Here’s A Simple Way to Be More Influential, Persuasive, and Convincing.

And in the process, disarm one of the most common argument strategies.

Do you keep losing Arguments you think you should win? Here is a simple way to be more influential, persuasive, and convincing, and in the process, disarm one of the most common argument strategies.

In The Art of Being Right: 38 Ways to Win an Argument, 17th-century philosopher Arthur Schopenhauer proposed that: It would be best to give your opponent an opposite counterproposition to make them accept a proposition.If the contrast is glaring, the opponent will accept your proposition to avoid being paradoxical.

The key is to recognize a glaring counterproposal for what it is: an attempt, whether intended or not, to shift the argument away from logic and reasoning — away from its original form — to an either/or proposition that has nothing to do with the initial disagreement.But you must indicate that you agree with the counterproposition offered to get around it. (To paraphrase President Eisenhower, agree to what you agree on first, then work through what you don’t agree on.)

The critical lesson is this: just because you agree with someone that a situation exists does not mean you have to automatically agree on how to fix, or overcome, or improve that situation. Explore the entire article by Jeff Haden at Inc.com on How to Better Influence, Persuade, and Convince. @jeff_haden https://www.inc.com/jeff-haden/keep-losing-arguments-you-think-you-should-win-a-simple-way-to-be-more-influential-persuasive-convincing.html via @Inc

What should your approach to the job application process be?

Admittingly, creating job applications is very time-consuming, repetitive, and boring. And what’s worse, there are times when all you are getting for your diligent work is rejection letters. So, what can you do to make the best use of your limited job-searching time?

Here are five recommendations that could make a difference and improve your results.

  • Be very clear on why you are leaving your present position and what type and level of new position you seek.  Maybe you are happy with your current role but unhappy with your current employer, then it is possible that you are not sure you must leave, and your search is a want, not a need.
  • Don’t create “just in case” or exploratory applications. Your reason for leaving and the urgency to act will influence how you approach applying to jobs, which will influence the type of responses you receive. So be sure that you are genuinely job searching and not exploring your options.
  • Research the job, compensation, and company before you apply. Then apply only to the requisitions that match your career goals. Do not create “why not or just incase case applications!” Try to ascertain whether the company’s expectations for success in the role align with your ability to deliver and be a success in the role based on your skills, career expectations, and personal strengths.
  • Do not apply to jobs based on the job title alone. Job descriptions for positions with similar job titles can vary tremendously. So it is important that you read the entire job description carefully. Compare the jobs you are interested in with similar titles to decide on a proper match. Focus on companies and jobs where there is symmetry between your value system and the company’s values.
  • Above all, create fewer applications and more complete applications. Creating an untidy or unfinished application can doom your applications at the company for the current job you are applying to and any other position you may apply for in the future.
  • Job searching is very boring and time-consuming, too, so be prepared to spend considerable time doing it to achieve the desired outcome. Try to maintain a light, thoughtful approach throughout the process since job searching is probably the most un-fun thing you will do this year.

How to prove you are the right fit for the JOB?

Extensive experience as a Career Strategy Consultant, recruiting operations manager, writer, and developer of development of career tools has taught me that our ability to hire and retain the right consultants (or employees) and nurture them to value their talents, explain their skills, and offer resolution suggestions, is necessary to the successfully delivery of projects, and it can enhance employee retention.

In addition, teaching consultants and employees how to present their interests and career goals is an essential skill and one that is necessary to achieve one’s career goals. Working for oneself or developing one’s own business takes the fine-tuning of employee talents to another level.

Success also depends upon choosing my clients well, which helps to ensure that the job is done correctly and delivered in the agreed timeframe. Extensive experience in management roles at major corporations, small and large consultancies, and my current position helps. Writing a resume is more than cataloging skill sets and expertise. The resume is an advance picture of the person who will attend the interview. Hence all of our resume services include interview preparation.

In addition, to providing Resume Writing and Interview Preparation to jobseekers, my current projects include training managers in interview practice. These projects allow me to continue to learn from managers regarding what they seek in a resume and their goals when interviewing candidates. This combination of manager and jobseeker client interactions informs and continually updates my resume writing and interviewing training skills.

Where candidates often go wrong is thinking that they need to sell themselves at the interview. The resume has already done that, and since no one interviews an unqualified candidate, your job at the interview is to validate the fit. Let us help you by creating a resume that will parse well on ATS’ and work with you on interview preparation, so you can validate that you are the right choice/fit for the role for the team.

Updating your resume? Are you a Storyteller, Bottom-up, Scalper, or a Renovator?

Some people treat their resumes like career autobiographies, into which they keep adding more info over time. Some assume the longer the resume, the better, or they utilize the pay-by-the-word look, using the tiniest font in jumble-length paragraphs, all crammed into a single page.

Taking either of these approaches to your resume can result in an unbalanced picture of your work history. Neither of which is going to impress employers.

Jobseekers’ approach to writing their resume can be broadly broken down into three categories.

·       The  “storyteller,” i.e., the job seeker who never removes anything from their resume? They will add some information occasionally, but they never remove anything. This “improvement by addition technique” may be a sound approach to topping off your tank before a long road trip; but it is not a great approach to enhancing your resume.

·        The “bottom-up” resume writer? Do you start from your earliest jobs, about which you add lots of detail since those WERE the fun days, right? The resultant resume is bottom-heavy and weighted towards your early career and skill sets that may longer be as valuable as they once were.

·        Or are you a “scalper?” This resume writer ruthlessly removes anything on their resume that is not current and relevant. The trouble with this hard-nosed approach to past experiences is that it obscures the interviewers’ view of your overall career-building climb or your diversity of skills and achievements.

My recommended approach is the wholesome but strategic “Resume Renovator” upgrade tactic i.e., building your new resume and career profile by striking a balance between detailing recent experience and achievements while including valuable prior experiences.

The resume renovator will take this approach each time they prepare their resume. They will detail and acknowledge their long and fruitful career but may edit out some of the early jobs entirely. They also consider the types of jobs they are applying for and align their resume and experience to validate their suitability for the roles.

How do you approach updating your resume? Are you a Storyteller, Bottom-up, Scalper, or a Renovator? 

Mid-Career Resume Writing Services: https://py.pl/154h07

Here’s why Asking Process Questions at the end of an interview is so very important.

So you have sailed through what seems like an easy interview, now you are at the close, and the Interviewer asks: “Do you have any questions for me?” Your brain screams – “Say what!” And your mouth volunteers, “Not really.” Your eye contact with the Interviewer relays that you have missed the seal-the-deal, closing shot. Oops!

End-of-interview questions should focus on organizational issues rather than the project or technical questions you may have already discussed with the Interviewer. Asking open-ended questions will help you gauge whether this position is a good career fit for you at this point in your career.

Why is asking key process questions at the end of an interview is so very important?

Asking thoughtful process questions shows that you are interested and committed to success in the role. And this can set you apart from the other candidates.

It is also an excellent opportunity to learn about possible internal barriers to success and problems you may encounter as you seek success in the role BEFORE starting the job, especially if the job is in a different industry!

A good sample question: “What are the challenges someone hired into this role expect to face?” The Manager’s answer will show the following:

1.   Is the manager aware of what it takes to succeed in this role?

2.   Is this manager offering a career advancement opportunity, simply a job, or are you interviewing for a disposable role?

3.   Does the manager’s response highlight how they will work with you to ensure your success?

4.   Are there departmental or interdepartmental politics that you will have to battle against?

5.   Are there technical issues that may make it initially challenging to perform your role effectively?

6.   Are there actions in place to correct these deficiencies?

7.   How involved is the Manager in mentoring and developing their staff and department?

8.   Does the manager mention others who might help you integrate into the existing team? 

These open-ended questions will also help you gauge Manager’s interest in your candidacy for the position. It is their opportunity to sell you the role, the organization, and the management style.

These questions can show that you are interested in success in the role and not just landing a new job. Master these end-of-interview questions, and you may level the performance field if you fumbled a question during the earlier part of the interview.

How would you describe your team at work?

Are your team members inward idea-processing decision makers, or are they outward idea-processing? Full disclosure here, one of the reasons I love webinars is that outward idea-processing people usually attend them. So you hardly need to say a word if you have a few of them in a webinar.

But trouble can occur when there are abundant outward-processing people in a meeting, and the inward-processing people need help to hang on to their ideas, which can leave the impression that there is consensus when there is not.

The fact is that while some colleagues prefer to process their thoughts and ideas through conversation and group banter (outward processing), others may choose to remain quiet in meetings (inwardly processing) their opinions. So, if management is keen to hear about viable ideas, it helps if they know how their key players communicate once presented with a problem.

A colleague who constantly interrupts others might appear rude or even a bully by others, while the excited offender thinks they are conveying noisy enthusiasm for an idea. The challenge for management is to determine if there is a true consensus or have the noisy outward processing folks shut the inward thinkers down.

The challenge is to figure out which way the majority of the team exchanges ideas and to assure the inward-processing teammates that their opinions matter and that you would like to hear from them.

Team friction can happen when teammates have different ways of processing and expressing information. This dissonance can have a disruptive effect on the productivity of individual members, but it can also disrupt the harmony of the entire team.

An essential interview question candidates should ask managers is how the manager would prefer them to communicate ideas and how the team communicates with each other. It is a question that candidates regularly need to ask in the interview.

Managers should also ask candidates they are considering for a position. Since woe is on you if you end up managing, working for, or with a “do you have a minute” five times a day outward processing teammate, lead, or manager, and you are an inward processing problem solver.

But if your exchanges with a colleague or team lead often drift into what appears to be bullying, please address it with management as soon as possible. Your colleague may be an outward idea-processing person and unaware that quiet thinking is an option to explore.

XAre your team members inward idea-processing decision makers, or are they outward idea-processing?

Full disclosure here, one of the reasons I love webinars is that outward idea-processing people usually attend them. So you hardly need to say a word if you have a few of them in a webinar.

But trouble can occur when there are abundant outward-processing people in a meeting, and the inward-processing people need help to hang on to their ideas, which can leave the impression that there is consensus when there is not.

The fact is that while some colleagues prefer to process their thoughts and ideas through conversation and group banter (outward processing), others may choose to remain quiet in meetings (inwardly processing) their opinions. So, if management is keen to hear about viable ideas, it helps if they know how their key players communicate once presented with a problem.

A colleague who constantly interrupts others might appear rude or even a bully by others, while the excited offender thinks they are conveying noisy enthusiasm for an idea. The challenge for management is to determine if there is a true consensus or have the noisy outward processing folks shut the inward thinkers down.

The challenge is to figure out which way the majority of the team exchanges ideas and to assure the inward-processing teammates that their opinions matter and that you would like to hear from them.

Team friction can happen when teammates have different ways of processing and expressing information. This dissonance can have a disruptive effect on the productivity of individual members, but it can also disrupt the harmony of the entire team.

An essential interview question candidates should ask managers is how the manager would prefer them to communicate ideas and how the team communicates with each other. It is a question that candidates regularly need to ask in the interview.

Managers should also ask candidates they are considering for a position. Since woe is on you if you end up managing, working for, or with a “do you have a minute” five times a day outward processing teammate, lead, or manager, and you are an inward processing problem solver.

But if your exchanges with a colleague or team lead often drift into what appears to be bullying, please address it with management as soon as possible. Your colleague may be an outward idea-processing person and unaware that quiet thinking is an option to explore.

Does your recent career read like a how-to guideline for successful Job Hopping? 

Does your recent career read like a how-to guideline for successful job hopping? Have you taken on a variety of well-paying short-term positions within a short time because, and let’s be frank, they paid well, and you could WFH? 

Have you taken advantage of the fluidity in the recent job market to job skip and accept diverse and unrelated roles in various industries for short periods? Or have you taken several non-related, short-term assignments? In that case, you may risk being viewed as someone bereft of loyalty and sticking power.

But, there are positive and negative aspects to this. Some hiring managers may be reluctant to interview you since they view job hoppers as not settling, getting bored quickly, and wanting to move on without giving each job a good go. So, be thoughtful and remember that there needs to be a consistent back story to your job travels.

On the positive side, job hopping can help you build skills, among them the very valuable skill of adaptability. This is the ability to perform well in new situations and deal with change and stress more productively. This shows resilience, confidence, and adaptability to change.

How to explain job skipping on a resume or an initial interview call?

1. Emphasize your credible and verifiable achievements: 
Concentrate on what you learned and achieved at each assignment, the transferable skills gained or enhanced, and the benefits you can bring to a new organization by utilizing these skills.

2. Combine similar roles in your narrative or omit some roles entirely:
Projects or roles with similar job titles may be combined under one heading. That will downplay the fact that the roles have been at different companies for short periods and bolster your point that there was a plan.

3. Omitting some roles:
Short-term roles that are not relevant to the position you seek can be omitted because they do not enhance your suitability for the job, nor are they relevant to the interview. Plus, discussing unrelated facts in an interview is rarely helpful.

4. Dates of employment:
Regarding employment dates, try using the years only and forgo adding the months. Using years only also lessens red flag alerts and screen-out issues. 

Above all, be prepared to explain your reasons for job hopping honestly and openly. This will work out better in the long run, especially if your reasons for changing companies were due to circumstances beyond your control, such as a layoff, relocation, or company closure; companies know that many good people are being and have been and are being let go. So be honest.

Why the key to a successful career may be our relationships with others.

The feeling that we must make up for time lost by job-related turmoil, or lay-offs, has heightened the need to rethink our careers. This career-changing hustle has pushed every working man, woman, manager, and manipulator to accept that a job change should future-proof your career.

The need to constantly keep an eye on the possibility of a career blip has made it difficult, if not impossible, for many careerists to use the most effective career management and career enhancement strategy, which involves developing career enhancement relationships with other people. 

Given the general feeling that everyone is now a competitor, people find it difficult to reach out to colleagues. But the fact is that people will help you, but it’s up to you to reach out to them.

Improving the quality and frequency of our interactions with others who are also building their careers increases our visibility. It can positively influence their perceptions of us as professionals as we share insights and reinforce our reputation as colleagues to be recommended for a job opening with their firm or as someone who can be recommended to others.

Participating in deliberate advice and feedback sharing can help us and others confirm that they are on the right track in their career moves. It can also educate us on the areas where we need to develop or gain further experience. Although many people are back at the office, far too many continue to maintain their WFH isolationist this is my space approach to interacting with their colleagues. As career strategists, we hear from clients that it is currently more difficult to share or hear of potential opportunities.

If change is the impetus to encourage inertia, a short-term contract role that isn’t your first choice may be worth consideration. Future employers will appreciate that sometimes individuals need to be pragmatic yet adaptable to ensure they can pay their bills. You will still need to show enthusiasm and perform well regardless of the interim role you undertake while continuing to look for your ideal role.

Share your career successes with your former colleagues, others in your professional circle, and decision-makers. Above all, try not to beat yourself up about accepting a lesser role temporarily and whether it will affect your career prospects; this thinking is exhausting and defeating. Try to demonstrate a willingness to learn and adapt; ultimately, you will be more employable and more likely to be retained. 

Happy Thanksgiving

We at Franklin Paterson Company Inc. are thankful for so much this Thanksgiving.
We are incredibly grateful for your support, good counsel, excellent comments on our posts, and continued friendship. We appreciate you. Here’s wishing you and yours a wonderful Thanksgiving day, and all the best for the upcoming holidays.

Don’t try to change everything when embarking on your job search.

Most folks seek to change everything when embarking on a job search process. Many believe they will be more satisfied in a different work environment, company, industry, or even a different location. We seek a significant definable change as we embark on our job search, all the time hoping our change everything approach will fix what is wrong in our current work situation!

We also tend to dwell on the negative things that affect us and overlook good things. If you are anxious about a change in your career, here are a few things to consider before leaving your current position.

We often fail to go granular in our research of why the current job or the company is no longer a fit. For example, we do not consider the employment conditions currently working for or against us.

1.      Is it our discontent with the team politics or undercurrents of general team dissatisfaction? Or is it workload stress, undelivered promotions, low wages, unaligned vision/goals, or work-life balance? Is the lack of management support, training, or the increasing cost of benefits causing your unhappiness in your current role?  

 2.      It is a good idea to look at all these factors to ascertain the root of your frustration. Use what you learn in looking at these factors as benchmarks as you review and interview for new positions.

 We often forget to do a self-evaluation. Are you a top performer? If not, seek feedback from your supervisor or trusted teammates regarding your competencies. Then brush up your skills with the needed training or classes to beef up the skills that could be key for securing your next position.

 Here are a few other areas to consider.

 1.      Investigate the option of job searching within your current company. Job searching within your company makes good sense—research job opportunities within your company, its branches, or sister companies. There might be an opportunity at another local branch in other cities or states. Could this be the case for your organization?

 2.      Consider going forward in your career by going backward. How about job searching within one of your former companies? Is there support from former colleagues for your new adventure? This is vital, as many seek their next job through secure networking with former colleagues.

 3.      Plan out your internal and external job search; both can run in parallel. Develop and write down your goals, actions, and feedback steps. Track and evaluate your progress in these areas, and make reasonable adjustments to the “got to get out of here” timeline.

 4.      The job search process is often overwhelming, time-consuming, and sometimes devoid of favorable feedback. Breaking your job search into steps will help you identify and evaluate your progress or possible stumbling blocks.

 5.      Do a bi-weekly assessment of your outcomes, and commit to a bi-weekly review of your job search status. Give your job search quality time, and remember to nurture the other parts of your life, family, volunteer work, and hobbies.

Now may also be the time for an attitude adjustment. It is crucial to assess and monitor your attitude. Be methodical and deliberate in your job search and fight the temptation to grab the first reasonable offer because you are anxious to leave and are concerned about missing your completion deadline. And although difficult to admit, you may need to accept that while you are ready to make the job or career change, the emotional investment of your nearest and dearest may be bordering on ambivalent, disinterested interest.

Finally, be prepared to discover that job searching and career exploration can be a lonely business, so be kind, supportive and nuturing towards yourself as you hit unexpected bumps. As Neil Barringham, Mental Health Expert and Manager of A Place to Belong, once said: “The grass is greener where you water it.” 

The Stay Where You Are, Job Search.

So things are not going well at your current job. You have outgrown your current role. And besides, every day, a new happenstance threatens to add to your six grey hairs (yes, you counted them last weekend, and you are now up from five). Should you indulge yourself and just quit or continue to work at this dreadful place as your job search?

No easy remedy exists for hapless employees who quit their current company before they have lined up a superior replacement job. When it comes to job leaving, you had better have a plan and an exit strategy, or there will be no meaningful sympathy for the rash move job-quitter. So, before handing in your notice, consider if there is any unexplored potential in your current job; that could make it worth your while to stay. Well, at least until you have formulated a proper leaving plan! 

 Here are a few other things to consider. Start with arranging a career status chat with your boss. Hiring is costly in terms of energy, time, and money, so companies are keen to keep their existing teams intact. Your manager will likely be receptive to meeting with you to work out remedies to help re-fashion your job in a new way that reflects your career interests. Talk to your boss about the possibilities for enriching your role and adding to your experience.

  Very few people use all of their skills in their current job. Consider what under-utilized skills or potential you have that could be of benefit to your current employer. Talk to your boss about the possibilities for augmenting your current role, and remember to ask a lot of diagnostic questions to ascertain whether your manager is in support of your goal.

The company will benefit from using more of your talents. You can build experience in the specialty areas that interest you, which you can use as leverage when applying for a new role later. Consider a lateral move to a different department. An internal move will enable you to leverage your existing knowledge of the business, its processes, and its culture. Besides a new learning opportunity, an internal move can create another vertical advancement ladder. 

 Try to ensure a smooth transition and minimize the disruption to your current team. You can do a range of things to accommodate the handover professionally. That includes completing ongoing projects, working out the project priorities with your manager, leaving clear documentation, or training your successor in processes or software.

If your only avenue for career advancement option appears to be the exit door, after considerable thought. I would recommend that you seek the help of a Career Strategy Coach. To be clear, Career Strategy is not the same as Interview Preparation or Interview Coaching, job search coaching processes that focus on answering fact-based interview questions precisely. The downside is that these performance-directed coaching processes often turn anxious, goal-oriented candidates into boring talking heads and often obfuscate the candidate’s personality.

A Career Strategy Coach can advise you on your relevant referential and replicable skills that will enhance the possibility of success in your job search. And help you fine-tune your interviewing tactics to ensure that you convey the complexity of your experience and your determined long-term goals to interviewers. Your coach can also help you to clarify and adjust your career decision-making criteria so you do not give answers at the interview that may succeed in getting you the job but do not convey your career goals.

Your Career Strategy Consultant can help you help change your interviewing approach from a spirited tennis match to a thoughtful, strategic, and goal-oriented chess match!

Why a Career Review Just Makes Sense

It is apparent to many that the longer you have been in a job, the harder making the break is likely to be. In addition, the longer you take to decide to make the change, the more aggravated and frustrated you will become.

This state of flux can impact your life, and it is most challenging for our nearest and dearest! Some of us will change our jobs ten times or more in our careers.

Many people will change their industry focus and skill specialties at least three times in their working lives. It is now accepted that people will change jobs every few years. Times have changed.

What is the starting point if you are in a career funk?
Do a conscientious review of where you are in your career to identify your reasons for wanting the change, what needs to change, and why.

1.   Is it simply the company’s business approach, hiring practices, or culture no longer in sync with your values or your way of thinking or working?

2.   Is it the job itself? Are you unhappy with the work and lack of challenge? Or are you no longer getting the buzz or job satisfaction you used to?

3.   Do you believe you are being taken advantage of or not getting the recognition you deserve?

4.   Are you seeking to step up the career ladder but can’t see the way forward since your growth ladder has stopped mid-air? Or the company leadership has been in their spot on the ladder forever.

5.   Maybe it’s money? But since you started at your position so very long ago, even with regular annual raises, you are significantly behind industry recommendations for your industry.

CHECK OUT YOUR OPTIONS

1.   Figure out what is holding you back from making the change. Are you unable to maximize your full potential since you have gained all the experience possible at your current company?

2.   Ramp up your networking. It can pay dividends if you are a recognized expert or an up-and-coming professional in your field. What have you got to lose?

3.   Are your career goals at odds with your values? Because to change, you must change yourself. A career change often involves a life change!

4.   Decide whether it should be a company or an industry specialty change. Or is starting your own company an option?

5.   Engage with a Career Strategy Consultant for direct and personalized help or attend webinars that discuss the topic to ascertain your options.

Have you had a significant shift in your value set, triggered by events in your life and your attitude to life? Do something about it!  

Dealing with Irascible Managers or Co-Workers

I have worked with and for quite a few problematic characters throughout my long career. Some are still friends and confidants, and a few continue to be valued as mentors.

Many of these irascible managers or co-workers lack social grace and a sense of control, so they cannot communicate well under stress. They also appear to forget that a timely apology can be a fallback position.

You see them coming from a mile, so the choice becomes whether you rise to and meet the verbal challenge or obfuscate. But, since nobody wins in these confrontations, you seldom try to deal with it.

They are unaware of how their behavior impacts others because they need to elevate themselves above others in a group situation. They do not hesitate to exploit their leadership role by insulting others because they are often insecure and quick to attack to assert their leadership.  

So they seek to maintain their position in the hierarchy through criticism, humiliation, and camouflaged insults, in a kind of unconscious narcissistic way.

The second group of tough characters are those with narrow interests and vapid sympathies. These folks say and do the same cruel things regularly as if on cue. I worked for one manager who lobbed the same petty insults at every group meeting but never in one-to-one meetings.

The worse part is that you feel bad for the manager. And deliberately avoid connecting with the “Oh No, Not Again” apologetic looks directed your way by the other team members. You think, “well, somebody has got to pull up the weeds.” Feeling all the while like the embarrassed parent of a preschooler misbehaving in public!

There is a stunning lack of creativity when someone overuses the same petty insult. If you must be regularly petty, try to be creative and offer variety. Unable to rise to the occasion, then stop it, the exercise of watching a manager or colleague try to diminish a coworker publicly is tiresome and embarrassing for everybody!

The Unexpected Reference Call.

Have you received an unexpected request or a call for a reference for a friend or former colleague? You knew your friend was thinking about job searching, but you wonder, how could they put you in such an awkward situation? You do a credible job, but you believe your responses lacked actual content.

This reference checking incident jolts you into thinking – how are YOU sorted for current and relevant references to validate your qualification and suitability for your dream job should your dream interview arise?

Most employers will request references when the company is seriously interested in you as a potential hire. So we should all be prepared to provide a list of employment references who are knowledgeable regarding your expertise in the qualification and skills required for the job you are seeking.

Remember to get your references in order before you need them. It will save time scrambling to put together a list at the last minute. Quickly forwarding your references upon request to a potential employer can help you secure the job offer.

Once you start the interview process, be mindful of informing your references, and unless you have their permission, do not use someone as a reference.

1) Asking for a Reference: Update the potential reference giver about the type of positions you are applying for, so they can tailor their recommendation to fit your circumstances.

2) Whom to Ask for a Reference: Former bosses, co-workers, customers, vendors, colleagues, and college professors are good references. Recent graduates may use a personal connection.

3) Company Reference Policy: Some employers will not provide skills verification references. They may only provide a job title, dates of employment, and salary history. So find alternative references.

4) Create a reference list of three to four people, containing their name, title, and email in addition to the telephone number. When emailing the reference list, paste the list into the email rather than sending it as an attachment.

5) Request a Reference Letter from soon-to-be former colleagues: Create a file of recommendations from people you may not necessarily be able to track down later.

6) Keep Your References Up-to-Date: Let your references know where your job search stands and update them on who might be calling for a reference.

A prospective employer should ask your permission before contacting your references. And, it is perfectly acceptable to say that you are not at ease with the company contacting your current employer, and offering a list of alternative references available.

Is it time for a Career Self-Assessment?

The reality has set in. You are getting career restless. You are not bored, but Mondays are tough! By Wednesday, you are back in the groove; But for some reason, “thank God it’s Friday” is now the week’s longest, most challenging day. How do you restart your job love-engine?

Don’t start by simply updating your resume. If you do, you will end up with an autobiography masquerading as a resume. Try doing a career self-assessment to help you identify your critical talents, career interests, goals, and needs.

A self-assessment will help you gather valuable content for your new resume and is an excellent prepping tool for interviews. The process will help you uncover expertise and work patterns that illustrate your capabilities.

It will enable you to gauge your employability at this time relative to what is available. Self-assessments highlight and lay bare gaps in your expertise and suggest repair resolutions. It will also prepare you to run an effective job search campaign. How do you go about conducting a career self-assessment?

1.      Review your skills
Do the fun stuff first. What aspects of your current job do you do well, which ones do you like doing, which fall into the “not so much ” category, and which ones do you do poorly. Think about the skills required to do your job effectively. Now think of two or three examples where you excelled in each skill. You may also identify several related skills you utilized to enhance the skills you already accepted are your strengths.

2.      Are you an expert? What do you know?
If you have worked at a company for an extended period, you may underestimate your product knowledge, technical know-how, service sector, or customer type. Did you come up with a deficit during this exercise? Then make this an immediate correction item.

3. Did you add real value?
Did you help your organization generate quantifiable income, reduce costs, solve unique customer problems or improve the quality of its service? Your contribution may have been as an individual or as part of a team. Include it all.   

4.      What do you truly want?
Your wants may include an improved salary, but what else is important to you? How do you want your next job to differ from your current role? Are there things you would like to keep the same? These items will be your decision criteria for future opportunities.

Finally, benchmark your skills and value by reviewing job postings that interest you to see what employers define as needed skills and attributes.

#jobs #franklinpatersoncompany #  #resume #forbeswomen #jobsearch #resumewriting #DWEN #job #career

Why You May Not Be Invited To Interviews

Look, there are many possible reasons why you are not getting interviews. And, you are beginning to sense that your career search journey, while not entirely derailed, is turning out to be very bumpy and indeterminate. Plus, you are not enjoying the ride, one bit!

As you try for a correction, it turns out there is one area you may have overlooked – your social media footprint. Question – do you know what your social footprint looks like to an employer who looked you up on social media or googled your name? Was your response to the search results: Yikes?

What you publish about yourself or the personal info you allow unfettered access to by everyone on social media; has the power to enhance, neuter, or severely hinder your chances of obtaining the job interviews. Consequently, you must plan out and curate your existing social media collateral to improve your chances of success in your career improvement project.

So, beyond publishing your skills and experience to the public domain and networking online with professionals from various employment sectors, here are some things you should do immediately.

1. Resolve to keep your personal intrigues, fallouts and updates, and professional updates on separate social media accounts.

2. Ensure that your LinkedIn URL and the name you generally know in the business are in simpatico.

3. Widen your reach; build your network, and engage in professional dialogue with a broader audience across multiple social channels.

4. Interact with recruiters, former colleagues, and prospective employer representatives by liking and commenting on their posts across all channels in real-time.

5. Resist the urge to be disagreeable and pedantic in your comments and responses to the posts of others. Alternative views are encouraged, but razing someone on a social media post, does nothing to further your career improvement project.

Are you ready to take the lead in your job search? Then it is time for a social redo or upgrade of your social footprint?

Interviewing Tips for the Mature Jobseeker

As a career strategy coach, I can offer that mature job seekers often get themselves into trouble at interviews by over-communicating and overselling their value and experience.

The mature job seeker needs to accept that they are at the interview because the hiring managers believe they have the skills and the experience to perform well in the new position based on their resume. Nobody interviews an unqualified candidate.

These interviews are often more about the fit, and the jobseekers’ ability to understand why the company is seeking to hire someone in the role they are interviewing for and what needs to be accomplished in the new position.

This interview is a different type of interview. It requires being a good listener and asking thoughtful exploratory questions so you can identify the problem to be solved and speak to that solution.

Success at this type of interview requires a practiced approach, a bit of restraint, and some retraining. As a mature professional and career strategy coach, I know how easy it is to oversell.

As Janis Ransom at Franklin Paterson Company Inc., shared on LinkedIn: I was asked the age question recently at a meeting to discuss a potential project. Can I ask, the hapless manager said, how old you are?
Her reply: “Will there be mountain climbing or other vigorous sport involved in the project? Because I generally do not accept projects that require extreme athletic skills.”

The response was absolute silence. A long silence. Followed by profuse apologies. Sometimes you get the opportunity to teach AND have a bit of fun.

Problems with 1st Interview Feedback?

So, no one called you back after your first interview. You were told they would get back to you in two days, and it has been two weeks! Plus, you’ve called three times for a status. Imagine getting no credit for your restraint!

By the end of week two, it is slowly beginning to dawn on you that you have crossed into the high-maintenance job seeker category. So even if you performed well at the interview, you might have blown it with your overanxious, aggressive interview follow-up.

Are you a high-maintenance jobseeker? The high maintenance jobseeker views interviewing and job search as a proactive, highly competitive exercise. The HMJ candidate believes that they should take control of the interview and the interview feedback process and may make some mistakes to get an edge over other jobseekers.

Have you committed one or many of these mistakes while job searching? Here are the most often abused missteps.

1)     Once contacted for an interview, the HMJ candidate bombards the recruiter or manager with a series of “before I set up the interview, I would like to share” emails.

2)     When asked for additional or supporting documents, the candidate sends each item in a separate email. As a result, the recruiters or managers are so overwhelmed that they never open any documents.

3)     During the interview, HMJ struggles to allow the manager to ask complete questions or constantly interrupts to present supporting documents, forgetting that there is no prize given for being a “quick-draw” with the responses. It is important to remember that some people ramble before coming to the point, so answering the question too soon can hurt you.

4)     Post-interviewed HMJ often calls to find out the state of their candidacy or will email show-and-tell items to highlight their projects, reference letters, reviews, etc.

5)     HMJ forgets to write down the Key Manager’s name and addresses their Thank You note “To whom it may concern” – the answer to which is “Nobody.”

Many job seekers inadvertently commit one or more of these interview mistakes to stand out from other candidates.

If you were not invited to a second interview or did not hear back after your first interview, check the items above. Did you commit any of these blunders – are you an HMJ- a high maintenance jobseeker?

Job Search Rejection Emails


What to do about those rejection emails? You know the emails I am referring to. The thank you for applying, now go away and bother someone else, interview rejection email.

One of my clients received one of those three-line rejection emails after the first interview he attended last Thursday. The candidate was not surprised as he knew he had made a big technical qualification mistake in the interview.

We discussed whether pursuing the job was worth the fight, concluded that the job was worth fighting for, and proceeded to investigate a remedy and execute a recovery game plan.

Our decision, send an email to the hiring manager acknowledging the mistake. Let the manager know that you have done some reading on the topic, and there is a class from the vendor that could have you up to speed on the current version of the product within weeks.

The good news is that the candidate got an email back from the manager yesterday, suggesting that they meet this Thursday afternoon to discuss the position further. The manager liked the candidate’s proactive problem-solving approach appreciated his willingness to outline a recovery plan and do the work to achieve a goal.

Look, I am not suggesting that you respond to every rejection email with a recovery plan and a promise to do extra work.

But there are times when just before the bell sounds at the interview that is going well, you walk into the unexpected straight right-hand of interviewing incompetence, leaving you surprised, wobbly, and nearly kissing the canvas.

Success favors the brave, especially the courageous who are supported by an experienced team in their corner. The plan, retreat to your corner and huddle with your interview coach, career strategy consultant, or supportive teammates to plan your next move.

A stinging blow to the chin does not necessarily mean all is lost. Well, unless you find yourself flat out cold on the canvas, looking up at the ring lights!

Close your interview with a process question.

Closing your interview with a process question instead of a project related question, is a winning interview strategy. Asking an organizational or process question at the end of an interview can help you gauge whether the position is a good career fit for you at this point in your life and career.

These questions should replace the project, technical or industry related questions as you may have already discussed those topics with the interviewer. A good sample question: “What are the challenges someone hired into this role can expect to face?”

The Manager’s response to the question will show:

1.   Whether there are departmental or interdepartmental politics that you will have to battle against? And, are there technical issues that may make it initially challenging to perform your role effectively?

2.   The Manager’s answer may provide clues as to whether the Manager is aware and in-tune with what it takes to be a success in this role?

3.   Does the manager offer suggestions on how they will work with you to ensure your success? Does the manager speak about the good technical or process culture among the team?

4.   Does the manager’s response discuss how they generally mitigate friction among their talented team members? Because, while friction can generate new ideas, it can massacre the implementation of the new or unique ideas.

5.   Are there actions in place to correct some of these deficiencies, and how someone like you can add value in that effort?

This and other similar open-ended questions, is the manager’s opportunity to sell the role, their organization, and their management style. It is also an opportunity to tell you a bit about what kind of training the company provides its employees.

The manager’s failure to grasp the importance of this question and the opportunity to sell their management style, will also help you gauge the Manager’s interest in your candidacy for the position, and the potential for career growth that the position will provide.

Asking thoughtful process questions shows that you are interested and committed to success in the role could set you apart from the other candidate.

As Summer Heats Up, Your Job Search Should, Too

People are questioning more than their salaries; they’re questioning their purpose. They are questioning the amount of emotional labor their career demands, and They’re fed up with workplace toxicity and hierarchies. They are fed up with workplace toxicity and hierarchies.

They want to do something utterly cool that makes them feel like they are making a material difference in the world. If that’s you, now is a good time for a rethink. Tens of thousands of professionals have been unceremoniously laid off this year. And yes, there’s self-righteous anger in the air in that sector, and not for no reason! These people know their worth in the marketplace (even if their C-levels don’t). Many of them are sick of being treated like a devalued commodity.

They are aggressively looking at other areas where they can apply their insane talents in programming, data science, marketing, and engineering. If that’s you, now is a good time for a rethink. And if you’ve been sitting back since the pandemic because “sitting back” is now what you’re used to? Get up. Your competition is lounging poolside with a mai tai pitcher. Hit the pavement, and hit it hard.

There are great jobs out there for you, and you can take advantage of your colleagues’ case of Summer Syndrome. As Summer Heats Up, Your Job Search Should, Too. Read the entire article via @forbes https://www.forbes.com/sites/forbescoachescouncil/2023/08/02/as-summer-heats-up-your-job-search-should-too/ written by Cara Heilmann President of the International Association of Career Coaches (IACC)® and CEO of Ready Reset Go®. Article Photo from Forbes article.

Just Catch Up, have Regular Conversations, and Check in with others.

Being a small business owner can be a lonely, isolating business. There are lots of recommendations to mitigate this unavoidable problem. But here is one that resonates. Just call to check in and catch up with others, revitalize your support system by having regular conversations.

People often think of great relationships as being built on deep trust, meaningful interactions, and soul-searching discussions. While these count, research has found that even quick, superficial contact was positive. The new study shows an amazingly simple way to boost your wellness and happiness: Have a face-to-face conversation with a friend or colleague once daily.

When you catch up quickly, you stay in touch with what’s going on with people, and you have a basis to check in the next time. You learn your teammate has just made an offer on a house, and you ask about it the next time you see them. Or you find out their child was just accepted to college, and you can check in on the transition process when you run into them again. Or they share that they’ve put in for a new job, and you can offer your support.

Relationships are built on continuity and familiarity—so the more you know, the more you can build. And every tidbit you learn about them, or they learn about you, is a deposit in a bank to help you understand each other. So, catch up quickly on the elevator or send a brief email to check-in. Or call a friend during your commute time to let someone know you’re thinking of them.  

Focus on Others

Happiness is correlated with focusing on others more than yourself. Ask questions about how someone is doing, be present and focused, and demonstrate that you respect and support them. Complimenting others was also a contributor—so focus on what you sincerely appreciate about someone and express it.  

Joke Around

When you joke with someone about a situation, you reinforce common ground—something you can laugh at or roll your eyes about. And if you tease in a constructive way, you’re demonstrating that you know and understand a person. Of course, teasing must never be negative or disrespectful, but laughing together can help you bond and contribute to your well-being.  

Make It Easy

And it may be easier than you think, with quick contact, regular conversations, and checking in with even one close friend each day. Feeling connected and having a sense of belonging are significant determinants of all kinds of health, so it’s worth the effort.

Read the entire article: For Wellness and Happiness, Study Shows That Conversation Is Key:  by Tracy Brower, PhD, Senior Contributor, Forbes – For Wellness And Happiness, https://franpatresumes.com/conversationandhappiness