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Talent is God given. Be humble.
Fame is man-given. Be grateful.
Conceit is self-given. Be careful.
John Wooden celebrates his 99th Birthday today. Truly a life well lived…
Here it is:
‘What do you think of my resume?’ What’s worse, most don’t even realize there’s anything wrong…
It’s usually even more difficult for those with the most tenure. In other words, this happens to some of the best. In this regard, it’s an equal opportunity issue and often doesn’t discriminate…
In fact, most people we work with find themselves unemployed through no fault of their own, often the direct result of Merger, Acquisition, RIF, plant closings, etc.
They’re often provided, as a part of their severance package, a resume service via contracted 3rd party. Don’t misunderstand, this is a GOOD thing. However, these days, and particularly in this market, that’s just a good starting point…
You need to have a FOCUSED approach and less is generally more, i.e., tweak and customize your skill sets and background experience as most applicable to the opportunity you seek.
Reality Check: The days of a generic resume with an objective along the lines of, ‘seeking an opportunity to utilize my skills in a growth oriented company’ are long since over… That’s about as stale as it gets. In fact, I’m not a big fan of an objective at all. A professional overview is much preferred.
Let’s face it, Marketing, Sales, Engineering and yes, even Management are each at times independently BRILLIANT, but seldom all 3 at once…
EXAMPLE: We love our Dentist, and I LOVE my Chiropractor; but I wouldn’t want them to trade places before my next appointment!!
Finally, and cannot over emphasize this point enough, it wasn’t our intent to have every candidate quite literally ask, it was more rhetorical in nature. You’ve got it, we aren’t philanthropist’s. (utilize the aforementioned severance services)
If you’ve ever been to a football game being played by 8-9 year olds, it resembles a cross between a Rugby Scrum and Dodgeball w/Helmets.
Hence, entertaining but hard to figure out who’s got the ball or what’s really going on… Especially considering the poor viewing angle available via bleachers. How could I possibly have learned from this? Simple: by watching the adults…more specifically the Head Coach.
Picture this: he’s pacing the sidelines back and forth as if this were the NFL Playoffs. (Who knows, maybe he had a friendly ‘wager’ pending?) But still he drones on and on, back and forth, grimacing, looking at the ground chewing gum in perfect rhythm with his step.
Back and forth, over and over… Did I mention this guy is built like a Brick $hit house? Probably 6 ft, 220 and muscular. If it werent so disturbing to witness, it would be funny. I’m thinking, this guy needs to be in a Southwest Airlines commercial, ie, ‘Wanna get away?’
This pacing is only interrupted by intermittent groans of pain (with or without hands thrown in the air). He’s obviously disgusted at his teams performance, and verbalizes this often. The team seems headed for another inevitable loss…AGAIN…
Halftime:Coach decides to the only thing to do is shame them into playing harder, ‘Im watchin’ you guys and I see some of you not running and giving 100%. If that doesnt change in the 2nd half, you’re going to be running the whole practice on Monday!”
NICE. How’s that workin’ out for ya, Coach? These guys are gettin’ their 9 yr old asses kicked all over the field, now the same holds true for the sideline! As predicted, the level of motivation these guys have is rapidly diminishing, 19-0, 26-0, and finally, the pain subsides temporarily, and its over.
First and foremost, dont be too quick to ‘judge’ Coach. Afterall, his hearts in the right place and this is all he knows. Heck, their not paying him for this torture. Likely this is how he was taught…
Moreover, having ‘coached’ my son’s tee ball team of 3-5 year olds, I know personally the special pain of watching your team get clobbered. In fact, we looked like the Bad News Bears, or so I thought. It was very close in many ways to herding cats…
You see, these guys are a first year team, and they end up playing teams with older, bigger and faster kids. Point being, you could have the best game plan in the world, but it doesnt matter if you cant block, run and/or tackle nearly as well as the other guys…
So how many of us, like me, find ourselves on the sideline, worrying about market conditions in the same way? Worse, wasting energy by pacing back and forth and not really making any progress, hoping it will be different next quarter, or 2nd half, or next game, maybe next season?
We should be LEARNING right now. Lets face it, we rarely learn anything when we’re winning all the time… 2 final thoughts courtesy of the Dalai Lama:
1) ‘WHEN YOU LOSE, DONT LOSE THE LESSON’
2) ‘WHEN THE STUDENT IS READY, THE TEACHER APPEARS’
Dont you have better things to do, like RUN YOUR BUSINESS?? Let the pro’s handle the increased candidate flow.
BECAUSE, if you think youve got the best candidates ~youre wrong~ just the best candidates that have applied OR those that are ACTIVELY looking… BIG DIFFERENCE!
Learn more about EASTeam and additional insight on this topic by clicking here:
(Pssst, usually the best and brightest arent unemployed until the bitter end. Willing to wait that long??)
EASTeam’s friends @ www.motioncontrol.com asked we provide some insight that would benefit their readers. The best place to start, just also happens to be the easiest to prevent…the resume. In these difficult economic times, there’s no need to make a bad situation worse, albeit very common, by making any one of the following mistakes when preparing a resume:
Trying to be all things to all people (part 1) ~ Don’t do it. It doesn’t work and will only water down the message. Remember, we’re looking for a laser beam, not a flood light here… This absolutely applies to the ‘objective’ portion. I much prefer a ‘summary’ portion hitting a few highlights and can be easily customized (and absolutely should be) for each individual opportunity.
Trying to be all things to all people (part 2) ~ Don’t do it either. It doesn’t work and will only water down the message. (It’s like déjà vu all over again). However, you may want to have several DIFFERENT versions of your resume, i.e., one that focuses on project mgmt, one that focuses on technical design engineering, and later on in your career a focus on leadership.
Focusing on Responsibilities vs. Accomplishments ~ No one cares that you were in charge of filling out and keeping up to date the SPC lies, err, uhh, I mean ‘CAP’ statements at the end of every shift… However, we do care about ANYTHING that you have done alone (or contributed to within a team) that added real value to the product, implemented cost or scrap reductions, or contributed to process improvement…in other words, things that impact the Bottom Line.
Delivering CV vs. Resume ~ That’s right. If you’re applying for an academic role, by all means feel free to add in the 14 pages of dribble, err uhh, research and team based study groups you’ve participated. (Don’t forget to include the Dungeons & Dragons Club chair post you likely proudly held). This is America, so get on the bus: that means no pictures, no ‘my mother tongue is ___’, etc. Just 2 pages of meat & potatoes. Period. Remember, this is not going to get you the job nor is it a 3D look, it’s merely a starting point for dialogue and should be presented as such. No more, no less.
Exaggerating about your Experience ~ If you sat next to a guy for the last 20 years via the neighboring cube whose focus in life was developing motor algorithms’, well, that doesn’t make you an expert. No, it isn’t transferred magically by proxy via the cube wall. So, it may get you an interview, but that’s about it. You can bet they will find out and most likely sooner than later. The sooner the better for all, for that matter…
*Note* didn’t mention, ‘No Lying.’ That goes without saying, but not without writing… he he
The Engineering & Automation Solutions Team (EASTeam) is comprised of a multinational workforce focused primarily on recruitment of technical engineering professionals located within the Industrial Automation & Motion Control Industry. EASTeam is led by Kirk Abraham, an award winning executive recruiter, and partner with an Indianapolis based franchise of the MRI Network. More @ www.engineeringsolutionsteam.com
That’s right, even with unemployment at 10%. What’s worse, most don’t understand WHY this is happening…
Let me clarify; I’m referring to white collar, degreed engineering professionals. GenY, GenX and Boomers. All of them.
EX: if you’re a textile worker in the southeast, that’s NOT the demographic being referenced.
OK. Let’s pretend that there are 1,000 people in the US that have a special skill set that you need, albeit due to attrition, expansion, or many other reasons why.
I’m feeling extra generous today, so let’s just say that only 50% aren’t interested or willing to relocate. Of the 500 that remain, at least 2/3 will be unable to sell their home due to the market conditions.
Yikes! This massive number has already shrunk to approximately 175 available candidates (we haven’t even begun the search yet).
Truth told, I’ve never been happier to see a Police Car with it’s lights on headed my direction!! This (literally) gave me chills…
If you’re looking for it here, you won’t find it… However , we attempt to shift this highly subjective process to as objective as possible by utilizing this simple, yet highly effective diagnostic tool when considering a career change.
I’m a simple guy, so I break it down via the acronym ‘CLAMS - X’. Suggest that INDIVIDUALLY you & THEN your spouse rate from each from 1-5 by order of importance.
C =’s Challenge: opportunity or role itself – Growth potential - overall ‘fit’ - industry specialty
L =’s Location, Location, Location…
A =’s Availability, i.e., when? Timing…
M =”s Money -compensation, bonus, profit sharing, Benefit costs/quality
S =’s Stability or Security (aka, the NEW STOCK OPTION)
X =’s the all important X-Factor. An example would be a great boss at your current position or your wife’s current position.
Possibly you have different priorities?? If so, it’s strongly recommended those be discussed as early as possible in this process.
Here’s an example ~ take the last letter, X: remember that great boss that you and/or your wife have? Sure, she’s willing to transfer, but that would mean she’d have report to a different manager, MR. Joe Johnson via the BLAH BLAH division & no one wants to go there. Kabeesh?
Another Killer is RELOCATION: say you’d love to be in Florida, but your 2 high school aged kids feel otherwise. However, if they plan on going to college, maybe this is necessary? Kabeesh x2? :)
Talk about it. Discuss & discuss some more. By all means talk with your recruiter if you feel they have everyone’s best interest in mind, and not just trying to “make a placement”, but that’s a whole different topic…
You may understand the importance of SM (SocialMedia), but very likely you’re unable to recognize an effective implementation within the day to day functions of your business. You get the WHY but not the HOW…
You are in luck, because this is an EXCELLENT example... I had done business with this company and they were following up with me via email. Please note that this was not only a necessary communiqué, but certainly wanted and/or welcomed.
The point: it wasn’t an email BLAST/SPAM with Zero Value. Quite the contrary; this was an important step in the process. They seized this opportunity to make us aware of additional SM presence whereby we could maintain contact with the organization all the time and benefit by being ‘in the know’ of events, specials, etc…
But wait…that’s not all… Because we were also invited to have a chance to tell them: ‘Why we love their COMPANY‘ via video. The grand prize is a year’s worth of free visits. Outstanding!
What just happened? We’ve just been asked to enter a contest to communicate our video testimonial. I was really impressed. These folks really get it. So I called and told them so…
Turns out they’d hired a 3rd party to handle this component of their marketing efforts. Which indicates they also understand their limitations, ie, they outsourced the process to a firm that specializes in this type of work.
After being referred to this company, based in Chicagoland, I visited their website. Tap tap tap & click… BOOM!
Im on their site…first words I’m greeted with: “Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do.” –Steve Jobs
They go on further to state their intentions/business focus: “Our management team is focused on doing the things we love…creating great work, developing great products and working with great people.” Assume this was a quote via Jon Schepke, President and Founder. Need any help with YOUR SocialMedia presence?? http://www.simpartners.biz/
Bottom Line: BOTH OF THESE COMPANY’s “GET IT” ~ DOES YOURS?
I agree. Do you? If so, to what degree? The guru behind Apple and our beloved iPhone IPod’s had this to say @ Stanford commencement address:
“Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do.”
Time for an honest appraisal of your current situation:
How does my company market themselves?
How do they benchmark their online reputation?
Are they acutely aware of how important this can be?
Do they assume that everyone holds them in high regard – without this presence? If so, why?
This is kind of a silly, albeit highly entertaining <30 second video clip.
I’m sure you’ll enjoy:
But the topic is a very serious one… Put it in perspective: Don’t you go to a Lawyer when you have legal difficulties, a Mechanic w/specific knowledge of your vehicle when your car breaks down, a Broker or similar expert for your financial planning, a Doctor when you’re sick, a Dentist when you have a toothache…ad infinitum.
Point is, when do you feel the best time to initiate a relationship with said party? When you NEED them or BEFORE you need them? Wouldn’t they be better suited to provide value to your situation if they were apprised of your goals, obstacles, and were able to help facilitate a solution via planning and collective sharing of info.
Who’s IN YOUR CORNER looking out for YOUR CAREER?
Who’s ADVOCATING YOUR ORGANIZATIONAL NEEDS TODAY?
However, not unlike any other relationship, there is a courting period, and at some point we decide it would be a good idea for us to form a union. But ask yourself this: do you still open the car door for your spouse, now that you’re married (rhetorical question). Do you still cozy up on the same couch and watch the same shows and like the same stuff??? Do ya?
Here’s an Example: Interviewing for a new job? OK, great. You want to put your best foot forward and demonstrate your a high caliber top notch super star, right??? Well, ok, maybe not… But, you ARE on your BEST BEHAVIOR. Well, why would it be any different for the organization at which you’re interviewing? Guess what? IT’S NOT.
Why are you so surprised when the faceless giant organization
you went to work for treats you like a number??
Hey, this has been happening since your first contact…IF YOU’VE BEEN PAYING ATTENTION! Helloooo…remember filling out that application and depositing your resume in the black hole, errr uhh, I mean resume database? How about the follow up email (if the spam email filter didn’t get it), or the HR person that called you up several months later to make you aware that YOU, that’s right, lucky YOU have been CHOSEN! You get to interview. Woo Hoo! We’ll expect your arrival, tomorrow at 10 am, that’s not too soon is it? I could go on and on but wont.
But sadly, many top flight professional has been sucked into this trap. Bright Lights and fabulous Logo ~not to mention the looks on the faces of friends and family when they say, “yup, I’m going to work for (fill in blank here)”.
Here’s an interesting article on Corp Culture via ThomasNet: http://tinyurl.com/UR-Corp-Culture
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