Monday, August 29, 2016

Networking Your Way Into a New Job


Is networking your way into a new job the best approach? When it comes to questions like this my answer is always "it depends." I don’t see the world as black and white.  To me there are always gray areas.

There is so much black and white/one-size-fits-all advice on job hunting. I see people taking this advice to heart and not getting the results they thought they would get.

Standard Advice says:  Network your way into the hiring manager. Don’t go through Human Resources.  Use social media sites and all of your networking connections to find the name and contact information for the person who is ultimately hiring for the position you want.  Then, contact that person directly and ask for an informational interview.

That advice actually works, sometimes.  Other scenarios I’ve seen have not worked well at all.

In some cases, I’ve seen the job seeker succeed in getting the information.  They have bypassed all the gatekeepers including Human Resources and are in direct contact with the hiring manager.

Depending upon the size and configuration of the company, they may have just succeeded in eliminating any chance of getting the job.

If it’s a very small company, the Human Resources person may be related to the owner/president of the company.  The HR person may have more influence than you think.

If it’s a very large company, the Vice President of Human Resources may have the ultimate signature authority on the position.

Either way, they won’t be smiling favorably on someone who didn’t bother to submit a resume through the proper channels.

"Informational interviews" have become synonymous with trickery.

What used to be a good way for someone to find out if a career field, company culture or company mission was the right place for them, has turned into a sneaky way to get a job interview.

So many people use a request for an informational interview for the wrong reasons now; it is increasingly rare for anyone to agree to it.

While this method of job hunting may still work in some situations, be very careful who you bypass, step on or step over on your way to that perfect job.

Remember, even if you get the job, you will have to work with the people you avoided, alienated and in general ticked off.
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Author: Nancy Baughman President (nancybpres), Author at Calm Water Business Partner, LLC. She has over twenty years of general management experience in human resources, operations, marketing and finance, predominantly with start-ups and small to mid-size companies.

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Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Stages of Grief – Job Loss


I thought everyone knew about the stages of grief.  When you lose someone you love, you go through five stages of grief.  Well, that’s the theory at least…
Some people go through five, some people skip a stage or two and some people get stuck in one stage and can’t seem to move on.
Why am I talking about this?  Because I see these same stages in people who have lost their job.
They are mourning and everyday I see and hear job candidates who are obviously in a “stage” and need to get through to the “acceptance” part because interviewing in any of the other stages is pointless.
Elisabeth Kubler-Ross outlined the stages of grief for those facing their own death as:
1. Denial
2. Anger
3. Bargaining
4. Depression
5. Acceptance
From a job interview perspective, this is what they look/sound like and why it’s not a good idea to go into an interview with any of these attitudes:
Denial – When asked why you left your last job.  The correct response is not – “I was laid off, but I’m sure they will call me back any day now.”
Why should I hire you, you’re not really looking for a job.  You expect to go back to your former employer.
Anger – You can guess where I’m going with this one.  The answer to why you left your last job should not include any four letter words or expressions that would tempt your grandmother to hand you a bar of soap to use to wash out your mouth.  Also any description of your former employer other than glowing is going to be perceived in a negative way.
Bargaining – I don’t see much of this one in the recruiting world.  I don’t doubt it goes on privately.  Most of what I’ve read and heard about the bargaining stage includes talking with a higher power.
Depression – Oh boy!  Nothing screams “don’t hire me” like someone dragging themselves into an interview, staring at their feet, hair not combed, clothing rumpled, mumbling answers to questions and even (yes, I’ve seen this) crying.
Acceptance – Why did you leave your last job?  The company hit a financial rough patch and had to let some people go.  Unfortunately, one of them was me.  But, I understand why they had to do it.   My time there was a great experience, but now I’m ready for a new and different challenge and am looking for my next great employer.
If you don’t recognize where you are emotionally, ask someone who knows you well.  I bet they can pick out a stage almost instantly.  They will have to be a true friend though because it’s a tough thing to tell someone and even tougher to hear.
I’ve seen people get stuck in Anger for years and not understand why they never get a job offer.  I’ve seen others go straight to the Acceptance stage the day after they’ve been laid off.  Everyone is different.  Don’t be too hard on yourself!
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Author: Nancy Baughman President (nancybpres), Author at Calm Water Business Partner, LLC. She has over twenty years of general management experience in human resources, operations, marketing and finance, predominantly with start-ups and small to mid-size companies.

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Monday, June 27, 2016

My Favourite Quotes for Job Seekers


1. "Success consists of going from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm."

2. "Don’t be afraid to fail. Don’t waste energy trying to cover up failure. Learn from your failures and go on to the next challenge. It’s OK to fail. If you’re not failing, you’re not growing."

3. "Take risks: if you win, you will be happy; if you lose, you will be wise."

4. "Success doesn’t come to you, you go to it."

5. "It is never too late to be what you might have been."

6. "Combined with passion and perseverance, identifying and leveraging your strengths and aptitudes is the key to any career path."

7. "When one door closes, another opens; but we often look so long and so regretfully upon the closed door that we do not see the one which has opened for us."

8. "Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life."

9. "Whatever you can do, or dream you can... begin it; boldness has genius, power and magic in it."

10. "While most are dreaming of success, winners wake-up and work hard to achieve it."

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