Key to Successful Job Search is understanding own strengths and areas of improvement Understand overall expectations of the occupation Understand different titles in that occupation Understand options for occupation
20 minutes Examine yourself! What do you like to do? Look at the task, activities and responsibilities of the position that interest you and determine which you LIKE to do. Highlight those tasks and activities in a specific color (Orange). Remember, this is what you LIKE doing, not what you CAN do or what you are GOOD at doing. I can do many things, but I don’t like some of them. Without this insight into what you LIKE to do, you cannot go after the job you want. It has to be a good fit, otherwise you will fail in the interview. Now go through all of the KSA, tasks and activities and put a YELLOW dot (or highlight) those items you are the BEST at doing. Do not include things you know you can do but you are not good at doing them. Spend some time thinking about past annual reviews a supervisor has given you. What did you excel at? An example is that I can sew, but I would never say I was good at it. By knowing and understanding that, I keep from disappointing myself or others and I don’t volunteer to sew something important. Then with a third highlighter indicate all of the things you can or have done before. So we know what we like to do and we know what we are the BEST at. Step back and think about these results. If you LIKE to do the things you are BEST at, that is GREAT! If there are many things you marked as being BEST at, but don’t LIKE doing them, take some time to think about those issues. If you are doing work that you don’t like, it will show. Finally, what is the ratio of things you can or have done to the things expected for the job. If there is a lot of white space, this may not be the job for you. Is your resume ready? If you fold it in half, does it reflect your skills and what accomplishments you have that show those skills? Does your resume match what the job posting is asking? Remember – KEYWORDS!!! Don’t mass produce your resume. Network with the right people. If you want an analyst job, then you need to identify the friends, family and people in your network who are analyst or work with analyst. This requires you to discuss their job, what they do and who they work with daily. They will know when jobs are coming available.
10 minutes So you know the gaps. Now what? That depends on the gap and how best to close it. Options include: Education – either self taught or take a class Experience or Practice – VOLUNTEER yourself to gain those skills; find a purpose and keep your skills sharp while making a difference. Take action! Everyday you should have something you are working on to improve your options!
A few months ago, when I first started conducting these sessions, someone told me that no one was talking about corporate culture. Having come from a company where the culture is so strong and unique, I thought it would be a great topic to address. When looking at companies for a new position, finding that right fit is as important as the day to day responsibilities you are given on the job. Tonight, we will explore corporate/company culture, how to uncover a company’s culture and why it is so important. One of the greatest aspects of exploring a company’s culture is that you begin understanding more about yourself, your values, your beliefs and the type of environment you enjoy working in day to day. How many of you have worked in a company where you didn’t like going everyday as the boss and people in the company just drove you crazy? If you haven’t experienced this before, trust that it can drain your energy immediately and you spend more time trying to get you job done than necessary. As a job seeker, uncovering and researching a company’s culture will help you get hired. As you look at job openings, understanding how a company operates and is organized makes those openings more understandable. During an interview, it allows you to ask deeper questions about the position and address how you would accomplish the responsibilities ensuring that you are aligned with the goals and objectives of the company. The more knowledgeable you are about a company’s core believes and values, the higher probability you will connect with the person conducting the interview. NOTE OF CAUTION: Don’t fake a connect! All of this research shouldn’t stop while in a job. Employees who understand the overall goals and objectives of the company will ensure they are working on the right things to make the company successful. Creating a connection with how the management thinks, works and bases their decisions allows you to understand the direction of the company. A key thing to remember is that every person and organization is unique. There isn’t a right or wrong culture (with the exception of those doing something completely illegal). Ethics and morality are individually gauged and one persons beliefs and values is not another ones. Listen to what others have to say about the company culture, but don’t judge based solely on what others have said.
So what is corporate culture? (NOTE: I am interchanging corporate and company. This is really any organization.) If we look at an individual, they behave based on their personal beliefs, values, ethics, morals, experiences and education. These all help form a personality that reacts and works in certain ways based on how they have developed over the years. An organization or company is comprised of people who all have their individual beliefs, values, ethics, morals, experiences and education. When they work together, their shared traits come together to create an overall culture of an organization. A culture is the shared values and practices of the employees. The longer people work together, the more ingrained their practices become. They behave in a way to accomplish what they jointly believe needs to be accomplished. Interestingly enough, when you look at a company’s mission, vision, values, beliefs, goals and objectives these may or may not align with the actual culture of the organization. The Meridian Group defined it as: A company’s culture is its personality. It tells people how to do their work. It takes signals from leaders. It underlines motivation, morale, creativity and marketplace success. A company is a culture. Culture sets how we behave; what to do and what not to do Gallop Poll in USA Today (5/20/01) 25% of employees are actively engaged 55% of employees have no enthusiasm for their work 19% are so uninterested or negative about their work people who work for employers that are hiring new workers tend to have a significantly more positive outlook on their lives than people who work for companies that are laying people off. August, 2009 Gallup While 50% of Americans employed full- or part-time are completely satisfied with their job security today, this is the lowest level seen since 2003, and is down from a high of 56% in 2007. As a result of these shifts, some of which are quite small, workers are now registering the highest satisfaction levels Gallup has seen with respect to their vacation time (56% completely satisfied), health insurance benefits (43%), workload (54%), opportunities for promotion (40%), safety conditions (76%), and personal recognition (50%).
The larger an organization, the more likely that sub-cultures will exist. http://www.itstime.com/aug2000.htm#models This can happen in departments, divisions, regions or operating units. Corporate culture starts when the organization begins and develops as it grows. Over time, the culture changes as people come and go. Culture reflects the values, ethics, beliefs, personality and traits of the company&apos;s founders, management and employees. In a well-established company, the culture is so strong that even new top management may not be able to change it. Or, if they try, it may take 5, 10 or 20 years to change. Employees who feel comfortable and compatible with the company culture will stay; those who don&apos;t will leave or will not perform as well as they can Values – beliefs of a person or group in which they have an emotional investment (either for or against). These are usually a collection of guiding, usually positive principles. Ethics – motivation based on what is right and wrong; typical moral values and rules Beliefs – a cognitive content held as true Personality traits – Openness (or Intellect), Conscientiousness, Extraversion, Agreeableness, Neuroticism
One of the hardest things I have done in my career is terminating leaders who thought they could come in and change how the organization worked overall. One of the more frustrating things that occurred was when my leaders brought people in asking them to change how the organization worked without starting with changes at the top. There is a reason that a company will bring in Management Consultants to help change how organizations work. Making organizational change without understanding the culture or while fighting the culture will lead to failure. Managing change while working with the culture will allow for individuals to see where procedural, process changes can occur without damaging the company’s core beliefs and values. The deeper the culture, the more emotional it will become. The longer the leadership team has remained together, working in the same culture, the strong those beliefs, values and traits become. Before you can understand this though, you must understand your core values, beliefs and principles. One book I recommend you read is Steven Covey and Roger & Rebecca Merrill’s book, First Things First. Who has read the book and applied it to their life? Or done a similar process? The beauty of maturity is understanding yourself. Some of us begin this process at different stages of life. Others never explore themselves. The goal is to feel confident in YOU, so that you can know why you make decisions that you make and how you make decisions in your life. What are your collection of guiding, positive principles that you have an emotional investment and make up as your values? What beliefs (what you hold as true) are these values based on? What are your moral values and rules or how do you determine right from wrong? Have you written these down? Have you conducted a personality test or looked back on previous tests? There are numerous test available (link for Personality tests under resources). Understanding how you relate to others, your level of extraverted ness, level of anxiety and level of agreeableness will help you make sure you find that right fit. You can adjust and make changes in your personality, but realize you need to identify strengths in your personality and look at how that makes you stronger as an employee. Helping the company understand why you are the best match, will help you get into the right company.
St Louis Business Journal Best Employers lists Working Women
How To Find Your Next Job Day 1 Slides
Getting Down to the Nitty Gritty of
How to Find Your Next Job
• Area of Job Search
• One Word that Describes Your Search
• What is a Career Plan?
• Assessing Your Skills
• Bridging the Skills Gap
• Identifying the Best Opportunities
• Understanding Company Culture
• Selling Your Skills as a Service
• Assembling Part 1 of your Career Plan
• MindMap on Job Search
• Wrap-up and Preview of Tomorrow
• Explore YOU with skills assessment
• Understand Occupation and Opportunities
• Identify Transferable Skills
• Career Training, Education and Experience
• Putting YOU on paper
• Networking and a Mentor
• Presenting You
• Tracking Progress
• Be sure to file for unemployment benefits.
Information can be found at:
– labor.mo.gov/des/claims/index.asp for Missouri
– www.ides.state.il.us/individual/online_claim.asp for
• Register with Career Centers
– Missouricareersource.com or illinoisworknet.com
• Research programs available to you while you
– labor.mo.gov/DES/Claims/public_programs.asp in
Assessing Your Skills
• Read previous performance reviews
• Ask for feedback
• Document key task, activities and
accomplishments for each position
• Think volunteer and day-to-day life, not
• Understand what you like versus dislike
Finding Your Occupational Profile
• Browse Occupations (left hand corner)
• Select Specific Occupation
• Select State – Missouri or Illinois
• Occupational Profile will Display
• Recommend viewing in Printer-Friendly
Sections of Occupational Profile
• Wages – try not to focus on this section
• Knowledge, Skills & Abilities
• Tasks & Activities
• Tools & Technology
• Education & Training
Assess Your Skills
1. Highlight All you LOVE to do.
2. Highlight in a different color all those you
3. Highlight in a different color all your
STRENGTHS (based on others
4. Mark those that you can do but need to
15 MINUTE BREAK
• INTRODUCE YOURSELF TO ONE
PERSON WHO YOU DO NOT KNOW.
• FIND SOMETHING OUT ABOUT THAT
PERSON THAT WOULD HELP YOU
REFER AN OPPORTUNITY TO THEM
• Where are your GAPS?
• Can you or will you close the GAPS?
• What training do you need?
• Update skills to close gaps
2010 Skills Gap Report
• Conducted by UM – St. Louis College of
• Steve Finkelstein, Sr. Partner at
Experience on Demand
• Conducted Jan. 2010 with 317
2010 Critical Skills
• Active Listening
• Critical/ Analytical
• Time Management
• Prioritization &
• Decision Making
2010 Skills Gap
• People Management /
• Change Management
• Strategic Planning
• Active Listening
• Time Management
• Critical / Analytical
• Lean Thinking /
• What impression do you want to give?
• What impression are you giving?
• Things to consider:
– Physical Appearance
– Attitude and Tone
– Interest and Attention
– Drive and Energy
Companies Who Hire
• Under MORE RESOURCES select
America’s Career Infonet
• Select Employer Locator
• Select location, occupation
• Research Companies
• Watch on InDeed.com
Positions & Postings
• Search by Job Titles NOT keywords
• READ Carefully
• Typically three sections
– Company Info
– Position Description
– Position Requirements
• Find Key Points
Why Explore Corporate
• Helps you understand yourself
• Increases your potential of getting hired
• Ensures right match with skills and
• Greatest opportunity for success when in
• Everyone is unique so don’t go with others
perception, create your own!
What is Corporate Culture?
• Shared values and practices of the
• May not match published culture
• The company’s personality
• How people do their work
• Culture sets how we behave
What is Corporate Culture?
• Sub-cultures can exist
• Industries have culture too
• The culture can change over time
• Personality Traits
• Ignoring the culture or working against
culture will lead to failure
• There isn’t a RIGHT or WRONG culture,
just a right or wrong FIT
• Company Values, Beliefs and Ethics must
be compatible with Individual
• A company with unethical or illegal
business practices; or sick culture will self-
Research A Company’s Culture
• Company Website
• Public Relations Materials
• People in your Network
• The CEO or Owners
• Corporate structure
• Public filings
• Wetfeet.com & glassdoor.com
Questions to Ask
• What is the energy of the company?
• What is your leadership style?
• How do people solve problems in the
• Is the company innovative? How?
• Support for professional growth?
– Education Reimbursement
– Additional Responsibilities
• Rate of turnover?
Questions to Ask
• Employee morale?
• Style of dress?
• Length of work day?
• Support for work/life balance?
• Ease and frequency of communication
• Why is there an opening? What happened with
the person who previously had my position?
Words that might describe an
A Few Statistics!
• Small firms – 52% of sales
• 50% of private sector output
• Small business exports 96% of all US
• Small business receives 35% of all federal
• In 2007 there were an estimated 21.7
Department of Labor
& US Census
Contractor vs Consultant
• Specific Skill or
• Limited Focus
• Work at the
direction of others
• Fills skills void
• Strategic /
• Advise and provide
direction on effort
• Multiple Projects at
• Independent Contractor OR Service
• You are the PRODUCT
• Price your PRODUCT
• Conduct Market Research
• Market the PRODUCT
“Pros” & “Cons”
• Preview multiple
• Pay per hour
• No benefits
• No job security
Assemble Your Career Plan
• List of STRENGTHS
• List of Accomplishments that show
• List of Transferable Skills
• List of Occupations and Job Titles
• List of Company’s who HIRE those jobs
Assemble Your Career Plan
• Training/Education Plan
• Detail Job Application
• Job Search Tracker
• Setup File System
• Bounce Back St. Louis: Bouncebackstl.org
• MERIC (MO Economic Research and
Information Center): Missourieconomy.org
• Bureau of Labor Statistics: Bls.org
• Illinois WorkNet