Hey, Buddy! Wanna Buy a Resume?

Resumes are not commodities any more than job candidates can be compared based on salary.

Resumes are not commodities any more than job candidates can be compared based on salary.

Or: Why I Don’t Lower My Prices or Allow My Clients to Lower Their Standards

I received an email today from a potential client asking if I could lower my prices. Her reasoning was that the investment to work with me was nearly twice as much as other writers she had contacted for a resume, cover letter, and LinkedIn profile, so I should lower my rates.

Her note makes me think of my respected colleague and good friend Robyn Feldberg who often repeats the industry adage: “A good resume is expensive, but a cheap one is even more costly.”

That said, I can relate to where my potential client is coming from. I sold my first resume for $100 and felt like I’d won the lottery. I got to help a nice man in the grocery industry get a promotion, and I was even getting paid to do it!

Eight years into my business, I have learned a lot about my craft and about the value any person brings to a situation in which they trade their time, expertise, and unique perspective for money. To be clear, there are instances when I do service for someone who needs and values my skills but is unable to pay my full rate. That is a topic for a different day. This post simply addresses the concept that one can shop for a resume the way one would shop for a gallon of high-octane gasoline or a bar of 24-karat gold.

Here is what I wrote to the potential client:

“Thank you for your response! Resume writing is not a commodity any more than a shirt or a car. You’ll get a different product shopping at Walmart, Kohl’s, and Neiman Marcus.

While I have several years of experience; a background in sales, marketing, and creative writing that paved the way for me to offer unique value to my clients; and record of winning awards (I was the most nominated of anyone in the industry last year), the result is what matters. If you review the samples I sent you and keep in mind that 80%+ of my business comes from repeat and referred clients, I believe you’ll understand the quality I bring to the table.

I am not able to contribute less and am therefore not able to charge less. The plus side for my clients is that they receive an exceptional tool in the deliverables of the resume and other documents while benefiting from the deeper work we do together: articulating why they are not a commodity to be compared with other candidates on the basis of price/salary/commission structure.

I do understand that this is a major investment, and I am honored by the clients who choose to make that investment and take the journey with me. I approach the work as a sacred trust. The arrangement is not for everyone, and that’s okay since I take no more than 3-4 clients a month.

If this feels right to you, I would be greatly honored to tell your story. If it doesn’t, then it’s probably not the right decision to work with me. Either way, I am so glad to know you, and I hope we will keep in touch.”

You can find resume writers who work for $50 and those whose packages go into five figures. When you’re choosing a writer, or deciding to write your own resume, consider the results you hope to achieve and how much those results are worth to you.

January 28, 2014 at 5:16 am Leave a comment

Rising Star: Tiffany Brooks of HGTV Shares Her Journey!

I’ve got my head down finishing my upcoming book on personal branding, This Little Brand of Mine. While I’m working, you can enjoy this big juicy piece of inspiration candy:

I recently sat down with one of my favorite successful careerists to find out how she went from part-time business owner to TV star in a few short, passionate years. 

Tiffany Brooks of You and Your Decor has no formal design training. She started her interior styling business in 2008 as a result of a lost bet. When I met Tiffany three years ago, she was working as an administrator at my children’s school. While working her day job, raising her child, and supporting other family members through hard times, she built her business.

Today, Tiffany has a growing design empire. She won HGTV Star in 2013 and has gone on to host other shows and write featured columns for HGTV Magazine.

If you’ve been waiting to make that big move your heart is urging you towards, or you’re in the middle of a heart-driven slog, this is just the thing to keep you rolling along with a smile on your face!

KEY TAKEAWAYS:

Be real!—Tiffany’s willingness to openly share her “red hot mess” (5:35) of a house and her personal struggles (6:47) won the HGTV decision makers over.

Research opportunities.—Don’t go blindly into situations if you don’t have to. If you’ve got a lead on a great opportunity, learn all you can about the key players. (6:27)

Self-doubt is normal!—Every client I’ve worked with, from office managers to CEOs, has experienced doubt in themselves and/or their chances of success. Tiffany is no exception. (7:35)

Turn your competitors into friends.—Tiffany set a precedent on HGTV Star by helping her competitors. By establishing a tone of camaraderie, she built lifelong friendships and contributed to the most amicable season in HGTV Star history. (8:20)

So what is Tiffany’s brand?—Without doing any branding studies or market research, Tiffany has developed a strong personal brand. Faith-filled, supportive, and relatable, Tiffany is “that girl,” the one people want in their living rooms. (10:55)

What’s next?—(12:30) Smart Home, Urban Oasis, and HGTV Magazine contributor! Also, her firm is offering real-world and virtual design services for individuals and small businesses via You and Your Decor.

There’s no such thing as an “overnight success.”—Tiffany was a manager at a high-end rental property. Her boss gave her the assignment to design the model home as a kind of “rehab” from the stress of the sales aspect of her job. Entering a contest on a bet, she won the “Best Model” title against big Chicago firms. After jotting down a business plan on loose leaf paper, she was off and running. Then, it was four years of active blogging and business development before capturing the HGTV opportunity. Secret about Tiffany: She’s a pessimist! (15:00)

She thought of giving up almost every day!—If you’re working towards your dreams and thinking of giving up, take heart and keep an eye out for divine messages! Tiffany often got discouraged, but kept going because each time she was really tested, she’d get a sign that told her to continue. (20:10)

Ask for what you need.—God (or the Universe or the universal field or…) can’t fulfill your requests if you don’t ask. Tiffany says God will send you down the right “hallway.” If a door closes in your face, it means you’re supposed to be in the next hallway over. (23:30)

Keep learning!—Tiffany has a library of books on design and business, and she reads them! (25:10)

Follow your heart(burn)!—Self explanatory. But you may enjoy Tiffany’s blog post of the same name. Tomorrow is not promised. Don’t die with your music still inside! (25:30)

January 20, 2014 at 6:53 pm Leave a comment

LinkedIn: The Most Attractive Candidates are on the Down Low

TETRRF-00013265-001Sometimes, being on the down-low can put you in the spotlight. If you’re currently employed it’s critical that you keep your “job seeker” status a secret from the worldwide web—and not just for the reason you think. A toe-in-the-sand approach can serve you well if you’re hoping to be found by recruiters and hiring managers on LinkedIn.

 

Use your LinkedIn profile to promote your current company and yourself as its ambassador.

Don’t make your LinkedIn summary a cheesy description of yourself as a “goal-oriented, self-motivated, bla bla bla something.” I’m already asleep. Aside from putting people to sleep, a cookie-cutter description like this outs you to your employer and interested recruiters as an “active” job candidate.

“But,” some of you say, “My boss knows I’m looking.” To that, I say, it doesn’t matter. If you have a job, count your lucky stars that you can present yourself as a “passive” candidate, one who is (or appears to be) thriving and contributing in their current environment. Though there is debate about this in the recruiting community, recruiters focusing on passive job seekers usually win that debate.

So, whether or not you have a job, don’t put things in your headline like “Looking for next opportunity.” Don’t use the silly job seeker icon offered to premium LinkedIn members. And, for the sake of all that is holy, if you have a job:

Use your LinkedIn summary to cement the image of you as making unique, valuable contributions to your current company, and invite investors, clients, and others in your company’s target market to connect so that you can help them realize the benefits of working with such a fine institution.

 

Hey, this is also just good practice for being excellent in your current role. LinkedIn is a great way to get new clients, partners, and ideas.

 

If you don’t have a job, don’t despair. By putting the real you out there in the world and using proper job search techniques (aka not relying on job boards) you will find an opening. You should use every asset to your advantage, and having a job is one asset some job seekers have, just as others have rigorous training, unique work or life experience, or a rockin’ network of supporters.

Below is an example of how you can present yourself as an ambassador of your current employer in your LinkedIn summary. Do this now. You never know what could happen tomorrow that will cause your boss or HR to be suspicious of even the most innocent LinkedIn updates.

SAMPLE LINKEDIN SUMMARY AS EMPLOYER ADOVCATE:

I take great pride in providing research and healthcare facilities with the technology they need to stay on the cutting edge. But you can only be on the cutting edge of research and care if you are meeting your business goals.

As an executive product sales specialist for Acme Healthcare, I grow my business by helping my clients grow theirs. I’m committed to understanding their business as well as they do and to knowing my competitor’s equipment as well as my own so I can give advice that is honest and effective. My clients know that I help their facilities reach both business and quality-of-care goals. I’ve achieved 50% market share against Philips, Siemens, and GE by helping them build their brand, generate referrals, and add high-margin revenue.

Within Acme, I’m most excited about nurturing the culture and helping up-and-coming sales specialists adopt effective strategies for competitive intelligence, visibility, and creative thinking that enable them to meet or exceed plan, even in a tumultuous market. To this end, I’ve headed a grassroots campaign to engage remote employees and taken the initiative to enhance the onboarding, training, and mentoring of new sales hires.

I’ve won personal and territory awards for top sales performance every year of my tenure, including several “Sigma Awards” for top 1% performance. But I’m most proud of the “Hero’s Award” conferred by the president and CEO of Acme Healthcare for my contribution of infrastructure and strategies that brought employees nationwide fully into the Acme fold.

My love of leadership was born early in my career as a diagnostic imaging manager, overseeing teams as large as 22. Working in hospitals and research facilities has also given me the clinical understanding to help my clients realize their full potential.

If you run a research or healthcare facility and need new strategies for strengthening your brand, growing referrals, and adding profitable modalities, let’s talk!

(312) 555-5555

December 3, 2013 at 10:58 am Leave a comment

Why I’m Now Kimberly Robb Baker, or, You Can Take the Girl Out of the Curry…

The Hubs and I are A-OK!

The Hubs and I are A-OK!

I’m going back to my maiden name, Kimberly Robb Baker, for professional purposes. I am legally remaining Kim(berly) Mohiuddin and will keep most personal arenas (i.e. my personal Facebook profile) the same. Those of you who know me both personally and professionally will just have to understand that Kim Mohiuddin and Kimberly Robb Baker are both me.

Though one might not expect it of people who had spent only 16 days together before getting engaged, my marriage of 9 years to my best friend of 11 years is going strong (some people have asked). I’m lucky to have a husband who supports me as I find my way through these questions of personal identity.

If you just needed the basics of why the name I’m using on my website, email, etc. has changed, read no further.

For those curious about my musings on the topic, you’re welcome to dig in below.

From the bottom of my heart, I thank all of the clients, colleagues, and friends who have made me and my business a success under any name. Let’s keep movin’ on up!

Follow your bliss,

Kim

For the record, Mohiuddin is pronounced, “Mo-hee-you-Deen,” with a hard “D” if you care to be perfectly authentic.

When my husband asked me to marry him, I said, “Yes! And could you tell me how to pronounce your name one more time?” (There was a more formal engagement process initiated by my wonderful in-laws, per Indian cultural customs. Good thing I knew how to pronounce their name!)

I’ve told this story to put people at ease when they ask me how to say my married name. They often ask with a bit of embarrassment, as if they are being culturally insensitive by not putting it together themselves.

I loved the name Mohiuddin long before I could say it properly. It means, “propagator of faith.” In truth, it has taken me years to say it with anything like the ease of a native speaker. Even our children add a distinctly American accent to it, so the name is evolving as it enters its first generation in the US. But the name, which has Arabic origins, is accustomed to travel.

The thought of changing my name came up because I’m writing a book and booking speaking engagements. More people need to be able to say it and remember it. As I go more public with my mission to help people succeed in their careers and lives by being more authentically themselves, my advisors have told me that I could have more privacy if I used a different name for my professional endeavors.

My husband, Imran, is “Ron” to his work colleagues and to most Americans he meets. He calls it his Starbucks name. It’s just easier.

Kimberly Robb Baker, up at bat!

Kimberly Robb Baker, up at bat!

But this change for me is more than just a Starbucks name. My maiden name was given to me when I came into the world. It’s the one that described me for the first 29 years of my life. It trailed the shy, thoughtful girl that was me as she went to school, read mountains of books, danced ballet for seven years, and rode horses for many more. Laurie Beauchamp, my mentor in horses and life since the age of 11, reminded me recently of the time a horse threw me off five times in a row, and I just kept getting back on until he stopped. I had forgotten that, and it made me wonder what other aspects of myself had receded into the background.

It was Kimberly Robb Baker who almost bailed out of India when the mosquitoes and poverty and seeming lack of order challenged her comfort levels. She was the one who stayed on past the discomfort, allowing the beauty, dignity, and diversity of the land to reveal itself.

Nowadays, it would be a big production to go backpacking in India or anywhere else. Simple shopping trips require planning with young children, a husband, and a business to consider.

“Kim Mohiuddin” has a different life, and even a different scent. My hair usually smells of curry, a fragrance I’ve always been attracted to. When I entered an Indian household and smelled what I now know to be a mixture of many spices—notably cumin, cinnamon, garlic, and curry leaf—my mouth would water. Even now that I eat mostly raw food, I add cumin to my date shakes or pair bananas with fresh ginger.

The lady who teaches our kids to rock climb always smells my hair on purpose when we hug hello or goodbye. “I love it!” she exclaims. My hairdresser has suggested a hair deodorizer. “I don’t know if you need it or not, but I wanted you to know that we sell it,” she [not so] tactfully states.

As much as I love the smell, it’s not one I would have chosen as “mine,” but the curry has chosen me. It has unpacked its bags and put its toothbrush in the medicine cabinet. Unless I keep all of my belongings in a closet far away from the kitchen and wash and dry my hair (a many-hours process for this curly girl), every time I leave the house it will be with me. I’m simply not willing to go to great lengths to separate myself from it.

The fact that my home is an amalgam of two cultures is a huge piece of who I am, and those with sensitive noses are cued into it right away. But it’s not all that I am. I’m a vegan, yogi, resume writer, mystic, singer, actress, public speaker, teller of bawdy jokes, and more. When we really start to describe ourselves, it all gets beautifully complicated.

I sometimes lose touch with that quietly voracious young Kimberly who still wants to be in the picture. I don’t know exactly why it feels good to use my maiden name for my professional life, but it has something to do with her.

I shared my name-change plans with a married colleague recently. She confessed that she loves her maiden name and wishes she could use it again. “It’s a lot of trouble to change your name,” she lamented, “But I’ll be watching eagerly to see how it goes for you.”

Is there a change, name or otherwise, you’ve been thinking about making? One that will bring you more authentically into the world? I’d welcome your insights in the comments below.

My mentor, Laurie Beauchamp, getting her horse ready for me to ride.

My mentor, Laurie Beauchamp, getting her horse ready for me to ride.

November 19, 2013 at 3:35 pm 24 comments

What Job Seekers Can Learn From the Viral Mouse Video

So, this video of a determined mouse has gone viral with nearly 1.6 million views as of this writing. There is a hidden message here for job seekers, and it’s not about tenacity.

After seeing this video show up many times on various social feeds, I decided to gamble a little over a minute of my life watching it. It was worth it for the aha moment I got. The “aha” was not that you can do anything if you are determined enough. The “aha” was:

It is not enough to be determined.

This video shows a mouse struggling to get a cracker to the upper level of a counter top or table. He works and works and works, demonstrating much verve and tenacity. But this energy and drive isn’t working. At about 0:55, he goes up without the cracker and seems to have given up.

I believe what really happened is that he took a moment to analyze the situation and break it into parts.
He wanted to get himself and the cracker to the upper level. But just throwing himself at the problem wasn’t working. After he noticed how he got to the upper level alone (maybe he needed that left front paw free to swing himself, say) he could attack the problem of how to hold the cracker to ensure success. After going to the upper level, the mouse came back down and was successful on his very next attempt.
If I may anthropomorphize for a moment, I see this mouse as having achieved something which will have long-lasting benefits. If he is ever in a similar situation, it will be resolved much more quickly. He is also in a unique position to help other hungry mice (I’m not sure how mentoring or consulting work in the mouse world, but you get my point).
As a job seeker, it’s not enough to try hard. You have to be smart too. Stop madly grabbing at the cracker for a minute and think about what you need in order to accomplish the task at hand.
How could you be more effective?
Who could you learn from who has been there/done that so you don’t have to spend 55 mouse seconds (about 7 months in human time, I’m sure) flailing around in vain?

November 9, 2013 at 6:19 am 6 comments

“Cold Mail”: An Innovative Way to Access the Hidden Job Market

or… What Faulkner and Twain Knew About Career Communications

Faster than a job board troll, more powerful than networking, and much less intimidating than picking up the phone and calling someone you don’t know… I bring you: COLD MAIL!

Why do you “cold mail?”

Any salesperson worth their salt knows that to really make things happen, they need to go beyond their network and reach out to new contacts. It’s called cold calling.

As you “sell yourself” (I’m not fond of that term, but more on that another time) on the job market, your field of possibilities expands almost infinitely if you go beyond your network and make these “cold” contacts. Detective work and phone calls are highly effective if that is your strong suit. You can even hire an “executive talent agent” to make these calls for you.

But if you’re not comfortable with the idea of cold calling or you’re hesitant to invest 5 figures to have someone do it for you, cold mailing is an excellent option.

What do you “cold mail?”

Send a brief letter, 150 words or less, called a value proposition letter. These letters were perfected brought to prominence by the late Mark Hovind. Mary Elizabeth Bradford, who was mentored by Mark, introduced me to them, and I’ve found them highly effective.

It’s important to know what NOT to send. Do not send a resume. Firstly, the psychological impact of a resume either, “I’ll read that later” or “Not another one! Where’s the recycling bin?” It is lengthy, kind of like discussing your ex or childhood traumas on a first date. Additionally, many companies have a universal policy that all resumes must go through HR. Well, so much for dealing directly with the decision-maker, which was the whole point.

Do not send a lengthy letter! It may seem easier to send a shorter letter, but this is not the case. As you’ll see from the example at the end of this article, it’s a challenge to crystallize the most important points in 150 words or less. But the calculated brevity does two things. Firstly, at less than half a page, it looks completely unintimidating to read. The recipient will often go ahead and consume its contents right away. Secondly, the tone will naturally be to-the-point which is how executives tend to communicate. You’ll be speaking in the reader’s language and as their peer.

By the way, who is the reader?

Who do you “cold mail?”

Cold mail hiring managers or others in a position to influence hiring, such as board members or executives at venture capital (VC) or private equity (PE) firms. If you are a high level executive or your market is smaller companies, you’ll want to reach out to C-level folks. If you are at a mid-manager or director level looking at a larger organization, include VPs in your search.

You can find these people with the help of your reference librarian (most libraries have a business database available to patrons), by researching online at websites such as ZoomInfo, or by hiring someone to generate a list for you (I like Career Solvers and Profile Research).

How do you “cold mail?”

Lots of labels and lickin’! You may have forgotten what it’s like to send out actual items of mail via the USPS, but it’s time to remember. Alternately, you can hire a service to take care of fulfillment for you. Warning: fulfillment services are sometimes used to sending a resume and cover letter. Don’t do this! Insist that you only want to send the value proposition letter.

Keep in mind, this is a numbers game. While I’ve seen response rates up to 30% for someone with in-demand skills, if you count on a 3% response rate, you should be fairly safe. This means if you send out 100 letters and get 3 calls, you’re doing something right. 800 to 1,000 letters is usually a good amount, but balance that with quality of data. There point in spending time and money approaching random people. When putting together your list, be clear on the size and type of company, industry, and job function you are interested in.

Note: Though not the traditional way to do this, my clients have had great success sending their value proposition letter through LinkedIn messages. Join groups containing the audience you seek (i.e. biotech executives), and reach out to members via the group’s messaging service. If you do this be absolutely certain that your LinkedIn profile is up to snuff. In fact, you’ll want to do that in any case as your letter should include the link to your LinkedIn profile.

The value proposition letter has a very low success rate if sent via email.

What does a “cold mail” look like?

It is bare bones. Neat, but without much extra formatting. The body of the letter should be no more than 150 words. Oh, how I struggled with this word limit in the beginning. A 150-word letter would never win an award for best cover letter! I love all of my clients and want nothing more than to extol their virtues all day long.

But beauty is as beauty does. 150 words gets interviews. 200 words doesn’t.

The format goes:

1. Open with an engaging question about what the reader needs for his/her business.

2. In one short sentence, give a big-picture example of how you’ve achieved #1 for your current employer.

3. Provide 3 brief, bulleted examples either breaking down the details of #2 or expressing your top career accomplishments in light of your opening question.

4. Tell the person how you’d like to help them and what you want in return. Suggest setting a time to speak.

5. Thank them for their time.

6. Include a P.S. It’s kind of like how Colombo would turn back after speaking with a witness and say, “Just one more question.” It’s a way to sneak in a zinger. That zinger can often be the URL for your LinkedIn profile where they can learn more about you. Your P.S. could also be a way to mention something critical like your connection to the industry or your upcoming master’s degree.

Example: Here is a value proposition letter I wrote for a client. It’s edited down to a 148-word body

<<Greeting>>

Do you need a sales and marketing leader who can exceed revenue goals, reinforce culture, and develop products that out-innovate competitors?

As the executive head of sales and marketing at my current company, I’ve grown revenue 93% in the last year. In my career I’ve:

  • Led capture of dozens of 7- and 8-figure deals with Fortune 500 companies and government organizations.
  • Realized drastic YOY revenue increases (high double and triple digits) by rethinking markets and product application.
  • Accelerated growth with due diligence and go/no-go M&A decisions.

I’ve helped multiple companies realize profitable exit strategies. Now, I’m looking to make a long-term impact on culture and products where I have a stake in the outcome. If this is of interest to you, let’s set up a time to speak.

Thank you in advance for your interest. I look forward to learning more about your most pressing challenges.

Sincerely,

John Candidate

P.S. You can learn more about my experience here: [insert LinkedIn profile URL]

 

The letter at the end of this post was my first attempt to write for the same client. At 187 words, it was too long! I felt I’d whittled it down to the essentials, but my word count told me otherwise. You must, as Faulkner quipped, “Murder your darlings.” If you imagine yourself a busy decision maker and look at each of these, you’ll quickly understand why the above is better.

It takes time to write tight! As Mark Twain said, “I didn’t have time to write a short letter, so I wrote a long one instead.” But if you’re serious about job search, you better make the time!

(Disclaimer for the sticklers out there: some people say the above quotes were erroneously attributed to Faulkner and Twain. That may be the case, but whoever really posited these thoughts would have made great resume writers!)

 

<<Greeting>>

Do you need a sales and marketing leader who can exceed revenue goals, reinforce strong corporate values, and develop product portfolios that out-innovate competitors?

As a member of the executive team at my current company, I’ve grown sales 93% in the last year. Additional results that may interest you:

  • Closed dozens of 7- and 8-figure deals with Fortune 500 companies and government organizations—both through personal contributions and team leadership.
  • Realized drastic YOY revenue increases (high double digits and triple digits) by rethinking customer base and product application and creating segmented marketing campaigns and sales strategies.
  • Accelerated growth and supported profitable exits by performing due diligence and making go/no-go merger and acquisition decisions.

I’ve helped multiple companies realize profitable exits through sales. Now, I’m looking for a place where I can make a long-term impact on culture and products and have a stake in the outcome. If this is of interest to you, let’s set up a time to speak.

I thank you in advance for your interest, and I look forward to learning more about your most pressing sales, marketing, and business challenges.

John Candidate

P.S. You can learn more about my experience here: [insert LinkedIn profile URL]

 

 

July 27, 2013 at 8:35 am Leave a comment

Four Must-Have Tools for an Organized Job Search—Plus a Bonus Tool for Social Media Junkies

Do you ever wish there were two of you? I mean, it takes so long to live your life AND look for a job. Here are a few tools that will make your job search more effective and free up some time for important things like networking, suit shopping, and mani/pedis (they should be tax deductible as part of your job search, no?).

Can you live without these tools? Sure. They do take time to set up, time that could be used networking or writing your resume. But it often takes months to land a job, and your labyrinth of contacts, tasks, and emails will only get bigger and less wieldy as your search goes on. Besides, all of these tools will help you maintain the momentum of active career management long after the ink is dry on your ideal job offer. After all, you’ll want to be better prepared for your next transition, won’t you?

ONE

Dedicated email: I love Gmail because of its many forwarding and filtering options. When you delve into the land of job search, you may end up on a bunch of mailing lists. A dedicated email address means it’s easy to ignore all that stuff later once you’re employed. Also, I believe using a service perceived as leading-edge helps your image. Browse Google Labs for fun and time saving Gmail add-ons. One of my favorites is “canned responses.” Technically, Google has disabled its labs, but you can still find it in your email settings under the “labs” tab.

The only one that might trump Gmail for hipness is a Mac address. Personally, I’m still waiting to get one of those. In any case, you’ll need a Google account for some of my other suggestions.

TWO

Dedicated phone number: Again, you have many choices here. Skype has been the bane of my telecom existence for some time. It doesn’t always do what I ask it to in terms of voicemail and call forwarding, and call quality is dicey. I’ve had good luck with my Vonage connection, but call forwarding is awkward. I LOVE my Google Voice account because it will ring any phone I ask it to and even send me a text message transcript of voicemails. I do suggest NOT using the call screening option. If you aren’t available, it rather highlights the possibility that you just didn’t want to speak to the caller.

THREE

CRM: If you’re serious about job search and ongoing career management, it’s time to ditch the spread sheet! JibberJobber is my favorite option for job seekers or people who just want to keep their network alive and growing. There is a free option that works very well, and the upgrades are quite affordable.

FOUR

Scheduling Tool: It should be as easy as possible for qualified companies to schedule an interview with you. TimeTrade eliminates the back-and-forth emails and phone calls and allows interviewers to put themselves on your calendar. It takes a bit of work to set up at the front-end, but the ensuing ease of scheduling and the professional impression it gives are worth it.

BONUS

Social Media Scheduling Tool: Not everyone needs to be active on social media to run an effective job search. But if you do, or if social is just your cup of tea, a scheduler helps you batch your social activity. My personal favorite after trying several is BufferApp. It takes the pain out of scheduling by automatically posting at optimum times to achieve maximize visibility. The plugin for Chrome allows you to easily snag relevant articles from the web, and they’ve even added the ability to schedule at specific times (though why anyone would want to think that hard is beyond me).

Do you have a favorite job search tool? Please share in the comments!

July 26, 2013 at 8:21 am Leave a comment

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