December 22, 2010
The Monster 11 for 2011: Career Experts Who Can Help Your Job Search
There's no need to go through a job search on your own. If you're looking for work or may someday be looking for work (and, let's face it, these days that's just about everyone), there are many experts online providing excellent career advice--on resumes, job-interview tactics, hot industries for career growth, taking your career to the next level, and much more.
To help you find some of that great advice, we chose 11 career experts worth watching in the coming year. Of course, there are far more than 11 worthy experts--this list is definitely not all-inclusive, and we could have easily made the list 111 names long. But these 11 are a great place to start, and you can broaden and adjust your personal cadre of career experts by following them and then seeing whom they follow, retweet, or otherwise interact with.
We hope you find this list helpful-- if you want to let job seekers know about other experts, please do so in the comments section! (And follow us on Twitter at @HotJobs_editor or @MonsterCareers--we discuss these experts' work often.)
Here they are, the Monster 11 for 2011:
Penelope Trunk (of Brazen Careerist)
Find her at http://blog.penelopetrunk.com/ or on Twitter: @BrazenCareerist
Trunk blogs frequently on a wide variety of topics related to career advancement--she describes Brazen Careerist as "a career management tool for next-generation professionals." Trunk's advice also appears in more than 200 newspapers.
Huhman is a prolific writer and well-respected expert; she's the author of many ebooks and writes an Examiner.com column. Although she specializes in "helping Gen Y find internships and entry-level jobs," Huhman is very active on Twitter and shares a wide range of advice there.
An expert on social media for job seekers and entrepreneurs, Salpeter is also a career coach and a professional resume writer. She's very active on Twitter, and she offers new advice articles on her website two or three times a week.
Tahmincioglu, the author of the book "From the Sandbox to the Corner Office," writes a weekly career-advice column for MSNBC.com.
O'Donnell is a career strategist and workplace consultant who provides practical advice for job seekers at any stage of a career; she's a frequent blogger and very active on Twitter.
Career Rocketeer provides excellent advice on personal branding and related topics; Perry describes himself as "an ambitious entrepreneur and a career search and personal branding expert."
Morgan describes her site as a resource for "lifetime career navigation"--and she's true to her word, providing no-nonsense practical advice for people finding their way up a job-search mountain. On her site, she points to helpful content on a broad range of other sites.
Twitter is a great place to find Svei, a longtime job-search strategist. Her information-packed site is for "for executives and professionals who want to create their next great career opportunity."
Kohut is a staffing consultant who says she's on a mission to help 1,000,000 job seekers--and that's something we can definitely get behind. (Also check out her other sites, CareerWakeUpCalls.com and 101JobSearchSecrets.com.)
Barrett-Poindexter's Career Trend website provides plenty of advice on crafting a powerful resume; she's also very active on Twitter, sharing links to other career experts' articles.
A resume expert and the president of Blue Sky Resumes, Fletcher provides excellent resume and job-search advice. Fletcher describes Career Hub's goal as "connecting job seekers with the best minds in career counseling, resume writing, personal branding and recruiting."
(Are you a recruiter or HR professional? Check out our Monster Thinking 11 for 2011 for our picks of top industry bloggers.)
December 17, 2010
The Monster 5 for Friday--Careers Edition--December 17
The coming year looks to be (we hope) a bit brighter. There are plenty of encouraging signs. For instance, initial claims for unemployment fell last week--and here's why that's good news.
Whether or not you believe in New Year's resolutions, the anticipation of opening a new calendar and starting a fresh new year is as good a reason as any to try some new things--in your career or in your job search.
To that end, we've chosen this week's "Monster 5 for Friday"--links to some of our favorite career-advice articles--with an eye toward making changes for the better. We hope they give you something to think about as you plan your 2011 resolutions or simply begin planning some fresh approaches to the hunt for a new job.
5. Before looking to the future, it's wise to make sure we've learned lessons from the past. Check out this article from Manpower's MyPath site, "Top 10 Job Hunting Tips of 2010."
4. According to a recent study cited herein, 20 percent of us need the advice in this article from Forbes.com: "How to Stop Procrastinating."
3. Do you want to take your career to the next level in 2011? Consider the tips in a new article on Monster+HotJobs: "Make Over Your Career in 2011."
2. Is your resume as stale as yesterday's news? It may be time to start thinking about it in a new way. Check out the interesting ideas in Jobacle.com's "6 Keys to the Resume of Tomorrow."
1. And just in time for your resolution consideration, we have some great new advice on Monster.com: "11 Things You Should Resolve Not to Do at Work in 2011."
December 16, 2010
Questions to Ask in an Informational Interview
As an old year ends--a year in which you were perhaps unsatisfied with your job or had trouble even finding a job--it's natural to start thinking about new beginnings.
Are you in your dream career? If not--why not? Perhaps 2011 could be the year that you made steps toward it. Switching careers is never easy, but one first step is easy (it's also a great chance to network): an informational interview with someone who's in the career you want or who's working at your dream employer.
Look to your network, on LinkedIn, for instance--and see if there's someone you can reach out to. And don't be shy about asking--being asked to share knowledge and expertise is very flattering, and most people love to talk about themselves.
I was recently interviewed by the college-age daughter of a friend of a friend; she wanted tips on beginning an editorial career. She asked some smart questions, so I thought I'd share them, along with some suggestions of my own:
- How did you get started in your career, and what has your career path been?
- What education or training is most important?
- What is your average day or week like?
- What traits make you (or anyone) good for your line of work?
- What do you love about your work?
- What frustrates you in your work?
- What are some common misconceptions about your work?
- How could someone with my background potentially transition into your career (or company)?
- Where do you see the industry headed, and how could someone like me prepare for those changes?
- Do you know anyone else it would be wise for me to talk to?
Informational interviews can be done over the phone--but it can be even better to meet your interviewee and buy him or her a cup of coffee or tea, to give the interview a more personal feeling. (And if you do conduct the interview over the phone, sending a follow-up note to say thanks.)
Do you have any suggestions about informational interviews--or good questions you've asked or been asked? Share them in the comments section, or find me on Twitter to continue the discussion there.
(Get more advice on informational interviewing.)
December 14, 2010
Tips on Handling a Longer-Than-Expected Job Search
Even the most talented and motivated job seekers may have a difficult time finding a job these days. Many job seekers have had to spend months, or even more than a year, trying to secure work. And this delay can have a really devastating effect on a job seeker's motivation and self-confidence--both of which are are characteristics that are critical to a successful job search.
Writer, coach, and corporate trainer Jean Baur, the author of the recently released book "Eliminated! Now What: Finding Your Way from Job-Loss Crisis to Career Resilience," has advice on how job seekers in this position can stay motivated. She says that one of the best things people can do when they begin to feel stuck in their search is to take a critical look at which methods are producing some results and which aren't--and then make appropriate adjustments.
And, she adds, job seekers need to take care of themselves: "You can better cope with the feelings associated with a long-term career transition if you're not worn out, and take care of yourself through therapy, physical exercise, and even volunteering. A new project or hobby can be another way to go," she says.
"The real issue here is self-care," Baur says. "The obstacle that many people have to get over to do this is a false sense that this is wrong--that they’re selfish if they take care of themselves. Job seekers need to realize that balancing the demands of finding a new job with smart ways of caring for themselves will make them more successful."
Baur offers these additional dos and don'ts for persevering through a long transition:
1. Create contingency plans so that if your search goes on longer than expected, you know what you'll do.
2. Take care of yourself during this demanding process. Find the things that restore you so that your search doesn't become drudgery.
3. Work hard on your search, but don't let it eclipse your whole life. Positive results come from short breaks and rewards.
4. Research opportunities for training, whether in your existing area of expertise or something new. Adding new job skills will broaden your market and give you an area where you can see immediate results.
5. Use volunteering as a way to expand your network. This effort keeps you connected to others and ensures you’re doing something productive besides looking for work.
1. Become a job-search machine. You'll wear yourself out and won’t be presenting your best self to others.
2. Assume you know how and when you’ll discover your next opportunity.
3. Get stuck. If one method isn't working, try another.
4. Tell your network that there are no jobs out there. This is a depressing message.
5. Be unwilling to compromise. Sometimes you might have to take a small step back to move forward.
December 10, 2010
Monster iPhone App: Find Jobs with Your iPhone
By Vasu Nagalingam, Senior Product Director, Consumer, Monster Worldwide
Monster designed the app to be the perfect complement to its website experience, giving you access to the Monster account you've already created online--including your resumes, your favorite job searches, your apply history, and so on. It's all completely accessible immediately via the app, from wherever you are. Plus, all your activity within the app (such as searches and job applies) is automatically kept in sync with your online account, and is immediately available via the website.
Here are some ways to get the most out of Monster's iPhone app:
Set up your Monster account and create your resumes: If you don't have a Monster account, go ahead and set one up; then create your resumes. You can save as many as five different resumes on your Monster account--and all of them are then accessible when you sign in to your Monster iPhone app. If you have any favorite job searches, go ahead and save them under Saved Searches. They, too, will be available on the Monster iPhone app.
(The iPhone's small screen would make creating a resume there difficult, so Monster recommends that you set up resumes via the website.)
Get the Monster iPhone app: Download the Monster iPhone app for search for "monster.com" on iTunes.
Sign in to your account to access your data: At the Sign In screen, use the email address and password for your Monster account to sign in to the app. This will allow you to access your resumes and favorite searches on the iPhone. (And if you're signed in, when you do find that cool job via the app, you can apply right away.)
After you sign in, you are taken directly to the My Profile screen, which allows you to access the app's functions.
Search for jobs: There are two ways to search for jobs: a direct job search or a saved (favorite) search.
Tap on Job Search to start searching for jobs. Monster’s latest semantic search engine--Power Search--is available on the app. Enter a job title, skills, and a location to search for jobs. You can also use the iPhone’s GPS feature to search for jobs near you.
If you have favorite searches saved on your account, they will be accessible via the Saved Search option on the My Profile page. And if you perform a search on the app, you can save it as a favorite by tapping on Save on the Search Results screen.
View jobs and apply to or save them: On the Search Results screen, you can tap each row to view employers' job postings. If you want to apply to the job and already have a resume saved on your Monster account, tap on Apply. Otherwise, tap on Save to save the job so you can apply later. (This saved job will also be available on the Monster website when you log into your account.)
Some employers require that you apply via their own websites; typically, these employer sites are not optimized for mobile devices, and the iPhone doesn't let you upload a resume to these sites. So the Monster iPhone app encourages you to save these jobs and complete the job application via the website.
Use the app to manage your job search: The Monster iPhone app contains a few features that enable you to easily check for new jobs while on the go. When you sign in to the app the first time, the app, by default, will remember your account credentials. This allows the app to take you directly to your Profile on subsequent startups, so you can get to your jobs quickly and easily. If you don't want to be “remembered” on the app, you can change this behavior on the Settings screen, and tell the app to require your account credentials at every startup. (This setting is only on the iPhone app and does not impact your experience when you use the website.)
As the economy slowly begins its recovery, employers are beginning to create and fill new positions--and the Monster iPhone app for job searches is a great way to make sure you don't miss any of these new opportunities.
December 09, 2010
4 Qualities That'll Get You Hired: Interview with Garrett Miller
Garrett Miller is a workplace productivity coach and trainer, and he's the author of the book "Hire on a Whim: The Four Qualities that Make for Great Employees." He's also president and CEO of CoTria, a company that provides time-saving solutions to help clients manage more efficiently; he's widely known for his extensive experience in hiring, training, attracting, and retaining top talent.
We asked him to put his hiring expertise to work for job seekers, and tell us what qualities can make them more attractive to the people doing the hiring process. He says these tips will help a recent grad with "zero relevant job experience" to compete with industry veterans.
"There are four essential qualities every exceptional employee possesses," he says. "And experience is not necessarily one of them. These four qualities are nonnegotiable from the smart hiring manager's perspective, and they can't be taught."
Miller explains these traits, as well as practical ways to demonstrate them during your interview:
Work ethic: A set of values based on the virtues of hard work and diligence.
How to show it: Describe activities--jobs, assignments, internships, classes, extracurricular activities such as sports teams or clubs--that required intensity, motivation, a sense of purpose, and a passionate desire for self-improvement.
Humility: The ability and willingness to be taught.
How to show it: When talking about your work style, describe a difficult situation when you asked for help. Highlight team and group working scenarios, to demonstrate that you can collaborate. Don't be shy about discussing an embarrassing moment or an incorrect choice--and emphasize what you learned from it.
Integrity: The innate ability to do what's right, even when influenced to do otherwise.
How to show it: Share one of your biggest disappointments or failures, and talk about how you took the appropriate level of responsibility for it. Mention an instance of moral ambiguity--and how you handled it. Own your successes and your failures.
Maturity: The quality of seriousness, thoughtfulness, and consciousness in thought and actions.
How to show it: Give the interviewer a sense of how you see yourself years from now, so he or she can gauge how realistic your dreams and goals are. Talk about an experience in life that was particularly important in shaping who you've become. Show in your stories and demeanor that you are at ease with people and can navigate through touchy emotional situations.
December 03, 2010
The Monster 5 for Friday--Careers Edition--December 3
The monthly unemployment report was not nearly as cheery as we'd hoped it would be: The unemployment rate inched closer to dreadful double digits (up to 9.8 percent) as jobs were cut in construction, factories, and financial firms. Private companies created only 50,000 jobs--significantly fewer than the 160,000 private-sector jobs created in October (and the smallest gain since January).
This disappointing news caught many experts by surprise: They'd predicted approximately 150,000 new jobs, due to myriad positive indicators--including busier factories and a relatively strong start to the holiday shopping season.
But the news may be better than it appears: Hiring during recent Novembers has been very volatile, making accuracy difficult. Joel Naroff, president of Naroff Economic Advisors, said December's employment figures would probably show a rebound. "We shouldn't panic," Naroff said. "In any recovery, it is not smooth sailing."
In other news about the report, Forbes.com has a blog post about the U.S. Labor Department's announcement of a change to the way jobs numbers are recorded: starting in January, it will record people who have been unemployed for up to five years (instead of up to two). At the same time, the New York Times is reporting on a disturbing trend: the longer a person is unemployed, the harder it becomes to find a new job.
And here are five more more helpful new career-advice articles from this week:
5. Every job interview is different--but there are some general principles that can guide you in just about any interview, for any job. Read "Selling Yourself in the Job Interview."
4. Getting ready to head to your company holiday party? Read "Office Holiday Party Etiquette" and "Make Your Holiday Party Work for You."
3. Not all jobs are posted in public forums. Get tips finding them, in "Proof of the Hidden Job Market."
2. Are you addicted to low-paying jobs? Seems unlikely, but the Wall Street Journal makes a case, in "A Program for Poor-aholics."
1. If you're looking for work, some activities are more productive--better uses of your time--than others. Read "How to Beat 8 Job-Search Time Wasters."