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If you love your job, don’t read this.

We wouldn’t want to tempt you with our great  new job opportunities 

Wednesday
Feb092011

How job seekers can overcome phone interviews easily

BY Kelly Aldridge

Phone interviews are becoming a common way for employers to screen potential employees during the hiring process. Unlike traditional, in-person job interviews, phone interviews are usually fairly short, require less preparation, and can even be outsourced by the employer if necessary. These features make phone interviewing an effective way to narrow down the list of candidates before scheduling in-person interviews. Unfortunately, many people are not comfortable conducting a conversation of that importance over the phone. If the prospect of a phone interview makes you nervous, these tips can help turn an awkward interview into a confidence-inspiring success.

Preparation is the Name of the Game

When preparing for a phone interview; don’t forget that not all recruiters and employers schedule them ahead of time. At any moment, a recruiter could stumble across your resume or an employer could decide to call you in regards to a recent application. Your chances for success in your job search will be greatly improved if you try to always expect the unexpected (especially during a job interview).

Keep Your Resume Near the Phone

Knowing that you could get a call from a recruiter or an employer at any moment; you should always keep a recent copy of your resume near the phone. That way, whether or not your phone interview is anticipated, you will have all the information you need right at your fingertips. Of course for a job interview, your resume is not the only resource you should keep handy.

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Wednesday
Feb022011

The Job Market is returning, Consumer confidence is up, The GDP is going up...

So what does this mean to you the candidate or the hiring manager?

As a candidate, it means there are more job openings, you can expect multiple job offers and recruiters will be calling you more.  So as a candidate, you need to make sure you are networking, your resume is ready and you start polishing your interview skills.  Also you need to expect more competition for jobs, because not only will all the unemployed be looking, the one who stopped looking will return and those who are working but don’t like their jobs or want something new will start looking because there will be more job opportunities that will get them excited.

As a hiring manager, this means candidates will have more choices, so if you are not selling your opportunity they will move on to the one that sounds better.  In addition, as the number of jobs increase there will be less fully talented/qualified people for each job.  You can no longer use a job description with 15 requirements and wait until you find someone with all 15.  If you do, then you may never find them.  Also, because a candidate has more choices, candidates may not wait on you and your extended interview process.  Everyone we are placing today is in situations where they are interviewing with multiple companies and are receiving multiple job offers.  Thus you can expect to start to see candidates leave your interview process and take another offer or may reject your offer because the other one is much better. 

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Tuesday
Feb012011

The Rules of Engagement for Successful Networking

In its most fundamental definition, networking is the outreach to others for the purpose of engagement.  It is often ongoing communication in what has become a very fragile milieu of friends, associates, former coworkers and frequently, complete strangers.

Networking allows each of us to make an attempt to get what we need from others. It is also a key element to any job search. As such, the trick is to do it in a way that prevents you from driving those with whom you network crazy.

How we go about our networking is important because in the end, if networking isn’t effective, there’s little reason to continue doing it. There are many rules of engagement for networking; to ignore them is high-risk behavior that can leave you out in the cold.

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Monday
Jan242011

Top Reasons Resumes Are Rejected

It’s very discouraging to send countless resumes out into the world, and hear absolutely nothing back. It’s hard not to take it personally. Yet if you talk to hiring managers about why they reject most resumes, the reasons are pretty predictable. One of the most common is that the resume shows the applicant is overqualified. In other words, they’re too good for the job! (It sounds better put that way, doesn’t it?)

At the large school where my sister worked, they were looking for an office secretary. Among the applicants? A woman with a degree in marine biology! She wasn’t offered the job. My sister’s comment: “Wow, she must really have been desperate to apply for that!”

So why would someone apply for a job they were clearly overqualified for, by experience and/or education?

A few of the most common:

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Thursday
Jan202011

What is Your Biggest Weakness? How to Answer in an Interview

What is your biggest weakness? Is a common job interview question. It can be a tricky question to answer, but with the proper preparation, you will give a winning response.

Before you learn how to answer the question, let’s look at the reasons the question is asked during a job interview, so you have a better understanding of what the interviewer wants to know.

The question about your weakness is to find out a few of things about you. Are you self aware and know what your strengths and weaknesses are? This is important because people who are know themselves, are usually people who can learn and grow both personally and in the job.

The question is also asked to discover if you are honest about yourself to others. A good team member can recognize his weaknesses and admit them to others. No one wants to work with a person who thinks he walks on water and is never willing to admit he is wrong.

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Wednesday
Jan192011

Gimmicks Are Deadly in a Job Search

There is a strong temptation in today’s highly competitive job market to go for gimmicks to make one’s resume stand out from the crowded field. The temptation is particularly strong after a number of rejections.

Avoid gimmickry like the plague.

There are rare occasions when a really creative tactic works, but most of them will backfire and make a resume stand out for all the wrong reasons. Still some applicants–especially entry and mid-level professionals– resort to outlandish devices.

“It’s really disheartening when you send your resumes out and get nothing in return,” says Cynthia Shapiro, a career coach for those searching for jobs. “It just makes people feel like they have to do something crazy to get noticed.”

Here are some examples of the more off-the-wall gimmicks cited in a recent Wall Street Journal article.

A junior marketing professional attempted to send his resume by homing pigeon. The bird never returned.

In another instance, a resume was cut into pieces and enclosed in a Russian stacking doll.

An electronic key chain and note were attached to a resume, saying, “The only noise you’ll hear out of me are the ones generated by this letter.”

A candidate thought it was a good idea to bring a Rubik Cube to an interview to demonstrate problem-solving skills.

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Monday
Jan172011

How the Most Successful Candidates Interview

We’ve conducted hundreds of interviews, and have seen time and again how a successful candidate differentiates themselves during the process from their less successful peers. Yesterday, the New York Times published an interesting snapshot of how one candidate’s interview skills evolved over the course of his search.

In past blog entries, we’ve detailed some amazing instances of baffling candidate behavior , but beyond the obvious “red flags” of arriving late without good reason, demonstrating unfamiliarity with germane, public information, or showing up in dress socks and Birkenstocks , there are plenty of other ways to make or break one’s candidacy.

One key factor under a candidate’s complete control is their preparation, approach to, and execution of the interview process.

Preparing for an interview involves more than reading the company’s annual report, latest press releases, or executive bios, and starts long before one sits down across the table from the hiring executive.

Early on, when discussions begin with the search professional, a savvy candidate will carefully review and analyze the position specification and tailor their resume as specifically as possible – including clear, concrete accomplishments that directly address the responsibilities and requirements of the position.

This exercise, beyond making one look as well-suited and attractive as possible on paper, forces critical thinking and specific self-assessment: why am I best suited for this opportunity and what is my value proposition to the hiring executive and the organization? It lays out the framework for subsequent communication, and crystallizes and prioritizes relevant experiences and accomplishments from one’s background – again targeted as closely as possible to the particular opportunity.

During early discussions, successful candidates get as much information as possible from the search professional and other sources, including the typical and requisite study of financial filings, analyst reports, and other industry media. They ask thoughtful questions about what success will look like in both the short- and long-term, perspectives on the hiring executive and company culture, and generally what expectations are for the person in the role.

 

How the Most Successful Candidates Interview cont’d

In terms of mindset, the best candidates approach the meeting with the hiring executive as if they were a consultant – seeking to understand what “issues” the hiring executive is confronting and how they represent the best solution. Too many people get so caught up in trying to sell themselves from the first handshake that they forget to LISTEN. The vast majority of the time, if you let them, the hiring executive will spell out upfront, in crystal clear terms, what it is they are looking for, and what critical “issues” they are looking to solve. Successful candidates tailor their message and responses as specifically as possible – remembering it is not about “them” in the abstract, it’s about how they represent the “solution” to the hiring executive’s needs.

A good “interviewee” doesn’t get overly personal or bogged down in anecdotes or ancient, irrelevant history. The best interviews usually take the form of a conversation, not a monologue. Excruciating levels of detail about one’s past are rarely necessary or appropriate, especially in an initial meeting. The best candidates heed the fact that they have limited time to make their case. They keep their answers to questions on point and don’t ramble or get caught in tangents – they never feel compelled to say: “stop me if I am going too far into the weeds/straying too far off course/getting into too much detail.”

The most successful candidates approach the interview with the hiring executive as if they were a professional advisor. Nine times out of ten, if one listens upfront and asks the right questions before and during the interview, the keys to successfully addressing the hiring executives needs will be unmistakable. With appropriate preparation, the best candidates are able to convey – specifically and concisely – that they are the exact “solution” that the hiring executive is looking for.

 

by E. Stuart

Thursday
Jan062011

How to keep your star employees 

You doled out extra vacation days to make up for paltry bonuses to your top performers. After the 401(k) match was cut, you passed out gift cards to remind your stars how much they mattered. In a tough economy, it’s the little things, right?

Wrong. Perks and trinkets are nice, but they won’t keep your best people when things improve. Some 27% of employees deemed “high potential” said they plan to leave within the year, according to a recent survey by the Corporate Executive Board. That rate of dissatisfaction is rising “precipitously” as the economy stabilizes, says Jean Martin, executive director of the CEB’s Corporate Leadership Council, up from just 10% in 2006 and increasing at twice the rate of the general employee population.

That’s the bad news. The good news is that perks aren’t the only way to keep your high performers engaged. They want a mix of recognition and challenges that stretch them without completely stressing them out. Liz Wiseman, a former Oracle executive and author of the bestseller Multipliers, says money “never came up” when she interviewed 75 Fortune 500 managers about the leaders who motivated them most.

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Wednesday
Jan052011

Emerging Trends οf Talent management аnd Challenges οf HRM

 Talent management іѕ a professional term thаt gained popularity іn thе late 1990s. It refers tο thе process οf developing аnd fostering nеw workers through οn boarding, developing аnd keeping current workers аnd attracting highly skilled workers аt οthеr companies tο come work fοr уοur company. Talent management іn thіѕ context dοеѕ nοt refer tο thе management οf entertainers. Companies thаt аrе engaged іn talent management (human capital management) аrе strategic аnd deliberate іn hοw thеу source, attract, select, train, develop, promote, аnd mονе employees through thе organization

Whаt іѕ talent management?

            Thе term talent management means different things tο different people. Tο ѕοmе іt іѕ аbοut thе management οf high-worth individuals οr “thе talented” whilst tο others іt іѕ аbοut hοw talent іѕ managed generally – i.e. οn thе assumption thаt аll people hаνе talent whісh ѕhοuld bе identified аnd liberated. Thіѕ term іѕ usually associated wіth competency-based human resource management practices. Talent management decisions аrе οftеn driven bу a set οf organizational core competencies аѕ well аѕ position-specific competencies. Thе competency set mау include knowledge, skills, experience, аnd personal traits. Talent management іѕ thе recruitment, development, promotion аnd retention οf people, рlаnnеd аnd executed іn line wіth οur organization’s current аnd future business goals. Bесаuѕе іt іѕ aimed аt building leadership strength іn depth, іt сrеаtеѕ flexibility tο meet rapidly changing market conditions. A structured talent management process wіll systematically close thе gap between thе human capital аn organization currently hаѕ аnd thе leadership talent іt wіll eventually need tο respond tο tomorrow’s business challenges.

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Tuesday
Jan042011

Gartner Identifies the Top 10 Strategic Technologies for 2011

Gartner, Inc. recently highlighted the top 10 technologies and trends that will be strategic for most organizations in 2011. The analysts presented their findings during Gartner Symposium/ITxpo.

Gartner defines a strategic technology as one with the potential for significant impact on the enterprise in the next three years. Factors that denote significant impact include a high potential for disruption to IT or the business, the need for a major dollar investment, or the risk of being late to adopt.

A strategic technology may be an existing technology that has matured and/or become suitable for a wider range of uses. It may also be an emerging technology that offers an opportunity for strategic business advantage for early adopters or with potential for significant market disruption in the next five years.   As such, these technologies impact the organization’s long-term plans, programs and initiatives.

“Companies should factor these top 10 technologies in their strategic planning process by asking key questions and making deliberate decisions about them during the next two years,” said David Cearley, vice president and distinguished analyst at Gartner.

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