JHCCS-Career Tip of the Day 5/5

Before you go out to look for a new job, it is critical to make your own “wish-list” of what your ideal job is so you will know when you have found it. Your “wish-list” should include everything from company culture and location, to the types of personalities you would most prefer to work with.

Top 5 Reasons to be on Linkedin

Top 5 Reasons to be on Linkedin

1) CREATE A VIRTUAL RESUME- You can post a virtual resume, which can be viewed by recruiters and hiring managers who are looking to hire.

2) RESEARCH- You can use Linkedin to research a company you are interested in working at, and find out if you know anyone that can get you in the door. The more people you are connected to, the more companies and people you will be able to view. Another way to research using Linkedin is to research the person you are meeting with prior to your interview.

3) NEWTWORKING- Many people are unsure what to do once they have met with someone at a networking event. Linkedin makes it easier then ever to connect with that person, assuming they are on Linkedin, immediately after your networking event. You can then utilize them as a future resource for potential job connections.

4) WEEKLY STATUS UPDATE EMAIL- You can update your “status” once a week,  and from there Linkedin will email everyone in your professional network in their weekly email updates about what you are doing that week. This can be used to help you gain introductions to certain companies and land your next job!

5) INCREASED VISIBILITY- Having a Linkedin profile increases your overall visibility, including raising your visibility on Google. This can help if a potential employer Google’s your name before they bring you in for an interview. You can also join various groups on Linkedin, and start discussions within those groups which will also help raise your visibility.

The Art of the Thank You Card

Dear Mr. Employer,

I would like to thank you for taking time out of your busy schedule to meet with me this week regarding your job opportunity. I enjoyed learning more about both you and the organization. I strongly feel that my background in (insert your specialty here) would make me a great asset to your organization. I look forward to seeing you again, and to pursuing this opportunity further.


A. Job-seeker

Really people, a thank you letter does not have to be complicated. The most important thing is to send one and to make sure you proofread it! I cannot tell you how many business executives and Human Resources professionals I have worked with, who complain about not receiving a simple thank you letter or worse, have complained about unprofessional or poorly written thank you letters. Do you have to hand write one? No, however, I would strongly encourage you to do so. The reason that you want to write a hand written note in addition to an email one is to go the extra mile. What gets a person hired is proving they are willing to go above and beyond, and writing a hand written thank you letter is the easiest way to do so.

You initially want to send an email thank you letter with just the basics, as I have shown above. Thank them for their time, remind them why you would be an asset, and let them know you are interested in following up on the position. This email thank you letter should be sent the day of the interview so that you are on their mind at the end of that day or the beginning of the next day. Then, you want to write a hand written thank you letter the following day, and send it out. Thus, they will receive your hand written thank you letter a few days after the interview, and will again be reminded to think of you.
By following these two easy steps:

1) Send an email thank you letter the day of the interview
2) Send a follow up hand written thank you letter the day after the interview

You will be guaranteed to stay fresh in the minds of your potential employers.

Common Interview Questions

Typical Interview Questions to prepare for:

Tell me about yourself…

Why should we want to hire you?

Why would you like to work for us?

Why did you leave your last job/Why are you looking to leave your job?

What is your biggest weakness/strength?

What is your bottom line salary requirement or what are your salary expectations?

What makes you qualified for this job?

What do you know about this company?

What can you contribute to this company?

Are you overqualified for this position?

What moti
vates you?

What has been your biggest disappointment in life?

What was the biggest challenge/failure or success you have ever faced?

How do you handle pressure/stress?

Tell me about a time when you didn’t get along with your boss and how you handled it?

What type of work environment do you prefer?

Do you prefer to work independently or as part of a team?

Describe a time where you encountered a problem on a project and how you overcame it?

Where do you see yourself in 5 years?

What are you looking for in your next position?

How do you plan to achieve those goals?

Making Money is Easy…

In a recent interview with a very successful high 6 figure earner, she explained to me that “Making money is easy…The hard part is having your life work.” Upon sharing this bold statement with me, she went on to say that for the last 20 years of her life she has had the opportunity to make 6 figures in a variety of positions. Prior to her first 6 figure job she had worked diligently as a customer service representative for close to 14 years for various phone companies such as GE and Pacbell, and prior to that, had been in banking.

One day, after many long unrewarding years of working in corporate America, a new door opened for her. She was recently divorced, and now a single mother with 3 growing children to provide for. Her telephone company salary was not going to pay the bills. It was around this time that she went in to get a new insurance policy for her family. While at the insurance agent’s office, she began to get curious about what life as an insurance agent was like. After a lengthy conversation, and a quick introduction to the insurance world and the money that could be earned in the insurance arena, she made up her mind to take vacation from her telephone company job so that she could study for her series 6 and 63. At this point she knew NOTHING about the insurance industry, and had never worked a commission only job in her life. The only thing she did know was she was a capable, hard-working single mother and could do anything she put her mind to, which is exactly what she did.

In her first year as an insurance agent she far surpassed her 6 figure income goal, and never looked back! She had never before realized that being on 100% commission meant that you no longer had a cap on your income. You were directly compensated for how successful you were. Since that first insurance position she took over 20 years ago, she has consistently made 6 figures or more in a variety of positions including recruiting, sales, and most recently Multi-Level Marketing where she easily earns 6 figures a year while only working 20 hours a week!

She attributes her success to designing her own life. She did  this by writing out exactly what she wanted her life to look like and by taking note of her own personal attributes which would help her to be a success. She took a long hard look at what she wanted and how a 6 figure income would help her to accomplish her goals. Then she went out and persevered.

In her opinion, “The money is easy. You can make money legally or illegally. Money is not what matters. What does matter is doing a job you are passionate about. Once you figure that out, the rest is easy. With the right desire and talent you can get achieve your dreams.”

The Dreaded 3-Some

Panel interviews are typically twice as hard and half as much fun as regular interviews. Instead of trying to capture the attention of one cranky human resources professional, you are now responsible to entertain 2, 3 or sometimes even 5 interviewers at once. The question then becomes, how do you keep their attention in positive manner?

One suggestion I would make is to periodically address each interviewer by name. A job seeker recently shared a story with me, wherein she perceived that the interview did not go as well as she had hoped. One of the three people who was interviewing her seemed to be completely disinterested and practically ignored her. She asked me what she could have done differently, and I gave her the same advice I just gave you: take the time to address each person by name and focus on each individual as you are speaking. 
If Interviewer A, lets call him Bob, is not giving you the time of day, then it is time to take more drastic measures. Bob may have other things on his mind, but you can quickly bring him back to earth and help him focus on what is important: YOU!
One method to draw an interviewer into focus is to direct a statement to the person whose attention you would like to capture:
“Bob, let me share with you some interesting ideas and strategies about X that I feel I could bring to the table.”
Bob’s lackadaisical attitude may have nothing to do with you, therefor, it is critical not to take it personally. You should always maintain your enthusiasm, as well as a positive attitude. 
It is important to be intentional in your speaking at all times, however, in the dreaded 3-some or panel situation, it is even more critical to be focused and engaged with each individual, especially if one seems aloof. All great speakers know that you have to speak to each person in the audience as if you were speaking with them one-on-one. The more eye contact and focus you have, the stronger your panel interview will come across!

Soaring towards Success

In interviewing 6 figure earners for my book, I had the chance to speak with a Captain for a major airline carrier who has been in the business for close to 30 years. Although airline pilots are union and their salaries are predetermined, after your first few years, there is definitely an opportunity to earn 6 figures, and to still have the time you have always wanted to travel the world as well. I was surprised to learn that pilots only get paid from the time the brakes are released for take off to the time when the brakes are set upon landing. Pilots are ONLY allowed to fly 1,000 hours a year. What are they spending the rest of those hours on? For this 6 figure earner, vacations and golfing were definitely at the top of his priority list.

Being a captain of a major airliner is not all fun and games though. As enjoyable as it sounds to jet set around the world, you are also 100% responsible for the lives of the people on your plane. This 6 figure earner I interviewed not only is a captain, but also spends his spare time training other pilots. As we all saw from the plane crash into the Hudson Bay earlier this year, having an experienced, well trained pilot to land the plane safely in an emergency can be priceless.

What does it take for a pilot to get hired on with a major airline? Well for one thing, it is not easy. It takes many hours of training, and flying before you can even be considered to work for a major airline. In addition, if you are not someone who comes from military background, you often have to pay tens of thousands of dollars to get all of your ratings. Today, getting your ratings can cost upward of 40-50k. The Captain I interviewed did not have his Bachelor’s Degree when he began his pursuit of becoming a pilot, but said that in today’s day and age, it would be almost impossible to become a pilot without it. He also did not have the 20/20 vision, which was required to become a fighter pilot at the time he began his flying career, but he did not let that stop him. He invested all of his time, money and energy into getting his ratings and learning how to fly.

There were many obstacles in the way of the Captain I interviewed, but with every hurdle he encountered, he became even more resolute to get his pilot’s license and become and amazing pilot. From when he was a little boy of only 6 or 7, he had always loved airplanes. He would often join his father at Miramar Airbase in San Diego, where his father worked, and stare in fascination at the planes for hours on end.  His biggest obstacle, as with many things, was timing. You had to be at the right place, at the right time, with the right qualifications. It took many years of investing both time and money by the time he was finally able to get paid to fly. He learned an important lesson in perseverance during that period of his life.

By the time he was finally ready to pursue landing a job with a major airline, a recession had hit! This meant airlines were laying off, and after all that hard work, he was left with very few options. At the time, he was bartending, and began to consider giving up his lifelong dream of becoming a major airline pilot. He even considered changing his career path to becoming an air traffic controller. Despite all of the hindrances he encountered, he never gave up and chose to ride out the recession.

Finally, after years of chasing his dream, he landed a job as a commuter pilot and was paid relatively well given the times. Then, only a short time after he had accepted his commuter pilot job, an opportunity arose to work for a major airline, but it was for far less money. Regardless, he took a leap of faith and went for it. He knew that, while he may have to take a pay cut in the short term, in the long run his decision would pay off, and he was right!

Now, after over 20 years of working for one of the top airlines in the world, he gets to pick and choose where he wants to fly, when he wants to fly, and gets paid to do something he loves and has been passionate about since he was 6 years old. If you learn anything from this Captain’s story, just remember that sometimes life may seem hard, insurmountable obstacles may seem to get in your way, and recessions may happen, but if you never give up and go after your dreams, you too, can live the life you have always dreamed of!