Weekly Roundup of Top 3 Job Search Tips

Each Friday, I’ll be posting the top 3 job search tips I’ve found from the scores of blog posts I see and will pass them along. Also, I will be looking for your votes on which is your favorite. Feel free to forward this link to your friends in transition.

 

So, here are my top three this week:

Meg Giuseppi’s blog Executive Resume Branding has the The 20 Most Common LinkedIn Mistakes

Here’s an excerpt:

You probably know by now that LinkedIn is a powerful networking tool for personal branding and executive job search.

In case you don’t, get busy immediately building your branded profile, connecting with people, expressing your executive brand, and leveraging LinkedIn to full advantage.

But don’t make these 20 mistakes:

BUILDING YOUR PROFILE

1.  Not personalizing your LinkedIn public profile URL.
Many people leave the default mess of letters and numbers at the end of the URL. Change that to “yourname” or as close to it as you can come, as I did with mine – http://www.linkedin.com/in/megguiseppi

2.  Not including a photo.
Branding and career marketing are about creating emotional connections. People believe content more when it’s accompanied by the author’s photo. An online profile with no photo is a missed opportunity to reinforce your brand and engage people.

3.  Not adding links to websites or web pages.
Include links to your website, blog, VisualCV, Twitter or other online profiles, so people can get more on-brand information about you and see what else you’re up to.

4.  Not having a searchable professional headline that brands your unique promise of value and resonates with your target audience.
Make sure your relevant key word phrases show up in your headline so that recruiters and hiring decision makers sourcing top candidates by searching LinkedIn will find you.

5.  Having no (or only 1 or 2) recommendations.
Solicit recommendations that reinforce your brand and the best you have to offer.

For the 15 other tips and rest of her post, click here.

Next is Dawn Jordan’s post in the Wall Street Journal’s Blog, Laid Off and Looking – authored by a series of guest bloggers describing their job search efforts and thoughts. Here’s her post in it’s entirety:

Last week a friend told me about the most unlikely place he found a job. It was during his child’s swim meet when a fellow parent casually asked what he did and where he worked. That impromptu poolside conversation turned into a new job for my friend.

His story segued into a conversation on unconventional sources for job leads. It also motivated me to try something different. Since then I’ve been asking people “What was the most unlikely place you found a job?”

They’ve answered with stories ranging from encounters during dog walks to waiting in line at Starbucks. Some of the stories were about situations in which I’m unlikely to find myself. But even those answers produced three tangible benefits.

First, it put people at ease. I wasn’t asking for a favor. I was showing an interest in them, giving them an opportunity to talk about themselves. This two-way sharing generated a stronger connection than my usual approach ever had.

Second, the question fired up their creative thinking. It got them out of the passive listener role and most of their answers were interesting and helpful. Before I could even ask, most offered additional suggestions about professional organizations, job boards or, best of all, names of people they would contact for me.

Here is the real gem in all of this. Asking people about their own experiences evoked empathy, support and action. They instantly remembered their own anxiety during their job search. It elicited a quicker, stronger, and warmer response than I’ve experienced before.

The takeaway of this experiment is the optimistic reminder that I never know when or where opportunity may strike. The real challenge might be recognizing it.

Fianlly, I love this post from Seth Godin, Hammer time

While not specifically about job search, his lessons on our background and our filters and biases point out how we need to adapt to changing situations. Amen.

Hammer time

So, if it’s true that to a person with a hammer, every problem looks like a nail, the really useful question is, “what sort of hammer do you have?”

At big TV networks, they have a TV hammer. At a surgeon’s office, they have the scalpel hammer. A drug counselor has the talk hammer, while a judge probably has the jail hammer.

Maybe it’s time for a new hammer…

One study found that when confronted with a patient with back pain, surgeons prescribed surgery, physical therapists thought that therapy was indicated and yes, acupuncturists were sure needles were the answer. Across the entire universe of patients, the single largest indicator of treatment wasn’t symptoms or patient background, it was the background of the doctor.

When the market changes, you may be seeing all the new opportunities and problems the wrong way because of the solutions you’re used to. The reason so many organizations have trouble using social media is that they are using precisely the wrong hammer. And odds are, they will continue to do so until their organization fails. PR firms try to use the new tools to send press releases, because, you guessed it, that’s their hammer.

It’s not just about new vs. old. Inveterate community-focused social media mavens often bring that particular hammer to other venues. So they crowdsource keynote speeches or restaurants or board meetings and can’t figure out why they don’t have the impact others do.

The best way to find the right tool for the job is to learn to be good at switching hammers.

Which is your favorite?
JP Headshot1

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