When you’re in between jobs, it’s an overwhelming experience. There’s an overflow of too much well-intentioned advice. Everyone’s telling you what you must absolutely do to succeed in the pursuit of a new job. Your parents offer stale advice that’s 30 years old. Colleagues—who moved jobs two years ago—give unsolicited guidance, but have no idea how out of touch they are with the current Covid-19 job market. All sorts of so-called experts come out of the woodwork and weigh in—for a hefty price tag, of course.
Allow me to simplify the process, Marie Kondo-style. Here are the core basics of what you need to do in the job hunt—without all of the drama and fanfare.
Too often, people jump into a job search without seriously contemplating their next move. They lack a definitive goal and a system of actions to achieve it.
You’ll see this on LinkedIn when members post a banner with the #opentowork hashtag on their profile photo. They’ll write something like, “Hi, Covid-19 happened and I lost my job.” Then, they’ll add, “Please help me!”
I get why they do this, but it’s not terribly helpful. The job seeker hasn’t clearly stated what they’ve accomplished in their career, the type of job they want next, the reasons why they are suitable and appropriate for that type of role and the specific help they require.
Tell prospective hiring managers, recruiters, people in your network and random strangers how awesome you are and the specific role you covet. Politely ask if they could please introduce you to the appropriate hiring manager, human resources and decision-making personnel, along with a positive recommendation.
Before you jump head-first into the search, ensure that you possess the appropriate skills, background and experience. This market is too brutal and unforgiving to expect that you’ll get an interview and job offer just because you show up.
Over 60 million Americans have filed for unemployment since March. On a daily basis, we continue to see major corporations conducting massive layoffs. With all of this competition, you need to possess all of the right stuff to garner attention.
If you think you’re a smart person, can figure things out and succeed in the role, that’s not enough. No one in this environment has the time to deal with someone who isn’t a direct on-target fit. They desire a plug-and-play person who can hit the ground running from day one. There are too many other people out there for a company to settle on a less-than-perfect fit. It sounds harsh, but management feels, “Why shouldn’t we continue looking until there are applicants that meet or exceed the appropriate criteria at a cost-effective price?”
If you’re chasing an illusionary goal, you’ll waste precious time. Yes, I know. Everyone has a friend who has secured an amazing job without all of the necessary experience. That’s the exception. We are not them.
Clearly articulate the background and skill set you possess that make you a great fit for the position you’re applying to. It’s shocking how many people can’t tell and sell their own story. They stumble, fumble and go around in circles. This won’t fly. The interviewer will get frustrated with your inability to formulate a cohesive narrative and tell you that it was nice meeting with you and they have other people to see.
You must put together a marketing pitch to sell yourself. Just because you have 20 years of experience—and anyone can say that they’re at the top of their field—is not a sufficient enough reason to hire you. You have to sell them on yourself. Don’t say, “I shouldn’t have to sell myself, as my reputations and knowledge speaks for itself.” No, it doesn’t. You have to sell yourself hard. You also need to have a tight, concise pitch that tells a compelling story of your relevant background, how you’ll add value and why you’d succeed in the job. Practice until it sounds organic.
Nobody really likes networking. Unless you’re one of those gregarious, outgoing folks, it’s kind of icky. However, you must do it. Get on any and all career-related meetups online. Join all sorts of networking groups. Seek out top recruiters in your niche. Brand and market yourself on LinkedIn. Find relevant people to connect with, including human resources, talent acquisition and hiring managers. Comment on their posts and share your insights to brand yourself as a leader in your space.
The search can last for many months, which can feel like years. There will be heartaches and roller-coaster ups and downs. You’ll be depressed with brief periods of elation. People will be rude, inconsiderate and unsympathetic. You’ll lose faith in people and feel miserable.
This can’t stop you. You need to persevere forward—despite all of the hurdles and obstacles in your path. Take the rejection, pick yourself up, brush yourself off and start over again and again. Stay mentally and emotionally strong. The search may take one month or more than six months, but eventually you will get that great new job!
Nothing is better for the bottom line than employees who are motivated to work for psychic benefits. Are you looking for ways to motivate your..
In our world in general, but especially in the workplace, change is a continual presence. Whether it's driven by new technology, shifts in the market,..
If you work in recruitment, you’ve probably heard the saying, “You need experience to get experience.” In job listings, we’re often guilty of writing “zero..
As a startup founder, you’d usually spend a large part of your time trying to get various people to do new things. On one side,..
“Why do we keep following the process if it doesn’t work?” You’ve probably heard something to the effect of this before or have even said..
Are you the type of workaholic that has a difficult time sitting still during holidays? Do you typically go stir crazy during family visits or..
It happens all the time. You start out the day with great intentions to get that financial report done or to work on your marketing..
With nearly a billion members worldwide, LinkedIn is the most powerful professional platform for connecting with others, bar none. That fact is not lost on..
A lot can be riding on the outcome of corporate brainstorming sessions. The list includes the need to come up with ideas for the creation..
HR activities at startups are often reactive in nature instead of proactive. That leaves gaps in the system. When starting their businesses, most entrepreneurs tend..
Some jobs have very clear lines between when you’re “on” and when you’re “off,” while in others the lines are blurred — or potentially nonexistent...
Motivating yourself is hard. In fact, I often compare it to one of the exploits of the fictional German hero Baron Munchausen: Trying to sustain..
Not long ago, I received a call from an HR manager at a large corporation seeking an executive coach for one of their senior leaders...
I recently spent a month interviewing the group heads of a large financial services company in order to understand how their direct reports need to communicate..
The summer vacation season may be behind us, but the holidays are right around the corner. And soon enough your colleagues may be asking you..
I recently met with a group of managers to discuss ways to improve meetings. Our goal was to figure out how to create a space..
Extroversion and introversion are used to define two ends of a personality spectrum. People can have a mix of introverted and extroverted traits, and we..
We’ve all been there. You email someone asking for a conversation, information, input, or an introduction, and you get no response. Whether you are reaching..
Whether you’re looking to leave your current position for an opportunity that your company couldn't offer, or perhaps for a completely new career, or a..
Talking about office disasters is key to better productivity and healthy competition. We all have our share of office-related horror stories. From the incorrect market..
What does it take to become a successful entrepreneur? Vision, forward-thinking, risk-taking abilities, determination, hard work, dedication, a good game plan…. Most of us are aware..
Should you stay in your current role in hopes of a promotion or make a lateral, internal job change? That question will be familiar to..
It’s time to face the situation and to find out what you can do in order to break the dangerous cycles. Here are 5 main..
For many people, giving and receiving feedback can be incredibly stressful. When you have poured your heart and soul into your work, having someone offer..
As the year is slowly coming to an end, it's a great time to gaze into our crystal balls and see what may happen in..
Back when our Facebook design team still fit around a conference table, a new designer joining our merry band was a momentous event. Everyone loved..
Finding good people is hard, but it's the only way to build a company that can succeed in the long term. Not that long ago,..
In 2018, I came across a meme that was going viral on the Internet. It read, “You have the same number of hours in the day..
Creating a learning culture in the workplace is all about fostering an environment that empoweres people to pursue knowledge. This is important for individual evolution,..
I started my career in academia, where mentoring bright young minds is commonplace. Years later, mentoring and coaching others was one of the best parts..
Why wait for the new year to make bold changes in your work and life? Customarily, we coast from about Thanksgiving Day to the beginning..
When was the last date you took a vacation? Did you know that not taking a break also has consequences? The Mexican startup Worky, a..
Here's how to jumpstart your career and achieve meaningful success by age 30. It’s no secret that with age, comes wisdom (generally speaking). Over the years, I’ve..
It is crucial to tap into the different personality traits in your workplace to cultivate a supportive, inclusive atmosphere. There are extensive studies in personality..
The summer season can make it hard to focus on work. And if you work from home, it is that much more challenging. For example,..
Email is an extremely useful communication tool in business. Less intrusive than a phone call, email is convenient and fast. It empowers entrepreneurs to run..
Regardless of industry, job hunting remains a competitive process. Potential employees often look for out-of-the-box ways to distinguish themselves from other candidates; however, they still..
Did you know that Beyonce’s shy? Most people don’t expect this, because she’s so hugely successful and we tend to equate success with outgoing people...
Dr. Robert Cialdini is the CEO of Influence at Work, the author of New York Times bestseller Influence, New and Expanded: The Psychology of Persuasion, and an expert..
Establishing a personal brand is critical for future success. A muddled idea of who you are or what you can offer can mean a lot..
The world is constantly changing, and successful organizations adapt to new circumstances. The ability of organizations to adapt depends on their professionals being willing and..
Faced with increasing challenges, there are new shifts and changes in today’s corporate world. High levels of competition, new technological advances, demographic adjustments, political turbulence,..
Where do you see yourself in five years? Anyone who thought they knew where their lives would be five years ago is probably re-evaluating their..
Your boss may be extremely clear in spelling out your job expectations, setting goals, adding to your do-list and measuring your performance, but she may..
The COVID-19 pandemic has caused an interruption for businesses around the globe. It is an unsettling time for everyone as we are all unsure of..
“Ugh, I got called in for an interview on Friday, but I don’t really want to go,” a friend moaned to me last week. In..
I got into management earlier than many of my friends and colleagues, and now I find myself becoming the go-to resource for when they're struggling..
It’s time all organizations make what could be the most strategic decision in decades regarding organizational structure: Move the learning and talent development functions out..
According to anthropologist Ray Birdwhistell, who pioneered the original study of nonverbal communication called "kinesics," face-to-face conversation is less than 35% verbal. In comparison, more than..
How to adopt the “us versus the problem” rather than a “you versus me” mind-set. Your first step in resolving a conflict should be to..
Ever find that it’s noon and you haven’t accomplished anything on your to-do list? Get a productive jump-start on the day with these tasks. I..
Fascinated by habits and patterns, I started to observe and pay attention to find value in my day-to-day activities — the ones we always do..
You can hire the best team in the world, but if they can't communicate well, you won't get very far. A business owner I know..
Raising awareness is the key to inclusion. We’re all fighting against centuries of conscious and unconscious bias in the workplace. The first step is acknowledging..
People-pleasers often find themselves doing things they don’t want to do and putting the needs of others ahead of their own. When they’re asked to do..
Today’s organizations spend considerable time and energy selecting and recruiting creative talent. And rightly so. Creative employees help their organizations survive and remain relevant in..
People who are on the job hunt regularly feel dejected and disenchanted with the interview process. They'll point to a multitude of reasons as to..
“It’s a new goal-setting framework.” That was one of my large enterprise clients’ attempt at an inspirational rallying cry for their rollout of Objectives and..
What do you do? It’s a question that comes up repeatedly at both virtual and in-person networking events. It’s a dreaded question. You tell people..
You walk through the revolving door of the lobby toward the elevator, soaking in your surroundings—there’s not a familiar face in the building. You straighten..
“I blew it,” said my client, Deborah, a sales exec with a mid-sized tech company. Her conversation with another executive had not gone very well...
When you’re on the job hunt or navigating the upward trajectory of your career, sometimes you just need a little pep talk. It can be..
Back in the day, company leadership would decree their mission and hand down their goals to all their employees. While a few companies still do..
People have been furloughed or let go at alarming rates these past few months. Never before has the job market experienced this type of shift...
Arguably, mornings are the most important part of the day. They can springboard us into a day filled with productivity and inspiration or trigger our..
The Covid-19 pandemic has caused devastation and destruction. It's not just a health crisis any longer. The outbreak and governmental measures enacted to deal with..
“Smile and the world smiles with you, cry and you cry alone,” goes the song. For decades, singers have crooned about the power of smiling..
How To Jump Start Your Job Search With Advice From 15 Career Experts Like millions of other Americans and people throughout the world, you may..
As we put July firmly in the rearview mirror and enter August, I can’t help but reflect on how unique this month is every year...
Here’s How You Can Be Indispensable At Work During the pandemic as workers adjusted to working from home as many people work even harder than..
It’s Time To Take Control Of Your Career Why do so many people wind up in jobs that they regret, even when faced with so..
10 Things You Need To Know To Win In Business And Life “Out of suffering have emerged the strongest souls; the most massive characters are..
Landed Out Of Work? Ten Ways To Reset Your Mindset If you've been furloughed or laid off in recent months, you’re in the company of..
Recruiters Share 9 Mistakes Job Seekers Are Making Amid The Coronavirus Pandemic Beyond the enormous human toll coronavirus has had over the past few weeks,..
Your Words Have Impact, So Think Before You Speak Do you know of those people who fly off the handle without stopping to think about..
Why Empathy Is One of the Most Overlooked Skills in Business It was a sunny day in April. The air was crisp and the walk..
In a difficult job market, you may find yourself needing to consider job openings that wouldn’t be on your radar during normal times. While all..
How To Job Hunt During The Coronavirus Pandemic Caroline CastrillonContributorCareersI write about career, entrepreneurship and women’s advancement. According to the U.S. Department of Labor, over..
The Zero-Sum Mindset: How to Avoid Toxic Thinking in Moments of Crisis Believing that in order to win, others must fail is a critical mistake..
Now’s The Time To Build A Virtual Super-Team. Here’s How. Before the SARS-CoV-2 and COVID-19 outbreak, millions of Americans worked from home. Suddenly, tens of..
The Art Of Working Remotely: How To Ensure Productivity Working remotely isn’t a new concept. People in all kinds of career fields have been doing..
The Key To Carrying Out A Productive And Effective Job Search In my experience as a career coach, I have found that people who are..
Retain More Employees With Stay Interviews Employees are quitting in droves, according to a recent Wall Street Journal article, backed up by hard data from..
3 Things You Need To Know About A February Job Search There’s no bad time to look for a job, but there are seasonal trends..
3 Ways To Promote Yourself And Advance Your Career For Free In today’s digital world, if you don’t have a stellar social media presence, you..
Hire Without Looking At A Resume We’re all more than what’s on our resume. But while a lot of leaders pay lip service to that..
8 Things You Should Not Do In Meetings Meetings are perhaps the most powerful personal branding tool there is—when you master them. They also make..
What Are The Top 10 Soft Skills For The Future Of Work? The future of work is likely to herald a wide range of new..
Resolution Hacks That Actually Work It’s that time of year again, when we all make New Year's resolutions. But will this year be any different..
Move Over, Work-Life Balance. Hello, Work-Life ‘Integration’ As a busy executive, Margaret Keane has had to find creative ways to fit time with her family..
How To Turn Down A Job Offer Without Burning Bridges Sometimes you have to make the difficult decision to turn down a job offer. It’s..
How To Spend Your Working Day Wisely And Actually Get Things Done Time doesn’t discriminate. The CEO of a Fortune 500 company with an overloaded..
How To Prove You Can Do The Job, Even Without Direct Experience "Tell me about a time you...." As a career switcher, you may be..
7 Unexpected Career Detours That Can Benefit You When most professionals introduce themselves or create a LinkedIn profile, they appear to have a smooth, well-planned..
Four Myths You Should Ignore If You Want To Advance Your Career In today’s competitive corporate landscape, standing still is equivalent to moving backward. No..
Six Sacred Rules For Personal Branding In The Digital World Everything has gone digital – including you. The move to all things digital may have..
3 Things You Need To Know About An October Job Search Seasonal timing has a large impact on a job search. It can work in..
Belonging At Work Is Essential—Here Are 4 Ways To Foster It In the complex study of human psychology, one finding is remarkably consistent: our well-being..
How To Avoid The Five Emotional Pitfalls Of A Job Search Spoiler alert: your job search will be anxiety-inducing, frustrating, and at times, painful. It..
11 Signs You're Not Managing Your Calendar Effectively Time to admit there's a better way to stay on top of your appointments. If you’re like..
How To Make A Great First Impression At Your New Job You only get one chance to make a first impression, so make it count...
How To Connect With Your Company's Purpose And Values Some employees feel fully inspired by their company's mission, vision and values. But they don’t just mindlessly glug the Kool-Aid—they connect on a deep,..
What Not To Do After A Job Interview The waiting period after a job interview can be one of the most stressful times. You’ve done..
3 Surprising Reasons Your Job Search Still Isn't Working It’s been months into your job search and you’re just about ready to pull your hair..
Why Attitude Is More Important Than IQ When it comes to success, it’s easy to think that people blessed with brains are inevitably going to..
Video Interviewing: Lights, Camera -- But No Connection Nothing screams “personal” more than you on a 20-inch video monitor, beaming in from a remote location..
Overloaded And Overwhelmed? Four Things You Can Control When Your Workload Is Out Of Control Our research indicates a terrifying 43% of knowledge workers do..
A Career Summer Checkup For Professional Growth Whether you’re graduating college or gearing up for your first fiscal year-end performance conversation, the summer months represent..
6 Steps To Unleash Your Inner Polymath And Thrive At Work In a previous article I explored some of the virtues of striving for a..
The One Daily Action That Will Make You More Successful And Happier At Work In our fast-paced world where we have more to do than..
Congratulations! You got the job. Now for the hard part: deciding whether to accept it or not. How should you assess the salary as well..
What It Takes To Be A Great Employee: The Parable Of The Oranges Being a great employee pays off with better positions, higher pay, and..
10 Essential Strategies To Succeed In Your First Job Congratulations, graduate! After the exhausting and stressful process of finishing school, searching for and landing your..
How To Escape The Procrastination Doom Loop When you imagine a highly productive person, you likely think of someone who focuses effortlessly on the job..
8 Clues That a Candidate Will be an Exceptional Employee Over the past 40 years, I have reviewed at least 30,000 resumes and LinkedIn profiles..
4 Smart Ways to Increase Employee Retention Keeping your employees once you have them is a thorny problem in the staffing services industry. The difficulty..
Here's How To Recover From A Career Setback Whether you’ve botched an interview question, cancelled an important meeting last-minute or missed a typo in an..
10 Tips for an Effective Meeting
Here’s what recruiters look for on a candidate’s social media profile Maintaining the right balance between being professional and being yourself on social media can..
How to conduct an effective job interview As the employment market improves and candidates have more options, hiring the right person for the job has..
14 Things You Should Never, Ever Say In A Job Interview It’s always intimidating to interview for a new job, whether you’re fresh out of..
How To Answer Why You Left (Or Want to Leave) Your Employer If you want the job, don't reveal this. Job interviews are designed to..
Here's how to write a LinkedIn summary that could help you land your dream job, according to a marketing director at LinkedIn You might approach..
14 Ways to Stay Focused at Work Through the Holidays We’re in the midst of the holiday season, and as you try to juggle parties,..
3 Ways You Can Help Your New Hires to Succeed Filling a vacant position is expensive, and unless you do these three things, it's liable..
Three Ways To Prevent Someone From Stealing Your Spotlight In A Meeting We've all been there at one point or another. You're in a meeting,..
Are your employees integrators or segmentors? An organization has both integrators and segmentors. Being a segmentor is a tough ask. If you choose to be..
Updating Your Résumé Might Mean Updating Yourself It seems like a total no-brainer: you should update your résumé and online profiles when you are job..
Putting Yourself In Drive: How To Tap Into Your Motivation The one common component in every great success story is motivation: an ever-elusive elixir that..
How To Bounce Back When The Job Search Gets You Down With a dream job in mind, an updated résumé in hand and responses to..
When 'What Happens In Vegas' Ends Up In Your Job Search What happens in Vegas really doesn’t stay there. That “funny” picture about that..
How To Develop More Emotionally Intelligent Employees In the quest to develop leaders who will foster a culture of equity and inclusion in the workplace,..
5 Steps to Hiring the Right People for Your Business "Hire slow, fire fast" is great advice, but it's not always easy to follow. The..
4 Entry-Level Jobs That Will Prep You for Entrepreneurial Success Success is a journey, not a destination, so think hard about where to start. Entrepreneurship..
How to get back on track when you’re having an unproductive day A rocky start shouldn’t dictate your entire workday. Do these things to reverse..
Your Workforce Tools Are More Strategic Than You Might Think This is not a typical article about attracting talented job candidates or retention — while..
Don’t Let ‘Meaning’ Be Missing From Your Engagement Strategy Meaning is one of the five keys in building employee engagement and it may be the..
4 Ways To Inspire Change In Your Employees Have you ever listened to a speech that inspired you so much, you were ready to make..
7 Ways to Incent Employees to Feel and Act as Owners Building accountability into your business culture is a leadership process. It can't be driven..
Don't Shuffle People Into the Wrong Job Just Because They're Already on the Payroll You grow your company by putting proven performers where you need..
Tips for Minimizing Workplace Negativity To Deal with Negativity in the Workplace, Use These 9 Tips Nothing affects employee morale more insidiously than persistent workplace..
This Is the No. 1 Reason Why People Fail at Switching Jobs (and What to Do About It) There's a reason changing careers is so..
Didn't Get Your Dream Job? This 1 Technique Could Get You a Second Chance Every job seeker experiences this at least once, if not several..
The Best Way to Set New Employees Up for Success Create an onboarding program that's both meaningful and memorable Congratulations; you've just hired a terrific..
Do This In Your First Hour, Day, Week, And Month Of Your New Job Getting settled into your new job is the ultimate act of..
7 Ways Modest Leadership Increases Team Success When we imagine the traits of successful leaders, whether they are managers, high level executives, CEO's or owners..
Managing employee stress during the festive period More than half of employees feel stressed in the weeks leading up to Christmas, with most calling for..
How to Avoid the No. 1 Reason People Leave Their Jobs William James, the father of psychology, stated that the most fundamental psychological need is..
Nine Things You Should and Shouldn't Do If You Lose Your Job Most of us wouldn’t think to associate the words "joblessness" and "fun," but..
It's all about potential: how to write a CV with no work experience Follow these tips to stand out among competing candidates – from research..
The Best Ways to Reward Employees. Having an effective reward program in place can help solve many of your HR issues. Every company needs a..
Burnout at Work Isn’t Just About Exhaustion. It’s Also About Loneliness More and more people are feeling tired and lonely at work. In analyzing the..
People Don’t Take HR Seriously; Here’s Why That’s Dangerous Legacy beliefs like being the bad guy and a lack of strategic vision isolates HR, and..
Think Strategically About Your Career Development In a world where the average employee sends and receives 122 emails per day and attends an average of..
Diversity Doesn’t Stick Without Inclusion Leaders have long recognized that a diverse workforce of women, people of color, and LGBT individuals confers a competitive edge..
How To Advance Your Career In A Crappy Entry-Level Job Yes, you can still bring yourself one step closer to snagging that dream job even..
What causes burnout and how it can affect both the employees and the organisation How HR Can Help Prevent Employee Burnout An engaged workforce. It's..