The Career Coach – helping you to find fresh perspectives on your Job Search and Career.  Career Coach. Wendy, 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 

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

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