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15 HR Recruiting Statistics for 2017 (CAPTERRA.com)

Posted by Carolyn Thompson on Oct 31, 2017 in Uncategorized

Having a hard time hiring? 45% of small businesses struggle to find qualified job applicants. (NFIB)

If your typical interview process feels like it’s dragging, that’s because it is. Interviewing takes an average of almost 23 days. (Glassdoor)

We’re booming! Hiring volume in the U.S. increased 58% over the course of 2017. (LinkedIn)

It’s a well-researched, judge-y world out there. A typical applicant will read at least six company reviews before forming an opinion. (Glassdoor)

Everyone’s using software. A full 75% of talent professionals use ATS or some other type of recruiting software to facilitate the hiring process. (Capterra)

It costs the typical small business $1,872 to make a new hire. That’s a lot of money for a little business to shell out! (Monster)

If you can’t get a job, it’s because you’re not on your phone enough! 41% of hiring managers schedule interviews via use text messaging. (CareerBuilder)

Interview scheduling tools had a positive impact on the decision making process for nine out of ten recruits. Software make hiring easier for you and your recruits. (Yello)

By the end of this year, HR cloud software will account for 50% or more of all HR technology spending. Yay, cloud! (Gartner)

What are your employees really up to? 37% of interviewees reported looking for jobs while at their current workplace! (Jobvite)

It’s a buyer’s market. 40% of employers believe that there’s a talent shortage. (ManpowerGroup)

Being personable really does matter. 80% of candidates say they would make a decision because of relationships made while interviewing. (Devskiller)

Good hires vanish fast. It only takes 10 days for the most in demand job candidates to be off the job market. (OfficeVibe)

If your candidate has a bad time, they’re telling everyone72% of candidates who had a negative hiring experience will tell others about it, often online. (Career Arc)

Glassdoor know what’s up when it comes to their rankings. Of employees on the Glassdoor Best Places to Work List, 86% would recommend their employer to a friend, compared to just 49% of general Glassdoor users. (Glassdoor)

https://blog.capterra.com/hair-raising-hr-statistics-recruiters-need-to-know-in-2017/

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The Deciduous Forest – Question of Quality

Posted by Carolyn Thompson on Jun 8, 2016 in Career Path, Lessons Learned

Forest2The job search jungle includes all biomes and species that are all indicative of Carolyn’s vast experience in her field. My name is Cammy Cohen, and as a summer intern at Merito Group I feel I am qualified to speak metaphorically on only one ecosystem. I have chosen the Temperate Deciduous Forest because of its seasonal changes. Unlike the Tropical Rainforest, which has the same temperature and weather patterns from season to season, my summer, winter, spring, and fall are all very different. I am currently a student at Virginia Tech and love being a Hokie. In Blacksburg, everyone is wearing maroon and orange on game day and you can order pizza bigger than your face until 2am. I want to share my glimpse into the professional world and my view as a college student. I truly cannot express my gratitude enough to Carolyn and everyone in this office for investing in me and immediately making me feel like part of the team!

People are always taken aback by the fact that I want to be a recruiter. It seems to be a job that most just people find themselves in rather than set out for as a career. I suppose I am the exception to my perceived rule but so far, I believe this is the right path for me. I believe recruiting is an incredible use of my marketing degree. I don’t just want to market products, I want to market people’s skill sets and ambitions. I want to bridge a company’s needs with what my candidate wants, and market my firm in the process. I want to help people with the next step in their career by reviewing resumes and conducting interviews. But above all, I want what everyone should want from their career- to feel passionate about the work and to know that it has significance.

In the summer months the warm temperatures and ample sunlight harbor the growth of lush vegetation in the forest. In my current position, I am learning and growing as a professional every day. I am currently on a project with one of our clients who is a large government contractor. I am part of a team conducting the initial screening process of many diverse individuals every day.

My peek into the recruiting world has been a fantastic experience thus far, but not without falters in confidence. What I struggled with most was understanding the reason for implementing specific metrics- or why we have metrics at all. My idealistic view of recruiting was focusing on the candidate’s potential, finding the perfect job, and then making a “happy every after.” I was spending upwards of 10 minutes with candidate running through a conversation that should take no longer than 5 and stumbling through the computer software. I was reassured that I was still just learning, but that I wasn’t meeting my metrics meant that I wasn’t doing my job. This weighed on me and made me ask the question “at what point does quantity override quality and does this signify the nature of the industry?”

One day, after staying late in the office I asked this question to two of my colleagues. The question that had been nagging at me every time I opened my underperforming excel sheet. Both of them seemed surprised. My project deals with a high volume of candidates and they assured me I would get the hang of it. But that wasn’t what was concerning me; I wanted to know if this was truly representative of recruiting. They told me they felt the metrics kept them on track and was a fair, quantitative way to monitor progress. I left feeling unsure determined to understand the balance.

The next day I came back a new intern determined to streamline my efficiency without sacrificing the quality of my candidates. I found the best way to navigate the software and strived to keep my conversations concise and meaningful. Everything from this point on has clicked (which is the reason I have time to write this, might I add.) My point here is that everyone was right, I just needed to see it to believe it. So my first lesson has been learned- in a corporate environment there are quantitative standards you are required to meet but the true value of a recruiter is bringing quality alongside those metrics.

This Guest Post was contributed by Cammy, our fabulous summer intern! To see if Cammy has a position for you, apply here: Merito Group Career Opportunities

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The Leapfrog – Being Positive in Career Transition

Posted by Carolyn Thompson on Apr 14, 2015 in Executive Coaching, Interviewing Skills, Job Search, Thinking Positive

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Frog2All frogs hop, but no frog hops like the red-eyed tree frog. The red-eyed tree frog stealthily roams the jungles of Central and South America in a way different from the rest of his rainforest pals. The red-eyed tree frog is not only able to leap great distances quickly, but his feet have distinct sticky pads that allow him to hop from place to place with poise, precision, and grace. It is a given in today’s economy that career transition is the norm. As you navigate the job search jungle, you will want to act with the red-eyed tree frog’s finesse and poise as you leave one employer and interview with the next.

There is never a time when landing with grace is as important as when you are interviewing. Twice in the past couple of weeks, people have been passed over for great job offers because they spent too much time in the interview focusing on why they left something that was broken rather than moving towards something that was better for them. As you leapfrog through the job search jungle, positivity is the key to successfully landing gracefully.

For instance, when the interviewer asks you why you are leaving your present job, this is not an open invitation to bad-mouth your current or past companies. This would not be transitioning with poise.  Even if your experiences have been negative, or if the company has more problems than profits, delving into the miry pit of your poor employment situation will only hurt you. Any negativity you project in the interview will set the tone regarding your personal outlook and most likely reflect poorly on you. The more you detail the negative aspects of your job, the more the interviewer will wonder, “If we hire her, what would he/she be telling other people about us?”

Positivity, on the other hand, pays off. So, how do you frame your story when it’s not all sunshine and roses? It should not be about what you are leaving; the point is you don’t look for reasons why something wasn’t a good fit for you in the same way you may not have been a good fit with the job. There is always something wrong with every organization. You will want to answer why the position you left or are moving towards is or was a positive step. How is it an opportunity for personal learning or professional growth?

Unfortunately, no one is going to pay you more money because you bought a bigger house or because the job you accepted isn’t perfect. However, an employer will pay you more if your expertise is in demand. Try to make the connection between your skills and enthusiasm and why this new job is an even better and exciting opportunity. If you can articulate this, your interview will come across as positive, and you, will be seen as a positive person. You will be transitioning gracefully.

Why is positivity so important? Based on your resume, the interviewer is aware of many of your skills, many of your accomplishments, your employment history, and your education. When they contact you for the interview they are giving you the nod that you could be making the right leap. By the time you are sitting face to face, the interviewer is just trying to figure out how you might fit in with the team, what it would be like working with you day to day, and how you respond to stressful situations in the office. When you demonstrate positivity, you assure them that you will effectively make the daily challenges easier to bare, and you will not bring in an attitude that demoralizes the team.

As you consider your next job, think about that nimble little red-eyed tree frog. Hopping from place to place can be awkward when you are not expressing the positivity necessary for a sticky landing. Your job transition is not about leaving a negative situation, it is always about moving positively towards opportunity.

This post was contributed by Jenny of Merito Group. Visit www.Meritogroup.com for more information and current job openings.

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The Monkey – Swinging Through The Interview Questions

Posted by Carolyn Thompson on Jun 27, 2014 in Interviewing Skills

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Interviewing Questions Series: 5-6 of 29 Monkey2

Answers to popular (and sometimes tricky) questions you might hear in your next interview. Suggestions and requests are welcome in the comments. If you are currently a job seeker, a great way to help you prepare for the interview is to prepare a brief answer to all of the questions here. Download all of the questions here: Interview Prep Guide.

What led you to leave your current job?

If you are currently employed and a recruiter calls you, you don’t necessarily have to find something glaringly wrong with your current employer or work scenario to consider the position(s) they describe. You can actually focus on the positives of why this new company/role is of great interest to you. Perhaps it offers you something new to learn or an innovative way to apply your talents to the benefit of the new organization. Surrounding yourself with new people you can learn from is also considered a positive reason for seeking a job change.

If you are discontent or unhappy at your current employer, do your best to avoid speaking poorly about your boss, the company, the business strategy, the work environment, or politics that may be at play causing your to seek a new position. You never know who knows whom, so keep it light. You could be walking into the office of the spouse of someone you work with. People gravitate toward positive energy, so focus on the good rather than looking for negative reasons to leave your current job.

If you are no longer employed, you will need to be comfortable discussing why you left; especially if it wasn’t by choice. Being let go or transitioned out of a job is a very difficult emotional experience, particularly when you didn’t see it coming. Take some time to reflect on what you could have done differently and what will be important to you going forward so that you can find a positive reason for the separation. Even if it is only in your mind, this will make it easier to discuss in an interview. If you really did make a grievous error and were let go for cause, it’s ok. As long as you can admit to your mistake, know what you need to do to avoid that mistake in the future and be comfortable discussing it factually rather than emotionally, you can get past it.

“When would you be able to start?”

“Within 2 week of acceptance of an offer” is a good place to start when you are still at the interview stage. If you know you need to give 3 weeks at your current employer, then tell the recruiter. What you don’t want to do is get into particulars about your summer vacation plans, your prepaid cruise trip, holiday trips with your family that you always go on and couldn’t possibly miss, or that you will need 2 weeks off for you wedding or your kids’ wedding at a certain point. These are all topics that can be broached AFTER you start. It’s normal for people to have life plans; everyone does. Be aware that you may have to take some of that time off without pay if you haven’t accrued enough personal paid time off.

Plans like this are not something you bring up until you have a written offer in hand and a better understanding of the job cycles and how they correlate with your vacation plans. Many cruises can be rebooked for another date if they coincide with a major deliverable or a beach house deposit can often be moved to another week should need be.

 

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The Bobcat – An Adaptable Predator

Posted by Carolyn Thompson on Jan 23, 2013 in Job Search, Thinking Positive

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In an ever-changing world, job seekers need to become adaptable in order to succeed. Just because opportunities may be limited in your current locale, doesn’t mean they don’t exist. In order to become successful, some creature comforts may have to be sacrificed. Ties that may bind you could be holding you back. There may also be other aspects that could improve your chances of finding a lucrative position in your career of choice.

1. Locale – Much like how the bobcat will alter its location in order to hunt, the job seeker may need to look in other areas to score the job he or she is qualified for. The bobcat will hunt prey that is in abundance in any given location. If the opportunities are slim in one area, this lynx relative will simply choose an easier target or move to an area that has a better supply of what it wants.

Family and friends are important in your life, but being able to support yourself and/or a family has to take priority. If the opportunities are slim for what you want, expand your hunt to encompass areas outside of your city or perhaps even in a different state. You need to survive and if the meal is better in a different location, that is where you need to hunt.

2. Resilience – Although the bobcat has been widely hunted for a variety of reasons, the species stays resilient and continues to flourish. Although you may not land the job of your dreams, your continued resilience will keep the goal in focus. While you may have to accept work in a separate field of study, it doesn’t mean you have to commit yourself to it for the rest of your life.

Obtaining a degree from college can open a new world of possibilities for employment and career choices. However, many students don’t experience that career in their chosen field of expertise. Although you may have to flip hamburgers or bag groceries for a while, it doesn’t mean your aspirations have to be any less. Put food on your table with menial jobs while you hunt for the career you want. Stay resilient in your beliefs of being something more and continue to strive for your goals.

3. Prey – Although the bobcat will prefer a larger dinner, smaller animals will suffice if the game is lacking such delicacies. As stated above, there is nothing wrong with having to settle for a small job if it keeps you alive. If you have to accept something lower than your standards, pounce on it as you would with larger game. A good reference from a present employer can greatly help your chances for furthering your future career options elsewhere.

If it is edible, the bobcat will eat it. View your job seeking methods in the same manner. If you can do it, you might as well. There is nothing binding you at any job if a better opportunity comes your way. However, treat each job like it’s a meal for a starving cat. It may be a rabbit, but it will sustain you until that juicy deer comes along.

Many employers find tenacity a good trait to have. The attitude of never giving up shows that you will continue to strive even when the odds are against you. By being adaptive to your situation, you can flourish while others dwindle. Go into the position with confidence that you are the best candidate for the job.

This guest post was contributed by Allison. Blogging for was a natural progression for Allison once she graduated from college, as it allowed her to combine her two passions: writing and children. She has enjoyed furthering her writing career with http://www.nannyclassifieds.com/. She can be in touch through e-mail allisonDOTnannyclassifiedsATgmail rest you know.

If you have a great idea for a jungle-themed post, let us know! Guest writers or requests are always welcome!

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The Ostrich – Head In The Sand With A Criminal History

Posted by Carolyn Thompson on Sep 10, 2012 in Interviewing Skills, Job Search, Lessons Learned, Thinking Positive

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Ostriches will attempt to avoid dangerous situations by burying their heads in sand and pretending the threat does not exist. Although this saying comes from a false legend about Ostriches, it is true that you cannot avoid risky situations, such as a criminal history in a job search, by pretending that it does not exist.

A criminal history is one of the most difficult things to overcome when it’s time to find a job. Many employers require criminal background checks, or at least self-disclosure of criminal history on applications, and the thought of losing out on an opportunity due to even minor charges lurking in your background can be nerve-wracking. But, this is no reason to lose hope for future employment or faith in your career. In fact, there are many steps you can take to overcome a negative background check during the interview process and even give off a better impression than you would have otherwise. Read on for some steps and ideas:

1. Address it head-on.

If you already know that you have some criminal history on your record that could potentially affect your employment, then it’s a very good idea to address the issue head on. This is something that you have to balance, though. If the charges are light enough, such as a few parking tickets, then you may not want to bring them up at all. If there are some serious misdemeanors or felonies on your record it is never a good idea to stay silent.  Rather than waiting until your interviewer brings it up or (even worse) hoping they don’t notice, take the matter into your own hands and let him or her know in the initial interview stages. You will look much more professional by addressing the issue clearly and honestly than by skirting the possible hesitations of the employer.

2. Tell the truth.

This is probably one of the most important pieces of advice when it comes to dealing with a negative history during a job search. It can be tempting to simply keep this information off your application or make certain charges seem less serious than they really were, but this is almost certain grounds for dismissal if your employer ever learns the truth. If you are honest about your past, many employers will take your honesty into account when they are considering whether to hire you. If you are dishonest, an employer would not be wise to ever consider you for hire. Besides, it is much better to approach a job interview knowing that you are being forthright. Getting through an interview based on lies will only mean that you have to keep up those stories to your boss and everyone else who works there.

3. Discuss what you’ve learned.

If you need to bring up some criminal history during a job interview, try to turn this potential negative into a positive. Depending on the charges and how long ago they occurred, you can use this as an opportunity to discuss your own life with a potential employer and what you’ve learned from past experiences. Everyone has a past, and no one is perfect. If there were issues in your life that caused you to go down the wrong path, own up to them and express why you are a different person now than you were then. Learning from your mistakes does not make you less of an employee, it simply makes you human, and every successful person has gone through trials to get to where they are today.

4. Don’t be picky.

Even though the thought of a future employer uncovering a less-than-stellar background in your past makes you cringe, there is no reason to feel like your life and opportunity for success is over. However, knowing that you have a record that would make many employers look the other way, you have to be prepared for multiple rejections. But, there is always opportunity to re-build and start again. If you have to work in less than desirable positions for a while, then that is what you have to do, but there is always a way to come back from a criminal past, as long as you have a true desire to work hard and continue moving in a positive direction. So keep your head out of the sand!

This guest post was contributed by Jane Smith. Jane is a freelance blogger and writer for http://www.backgroundcheck.org/. She specializes in career issues, managing an online reputation, and making healthy life choices. She welcomes you to email her any questions or comments and can be reached at janesmith161 @gmail.com.

If you have a great idea for a jungle-themed post, let us know! Guest writers or requests are always welcome!

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The Healing River – Affordable Health Insurance Options for the Unemployed

Posted by Carolyn Thompson on Jul 24, 2012 in Thinking Positive

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If you recently lost your job, you may have also lost your health insurance. You have a choice to go without health insurance or to purchase it on your own. If you go without it, you could still visit local, low-cost clinics for your basic healthcare needs. However, if you develop any serious conditions that clinics don’t have the ability to treat, you could find yourself in a terrible financial situation trying to pay back your medical bills.

In most cases, it’s best to have some kind of health insurance at your disposal in case things with your health go seriously awry. Unfortunately, paying for health insurance when you’re unemployed isn’t always easy, especially when you consider that health insurance is typically more expensive for individuals than it is for employees. If you’ve lost your job and are looking for health insurance that will fit into your tight budget, here are a few options you can consider:

High Deductible Health Plans

High deductible health plans, or catastrophic health plans, generally cost less than regular health insurance plans, and they come with much higher deductibles. For instance, you might be able to pay around $50 a month for a high deductible health plan, and your deductible might be around $10,000. A deductible like this may seem pretty high, but signing up for this sort of plan when your options are limited could be worth it. If you needed your appendix removed, for instance, it could cost you around $150,000 without health insurance. With a high deductible health plan, it might only cost you your $10,000 deductible.

Short-Term Health Insurance

Short-term health insurance offers health coverage for a set number of months in exchange for relatively low monthly premiums. You can sign up for short-term health insurance arrangements that cost you as little as $30 dollars a month and that last for up to a year. These temporary health insurance plans generally come with relatively modest deductibles of around $2,000 to $4,000 and allow for a few doctor visits that are mostly covered by the insurance company. If you think you’ll start a new job with health benefits in the next year, this type of insurance could definitely be a good option.

COBRA Continuation Health Coverage

If you previously worked at a company that employed and insured 20 or more workers, you may be eligible for COBRA Continuation Health Coverage. COBRA health coverage is mandated by the federal government. So, insurance companies must offer most displaced workers who were employed at medium and large businesses access to health plans. These plans are a little more expensive for you than other options, however. They generally cost around $250 a month, but they do provide you with all the health coverage you benefited from as an employee, including low-cost doctor visits and a low deductible. In most cases, you’ll be eligible for COBRA Continuation Health Coverage for up to 18 months after you lose your job. If you lost your job due to disability or you lost your health insurance due to divorce, you may be eligible for a COBRA plan for up to 36 months.

There’s no need to go without health insurance, even if you’re unemployed. Allow the river of low-cost insurance to carry you through your unemployment, and protect your health and your finances!

This guest post was contributed by Susan. Susan is a freelance blogger who enjoys writing about automotive and health news, technology, lifestyle and personal finance. She often researches and writes about automobile, property and health insurance, helping consumers find the best insurance quotes online. Susan welcomes comments.

If you have a great idea for a jungle-themed post, let us know! Guest writers or requests are always welcome!

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The Map – A Guide Through The Jungle

Posted by Carolyn Thompson on Feb 14, 2012 in Job Search

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Finding a job in the current climate is a full-time job in itself, but there are ways to make things easier on yourself. Use these points to draw a map to navigate through the job search jungle.

What’s your skill-set?

Firstly, be honest with yourself about the skills you have. Sit down and make a list of the jobs you’ve held in the past, the dates they covered, and the skills required. If you’re an experienced professional, limit your outlines to the most recent ten years. If you’ve been out of the workplace for a while, then list any relevant voluntary posts. If you’re new to the world of work, think about any mentoring or extra-curricular activities you’ve been involved in, including sports or drama. This information forms the basis for the professional experience section of your resume, which in effect is your calling card for jobs and can also be used to help fill in application forms. Other sections typically include some personal details, including how employers may get in touch with you, and relevant educational qualifications. Have a basic prototype curriculum vitae (CV) that you can use as the basis for different types of jobs and industries.

Where are all the jobs?

Secondly, think about the type of job you want, and where those jobs are advertised. Local newspapers and job boards are a great start, but many openings are now advertised only on the Internet. Many appear on professional job boards, but several are advertised only on the website of an organization. Many more openings are not advertised at all, and this is where you need to think laterally about your contacts. Do any of your friends or relatives work in organizations that are hiring? Which school did you attend? Are you aware of any alumni who have gone into businesses that are expanding? What agencies can you think of who deal with your industry, and have you registered with them? What technical and specialist trade magazines are there in your area? Even if they don’t carry situations vacant, the news items offer an insight into companies that are expanding. Many local libraries carry copies of trade magazines, so you can browse at your leisure.

Target your application

Thirdly, once you’ve found a vacancy that looks promising, go through the job description carefully. Make a grid of how your skills and experience are the best possible match for the vacancy, and mentally prepare for your interview by thinking of at least two, preferably three, concrete examples of how you displayed those skills in previous posts. Take your base cv and target it for the post.

Expand your skill-set

If you’re finding that many promising job advertisements you spy ask for skills outside your area, think about how you can upskill yourself. Is there a local college course in your area? Could you work on a voluntary basis for an organization to refresh your skills, and do some good at the same time?

Be realistic

You may also find, especially if changing industries or just starting out, that you need to revise your salary expectations or the type of role you’re willing to take. At the moment, it’s an employer’s market, and although history tells us that everything moves in cycles, flexibility is the key at present. You may also need to be extremely creative in the job titles and keywords you use to carry out your search. Once upon a time, a secretary was a secretary. Now, he or she may go by the title of executive assistant, virtual assistant, or clerical executive. And who’d have thought a librarian’s post would be advertised under the title of information alchemist?

Be patient

However you choose to carry out your job search, be patient. The right job is out there somewhere.

This guest post is contributed by Sally Derby. Sally is an experienced office manager with over twenty years of successful personal job-hunting experience in the administrative field. She writes for Degree Jungle on the topics of interviewing and helping candidates to sell their skills and expertise, on paper and in person.

If you have a great idea for a jungle-themed post, let us know! Guest writers or requests are always welcome!

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The Fire Aftermath – Emerging From the Ashes of Getting Fired

Posted by admin on Feb 14, 2011 in Interviewing Skills, Job Search, Thinking Positive

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Wildfires are unexpected and devastating to the forest but recovery is never impossible. Twice in the past week two people I know very well were fired from their jobs. In both cases, they were told it was for cause and due to performance, or lack thereof. However, neither person was on a “work plan” or hadn’t been given any sort of formal warning. Both are now left nursing unexpectedly shattered egos and holding a bag of bills to be paid.

For them, and for the other readers out there who were recently fired, I thought I would jot a few pointers on how to take some of the burn out of getting fired:

1 ) Give yourself a day to grieve. Let’s face it, this is a shock and you’re mad about it. It’s not fair and you were treated poorly. Once your day of grieving is over, it’s over, and you are moving forward. You and only you can take charge of your destiny. It’s easy to get sucked into negativity so make a conscious effort to not wallow in your misery. Focusing on what you liked about your work and what you are looking for in your new job is a great way to overlook the negative aspects of what just happened.

2 ) Ask yourself what you could have done differently. You have all heard me say this a million times, but the root of all conflict is unmet expectations. What expectation of your former employer were you not meeting? And be honest! There are two sides to every story and if you were fired for cause there is something you did (or didn’t do) that didn’t meet their expectations. Figure out what you could have done differently so that you don’t make the same mistake twice. But don’t beat yourself up about it. Just recognize that might be an area of personal growth and work on it so the same situation doesn’t happen again.

3 ) Get your resume together and show that you are available for work immediately. As unemployment continues to drop, contract and temporary opportunities are on the rise so make sure people know you can start a project or full time job right away. If you need help with your resume, grab a copy of TEN EASY STEPS TO A PERFECT RESUME from Amazon. It will really make the process a lot easier for you.

4 ) Find someone to be a reference for you from your previous job. A lot of people get fired and find out it was a blessing in disguise since they end up moving on to much better positions. The best reference is always a former supervisor and when you’re asked to leave, a former supervisor who has also left is a great person to use as a reference. You can also reach out selectively to people with whom you had good working relationships and ask if they are willing to serve as a personal reference. Many companies have a firm “no reference” policy if you can’t identify an ally who is willing to verify your talents, skills, and employment in your list of former co-workers. How about a vendor you worked with or supplier that you serviced?

5 ) Post your resume on line and make sure your LinkedIn profile is up to date with a status update stating you are looking for work. When you are working with recruiters, it’s important that you don’t displace your personal pressure onto them to perform miracles for you. Maintaining a positive story with as little drama mixed in will make your recruiters work harder for you in the long run. They don’t want to hear another sob story so focus on your strengths and what you want to do so they can really help you out.

6 ) Make a list of companies that you are interested in working for that hire people with your skill sets. A little Googling goes a long way here. Search skill sets, certifications, and industry experience in addition to job titles. This will open up a whole new list of companies you wouldn’t have discovered if you only search for job titles. This and other tips are discussed in TEN STEPS TO FINDING THE PERFECT JOB.

7 ) Start networking. Go through the companies on your list. Know your two sentence description of who you are and what you are looking for so you can let anyone who will listen or read know what your abilities are. 80% of jobs are obtained through networking so get out of your comfort zone and meet people. LinkedIn is an amazing tool that you can reach out to people through. Ask politely for selected professional referrals. Don’t connect with people you are about to interview with or have just interviewed with – that can be uncomfortable for them. Still look them up and see what you might have in common with them so you can discuss it when you meet.

8 ) Prepare for your interview by practicing your answer to why you left your last job first. No one wants to come out and say, “I was fired.” How about, “Unfortunately, my role had evolved and my former employers’ needs changed from when I started so my skill sets were no longer a match. I was sad to leave but I’m glad that it opened a door for me to be able to meet with you today about new opportunities.” It’s imperative that you turn the negative situation into a positive step into the future. It’s ok to admit you have things you are working on to improve and the self realization in and of itself is a step in the right direction.

9 ) Set a schedule to keep yourself busy. Don’t change your routine drastically because you lost your job. Just replace those hours you would have been working with your job search. Keep up your gym schedule, kids schedule, etc. as much as your finances will allow. Use every opportunity you can to network with people asking professionally for referrals.

Listen, many of us have been in this position, so know that you’re not alone. Apply for unemployment and create an executable job search strategy. I know you feel you’ve been treated unfairly but think twice (or three times…) before considering legal action against your former employer. Most states are at will and the only person who gains from suing your old employer is your attorney. Unless you have the financial ability to front 50K in legal fees, just move on because the employee rarely wins.

And one last thing…what goes around comes around. The people that let you go will likely get let go themselves someday and probably be unemployed a lot longer than you now that you’ve laid the groundwork for your success!

Check out these links for more useful tips:

http://jobsearch.about.com/od/salary/a/fired.htm
http://www.wikihow.com/Get-a-Job-After-You’ve-Been-Fired

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The Adaptation – Interviewing Skills

Posted by Carolyn Thompson on Jul 9, 2010 in Building Confidence, Career Path, Executive Coaching, Interviewing Skills, Job Search

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Last month, I had occasion to work with Walter Bond on a project where we were working with unemployed people from all walks of life. With over 20 years of experience in executive search and coaching, I was amazed by Walter’s ability to read people. As a former NBA player and entrepreneur, Walter meets a lot of people in his world and he can spot a poser from a mile away.

Many Americans are unemployed. Our goal that day was to work with a few people who were really struggling to hone their resumes, interview skills, personal appearance, and approach to their job search. Let’s face it; the world doesn’t owe us a living. Some of the people had advanced degrees; some were taking on line coursework towards a degree. As I worked one on one with each person, listening to their stories of getting laid off or fired, it was those people that were open to change that struck me as the ones that will really succeed after being given assistance.

I was amazed at how many people had such poor interviewing skills. One lovely woman had a strong background in bookkeeping and told us she loved it, but when asked what kind of job she was looking for answered, one that works with children. Another woman, with an advanced degree who really wanted to work in program management, had chosen to pursue work as an executive assistant in the hopes that she would land a job with an executive that would see her talents and ultimately chaperone her move her into a similar role.

Those that are willing to adapt and change will find new jobs. Finding new ways to attack a chronic problem is the only way out of a rut. If you’re one of these people, consider how you are answering interview questions. Over the next few weeks we will dissect basic interview questions a few at a time so the next time you are faced with the tough challenge, you will have the basic training to give the appropriate answers and succeed in getting the offer!

Carolyn Thompson

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