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Job Interview Mistakes

Jeff Altman, The Big Game Hunter relays a story from an interview he conducted to help you learn from other people’s mistakes. 

 

Jeff Altman, The Big Game Hunter has been a career coach and recruiter for what seems like one hundred years.

JobSearchCoachingHQ.com will be launching soon with advice for job hunters that will streamline your search, help you avoid making costly mistakes and land your next job faster. Sign up to be notified when we are open.

Connect with me on LinkedIn http://bit.ly/thebiggamehunter

Small Business: The Sweet Spot in the Job Market

The propaganda is consistent and it gives the advantage to big companies.

People tell me all the time that they want to work for a large company. Generally, they believe that there is stability working for such a firm that doesn’t exist in a start-up or small company.

It’s all propaganda.

Yes, in the last recession, small companies went out of business. But large companies fired hundreds of thousands of workers, including over 400,000 in technology in a two-year period. Does this sound like stability to you?

Read the reports from The U.S. Labor Department.

Ninety percent of all job creation is going on in smaller businesses.

Why are you only investigating large companies when the greatest opportunity to find work is with small companies?

 

© The Big Game Hunter, Inc. Asheville, NC  2016

The Most Important Lesson from a Recession Plus Five More

The job market started to slow down in March, 2001, and was about to exit recession in August, 2001, when terrorists destroyed The World Trade Center. In the aftermath, millions of people lost their jobs and struggled for years to find work.

Because the job market collapse was so sudden and so deep, few were prepared for what happened.

That should never be the case with you.

You see, the most important lesson I can give you from the last recession is this:

1. Make sure you have a functioning network of resources in place in case you need it. Connect with as many people as you can on LinkedIn, MySpace, Facebook, Xing and any other social network sites that you can but do not overestimate their value.

2. Exchange personal e-mail addresses and phone numbers with co-workers and former co-workers.

3. Stay in “good graces” with as many leaders in your organization and former organizations as you can.

4. Have lunch with someone new and/or different every day.

5. Write your resume.

6. Get involved with a networking group proactively.

Don’t wait for a crisis to take action.

 

© The Big Game Hunter, Inc. Asheville, NC  2016

I Hate Applications

One of the most common complaints that jobseekers have is, “Why do I have to fill out a (*#!*!!#$) application? Everything they need to know is in the resume.”
Several years ago, a banking client hired a well-qualified person for a difficult to fill software engineering job. About a week after the person started, they discovered the individual had lied about having a college degree. Security met them at their desk with a shoebox of their personal possessions as they returned to work from lunch on the Friday of their first week of employment.

Employment applications are a legal document; resumes are not. If you look at most applications, the potential employer provides a caution or warning that says something to the effect of, “Lying on an application is grounds for dismissal.” Since most background and reference checks are completed after you have started your new job, an application notifies a potential employee of a risk.

They also provide a simple snapshot of a person’s writing skills (and penmanship for that matter) and attention to detail that a resume cannot.

All applications are somewhat similar, so to create the best impression you can, as well as to save time when filling them out, create your own master employment application. List former jobs, making sure you have the correct addresses, telephone numbers, and the dates of your employment. Use this as your “sample form” when filling out a real application.

If you are unsure about a specific month that you started a job several years ago or a salary that you were paid, DON’T JUST GUESS! Add the phrase “approx” (for approximately) next to the item. This tells the interviewer that you are not sure of the exact month or salary and that you don’t want to lie when filling out the form.

Don’t leave questions blank. Insert a dash or N/A (for not applicable) if it doesn’t pertain to you. Proofread. Proofread. Proofread. One of the advantages of having a master form is that if your spelling is not perfect, you have a place where you have written the word down previously and have spelled it correctly.

Try to write neatly. It’s not that great penmanship will get you the job but poor handwriting is noticed.

Lavender may be a nice scent for the bathtub but a poor choice of ink colors when filling out a form. Stick with blue or black ink when completing them. Some firms scan answers into systems that won’t recognize any other color.

DON’T LIE! In good or bad employment markets, nothing is worth having to explain to your friends and family why, after telling them so much about your job hunting journeys, after telling them you (finally) have a job, after telling people that you were enjoying the new job, after finally feeling comfortable, there is no worse moment than seeing security at your desk.

 

© The Big Game Hunter, Inc. Asheville, NC  2016

The Lunch Interview

Jeff Altman, The Big Game Hunter tells you a few of the obvious things to look out for as well as how to handle one far less obvious one. 

Jeff Altman, The Big Game Hunter has been a career coach and recruiter for what seems like one hundred years.

JobSearchCoachingHQ.com will be launching soon. Sign up to be notified when we are open.

Connect with me on LinkedIn http://bit.ly/thebiggamehunter

Job Search Radio – Telling Stories, Not Tall Tales

Telling stories is one of the most effective ways a speaker connects with an audience. The same is true for people who are interviewing and networking.

Dr. Adrian McIntyre and I have a fast paced conversation about story telling and different ways to tell them so that your audience is engaged, involved and wants to fall in love with you.

Listen to the podcast on the web

also in iTunes, Stitcher, and TuneIn

Jeff Altman, The Big Game Hunter has been a career coach and recruiter for what seems like one hundred years.

JobSearchCoachingHQ.com will be launching soon with advice for job hunters that will streamline your search, help you avoid making costly mistakes and land your next job faster. Sign up to be notified when we are open.

Connect with me on LinkedIn

What Kind of Pace Are You Trying to Set For Your Job Search?

I ran the New York Marathon on a sunny day in November with the temperature at 78 degrees. It was my first marathon and, I suspect, it may be my last one.

My friend, Frank Boros, with whom I trained for more than a year, and I lined up toward the back of the pack of more than 20,000 runners on the Staten Island side of the Verrazano Bridge.

Our goal was to finish and, on a day as warm as that, we were confident that we could finish but not sure we could accomplish our goal of under six hours.

As the cannon to start the race was fired, we really couldn’t move at all because so many people were ahead of us. As a matter of fact, we couldn’t move for ten minutes and at that point we were barely walking.

Eventually, we started to jog and established a pace for ourselves that allowed us both to finish. I had heat exhaustion and missed a wedding I was to attend that night.

Along the way, we saw many people who, as soon as they could jog started to sprint wildly and, we could see, had not trained to run the 26 miles 385 yards of this marathon let alone run it on such a warm day. Sprinting when they should have been walking, they wasted an enormous amount of energy unnecessarily.

Job hunting is rarely a sprint. Especially, for mid and senior level professionals, it is more like a marathon. Too often, people hear the cannon go off and the race begin and they thrash around wildly, wasting energy like the people did in my marathon and then struggle for way too long.

They are ill-prepared, have failed to train adequately and, as a result, are forced to settle for a job that is “less than” what they could have achieved had they taken some time to prepare for a longer race.

It is not enough to have “a positive attitude”  …  although a positive attitude is good to have. After five or six times when you aren’t called back for second interviews, being positive in the face of conflicting information (lots of rejections) is deluding oneself. You need help!


Be honest with yourself. Do you need help?
© The Big Game Hunter, Inc. Asheville, NC  2008, 2016

The Box Part 2

A few weeks ago, I wrote an article called, “The Box,” that spoke about how each of us is conditioned to conform. I spoke of the conditioning in the classroom: a

Sit still. Regurgitate facts. Get good grades or else.”

“Or else, you won’t get into a good college.”

“Or else you won’t get a good job.”

“Or else . . . “

 

A few weeks ago, I found myself confined to another box . . . not one from the school system, yet one very familiar to me . . .and with walls that were pressing in on me.

Although many of you think of me as a headhunter because of my long time career in executive search, I have spent many evenings the past 6 months in coach training and many days coaching people to be more successful in their lives and in their careers.

In addition, I have been working on launching a new membership website for job hunters that has required that I learn new skills, hire people to do things for me and stretch myself in ways that have caused me to face challenges.

After a quick start with the new technology, I got to point where I needed to hire people to edit a lot of the videos I’ve created over the past few years to make them more usable for my subscribers.

I asked a few friends for referrals but they were too expensive by a lot. Soon, I found people offshore willing to work for $2 per hour but I couldn’t get myself to take action.

I kept remembering my mother’s voice, “They’re going to cheat you.” And

Consciously, I knew they might cheat me out of $6 in total but that was enough to leave me frozen in place.

No amount of logic was getting me to take action.

I wanted to move forward but I was completely immobilized with fear.

So as often happens, I started to construct some good excuses for the launch delay.

“I need to work on some marketing first before the launch,” was the most common one.

And then came a Tuesday night class just a few weeks ago.

Our class is done by phone and we students coach one another each week as part of the training.

I was sitting on the couch in my office as my coach for the night began.

“Of all the actions where you are a bit stuck or not getting the results you want, which one is the one you think is most important for us to improve on now?”

My heart raced.

The membership site. I need to hire people and I need to learn how to enter the content into the site. It’s a completely different way of doing things than I have had to use on any other site I’ve created.”

This is a great opportunity for us to use a technique called “replay the moment.” It’s kind of like instant replay in sports. We’re going to slow down the action to see what is happening for you.”

Cool.”

And it’s important that you maintain ‘judgment free awareness.’ ”  To translate that for non-coaches, “Don’t beat yourself up. Just notice what is going on for you.”

So, in the last week, can you recall a moment from the last week or two when you faced this challenge?”

I told her about how I was trying to hire a freelancer and couldn’t bring myself to place the order. And, even if I had placed the order, I couldn’t figure out where to load the content on the new site so that it would be structured and ordered properly for members.

Do you notice any physical sensations? Which is most intense for you?”

I could feel my chest become tight as pressure built up.

Now all I want you to do is feel the pressure for 30 seconds.”

And it was during that 30 second period that I remembered something.

I was 8 years old and playing catcher in the little league.

The winning runner was on 3rd. One out. I talked to the pitcher whose nickname was “Bug.”

The plan was to pitch the batter up and in.

Bug went into the windup and threw a ball belt high and in the middle of the plate. The batter turned and bunted.

I saw the runner coming from 3rd base as the ball rolled approximately two feet.

And I stood there not moving.

The winning run scored. Game over.

I heard the manager yell at me. I saw the disappointment and scorn on my teammates’ faces.

My box was built and now it was playing out yet again.

Releasing that memory was energizing.

Since, I’ve placed orders for video edits and started to load podcasts and articles. Today, there more than 100pieces of content on the site, another 75 video edits have been ordered and I believe I can launch in early May 2016.

Coaching can make a difference.

Bad coaching like that my manager didn’t give me to remind me of what to do, and good coaching to awaken a memory and learn to manage it by noticing it and acting anyway.

What’s holding you back and who can you ask to help you with it?

 

© The Big Game Hunter, Inc. Asheville, NC  2016

 

Jeff Altman, The Big Game Hunter has been an executive recruiter and coach, helping people play their professional and personal games BIG for what seems like 100 years.

I will be launching JobSearchCoachingHQ.com in May, 2016. Sign up in the box in the right column to be notified when it is ready to go live.

Connect with me and follow The Big Game Hunter, Inc. on LinkedIn.

Listing All Those Temp or Consulting Assignments

Have you been a temp or consultant? Do you have lots of assignments that you need to list on your resume? 

Jeff Altman, The Big Game Hunter has been a career coach and recruiter for what seems like one hundred years.

Follow him at The Big Game Hunter, Inc. on LinkedIn for more articles, videos and podcasts than what are offered here and jobs he is recruiting for.

Visit http://www.TheBigGameHunter.us. There’s a lot more advice there.

Connect with me on LinkedIn

Pay what you want for my books about job search

Subscribe to TheBigGameHunterTV on YouTube  for advice about job hunting and hiring. Like videos, share and comment.

Trying to hire someone? Email me at JeffAltman@TheBigGameHunter.us

Do you need more in-depth coaching? Join my Coaching program.

Want to ask me questions via phone, Skype or Facetime? Have your job search questions answered.

What Would You Do If A Peer Is Not Performing Up To Standards

Jeff Altman, The Big Game Hunter answers a viewer’s question about what they would do if they had a peer who is not performing up to standards. 

Jeff Altman, The Big Game Hunter has been a career coach and recruiter for what seems like one hundred years.

Follow him at The Big Game Hunter, Inc. on LinkedIn for more articles, videos and podcasts than what are offered here and jobs he is recruiting for.

Visit http://www.TheBigGameHunter.us. There’s a lot more advice there.

Connect with me on LinkedIn

Pay what you want for my books about job search

Subscribe to TheBigGameHunterTV on YouTube  for advice about job hunting and hiring. Like videos, share and comment.

Trying to hire someone? Email me at JeffAltman@TheBigGameHunter.us

Do you need more in-depth coaching? Join my Coaching program.

Want to ask me questions via phone, Skype or Facetime? Have your job search questions answered.

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