Archive for job coach

CareersI was honored to be interviewed last week by Laura Raines, a reporter for the AJC. She mentioned a great resource I have come across and started to read more frequently. Check it out here, it’s Maria Supporta’s weekly email from the Atlanta Business Chronicle, specifically about careers.

Hallie Crawford
Job Coach

P.S. Get one of the most information-rich career newsletters on the web delivered straight to your email inbox! Check out our Free Newsletter to help you along your career journey today!

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ResumeHere is a great report recently from CareerBuilder.com regarding the language you can and can’t use in your resume. This was also reported on the Today Show March 13, 2014 with several good points. Some of the jargon people want to use on their resume means nothing or tells the reader nothing. How many times have you seen or read a resume and not understood what the words meant – or felt like they sounded like fluff? It happens too frequently. When you are writing or revising your resume be very careful to avoid jargon. Ask a friend or family member to review it for you.

Here are some of the terms to avoid:  Go-getter (27 percent), Think outside the box (26 percent), Synergy (22 percent). Great advice… show them the results you provide, demonstrate how you are a go-getter or how you work well in a team, don’t just use the jargon. Read more from this report here.

Hallie Crawford
Job Search Coach

P.S. Are you in the ideal career for you? Find out if you’re in the right career with our Ideal Career Quiz.

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Interview QuestionsI’ve been asked by many clients lately how do I answer those strange interview questions like if I were an animal what would I be? We have all heard horror stories about difficult interviews. One of our clients in Baltimore, Jeff, said he had participated in an interview where he felt they were truly testing his ability to answer questions under stress. They changed the schedule on him several times and asked him to speak to multiple people he wasn’t prepared for. Here are some of the questions I wanted to answer for you regarding odd interview questions (excerpted from the things clients typically ask me) and how to best prepare for them. Read more in our next blog post this week, this will be broken into 2 parts:

Is using strange interview questions  in the hiring process becoming more common?

It is, as employers try to come up with new ways to effectively vet out employees. With so many more applicants per job opening, there are more qualified applicants per opening than ever. It becomes even more important to find ways to determine the right fit. I also think the standard typical what are your strengths and weaknesses questions just don’t cut it anymore because they don’t give enough insight into an employee’s behavior, how they think, and what their work performance might be like. Behavioral interview questions are becoming more common. Employers want to understand how an employee thinks, performs and reacts in order to determine if they’re the right fit. 

Are these kinds of questions used to trick people or to see if they can think quickly on their feet?

Sometimes yes, sometimes no. Some companies do ask trick/tough questions to stump an employee to see how they perform under pressure. Other times the employer truly is trying to get to the bottom of an element that’s important to the position that they don’t just want to ask a yes or no question to. Too many people might just say yes in order to land the job when it’s not completely accurate, or the issue they’re trying to vet out is more complicated than a yes or no closed ended question. Plus employers don’t want you to just say yes you can do something or explain it, it’s much more insightful to have you tell them about a time or situation that demonstrates the skill they’re wanting. Then they can see how that skill was applied.

What are some examples of these questions?

  1. What would your current/former boss say about you that’s positive and negative? [This could be used to find out strengths and weaknesses and how you handle them now, if you are self-aware and pro-active about managing both.]
  2. Why are you leaving your job? [This could be used to find out what went wrong if anything, why you want their job and how you handle a situation where things aren’t working out.]
  1. Tell me about a time when you failed in a professional situation. [This could be used to determine how you handle problem solving and failure.]

Do employers always get the answers they need from them?

If the candidate doesn’t have an answer, stumbles and doesn’t give a good example of what they were actually looking for or hedges and answers another question no, they won’t. Or if the question was not well formed and doesn’t address what they’re actually looking for, it won’t work either. But the majority of the time, it gives the employer information about you and your communication skills, even if it doesn’t divulge what they were specifically looking to find out.

Hallie Crawford
Job Coach

P.S. How do you know if your resume is good? Take this Resume Quiz to find out how to keep your resume out of the trash can.

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Dec
31

Happy New Year!

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Happy New Year!

Hallie Crawford
Job Search Coach

Categories : Current Affairs
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SurveyI was thrilled to be featured in this story on Fox Five Atlanta recently: http://www.myfoxatlanta.com/video?clipId=9415701&autostart=true.

One of the things I wanted to expand upon was how your satisfaction at work can be impacted by your personal life as well. And how important it is to evaluate your satisfaction from a big picture perspective before you make any decisions about what to do next. If you are going through a divorce for example, or a tough time in some way personally, is that impacting how you feel at work?

We are integrated beings, so all areas of our life overlap and can affect each other. I encourage my career coaching clients to look at their satisfaction. Not just in their job, but also in their personal life and in specific areas to see if their unhappiness is bleeding into their job from another place. This is not always the case, but it is important to look at your satisfaction in all areas, just in case. Also you have to know that improving things personally, can often affect your work life. It is not a magic bullet and to say that a job that is just not a fit will suddenly become so. Because career change is a big deal, we want to make sure we are doing it for the right reasons, and take the right next steps to improve it.

When you are evaluating your happiness, look at everything on the table. Make changes in each area so that you are working towards the life you want overall and not just the job you want, because each will impact the other.

Gallup survey: http://thegallupblog.gallup.com/2013/06/gallup-releases-new-findings-on-state.html

Hallie Crawford
Job Coach

P.S. Get one of the most information-rich career newsletters on the web delivered straight to your email inbox! Check out our Free Newsletter to help you along your career journey today!

Categories : Nurture Your Career
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Job SearchLast week was a big week for me for media interviews. I was honored to be contacted by each of these publications. Here is an article I was happy to be featured in by USNews.com, How to Turn a Long-Distance Job Search Into a New Long-Term Job.

I wanted to share some tips with you and some additional advice as well…

  1. Mentally prepare for the potential obstacles in this type of job search. The potential employer may prefer someone local. You need to understand how you can stand out from the crowd and market yourself as the best choice given that you’re far away.
  2. Realize that your distance could actually give you an advantage, an expanded network, a new perspective on a different market or location. Be prepared to mention that in an interview, if it applies to the industry that you are looking in.
  3. Be prepared to negotiate. To be realistic, you may need to be willing to bend on their relocation package if needed. Consider moving yourself if you really want the job and this is a sticking point for example.
  4. Make sure you’ve estimated finances correctly and the cost of living for the new location before looking at that location and the average salaries for the jobs in your industry in that area. How far will your salary go?
  5. Join as many networking groups as possible, online and otherwise to expand your network quickly.

Hallie Crawford
Job Coach

P.S. Get one of the most information-rich career newsletters on the web delivered straight to your email inbox! Check out our Free Newsletter to help you along your career journey today!

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Job SearchYou’ve heard it before – looking for a job is a job in itself! If you’re starting a job search, you must have tracking methods to keep tabs on your action steps and progress.

The following are some essentials you’ll need to know what you’ve done, who you’ve seen, and what you need to do next in your job search:

  • Computer and a printer for emailing your resume and cover letter to prospective employers.
  • Quality resume paper, matching blank resume paper, matching envelopes, and stamps for snail mailing your resume to prospective employers.
  • Computerized or paper calendar to track the date you mailed a resume as well as the date you need to call to follow-up.
  • Computerized calendar or paper appointment book with times for scheduling interviews.
  • Professional message on your voicemail to take messages from prospective employers when you’re not available to answer the phone.
  • An agreement with your family, roommates, and friends as to privacy and the times they can or cannot interrupt you during your job search.

With the essential tools, self-discipline, an optimistic outlook, patience, and persistence, you will be on your way to your ideal next job!

Terry Wynne
Certified Career Coach

P.S. Get one of the most information-rich career newsletters on the web delivered straight to your email inbox! Check out our Free Newsletter to help you along your career journey today!

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ResumesCareer coaching clients often ask me, what do I think of resumes and cover letters, are they still necessary or are they becoming obsolete? And what about online resumes or webpages to showcase your skills?

Resumes and cover letters are still a must. I think over time they will be delivered or provided in a different format. (Think LinkedIn or online resumes). But they’re not going anywhere. They are still a must. If the company says do not provide one or the other, follow their instructions. Both are still very important though.

Including a cover letter is important because 1) it shows your writing skills and how well you communicate and 2) it demonstrates you care enough about the position to write one and you are able to speak about your skills related to the position confidently. So even if they don’t ask for a cover letter, provide one. As an attachment – not in the body of the email. Err on the side of more formal and professional unless your field calls for something else more creative or different (marketing or advertising for ex).

Online resumes are becoming more popular. I think it’s nice to have one. It’s not a must but it depends on your industry. If you’re in technology, go for it. If you’re in a more traditional field you can get away without one, but consider it as a way to stand out from the crowd. Here’s a website I like for online resume examples: http://www.opresume.com/examples

You’ve read about people who created YouTube videos for job applications as well. These days it can seem like anything goes but that is not entirely the case. Consider these two things when you are deciding what to create for yourself:

1) What’s appropriate for your industry but will still help you stand out.

2) Ensure whatever you do is professional, tasteful and well done.

Creating a video or online resume just for the heck of it, and only doing a halfway decent job, doesn’t cut it. It’s better to skip it altogether.

Hallie Crawford
Job Coach

P.S. Are you in the ideal career for you? Find out if you’re in the right career with our Ideal Career Quiz.

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About Create Your Career Path

Our team of career coaches help people of all ages nurture their career, identify their ideal career path, and navigate their career transition. We offer group and individual coaching as well as self-directed learning products. Schedule a free phone consultation with Create Your Career Path today.