Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Bring a Granola Bar to your Interview


Who knew? In my best Family Feud announcer voice: "Things you should bring to a job interview?" A granola bar, or other small munchable. 

After all, which would be worse:

  • Your interview is delayed. You sit. And sit. And wait. You finally hear your name called. You stand up--and realize your blood-sugar has tanked, and you're going into the interview worrying you're going to pass out before you even get to the handshake. 
  • You're in the interview. Your prospective employer suggests that you contact her colleague So-and-So. You need to write that name and phone number down--and end up rummaging in your pretty new oversize purse or briefcase, only to realize  you forgot to bring a pen.

Come to think of it... you should also bring a pen to a job interview. One that you've pre-tested to make sure it's not out of ink.

Are there any additional things that could make a poor first impression? Find out with the graphic checklist linked above!

Monday, July 21, 2014

What Fork Goes with the Escargot?

And do I really want to eat a snail?

  • If facing down a full, formal table setting makes you bonkers...
  • If you're not sure whether to eat fried chicken with your fingers...
  • If you've got no clue how much to tip a coatroom attendant...
  • If you don't want to put your napkin where it signals "take my plate away, I'm finished" if all you really want to do is visit the powder room...

Here's a link for you! http://www.etiquettescholar.com/

Find out the answers to these and many more obscure Dining Etiquette questions, before you go on that big job interview that will include a meal.

Friday, July 18, 2014

Can You Do Me a Favor?


If you're asking somebody on LinkedIn, and use that as a subject line, probably not.

Here are some tips to getting responses when your email arrives out of the blue, and (worse yet!) you seem to want something.

Thursday, July 17, 2014

No Experience? "Trust Me," says Mom!


Interesting thought experiment on this page--moms agree that they would choose as a babysitter someone they've know for a long, long time over someone with lots of fancy credentials.

What shows trust? Being promoted to greater responsibilities. Singing endorsements on your LinkedIn page. References who are willing to praise you to high heavens in a phone call from a prospective employer. 

Knowing how to do the job is important. But an employer's willingness to trust you not to embezzle funds, crack rude jokes to clients, and work as a great member of a team--that's priceless!

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Tell Me About Yourself: How To


This blog post assumes you've gotten the interview, and you're asked "so... tell me about yourself." Ugh! Deer in the headlights moment?

Here's how to do some homework ahead of time, how to set up what amounts to a personal elevator speech about you--the subject you're supposed to know best.

It wouldn't hurt to try some of these strategies before you sit down to compose a cover letter for a specific job, either! 

Monday, July 14, 2014

Don't Operate in a Vacuum


Here's an article on asking friends and networking contacts for their resumes.

But why would you want to? After all, you're looking for a job, not trying to hire someone!

The point is that you can learn from others' resumes, particularly if they are in a position you aspire to hold. You can learn what to include, and what to leave out, if you ask tactfully for some help putting together your own resume.

Thursday, July 3, 2014

How to Make LinkedIn Work for You


Use LinkedIn:

  • Build your profile
  • Network
  • Get involved

Okay, I've said as much before. But here's an excellent article that goes way beyond the cookie-cutter advice and tells you how to do these things, with step by step advice on what counts as "building your profile," "networking" and "getting involved."

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

A Website of Your Own


If you're looking for a good summer career-advancement project, consider setting up your very own website. Above are some links to getting started--kinds of things you can include, what to leave out, and so on.

There's advice you'll find here about getting your own domain--paying for a website with your name on it. That's one option. You can also go the totally free route, using Google. If you check out the sidebar on this blog, you'll see that I set up my own website, and gave it an "alias" link that I hope is fairly memorable ("jpljpl," my initials twice, through the free service "tiny url" which you can access at http://tinyurl.com). 

Google's websites are completely free, and limited enough that even I can set one up. The only thing you need is a Google account (email account, which gets you access to things like Google voice, Blogger, the ability to set up alerts when new web information is published, etc.)