Monday, March 31, 2008

How Effective is your Resume? Here’s how to measure…


When I’m asked for resume advice, I’ll often first ask…what's your resume’s hit ratio, or response rate? Usually, this question is answered by the sound of crickets.

It surprises me, especially Finance and Technology professionals whose professional lives revolve around measuring and interpreting data, don’t think to measure the effectiveness of their resume. Isn’t it natural to track how well your resume works for you?

At a minimum, couldn’t you easily track how many callbacks, interviews, and offers each version of your resume generates?

An effective resume generates a 15-20% direct-employer (non-headhunter, non informational interview) response rate. If you’re getting less, then your resume works against you. But most job changers don’t have a clue how to measure this. When I help them measure, most candidates I talk to think their resume is good, yet currently have a resume response rate in the 0-5% range.

There are two alternatives I’d suggest. One is a do it yourself solution, and the other is a web service.

Do it Yourself: Build a spreadsheet to track results. List date sent, company, contact person (if known), source, next follow up, and check boxes for Phone screen, Interview, 2nd Interview, Offer. Include a column for notes.

Keep a running average of in-person interviews (exclude recruiter interviews and informational interviews)/total resumes sent. Make sure not to double count interviews if you multiple rounds for the same job. It’s a more effective measurement when you only track actual job interviews, and leave outside recruiters and informational interviews out of the equation - While these may lead to a job interview, but they aren't truely job interviews.

Web Service:
There’s a great web service called JibberJobber, run by Jason Alba. Jason built JibberJobber as a way to track metrics of his own job search, then started letting others use it. It became so popular, that his promotion through social media caught on and he created a successful web business from the idea.

JibberJobber brings a recruiter’s dashboard to the job seeker. This tool keeps manages job search stats, resume versions, recruiting and job seeking contacts, personal network contacts, and organizes your job search like a CRM organizes a sales forces’ efforts. You can even import networking contacts through social networks like LinkedIN. JibberJobber simplifies your search, can point you in the right direction, keep track of next steps, and best of all, it’s free for a limited version.

Which one to use? It depends on personal preference. While the structured detailed approach of JibberJobber works well for those who are very disciplined, an Excel spreadsheet allows you the free form style of doing it yourself, ability to customize and track the statistics that make the most sense to you, and an unlimited database size for free (JibberJobber charges a small monthly fee once you reach a minimum size).

Either way you prefer, track your resume results. And if your resume isn’t generating a 15-20% direct employer response rate, talk to professionals to get resume advice.

Executives exploring Career Change: For a free 30 minute resume consultation, or career advice for executives, email your resume confidentially to reCareered (phil.reCareered@gmail.com), and we'll schedule a time to talk.

Staff, Managers, Entrepreneurs, and career changers outside the US: Send your resume to phil.reCareered@gmail.com to enroll in a free group teleseminar "Accelerate Your Job Search - tools you can use"

Friday, March 28, 2008

Five Tips on Finding a New Job

This U.S. News & World Report article (Five Tips on Finding a New Job) appeared February 26, 2008, and provides a great overview of how to be successful in today’s job search market.

The article talks about the importance of personal branding, Social Networking, Blogging, and promoting yourself as a Subject Matter Expert as specific job search strategies.

I disagree with how they describe tactics of leveraging your network. They U.S. News has the right idea, they just go about it the wrong way. Don't ask for an informational interview or to talk about the market or industry - it provides nothing of value for the company contact. Why is it worth the contact's time (unless they know you personally) to help you, when you haven't offered anything of value? Asking for an informational interview is a great way to get sent to HR, and back to the database. Asking to talk about the market or industry is of little value to the contact, unless you have inside information or are a Subject Matter Expert in that industry.

Instead, offer something of value to the contact. Stay tuned for an upcoming post on this tactic.

“Five Tips on Finding a New Job


Tuesday, February 26, 2008

provided by U.S. News & World Report

The jury's still out on where the job market is heading, but one thing is certain: Employers have put the brakes on hiring. Job creation fell by 17,000 in January, the first month of decline in more than four years. Hard-hit industries like banking and real estate are already seeing layoffs and hiring freezes, and that means more qualified applicants are chasing fewer job openings.

Given that backdrop, job seekers should be prepared to dig a little deeper, says Cheryl Lynch Simpson, career coach with Ricklin-Echikson Associates. "The quality of your job search skills becomes more critical in an uncertain economic climate," Simpson says. "In a nutshell, your skills need to be better, you need to be more aware of career branding, and you must be more strategic about approaching employers." Here are five tips from the pros on how to land a job in this turbulent market:


Don't count on the job boards. Online search engines and résumé banks are seductive in their promises to connect job seekers with dozens of potential employers. Some career advisers call these sites "résumé black holes," which may be a stretch, but job boards do have significant limitations.

For one, many companies prescreen résumés using software that hunts for key words relating to skills, training, degrees, and experience. Even if you are a perfect match for the job, "your résumé may never get to someone who could decipher your potential value," says Debra Feldman of JobWhiz, an executive job search consultant.

An even bigger issue is that the vast majority of jobs are never advertised—online or anywhere. Says Feldman: "That's why you should put almost all of your job energy into networking and proportionally very little time submitting résumés online."

Tap your network. Ideally, you already keep in touch with an assortment of former colleagues and industry peers who will notify you about job leads before they go public. "More important than what you know is who knows what you know," Feldman says. "Make sure you're on the radar of people who have access to the kind of job leads you want."

If you're looking to work for a specific company, the key is to connect with a current employee. That might mean asking contacts in your network to leverage their network. An easy way to accomplish this is through a networking site like LinkedIn.com, where you can essentially connect with your friends' friends. "First, ask for an introduction," says Penelope Trunk, author of Brazen Careerist: The New Rules for Success. "Then, if you're at a lower level, the social etiquette is to say you want an informational interview. If you're at a high level, say you want to talk about the market and where the industry is going."

Offer to help others. Stay in regular contact with your network so you're not asking for a favor once every couple of years, Simpson says. "Periodically pass along a tip or an article," she says. "Think of it as putting money in the bank."

If you must contact someone out of the blue, offer something in return, such as an invitation to a lecture or a link to a website that might be of interest, Feldman says. "Chances are, if you had a warm relationship, people are happy to rekindle it," she says. "If you never had one at all, they might be startled, but they'll also likely be flattered."

Leverage the blogosphere. Find blogs relevant to your industry that are written by professionals at the top of their career, says Trunk, and become a regular commenter. "The great thing about the blogosphere is that it rewards ideas and passion, so you're not judged based on your résumé," she says. Once you've developed rapport with a blogger, ask about career advice and job leads.

Promote your brand. Forget modesty: Establish yourself as an expert in your industry. This might be as simple as volunteering your skills for a community project, participating in an online forum, creating a website, or—you guessed it—blogging. You could also try your hand at writing for an industry trade journal or an alumni newsletter. "Almost everyone can be a published author," Feldman says. The idea is to build credibility in your field and set yourself apart from the competition.”

Copyrighted, U.S.News & World Report, L.P. All rights reserved. Full article at http://finance.yahoo.com/career-work/article/104496/Five-Tips-on-Finding-a-New-Job

If you’d like more information, a free 30 minute resume consultation, or some advice about your career transition, just email your resume to reCareered at phil.rainmakers@gmail.com, and we'll schedule a time to talk.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Opportunity of a lifetime

I’m reposting this blog entry by Seth Godin, author of a dozen brilliant marketing books and Seth’s Blog.

Seth’s comments are simple, yet remarkable. Incredibly encouraging and powerful.

Our greatest opportunities are borne from our greatest problems. Think about it….the greatest inventions and companies are founded because they solve a problem.

Try not to view the upcoming recession, the Real Estate and Mortgage crisis as your personal crisis. It may have been your personal kick in the butt, but it also represents the opportunity to reinvent yourself to bigger and better things.


Great post Seth….

Opportunity of a lifetime

So, there's plenty of bad economic news floating around. From the price of oil to Wall Street to bailouts to the death of traditional advertising.

Which is great news for anyone hoping to grow or to make an impact.

Change (and the fortunes that go with it) is almost always made during the down part of the cycle. It might not be fun, but it's exciting. (Where do you think Google came from?) The opportunity is to find substantial opportunities (in any field) that deliver real value and have a future. Those jobs/investments/companies/ideas are undervalued right now, but not for long.”


For the original post go to http://sethgodin.typepad.com/seths_blog/2008/03/opportunity-of.html


Executives exploring Career Change: For a free 30 minute resume consultation, or career advice for executives, email your resume confidentially to reCareered (phil.reCareered@gmail.com), and we'll schedule a time to talk.

Staff, Managers, Entrepreneurs, and career changers outside the US: Send your resume to phil.reCareered@gmail.com to enroll in a free group teleseminar "Accelerate Your Job Search - tools you can use".

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

FaceBook Strategies (1)– The Power of FaceBook Groups


Want to communicate your subject matter expertise to a targeted audience, or would a scatter shot approach be more effective?

If you want a tightly targeted audience, that will have a high likelihood of facing problems that you are uniquely qualified to solve, then check out FaceBook’s groups, one of its most powerful features.

FaceBook is all about database segmentation, to allow highly targeted marketing. So why not use the same features that financial services, auto, and CPG companies see in FaceBook, and use them in your career search?

So how can you use FaceBook groups to help your Career Search?


1. Find the right groups:
What’s the right group for you? For starters, there’s probably more than just one group. Look for groups about your industry, about your position, about your department, about software you use, about customers or tools used in your expertise.

For instance, let’s say you are an Audit Manager for a Chicago bank, you have experience in Project Management, evaluating SOX compliance of SAP systems, and you’ve worked on projects in Security, and Compliance. What groups would likely have an audience you’d want to reach?

  • Audit / Big 4
  • IT AUDIT
  • PMI - Project Management Institute
  • PMP
  • Project Manager Professionals Group Worldwide
  • Project Manager
  • IT Security
  • Information Security
  • SAP Network
  • PCI DSS Compliance Demystified
  • Compliance Professionals in Investment Banking,Asset Management Hedge Funds
  • Microsoft Dynamics CRM
  • and you could join the network Chicago IL.
Do you think you’d find an audience for your subject matter expertise in these groups?

2. Post the right message:
Posting a resume, or a message “Hey, anyone have a job opening” isn’t considered proper FaceBook etiquette, and won’t get you very far. However, commenting and posting links to industry articles in the spirit of sharing, shows you as a giver and an expert at the same time. Make sure that the article or message is relevant to the group.


3. Start the conversation:

Brag. If you’re creative, write about successful projects you’ve been involved in (you may not be able to include the company name if you can’t disclose). Again, this is sharing with the audience, and is both appreciated, and demonstrates your expertise.


4. Continue the conversation:
Comment on posts that others have started. Include more ideas than just “I agree”.

5. Include links:
Sign your post or comment with your signature block with live links to your FaceBook, LinkedIN, personal Blog, personal webpage, etc. Why? Links get you Google and Yahoo rankings.

Can you see how FaceBook groups can attract the audience who have problems that you are uniquely qualified to solve?

If you’d like more information, a free 30 minute resume consultation, or some advice about your career transition, just email your resume to reCareered at phil.reCareered@gmail.com, and we'll schedule a time to talk.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

How to Take Control of the Interview

Ever get all excited for an interview, only to be frustrated that it didn’t go as well as planned? Maybe your experience wasn’t portrayed in its best light, or your many accomplishments weren’t valued.

How can you avoid this outcome, and take control of the interview?

It’s really not that hard….partially it’s how you approach the interview, and partially how you employ some interview tactics.

Change your approach:

So how do you change your approach to gain control of an interview? Stop being defensive – most job candidates take a defensive interview stance and answer questions that the interviewer asks. The stronger candidates go on the offensive…they interview the company.

So take a strong offense in your interview approach. As a candidate, interview the company to see how the fit is for you. Get a feeling to see will your skills will be valued? Do you see a mentorship relationship with anyone you’ve interviewed with? Does the company “feel” right? Can you succeed here? Does the company’s management style and culture fit your personality comfortably? Is there growth potential for the company, and for your career?

Change your tactics:

Most candidates rattle off their life story, going through every job they’ve had since they delivered papers in Junior High. Not only does this not help you demonstrate subject matter expertise in an interview, it bores the interviewer to death. Worse yet, it wastes valuable time for you to interview the company and make an impression as a leader. If you could take control of the interview, would you try a different tactic?

So how do you interview the company? Ask questions - Lots of them. Especially ask questions where you already know the answer, based on your research. For instance, let’s say you’re a Director of IT, interviewing with a public company that stated in its last 10Q that they plan on growing 25% per year. Could you ask “If your President predicts 25% annual growth, how does that affect IT systems? Are your internal systems prepared to handle that growth? What implications does that growth have on IT, on IT security?”

Of course, you’ll want to make some advance guesses to the answer, so that you can next comment “Oh that’s interesting, I solved that problem at Company X by doing Y”. Do that 2 or 3 times, and you’ve uncovered a company’s top initiatives, problems, and risks. Better yet, you’ve subtly shown that you’ve been there and done that. All of a sudden, you’re the leading candidate, because you’ve shown foresight to anticipate the companies issues….and, by the way, you’ve already solved their problems for prior employers.

If the interviewer tries to gain control of the interview, take it back. Answer the question very quickly, don’t go into details, and quickly ask a related question back to the interviewer.

Let’s say you get a pat interview question (hiring managers use these as filler, HR use these because they don’t always know detailed technical questions to ask) like “What’s your greatest professional challenge?” As long as you’re not going for a job in PR, you could answer something like “Public speaking - I’m taking classes to improve. What are the companies (or department’s) greatest challenges?” Or “I see that industry reports project a downturn in your markets. What is the company doing to prepare? What implications do those plans have on department X? If you aren’t able to pull off this strategy, what’s plan B? What are the implications if this strategy doesn’t work?”

Of course, you’re not going to ask these kinds of detailed questions of HR, unless you’re interviewing for an HR job. So what do you take control of an interview from a HR interviewer who asks “Where do you see your career in 5 years?” Here’s a time when can work to answer a question with a question. Could you try… “It depends…where do you see the company in 5 years?”

In an interview you can own it, and set the tone of your leadership…or let the interviewer own you.


Which works better for you?

Executives exploring Career Change: For a free 30 minute resume consultation, or career advice for executives, email your resume confidentially to reCareered (phil.reCareered@gmail.com), and we'll schedule a time to talk.

Staff, Managers, Entrepreneurs, and career changers outside the US: Send your resume to phil.reCareered@gmail.com to enroll in a free group teleseminar "Accelerate Your Job Search - tools you can use".

Monday, March 24, 2008

Resume Search Optimization


Are you getting a 25% response rate to your resume? If you are, stop reading, this article isn’t for you.

If you’re getting less than a 25% response rate to your resume, then your resume is working against you and blocking you from interviews for top positions. Unfortunately, most of the population falls into the under 5% category (NOT a typo).

Have you ever complained that your resume goes into a black hole, and that no one ever looks at it?

Guess what, you’re probably right. If you’d like to do something to change that, read on…

The database is used for word searches on the resume – not the cover letter. In most cases, the cover letter gets stripped from your resume. Most of us (Boomers, Gen X & Y) were taught to write a static resume, and customize with a cover letter. Sound familiar?

And it worked in the olden days of paper resumes. But in the internet age, where resumes are delivered electronically, loaded into an Applicant Tracking System (ATS) database, and searched, the cover letter is stripped and not included in the search. Throw out the teaching of old, and embrace a new more effective way of resume strategy – Resume Search Optimization.

If your resume is searched in a database, it’s searched for by keywords. Have you ever done a keyword search yourself? You probably do one every day of your life…it’s called Google. Companies pay big money to consultants to search optimize their web pages, to make them appear at the top of a Google search.

You can do the same thing with your resume. But it requires you to think a different way.

Start with a solid base resume that paints you as a subject matter expert in your field. Then take the job description, and load your resume with key words in the job description.

So how many resume templates will you have?

One for each job you apply to…because to search optimize your resume effectively, it turns your resume into a single use document. Each employer gets a heavily customized resume.

Yes, it takes a ton of time per resume. But it gives you an unfair advantage, of gaming the HRIS database, and forcing your resume to the top 2-3%. And gets your resume seen by humans….a much greater percentage of the time.

There’s a lot more to it, and I’ll continue with subsequent postings to describe the details.

Executives exploring Career Change: For a free 30 minute resume consultation, or career advice for executives, email your resume confidentially to reCareered (phil.reCareered@gmail.com), and we'll schedule a time to talk.

Staff, Managers, Entrepreneurs, and career changers outside the US: Send your resume to phil.reCareered@gmail.com to enroll in a free group teleseminar "Accelerate Your Job Search - tools you can use".

Source: http://reCareered.blogspot.com

Related Articles:
Differentiate Your Resume With a Winning Strategy: Fishing and Response Resumes
Is your Cover Letter an Ineffective and Obsolete Tradition?

For access to more information:
Become a fan of reCareered on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Chicago-IL/reCareered/21126045429
Join Career Change Central on Linkedin: http://www.linkedin.com/e/gis/1800872

Friday, March 21, 2008

Inside the Head of the Headhunter - Justin Roy of SullivanKreiss


This week, we get inside the head of Justin Roy, Chief Operating Officer of SullivanKreiss, one of the nation’s largest recruiters of Architects and Building/Design Engineers.

Justin is responsible for the management of recruiting operations, along with client and project development. He has extensive experience with all aspects of executive-level, key management, and technical position recruiting for Architecture, Planning, Landscape Architecture, and Engineering firms throughout the United States.


reCareered: Justin, considering the slowdown in today’s Real Estate markets, how has your business been affected?


Justin: We haven’t seen ANY slowdown. In the AE industry, everything being worked on now was signed a year ago.


There will always be a need for entry level people who are presentable and who know what NOT to say. But for entry level positions, I’d say it’s slowing down. Firms now have to concentrate on servicing their clients, and many firms can sub-out entry level work.


reCareered: So if you’re working on staffing to fulfill prior year contracts, do you see 2009 being a slower employment year?


Justin: It depends on how this lasts. But even if the current Real Estate softness lasts 12 months, it will actually be good. If the building recession lasts that long, projects will have to happen fast. Everyone will have to staff up in bulk to meet demands.


reCareered: How is the AE employment market affected by retirements of the Baby Boomers?


Justin: Right now it’s helping, but it’s getting harder to find people. Statistically, there are not enough people to replace the retiring Boomers. Demand for GenX is going through the roof, and salaries are going up.


reCareered: What kinds of advice are you giving your candidates today?


Justin: Be careful of the offer. Often times more money is a tradeoff for stability – most expensive is often first out. Be careful that a firm isn’t hiring you as a band aid.



reCareered: What kinds of questions can a candidate ask to better understand risk of overpayment?



Justin: These are some top questions I’d advise A&E or candidates in any professional services career to ask:

  1. What is your backlog of work?
  2. How many other people are at this level?
  3. What are the demographics of others at this level? If everyone else is 10 years younger, you risk being first out.
  4. Do research on salary surveys online first, to find out the average salaries being paid
reCareered: What advice can you give candidates to ace an interview?


Justin: Go in with a project portfolio, whether you are an AE, IT professional, Accounting/Finance pro, or Marketing/Advertising. Let your work help sell you by using visual aids and work samples. Include articles published, examples of reports, etc. Take every part of the job, and have a visual example of your expertise.



Architecture and Engineering candidates that are interested in working with Justin can email resumes to JRoy@sullivankreiss.com.


And of course, if you’d like a free 30 minute resume consultation or some advice about your career transition, just email your resume to reCareered at phil.reCareered@gmail.com, and we'll schedule a time to talk.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Top 50 Web 2.0 Tools for Job seekers


So what’s all the fuss over Job Search 2.0?

Web 2.0 is the interactive web, where users provide the content. Why does that matter to a job seeker?

Because Web 2.0 gives every job seeker the opportunity to promote subject matter expertise. Web 2.0 gives multiple formats and platforms and tools to allow job seekers to announce to the world “I know my stuff!”.

In addition, Web 2.0 can help job seekers get found on Google, Yahoo, and other popular search engines.

So what does Web 2.0 look like? Here’s a listing of my favorite 50 Web 2.0 sites for job seekers:

  1. LinkedIN – Social Network, primarily business www.linkedin.com
  2. FaceBook – Social Network, business and personal www.facebook.com
  3. MySpace – Social network, primarily personal www.myspace.com
  4. Ning – Private Social networks www.ning.com
  5. Plaxo – Contact synchronizer www.plaxo.com
  6. ZoomInfo – Business directory www.zoominfo.com
  7. Spoke – Business Directory & Social network www.spoke.com
  8. Jigsaw – Business Directory & Social Network www.jigsaw.com
  9. YouTube – User generated video www.youtube.com
  10. Twitter – Text-like social network www.twitter.com
  11. Pownce – File Sharing social network www.pownce.com
    , Closed in 2009
  12. Flickr – User Generated Photo sharing www.flickr.com
  13. Zooomr – User generated photo sharing and text for mobile www.zooomr.com
  14. Yahoo Answers – User generated questions and answers www.answers.yahoo.com/
  15. LinkedIN Answers – User generated questions and answers www.linkedin.com
  16. Google Answers – User generated questions and answers www.answers.google.com/answers/ , Closed in 2009
  17. FaceBook Groups – Common interest based groups www.facebook.com
  18. Yahoo Groups – Common interest based groups www.groups.yahoo.com
  19. Google Groups – Common interest based groups www.groups.google.com
  20. Grou.ps – Common interest based groups www.grou.ps
  21. Blogger – Blog platform www.blogger.com
  22. Wordpress – Blog platform www.wordpress.org
  23. Typepad – Blog platform www.typepad.com
  24. Del.icio.us – Social bookmarking www.del.icio.us
  25. Ma.gnolia – Social bookmarking www.ma.gnolia , Closed for redevelopment - expected to reopen Fall '09
  26. Furl – Social Bookmarking www.furl.com
  27. Reddit – Submit, vote on, and rank news www.reddit.com
  28. Digg – User submitted reviews of websites, services, blogs www.digg.com
  29. Technorati – User reviews of what’s happening on the live web www.technorati.com
  30. StumbleUpon – User reviews and web channel surfing www.stumbleupon.com
  31. Pandora – User defined internet radio www.pandora.com
  32. Last.fm – User defined Internet radio www.last.fm
  33. Skype – Social network, IM, and VOIP www.skype.com
  34. Jaxtr – VOIP linked to websites, blogs and social networks www.jaxtr.com
  35. Fon – By, sell, and share wifi connections www.fon.com
  36. Meebo – Web based multi platform IM www.meebo.com
  37. Google Maps – Mashup maps with other data www.maps.google.com
  38. Yahoo Maps – Mashup maps with other data www.maps.yahoo.com
  39. Google Calendar – Shared and mashup calendars www.google.com/calendar
  40. Evite – User generated invitations and events www.evite.com
  41. Meetup – User generated special interest group meeting listings www.meetup.com
  42. Eventful – Create and share events www.eventful.com
  43. Favorville – People helping people www.favorville.com
  44. Prosper – Peer to Peer lending www.prosper.com
  45. Indeed – Job listing aggregator www.indeed.com
  46. SimplyHired – Job listing aggregator, also on LinkedIN www.simplyhired.com
  47. FeedDemon – Manage RSS feeds www.feeddemon.com
  48. Wikipedia – User created encyclopedia www.wikipedia.com
  49. Razume – User submitted resumes, professional community review & Feedback www.Razume.com
  50. Clusty – Cluster Search results in folders www.clusty.com

This is just a list of my favorites. There are hundreds of Web 2.0 tools available on the web today.

How will you Web 2.0 your job search?

Executives exploring Career Change: For a free 30 minute resume consultation, or career advice for executives, email your resume confidentially to reCareered (phil.reCareered@gmail.com), and we'll schedule a time to talk.

Staff, Managers, Entrepreneurs, and career changers outside the US: Send your resume to phil.reCareered@gmail.com to enroll in a free group teleseminar "Accelerate Your Job Search - tools you can use".

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Linkedin strategies – Tight vs Broad Network


There’s been a controversy going on within the LinkedIN crowd for years.

Is it more effective for your job search to build a LinkedIN network of close personal connections? Or instead, build a network with a broad reach, but weak connections?

It depends on your purpose, and networking style. If you’re reading this blog, chances are your purpose is to change careers or jobs. Also think about how your network can be beneficial AFTER you land your new job.

So let’s consider your networking style…

Are you:

1) A broad networker who tries to know everyone
OR
2) A networker who cultivates close ties and strong relationships

Most of us do a little of both in real life, and our close network is a subset of our broader network. Your LinkedIN strategy will likely parallel how you network in real life. In face to face networks, most forge strong relationships with ten close friends, plus maintain a looser network of hundreds or thousands, including people met briefly at networking events and trade shows.

Tight Network: The advantage of a tight network is your network will go the extra yard for you. These are people who are your close friends and business associates, and are likely to go to greater lengths to help you. Your tight network will introduce you to just about anyone, because they know you value THEIR reputation.

The disadvantage is a lack of critical mass. Ten or even a hundred friends do not take you very far with LinkedIN. Not only is your ability to search limited to your own network, but your ability to be found is limited also.

Broad Network: The advantage of a broad network is sheer volume. Since LinkedIN allows you 3 levels of connections, a large network multiplies exponentially into a MASSIVE network at its third level. A massive network is great for broadcasting messages, searching for employers, and searching for talent. A massive network allows you greater chances of being included in other users’ searches for your specific subject matter expertise. And finally, having a massive network gives you a better chance of finding people within your target companies or within companies who are advertising for positions.

The biggest disadvantage of a broad network is spam, but it’s avoidable. First, be careful how you invite others, so you don’t send templates that sound “spammy” – LinkedIN takes a poor view of spammers. To avoid receiving spam, set up a separate email address for LinkedIN, and set your spam controls tightly to block messages from Nigerian Lawyers who want you to cash their $20 million checks. For instance, my LinkedIN email is phil.linkedin@gmail.com (please spare me all the notifications of winning the European lottery).

Mixed Approach: Here’s what I do – a little of both. I keep a close network on my personal database (Outlook, Act, etc.), and keep a broad network on LinkedIN. I’m able to update the status line of my LinkedIN profile to let my broad network of over 8 million contacts see that I’ve posted new daily job tips. In addition, I can better serve my job changing clients by keeping a massive network of business professionals to refer to.

Please comment….I’d enjoy a discussion of what the readers have to say about what LinkedIN strategies have worked.

Executives exploring Career Change: For a free 30 minute resume consultation, or career advice for executives, email your resume confidentially to reCareered (phil.reCareered@gmail.com), and we'll schedule a time to talk.

Staff, Managers, Entrepreneurs, and career changers outside the US: Send your resume to phil.reCareered@gmail.com to enroll in a free group teleseminar "Accelerate Your Job Search - tools you can use".

Source: http://reCareered.blogspot.com

Related Articles:
Additional resources - Linkedin
Additional resources - Job Search 2.0

For access to more information:
Become a fan of reCareered on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Chicago-IL/reCareered/21126045429
Join Career Change Central on Linkedin: http://www.linkedin.com/e/gis/1800872

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Would You Stop Looking for a Job Already?


Yep, that’s right... Stop looking for a job.

You’ll find a better job, a more fulfilling career, and likely higher pay if you just stop looking for a job already.

You can be more effective in your career search if you change the paradigm. Instead, start searching for a problem. Find a problem that you can uniquely solve; a problem that needs a subject matter expert – you.

So how do you find that problem?

If you are interested in a particular company, read press releases, articles, Yahoo Finance, annual reports, 10Qs, looking for clues about that company’s problems and opportunities. You should easily find the big picture problem or opportunities, but can that affect you, if you’re not a corporate exec?

If you are interested in an industry or job function, read the trade press and industry reports to find out what the industry trends are, and think about what kinds of problems those trends cause for participants.

What tactics might a company might use to achieve its goals, or what challenges might be a result of that 25% revenue increase the company projects? If the company is merging, being bought, or is acquisitive, what kinds of problems does the post acquisition integration bring?

It’s a little like playing chess, in that you’ll have to think a few moves ahead to gain insight to potential problems.

Of course, you can still ask these questions in an interview….even better because you’ll be knowledgeable, and will look brilliant by asking such insightful questions.

How is an opportunity a problem? Let’s say a company projects a 25% revenue increase due to new offices opening. Why is there a problem, the company should be celebrating! But 25% more revenue may mean 25% more invoices, 25% larger receivables and bad debt, 25% more sales staff, training new employees, system changes, new office openings…. You may have to extend ahead a few chess moves, but regardless of your level in the company, you should start to see problems that look familiar.

So you’ve found problems…but which problem is the problem you want to solve? The one you can solve best, and will help you advance your career.

Think about how you’ve solved similar problems, problems one away from this one, the same problem in a smaller or larger magnitude, or in different industries. Or you’ve solved a problem that stopped this problem from occurring. Think outside of the box here, so you can demonstrate expertise.

In an interview, don’t, don’t, don’t say “I haven’t done it, but I can learn” (See my earlier Interview Roadkill posting). It’s death. Instead find similarities with the specific problem, in your own experience.

So stop job hunting already….and start problem hunting!

Executives exploring Career Change: For a free 30 minute resume consultation, or career advice for executives, email your resume confidentially to reCareered (phil.reCareered@gmail.com), and we'll schedule a time to talk.

Staff, Managers, Entrepreneurs, and career changers outside the US: Send your resume to phil.reCareered@gmail.com to enroll in a free group teleseminar "Accelerate Your Job Search - tools you can use".

Source: http://reCareered.blogspot.com

Related Articles:
What Can You Do When Nothing's Working in Your Job Search?
3 Things Your Next Employer Will Search For On Your Resume

For access to more information:
Become a fan of reCareered on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Chicago-IL/reCareered/21126045429
Join Career Change Central on Linkedin: http://www.linkedin.com/e/gis/1800872

Monday, March 17, 2008

Do you have any Questions?


This question is asked at the end of most interviews, and it gives the candidate a chance to shine and stand out from the pack. Do you come loaded with questions, or do you end an interview saying that all your questions were answered?

Most candidates clam up at this point, giving the impression that they are uninterested or unprepared. It’s a huge mistake.

A more effective strategy is to come loaded with questions, so you’ll always have a few left for the end of each interview. You’ll want different questions for different individuals, depending on their job function.

What kinds of questions should you ask?

Don’t use the questions part of your interview to find out more about the company….you can do that later. Use questions to further sell yourself. Use questions to show your knowledge of the company, its strategy, to uncover problems (that you can solve).


The best questions to ask are ones where you already know ½ of the answer. Why? You can show your insight, research, and preparedness more effectively through insightful questions, than by directly stating your knowledge. Insightful questions show a higher level of thinking than memorization and regurgitation of facts.


The best questions to ask are open ended. Use implication questions that uncover what happens if problems aren’t fixed, to increase the perception that you understand the problem. Questions that start with How, Why, What impact, What implications, are much stronger than questions that start with Who, What, When, or Where.


Don’t use the questions section to ask about career advancement, average raises, vacation policy, or HR type questions. These questions don’t help you sell yourself. Instead, ask questions about strategy, corporate goals, corporate problems or issues, business opportunities, industry issues or problems.


Where can you find information to ask about? It’s all over, especially if you are interviewing with a public company. If a public company, review the management comment section of the Annual report and 10Q. Review press releases, recent articles on Yahoo Finance, company blogs, blogs about the company. For private companies, check out blogs, Google search, and industry information. From these resources, could you ask “Your industry is projected to increase by 25% in the next 3 years. How is (insert company name) preparing to capitalize on this opportunity?”


If your interview is with HR, you might not wish to ask strategic questions, but broader questions like “Can you describe the company’s culture?” or “How do you see the company’s culture changing as you capitalize on industry trends that project 25% growth over the next 3 years?”. Other good HR questions are “Can you describe the personality types of people who are successful at your company?”

Don’t be afraid to ask the same question to different people who interview you. You’ll likely find that different people at different levels have different answers.


What can you gain from these questions? The specific answers you get aren’t so important. What’s important is that you are asking tough questions. Are you getting truthful answers? If you know all or part of the answer before you ask the question, you’ll know. If you’re not being told the truth during an interview, what does that tell you about the work environment and management?

So spend a good part of your interview preparation time, coming up with 10-20 insightful questions, and you’ll find your interview process to be much more successful.


Executives exploring Career Change: For a free 30 minute resume consultation, or career advice for executives, email your resume confidentially to reCareered (phil.reCareered@gmail.com), and we'll schedule a time to talk.

Staff, Managers, Entrepreneurs, and career changers outside the US: Send your resume to phil.reCareered@gmail.com to enroll in a free group teleseminar "Accelerate Your Job Search - tools you can use".

Friday, March 14, 2008

Inside the Head of the Headhunter - Steve Delaney of SJ Delaney Recruiting


I’m running a series each Friday, featuring a top recruiter, to get inside their heads. The purpose is to give readers inside information about the job market from the people on the front line. I will interview outside recruiters and inside recruiters about trends, what they look for, and how they view candidates.


My first guest in this series is Steve Delaney of SJ Delaney Recruiting. Steve works with candidates, independent recruiters, consultants, coaches, trainers, employees, outsourcers and Fortune 500 employers involved with improving IT workforce strategy and development. As the employment market continues to change – Steve works with people who are taking it to the next level.


reCareered: Steve, thanks for joining us today to get inside your head.

Steve: Glad to help…hope you don’t find anything too scary in there.

reCareered: Steve, what is the biggest problem candidates have these days?

Steve: Folks are still using the old stuff that might have been true 8 years ago. Not just the technology, but candidates are ignoring how the process has changed, and changes in how corporations look for candidates.

reCareered: You asked on LinkedIN Answers recently, “What is Overqualified” … What are you seeing?

Steve: What I’m seeing from the corporate side, consistently, that companies are concerned that if they hire a candidate who is willing to take a cut in pay because they’ve been unemployed for a while, will the employee be happy? Will it be a win-win situation?

What companies do is to look at the candidate and see that this candidate is worth more than they have budgeted for the position. The client wonders why someone would work for less than he/she was worth.

There is a big concern by corporations that the employee will be unhappy, and either retire on the job or move on quickly. Of course not every employee acts this way, but if an employer has a good choice between candidates, they will often avoid this risk.

reCareered: Do you feel that there is a bias towards younger workers in corporate HR pre-screening processes?

Steve: No, but HR pre-screening might incorrectly assume that a younger person will work harder, and can be better manipulated by management. HR might interpret a more experienced employee would “know the tricks”, work smarter and might not be a fit in an overtime hour environment.

reCareered: So what advice can you give to more experienced workers who are seeking reverse career moves for quality of life, or because they’ve been on the market for a while?

Steve: Older job changers can convey willingness and openness to learning, to have a better chance in securing a position with a younger boss. There are opportunities for older candidates to show that they are still active, still engaged in advancing their skills, so the hiring manager will see potential and take notice of people who are sharp, making age a non-issue. Hiring managers are ALWAYS looking for people who are sharp.


Steve, thanks for your insight today. If job seekers are looking for a solid IT recruiter, email your resume to Steve Delaney at steven@psdelaney.com.


About Steve Delaney: With over 20 years of military and contract IT consulting experience Steve Delaney knows that no matter what your career goals are, you have to master the art of Branding to be competitive in today’s complex employment market. The ability to attract interested employers, to interview well, and close the deal is as important as any trade you’ve been called to master.


Four years ago Steve decided to leverage the skills he instinctively mastered, to help IT professionals improve their performance in the challenging global employment marketplace. As a Web 2.0 recruiter, Steve combines forces with recruiters, HR and workforce management experts, account managers, career coaches, resume writers, employment analysts to make sensible changes in career strategy that will bring you in from the sideline and keep you in the game.


About reCareered: Of course, if you’d like a free 30 minute resume consultation or some advice about your career transition, just email your resume to reCareered at phil.rainmakers@gmail.com, and we'll schedule a time to talk.


Thursday, March 13, 2008

The Duel – Facebook vs. LinkedIN


Which is better for your job search, Facebook or LinkedIN?

The case for LinkedIN:


Strengths:

  • LinkedIN allows you to build a massive network, and allows you to limited contact with any other user directly through its InMail feature
  • You see 3 degrees of separation
  • LinkedIN has a widget that allows you to superimpose your network over Monster and CareerBuilder ads – so you can reach line managers and bypass HR.
  • LinkedIN has a similar widget to superimpose mini profiles over Outlook emails
  • The LinkedIN Answers is a great way to find your audience, and participate in discussions


Weaknesses:

  • It’s tough to broadcast messages to groups in LinkedIN, or to make messages viral
  • Facebook groups are stronger and more functional than LinkedIN groups
  • LinkedIN is built to acquire a network, more than for communicating with a network
  • Communication with LinkedIN contacts are best done through good old email, after initial LinkedIN introduction
  • LinkedIN doesn’t coordinate well as well with blogs, and has few customizable apps


The case for FaceBook:

Strengths:

  • FaceBook is built for better communication within FaceBook. It’s easy to stay in contact with your network without jumping to outside email apps
  • On Facebook, you can directly email anyone, even if you aren’t connected to them
  • FaceBook has thousands of customizable apps, allowing recommendations, 2nd degree of separation, CRM like features, business cards
  • FaceBook has customizable control to allow (or block) access to your information by group or individual (so you can block all your job search information from people within your company)
  • FaceBook has viral messaging features, which is great for spreading the word
  • FaceBook is excellent in blog integration, photo sharing and tagging, video sharing, and groups. Facebook integrates well with Flickr & YouTube
  • 250 million members and growing…fast. It’s 6x the size of LinkedIN


Weaknesses:

  • FaceBook is over-sensitive to spam, to the point of being ridiculous. If you template introductions, your account gets flagged after a few intro emails per a day. However, if you send friend requests without a note, it’s not considered spam. Go figure…
  • FaceBook recommendations, questions/answers are still weak, due to low adoption rates
  • FaceBook still has a social atmosphere, which means you’ll have friends that send cutsey messages to all of their friends…3 times a day. But you can block this feature
  • FaceBook really only gives you 1 level of separation, you can get to a second level with heavy lifting through a FaceBook app, but the app only has a small user base.
  • Others can send you pictures, or add pics to your photo album. This means you have to regularly manage your online reputation, especially your public profile and photo album.


Common to Both:

  • Both LinkedIN & Facebook have solid job boards
  • Both have a status feature that lets you broadcast one-line status texts, like a built in Twitter
  • Both have voice integration with Skype and Jaxtr
  • Both are great for catching up with old classmates, or co-workers from past lives.
  • Both have introduction features
  • Neither has an easy integration of multiple social networks, phone or email lists, or contact management. Everything has to be exported and manipulated in Outlook, so it’s very limited, time consuming, & tricky


Summary:

Both are winners, and a winning strategy is to use both, because they each have their strengths in helping you build your network and subject matter expertise. I invite my contacts to both LinkedIN (http://www.linkedin.com/in/philrosenberg) and Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/philrosenberg) …feel free to invite me to your networks on both.

Executives exploring Career Change: For a free 30 minute resume consultation, or career advice for executives, email your resume confidentially to reCareered (phil.reCareered@gmail.com), and we'll schedule a time to talk.

Staff, Managers, Entrepreneurs, and career changers outside the US: Send your resume to phil.reCareered@gmail.com to enroll in a free group teleseminar "Accelerate Your Job Search - tools you can use".

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Thank You! Make an impact in 5 minutes

I’m amazed I actually have to write this article.

Why do more than 90% of all candidates blow off the easiest way to stand out? It’s so simple…the thank you note. Yet so few take advantage of writing a simple thank you…so it’s a huge advantage to those who do.

Why write a Thank You note? Here’s 5 reasons:
  1. Thank Yous remind the hiring manager who you are
  2. Thank Yous show the hiring manager that you REALLY want the job
  3. Thank Yous give you an opportunity to highlight why you can uniquely solve the hiring managers’ problem
  4. Thank Yous show the hiring manager that you are polite, and starts your relationship out on the right foot
  5. And the obvious reason – 90% of applicants don’t write Thank You notes
Even if you think you blew the interview, write a thank you. Why? The person who aced the interview might be priced out of the company’s budget, or might take a different job.

Even if you don’t want the job, write a thank you. Why? Hiring managers talk…if you’ve impressed the interviewer, the hiring manager may refer you to one of his network.

Thank You Strategies – Email, or Letter?

At a minimum, send an email, with the advantage of speed, it can be read that night. A mailed printed letter is the least effective – at best it arrives days after the interview. If you’re set on mailing, do it right…send a hand written letter on nice stationery card stock.

To maximize your effect, send both. You get the advantage of email's speed, but nothing conveys personality like a hand written thank you. Hand written notes show you’ve taken the time in today’s time crunched world to be personal, and handwritten notes come from the heart – they are believable. Better yet, you get to remind the hiring manager who you are - twice. Almost no one uses this tactic, so you REALLY stand out.

That’s why your Mom made you write Thank You notes as a kid…so you'd know how to write them as an adult.

Executives exploring Career Change: For a free 30 minute resume consultation, or career advice for executives, email your resume confidentially to reCareered (phil.reCareered@gmail.com), and we'll schedule a time to talk.

Staff, Managers, Entrepreneurs, and career changers outside the US: Send your resume to phil.reCareered@gmail.com to enroll in a free group teleseminar "Accelerate Your Job Search - tools you can use".

Source: http://reCareered.blogspot.com

Related Articles:
Guerrilla Job Search Tactics
Is your Cover Letter an Ineffective and Obsolete Tradition?

For access to more information:
Become a fan of reCareered on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Chicago-IL/reCareered/21126045429
Join Career Change Central on Linkedin: http://www.linkedin.com/e/gis/1800872

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Online Reputation Management


If a potential employer searched for you online what would they find? Would it help you get a job, or hurt your chances?

Online Reputation Management gives you the chance to gain an unfair advantage in your job search, by making it easier for you to be found. However, if not managed, your Online Reputation could deliver damage to your job search.

Online Reputation Management has two parts:
Managing Content: Much press has been made out of companies starting to check job seeker’s profiles on social networks. How could this be damaging? These tips aren’t meant to suggest you don’t use online services, just that you make sure to review what is publicly visible. Google searches can turn all of this up:
  1. Inconsistency: Your profile could be inconsistent with your resume. Change your resume --> Change your profiles.
  2. Unprofessional Content: Your profile could show unprofessional content – This is more relevant for FaceBook and MySpace accounts, where friends can tag you to pictures, and can post things to your landing page. Make sure you set your defaults so you approve everything that goes to your account. On Facebook, check all your walls and pictures daily.
  3. Social Network Dating: Your dating history can show up on FaceBook or MySpace. If you use either of these networks to date, make sure to hide these from your landing page, so more conservative employers don’t have any reason to be concerned that you are a fan of popular porn stars on MySpace.
  4. Online Dating: If you use online dating services, your profile can turn up, if you disclose your real name or even the same email address as you use for your job search or social networking. So use a pen name and a “pen email”, and keep your private life separate from your job search.
  5. Online Photos: Your online photo album can show up in a search. Normally, this shouldn’t be a problem, unless you’ve joined groups that you might not want employers to see. Again, keep your private life private.
  6. Rants: That blog or forum you blasted shows up on Google searches. Will your comments be favorable if reviewed by a potential employer?
Maximizing Effect: Online Reputation Management can amplify your exposure, and help your recognition as a Subject Matter Expert
  1. Search Engine Ranking: Posting comments, blogs, and social network activity all increase your Google & Yahoo Search engine ranking. My name, Phil Rosenberg is more common than you’d think. I’ve heard of 6 in Chicago alone, and there are hundreds nationally. Social networking helped launch me personally from page 15 on Google last year to #1 on Google and top 4 on Yahoo (depends on the day), via my LinkedIN and FaceBook profiles.
  2. Promoting your Subject Matter Expertise: Getting highly ranked on Google and Yahoo are the easiest ways to promote your Subject Matter Expertise, and to show potential employers that you have solved their unique problem. Top consultants use this technique to keep their project pipeline full.
  3. LinkedIN and FaceBook profiles are just the first step: Putting up a profile gets you online, not found. Using Search Engine Optimization (SEO) techniques on your profile gets it highly ranked.
So how do you monitor your online reputation? Search for your name with Google & Yahoo – This is a requirement of many employers, prior to placing full time staff. When I was with Robert Half, it was a requirement to do a 6 combination search of a potential full time placement before start date. Why? Basic due diligence, instituted after MSNBC reported that a competitor placed a consultant awaiting sentencing for pension fraud, at another pension client … discovered by an employee Googling the consultant.

In addition, Personal Content Aggregators, like ZoomInfo, Spoke, and Jigsaw crawl the web for information and references to business professionals. Look yourself up, and follow the links, so you know what employers see.

It's your choice…Managed well, your online reputation can give you an unfair advantage over other job seekers. Left to run amok, your Online Reputation could kill your chances for a great job.

Executives exploring Career Change: For a free 30 minute resume consultation, or career advice for executives, email your resume confidentially to reCareered (phil.reCareered@gmail.com), and we'll schedule a time to talk.

Staff, Managers, Entrepreneurs, and career changers outside the US: Send your resume to phil.reCareered@gmail.com to enroll in a free group teleseminar "Accelerate Your Job Search - tools you can use".


Source: http://reCareered.blogspot.com

Related Articles:
Career Change Advice: Be a Subject Matter Expert
Why use Social Branding to search for a job when you’ve already got a job?

For access to more information:
Become a fan of reCareered on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Chicago-IL/reCareered/21126045429
Join Career Change Central on Linkedin: http://www.linkedin.com/e/gis/1800872

Monday, March 10, 2008

What to Wear? Acing the Interview – Part 1


A client of mine feels like he always comes in second in interviews. He does well, but he wants to do more than just do well. He wants to Ace the interview.

So how do you Ace the interview? How do you communicate that you're the top person for the job?

I'll be publishing interview tips in an "Acing the Interview" series.

First – What do you wear in an interview?

The old paradigm was to overdress for the interview. Translation: Suit. But that's not the right message to send in many places today, that are business casual. Overdressing may give the hiring manager the impression of you being stuffy, rigid, not "fitting in", or too formal. On the other hand, dressing under hiring manager expectations may give the impression of sloppiness, not serious, uncaring, or not wanting the job.

Miss either way, and you give the definite impression that you didn't listen. Probably because you didn't listen…or ask.

Because when in Rome…..yep, dress like the Romans.

So how do you find out what to wear? ASK. Definitely ask the person who set up the interview, but remember, they are likely in HR, not in the hiring manager's department. So who should you ask?

By now, you should have been networking, in person or virtually (through LinkedIN and FaceBook), so you have inside tracks to the company. Reach out to your contacts, and ask them about the company, what it's like working there, how formal the company is, dress code, etc. Ask how the company feels about facial hair if you are a man with a mustache, beard, or goatee (I've been personally asked how attached to a goatee I was during an interview – I wasn't attached, and got the job).

But there are other places to find out what Rome is like. Check the company's website, annual report, and marketing literature. How are the people dressed? If the CEO isn't wearing a suit in the Annual Report, chances are that you shouldn't wear a suit to an interview. Talk to recruiters….even if they didn't arrange the interview. Recruiters will know if they work with the company, and they'll appreciate you telling them about a specific opening.

Search for blogs about the company. Many larger companies have official blogs that describe life inside that company. Many unofficial blogs exist also, where you can see the good, the bad, and the ugly about the company you're interviewing with.

Executives exploring Career Change: For a free 30 minute resume consultation, or career advice for executives, email your resume confidentially to reCareered (phil.reCareered@gmail.com), and we'll schedule a time to talk.

Staff, Managers, Entrepreneurs, and career changers outside the US: Send your resume to phil.reCareered@gmail.com to enroll in a free group teleseminar "Accelerate Your Job Search - tools you can use".

Friday, March 7, 2008

LinkedIN Strategies: Recommendations

One of LinkedIN’s more powerful features for job seekers is their recommendations feature.

LinkedIN allows users to ask for recommendations from past managers, co workers, business partners and service providers. Some on LinkedIN have collected hundreds, others don’t use this at all.

As a job seeker, LinkedIN Recommendations can be a way to highlight your accomplishments and Subject Matter Expertise. Better yet, it’s done publicly, and on a website that is VERY searchable on Google & Yahoo. Still better, it’s a way to give references, that won’t get bothered by calls or emails.

But how can you maximize the value of LinkedIN’s recommendation features? Here are 5 tips:

1. Choose the message you wish your recommendation to portray. Plan strategically what each recommender will say about you.
• Tell them the points you’d like them to make (Expert in .net Project Management, Saved X% for company through this project, Developed and led marketing strategy for nonprofit that increased donations by X%)
• Do not ask for open ended recommendations – the recommender wants to help you and wants to know what you’d like them to say
• Open ended recommendations can lead to lame or unexpected results

2. Choose your recommenders carefully – The recommender’s reputation is very relevant
• Choose recommender for title, your work relationship with them, or for LinkedIN status
• You can have other people than your boss recommend you. If you deal with clients, have your favorite clients recommend you.
• Heavily LinkedIN recommenders carry some stature on LinkedIN, especially if they recommend your networking help

3. Have recommenders mention points you want to highlight
• Readers believe what others say about you, more than what you say about yourself

4. Don’t display 300 recommendations
• Choose 10 maximum, so the reader focuses on the recommendations that best sell you

5. Give before you ask
• Do the recommender a favor, connect them with someone in your network, give them a sales or recruiting lead, or send information of interest first, before asking for a recommendation

Finally, make sure to send a thank you note, thanking the recommender. Offer to recommend them in return.

LinkedIN Recommendations can be a powerful Web 2.0 tool to build your subject matter expertise and network. You might even get job leads.

Executives exploring Career Change: For a free 30 minute resume consultation, or career advice for executives, email your resume confidentially to reCareered (phil.reCareered@gmail.com), and we'll schedule a time to talk.

Staff, Managers, Entrepreneurs, and career changers outside the US: Send your resume to phil.reCareered@gmail.com to enroll in a free group teleseminar "Accelerate Your Job Search - tools you can use".