Blog

1.09.17
How to Start Fresh on Your Job Search This New Year
    Maybe you've been looking for a while and have become discouraged. Or maybe you were distracted by holiday responsibilities and festivities. In any case, you're in dire need of some motivation.   Here are 5 ideas for re-energizing your job hunt and starting off 2017 with a bang.   1. Focus more on networking than job postings. If there's nothing on the boards except the same old positions you've seen — and applied to — for months, it's time to look in a new direction. Consider everyone you talk with, from your neighborhood barista to old school buddies, as a potential link to an unadvertised job opening. Candidates who are personally referred have more credibility with hiring managers than unknown applicants from the job boards.   2. Widen your job target. Think outside the box of your desired career path. Your strengths may be equally well suited to related fields where opportunities are more plentiful. What you consider a detour on your route to success just...
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12.19.16
Your Secret Advantage: Job Hunt in December
    You've probably heard that nobody hires in December. So you might as well take the month off from your job hunting efforts and enjoy the holidays, right?   Wrong. The truth is that two out of three recruiters say they'll place as many candidates this month as any other month. In fact, it's much tougher to land a job in January than December.   Want some more reasons why December can be the most wonderful time of the year to job hunt? Check these out:   1. Beating out your competition. Everyone else has heard that same thing about December being a slow hiring month as you have, and decided to slack off looking for work. So if you get your resume out there now, you'll be competing with fewer other candidates for the job. Plus, it puts recruiters under more pressure to fill the position so you're more likely to have an easier, quicker path from first introduction to job offer.   2. Easier access to hiring managers. With many support staff away on holiday break...
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5.02.16
Making a Major Career Change: What I Wish I Knew Before
An office worker who became a baker. A sales executive who became a National Park ranger. An Army veteran who became a music agent. They all had different routes to success, but there are a few pieces of hard-earned wisdom they all offer to anyone thinking about switching to a radically different career.   1. Have a money cushion. Figure out how much savings you'll need, whether to start your own business, acquire necessary education or be unemployed while hunting for a position in your new field. And don't forget to allow for unexpected setbacks.   2. Make over your financial lifestyle. When people feel trapped in their current job, it's often because they need every penny of their income to support their debt and make-it-spend-it lifestyle. They just can't afford to take the lower pay that will come with starting over in a new career. Don't let this be you.   3. Do tons of research. A career may seem fun and glamorous from the outside, but what is it really like to...
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4.18.16
5 Reasons to Get a Side Gig (that Aren't About the Money)
    Being a moonlighter, or even an unpaid volunteer, can bring you more rewards than you may realize. Here are some reasons to expand your employment horizons.   1. It looks great on your resume. A side job allows you to acquire experience that your main job doesn't. And if it's with a charitable or community organization, it shows that you are a well-rounded and caring individual — the kind that any hiring executives in your future will love.   2. It lets you test the waters. If you're thinking about a complete change of career direction, a side gig can give you a taste of what the field is like before you take the plunge.   3. It makes you more efficient. Having a second job forces you to manage your time better; there's just no other way to get everything done by the end of the day. This is a skill that will benefit your life both on and off the job.   4. It makes new connections. For building a successful career — or social life — you can never have...
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3.28.16
3 Things I Wish I Knew Before My Interview
You thought you were well prepared. But once you got in there, you (and the interviewer too, no doubt) realized that some of your comments — or silences — showed a few bases you failed to cover.   1. I wish I knew more about the company. These days, you're expected to do some research on what the business does, who its customers and competitors are, and what sort of economic climate it's operating in at the moment. This will enable you to answer questions like, "How do you see yourself contributing to our company's success?" in a more relatable, solutions-oriented way. For example, you might highlight your experience with a technology you know the company has just implemented.   2. I wish I knew it was OK to ask questions. Don't just prepare answers. The interview is a two-way street and you need to learn whether you want to work there as much as they need to learn whether they want you. You both will be better assured of a good fit if you get a realistic picture of...
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2.29.16
If It's Too Good to Be True, Your Job Offer Is a Scam!
The growth of the online job market has made it easier than ever to find your dream job. Unfortunately, it has also made it easier for scammers to find you. Here are 3 red flags that what sounds like a great buy-in is really a big rip-off.   1. You need to pay money for something. The "employers" might say they need an advance for work permits, travel expenses or training. Even sneakier, they might send you a cashier's check for a huge amount, tell you to deduct the expenses and send back the rest. Trouble is, the check is forged and when it bounces your bank will take that money out of YOUR account. A cashier's check is no guarantee of safety. And run from anyone who wants you to deal in untraceable moneygrams.   Real employers will never ask for money up front, or try to obtain your confidential financial or personal information.   2. The compensation is unrealistically high. $500 to work one hour as a secret shopper? Yeah, right. Scammers will try to lure you by...
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2.22.16
5 Ways to Take Your Social Media Recruiting Skills to the Next Level
With more than 90% of recruiters now using the Internet to find, screen and hire job candidates, it's not enough anymore to just post your available position on the job boards. To attract the best talent, you need to turn social media into a recruiting advantage.   1. Work your company's own social media pages. Everyone who visits your Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter pages should be aware — and be able to share — that you have an opening to fill. Some large companies even maintain a separate page just for career opportunities within the organization.   2. Use the social media site's job postings. LinkedIn charges a fee for this, but it costs nothing to use your status box for a mass broadcast to all your connections that you are hiring. On Twitter, include a hashtag such as #job or #NAJ (need a job?) in your tweet to increase response from job seekers.   3. Do your own searches. The very best prospects might not even be looking for a job right now. Social media is a great...
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2.15.16
The Secret to Transitioning from an Intern to an Employee
Getting great experience is not the only — or even the best — reason for students and recent grads to go into an internship program. There's also the possibility that the company you're interning with will offer you a full-time job.   How can you maximize your chances of receiving that golden offer? Think of your internship as an audition for the job.   Act like you want to be. You want to be an employee with this company, so act like one. Dress professionally, be reliable, show teamwork and initiative — all the behaviors that prove you'd be an excellent permanent addition to the staff.   Go above and beyond. Show that you're flexible and eager to contribute by volunteering for projects outside of your regular duties. Create a niche for yourself doing something nobody else thought of or has time for, like expanding the company's social media presence. Make them realize that they can't get along with out you.   Communicate with your manager. If progress meetings aren't...
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1.25.16
Making a Career Bucket List
Why is setting career goals important? As you've probably heard many times before, it's pretty hard to get where you want to be if you don't have a route map of how to get there. But let's turn that saying around: you can't make a route map until you know where you want to go.   So let's make some career goals — ones that you can actually use as signposts along the way to your ultimate dream job.   1. Define the dream. This is where you put aside all thoughts of limitations, and write down what you really want to do in your work life. Even if it's something totally different from what you're doing now.   Think about: ·     What activities you enjoy and are good at. ·     What types of position you feel most comfortable with: being the leader or the follower, doing your own thing or contributing to an established mission. ·     Which is more important: soul satisfaction or salary.   2. Determine a timeline for achieving the goal. This is where you perform a...
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11.16.15
How to Use the Holidays to Your Advantage in the Job Hunt
Are we crazy? Isn't this the very worst time of year to be looking for work?   Actually, no, it isn't. Contrary to what most job seekers believe, the holidays can be one of the best times to make progress in your job search, and here's why.   It's all about networking — getting the word out that you're searching for that next great opportunity. The holidays give you the perfect excuse to work your contacts without seeming pushy or needy. After all, 'tis the season for getting in touch and catching up on each other's lives. Your current employment situation would just come up naturally in the course of these activities.   Greeting cards/emails. People are still impressed to receive a beautiful card with a personalized, handwritten note in the mail, but if you're short on time an e-card can also be very effective.   Social media. Post good wishes for the holidays and a short "what's happening with me" report on the social media pages of people who could provide...
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