Tag Archives: Networking (not IT)

Breaking Out Of Long-Term Unemployment | Glassdoor.com

It’s especially difficult when one encounters HR staff and recruiters that are clueless to what happened in 2009.

Breaking Out Of Long-Term Unemployment

Posted by Yahoo! Hot Jobs • April 22nd, 2010

Long-term unemployment can wreak havoc on a person’s sense of self-worth and well-being. Worse, big resume gaps, or current unemployment, may also mark a job seeker as “damaged goods” and make a long job search even longer.

“I wouldn’t say the bias [against hiring the unemployed] is pervasive, but too many hiring managers don’t realize that the world has changed and that people have had a hard time finding jobs through no fault of their own,” says Cheryl Ferguson, president of Recruiter’s Studio and recruiter for Decision Toolbox.

Throw in the towel? Don’t even think about it, career experts say. They suggest these practical steps to help even the most discouraged unemployed job seeker get motivated and beat the odds.

1. Check your mental attitudes.
It’s a vicious circle: the longer you’re out of work, the more anxious, insecure, or depressed you may be–and this can hurt your chances of landing a job. “Attitude is a crucial part of the job search, and unfortunately it’s easy to be caught up in negative mental self-talk, especially with the media telling us how terrible everything is,” says Helaine Z. Harris, a Los Angeles-based psychotherapist.

If anxiety or depression is significant, don’t be afraid to seek counseling. If that’s not an option, simple calming breaths and even meditation can be effective, Harris says. “It’s essential to relax and clear the mind, so you’ll know the right actions to take and be able to magnetize the opportunities you want.” Connecting with nurturing friends and sharing your feelings about being unemployed can also help if you’re feeling isolated.

2. Move your body.
There’s documented evidence that physical exercise improves mental health and reduces anxiety. And a gym regimen or even daily walks around the neighborhood can help your job-search efforts by adding structure to your day. “Regular exercise creates more self-discipline and shows that you can do hard things, which makes it easier to handle tasks like making difficult phone calls,” says Penelope Trunk, creator of the social network site Brazen Careerist.

3. Step away from the computer.
Job boards and social networking sites such as Twitter can be helpful, but they are not the only ways to connect. And relying on them can perpetuate the unemployment “hermit” trap. “If you’ve been out of circulation for a while, you have to remind people you’re still around,” Ferguson says. “You’re also likely to be a little rusty in networking, so it’s important to get out once or twice a week, at least, for a face-to-face meeting, lunch, or networking event.”

4. Re-examine employment strategies and tactics.
With a clearer mind, an energized body, and a fuller social calendar, you can better gauge the effectiveness of your search. Career coach and author Dr. Marty Nemko urges unemployed job hunters to not assume they’ve been doing everything right:

“Are you really spending 30 hours a week job searching? Do you have a job-search buddy, so you can be accountable to each other? Are you active in your professional association, in-person and online? After an interview, have you sent a proposal that explains what you’d do for the employer? Have you followed up relentlessly with warm leads? If you’ve done all of those things and still aren’t getting a job, you probably need to change your job target to a more in-demand job title or a lower-level job,” says Nemko.

5. Fill the resume gap.
A resume should be a history of things you’ve accomplished, not necessarily a chronology of things you’ve been paid for, according to Trunk. With that philosophy, there’s no reason to have a gap in your resume. “There are very few professions where you have to be on the payroll in order to do the work,” Trunk says. “If you’re a programmer, write a patch on your own time. If you’re a shoe designer, design your own shoes. Just do it. You’ll have something to show on the resume, and you’ll be taking back your power.” (See all HotJobs articles about resumes.)

6. Don’t be defensive about unemployment.
You’ve been out of work for a while. So what? So have many of the other candidates. “Don’t hide the fact you’ve been unemployed,” says John M. McKee, job coach and founder of BussinessSuccessCoach.net. “People won’t hire others who are prickly.”

McKee adds that you might need to stop saying the word “unemployed” if the word is getting in your way. Trunk agrees: “When someone asks what you’re doing now, don’t say you’re out of work, because you’re not. You’re just not getting paid. Talk about the projects you’ve done and what you’re learning, and then mention, ‘I’m looking for a paid position like this.’”–Larry Buhl, for Yahoo! HotJobs

via Breaking Out Of Long-Term Unemployment | Glassdoor.com Blog.

13 Reasons You will Never Get a Job | via “The Job Genius”

Its so easy to ascribe blame to external forces but sometimes it is actually you (me). The author presents 13 points that make for a good self assessment.  Maybe its time to look in the mirror…

13 Reasons You will Never Get a Job

Filed under: Change is Good, Changing Careers, General, Motivation, Networking — Tags: Lack of education, Motivation, Personal Branding, Personal development — admin @ 2:28 pm

Yes I know that 13 is an unlucky number and even that may deter some of you from reading this. Just this once how about being a contrarian? That’s right, go against the grain. Make a difference in your life. Okay let me be perfectly honest with you. Nobody owes you a job. And to make it worse most job seekers are faced with a perfect storm of barriers that never existed in the past. Those barriers include huge competition for a single position, social media, applicant tracking systems, the complete elimination of entire job descriptions and industries, not to mention a totally overwhelmed HR and recruiting department. You have to be prepared to put your best foot forward. Your most prepared foot. And the one that completely differentiates you from the flock.

Although “experts” are skirting the issue and giving you false hope, I don’t have any problem telling you that you are likely going to stay unemployed, unhappy and a complete burden on society if you continue to do the things I’ve outlined below. Consider it a wake up call; consider it an opportunity. Because statistics show that only a very small percentage of you will take any action. Interesting, that’s about the same percentage of people in the world who are independently successful.

Your choice, it’s a new world with new rules so you have to be ready to do new things.

These 13 reasons outline opportunities that most people will never take advantage of. That’s good news for some of you because the difference between successful people and unsuccessful people is that successful people will do what unsuccessful people will not. Here you go (don’t kill the messenger).

1) You spew facts vs. stories. There’s an old adage in sales and marketing that stories sell and facts tell. People can relate personally to stories and the more you know about the company and person that you are interviewing with the better you can get that person to relate to what you are talking about. Stories evoke emotions and get people connected. And being personally connected is the differentiator you need. Think about the book series, “Chicken Soup for the Soul”. It is just a compilation of short stories about real life. It’s also the best selling book series of all time. But what if instead of telling a heart wrenching story about a paraplegic who learns to walk again and fights all odds to win a dog sled race in the Antarctic all alone, it was just a series of facts like, “Man rides sled across the snow”? One of the most powerful things you can do is call up former employees and employers and just shoot the breeze with them. Write down all the wonderful, “remember when” stories as well as the stories of success and challenge that make you unique. You need other people to jog your memory. If you can give your story personality and feelings, then you will gain instant rapport with anyone you talk to. Instant differentiator, you win.

2) You don’t present solutions. Let’s be real, an employer wants to hire someone to solve a particular problem. Either they don’t have enough of something or they want to fix/change something. And if they had all the solutions then they wouldn’t need you. So after you have thoroughly researched and analyzed the company, its culture, the competition, the industry and the people you are interviewing with then you better know what solutions they need and be able to communicate it. If you don’t, it’s okay because somebody else will. One great tool is to actually perform a S.W.O.T. analysis on the department, industry or company you are interested in. S.W.O.T. stands for Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats. Just Google it if you need a template to help guide you. And believe me, any employer worth working for will be completely impressed not only by your research but by your diligence.

3) You’re lazy. Anything worth doing is worth doing well. Abe Lincoln said that if he had 8 hours to chop down a tree then he would spend the first 6 sharpening his axe. Unfortunately most people don’t want to put forth the time and effort to do what they need to do to secure an interview and a job. The facts are clear that the vast majority of jobs are attained by some sort of active networking practice. And not by posting your resume on-line or applying for job after job. Yet most people are not willing to do what it takes to establish and nurture (you don’t just make a connection and then magic happens) the right networks. When I suggest that people actually call companies and build a rapport with associates in order to seek referrals, they look at me like I’m crazy. But that one additional step can mean the difference between having or not having network contacts, job referrals, insight, interview process feedback and much more.

4) You’re boring. Surveys of recruiters and Human Resource managers show that the number one trait that job seekers lack is high energy. The bottom line is that people want to be around other people who are upbeat, exciting and at the very least, energetic. The perception is that high energy people are on the ball and exude confidence; low energy people are lazy, unmotivated and no fun. Regardless of whether that is true or not, you had better have a gut check about your output. And I’m not just talking about the live interview where your handshake needs to be strong and secure (ladies included) and your voice confident and strong. During your phone interview, your energy is even more important because no one can see the bright expression of excitement that is hidden by technology. The only way to portray confidence and high energy on the phone is to have the proper inflection, tonality and great volume. With blue tooth and other type headsets, it’s more and more important to speak up. And after all, if you’re not excited about what you have to offer, why should anyone else be? And please get some honest feedback from someone about how you sound. True story; I was actually offered a job because of a message I left on an answering machine. It wasn’t the message itself; it was the energy, passion and drive that delivered it.

5) You don’t add up. Have you ever talked to someone and they just make you turn your head and say, “hmm”? Well how do you know if someone isn’t saying that about you? Here’s the best way to tell. If you have anything to hide, have covered something up, or speak in half truths or your resume doesn’t match what you say or what you wrote on your application. If any of those things are true, people will say, “Hmm”
about you. The biggest lies we tell are the one’s we tell ourselves (think of your kids who will honestly say they didn’t get into the cake, all the while covered in chocolate icing). No job, guaranteed. Be honest and be consistent. There are no perfect people in the world. In fact the only people with no problems are well, dead people. What differentiates people is how they handle those problems. So turn your past issues into opportunities. Employers are looking for solution providers so be one.

6) You only speak one language. I’m not talking French or Spanish. I’m talking about the three ways that people communicate and learn. People
learn and disseminate information in one of three ways; auditory,
visual and kinesthetic. Without a full dissertation, this is what I’m talking bout. Auditory learners can grasp information just by you talking to them. Visual learners need some form of pictures or stories to create the picture before they “get it”. Kinesthetic learners need to be an active participant before the information gets through their thick skulls (that’s me). These interviewers would most benefit from a Socratic type interview where they were guided to come up with their own conclusions about why you are the “man” for the job.

Oh and by the way most people are visual. I just happen to be kinesthetic. Which means that I am so dense that you can talk ‘till you
are blue in the face and I won’t get it. I know what you are saying, “So what”? Well let’s say that that there is an even distribution of the population (33.33% each) that prefers to communicate in one of the three styles. And you prefer to communicate in one of the other. So you are visual and the interviewer is auditory. You show graphs and pictures but don’t really “explain” why you are the best candidate (stories are also like pictures). Have you ever wondered why you have a passionate message that just doesn’t produce the results that you are looking for? Well this is the number one reason. Why do you think that Google paid like a gazillion (I’m sure that’s the official term) dollars for YouTube? Because video appealed to the masses in a way that written text never could. So the solution is always to appeal to the interviewers preferred style. How do you do that? We’ll it would be great if you could give them a test to determine their preferred style but the fact is that you just don’t know. So the only solution is to ALWAYS communicate in all three styles. And if you do…..wow you will do what 99% of job seekers not only don’t know how to do but they are also not willing (see lazy above) to do. Hey what’s the big deal anyway…being unemployed is not that bad. I’m sure that Obama will extend your jobless benefits and eating out is so over rated.

7) You’re a quitter. If I hadn’t just had two glasses of wine complements of Delta on my first class upgrade I would have said that you need to have more perseverance. (Disclaimer: I am not condoning the use of alcohol to enhance your creative abilities) But let’s be
real here. Most people quit too soon. Studies show that 81% of professional sales people take 5 calls to close a sale. But a full 90% give up prior to making that critical 5th call (48% quit after the first call and another 24% quit after the 2nd call). I can think of a significant number of hires who scored the position just because they were the one who stayed front and center with me. And not just when I had a position open, no these candidates made regular contact regardless of whether anything was available. And you know the best part is that I really appreciated those candidates staying top of mind with me. Why? Because it kept me from having to weed through hundreds of unqualified candidates.

8) You don’t take advantage of opportunities right in front of your face. Right now I am sitting on a two hour plane ride from Kansas City back to my home in Atlanta. I had an idea pop into my head to write this article after talking to a couple of job seekers who are close to 100% guaranteed not to get employment anytime soon (see reasons 1-13). Oops the battery on my laptop is completely dead and Delta just doesn’t have the foresight like the Virgin Atlantic visionaries to add AC; even in first class (yeah I’m spoiled, so). I am actually writing this entire article on my iPhone because my laptop battery died (I thought about writing a book about writing a book on my phone). I have never understood how someone can spend hours on a plane and not at least have something to read, let alone work on. But in all seriousness, opportunities are all around us every day. Most of the time we are just not prepared to take advantage of them. They say that luck is when preparation and opportunity cross paths and that is so true. Here’s a great example. And this story came from an article in the Atlanta Journal almost a year ago. Yes I was prepared for the opportunity and cut the article out and filed it under, “opportunities”. Anyway the article is about a marketing executive who was a little down on his luck (not enough business) so he decided to create some by actually scheduling flights (mostly first class) to no-where in particular. Why? Because most decision makers were on flights and in first class. The result was that David Topus, marketing and business consultant, landed a 3 year business relationship with former Delta CEO, Leo Mullin, countless contacts and even a 100k deal because of a seat assignment mix up. Now I understand that most people don’t have the means to spend a couple of grand on a first class ticket just on the chance that they will meet someone, but you are missing the point. David just created networking opportunities that exist for all of us, every day. Instead of a first class flight, the opportunity you create could come from a Chamber Networking function or a MeetUp group that you start, or god forbid strike up a conversation with someone in line at the grocery store. The differentiator is that David took an active role in his networking whereas most people think that “showing up” is good enough. Seriously, the whole “90% of life is just showing up” has really screwed up a lot of folks. In the very best of markets maybe that has a hint of truth; with the results only lasting short term. In this market it has no relevance what so ever.

9) Your resume sucks. Alright I’ve reviewed more resumes than I can count. Do you want to know the bottom line? Okay here you go. You know that resume writer that you paid big bucks for? Fire them and hire an editor instead (at a fraction of the price). Your resume won’t get you the job or interview but it can certainly lose it for you. So use this as a rule of thumb. Don’t make it too long, too complicate (go for it if you are a PhD in Neuroscience and are applying for the same but still be careful because a recruiter is likely screening your resume) or too messy. It doesn’t matter how good a candidate you are if your resume shows how poorly you can hire a proof reader or do it yourself. And here’s some very valuable information (you can send me a check if you want) that will completely differentiate you from the rest of the world. Go back and read number 6 above. Take out some words (no fluff in the resume please) and add a few graphs or charts that are easy to read. It will immediately catch someone’s eye and it will resonate with another 33 1/3% of the population who are visual learners (come on, we all like to look at the pictures).

10) You need immediate gratification. An article in The New Yorker highlighted a 1960’s study that showed there is a direct correlation between a child’s ability to delay immediate gratification and success. In fact the 30% of kids who could delay getting a marshmallow for just 15 minutes scored on average 210 points higher on SAT scores. The 70% who could not delay immediate gratification struggled making friends and handling stressful situations. To put this in perspective, the job seeker that needs immediate gratification is the one who posts their resume every day, they do mass mailings of cover letters, and they mindlessly apply for job after job. The job seeker who can delay immediate gratification will do their due diligence by researching companies, individuals, industries and competitors. They will put together a package of solutions and take the time to build relationships as well as practice until their message is clear and value oriented.  So what’s it going to be? One marshmallow now or two in 15 minutes?

11) You’re a taker, not a giver. If you are always looking for what a company is going to do for you and what your benefits will be then you are thinking backwards and you are doomed to fail. Everyone’s favorite radio station is WIIFM (what’s in it for me) so it’s only natural to be a little selfish. The only problem is that your potential employer listens to the same station and they have the upper hand. So if your mission is not to add value to individuals and organizations then you’ve added one more reason why you may never get a job in this economy. The best way to learn how to add value is to make a list of the common concerns an employer might have about hiring someone and answer them. Employers are really only concerned about 3 things. If you can do the job. If you will do the job. If they like you. Answer the objections before the interviewer has had a chance to ask you about them and you are in baby. Other great ways to add value is by doing a S.W.O.T. Analysis or actually preparing a summary of how you will attack the position in your first 90 days (please include items related to soliciting the help of other people in the company).

12) You’re going it alone. Here’s the bottom line. Two heads are better than one and you only have one (if you do in fact have two, skip this section). Napoleon Hill in his masterpiece, Think and Grow Rich, described it a little more elegantly. He said that a mastermind is “The coordination of knowledge and effort of two or more people, who work toward a definite purpose, in the spirit of harmony.” And also, “No two minds ever come together without thereby creating a third, invisible intangible force, which may be likened to a third mind.” In fact he also stated that nothing of greatness was ever achieved by a single man. Yet so often, especially when we are down and out, we tend to play turtle and hide in our shell. You should be doing just the opposite by joining forces with accountability partners who will challenge you to do things that you would never do on your own. And of course, you should return the favor. If you want to know where to find an accountability partner, don’t worry, they are everywhere and likely looking for you as well. See number 8 above.

13) You aren’t prepared. I had to add this in just to make it an even 13 reasons that you will never get a job (only if you are actually a participant in one or more of them). Brian Tracy, the world famous sales trainer said that for every minute you spend planning, you save 10 minutes in execution. That’s a 1000% return on your energy. To put that in perspective, if you do the proper planning and preparation then you can have one interview and get the job or you can be poorly prepared and continue to interview over and over and over again. Get it? So what should you be preparing? In a word, everything. Interview questions (with your accountability partner), reviewing your resume (with your accountability partner), interviewing other people (because you learn when you teach), researching companies, individuals, industries, trends etc and practice relating the information over and over until you are good at it and you exude confidence (because you will when you know your stuff). I could go on and on but I think you get the point. Everything you do, you should plan and prepare for.

There you have it. 13 reasons why you may not ever get a job in this economy. I hope that is not the case. I hope this has been a wake up call for you because these are also 13 ways that you can differentiate yourself from most every other job seeker. It’s a buyers market and you better have the right product for anyone to be interested. Dents, dings and scratches need not apply.

via The Job Genius.

11 Twitter Tips – Job Search in 140 Characters | ZDNet.com

11 Twitter Tips – Job Search in 140 Characters
December 31st, 2009
Posted by Jennifer Leggio @ 12:55 pm

Guest editorial by Phil Rosenberg, ReCareered

Twitter is a fast growing tool, now being used for more serious purposes than advertise what you had for lunch.  However, Twitter is a firehose of information, making it overwhelming for both the noobie and experienced user to find relevant information, or encourage relevant people to find your own information.

So how can job seekers make Twitter a part of their search strategy?

Getting found on Twitter: Recruiters and HR reps are now on Twitter looking for talent.  In addition, Tweets are now indexed by Google, giving savvy candidates more visibility with recruiters and HR reps who search Google for candidates.  Here are some ways you can encourage others to find you Twitter:

1.       Tweet your resume: Store your resume online (suggestions: your ResuBlog or Online Portfolio, box.net, Google docs).  Then tweet links along with industry information if you are a stealth candidate, or a statement that you are looking and some key words (ex: Java programmer) if you are active.  Even stealth candidates can use this, since Twitter uses link shorteners, so the link you broadcast won’t contain the word resume or your name.

2.       reTweet industry articles: This is Twitter’s way to “pass it on”.  reTweeting industry articles is especially effective for passive job seekers who want to be found, but not be seen as an active job hunters by a current employer.  As Tweets are now indexed by Google and can’t be erased once Tweeted, a direct statement that you’re “looking for a job” may be risky for stealth candidates.

3.       Tweet your own articles or comments: Even if you don’t blog, if you comment, sending a Twitter link to your blog posts or comments shares the discussion with others, including industry recruiters.

4.       Build a list: Build an industry list (see http://recareered.blogspot.com/2009/11/how-can-twitter-lists-help-job-seekers.html).  If you are a Customer Service Manager, build a list of other customer service people, companies and recruiters.  Tweet that you’ve built an industry list, and offer to share with others.

5.       Use Hashtags: Hashtags allow others to easily find your Tweets.  Use hashtags with industry terms if you are stealth or job search terms (see below) if an active candidate.  Hashtags can also serve as keywords for Google searches.

6.       Engage in discussions: Follow Tweets that spark discussion about your industry and comment.

7.       Twitter Profile: Use key words in your profile (and your Tweets) that allow you to be found by recruiters & hiring managers.  Include a link to your resume and your email address in your profile.

Finding the right information and jobs:

8.       Search – Use Twitter’s search function (I find TweetDeck’s search much easier).  Search for “job finance” and you’ll get a steam of job postings for finance professionals.

9.       Hashtags – Hashtags are a way to search for Twitter topics.  I publish job tips on Twitter under the hashtags #career #job #jobsearch #layoff.  Also try #jobs #jobhunt #employment #hiring #laidoff #careers #hireme.

10.   Lists – Twitter Lists are features that allow you to follow a group of posts.  I’ve assembled Twitter’s largest list of JobTweets at http://twitter.com/philreCareered/JobTweets .  If you follow this list, you’ll see a stream of job postings on twitter, and you can search this stream for job postings in your town, industry or function.  Find other Twitter lists on Listorious (http://listorious.com/tags/jobs) .

11.   Following people on Twitter lists – In addition to following lists, follow individual users on the lists that interest you.

For additional help in using Twitter to find jobs…and have employers find you check out additional resources at http://reCareered.blogspot.com Click on the topic tag Twitter to gain additional ideas.

Phil Rosenberg is President of reCareered, an executive career coaching service, helping great people discover new career paths and beat the challenges of modern job searches.  Phil runs the Career Change Central group, recently named one of Linkedin’s top groups that job seekers must join.  An active blogger about career change, Phil’s articles are republished by Business Week, The Wall Street Journal, CIO, FastCompany and dozens of job and recruiting sites.  Phil can be contacted at phil.reCareered@gmail.com. You can follow Phil on Twitter @philreCareered.

via 11 Twitter Tips – Job Search in 140 Characters | Social Business | ZDNet.com.

LinkedIn Wants Users to Connect More – WSJ.com

Will the new leadership take Linkedin to the next Level?  The old regime really missed the boat by curtailing LIONS and power users.  They really didn’t get the premise of social networking.  Hope that the new skipper “gets it”.

LinkedIn Wants Users to Connect More

Amid Threat From Rivals, Business-Networking Web Site Takes a Page from Facebook’s Playbook

If LinkedIn Corp. wants to avoid being swamped by social-networking giant Facebook Inc., it will have to convince users like Jackie Nejaime to log in more often they do now.

Ms. Nejaime, a San Francisco real-estate agent, uses LinkedIn to stay in touch with her 183-person network, check out job prospects and see if someone might be interested in one of the homes she’s selling. But she typically logs in only a few times a month because she says the site lacks features.

“I would like to get more use out of it,” said Ms. Nejaime “I just don’t know how.” By contrast, the 47-year-old says she uses Facebook every day to touch base with friends and professional contacts.

It is up to LinkedIn’s chief executive, Jeff Weiner, to give people like Ms. Nejaime reasons to spend more time on LinkedIn, which is mostly used by professionals to post their resumes and by corporate recruiters looking for talent.

LinkedIn CEO Jeff Weiner wants to give people reasons to spend more time on LinkedIn, which is primarily used by professionals to post resumes.

Mr. Weiner, 39, a former senior executive at Yahoo Inc., took over LinkedIn a year ago with a mandate to reinvigorate the six-year-old business. While LinkedIn’s membership has continued to surge, reaching 53.6 million at the end of November from 31.5 million a year ago, it has been dwarfed by Facebook, which has surpassed 350 million members.

More importantly, the amount of time people devote to LinkedIn is a fraction of the time people spend on some other social sites. Visitors spent about 13 minutes on average at LinkedIn during October, while Facebook users logged about 213 minutes and MySpace users spent 87 minutes, according to research firm comScore, which measured the behavior of global users 15 years and older.

LinkedIn is “not really a community as much as a collection” of names, said Brigantine Advisors analyst Colin Gillis. “They are definitely in danger of losing the business-networking market.”

While Facebook doesn’t specifically target the professional market, hundreds of companies, such as Ernst & Young and EMC Corp., use the site to highlight their firms and recruit new candidates, said a Facebook spokeswoman. Special groups for lawyers, accountants, engineers, sales people and other professionals have cropped up all over Facebook as well.

One of Mr. Weiner’s solutions is to take a page from Facebook’s playbook. He recently opened LinkedIn’s site to third-party developers so they can create applications that will draw professional users to the site when they aren’t looking for work.

For example, software maker SAP AG has written an app that allows certified SAP developers to highlight their credentials by adding a “badge” to their LinkedIn profiles. A recently announced partnership with micro-blogging service Twitter Inc. enables LinkedIn members to link their Twitter accounts to their LinkedIn profiles.

LinkedIn expects other developers will target specific interest groups. For example, a developer might build an app that enables lawyers to highlight their case histories on their profiles. Unlike Facebook, which includes games, LinkedIn said all apps for its network must be professionally oriented. Submissions will be approved on a case by case basis.

“The more relevant those experiences the more likely our membership will be to engage in those experiences,” said Mr. Weiner, adding that LinkedIn has already received requests from 1,500 developers for access to the site’s programming interfaces.

Some analysts downplay the risk LinkedIn faces from sites like Facebook and highlight the recent growth the company has seen outside the U.S. market. Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster said the “clear delineation” between social and professional networking affords LinkedIn a fair degree of breathing room.

The privately-held company says it turns a profit from ads and recruitment services, though it won’t disclose its profit or revenue. And while LinkedIn says it made “significant” infrastructure investments over the past year, it still has most of the $100 million it has so far raised from venture capital investors.

LinkedIn is also poised to announce a series of subscription “packages,” specially priced memberships that provide not-yet-disclosed products and services designed for job hunters, small-business owners or other groups. The company didn’t provide details, but suggested that some new third-party apps might only be available to premium subscribers.

Other partnerships are aimed at making LinkedIn more useful when members are working outside the network. For example, Microsoft Corp.’s upcoming version of Outlook will allow users to see people’s LinkedIn profiles when they are sending or receiving. Overlapping users will be able to sync their Outlook and LinkedIn contact lists, as well as use Outlook to expand their LinkedIn networks.

Mr. Weiner acknowledges that driving membership growth, while at the same time increasing the number of apps they can use to communicate with each other, poses significant challenges. Key among them is to develop the right privacy tools so users can control who they share information with. Another challenge is to ensure that users aren’t overwhelmed by a blizzard of irrelevant content.

Write to Scott Morrison at scott.morrison@dowjones.com

via LinkedIn Wants Users to Connect More – WSJ.com.

Why Talented People Don’t Get Hired | Liz Ryan

Liz is one of my favorite authors; perhaps because she’s an iconoclast…like me.

My favorite is when an online application requires three references and their contact information.  My references are all very busy, high level executives in multibillion dollar public companies.  Do you really think that I’m putting their names and contact information into the “black hole”?  What are these people thinking?  You haven’t evened phone screened me but you expect me to jeopardize my greatest asset: 3 rock solid executives that will vouch for what I bring to the table…please…get a clue.

Why Talented People Don’t Get Hired

Posted by Liz Ryan • October 21st, 2009

“Employers call me and wail, “So many job candidates, and no one to fill my job.” They say that the recent economic woes haven’t made it much easier for them to hire talent. “We get flooded with applications,” they tell me, “and most of them are dreck.”

Your applications are dreck? That’s a shock. Gee, all you’re doing is asking every single person who would throw his hat in the ring for a job in your company to:

1. Waste 45 minutes filling out a cumbersome, 1999-vintage online application form;

2. Recall and convey every hiring date (year AND month) and departure date (ditto) for every job a job-seeker has ever held; AND remember every salary and every supervisor’s name;

3. Agree to an upfront background check, credit check, and reference check before the applicant has received so much as the courtesy of a return email message; and

4. Send all this personal information into the void, on the off chance that the employer might stoop to respond with a phone call, an email message or an off-handed auto-responder that says “Don’t call us; we’ll call you – or else we won’t.”

Job application processes are insulting. And employers wonder why they can’t fill jobs?

What self-respecting person is willing to put up with this demeaning routine? If employers can’t show more respect to the talented people applying for work in their companies, why would any job seeker with other options sign up for this galley-slave treatment?

I tell job seekers that applying for jobs online at Monster and CareerBuilder is less reliable, outcome-wise, than playing the lottery. At least the state lottery is legally bound to give someone the prize. Corporations aren’t legally required to give someone the job. They aren’t even legally required to HAVE a job opening, when they run an ad online. They could be fishing to see who’s around and what they’d need to pay to find an Online Marketing Manager, an HRIS Specialist or a Business Analyst, if they should decide to hire one in the future.

There are talented people everywhere. Lots of them are consulting. They experienced one too many ‘three-interviews-gee-this-looks-promising-we’re-about-to-check-references’ scenarios followed by radio silence, the kind where your calls don’t get returned. Have corporate recruiting managers no shame? How do you sit down with a person three or four times, talk with his or her spouse on the phone, share stories and ideas together and then – poof! The door shuts.

I have half a dozen personal friends who are entrepreneurs, doing quite well. I ask them “Would you ever go back to the corporate world?” and they say, “Sure, if the right opportunity arose, and someone called me, and I didn’t have to go through that whole HR rigmarole—- No, I wouldn’t.”

HR people don’t see the problem, although it’s staring them in the face. They’re so used to the filthy water they’re swimming in that they can’t see the candidate-fish choking and dying all around them. In what other adult conversation would we dare to ask a person “What is your greatest weakness?” That’s an insulting, juvenile question on top of being nobody’s business. Yet this and other insulting, archaic artifacts of the 1950’s recruiting process linger on. (A good answer to the question, by the way, is “Chocolate.”)

Every day I hear of new, reprehensible bricks mortared onto the already-imposing wall between most employers and the talent population. “Hey Liz,” writes one reader, “I just saw a job ad that requires candidates to submit a four-page business plan along with their resume. It’s a business plan for the employer’s new product, of course. That’d take me a weekend to complete. You think I should spend a weekend on this unpaid project?” Hell no, was my reply. Why would you waste three seconds on these people, who show so little respect for your time? You’d lob that business plan over the wall, and most likely hear nothing from them – ever. You don’t need to trifle with people like that. Your information, your instincts, and your energy are too valuable. Save ‘em for an employer who will value them.

Smart job seekers are locating and contacting those employers who are most attuned to the value of their talents – very often, they’re startup organizations rather than large employers – and avoiding the corporate Black Hole altogether. Who can blame them? The more bricks we put in the wall, the more our Employer Brand will resemble this one:

Come and work with us at Acme Corp! We hire the most docile and doormat-ish employees on the planet. Why, if you can make it through three online personality tests, weeks of no communication, five in-person interviews and an exhaustive background check without getting your most basic questions answered or your phone calls returned, you may be just the right person for us! If you’re a lucky selected candidate, we’ll run you through the interview wringer at great personal inconvenience to you, you’ll hear nothing from us, and eleven weeks later you’ll receive our offer letter (with your name spelled wrong) in the mail! You’d better accept that offer on the spot, too, because if you don’t, there are six other doormats waiting in line behind you!

It’s no secret why employers are wailing and gnashing their teeth over talent shortages. Maybe our schools are failing us, they say. The schools aren’t failing them – they’re failing themselves. If you’re a corporate recruiting manager, you might take this opportunity to ’staple yourself to a resume’ and imagine the process by which you bring newcomers onto the payroll. If your firm is typical, the waiting time, unreturned calls, increasingly onerous recruiting demands and general disdain for candidates’ time and intelligence will be an eye-opener for you. The ability to recruit talent – not just bodies – is a competitive differentiator. Will your company grab it, and start pulling bricks out of the wall?”

via Why Talented People Don’t Get Hired | Glassdoor.com Blog.

CIO > HR executives reveal best job search tools

From CIO New Zealand magazine:

HR executives reveal best job search tools

By Meridith Levinson | Wednesday, August 19 2009

Forget job fairs, cold calling and spamming potential employers with your resume.

Forget job fairs and spamming potential employers with your résumé. If you’re looking for a new job, networking should be your primary job search strategy, according to the results of a recent survey by Challenger, Gray and Christmas.

The outplacement firm asked HR executives to rate on a scale of one to five which of nine job search methods were most effective: networking, using social networking sites, targeting management recruiting firms, using online job boards, applying to jobs via an employer’s website, cold-calling employers, sending unsolicited résumés to employers, responding to newspaper classified ads and attending job fairs.

Networking came out on top, with a 3.98 rating and nearly half of hiring managers (48 percent) ranking it a five (with five being the best).

Hiring managers named online social networking as the second most effective job search tool. They gave websites such as LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter a 3.3 score, with 47 percent of survey respondents rating it four or five.

Targeting management recruiting firms and using internet job boards tied for third place. Both methods earned average ratings of three from hiring managers. Applying directly to a position posted on an employer’s website ranked fourth, with just under a three rating.

The poll results also showed that hiring managers don’t think much of cold-calling. They rated it 2.2 on the five-point scale, which placed it squarely in fifth place.

Responding to newspaper classified ads and sending unsolicited résumés to employers didn’t fare much better, both of which received a 1.7 rating.

Job fairs were deemed the least effective method, garnering a rating of 1.6 on the five-point scale.
Challenger, Gray & Christmas CEO John Challenger stated in a press release that attending a job fair “hardly qualifies as networking” even though job seekers have the chance to meet with company representatives because those company representatives are rarely decision makers. They’re simply there to collect applications, he said. What’s more, he added, many of the employers that do attend job fairs are there to find low-level workers.

Challenger also noted that while searching and applying for jobs over the iInternet is the primary job search strategy for many job seekers, they’d be better served by spending the bulk of their time networking and making the internet their secondary strategy.

“The job search is a multifaceted process,” Challenger stated in the release. “Those who rely on just one tool, even if it is networking, will take longer to find a position. …Job seekers must learn how to use all of the tools at their disposal.”

Challenger, Gray and Christmas conducted the survey early this month, with more than 200 HR executives responding.

via CIO > HR executives reveal best job search tools.

Joe Kolakowski just registered for Improve Financial Performance by Aligning Business and IT on RegOnline

Joe Kolakowski just registered for Improve Financial Performance by Aligning Business and IT on RegOnline

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