A powerful pitch, one that resonates with your target audience, can give your job search a big boost in this challenging economy. Employers and networking contacts will be impressed when you concisely and engagingly describe what differentiates you from your competitors. Plus the process of creating your pitch is, on its own, well worth your time; the deeply self-reflective thinking that’s required will help you to sell yourself. You’ll need two versions of your pitch: More
Resume, LinkedIn, self-promo
When clients first contact me for résumé help, they often say things like “I heard that you should never…” or “I was told to always…” Most of these rules are just plain wrong, because they contradict the one Golden Rule of Résumé Writing: your “why you should hire me” message needs to jump off the page in the 15 seconds or less that your résumé is being reviewed (one study says your résumé is looked at for only 7.4 seconds).
Keeping the Golden Rule in mind, let’s look at the top four résumé myths that I’ve come across in my work with clients. More
If you’ve been out of work for a while, you may face a well-documented bias against the unemployed in your job search. But fear not; there are ways to easily fill the gap, preempting any potential uneasiness about your unemployment while reassuring employers that you’re current in your field. Here are three of those ways, followed by what to say when asked about an employment gap in an interview. More
For those over 50 and gainfully employed, a new study says you have a 56% chance that you’ll be let go before you’re ready to retire, risking substantial income loss. The study supports my own observations via client work that there is no real job security, only “career security.” In a sense employees are really all consultants.
But not to worry! Here’s a list of things you can do to both minimize the risk of an unwanted departure and set yourself up for a quick, positive transition if necessary. More
Business prospects or employers are probably searching on LinkedIn for someone like you. The single best way to ensure you’ll show up in their searches, and stand out from competitors, is to have the right profile “keywords.” These are the words or phrases that resonate. They’re used in search queries, and answer your target audience’s main question: “How can you help me?”
Profile keywords have benefits beyond boosting your LinkedIn search ranking. Since search engines like Google and More
While having a resume means you’re looking for a job, having a LinkedIn profile doesn’t send the same signal. As a result, many jobseekers think their profile needs to say that they are actively searching. Otherwise, how else would an employer know to contact them? So they’ll add phrases like “open to new opportunities” or “seeking a position in…”
When clients with stalled searches first contact me, they often see the cause as something beyond their control. They tell me “I’m too old (or young),” “I’m overqualified (or underqualified),” “there are no jobs,” “I’ve sent in countless applications with no response,” or “I don’t have enough (or the right) experience.”
While in some cases they may be right, most of the time I find that they face a different problem with a much easier solution. Below I’ve included the top seven ways you can jump-start your search, based on my experience of the real reasons for many stalled searches. More
The key to avoiding resume mistakes is to follow what I call the golden rule of resume writing: your “how I can help you” message needs to jump off the page in the 15 seconds or less that someone will look at your resume. The reader’s “no” or “maybe” decision is made so quickly that your key selling points really need to stand out. By contrast, the mistakes listed below make the reader work too hard to figure out how you can help them, or how you differ from the competition (this advice applies equally to your LinkedIn profile)
Whether you’re in sales, business development or a job search, effectively cold-calling “strangers” to get the meetings you seek is a crucial skill. For jobseekers, this is called accessing the “hidden” job market, where you’re developing new long-term relationships that can lead to opportunities.
When you cold-call, you have only roughly 20 seconds to gain their interest. At that point you need to give them an out or you risk making a bad impression; they may be about to run off to a meeting and keeping them on the phone would be a no-no. So if you haven’t interested them enough by then, you’re done. That’s why you need a 20 second pitch. More
When I first look at a client’s resume, I quite often see a list of bullet points that reflect only responsibilities. One of my clients, for example, an accountant, listed a bullet point that read: “Responsible for managing the monthly close.” After we discussed the impact she made through her management, we modified the text to read: “Managed the monthly close, reducing turnaround time by at least 30% while improving accuracy.” Do you feel the extra power More