Get the Job: Be Prepared for 12 Hiring Manager Movie Types

Bring movie popcorn to your next job interview because it’s getting crazy in the world of employment.

There is an art to resume writing and interviewing, but there is also a lot of gameplay in getting a job. You first have to beat the ATS and get in the door. Once you land an interview, you have to jump through hoops in face-to-face games.

In writing resumes for clients, I’ve heard amazing and insane stories about hiring managers. There are some strange developments in the interview process. Applicants now have to be prepared for the most challenging interviews from guessing their own salary to detailing their worst qualities.

If you’re applying for jobs and getting called for interviews, be prepared for the best and the worst in hiring managers.

Top 12 Hiring Manager Movie Types

 

  1. Snow White and the Seven Salaries: The hiring manager who makes you guess at the company’s budget for the salary. “What is your salary history and how much do you want to be paid?” This is becoming the norm in the interview process. If you suggest an amount too low, you will be underpaid and possibly won’t be able to pay your bills. If you suggest an amount too high, you won’t get the job. Aim to apply to businesses that have an actual budget already set for the position. So when you walk through the door, you know the salary range upfront. Remember: asking about your salary history is illegal in Massachusetts and soon other states may adopt similar legislation.
  2. One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest: The hiring manager bad-mouths the workplace, the owner, and the employees during the first interview. Run.
  3. Rear Window: Several candidates are looking over your shoulder because the hiring manager has five candidates waiting together in the lobby for the same job. Why? The hiring manager does not value your time or the job you’re going to be doing. The pay is going to be low and respect for your work even lower. Run.
  4. Pulp Fiction: There is no real job offer, but the hiring manager needs ideas how to do his/her own job. How would you handle x, y, and z? How would you handle our marketing? How do you currently make a profit? I need your feedback on our website and financials. Don’t give away too much information in the interview. If they really want to know how to do their job, they should hire you. Run.
  5. It’s a Wonderful Life: The hiring manager tells you how perfect the workplace is with life/work balance but Glassdoor tells a very different story from anonymous employees. Do your homework on Glassdoor before applying for any job. There is a degree of dysfunction in every workplace. Be prepared for less than a wonderful life.
  6. Schindler’s List: The hiring manager exposes the firing process, a high-turnover rate, and mentions something concerning the ethnicity of a current employee in the interview. Run.
  7. Jaws: When a hiring manager tells you too much about the drama in his/her own personal life including divorce, don’t fall into the trap of exposing your own private life. You’re asked to list your worst qualities – twice. It’s a trick that will cost you the job and any personal information will be used against you in the workplace. Run.
  8. Sunset Boulevard: The hiring manager asks your age and talks about ageism in the workplace. Two years ago, a major film studio’s hiring manager asked me my age and advised me that they don’t hire anyone over the age of 38 to work on the studio lot. Really? Ageism is real . . . and it’s illegal for a hiring manager to quiz you about your age or talk about a certain age as a requirement to be hired. Be prepared to have your age insulted by someone younger than you or older than you. Run.
  9. Trouble in Paradise: The hiring manager says the job requirements are very specific but after you start the job, you learn you’re now replacing multiple part-time employees and doing the job of ten to save the company money. Run.
  10. All About Eve: The hiring manager warns you that the entire job is about playing politics and a moody owner who screams at employees. You’re warned not to take it personally but to play along. Everyone is at peace only when the owner is out of town. Run.
  11. Touch of Evil: The hiring manager first has you sign a non-disclosure statement about their business practices before being interviewed. Red-flag warning! What does the business have to hide? Run.
  12. Duck Soup: The hiring manager introduces you to some other employees during your interview and the process is filled with laughter and smiles. They might be zany characters, but at least the environment looks like fun.

If you’re applying for a job, the best interview involves a clear salary range, detailed job responsibilities, strong communication, and a peaceful work environment.

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The Fatal Attraction of Spaghetti Marketing 101

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SPAGHETTI MARKETING 101

It might look like a scene out of Fatal Attraction, but this is a marketing scene happening in start-up businesses every day. Boiling the life out of your ideas and flinging marketing ideas against the wall without a structured master plan will end in you burning out your audience.

Two years ago, I had a client who wanted to try everything. He wouldn’t listen to sound advice that works. He didn’t want to work on a structured business plan. He didn’t want to build a marketing plan. His budget changed by the week. He was excited about every idea that came to him in the middle of the night. We developed a following but he quickly discovered that throwing spaghetti at a wall does not work long-term. His followers started to disappear. His subscribers started to unsubscribe. And it seemed as though it was capitalism at its worst. With the audience disappearing, the discounts seemed desperate and last ditch effort to grow his revenue rather than deliver on value to potential customers.

“Give me your money!” That was his constant approach. It didn’t work.

Finally, when the audience disappeared, we discussed a re-design of his website and a complete re-launch. We did it methodically after creating a business development plan and a marketing plan.

If you really want to be in the game, you have to create structured plans. You have to be willing to listen to your team or they shouldn’t be on your team. If you’re not serving the audience or losing your followers and subscribers, there’s a reason.

STOP.

Re-evaluate your marketing approach and examine your analytics, review statistics and conversion rates, track what worked and what failed. Then, you must be willing to readjust in order to rebuild. Remember, there’s more than one way to do marketing. Collaboration can lead to success.

Never react with an instant NO to new ideas.

My client finally listened and we built a base, rebuilt organically on top of that base, and people noticed. It was quieter. His assets were more colorful with a thoughtful, pleasing approach instead of screaming at the audience with exclamation marks. It wasn’t all about discounts that seemed to be like an infomercial yelling at his customers to give him more money. As a result, his quieter authority grew over time. He interacted with his audience, asked for feedback, and incorporated changes into his plan.

What changed from his first creation compared to his second re-launch?

He boiled away spaghetti marketing and started listening to alternative approaches. He was a leader who wouldn’t get out of his own way. Sometimes, we need to listen to everyone from the receptionist to the janitor so we can do a better job meeting the needs of the audience. If you’re unwilling to receive feedback from your audience, it shows.

What value are you offering me?

What can your product do for me?

Why do you care about me?

Tell me why I need to believe in you.

The personal pronouns you use in your marketing matter far more than discounts. Connect with your audience in a personal way.

The discounts he had offered were fickle at best. None of the end dates stuck – they were always continued endlessly. He saw it as a way to make money fast. But it backfired. And it cost him business and respect.

The consumer audience is smart. If you’re in it only to boost your bottom line revenue, the audience will know and reject the offering instantly.

With only seconds to capture a potential customer, your website, social media accounts, and emails should be original and on point. Now is not the time to guess or repeat the same message over and over again without stellar results.

The value you deliver today will be appreciated tomorrow. Most importantly, show that you value your client’s time.

Email your subscribers with new content; don’t eblast or ebomb them every single day. Personally, I’ve unsubscribed from 12 eblast lists in the last 30 days. Why?

With the first group, I didn’t subscribe and they added my email to their list without permission. Be familiar with the law and compliance. Furthermore, always seek permission before you add an email to your list.

With the second group, they’ve sent me too many emails that start with “oops, I made a mistake.” Their mistake was trying to make me click two days in a row on the same pitch to give them money. That’s what I call a scam.

Finally, the third reason I unsubscribed was because the emails didn’t offer me new information but only seemed to clutter and spam my email account. Do you want to be perceived as SPAM? If your email marketing approach is being viewed as spam or junk mail demanding money from potential clients, it’s not working. You’re now demeaning your product and your company’s reputation.

Oftentimes, less is more: fewer emails with new content have a more positive impact over time. Put an effort into every message you send to your followers and subscribers.

In every job from a journalist to a marketer, I’ve been a storyteller. Take them back to the story. What is the story of your company? What is the story of your product? What is your story? Tell me a powerful story and make me a believer. Stories connect more than ever today but deliver it inside of a real, structured master marketing plan.

One of the biggest mistakes I’ve witnessed in starting up a new business is not putting pen to paper with an overall plan that your team can see. I can’t say it enough: write it down so the entire team climbs aboard the same train.

MASTER PLAN: Start with a solid one-year master plan that you develop with a team approach:

  • MISSION: Establish the company’s vision and mission with your marketing team.
  • BRANDING: Become an influencer to establish and expand the company’s footprint in your industry.
  • BUSINESS PLAN: Design a one-year business plan with your team listing goal markers. WRITE IT DOWN and distribute to your team.
  • MARKETING PLAN: Create a detailed step-by-step marketing plan with your team but infuse some fun into it. WRITE IT DOWN and distribute to your team.
  • MARKETING BUDGET: Detail a marketing and advertising budget with your team and show exactly where you plan to invest money. WRITE IT DOWN and distribute to your team.
  • EVENT SCHEDULES and AD CAMPAIGNS: Create event schedules and ad campaigns with your team that focus on topics and storytelling. WRITE IT DOWN and distribute to your team.
  • EDITORIAL CALENDAR: Create an editorial calendar for the entire year.
  • PRESS RELEASES: Schedule press releases at regular intervals using keywords. If the press releases aren’t appearing in Google Alerts, re-evaluate the way you’re releasing information.
  • TESTIMONIALS: Query your current customers for honest feedback and testimonials. Feature those testimonials on your website.
  • EMAIL LISTS: Email once a month or once a week only with original content. Query your email list audience at regular intervals.
  • ANALYSIS: Review your written business development plan and marketing plan. Analyze what has been working and what has failed.
  • READJUST: Listen to your audience, listen to your entire team, and be willing to readjust.

If you’re not willing to listen or alter the plan along the way, your back tire is going to spinning in the mud. To get movement and traction, you need to take structured actions instead of reactions by the day. Remember, history will repeat itself if you don’t make needed changes that focus on an organized, structured strong plan.

Now, have fun marketing!

5 Reasons to Invest Money in Your Entrepreneurial Business

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“You need to spend money to make money.”

– Playwright Titus Maccius Plautus (c. 254 – 184 BC)

The playwright Plautus was most likely referencing the theatre with this quote, but it’s true to your own business, no matter its size. You must spend money to make money. Any business that doesn’t invest in its team and marketing assets will only hurt its bottom line profit.

Invest in Your Team and It Will Show in the End Product

If you want to play in the world of entrepreneurship and business, you have to look the part to build a start-up. No one will take you seriously if you don’t provide the quality of expertise you pretend to offer. That applies to every niche and attempting to build a footprint in every industry. Every element from marketing to design matters to the audience. Perception of authenticity is critical.

5 Reasons to Invest Money in Your Business

It doesn’t cost a fortune to create a successful entrepreneurial business. If you’re smart and savvy about your investments, you’ll see profit instead of losses. But you must invest money to show profits.

  1. Professionalism. It’s professional to pay your team. Do not barter or attempt to trade services with friends or new potential clients to deliver the bare minimum in results. This is weak and embarrassing. Word travels quickly. If you have no capital to invest in your own business, no one will want to be in business with you either. Set a budget and pay for all professional services rendered or consider getting a day job while you save money to invest. Either be professional or don’t start yet.
  2. Audience Respects Advertising Dollars. During the start-up of your business, you need to set a budget to invest money in advertising. Find your audience. Do your research. Meet them in their environment and gain their respect. Build early clientele by word-of-mouth and then start investing in advertisements. Do not use kickbacks, referral fees, or any other shady (potentially illegal) technique to build clientele. Build your business the respectable way.
  3. Clients Want an Original Experience. Invest in an original experience for your clients. Set a budget so website specialists or consultants can help you create and execute your vision. When a potential client sees an offering of a special experience, they’ll want to be a part of that experience. They want to belong to something extraordinary and life changing.
  4. Pay for Training or Pay for Your Team to Be Trained. This is the reason bigger businesses have on-going training programs for their employees. But smaller businesses need to invest in training to remain competitive. It is important to either take professional-grade training or pay for your team to be trained in using professional programs. Potential clients notice a novice and won’t engage in your business.
  5. New Products Offer New Potential. Invest in changing the business offering to grow your audience. With every expansion or addition of a new product, give it a new name with a heightened experience. Maybe you add a new product, a VIP offering, or a Master Class to help clients. Always consider the market and get feedback from the customer. What do they need? What do they want? Consider how your business can answer those needs. Adjust your offer and deliver.

Start-ups are very difficult. The truth is that most start-ups fail for a variety of reasons. Lack of capital investment is one of the biggest reasons start-ups fail. Investing and reinvesting profits are critical to finding success.

If you do your research, develop a service or product that the market needs, invest in your business, and adhere to a budget, you may show a profit and find success. Every stepping stone, no matter how small, can lead to a bigger stone and potentially a mountain of success. Think positively. Be smart and proactive. And most importantly, invest financially in your business.

Customer Service Has Left the Building: 4 Ways to Build or Restore Reputation

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“The road to success is always under construction.” – Arnold Palmer

Whether it’s buying food, goods, or services, everyone encounters the best and worst in customer service on a daily basis. In many cases, less customer service has become the norm.

Think about it. Rate the last 10 businesses where you spent money. Were you happy with the service? Were you treated with respect? Will you spend money at that business again?

While actual business owners and leaders may care about customer service, many employees either don’t care or haven’t been trained in client care.

REMINDER: Customer Service is Everything to a Business

Without customer service, a business is nothing. Every business needs to keep their clients and grow client base to maintain or grow and increase profitability. It may seem obvious, but it’s not obvious to everyone.

Explore some common customer complaints.

Customer Complaint: Promotions Are Not Honored, Inaccurate, or Prove to be Bait and Switch

In recent cases, discount promotion deals were sent via email and then not honored.

A coffee chain recently offered an email and website discount promotion at all store locations, but it was not honored at all locations. The deal: if a customer purchased a certain coffee drink between the hours of 2:00 and 5:00 pm, the customer was supposed to receive a discounted drink. The offer was only available for three days. For a customer who attempted to use that offer during two of those days, two different franchise locations had excuses why the discount wasn’t available between those hours. Both blamed computer glitches and the timing offered in print. Confusing information offered by different locations meant inconsistent training. Only a phone call to headquarters rectified the situation by offering the customer a free drink. Problem solved.

In another situation, a discount promotion was offered by a bowling alley for Sunday bowling. There was no time restriction in the email or on their website for the half-price discount offer. However, the franchise business declined to honor the email discount even though the same offer was listed in print on their website. Employees claimed the discount was not as advertised in print. Instead, it was only available after 6:00 pm. Why were the email and website discount offered to the public if they weren’t going to be honored? That was bait and switch. A complaint was filed with the manager of the location but it was met with hostility from both employees and the manager. Problem not solved.

How employees deal with customer service represents the spirit of the company, whether intentional or not.

Response Reminder: Make certain print advertisements are accurate and all employees are informed of promotions.

Consistency in service is critical to success and client retention.

Customer Complaint: Poor Attention to Health Details by Employees

In a recent case, when a table became available at a sushi restaurant, the host took a wet towel, dropped it on the floor, picked it up from the dirty floor, and wiped down a dining table with the same towel. He didn’t care about blatant disregard for customer health. In California, sushi cafes have become fast food restaurants with a “move them in, move them out” approach. If the sushi owner knew this had happened, he would have been shocked because he built a chain of sushi restaurants on his name and reputation. 

In another situation, a man took a friend to a very expensive chain restaurant. While they were eating, a cockroach crawled across the table. He complained. The waiter was indifferent but offered a free dessert from the menu. If the waiter was really thinking about customer service, he should have made the entire meal free and apologized profusely. The man vowed never to return to the restaurant again and told his entire network of friends and relatives the story. It was less about the cockroach and more about receiving no apology and poor customer service. As a result, the business lost not only his business but future business from his entire network. 

Response Reminder: Most often, unhappy customers simply want to hear an apology and the words, “I’m sorry.” 

Do not let pride get in the way of an apology. It’s smarter to apologize than to insist on being right.

Customer Complaint: Incomplete Work Yet the Customer Paid In Full

In a recent case, a car repairman charged $2,000 for work on a car. The customer paid the bill in full believing the work had been completed. The next day the car broke down again. When the car was taken to a different repairman, an inspection showed that parts were not replaced and the car work was not completed as promised. When a phone call was made to the original owner of the repair shop to inform him, he apologized and promised to do the work at no further cost. That’s smart customer service. 

Response Reminder: The owner or manager of a business needs to stand behind their work and make the situation right.

The faster a business rights the ship, the faster the ship will float.

Customer Complaint: One-Minute Disqualifier

Things that happen in less than one minute can disqualify someone from being a long-term client. Every customer should be served with respect. It’s an interpretation of the intention of the vendor that can result in losing customers forever.

Working in a service industry, there are a variety of stories about customer service. Sadly, you hear more about poor customer service than good customer service. 

Customer service is about fairness, balance, and listening.

It’s easy to win a client. When apologies are made to customers, there’s forgiveness.

It’s also easy to lose a client. When customers are bad-mouthed or called liars, businesses lose repeat business for life. Word travels like lightening about poor customer service

Excellent customer service is critical to a company’s success.

4 Ways to Build or Restore Reputation with Customer Service:

1. The customer is always right.

Arguing with a customer will destroy a business. Never make the customer look bad. If a business apologizes to a customer and makes the situation right, most likely he or she will remain a repeat customer. Be prompt about responding the moment a complaint is voiced. Don’t give a customer the runaround or make them struggle to right a wrong. Deal with the issue, make it right, resolve it, and move on.

2. The needs of the customer must be fulfilled.

If a business promises to fulfill a customer’s need, that is the only acceptable result. Anything short of meeting a product or service promised will result in losing customers.

All businesses are created to serve the needs of the customer. Serving the need should be more important than greed or cashing in on sales. In order to have a viable business, the customer’s needs must be served. Without a customer, there would be no business. Therefore, customer service must be the number one priority in any business model.

3. Train employees on customer service expectations.

The reputation of the business depends on training employees to be informed on the details of products, honoring promotions, how to listen to customers, and how to treat customers with respect. If there’s no training, there’s a false hope of offering excellent customer service.

Training in resolving issues immediately by embracing positive customer service will set a business apart from competitors.

4. Do something unexpected and free for clients.

For every client, I’ve always done something for free that went above and beyond the basic expectation. It is either a small expenditure or offers something that makes their experience easier. Every client wants to feel special. Does it make a difference? Yes, it does. It creates repeat customers and positive word-of-mouth about a business. Find a balance that won’t deplete profit but will also show customers the business cares more about a client than a profit.

Customers always think about where they spend their money. So think like the customer and ask yourself some important questions to assess your own needs. Where do I shop? Where do I eat? Where do I spend my money for services? Why do I become a repeat customer? What is the experience I’m looking for in buying food, goods, or services? Would I spend money at my own business for the customer experience? What does the customer experience when placing an order at my business? Walk through the paces and see how you’re treated to make assessments.

Every business must rate their own client care and reassess customer service regularly. If a business markets itself in providing excellent customer service, follow through on that promise. Market the best service and deliver it. That approach makes all the difference between success and failure.

BOTTOM LINE: A customer will always go where they feel they get their money’s worth and someone cares about their personal needs over profit. If you welcome customers into your world with kindness and make them feel appreciated, it’s possible to create a faithful client for life.

Job Search: 75% of Applicant Resumes Thrown Out by Computer

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ONLINE JOB SEARCHES LAST MONTHS TO YEARS

If you’re unemployed, a job search that lasts many months to a year is a critical financial disaster. You might be forced to live on credit cards or ask relatives for help. Even worse, you may end up homeless.

Think it can’t happen to you? Guess again. It’s happening to professionals in every age group in their 20’s, 30’s, 40’s, 50’s, and 60’s. Many of them are college-educated professionals who want to work and refuse to apply for food stamps, welfare, or public assistance. They have hope to be hired full-time.

When you start researching the job market, you quickly discover it might not be your skills or experience. Most likely, it’s a computer game that you’re losing.

When you consider that studies (Forbes) show 75% of resumes are automatically thrown out by the Applicant Tracking System (ATS) due to keywords and formatting, it’s incredible how much control the ATS has over employment.

When you can no longer receive unemployment benefits, you’re not even counted as unemployed. So the unemployment statistics aren’t telling the truth about the crisis of employment in today’s world.

A huge section of the unemployed will never know why they’re losing the game of employment. Eventually, they give up on getting a job. It seems like an easy option to give up but it’s the worst option. When submitting your online resume results in no response, no interview, and no job offer, it becomes frustrating but it’s not the end of the hunt.

FREELANCING CAN BE LIKE FREE FALLING WITHOUT GUARANTEED INCOME

Applicants, who are struggling in getting a full-time job, turn to working freelance or taking several part-time jobs on Craigslist. But Craigslist jobs are often a crapshoot. Sometimes you’re paid on Craigslist jobs; sometimes you’re not. You’re working without an employment agreement. There’s no contract and no guaranteed paycheck. Even if you’re promised a regular paycheck, sometimes that doesn’t materialize. Instead, you find yourself being paid less than minimum wage. You’re not even reimbursed for travel fees on the job or out-of-pocket expenses.

“Can you drive across town, pick this up for me, and pay for it? I’ll reimburse you later.” Later never arrives. “And about your paycheck. It’s in the mail.”

It may be illegal, but if you signed a non-disclosure agreement (NDA) about the company’s business practices just to get the job, good luck in getting any remuneration. Those NDA requirements are becoming more common on Craigslist jobs, too. If you don’t sign upfront and agree to keep your mouth shut about illegal business practices, you won’t get the job.

BY 2020, 40% OF AMERICANS WILL BE FREELANCE 

The Intuit 2020 Report predicts 40% of Americans workers will be freelance by the year 2020. That statistic was from a few years ago, so the statistic has probably increased and more than half of American workers will be “entrepreneurs” working freelance soon. Sadly, most of them will fail in their entrepreneurial attempt. It’s hard to make a living freelance unless you have a solid business plan, solid skills, an incredible sales funnel on your website, and a steady stream of paying clients plus money to invest in advertising.

Instead of relying on tiny, random paychecks, you want a real job that provides a steady paycheck and benefits. So don’t give up.

CORPORATE HUMAN RESOURCE DEPARTMENTS AND RESUMES

In talking with many Human Resource representatives and hiring managers, they all agree on one thing: they are overwhelmed with bad resumes and only a handful of the thousands of resumes are actually reviewed by a human. This is the reason they use the Applicant Tracking System (ATS) software to save time and weed out candidates who don’t seem qualified on paper. If some of the good candidates are deleted due to poor formatting, so be it. They don’t care. That’s not their concern. Hiring the best candidate is their only goal so they can move to the next job opening or finish other work.

JOB BOARD INDUSTRY

The job board industry needs a good stir. Applicants sometimes spend hours resubmitting and retyping all of their resume information into a single online job application. Then they receive silence.

Applying for employment through the old job board industry leads to so many questions that go unanswered. Was the resume rejected by a computer? Did a human review the resume? Does the job even exist? Was the job already filled internally? Was this job posting just a way to fulfill a requirement to advertise a job? Am I wasting my time on the job boards? If you’re spending weeks to months applying for jobs without even a phone call interview, you’ve answered your own question.

CRAIGSLIST GLUT OF RESUMES

Even Craigslist employers tell me they receive 200+ resumes in the first hours a job posting online, even if it’s an unpaid position, but few of the resumes stand out. They select a few people to interview and delete the rest from their inbox. Craigslist does not use the ATS, so they rely on looking at the subject lines to decide whether they’ll click to open the cover letter and resume. Craigslist employers say each online resume email they open only receives a scroll that lasts a few seconds. Their goal is to fill the job quickly with the most qualified warm body.

The worst part about Craigslist jobs is working without an employment contract or agreement. Oftentimes Craigslist jobs are postings from smaller companies so it’s unpredictable and often short-term. Lots of individuals, small companies, and big companies advertise for unpaid interns on Craigslist. Don’t do it. HR hiring managers will tell you not to list those unpaid internships on your resume because they don’t consider them to be real work experience. Unless you’re a college student, unpaid internships in your 30’s – 50’s are a complete waste of time even for re-training purposes. Furthermore, many of those unpaid internships are illegal because you are doing the work of what would be full-time paid employees. It’s a way for a company to not pay you for your work and retain a higher profit for the business.

Other Craigslist employers have told me that many job listings aren’t all real as lots of listings are simply used to promote a company or startup that needs more clients and paying customers.

HOW MANY APPLICATIONS TO GET A JOB OFFER?

Once you enter the job search arena, everyone else is more than willing to share a statistic to prepare you for failure. They’ll tell you: For every 100 applications you fill out online, you will get 10 interviews (phone, video, or in-person), and only 1 job offer. That may be the rule of thumb they hope for, but I think the stat is outdated due to the ATS. Honestly, I think the statistic is far worse, especially for people who don’t know how to format their resume properly. There are so many people who have struggled for years with no interviews, despite the fact that they’re spending an enormous amount of time applying for jobs and they have a rich work history.

Bottom line: good candidates are being left behind as a result of the ATS.

There may be discouraging hiring statistics, but you can start getting interviews. Everyone who has ever volunteered or worked in a paying job has skills, but it’s all in the display and wording of your resume.

5 WAYS TO GET JOB INTERVIEWS IN DAYS OR WEEKS: 

RESEARCH AND EMBRACE JOB INDUSTRY DISRUPTERS

The businesses that are disrupting any industry are actually helping everyone by exposing the truth and leading to a fast track of information.

  1. RESEARCH ATS. Do your research on the current ATS systems and find out what kind of resume formatting the computer will accept. For example, I don’t recommend you use a resume format in PDF even if the online system says it will accept PDF. I also don’t advise using columns, tables, colors, pictures, or icons. The paragraph and bullet point approaches work, but don’t indent them. Use of keywords is also critical and every resume must be tailored to fit the job description. Be careful where you do your research online because a lot of the resume information on paid and free websites is completely outdated. If the resume looks too fancy or hard to read, you’re wasting your money.
  2. REZI.io Fast track your employment by visit Rezi.io for resume tips and templates that apply to recent college graduates and applicants of any age. It was created for students, but it applies to ALL ages. Rezi offers resume formats that beat the ATS. Follow Rezi on Facebook, Twitter, and Reddit. Rezi has disrupted the job search and resume industry. Be smart and get started with Rezi.
  3. JOBSCAN.co Visit Jobscan.co for resume templates and a free ATS scan. Find out how your resume rates when compared to the jobs you’re applying. You’ll be given a percentage to see how you match the job description. How will the computer rank your resume for a real HR department? Will you be kicked out of the system or will your resume be seen? If you receive a low-percentage match, you’ll want to work on your resume. JobScan has disrupted the ATS software and job search industry.
  4. ZipRECRUITER.com Submit your application to jobs on ZipRecruiter.com. Create a resume that the computer can read and accept. Many of my clients have experienced the highest success rate through ZipRecruiter’s one-click apply that doesn’t eliminate candidates with an ATS system. ZipRecruiter also notifies you when an employer has read your resume and if they read your resume a second time. That feedback is critical to the application process. ZipRecruiter has disrupted the stale job board industry and they’re helping applicants get hired.
  5. PERSONALITY TESTS. Do your research before taking online personality tests that are required as part of the online application process. In most of the tests, there are only two correct answers amongst a sea of vague multiple-choice answers. Always choose Strongly Agree or Strongly Disagree. Any other answer will be an incorrect answer and your personality will fail at getting you an interview.

The job search is one big, elaborate computer game. It’s time to play the game to win. Use action words on your resume, use keywords, and access the best information in today’s market.

When you get a job using the above advice, send me an email through Bloom Grow Media. I’d love to hear your success story. My goal is to get people hired. Everyone who wants to work should be able to break through the system and be offered a job.

Marketing Yourself When You Are the Brand

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MARKETING CHANGES WITH TECHNOLOGY

Marketing tactics always seem to be shifting along with the advance of technology, but certain elements of marketing will never change.

Dating back to the age of the caveman, individuals have been marketing themselves.

Who was the strongest caveman?

Which caveman provided the most food?

Which caveman produced the most children?

Which caveman could you barter with for excellent handmade tools?

There were certain cavemen who garnered the most attention for different reasons. As a result, they became leaders in their communities. It’s the same in today’s world.

STATIC ELEMENTS OF MARKETING

Basic marketing elements stay the same.

The product or service MUST:

  • Fulfill a need. Establish a basic need and fulfill it. If you don’t fulfill a customer’s need, you may be spinning your wheels and working at something that doesn’t sell or serves no needs.
  • Reach the widest audience. Find a way to spread the word and create the most attention whether it’s in the community or internationally. You need followers and you need an email list. Always build a target audience.
  • Generate sales. Find a way to turn everyone into a client as they wander through your Internet neighborhood.

MARKETING YOURSELF AS A BRAND

If you’re the face of the brand, be smart. The basic elements of marketing remain the same but you have to convince the audience that you’re authentic and have something valuable to offer. When the “sell” is focused on a person as a brand, you need a powerful story to help catapult your story in order to profit.

  1. Appearance matters when you are the brand. Be aware of lighting, photography, video, and audio. Be aware of your pacing. Before publishing any video or print pictures, ask for feedback from professionals. Family and friends will try to be nice and say it’s great. Find a critical eye to tell you the truth.
  2. Be consistent in message and content. Your original content should be consistent. Be very careful what articles you share and who you retweet. If you’re all over the place without focus, you’ll simply confuse the audience. If you launch on one message, you might have to refocus and launch on a second message. If you’re sharing visual assets, make certain they match the brand. If you’re going for a clean look, don’t start cluttering the look. Be consistent.
  3. Appropriate copywriting. The choice of words in any written message is critical. Increase your footprint in an industry by offering take-away information with every post. If you’re using quotes to reinforce your brand, choose wisely.

A consistent, strong message will attract the right audience.

Ladies, Keep Your Day Job: 4 Ways To Return to Full-Time Work

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LADIES, DON’T QUIT YOUR DAY JOB

This is a serious message for women: If you’re married with children or have a baby on the way, don’t quit your day job. After a gap on your resume of a few years or more, it will be extremely challenging to return to the current level of your career. Even worse, it may be nearly impossible to return to the full-time workforce at all.

Bottom line: If a woman gives up her career, she limits her power to make life choices. Financial independence is critical to everyone’s future.

MEN ARE EXPECTED TO BE PROVIDERS AND BREADWINNERS

Most men work full-time throughout their lives whether they’re employed by a corporation, small business, or self-employed as an entrepreneur. Unless they’re born into automatic wealth, men are expected to be the providers and breadwinners for their spouses and families.

As a result, most men build their careers from their 20’s to their 60’s with a solid retirement and/or 401K. The majority of men use stepping stones to title jump their way up to the top of the corporate ladder or end up owning their own corporations.

WOMEN ARE EXPECTED TO MAKE A CHOICE BETWEEN CAREER AND CHILDREN

When children are born, most women are forced to make a choice between becoming a caretaker or financial independence. Either they become working moms and hire childcare or they take a few years up to a decade or more out of the workforce to raise their children. Most often, the women in relationships serve as the primary caregivers. When choices are made to put careers on hold and step out of the full-time workforce, it alters a woman’s future forever. Sometimes women are fortunate and find part-time work, become consultants, or string together freelance work. But the choices made to step out of the workforce for any lengthy period of time put future financial independence at risk.

WHOEVER CONTROLS THE MONEY, HOLDS THE POWER

Single women and single mothers know how important it is to be financially independent. Single ladies work their way up the career ladder and eventually, many of them end up with higher salaries and a window office.

Married women think when they make a decision to stay home to raise the children, it won’t be a problem leaving the workforce because they’ll go back to a job in a few years with a matching or higher income. When a decade passes, getting back into the workforce will be challenging. That income will also dissipate with the choice to leave the workforce.

WOMEN ARE TOUGHEST ON WOMEN WHEN APPLYING FOR JOBS

Most often, it’s female executives, who didn’t stay home with their children, didn’t marry, or divorced, who will be the hardest on mothers trying to get back into the workforce. If you’ve been out of the workforce for a few years to a decade or more, female executives and female human resource representatives are the toughest on women who stepped out of the workforce. I have no idea why but I hear the stories over and over again about women being tough on women. There’s very little overt camaraderie between working female execs and non-working females. Most working women do not respect non-working women trying to get back into the workforce. For women who have been out of the workforce, men are far easier to interview with than women. Unfortunately, women don’t get to choose who does the interviewing and I’ve heard the cruelest comments and judgments come from female interviewers.

REALITY: AGEISM IS REAL ESPECIALLY FOR WOMEN

Your age matters. It may be against the law to reference your age, but fewer corporate interviewers seem to care about the law. An applicant’s age is being referenced in job interviews regularly by women about women.

One interviewer told a woman interviewing for a job: “I see women trying to reinvent themselves at your age all the time. It’s not going to work. The woman who owns the company is 35 and she’s won’t want to give orders to someone who is older and more experienced than her.”

Another interviewer told a woman interviewing for a job: “We only hire people under the age of 38. Most of them are in their 20’s or early 30’s.”

For some reason, male interviewers ignore referencing a woman’s age directly but may not truly consider a former homemaker as a candidate for full-time work. “You’ve got a great resume but . . . Are you going to be able to keep up with a full-time job? There’s no nap time on the job.”

It’s condescending conversation but it’s happening in interviews.

HOW OLD IS TOO OLD TO BE HIRED?

If you’re over the age of 38 and you’ve been out of the workforce for a while, good luck getting full-time work. It’s going to be challenging. If your age isn’t referenced directly, they’ll reference the gap on your resume. You have a chance at being hired by the right person in the right situation.

If you’re over the age of 45 and you’ve been out of the workforce for several years, best wishes on getting full-time work. It’s going to be difficult. If your age isn’t referenced directly, they’ll tell you that you need retraining or need an overhaul of your resume because the format is outdated. They are basically saying you’re outdated and not going to get the job.

If you’re over the age of 50 and you’ve been out of the workforce for a decade or more, it will be next to impossible to get full-time work. Most likely, your age or the youthful ages of other employees will be referenced. An interviewer will say, “We like to hire recent college graduates.” That’s an age reference. It’s best you start working part-time jobs and freelancing ASAP to rebuild your resume. Starting your own company might be the only way to earn an income.

PREPARE FOR THE WHAT IF’S

What if your spouse is fired, laid-off, or blackballed by an entire industry?

Workplaces can be very political, management can be replaced, or an employee can simply age out. If it costs less to hire someone half an employee’s age, firings can take place. Be prepared to become the breadwinner unexpectedly. It will default to you to help replace your spouse’s salary.

What if your spouse unexpectedly leaves you for another woman and tries to get out providing spousal support and/or child support?

Be prepared for the day when you may be suddenly alone and struggling financially because you haven’t been working or no one will hire you for a decent salary. The “happily ever after” marriage remains a gift but there’s no guarantee anymore. Our world has changed dramatically. The availability of emotional and physical affairs has increased with the progress of technology and the Internet. Even monogamy seems to be discouraged in the media. You can no longer rely on the partnership of marriage or a belief in your spouse to pay the bills. You must take part, earn an income, and contribute or save money for a rainy day.

What if your spouse announces he wants a divorce?

There’s no way to faster financial ruin than divorce. Look at your family’s total income. Now, imagine splitting that amount between two homes. It’s not easy. List all of your expenses. If you think you’ll get $3K to $5K a month in alimony and child support, think again. I personally know women who only receive $300 a month in child support and no alimony. They’re scrambling to find work because they can’t afford housing, food, car insurance, and child expenses on $300 a month. It’s best to keep one foot in the workforce at all times and prepare for a rainy day. If it doesn’t rain, be grateful and create a savings account for yourself.

What if your spouse becomes injured or even worse, dies unexpectedly, will you be able to support yourself and your children?

I have met with so many married unemployed women who have had to face the unexpected death of a spouse. It’s not only earth shattering emotionally, but also financially devastating. The truth is that most women are completely unprepared for an unexpected illness or death of a spouse.

DANCE BACK INTO THE WORKFORCE NOW

Before the bottom of the ship drops out unexpectedly, get back into the workforce now. It’s always easier to be hired for a better job when you’re working full-time. If your kids are out of diapers, figure out a way to make it work. Even if you’re only able to find part-time work, do it so you’re prepared to work full-time when the time comes.

Take action.

Do not stand by and wait for full-time, high-paying job opportunities to fall into your lap.

Do not wait for the phone to ring unexpectedly with a job offer from a friend in your former industry. It won’t happen if you’re off the radar or no longer in touch.

Don’t expect return phone calls from people in your former network.  Loyalty often dies or dissipates when you leave a job. A few years might seem like yesterday to you, but the old adage is true: out of sight, out of mind.

4 WAYS TO GET BACK INTO THE WORKFORCE

  1. Remove Dates from Your Resume. Apply for jobs where your skills matter more than the dates you worked. Eliminate the year you graduated from high school and college, too. If you’re over 38, listing the dates and years of your work experience will only remove you from consideration to be interviewed.
  2. Apply on ZipRecruiter.com. It’s one of the few places where gaps on your resume don’t matter. ZipRecruiter has turned the job board industry upside down by offering a speed dating approach to interviewing. You will absolutely get interviews if you apply through ZipRecruiter.
  3. Overhaul Your Resume. Do your research and redesign your resume. It’s very difficult to beat the ATS (Applicant Tracking System) so you need your resume to show active verbs when listing your accomplishments. Tailor your resume to the job description.
  4. Retrain and Educate Yourself Every Day. Learn new computer programs. Take classes online. Check out free classes on Udemy. Ask friends to teach you how to use apps and design programs. Be a lifelong learner so you can get a job.

Most importantly, you have to show a business that you’re hungry to work. When interviewing for a job, show up ready to start your future.

For more information on getting job interviews, join The PAM Method.