Career Management Strategies

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Career Management Strategies

  1. 1. Career Management Strategies © 2003 Jim Molloy Organizational Development, Talent Development Professional, and Coach Independent Contractor,Customized Solutions Phone: 717 781 4880 Email: j.molloy@live.com Career Management Strategies © 2003 1
  2. 2. Table of Contents Career Management Strategies ....................................................................................................... 3 Approaching The Job Market ......................................................................................................... 4 Work History: Starting Your Resume............................................................................................. 5 Sample Resume ............................................................................................................................... 6 What Are Your Interests? ............................................................................................................... 7 Networking ..................................................................................................................................... 8 Creating Your Contact List ............................................................................................................. 9 Networking Questions .................................................................................................................. 11 Developing Your Story ................................................................................................................. 12 Interviewing and Follow-up .......................................................................................................... 13 References ..................................................................................................................................... 15 Action Verbs ................................................................................................................................. 16 Appendix ........................................................................................................................................ 1 Contact Worksheet .......................................................................................................................... 1 My Career Path Worksheet ............................................................................................................. 2 Career Management Strategies © 2003 2
  3. 3. Career Management Strategies “If you don’t know where you are going, any road will take you there.” Introduction -Cheshire Cat, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland Managing your career is a life skill, not a luxury. Sure, some people just fall into a dream job, or so they say. Most people get the job of their choice because they know what they want, and they are not afraid to go after it. If you do your research, have a plan, and use your resources, you will succeed in finding a job that meets your career goals. Today’s Agenda is as follows: Agenda Objectives Approaching The Job Market Work History Developing Your Story 60 Second Commercial Networking/Creating Your Contact List First, you need to uncover your interests. Then, you need to talk to a lot of Planning Your Career people to figure out if they know of jobs that meet your interests. Next, you need to talk to people that are in the jobs that have your interests to validate whether or not the job still meets your interests, and discuss their career path (how they got to where they are today). Finally, you need to talk to employers that have jobs that meet your interests. Discussing the career path that was followed by someone in your dream job is Identifying Your Career a good place to start. However, the market changes constantly, and yesterday’s career path for your dream job may be different in today’s job Path market. Developing your career path is a hypothesis, an educated guess as to what you need to do to get to the job of your dreams. Use the worksheet in the Appendix of this guide to get you started. Write down your ideal job on the far right hand side of the paper. Working backwards, write down each job complete with the skills you will need to get the next job in your path until you get to where you are today. This exercise takes quite a bit of time. However, the more people you meet with in your desired career, the less time it will take you to identify your ideal career path. Career Management Strategies © 2003 3
  4. 4. Approaching The Job Market Did you know that 75% to 80% of all job openings are never advertised? The Introduction job market consists of both visible and hidden jobs. It is essential to a successful career search campaign that you approach both. Contact with many people will lead you to the job offer you ultimately accept. Networking / Face-toFace Face-to-face contact is the most valuable form of interaction because it is Contact more difficult for the person to reject you (hanging up the phone, answering letters, etc.). Therefore, the more people you talk to, and meet with, the sooner you will arrive at your final destination: gainful employment. Advertised jobs offer a highly competitive source of employment leads Employment Ads (Classified Ads, Monster.com, etc.). However, 75-150 applicants answer the average employment ad. Why is this a problem? The person screening resumes is not in a position to make a hiring decision and read through every resume. Their job is to reduce the pile of candidates to about 10 potential candidates for every position by eliminating as many resumes as possible. Therefore, you need to make sure when you do respond to an employment ad, that you put your best foot forward. Responding to an employment ad should always include a cover letter and Responding to Employment resume. The cover letter should highlight your understanding of the company’s needs, and how you are uniquely qualified to help. Ads A resume provides the potential employer with a synopsis of your skills and The Resume work history and should be kept to one page. Because you are limited to one page, you may need to tailor your resume to highlight your skills that meet the needs of each company and job. Not only do you need to provide a cover letter that is tailored to the specific job, but you should tailor your resume as well. Career Management Strategies © 2003 4
  5. 5. Work History: Starting Your Resume The resume is a synopsis of your work history, including your achievements Introduction and the impact you have had during your career. There are two resumes that are common in today’s job market: Chronological and Functional. Chronological resumes show the timeline of your work history. Functional resumes explain your knowledge, skills and abilities. Chronological resumes are preferred by most employers because they are easier to read, and communicate all of the aspects of previous and current employment. First, write down your current employer and job title in the space provided Employment History below: Employer Name: _______________ Job Title: ________________ Next, refer to the Action Verbs section of this guide on page 14 and circle five action verbs that relate to your current job and write them in the spaces provided below: 1. _______________ 2. _______________ 3. _______________ 4. _______________ 5. _______________ Finally, starting with the action verb, write a sentence regarding your job. Creating your resume starts by writing your employment history, then Creating Your Resume organizing all of your information on a single page. Information you should consider providing include: An objective, a background summary, educational background, and any specialized or computer related skills. There is a sample resume on the next page, and most software programs have easy to use resume templates. Career Management Strategies © 2003 5
  6. 6. Sample Resume The sample resume provided below is an example of a chronologically Sample Resume formatted resume. However, you will want to customize the format to fit your personality, career goals, and aligned with each opportunity you seek. LIBBY WILLIAMSON 6113 Southgate Drive Boston, MA 02745 lwilliamson@yahoo.com (617) 555-1212 ________________________________________________________________________ OBJECTIVE: To secure an position in a small to medium-sized human services organization.  BACKGROUND: Highly motivated, detail oriented professional with experience in accounts receivable, securities processing and customer service.  Proficient in operation of 10-key adding machine.  Strong interpersonal and organizational skills.  Typing speed: 50+ with high degree of accuracy. WORK EXPERIENCE: Genesis National Bank, Boston, MA 08/91 - 05/94 ACCOUNTING CLERK  Performed record keeping, payment processing and account reconciliation pertaining to international security trades and cash trades in a high volume environment.  Coordinated transaction processing information and related account data with affiliated French bank daily.  Maintained high level of accuracy while consistently meeting strict deadlines on a daily basis. EDUCATION: Elizabeth Brant School of Business, Boston, MA 09/73 - 08/76 SECRETARIAL DIPLOMA Degree: 1976  COMPUTER SKILLS: Corel WordPerfect  Microsoft Word  Microsoft Windows 2000, and XP  Microsoft Excel  Microsoft Power Point REFERENCES: Furnished upon request. Career Management Strategies © 2003 6
  7. 7. What Are Your Interests? Well, what are your interests? One of the most successful ways to uncover Introduction your ideal job is to identify your interests, including likes and dislikes about previous jobs. Then, when you set up meetings to talk to people about potential careers, you can ask them whether or not the job fits your criteria. For example, if you like organizing things you can ask, “How much of this job involves organizing, and project management?” You may want to use a separate piece of paper for this exercise. List the information in any order, just write down everything you can think of at first. Then, rank each of the items in order of importance in the spaces provided below. What didn’t 1 ____________________ 6 ____________________ you like about 2 ____________________ 7 ____________________ your previous 3 ____________________ 8 ____________________ job that you 4 ____________________ 9 ____________________ want to avoid in 5 ____________________ 10 ____________________ your next job? 1 ____________________ 6 ____________________ What did you really like 2 ____________________ 7 ____________________ about your 3 ____________________ 8 ____________________ previous job? 4 ____________________ 9 ____________________ 5 ____________________ 10 ____________________ 1 ____________________ 6 ____________________ What do you want to be 2 ____________________ 7 ____________________ included in 3 ____________________ 8 ____________________ your next job? 4 ____________________ 9 ____________________ 5 ____________________ 10 ____________________ Career Management Strategies © 2003 7
  8. 8. Networking Networking is the single most important skill to a successful job search. Introduction The goal of networking is to meet enough people to identify a person or Goal persons that are able to provide you with first hand information regarding a career or company where you have an interest. The first step in successful networking is to develop a contact list. This list is Developing Your Contact essentially everyone and anyone that is willing to talk to you. If you are List planning to talk to people for information about a company or career, first make it clear you are asking for their insights, not a job. Anyone can be a contact. Think of everyone you know or have met at one time or another. Use the form on the next page to get started. Then, as you make contact with these people and have a conversation, remember to ask who else they know you should meet. Pretty soon, you will have hundreds of people to call on to help you in your quest. There is a Contact Network Sheet for your use in the Appendix of this reference guide. Using your contact list involves writing to and calling friends, acquaintances, Using Your Contact List and strangers. Generally, you will not ask them for a job, but simply that they allow you to meet with them to discuss your present situation, to receive their advice. Before you make your first call be prepared to state your present situation, Making Contact what you are asking for, and make it clear that the meeting will be at his or her convenience, and you have no expectations of a job offer, you are simply trying to learn from their knowledge of your chosen career field. Be sure to open your conversation by mentioning the name of the person referring you. Also, when contacting people by telephone, always ask if it is a good time to talk. If the person says no, find out when it would be a good time to meet. For example, “Mr. Smith, this is Michael Somerset, your friend Julie Jones suggested I give you a call, is this a good time to talk?” Career Management Strategies © 2003 8
  9. 9. Creating Your Contact List Your objective is to develop a list of as many people you can contact as Introduction possible, regardless of whether or not you believe they will help you find the job of your dreams. Write the names of at least 10 people you can contact in each of the categories below. 1 ____________________ 6 ____________________ Coworkers 2 ____________________ 7 ____________________ 3 ____________________ 8 ____________________ 4 ____________________ 9 ____________________ 5 ____________________ 10 ____________________ 1 ____________________ 6 ____________________ Friends 2 ____________________ 7 ____________________ 3 ____________________ 8 ____________________ 4 ____________________ 9 ____________________ 5 ____________________ 10 ____________________ 1 ____________________ 6 ____________________ Family 2 ____________________ 7 ____________________ 3 ____________________ 8 ____________________ 4 ____________________ 9 ____________________ 5 ____________________ 10 ____________________ 1 ____________________ 6 ____________________ Neighbors 2 ____________________ 7 ____________________ 3 ____________________ 8 ____________________ 4 ____________________ 9 ____________________ 5 ____________________ 10 ____________________ 1 ____________________ 6 ____________________ Classmates / Alumni 2 ____________________ 7 ____________________ 3 ____________________ 8 ____________________ 4 ____________________ 9 ____________________ 5 ____________________ 10 ____________________ Continued on next page Career Management Strategies © 2003 9
  10. 10. Creating Your Contact List, Continued 1 ____________________ 6 ____________________ Teachers / Professors 2 ____________________ 7 ____________________ 3 ____________________ 8 ____________________ 4 ____________________ 9 ____________________ 5 ____________________ 10 ____________________ 1 ____________________ 6 ____________________ Employers (Current and 2 ____________________ 7 ____________________ Former) 3 ____________________ 8 ____________________ 4 ____________________ 9 ____________________ 5 ____________________ 10 ____________________ Career Management Strategies © 2003 10
  11. 11. Networking Questions Here are some questions to ask the person you meet with when you have an Informational Interview opportunity to meet with someone that is working in your desired field or Questions position: How did you first enter this field? How did you prepare yourself to work in this field? What did you do before you worked in this field? What do you like most about working in this field? What do you find most challenging about working in this profession? What could I do to prepare myself for this type of career? What books or references would you recommend to someone interested in this field? Are there any professional associations that people in this field join to learn and share information? What courses, seminars or other learning experiences would be especially helpful for acquiring the skills needed to increase my chances of entering into this field as a future career? Where do you feel this field is headed, and what could potential job- seekers do to take advantage of those opportunities? Which of your colleagues would it be particularly useful for me to talk to about a career in this field? Career Management Strategies © 2003 11
  12. 12. Developing Your Story Storytelling is one of the oldest and most effective ways of communicating Introduction information. Your story will help you to uniquely position yourself among other job candidates in the market. Good stories, answers the questions: Who? What? When? Where? Why?, and How? Having your stories prepared in advance align well with today’s behavioral Why Prepare and Tell interviewing techniques used by most recruiters. Although not all companies Stories? use behavioral interviewing techniques, you will be prepared to share your accomplishments in a tangible and meaningful way. What three or four achievements are you most proud of? Include your Step One academic and work experience? First Achievement Second Achievement Third Achievement Develop your story to show people listening how you made a difference. Step Two During an actual interview, you can use your stories to highlight your skills, and then put your story in context with the interviewers business needs. Here are some questions to think about: What problems did I deal with? What actions did I take? What were the results? First Achievement Second Achievement Third Achievement Career Management Strategies © 2003 12
  13. 13. Interviewing and Follow-up Contrary to popular belief, interviewing is not an interrogation - Interviewing Introduction is a two-way dialog. The interviewer wants to know if you are capable of meeting the needs of the job based on your behavior during past experiences. When answering interview questions, elaborate, tell a story about how you have handled similar situations in the past, then follow up with questions of your own to maintain a two-way dialog of sharing and learning. The following four skills are necessary to have an effective interview. Listening Questioning Paraphrasing Summarizing Closing While listening, convey to the interviewer that you are really listening Listening through verbal, vocal and non-vocal means. Leaning forward, and nodding your head in agreement are two non-verbal means of acknowledging you understand what the interviewer is saying. Use open ended questions or questions that cannot easily be answered by a Questioning “yes” or “no.” These types of questions will show the interviewer you are interested and want to learn as much as you can about the position, and company. For example: “What was it about my background that interested you in speaking with me?” “What do you think most employees like about working here?” “What qualities will a candidate need to successfully fill this role?” “What are some of the challenges a person would face in this position?” “How often would the person in this position be evaluated?” “What opportunities for advancement exist for a person in this position?” Good candidates “play back” what the interviewer is asking or stating to Paraphrasing make sure both people are in agreement. Basically, you are repeating what was said, and then looking for verbal or non-verbal agreement to confirm understanding. Continued on next page Career Management Strategies © 2003 13
  14. 14. Interviewing and Follow-up, Continued During and especially at the end of the interview, it is critical for you to Summarizing summarize the needs you have heard by the interviewer. After summarizing the needs and qualifications for the job, you want to make sure the interviewer has no other questions. During the close of the interview you want to summarize all of the business Closing needs shared by the employer during the interview. After you have summarized all of the key points, ask the interviewer what they feel are the top three things a successful candidate will need to accomplish in the first 3-6 months on the job. After the interviewer has summarized the top three points, it is your turn to restate how your knowledge and background match up to their top three needs. Here you will need to cite examples (these are examples you have probably already presented during the interview, but discuss them anyway). Finally, you need to bring closure to the interview and this can be done with two simple questions. 1. What other questions do you have about my background? 2. Is there anything about my background that would cause you to hesitate in hiring me for this position? The follow-up letter or thank-you note gives you a final opportunity to Thank You Letter reiterate your interests in the job position highlighting their needs and your unique qualifications. The follow-up letter can also give you a chance to present any information you may not have had time to discuss. After a week to ten days have gone by, if you have not received a formal Follow-Up response regarding your interview, follow-up with a courtesy call. Always keep the tone of your voice up-beat, and your message positive. Your message should emphasize your excitement and qualifications to fill the role and make a positive contribution to their company. Career Management Strategies © 2003 14
  15. 15. References Employers will usually ask for references if they are seriously interested in Introduction making a hiring decision. It is very important that you have a list of references you provide. Generally, employers will ask for professional references, these people you have worked with. Sometimes, prospective employers will ask for personal references as well. Developing a list of three to six professional and personal references will have you well prepared for the next step in the interview process. The information needed on your references is very basic. Reference Information Name Business/Home Address City/State/Zip Code Email Address Best Times to Reach Best Method of Contact Occupation/Title Telephone Number Relation To You The reference sheet should be typewritten on a separate piece of paper for you to hand to the interviewer upon request. After you interview with a prospective employer, if you have been asked to Preparing References provide references, it is common courtesy to contact each reference to let them know they may receive a letter or phone call. Make sure you send a personal thank-you note to each of your references. Thanking References Career Management Strategies © 2003 15
  16. 16. Action Verbs accomplished achieved addressed administered advised allocated answered appeared applied appointed appraised approved arranged assessed assigned assumed assured audited awarded bought briefed broadened brought built cataloged caused changed chaired clarified classified closed collected combined commented communicated compared compiled completed computed conceived conducted conceptualized considered consolidated constructed consulted contracted controlled converted coordinated corrected counseled counted created dealt decided defined delegated delivered demonstrated described designed determined developed devised diagnosed directed discussed distributed documented doubled drafted earned edited effected eliminated endorsed enlarged enlisted ensured established estimated evaluated examined executed expanded expedited experienced explained explored expressed extended filed filled financed focused forecast formulated founded gathered generated granted guided handled helped identified implemented improved incorporated increased indexed initiated influenced innovated inspected installed instituted instructed insured interpreted interviewed introduced invented invested investigated involved issued joined kept launched learned leased lectured led licensed listed logged made maintained managed matched measured mediated met modified monitored motivated moved navigated negotiated observed operated ordered organized oversaw participated perceived performed persuaded planned prepared presented processed procured programmed prohibited projected promoted proposed provided published purchased pursued qualified questioned raised ranked rated realized received recommended reconciled recorded recruited redesigned reduced regulated rehabilitated related reorganized repaired replaced replied reported represented researched resolved responded restored revamped reviewed revise saved scheduled selected served serviced set set up shaped shared showed simplified sold solved sorted sought sparked specified spoke staffed started streamlined strengthened stressed stretched structured studied submitted substituted succeeded suggested summarized superseded supervised surveyed systematized tackled targeted taught terminated tested took toured traced tracked traded trained transferred transcribed transformed translated transported traveled treated trimmed tripled turned tutored umpired uncovered understood understudied unified unraveled updated upgraded used utilized verbalized verified visited waged weighed widened won worked wrote Career Management Strategies © 2003 16
  17. 17. Appendix Contact Worksheet Remember, networking is not about finding people that can get you a job, it is about talking to people about their Introduction insights on how to learn more about jobs, the job market, and companies of interest. Keep track of the people you contact, and the outcome. It is also a good idea to Name Phone Number Date Contacted Results Performance Consulting Solutions © 2003 Career Management Strategies 1
  18. 18. My Career Path Worksheet My Next Step is: My Ideal Job is: Skills I will need: My First Step is: Skills I will need: Skills I will need: My Next Step is: Skills I will need: My Next Step is: My Next Step is: Skills I will need: Skills I will need: Performance Consulting Solutions © 2003 Career Management Strategies 2

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