9 Things To Do To Catapult Your Career In 2017

9 Things To Do In 2017 To Catapult Your Career

New Year, New Career. I’ll keep it simple today. Here are the 9 things you must do in 2017 to get the job you want.

 

Refresh Your Resume: The job search market is only getting more competitive. It doesn’t matter how qualified you are for the job – if the employer has an issue with your resume, you will never get the chance to prove how brilliant you are. Get a friend to critically review your resume and if they think it needs work – pay to have it professionally written.

 

Use Cold Calling: The job market is full of lazy job-seekers at the moment. Everybody is content to use large search engines such as seek.com but it’s creating massive competition and screwing your chances of securing your position. Employers can be lazy as well which is why if you have mailed them your resume before they even know they have a job and you meet their requirements, they won’t bother advertising the position. I’ve lost count of the amount of times this happens.

 

Update Your Professional Development: I always recommend taking a minimum of (1) new course or workshop every year in an area related to your field. It keeps your knowledge fresh but it also shows on paper your commitment to your own learning and helps keep the resume look current and up to date.

 

Start A Career File: everyone should have a career file stored on their computer or even written in a notepad that they keep in their filing cabinet. On it you should be writing down every new software system you use, course you take, scores from customer feedback forms, copies of customer feedback, performance reports, awards, achievements, performance indicator scores etc. When it’s time to write your next resume, this information is the gold dust that sells your resume to the employer. It’s amazing how much you can forget in such a short period of time.

 

Career Coaching: It’s hard to see your own blind-spots so having someone that can point them out, give professional advice and help you to map out a step by step process to get to where you really want to be can be a god-send. Can’t spring for professional coaching? Try using one of the free career tests online. My favourite at the moment is Gopher. It will help you work out what your strengths are and compile a report of the occupations best suited to you.

 

Negotiate for A Higher Salary: This is something you want to do every year, and yet another reason to keep the career file up to date. This way you have evidence to demonstrate your worth to the employer. The best site to get assistance with the negotiation process is ‘I Will Teach You To Be Rich’ ( http://www.iwillteachyoutoberich.com/). Ramit has some great tips and worksheets to get you through the negotiation process.

 

Use EFT to Release Old Fears: I’m a recent convert to the ‘Emotional Freedom Technique’. If you are not familiar with it, it uses a simple tapping process to release fears and to assist you basically move forward faster with your life. Check out Brad Yates on YouTube. I do his productivity videos every morning before I start work, but he has videos on every subject you could ever need.

 

Read Up: I recommend a goal of (5) career related books per year. For example, you might read a book on interview tips, one on identifying your ideal career and another on negotiation in the work-place. Bonus points if you take notes and take steps to implement what you have learnt.

 

Interview Coaching: If you find that the interview process is where your job search goes south, it’s an excellent time to get some tips from a professional. An interview coach can help you identify your key selling points and how to incorporate these into the conversation.

 

Thanks for reading. Now go catapult your career in 2017:)

Get The Job You Love Boot-Camp Challenge – A Stock Take Of Your Skills

 

Job Search Help

Job Search Help

Challenge 1 – A Stock-Take Of Your Current Skills

Hello campers and welcome to your first challenge!  Our very first challenge is a super simple one. In it we look back at our past jobs (yep, even the time you flipped burgers at McDonalds) to work out your transferrable skills. Transferrable skills are the ones you can take with you to the next job even if it’s in a totally different industry.  Let’s use McDonalds as an example:

Ok, so let’s say your first job out of school was at McDonalds. You served customers, processed payments, made burgers and that was about all. Now let’s say you are looking at a job as a Bank Teller next. Some of the skills you learnt at McDonalds that transfer across might include: cash handling, customer service, conflict resolution etc.

Ok, now you know what you are looking for create a spreadsheet on excel or draw two columns on a piece of paper and list every job you have ever held in the first column. In the second column, write down all the skills you learnt doing that job that would transfer across to the next one.

To Recap:

Your challenge is to identify your key skills based on previous employment history

Step One: Create two columns on a spreadsheet or piece of paper

Step Two: List every job you have ever done

Step Three: List the skills you learnt at each job

Step Four: You should probably create a sub folder on your computer or get a vanilla folder if you are doing the activities manually to keep all your challenges in – because you are going to need this information for some of our resume modules later on.

Remember we offer a resume service that runs Australia wide – we service areas including but not limited to Agnes Banks, Albury, Sydney, Ballina, Batemans Bay, Boggabilla, Wagga Wagga, Brinswick Heads, Cobar, Deniliquin, Evans Head, Forster, Gladstone, Glen Innes, Kyogle, Hobart, Melbourne, Brisbane, Darwin, Perth and many more.

For our current price list visit: http://nicolejessicacoggan.com/resumeservice

80 Things You Can Do Right Now To Find The Job Of Your Dreams

Find A Job

Find A Job

 

osd_social_media_sharing

80 Things You Can Do Today To Find the Job of Your Dreams

 

When people want to find their dream job they jump online, search for the job they want and submit their resume for the position along with everyone else who is doing exactly the same thing. This can work, but here are 84 things you should also use when you start to look for the job of your dreams.

Please note some of these ideas are extreme job search ideas so proceed with caution and keep an open mind. Want good job search karma coming your way? Pay it forward by sharing this article using the social media icons.

 

Improve the content on your resume – As a resume writer I see a lot of customers focus on design instead of content. You need to start adding achievements to your resume because this is what sells your resume to the employer. You can download a free resume questionnaire that will help you pinpoint your achievements here.

 

Upgrade to a designer resume – Once you have the content perfect, it’s time to work on the design. If you aren’t comfortable doing this yourself you can purchase a ‘designer resume’. I particularly love the ones LOFT offers. They are AMAZING and you can get one for less than $100. You can see some of their designs here.

 

 

Improve you cover letter – Most cover letters are boring as bat shit to read. While it’s true only about 50% of employers actually bother to read them, you stand a better chance of getting noticed if you take the extra time to send a job specific one, rather than a generic puff piece.

 

Write a job search schedule and stick to it – I talk to a lot of people trying to find a new job. The thing is 80% of job seekers don’t treat finding a job as a job. If you are unemployed and looking for work, you need to be applying for positions from 9-5, Monday to Friday. Even if you are already employed you need to set a schedule of say one hour per day from 5-6pm to focus on your job search efforts.

 

 

Send out cold calling letters – This is so effective, yet very few people do it. Your competition on job seeker websites is fierce with over 150+ applicants for one position. One way around it is to set a goal of say 20 organisations a week and send them a letter and your resume. Your letter should make it clear that you really want to work there should a position become available. (Do not use email, I have split tested this and it is only really effective if you use traditional snail mail)

 

Make some cold calling phone calls – Just like writing a letter, this is when you give prospective employers a call and ask if they have any potential positions available. I find letter writing is more effective but this approach can still work provided that you can handle being told ‘no’ multiple times in an hour.

 

 

Go see the people you want to work with in person – This is my favourite approach for anyone looking for work in retail or hospitality. It is hands down the most effective job search method out there for kitchen, waiting and bar positions. Simply print off multiple copies of your resume and hit the pavement handing them out.

 

Get a LinkedIn Profile – LinkedIn is becoming more popular by the day. The biggest mistake I see is people don’t use a profile picture or don’t put any effort into their profile. Make sure you treat your profile like a resume and include all your achievements.  If you are going to do LinkedIn make sure you do it properly or it’s a complete waste of time.

 

 

Get endorsements on LinkedIn – LinkedIn give you the opportunity to endorse people for skills you know they have. It also gives users the opportunity to endorse you. If you haven’t already start endorsing your contacts for their skills so they return the favor – make sure you only endorse them for skills you know they have.

 

Post that you need a new job to Facebook – You can always post a status update letting your contacts know the sort of work you are looking for and asking if they know anyone. Of course, only do this if you don’t mind your current employer finding out about it. If you don’t want to post a status, try sending everyone a personal message instead.

 

 

Tweet that you need a new job – You can use a similar approach with Twitter (again, only if you don’t mind your current employer finding out about it). Tweet the sort of position you are looking or and ask anyone that might have a contact to tweet you back.

 

Send an email to all your contacts letting them know you want a new job – Building on social media, you can also send a person email to all your contacts asking them to forward your email to anyone that may be interested. Again be careful with this one if you don’t want your employer finding out.

 

 

Personally call your contacts and let them know you want a new job – Another approach is to personally call your contacts, let them know what you offer and what you want and ask if they have any contacts that may help.

 

Apply for jobs in the paper – Of course, there is also the traditional job search way of finding a job out of the paper. Most of you will already be doing this but if you haven’t started – now is a good time to get started.

 

 

Want to get a new job? Join my free program ‘Get The Job You Love’. This course has been especially designed to teach you how to find a job you love, today. Join now

 

Apply for jobs on websites – If you haven’t already, make sure you check out job search websites such as Seek. The competition can be fierce but if you have a resume and cover letter ready to go, you can apply with the click of a button.

 

 

Sign up for a recruitment company – Get in touch with your local recruiters and introduce yourself. They usually make you fill out some forms and give you a quick interview so they have you on file if a suitable job turns up.

 

Get some interview coaching – There is always room for improvement and if you find yourself getting interviews but not getting the job, it’s a sign you might need some help. An interview coach can help and a quick Google search of your area will point you in the right direction.

 

 

Get professional written selection criteria– Most government positions require you to address some kind of criteria as part of your application. If you don’t have experience in this area and you find your application is getting overlooked it may be time to get some professional assistance.

 

Update your professional development – You don’t need accredited training to be able to list it under your professional development section on your resume. There some really great online training options available to help you update your skills in any area. Take some free courses through Udemy or Allison and add this to your professional development resume section.

 

 

Take a career test – Achievements sell resumes and one of the best things you can use to demonstrate your achievements is some kind of evidence to back up your claims. Do some career testing in your area of expertise and use the results to sell your resume.  Career tests also have the added bonus of helping you prepare for positions that will want to test you before you start. Try one here.

 

Do a course in job search techniques – Need to brush up your job search skills? It may be time to take a course to make sure your resume is the best it can be and you have been exploring all avenues. I offer a 100% free ‘Get The Job You Love’ program available for immediate access here

 

 

Get publicity in the paper – If you have an angle, the local paper may interview you for a story. Examples of angles include “I have 3 degrees and can’t get a job at McDonalds” or “I’ve submitted 5000 applications and still can’t get a job”.

 

See if you can get extra media attention – You may also be able to get media attention on the local news or current affair program using the same approach. Again, you will need an angle before you get in touch to pitch your story

 

 

Pull a stunt – If you don’t mind putting yourself out there, it’s always possible to pull off a stunt. Maybe you can hire a group of flash dancers to stage a dance outside the place you want to work. It can be risky, you can never be sure what the employer will think but it could also pay off.

 

Do some work experience – There is a mistaken belief that work experience is just for children. The truth is working for free for a limited time to gain experience also works for adults. At the very least you will have some more experience to add to your resume. They may even offer you a full time job if you impress them enough.

 

Move – I’ve relocated to advance my career three times successfully. The trick is to choose locations that a) no one else wants to live in b) are very small and remote and have a limited number of suitable candidates or c) have a transient population where people move on every few years creating new job opportunities.

 

 

Start your own business – If you can’t find the job of your dreams, you can always create one instead. With the internet going from strength to strength, it’s now possible to start your own business with less than $100. You can read my post on 100 Business Ideas for $100 here.

 

Take an advertisement out in the paper – Most parts of the newspapers have a section where job seekers can take out an advertisement advertising their services and availability. If you have the cash, you may want to take out premium advertising space for extra effectiveness.

 

 

Take an advertisement out on radio – Using a similar approach you can also advertise on the radio. This rarely happens so you may have the added bonus of getting interviewed by the station for free publicity.

 

Pin your resume to noticeboards – I used this approach with success when working my way around Australia as part of a working holiday. You may want to blot your your phone number and just use an email address instead to cut out prank calls and dodgy employers. (Also make sure you list references on request so they don’t end up with random strangers calling their mobile)

 

 

Set up your own website and blog about your job search – If you have time to spare and reasonable computer literacy you could also start your own blog and blog about your job search efforts to get attention. Blogs take work to get noticed so for this to be any good you will need to promote it on your social media channels

 

Write a desperate letter – Of course, if you are applying for positions and not getting a response you can always write a brutally honest letter about how you need a job to feed your children, fund your drinking etc……………..most employers won’t want to know you but every so often someone will appreciate your honesty and at least meet with you.

 

 

Write an ‘out there’ letter – Taking it a step further, you can always write a totally wacky cover letter. It doesn’t have to be totally out there. You may include a joke or personal info about how you are a GOT addict – just something different to stand out in the crowd.

 

Update your make up and wardrobe – Before your next interviews take some time to update your make up or your wardrobe. The more confident we feel, the more confident we act and since confidence is so attractive to the employer, this may give you the extra 1% you need to get the job.

 

 

Watch some You Tube videos for job ideas – YouTube can be a fantastic resource on everything from interview tips to resume writing help. Next time you need help, do a quick search of YouTube and see if you can learn or update a new job hunting skill

 

Sign up at an employment agency – Employment agencies are different to recruitment agencies. With recruitment agencies the employer is usually the client, with an employment agency you are. You have to pay for their services but they usually have one ear to the ground and can give you some tailor made tips for your job search, along with resume and interview writing. Many will also write up an entire career strategy for you to follow based on your chosen profession.

 

 

Research your industry extensively and compile a report on it – If you have the skills needed to write a research paper, you could research your industry and write and publish a report on it on the internet.  Once the report is published, you could email potential employers that may be interested in the report with a link to it and follow up a week later to let them know you are looking for employment

 

Want to get a new job? Join my free program ‘Get The Job You Love’. This course has been especially designed to teach you how to find a job you love, today. Join now

 

 

Tell everyone you know that you are looking for work and ask if they can help you – I mean everybody from the car mechanic to the lady that sells you your milk. Everyone is connected to somebody. You never know – the guy that services your car may have an aunty in a management position where you want to work.

 

Snail mail your applications as well as email them – When you apply for a job in the paper or online, snail mail a copy of your application as well. This means they get a second chance to read how fabulous you are, in case they missed it the first time

 

 

Make up work wanted business cards – Entrepreneurs have business cards that they hand out to find potential clients. There is no reason you can’t get cheap business cards made up and hand them out to people you network with or talk to. At least this way they have your contact details if they know someone who has an opening.

 

Use FiverrFiverr has a whole bunch of marketing and advertising services from $5. You can hire someone to pin a work wanted notice all over a busy train station, create a video advertisement, create a radio advertisement, proofread your cover letter for typos etc.

 

 

Use LinkedIn – We have talked about LinkedIn before, but this time I’m talking about using it to network. You can reach out to your contacts and ask for introductions to people they are connected with who may have openings.

Replace TV with job search – How many hours of non-essential TV do you watch a week just to unwind? Set a goal of replacing TV time with job search time and watch what happens.

 

Hire Elance To Do Your Job Search –Elance allows you to post jobs that you need done and applicants from around the world submit a bid for your job. If you don’t have time to update your LinkedIn profile or submit applications, Elance has access to low cost virtual assistants who will do it for you.

 

 

Download your resume questionnaire and use it for interview – Next time you have an interview take some time to prepare in advance. Simply download the resume questionnaire (you can get it from here), write out your responces and chances are next time an interviewer asks a tricky question you will already have an answer that fits the question stored in your memory bank

 

Keep a log of everything you do on your computer – Every time you do a new course, learn a new computer system, get your key performance report, feedback from a client or meet your sales targets write this information down on your computer somewhere and keep it stored in a safe place. This way when it’s time to do your resume, you will already have all the information you need and won’t have to try and remember it all. It’s easy to think you will remember the name of the accounting software you are using right now, but chances are – five years down the track you won’t remember what it was called

 

 

Go back to school – We have already talked about updating your professional development section. This time have a think about formal qualifications such as university degrees and TAFE courses that you could do to increase your career prospects. Can you become an external student or do night school?

 

Attend events – You can also attend events in your industry. These could include specific networking events, training, seminars or other places that give you an opportunity to connect with others in your field.

 

 

Check Gumtree– You can also check online classified sites such as Gumtree and Craigs List for possible job openings. You may also choose to advertise in  their work wanted section. Childcare and farming workers seem to always be in demand on these sites.

 

Check Your Facebook Profile Pic and Privacy Settings – One thing you can do right now is to check the privacy settings on your Facebook account to make sure it’s set to private. Why you are at it, check your profile picture and make sure it’s not a pic of you smoking a joint or anything else that could cause issues. A recent employer survey showed that half of all employers snoop at an applicant’s Facebook page before making a final hiring decision.

 

 

Google Yourself – Why you are at it, you may want to Google yourself and make sure there isn’t anything negative about you on the front page. If there is you can pay a service to try and have it removed or flood the internet so the listing moves down the page.

 

Try EFT to boost confidence – If you always get attacked by nerves when it comes to interview time, you might like to try the Emotional Freedom Technique, also known as tapping to combat the nerves. There isn’t enough room here to go into it, but thousands of people swear by it and a simple Google search should bring up some videos showing you what to do.

 

 

Want to get a new job? Join my free program ‘Get The Job You Love’. This course has been especially designed to teach you how to find a job you love, today. Join now

 

Get a haircut/blowdry – I don’t know about you, but a blow dry from the hairdresser is probably my no-fail way to boost my confidence. I get it done before any big business meetings but having it done before an interview will increase you confidence and have the added bonus of making you look perfectly polished.

 

 

Read a career book – If you feel like you could use some extra assistance in your job search, it may be time to hit the books at your local library. I really like ‘Nice Girls Don’t Get The Corner Office’ and What Color Is Your Parachute’.

Attend job expo – Most cities run a career expo at least once a year where you can meet with prospective employers, learn about the job search agencies available in your area and get free advice on your chosen career path. Also lots of stalls give out samples bags and who doesn’t love a free pen (or maybe that’s just me)

 

Wage subsidies – If you live in Australia, the government offers wage subsidies for some eligible job seekers. This means they subsidise any employer that takes you for part of the wage – making you more attractive to the potential employer. Check out your options by getting in touch with your local government run employment agency.

 

 

Market stall – If you don’t mind being out in the public you can always print up hundreds of copies of your resume, hire a stall at your local market and make a ‘work wanted’ sign. You never know who might be there and they may just applaud your resourcefulness.

 

Tshirt – You can also print off a ‘Work Wanted’ T-shirt and wear it whenever you are out in public. It might be a good idea to also list in bullets the sort of work you are looking for. You never know, the person walking behind you may have just lost their waitress/bar tender/assistant.

 

 

Networking Group – This is more of a traditional approach. It’s when you attend specific networking events related to your industry to make contacts and possibly network your way into a new position. Industry forums and workshops could also be beneficial.

 

Facebook advertising – Most people use Facebook advertising to sell their business to customers, but there is nothing to stop you using it to target potential employers. Facebook has great targeting capabilities with the ability to target advertising based on industry. You can always run an advertisement linked to your resume. Also Facebook advertising is very cheap with the ability to only pay when someone clicks on your advertisement.

 

 

Signature email – You can also add a signature to your personal email saying something along the lines of what sort of job you ae looking for  with a quick blurb about your experience. Just don’t reply to your current boss with your home email unless they already know you are looking.

 

Check the phone number on your resume – This seems so basic but I have on occasion received a resume that has the wrong phone number listed on it. The resume’s owner has usually contacted me because they aren’t getting a response and they think there must be something wrong with it when the only wrong thing is a typo – one digit can make all the difference.

 

 

Delete cute emails addresses – Please also check the email you are using, Many of us are still using the email address we made as teenagers. Supersexylegs or f*ck mylife may have seemed like a cool username at the time, but it’s time to get a new one.

 

Finder Fees – You could also hold a competition or offer a finder’s fee for anyone that gets you an interview through their contacts. Offering $50 to your contacts to network your way into an interview is a surefire way to make your contacts sit up and take a look at who they know that could offer you a job.

 

 

Send a shoe – It’s worked before. The basic idea is to send a shoe along with your resume and a note attached saying ‘just wanted to get my foot in the door’. It won’t work for everyone, but it will get you attention and hopefully enough to get you an interview

 

Volunteer Work – Volunteer work is a great way to increase your experience in an area, looks great on a resume and you get to help out in the community at the same time. It’s a win, win win. It also allows networking possibilities and the chance to add a new reference to your list.

 

 

Job Search Balloons – Want to work in childcare as a Nanny or rack up more babysitting hours? Hit someplace with loads of kids, print your contact information and what sort of position you want on a balloon and start handing them out. You can easily hire a helium tank from any party supply place.

Pinterest – You could start a board on Pinterest and include infographics on the skills you can bring to the job. It’s a long shot but if you have exhausted every other avenue, you have nothing to lose from trying.

 

Facebook Groups – We have already talked about your own profile and advertising but you could also look for networking groups in your area and post about the sort of position you want. In my city there are plenty of ‘work wanted’ groups that match employers with jobseekers at no charge.

 

 

Lulu Book Publishing – You have two options with this. You can self-publish a book that would benefit your industry, add it to your resume and send free hardcopies to prospective employers as a gift with your resume or you could self-publish a novel on what you can offer an employer (like a really long extended resume with heaps of details) and send this with your resume. It’s unlikely they will read it all the way but it will get their attention.

 

Press Releases – This is an extension of the ‘free publicity’ we have already spoken about. You could write your cover letter up as a ‘press release’ instead to get points for creativity or you could find an angle of your job search that media outlets would be interested in and send out a press release to drum up some publicity.

 

 

You Tube Videos – Alternatively you could create a series of You Tube videos showcasing why you are the best person for the job and include a link in your cover letter.  If you have excellent personal presentation skills and something interesting to say this could work.

 

Podcasts – Similar to putting a link in your cover letter to a You Tube video you could also create a podcast and link to it. This may be a better option if you sound ok but don’t want to put yourself in front of a camera.

 

 

Check Haro and Sourcebottle for leads – Haro and Sourcebottle match up media outlets with people to interview for their articles. Signing up for alerts is free and you can keep an eye on them and see if anyone wants to interview an expert in your industry and pitch yourself to them. This gives you another achievement to add to your resume.

 

Library talks – Local libraries are often looking for speakers that would interest members of the community. Try pitching a talk on a subject matter in your industry. It will allow you to network, build up a positive reputation and add public speaking to your resume.

 

 

Free community event talks – Similar to the Library idea, you could try pitching your ideas at community events, for community organisations or at local schools or universities if they are a good match for your industry.  Again, it allows you opportunities to network, helps position you as an expert in your field and allows you to add some new achievements to your resume.

 

Nominate awards – You could also nominate yourself for awards in your industry to gain extra publicity, add something new to your resume and give you the chance to network at industry events. You never know you might even win.

 

 

Adwords Advertising – Similar to Facebook advertising you could also try Google Adwords. Again it allows you to pay per click but it doesn’t offer the same targeting as opportunities as Facebook.

 

Ok, now before you leave make sure you sign up for my 100% free ‘Get The Job You Love’ program. It includes videos, worksheets and ideas to make your job search a success. You want a new job right? Get the password for instant access here.

 

I Failed

 

I Failed At My Career. Miserably

Hey there,

So I like to think I’m pretty good at what I do. I mean I won multiple awards during my time at ITEC Employment for getting the most people into work, I was promoted within two weeks at Darwin Skills for my ability to engage young disadvantaged youth into employment, I also received a $20,000 pay rise within my first 3 months on the job and have bulk client testimonials from clients thanking me for helping them to land their dream job. Pretty good, right?

Thing is, it wasn’t always so. To be specific for the first 10 years of my career history, I wondered daily when I was going to get fired because  I was such a bloody failure. My first job occurred in high school when I started working at a local bakery. Customers terrified me (I can’t explain it, I was just really shy and scared of speaking to people I didn’t know), I kept mucking up the manual cash register and I always freaked out that I was slicing the bread too chunky. The boss agreed with my own self-assessment and fired me for my “lack of customer service skills” within a month.

I’d like to say my next job flipping burgers at McDonalds went better but the truth is I was too slow and could never get the burgers ready in time for peak hour traffic. I resigned before my three month review because I knew they would never keep someone so slow around. After that it was a stint at the Chemist, this went a bit better but I was always overlooked for the promotions, mostly because although I was a little better at talking to customers, I was still painfully shy.

Eventually I went to work for three years at an abattoir. Yes, you read that right. I spent three years making boxes and packing meat into it. I still wasn’t very fast and was frequently told to “fu*king move faster” but it was the abattoir. I mean no one ever got fired from the abattoir. Hell, someone put a firecracker in someone’s smoke and sent the guy blind for a bit and the union still managed to keep him in his job.

I could go on, it’s a huge list of failures from cooking in a shearing shed to working behind the bar. I once even completed the start of a diesel fitter apprenticeship before I forgot to put the sump plug back in after servicing a major piece of machinery. The thing is I had zero idea of what I was good at. I didn’t think I had any strengths and really thought I was doomed to work jobs I was hopeless at for the rest of my life. It was a total fluke that I found what I was good at.

I had always been able to find work, I was self-taught on how to write a resume and could talk the talk at interview time.  In fact, I could usually find a new job within a few hours. The most is ever took for me to find a new job was 4 days and that was in a tough economic climate in a town where you actually had to wait for someone to die before they would hire anyone new.

Anyway, so I was about 25 years old and I found out this employment agency let you use their computers and copiers to print off as many resume copies as you wanted. All you had to do was have a free consult.  So I had my consult and they wrote a resume up from scratch for me and I thought “Holy Cow Man! I know more about this than he does”. That was it. I set my sights on an employment consultant job and had one within a few weeks. They actually created a position from scratch for me because they were so impressed by my resume and cover letter (I cold called them).

I was good at it, really good at it. I always exceeded any target they set for me. At one stage when one of the consultants left, they didn’t even bother replacing him. They just gave me a pay rise and handed me his caseload because they knew I could manage both. Now, I’m not writing this to boast. I’m still shy by nature and beating my own drum makes me feel uncomfortable.  In fact writing this feels really vulnerable or something.

The reason for this post is to demonstrate to those of you who have been at it for years and still feel they are never going to be good at anything, that it is 100% possible to find a job you are great at. Also, I have a short cut for you. One I wish I had known about years ago because it would have saved me 10 years of trial and error.

It’s called psychometric testing or career testing and it will show you what you are good at right now so you don’t have to work in a freaking abattoir just because they won’t fire you. These tests work because I’ve done them as part of my work and guess what they said was the ideal job for me? Employment Consultant, Human Resource Manager or Writer. How freaking accurate is that?

So if you are stuck or even if you are curious as to if the job you are in is really the best fit for you, check out the career tests below. One hour of your time to answer the questions sure beats 10 years.  And even if you know the job you are in is the right fit for you – career tests have the added bonus of giving you heaps of juicy information that you can use in your resume, selection criteria or when it comes to the interview. Win-Win.

Want to save yourself 10 years and have something awesome to help you write your resume? Click here to take the test: http://careerfitter.com/free_test/careerbuilder/index_affiliate_com.asp?afid=5329

 

 

To Your Success

Nic

How To Burn That Extra 1% In Your Job Search

How To Burn That Extra One Percent in Your Job Search

I love reading books by Robin Sharma. He has some great tips for business and for life. While he is not an Employment Consultant many of his tips are relevant to your job search so today I’m going to share some of his advice and look at how you can incorporate it into your job search.

The advice I would like to cover today is “to burn the extra one percent”. Now when talking about this in a mainstream context it could mean running that 1% faster on your morning jog or running 1% further. When I first started up running, I could not even run 1K but I increased how far I ran by 1% until I was jogging 8km every morning. Adding 1% works because it doesn’t seem like anything at the time, but it compounds to remarkable results. So let’s take a look at how you can add this advice to your job search to get results and find a job you love.

The Resume

Is there something you have been meaning to tweak on your resume that you haven’t had time to do? It may be something as simple as adding a border or changing a word in your job description but burn that extra 1% and get it done.

The Interview

Did you shine your shoes? Send a thank-you card? Spend an extra 5 minutes researching the company? What is one thing you could do to burn that extra 1% when it comes to securing the job?

The Job Search

Do you currently send 10 applications out per day? What would happen if you increased it to 11? Can you use higher quality envelopes or paper? Are you cold calling? Is this something you could implement (even if it’s one call per day, that’s seven increased job opportunities in one week).

Networking

How many people do you reach out to and ask if they have contacts in the industry you want to work in? Can you add one more person to your list? Is there someone you have been meaning to contact but have been putting it off? What’s your LinkedIn profile look like? Have you been meaning to update it to a more professional image? Do you need to add your latest qualification on there?

These are just some suggestions on how to add an extra 1% to your job search. Remember 1% isn’t a big deal at the time, but compounded over the weeks, months and years it can lead to huge results.

 

Five Things You Can Do Today To Get A New Job

Top Five Things You Can Do Today To Find  A New Job

 

If you are looking for a new job but are only applying to advertisements you see on SEEK or in the paper you are not exploring your job search potential. Yes, applying for advertisements is great because you know the employer has a job available but on the flip side this means you have a massive amount of competition for the role. (If you have missed some of my other posts, recently the shop down the road advertised for a retail assistant and ended up with 170+ applications to wade through). That’s an awful lot of competition.

 

So what are five things you can do today to find a new job?

 

  1. Reach Out – Known formally as networking, this can be as simple as telling everyone you come in contact that you are looking for work. If you want to get advanced attend some professional development sessions or networking events, but you don’t have to go this hi-tech. Finding work that hasn’t yet been advertised can be as simple as letting updating your facebook status or telling your day care provider what you are looking for. Everyone is related to somebody else and with experts telling us we are only separated from another person by six people, your new job could be just around the corner.

 

  1. Yellow Pages – Grab your copy of the phone directory, highlight a list of places you would like to work and give them a call to see if they have anything coming up. If possible always request to speak to the Manager. Getting on the phone can be nerve wrecking but you would be surprised the amount of potential opportunities it opens. The best case scenario is that they ask to interview you straight away and you get the job, worst case, they ask you to email in your resume for their records.

 

  1. Set a Target – I’m always surprised by how nobody does this. The single most powerful thing you can do right now to jump start your job search is to set a target of how many jobs you are going to apply for on a weekly basis and stick to it. Make it non-negotiable. This means that if you set your target at 20 and you can’t find 20 advertisements to apply for you have to get out of your comfort zone and start calling or writing to potential employers.

 

  1. Pick up the Pen – I have seen amazing success with this one time and time again and it is actually my number one tip. Write a cover letter, print off your resume and send a personal note to the manager of the organisation you want to work for expressing your interest in any suitable positions. I don’t know if it’s because people don’t get snail mail anymore so it’s a novelty or not but I have seen people line up four interviews in one week through this approach. (Also this eliminates any of the competition you would usually get from an advertised position)

 

  1. Revamp your resume to include achievements. I’ve said this before a hundred times but I still see hundreds of resumes that don’t do this. I have a simple questionnaire you can use to help pin point your achievements that you can download and use for free below.

Random Ways To Find Work

Random Ways to Find Work

(and believe me when I say that some of these are random)

First up I want to mention a disclaimer – Try these at your own risk, nearly all of them have the potential to backfire on you and some of them may be dangerous. This is not a list for the traditionalist and is probably more targeted towards people that need a job, any job – not a specific occupation.

Stand on the side of the road with a sign saying ‘Work Wanted’ – I used to see this all the time when I lived in Cairns and it worked. Basically the guys would get dressed in their labouring gear, pack an esky with their lunch and a water bottle, write ‘Work Wanted’ in big black nico on a piece of cardboard and stand on the side of the highway early in the morning (about the time farmers were on their way to the paddock).  This was mostly for fruit picking work and I’d use caution trying it. First of all, I’m not entirely sure it’s legal and second you never know who you are getting in the car with. The driver could be the next Ivan Milat (just saying).

Get in touch with A Current Affair or other news program – If you have a good story, you can get in touch with some of the news/special interest programs and see if they will feature you. The thing is you need an angle. For example I once saw a lady on their who despite having multiple university degrees could not get a job in a fast food restaurant because she was ‘over qualified’. The news program did a story on her and the job offers flooded in. Unless you have a compelling angle, this is a total waste of time but if you can think up something, it’s a bonafide way to drum up the job offers.

Pull a stunt – Basically pull a stunt (maybe try to beat a record or something) so you can get free media attention and people contact you and offer you a job. For example, you may try to make a record of fastest typing speed (if going for admin), let the media know you are attempting to break the record (think little radio stations and newspapers that don’t have much else on) and tell them that you are doing it because you need to find a job. Again, watch the offers role in (it doesn’t matter if you beat the record or not – just drum up the publicity before you attempt it)

Send your resume as a chocolate bar – Actually somebody did really do this because I was reading an article about it last year. The guy (or girl, can’t remember) got their resume put on a candy wrapper, wrapped up some chocolate and sent it to the employer. I can’t remember if she/he got the job but they did get an interview. Basically if the traditional method isn’t working try something wacky instead.

Use Vistaprint – So Vistaprint is a printing company that offers really cheap printing solutions (business cards, postcards, t-shirts, pen ect). You can make up a ‘For Hire’ t-shirt explaining that you are looking for work and wear it around the place. (This is an excellent conversation starter and will help you out with networking). You can also make ‘Work Wanted’ business cards to hand out around the place.

Ok, guys that’s the list so far but I’m super interested to hear if you have tried any of these and what the results were. Also I want to know if you have any other suggestions or if you have seen any other ‘out there’ ways to find a job.