Seven Tips to a Job-Winning Interview
These days, interviews don't come easily. When you get The Call, make the most of your time -- and go for it!
1. Investigate the company's culture, markets, and finances. But resist the temptation to show off what you've researched: "I just read that you're about to embark on a new product line") unless you have a question directly related to your career.
2. Look like you belong. Learn the company's dress code and err on the side of conservatism. When you're seeking a senior position based on industry experience, you'll be expected to know the rules without being told.
3. Take charge of the interview! The most successful interviews feel like friendly conversations. When your interviewer has an agenda (such as the infamous "stress interview") stay relaxed. Think of playing a game.
4. Assume everyone you meet will provide feedback to the decision-maker. Some companies hand out comment forms to receptionists, security guards and potential peers who take you to lunch.
5. Communicate interest and enthusiasm, even if you're not sure you're ready to commit. You'll rarely have all the facts until you're looking at an offer.
6. Bring extra copies of your correspondence from this company as well as your resume, references, writing samples, portfolio and current business cards. Interviewers lose documents and conversations move in unexpected directions.
7. Create a relaxed, positive attitude by devising a realistic game plan. When your career isn't riding on a single interview, you'll have fun and make a confident, relaxed impression.
8. Write a thank you letter within forty-eight hours. Create a low-key sales letter, emphasizing how your qualifications match the company's needs. Present yourself as a resource, not a supplicant.
9. After you write the letter, forget about the interview. Email or phone only if you've received a competing offer with a deadline.
Occasionally you may make points with follow-up mailings. A sports team public relations applicant sent puzzles, games and press releases -- and she got the job. Use your intuition.
10. Keep notes of what you learned from the process. What worked? What would you do differently?
As soon as you begin your new job, develop a career plan and a safety net before you need one.
Cathy Goodwin, Ph.D., wrote Making the Big Move (New
Harbinger 1999). She works with professionals who have seen
the light and are ready to ditch their current career and
start a second one.
Has ADHD Put Your Career in Danger? 3 Steps to Get You Back on Track
"Roger, you must get those contracts completed for this month's sales and don't forget, we have a meeting tomorrow at 9:00. Don't be late again!"
Recovering From a Career Crisis
If you have ever experienced any of the following, you have had a career crisis:
F-E-A-R in the Job Search!
Fear in starting a job search is a four letter word! Like any other four letter word, the word itself can create more fear, and some- times self-loathing!
What Do Employees Wish for Most (And How To Get It)
What do many employees wish for at work? A bonus or raise. At least that's so according to results from a recent survey developed by OfficeTeam, a global staffing service that specializes in placing administrative professionals. The telephone survey, conducted by an independent research firm in February, polled 571 men and women in the United States over the age of 18. All respondents were employed full-time in professional positions. Survey results revealed that almost half (48%) of the respondents put "a bonus or raise" at the top of their "wish list" at work.
Do You Work to Live or Live to Work?
Let's be realistic here - hands up all of you who bounce out of bed every single morning, raring to get to work and enjoying yourself every minute of the day?
Resume Software ? The Hidden Pitfalls
Disadvantages of Resume Software
Turning Their Loss Into Your Job Gain
It isn't the end of the world, even if it seems like it. Losing your job can be a heart-breaking experience. After all, your security in life and your abilities is now in question. You can feel disillusioned and there is the ever-nagging question of: What do I do now?
Hot Business Trends for 2004? And Beyond: Maybe One Will Turn Into a Creative Business Idea for You
I always look forward to the December issue of Entrepreneur magazine. That's the issue that features the publisher's annual pick of hot businesses, markets, and trends for smart entrepreneurs ? or those who aspire to be. Some of the high tech businesses cited like mobile gaming or online learning tend to require six and seven figure start up costs. This can seem daunting (although not impossible) for the person just venturing into self-employment. So I've decided to focus on the markets, trends, and businesses that speak to someone operating on a somewhat more limited budget. Let's start with hot markets: HOT MARKET: Middle-Aged Women Since I've recently entered my last year in my 40s, I thought it only appropriate to start with this group (although like most boomers, I still have a hard time thinking of myself as anything close to "middle aged"). Not surprisingly, products and services for women in their 40s and 50s that center around anti-aging and menopause are hot. The magazine cites such promising areas as counseling, exercise spas, yoga, smoking cessation programs? any product or service that helps women stay healthy and feel good about themselves ? both inside and out. The reference to smoking cessation got me thinking? Residential treatment facilities for other forms of substance abuse are common- place, but I've personally never seen a retreat, spa, or other residential-type place specifically aimed at people who need help quitting smoking, and who would benefit from doing so outside their home environment. I'm picturing morning walks, meditation, massage, support groups, good food, and of course, lots and lots of punching bags! HOT MARKET: Toddlers/Tweens/Teens According to market research firm Packaged Facts, last year 5 to 14 year olds spent $10 billion on food and beverages. Other favorite product areas for kids are sports, fashion, music, and technology. And apparently home décor and remodeling isn't just for adults anymore (who knew?). Stores like IKEA and Pottery Barn are starting to selling home furnishing products aimed at teens. With baby boomers having more discretionary income with which to spoil their grandchildren, babies and toddlers have also become hot markets. Online start-up ELittle Luxuries offers designer baby furniture and more than 600 other upscale baby items. (http://www.eLittleLuxuries.com) HOT MARKET: Overweight People After reading how much kids spend on food and beverages, it's no surprise that 15% of children and teens are overweight. But we adults have them beat. A whopping 64% of Americans are considered obese or overweight. Businesses that offer products and services to help people slim down and develop more healthy habits are the most obvious. But entrepreneurs willing to think outside the "solve the problem" box by looking for ways to make overweight people's lives easier verses trying to fix them, will also do well. HOT MARKET: Metrosexuals With the enormous appeal of stylish soccer super star David Beckham and shows like Bravo's Queer Eye for the Straight Guy where gay men help straight men with fashion, grooming, home décor, and social skills, a growing number of heterosexual men are allowing themselves to tap into their fashionable side. One enterprising guy who jumped into the metrosexual market early has seen phenomenal growth. With $20,000 and a dream, Tom Granese launched Regiments, an online store that sells high-end grooming products for men. Less than two years later, Tom opened his first storefront in Dallas with a projected $210,000 in first year in-store sales. HOT MARKET: Hispanics The Hispanic market is certainly nothing new ? in fact it's made Entrepreneur's list for many years now. The magazine cites opportunities in anything from food and entertainment, to financial services and Web services. Now let's look at two of Entrepreneur's picks for hot trends in 2004? HOT TREND: Outdoor Living Spaces Into gardening or design? According to Joanne Kostecky of the American Nursery & Landscape Association, and president of her own garden design company, the concept of outdoor living rooms that is so popular in the south and some urban areas is beginning to reach the rest of the country. The fact that more consumers are investing in courtyards and elaborate gardens means the gardening and outdoor design businesses are bound to grow! HOT TREND: Fast-Casual Food Health and taste conscious consumers on the go are turning to fast- casual restaurants and chains. In my own small town of Northampton, two of the more popular joints are benefiting from the fast-casual boom. One serves upscale burritos (my favorite is the Thai burritos) and the other is a hip soup, salad, and sandwich joint that opened in a greatly remodeled former Taco Bell restaurant. Idea: Back in my old softball days I always wished someone would cater to all those hungry players and fans by starting a high quality food wagon. Other Hot Trends? Boating and water sports, the hunger for low- carb foods (a trend being taken seriously by restaurants, grocery stores, and food manufacturers), oils and sauces, and multiculturalism which includes the gay and lesbian markets. Hot markets and hot trends lead to hot businesses. Here are some of Entrepreneur's picks? HOT BUSINESS: Children's Enrichment Programs With so many parents in the workforce, more kids than ever before are engaged in extracurricular and after school activities. If you like the idea of working with kids, you can opt to open a physical location like a gym, dance or art studio, or camp, take your program into the schools, or provide private lessons. If you think opening your own place is financially out of reach, think again. While $12,000 is no small sum of money, it's a lot less than a lot of people might expect they'd need to shell out to start their own dance studio. But that's how much former dance student turned instructor Archer Alstaettter dug up in cash and credit cards to found Dance Emotion in Irvine, California. That was five years ago. Today Archer's studio has 500 clients and expects 600-plus to be enrolled by spring. You go Archer! HOT BUSINESS: Home Improvement Remodeling, refurbishing, and redecorating are all the rage. There are some 30 cable shows on home improvement alone. And home improvement isn't all about décor. Worth noting are businesses that help home owners maximize the space they have as well as those making homes more accessible to an aging population. (To read about a unique, highly successful, and legitimate home business opportunity that matches home owners with reputable home repair contractors go to http://www.ChangingCourse.com/hrnsuccess.htm) HOT BUSINESS: Yoga & Pilates According to Entrepreneur, companies are bending over backwards to cater to the growing market of people practicing yoga. Clothes, mats, DVDs, music, and classes aimed at seniors, pregnant women and children as young as three are just a few products and services aimed at this growing market. And with a reported 47 million Americans taking Pilates, a work out that builds abdominal muscles, opportunities abound for gym owners and instructors alike. If you like the idea of teaching Pilates, studio owner Maria Leone recommends starting out by keeping overhead low. She suggests renting space for one-on-one sessions from a small gym or chiropractic office. Fees for a typical Pilates session range from $50 to $70 an hour. Meditate on that! HOT BUSINESS: Upscale Pet Services According to the American Pet Product Manufacturers Association, Americans spent an estimated $31 billion on pets in 2003. A few of the luxury services cited include pet hotels complete with heated floors, limousine rides, day cruises, and personal shoppers. And apparently the spa trend has extended to the pet world with exfoliating treatments, aromatherapy, liposuction (I kid you not), and chiropractic services. HOT BUSINESS: Outsourcing Outsourcing is one of those good new-bad news things. If your job is being eliminated because it's cheaper for your company to outsource functions like HR, accounting, and network security, then outsourcing is a bad thing. Outsourcing is particularly hot in IT ? and when it comes to outsourcing jobs overseas, it's also controversial. The good news for freelancers is the federal government plans to open 850,000 jobs to outsourcing, with $85 billion in federal IT contracts to be awarded over the next three years Other Hot Businesses: Spas, organic foods, online matchmaking, senior care, wireless, tech security, and voiceover IP (VoIP). If you believe as I do that it's better to be the boss, than to have one, why not make 2004 the year you start putting your entrepreneurial plans into action? You don't have to quit your job or mortgage your home to get the ball rolling. You might resolve to do some research, start putting together a business plan, take a course on marketing, glass blowing, woodworking, web design, or whatever sparks your fancy, get certified to teach yoga, buy a book on how to launch a successful on-line business, start a Barbara Sher style Success Team? or just order a subscription to Entrepreneur. If you don't already subscribe to Entrepreneur you can do so at http://www.Entrepreneur.com. The site also features a ton of free resources for anyone who already is ? or dreams of ? working for themselves. For other free resources for people who want to start their own businesses visit http://www.ChangingCourse.com/newbiz.htm Okay, but what if you don't see a trend, market, or business here that speaks to you? Then find the one that does! I had a client who is crazy for horses and photography. It took me all of 30 seconds on Google.com to find a group called the Equine Photographers Network. In addition to their conference this February in Florida, the group offers a free public online discussion group with over 700 members who range from top-of-their-field working pros to amateur photographers to magazine editors and writers to horse owners, all interested in improving their equine photography skill and knowledge. Learn all about the Equine Photographers Network at http://www.EquinePhotographers.net. The way to find the "hottest" business idea for you is to get in touch with the passion that burns the brightest in your heart. Then make 2004 the year resolve to you take those first bold steps on behalf of your dream!
Ten Careers For High School Seniors Who Hate School
Let's face it?not everybody likes going to school and high school can be a terrible experience for many students. Whether you're the hands on type who preferred Shop class to English class, or an athlete who liked working as a team more than studying alone, or even someone who liked schoolwork more than schoolmates; the idea of four more years of school is unbearable. If you identify with any of these types, but still want to secure a good future, there are some great options out there for you.
How To Write A Résumé
Figure out what you want to do.
The Organized Job Search
Many people, under financial or other pressures to find work quickly, feel they can't afford to take the time to get organized. On the other hand, conducting your job search in an organized manner will reduce the amount of time you spend looking for information, following inappropriate leads, or waiting for your dream job to fall into your lap. It generally takes at least a month to find an entry-level job, and as much as nine months for one requiring a high level of skill and experience. Getting organized before you begin your job search can ultimately save you a lot of time and frustration.
Career Success Through Self-Marketing
Marketing shouldn't be limited to advertising companies. Finding a job or enhancing your current position requires good self-marketing skills. What is self-marketing? Basically, self-marketing is communicating your benefits to potential or current employers. Think of yourself as a "product" and explain to employers what differentiates you from other "products."
Making Sure You Get a Good Reference
You've had 3 interviews with a potential employer and they've asked you for references from your prior job. The problem is that you didn't leave on the best of terms and now you're a bit worried about the kind of reference they'll give. Follow these simple rules and you will be able to handle this without any problem.
Free Resume Examples: Untold Wealth In 10 Minutes!
Doesn't every job search start with Google?
Top 5 Tips for College Grads Entering the Working World
1) Build a Relationship With Your Boss:
Outsmart Other Job Seekers by Showing These 5 Key Strengths
Getting an appointment for an interview these days is an accomplishment. It indicates that you have a good resume, and/or that networking has paid off. Bravo. Now for the all-important in-person phase of the process.
Ready to Move -- Anywhere!
"I have lived in this city all my life. My family is here. I am pretty satisfied, but lately I'm getting restless. I want to move somewhere - anywhere. I was thinking of Seattle...:"
Lost Your Job? Ten Ways to Bounce Back!
Whether you've been right-sized, downsized, underutilized, or just plain fired, looking for work is a life-changing experience that rocks your world. Regain your equilibrium with these ten strategies and get back to being your best.
Build Your Career Decision By Decision
Do you dislike making decisions and avoid the challenge whenever you can?
Relocation Myths and Stereotypes
You've probably been taught not to stereotype people based on race, religion or sex. But when you make a career or other life choice, do you still make decisions based on stereotypes?
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