Thursday, December 29, 2011

New Years

2012 is almost here. What plans have you made? For some, they will stay home and ring the new year in quietly. Others may go out and party with the masses. No matter how you celebrate the new year will arrive.
A new year is a great reason to see the positive side to this dilemma you are traveling through. It's a new year, it is crispy and fresh out there. A great time to come up with new ideas of how to approach your search. Find new places to meet new people. Think of new occupations that may appeal to you and you can fit into. The world is at your feet, it is up to you to capture the moment.

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Christmas eve

Here it is Christmas Eve and the present you wanted didn't seem to materialize. Maybe the fact is it just hasn't come in yet. Maybe you didn't check the right locations. We can make many excuses or whine about it. Monday will be here before you know it and you can get back into gear. Count your blessings and contemplate your positive thoughts about where you might go, who you may talk with.

Say to yourself that "I will be successful when the time is right. I just need to talk to as many people as I can and get enough choices out there".

Monday, December 19, 2011


Listening has been a topic on a few occasions and for good reason. Whether you have your own business or are searching for that next opportunity your ability to listen well, not just hear, will lead you to more success. Many times as the other person talks we are thinking of a retort, answer or even a question. What you really want to do it to listen well first then digest what you heard and decide what you might ask or say. Sometimes that may even be a re-clarification from the other person so we are sure we are understanding what was said.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

What have you done well?

So many times we tend to dwell on what went wrong or how we screwed up. That is all fine and dandy and good in order to do it better the next time. Along with that attitude though comes a feeling of failure and even despair.

How about first looking at what you felt you did well, then look at how you could improve it the next time even you you felt it was good or even your best. The game is to constantly improve.

I heard a great reply to folks that say they are public speakers and Toastmasters can't help them. Until you are making $100,000.00 per speech there is still room for improvement.

Dwell on the positive!

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Look back

Time to reflect back on your achievements, wins, accomplishments. As the old adage goes we are our own worst critic. We sometimes dwell on what we do wrong. It is important to reflect on what we do well also. We actually aren't as bad as we think. We may not be getting the the results as fast as we want though.
When we look back and see what we did well we can take the good and discard that which didn't work this time.

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Don't relax now!

Sometimes we think that we will just take it easy at this time of year. Maybe no one is available to talk, they are busy, budgets aren't in effect yet and on and on. Some of these are true yet you still need to be out there. First to greet others and wish them well. Second to stay tuned up. Third you never know who or what opportunity you may uncover. Remember that opportunities don't always wait on non-holiday time.
You can layout for the balance of the year and even be making connections for the beginning of the new year. Lay out your networking events and invite others. It's not always just you, it should also be to help others too.

Monday, November 28, 2011


OK, you are stuffed, clothes feel tighter and let's hope you had some good visits with family and friends. Don't forget that turkey soup made from the leftover carcass is fantastic and fits the weather well.
Time to regroup now and plan your next plan on what is next. Where shall you go, who shall you see and what are you looking for. Are you still sure what you REALLY want to do? Continually challenge that thought. You have so many choices anymore.
The other morning a talk show host received a call from a listener. The caller said his friends all said he had the voice to be a radio talk show host and what might the current talk show host recommend he do to become involved. The host paused and thought then came back very loud, snappy and almost angry and spouted off that the listener should listen. He asked the listener if he was ready to listen. The caller agreed he was. The host then said just get out and start doing what was needed and not ask advice from others. He would fare far better as he went through the hoops and even makes a few mistakes. That definitely caught my attention as I hear folks wanting to have all the answers before stepping out and trying. We don't want to make mistakes. Good luck on that one.
Remember my mantra to: Have fun, Meet people, Learn something.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

To Resume or not to Resume

Resumes are a necessary evil. Most resumes I've ever looked at are an obituary. That is to say it tells what you have done in the past. What I want to know, if I am interviewing you is what are you going to do for me now. It can be hard to write a resume that fills in the info for each potential employer.
A better way is to see people in person and if they request a resume then ask them what they want to see in it and get it to them the next day. Craft it to fit their request. There is no doubt that you can't always do that but at least strive to.
Some common knowledge today is to be sure your resume contains specific info from the ad you may be responding too so if they are scanning you can at least be in the running.
Be sure you totally check for spelling and proper grammar.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Business cards

You have so many options anymore between: Calling cards, Business cards or Contact cards. Bottom line is you still need them. And remember to never leave home with out them. Keep a supply in the car too.

Be careful about putting a job title on your card because Administrative Assistant at one employer may not be the same at another one. You want to have a card to share with others so they can contact if they need to or want to. Your new social networking sources (LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter etc.) are excellent locations to house your contacts and others do this too. Cards just make it easier for people to remember.

When first starting out my suggestion is you get 500 because the first 250 disappear very fast. Always be thinking about your "branding" so as you reorder you may want to include a logo or something for others to remember you by.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Turning leaves

As the leaves are turning Fall colors then painting the landscape in their annual "fall" the question arises if you are also turning a new leaf now in your search. Are you looking for more new opportunities to network, gain useful information and meet new people? If you don't change a few of your old ways it could delay your success. This is the value to getting out with numerous groups to give you new ideas to try out.

When you get out of the house and Have fun, meet people and learn something you may well feel renewed again. Go ahead, give it a try.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Veteran's Day

Veteran's Day is just around the corner. Many men and women gave of themselves so we could have our freedom and opportunities to do as we please. Your job is to make the most of it as hard as it may seem. One theme I continually hear from immigrants is the freedom and opportunity we have here compared to much of the rest of the world.
You now have the world within your hands. Maybe not the opportunity or full time position you want but you still have the ability to make things happen. Depends on what you may be ready to give up or trade for.
Sometimes you may need to consider your own business or even doing several positions until there is a demand for your skills. Always keep your eyes and ears available for ideas and suggestions.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Keeping up the pursuit

By now you have felt a chill in the air. sometimes you may even be thinking of just sleeping in because it is warmer under the covers. It is OK to think about it but don't succumb to such thoughts. Now is the time to stay active, use your schedule and be productive for yourself. You are in a competitive sport known as "job finding" and only when you score the highest will you find and feel success.
You need to be setting your calendar all the time. Filling it with appointments, interviews and networking. Share yours with others and you will find others will share with you. You will soon find that you are running out of time and even begin enjoying this part of unemployment. It is at that time you will come to understand my mantra even better: "Have fun, Meet people, Learn something".
Remember, my main suggestion and urging to you is to get your butt out of the house.

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Are you helping others?

At this time in your life, when all seems so bleak, dark and inhospitable it may be hard to think of others much less help them. Yet in reality when you do this, helping others, you will find a return to you far in excess of money or leads. The elated feeling you get will assist you in keeping that positive attitude. Remember that positive, upbeat attitude you emulate will be seen by others a someone they may want on their team. It is hard to buy that but you can certainly give it.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

How can this be better?

Sometimes in an interview we are faced with questions that deal with " would you change this?..." At this point we begin contemplating what we've heard and try to make quick decisions about what specific changes we would make if we were in that position.  A goal here is to stay positive and look for ways to improve the situation. Sometimes that could require terminating someone, yet we need to look beyond that obvious answer in light to first make sure they are sitting in the chair that best fits them. If they aren't we may want to see if another slot is a better fit and if not then the obvious is obvious.
When we can keep a positive attitude and give positive input others are quick to see you are thinking on your feet. Of course when you deliver such solutions be sure you speak with confidence, not just reciting answers.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Have you found your costume yet?

Halloween is just around the corner you know. In my day we never bought costumes, we made them from whatever we could find around the house or neighborhood. We didn't have the money to buy one anyway. When I ask my children why they'd buy one when they could make one and have a family project they just roll their eyes at me and go about their business. It takes too much time, cheaper to buy it, can't be bothered etc...etc.
We are lacking creativity or gumption or maybe it is a feeling it won't be as good as the store bought one. The kids miss out too.
Use some creativity on your resumes, your introduction of yourself, where you look for possible opportunities, what events you attend. Take a new look once in a while as you never know what you might learn. You may even learn some things you won't do again.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Are you too busy to meet me?

When someone suggests a meeting and you find your calendar packed full what do you do. We want to sound busy so it sounds cool to have a full calendar. Have you ever noticed that extremely busy folks seems to be able to add one more meeting to their list. Sometimes this is the inability to say no. Yet some folks are able to pull it off. Before saying you are too busy why not ask a few more questions and see how the two of you can arrange a meeting. Always being open to meet  others can be to your  advantage in the future.
Just think about it.

Friday, October 7, 2011

Are you in tune with your audience?

Sometimes we enter into a conversation or an interview without full knowledge of the other party. We might surmise they are looking at the topic from our perspective. We may need to listen to be sure we are in tune so we can speak from a common ground. Not to assuage them but be sure we are in total understanding. We don't always have to agree from another's viewpoint but we can speak intelligently about it.
Listening is the operative word here.

Saturday, October 1, 2011


We are all leaders in one manner or another. In the business world sometimes it was known as "management" yet the best Managers were the best leaders. How did this happen? There are thousands of books to describe and discuss this.
Great leaders listen well, read a lot and pay attention to people. Work on being a better leader or even better be the Best leader you can be. See what happens to you.

Monday, September 26, 2011


Listening has been a topic before and it arises again. It seems everything we do has a connection to listening somewhere. Whether it be parents, children, work, play and the list goes on. When we don't "listen" we easily miss key elements of and in life. Sometimes the consequences are catastrophic yet many times they aren't that bad.
No matter the consequence we need to be better listeners which in turn works to our benefit. If you really want to "learn" how to listen better then be sure and visit a local Toastmasters group.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Are you ready for Fall?

What is the difference in the seasons and your opportunity searching? We can go either way on this one. We can talk about changing weather, i.e. rain, snow, mud, cold etc. and all the reasons it may be harder now. We can also talk about a new season and a new attitude with the ability to dress differently.
In fact we can use any old excuse to either do well or not so well. Your job is to pick yourself up, smile and get busy once again. Remember to have fun, meet people and learn something. Get out there and network and see people. Help others in any way you can. Find new venues to visit and new people to meet.
You have so many possibilities that you have no excuse.
Now go out and have a wonderful day.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Where are you looking?

To begin with one can scour the Sunday paper, it is certainly and excellent way to give you ideas. Bulletin boards and companies websites are great. You can also talk to friends and people you meet while networking. One of the inherent values of networking.
An important piece here is to be sure to be forming personal relationships with folks. The more you know about the others the more help you can be to them.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Labor Day

OK...Labor Day has come and gone now. Time for you to start your labor(ing). As depressing as it may feel sometimes you still need to get out there and be productive. If you don't who will? Exactly, no one will be doing it for you and if they do/did they may not find you what you are really looking for.
Remember you want to be more than just an applicant, you need to stand out. How might you stand out? Think of the ways. It could be with a colorful outfit, crazy hairstyle, mumbling etc. Correct!!! That is not how you want to stand out. You need a compelling reason for them to hire you or even look at you.

Monday, September 5, 2011

Have you heard?

Have you heard that people are being hired and more are needed. It appears that besides the actual employers themselves hiring many of the temp agencies are hiring. For those need immediate cash flow it may of benefit to check them out. Checking out temp. agencies is no different that interviewing for an opportunity (job), so be sure you check them all out. Many have temp to hire positions.

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Selling vs. networking

While watching folks network the other morning it became obvious again of how many people are doing more selling, of their attributes, than networking. Understanding the need to plug that cash flow drain I'm not sure it is as effective as pure networking first. We need to build those personal relationships first and let them muddle over your potential skills.
Through good listening skills and learning more about them they will in turn learn about you and not feel the pressure of being sold to.
Keep in mind that when attending a networking event you should be paying attention of how you might be able to assist others. When you run across what you consider possibilities for yourself then ask for another meeting.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011


What might power washing have in common with searching for your next opportunity in your career path? As I was out cleaning the driveway, in total captivation because will come close, I find myself thinking about anything and everything. Going back and forth reminds me of the job search and putting our plan together and executing it. As I wash the driveway I find my plan is to go back and forth in perfect paths to clean. The truth is that sometimes I get a little off course and of course have to go back over my path and fix the area I missed.
That happens to you also when you don't quite execute as you should and you have to correct and maybe even go back. If life was so predictable and perfect it wouldn't be much fun nor learning. We go through life learning and making corrections all the time to get to where we are going. Why would it be any different in the opportunity searching business.

Friday, August 19, 2011

How do you find your leads?

If you sold insurance or financial products you can buy a list to contact. In the job/opportunity world you pretty much have to develop your own list. Nothing says you can't use others to help you do this. Everyone you come into contact is a potential source of assistance. Never overlook all your potential team helpers. Listening will greatly increase your ability to have more successes.
Leads are everywhere you go, right in front of you so keep your eyes and ears open.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Job titles

Sometimes it seems we get hung up on job titles. Either what we have done in the past or what we are looking for now. The same title today can have numerous definitions so don't get to hung up on nomenclature. You would actually be better off to make up your own title and give definition to it. That way potential employers may be interesting in learning more about what it means.
Your passion about getting something done, handling the projects etc. are more important than job titles.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Is it warm enough for you yet?

Not the weather, I'm sure it is warm enough for you by now. Are you making enough contacts, seeing plenty of people, helping others. Is your calendar so full it seems you can't keep up? Why not? You will find the busier you keep yourself the more effective you will be. Idleness can be too much of a distraction. No getting around the fact that we feel idleness is better than rejection. Each rejection leads to more knowledge and you are closer to acceptance.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Have you ever?

.been distressed over no replies back to you?
..been let down when you received a "thank you but no thank you"?
...can't seem to find folks that will agree to an informational interview?
....get two offers for different positions about the same time?
.....been tired of the rat race and rejection?

You can list numerous other depressing occasions you have experienced. No one ever guaranteed this would be either easy or fun for you. This would be a great time to connect with friends, whether employed or not, just to talk and vent. Of course be fair and ask for extra time and let them know they needn't have the answers only to allow you to vent. This also allows you to grieve. It is also a good time to give back, help others and get the focus off you. Sometimes when we help others we also can see that we don't have it as bad as we thought.
Think positive.

Saturday, July 30, 2011


Grieving is a part of life that sometimes we try to avoid. Yet unknown to us, at the time, ignoring it only causes more trouble now or later. There are certain parts of life that are very traumatic to us. Like birth and death so is losing our employment. Whether you are new to unemployment or been there for a while you need to remember to continue to grieve.
Grieving comes in many forms of which two seem most prevalent, crying and talking. If you are talking about your experience do remember to give your listener advance warning so they don't tell you they have to leave because they really do. You may feel rejected just when you don't need it. All you want them to do is listen to you, not give you solution because you actually have them already.

Monday, July 25, 2011

20 free videos on unemployment

If you haven't been to the Job Finders Support Group website you may want to check out the offer of 20 free videos to help you through this segment of your career search. Nothing is being harvested and no spam will be forth coming.

These are 20 two to four minute videos to help you along. Go ahead and check it out.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011


Where do you hang out and do networking? Anywhere out of the house is a good place. The house usually has too many distractions. Coffee shops have become a favorite place to go. Have you done this? If not why not? If so then are you finding new ones to go to? Pick several and rotate them. Besides coffee shops there are numerous spots to go to and network though. There are events, training seminars, trade shows, business fairs and the list goes on.

Your local papers have calendars as does your local Chamber of Commerce. Ask friends and people you've met for ideas. This isn't just about you, talk and ask others. This is a team effort.

Friday, July 15, 2011


While listening to a radio talk show and hearing them discussing the possibility of schools eliminating cursive writing and proper spelling it got me to thinking. What is wrong with the inability to spell correctly? Like speaking it can be the distractions that make the audience either not listen and lose track of where you are.
When we read anything and run across improperly spelled words we stop for a split second and may lose our spot or what we were reading. Even some folks that can't spell very well know when a word is spelled wrong and may also stop.

Be sure any correspondence you send out has been checked for proper spelling.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Solving problems or creating a future

Are you just solving problems or are you creating a future. We need to put out the fires and we also need to be creating the future. Business survives by good work, excellent customer service and growing. The growing could be products or services offered or improved products or services. Either way we don't want to be static.
When you get stumped or down in that hole get together with friends and/or acquaintances. Sit and brainstorm and create some new ideas and ways to achieve your goals. You may also have the opportunity to help your friend(s).

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Summer time

By now you are probably enjoying Summer one way or another. Let's not be persistent in that search for what is next for you. When we take a well deserved break for a little too long we tend to lose momentum. So don't take too long a break. Keep those finders in the mix and always working forward.
As Summer heats up so should your search. Laying the ground work for the future. Even if you find THE spot never stop looking.

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Social Media 2

No one has time to partake in social media. Yet business and professionals are finding it is the wave of the future. The longer you wait to make time to at least begin to know more about it and how it works may just slow down your own progress.

One needs to make time for anything we want to do as we all have plenty to fill out our days. Your ability to learn new ways to do things can be an asset to you!

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Social Media 1

By now you have learned that this "Social Media" thing isn't going to go away. Actually it will grow, morph and even come up with many new ideas. Trying to avoid it might become a waste of your own time.
There are numerous classes and people that teach this now. Cost varies from nothing to way more than you want to pay. The game is to become familiar with it. You don't want to be left in the dust. All the social media tools are changing daily so the sooner you become familiar with them the easier you will have it.

It isn't magic and by becoming proliferate won't guarantee you your next opportunity but it will put you ahead of the pack.
Get busy and begin by looking at LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter for starters.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

You don't know what you don't know!

You don't know what you don't know! Yes sir, that's a fact. While sharing with a friend the other day we got on the above topic. It is simply amazing how we many times we have no idea of what we don't know. Such as how we come across in an interview. We may feel we did just fine only to realize later that maybe we didn't.

How to overcome this dilemma? Get out and see other people. Continue your learning mode. Read books of almost any genre. Join Toastmasters for sure. You will learn far more about yourself at Toastmasters that you ever thought of.
Not knowing is not a crime but may hold you back from your success much longer than you wanted.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Do you really know what you want to do?

So many times folks begin looking for what they have always done in the past only to find out that isn't their true love. It is because they have done it and can continue doing it. As time moves forward some will realize their are other occupations or careers that may fit them better then the task is to see what transferable skills they have.

If you have any doubt about what you want to do you may want to spend a little time investigating, taking to others and reading as you determine your next path in your career walk.

Monday, June 13, 2011

Have you heard the Economy is picking up?

Yes it is.....although it has for some time now. What is even more positive is peoples attitudes about what is going on. Something I have noticed is more people, including newscasters, newspapers and postings on the web are mostly positive. Sometimes even the politicians pipe in.
Does this mean the downturn is over? Not in my opinion. We have more hurdles to jump over and we have been learning new ways to jump them. That is in part why people are going back to work.
They are researching companies and finding out where they need help or could improve with changes. You are out there being productive again rather than just being an "applicant".
You've also noted that more people are going into their own businesses, not a bad idea.
You'll find that the more positive your attitude the better the outlook seems to be.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

What are your leadership skills?

Leadership is a skill that we are all aware of. There are many interpretations by many people. A most common one is that a leader is the "Boss" or the person that is in charge of the operation. While this is true, leaders do far more than that. Actually leading an operation is a function of "management". Not all managers are leaders or at least good ones. Many leaders are managers and do superfluous job.

Most of us have been and are leaders in some manner. Parents in the home are leaders, and yes some aren't so good at it. We have leaders in church besides the pastor. A great leader will empower others to rise to their greatest potential.

Your ability to be a leader is incumbent on your good listening skills, ability to find solutions whether they are your own or someone else's. You may not always be the boss but you'll fare far better when you know what is expected and you work to make your up line shine.

Leadership skills are essential to all of us, just be cognizant and learn more about them.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

"The Art of Reticulation or Networking 102"

The art of networking can be an art, yet all of you have been doing it all your life. The main criteria would be to remember that it isn't about you, it is about the other person. Learn something about them, build a personal relationship in a short amount of time. You might ask "What is a personal relationship?" That can have a few answers so I'll elaborate.
Getting to know a little about the person, outside of work, is a good thing. That can encompass where they came from, why did they move here, have they traveled elsewhere before, where they went to school and on and on. Good questioning comes from good listening. When you truly listen to the other person you'll pick up many ideas. Good listening means you don't have an agenda to tell them something or sell them something. It means to get to know just a little bit more about them and personalize your knowledge about them.
Not only is thins interesting it is also learning. Try it soon.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Oh no! The sun is coming out.

That's right, the sun is out more now and you'd rather go out and enjoy it. Whether that means playing your favorite sport, sun bathing, tanning or just seeing more folks out there.
There is no reason that you shouldn't enjoy it, just incorporate it in your searching opportunities. Get out there and continue seeing people, and at the same time soaking up the sun. You may deviate from full time searching but you will find ways to include it in your dawdling.

Vitamin D from the sun is good for you also. As hard as it may feel along with being discouraged you'll want to be using your time wisely at finding folks to communicate and network with.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Are resumes out?

Not really! Resumes still serve a purpose to many and are continually requested. One caveat might be to not allow others to ask you to send a resume just to be rid of you. If they ask then you should ask what they want to see in it and what style.
The purpose of most resumes are to catch the other person's attention so you can garner an interview and get in front of someone.
Some professionals just don't like resumes because most resumes are an obituary, that is, here is what I have done. Yet most potential employers want to know what you can do for them now. When you make a resume be sure you have the very best there is to offer.
Remember that the reader needs to see a compelling reason to talk with you.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Where is the heart?

Who are the speakers that really catch your attention? What comedians make you laugh the most? What stories do you remember the most and longest?
I remember back in 1974 the company I worked for sent me to a business letter writing class. It was a day long class and I still remember the gentleman that taught it. It is hard to remember the whole class but I do remember him and the basic layout of a good business letter. Why do I remember him?
As he taught the class he told stories with a passion, a passion from his heart and I felt them. That has lasted me all these years.
As you interview and exchange stories with others they will remember you when you are passionate. Your passion needs to be heard first and that it turn will make it felt by them and you will be remembered.

Friday, May 20, 2011

"20 Must Watch Videos For The Recently Unemployed"

The Job Finders website has been updated with 20 videos. The videos run from two to four minutes each. Once you sign up you will receive one each day for 20 days.
The topics are from the book "The 50 Most Asked Questions From the Newly Unemployed" The purpose if to assist you to get back into the workforce.

There is no spamming or harvesting of the data, strictly as an aid for you.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Are you not getting any call backs?

Sometimes we put together great resumes, search for and send them out to appropriate potential employers, network in person and still no takers. What is the problem? Are there no positions available, are my skills no longer needed, people just don't like nor want me. What could it be? Maybe you haven't made enough changes, in yourself, to be attractive to a new employer or better yet opportunity. Have you ever thought that maybe it is you and your approach? Many people don't see it like that. We've gotten our education, have a great work history, love what we do and still no opportunities seem available. This is the value with meeting with other folks, both employed and unemployed. Get their views knowing some will have no feedback. Be sure you know your personal values, how they apply to what you love to do then begin professing that.

Friday, May 13, 2011

Fear of Failure

It is said that one huge reason we stagnate is because of the fear of failure. Rather than stretch and try something different we will do what we've always done. Our fear of failure weighs heavy on us. In turn it holds us back from doing what we could really do. At this time of your life, while you are planning on your next career, why not search yourself and be sure you are heading in the direction you really want to go. What will motivate you to aspire to and accomplish your real next goal? Don't worry what others think or even say to you. You should certainly listen to them but be careful on what directs your thinking. As they say, you can do whatever you set your mind to.

Monday, May 9, 2011

Who are you?

Have you figured out who you are yet? Do you know your purpose in life? Do you really know what you want to do? Don't feel alone. With all the opportunities it can be hard to pick what we want to do. You need to give serious thought to the first two questions. Much has been written about them and spoken about them. A lot on introspection comes into play here. One needs to contemplate them and make a serious effort to answer to one's self. A great place to assist here are Toastmaster Contests, at the club, Area, Division and District level. Your will get inspired and even motivated from a few of the speeches. Give it a try.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Who is holding you back?

Many times folks complain and/or blame others for their failures. It is easier that way. The list of reasons and excuses goes on forever. We seem to not within ourselves to see what part we play in this. That's not fun or comfortable.

The next time you hear someone blaming someone or something for them not being successful take a look and see if they may have played a role in their own failure.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Are you stretching your vocabulary?

Have you fallen back to the basic 600 words or so that we can fall back into? Many of us get lazy and continue to make shortcuts and easing our load, unconscientiously even. What is wrong with that. It limits the words we have and lends itself to repeating some of the same words over and over. The problem with that is it becomes a distraction to the listener. Doesn't matter if the listener has a trained ear or not, they notice something.

Wouldn't you rather the remember the good traits you have?

Some of the culprit words or phrases might be:

Give it some thought. If you feel you'd like to expand that vocabulary then why not come and visit a Toastmasters Club.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Flowers are springing up

The flowers have been popping up for a while now. It happens every year. Opportunities, like flowers, are all around us, we don't always see them for numerous reasons.
Remember that Ray Kroc used to sell milk shake machines. One day he saw the McDonald Brothers hamburger stand and thought if they'd just expand then he could sell more machines. The long short of it is he bought their name and proceeded with the expansion and the rest is history.
We must avail ourselves to listen and pay attention because you never know when that opportunity will rear it's head.

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Easter 2011

Happy Easter to all of you. Be sure you spend time with family and friends. You never know when one of them will come up with an idea for you to check out.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

I have an offer but am hoping for another more suitable opportunity.

This is the position you want to be in. "Two birds in the hand...". Of course it does create a dilemma of which place to take. After hours and days of research, networking, talking, personal relationship building and then interviewing you wind up with multiple employment offers.

What to do? Everyone arrives at their decision in their own way. Whether it be by salary, location, challenge, potential growth or you name it. The big issue is do you feel comfortable with the people and the position. Sometimes you need to listen to your intuition and allow it to assist you. Folks have come back and expressed their mistake for taking the most money only to find out they were not happy. Remember that one situation worse than being unemployed is not liking the position or the people.

It is up to you to balance this out and make your best decision. The worst that happens is it doesn't work out for any reason. The positive side to that outcome is you have another chance to re-invent yourself to your next being.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Where is the best place for me to do my networking?

The simple, actual, and short answer is: Everywhere! That's it for everyone. Remember that all your friends and family know many people in many careers. Each of those people know people and not all in the same profession. Don't get mired down in trying to only meet with people in your chosen profession, talk to everyone.

This is a numbers game and the more people you meet, make personal relationships with and most of all help will take you closer to your next opportunity.

When leaving the house my first goal is to have some fun. Then by listening well, people seem to lead me to the next question or idea. From there I may or may not suggest a connection. My big goal is to help those I can. I wind up networking anywhere, anytime.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Third, we finally make transformations

It always seems like so long when we are not being successful in our search for that next opportunity. Sometimes we feel like we are struggling yet at the same time we are making headway. As our changes and transitions continue some will fall into the category of transformations. Those items, actions and attitudes we now know work better.

As all of these culminate it seems all of a sudden we are getting more interviews and calls. Normally we don't reflect back as we just say " is about time..." As smart as we may be we do continue to learn and grow.

When folks return to the Support Group to thank the attendees, and give their learning experience, a common phrase is "Do you know when things began to change for me? It happened once I changed".

Nuff said

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Second, we make transitions

As we traverse the path of being successful in our search we will usually have made a few changes in how we go about this. When we find a new better way we incorporate it because it feels better. We continue on. Soon we realize this new change works better and is more successful for us. It now becomes a transition and is part of our repertoire.

We will make many changes and in turn some convert to transitions. There is no fixed number because just as snowflakes are all individual so are we.

We continue to do this and make more changes and transititions and in time some fall into the category of "transformations"

Sunday, April 3, 2011

First, we begin making changes

When that tragic day comes and we are no longer gainfully employed we ponder what to do. Our minds are filled with despair and joy all at the same time. First the cash flow has stopped yet on the other hand we are thinking of all the opportunities we'd love to take on.
We get busy and begin laying out our path to the next opportunity or position we'd like to take on. We then usually go through some unsuccessful attempts and regroup. Bottom line is we begin making some changes to our original plan to propel us to our next challenge and opportunity. We will make numerous changes to our behavior and attitude. Many we won't even recognize.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Did you see the sun?

Here it is, the end of March. We've seen some rain and sun and even a little snow this winter. What kind of weather makes you jubilant and happy? For many it is the sun and for others it may be rain or snow etc.
The question comes down to enjoying what you like when it appears and continuing your life when it isn't what you want. For if you love the sun and it becomes overcast or rainy we know it will change, just a matter of waiting.

When you are in your search for your next opportunity and it seems all you hear is "NO" remember that as you make the necessary changes, to yourself, and be persistent you will find success.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Age discrimination

Is there any age discrimination out there? Well Duh! The question is does it affect you? Many will say it does and it certainly feels that way. My first question is: If they are practicing age discrimination would you really want to work there? Then we get into all the discussion about it is against the law etc, to which I totally agree.
My original question should stand out to you and if you decide you wouldn't want to work there you are on the right track. Why you ask? Because if they really are discriminatory you will find they do other dumb things and you wouldn't be happy there. It will only be a matter of time until they fade away because of poor business practices.
If you want to sue them the big question to me is how much time do you have that you can devote to the process, it isn't fast and can cost a lot.

Bottom line to me is I'd rather devote my time and energy moving on with my life and being productive. They will go by the wayside in just a matter of time.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Can you say NO?

In conversing with a fellow Toastmaster the topic came up about a perfect opportunity(job) except the sensing from the interviewer. The interviewer seems very negative about their current team and was looking to hire a new person. This interview-ee was apprehensive and even became more nervous and didn't know why. With further discussion they realized their nervousness may have been due to the interviewers negative attitude. All of a sudden they saw the potential that this could affect them later on. Ergo the nervousness was about that "intuitive" feeling.

We need to pay attention to our "selves" as it can give off great tips and information. Without listening to those feelings you may wind up being that person taking the position, because it fulfilled our original goal of becoming re-employed, yet the fit wasn't right.

Therefore sometimes we may have to say no to the offer.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Tax time coming close now

Sometimes it always seems too close. In addition to being one of those "to do" items on your list it is an item that never seems to go away.

So goes the job of finding ones next opportunity in their career. Finding that right spot takes time, just like being sure you don't overlook your deductions. Some of us can do our own taxes and submit them. The advertisements allude to getting more back when using a consultant, tax advisor.

Should you pay for a coach then, same as an advisor. If you can find the money it can be a great boon. Someone that will point out your options plus advise on how to make it easier. One of my pieces of advise is for people to take at least a week, and two is even better, off right after the change in employment status. To clear your mind, get new ideas and meet up with old friends.

As you begin preparing your taxes consider the possibility of utilizing a coach. Most will meet for a brief time to discuss what they will do for their compensation. Your job is to listen carefully and ask questions.

Happy tax time.

Monday, March 14, 2011

You've been doing well this winter?

So winter is coming to a close, you've been carrying on and are wondering when is this going to end. The stretch to the next opportunity seems to last way longer than we'd prefer. Yet we have to go through that until we perfect out story with a compelling vision. Have that sound of confidence so they feel our passion. Articulate well the reason we would be a great addition to their team.
Generally it takes us time to build to that point and it is necessary. It never gets perfect but the better we do the closer we get to results. Your goal this next week will be to build your sound of confidence. If you're not sure how then look up a local Toastmasters club and visit them.

Thursday, March 10, 2011


Have you been out reticulating? Some folks call it networking. The other night while at an event a professional sat down beside me and started up a conversation. The event had been open a little over an hour. We discussed the usuals then began talking about networking and the value of live networking over all other types. He felt live was far better and I agreed.

After a few minutes he got up and left. Said he had done all he could and didn't really have any luck. I felt so bad for him because he didn't realize how much he had missed. I sat and checked messages then went back into the crowd and actually met a few more folks then wound up having a long conversation with another about Toastmasters. They asked me.

What did I learn? Make that last trip through as you never know who you might run across. Someone else may have pointed you out, unknown to you, and as you pass through again you could be approached.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

New direction in interviews

In this ever changing world we see changes to everything. A very long time ago the resume was introduced to assist companies in reducing the time it took to recruit and look over possible employees. We've also seen the evolution in resumes and cover letters. Next is/was the electronic media and now social media.

My observations tell me that interviewing is taking another growth step. Rather than the question and answer sessions and a brief outlay of why we are the ideal candidate there is a new level of expectation.

Those that are able to research the company and put together a plan of possible action are seen as more desirable and better asset to the company. Of course this includes interviewing so one can decipher exactly what the company needs. As you put together your plan of action you can combine it with the last minute info you retrieve. Then as you are talking you can slip in ideas and a plan of action. This makes you stand out from the run of the mill "applicant".

Your ability to think quick, listen and interview well makes you much more successful.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Smarter than the average bear

Are you smarter than the average bear? If you are reading this you most likely are. What does being smart have to do with finding the next opportunity out there? Success my friend!

When you put in the effort and research you are more successful faster. Yet that time span seems to still feel too long. Anxiety can do that. Many times the questions are far more important than the answers. Besides getting out there and networking and meeting people your time online needs to contain a lot of research about the companies you have targeted or others have lead you too.

Remember to Have fun, Meet people and Learn something.

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Are you planning on networking forever now?

Over the past 19 years many attendees and past attendees of The Job Finders Support Group have returned to vow that they will never not network again. They have all found that they either haven't networked at all before or began to network until they got hired again. The low and behold something happened and they were let go again and had to start the whole networking project over again. "Never again" is what they say.

Remember to Have fun, Meet people, Learn something and networking is a piece of cake.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Don't just be an applicant

Are you being an applicant or are you in control of your life? So many times we go about our opportunity search by applying for what we see in the paper or hear about somewhere. Why do we do this? Let's be honest. because it is easier. Yes! As crass as that sounds because it is easier.

The art of being successful in your search depends on the pre work, attitude and perseverance you put into this venture.

The game is to learn more about your field and the companies in it. Then to do informational interviews if possible (all things are possible) and learn more about them. Remember that this is always about the other person and not you.

Once you have determined the right companies for you then you'll put together your presentation to discuss what value you'll bring to them and the compelling reason they need to consider you over all the other "applicants".

Friday, February 18, 2011

Spring is just around the corner-2011

Whether you know it or not Spring isn't all that far away. Yet you seem to be mired in the cold of Winter. What do you have to do to get with it?
Quiet introspective searching can be helpful. Better yet though how about meeting up with others. Whether they be friends or new acquaintances. Get out there and share ideas with others. Remember you may be able to help them too.
As you begin laying out your agenda be sure and include some fun functions too. You'd be amazed how many events you can go to and include both networking and fun.

Ask others how they do it.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Time out

Do you ever get that feeling you need a "time out"? Nothing seems to be going right, no one wants to talk or those interviews seem to go no where?
Of course it isn't you, right? It must be them. Or so it appears.

Sometimes you do need a break to clear your mind. To get hold of yourself. Getting away is therapeutic. There does need to be an end date though then get back down to the hard work of searching. Kind of reminds me of how sometimes we need to unplug the computer to reset all switches or pull the battery from our cell phone and restart it.

As you continue to make changes, transitions and transformations in your current life you will see your progress become more fruitful everyday.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Valentine's Day-2011

Don't forget this most important holiday for some. It doesn't take much to have some candy in your pocket to hand out to folks. Help make their day better. And when you stop by those offices don't forget the person at the front desk.

This could be a good day to visit the mall and hang out near the candy counter. Never know who you'll run into. And if you do run into someone it is a great time to catch up and practice your gift of gab. There's always time to catch up with old friends and even a few new ones.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Cold can make you move faster

Has it been cold for you? Every year it cools off at this point in time. Hopefully you aren't cooling off in your search. It does take some extra push to get out there. Just put on a few more clothes when you go out. You need to keep up the networking and meeting people. As much as the nice warm house feels so welcoming it isn't paying the bills.

After watching Dr. Zhivago again and seeing the scene out in the middle of nowhere where there is snow and ice in the house and seeing Zhivago writing poetry it made me think how lucky we have it. Persistence will pay off. I've seen this for too many years. It is a matter of time and you are in control.

The more you get out and make your contacts the closer you are to success.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Short month-Feb.

This month has fewer days in it. If you are tracking your daily contacts and network connecting then you'll need to pick up your pace and schedule a few more meetings per day. Now might be a good time to work on doing that then next month keep up the pace. Remember that you are playing a numbers game. The connections you make, the closer you get to your next opportunity that will lead you to where you want to be.

Each new person or group you meet the more you will learn about yourself and others. You'll get more ideas for questions to ask in the next meeting. As you build more personal relationships you'll find the more valuable you will be to others. Before you know it people will be contacting you for information or assistance.

Should you return to this situation again you'll already have a big part of your network up and running. It should be continual.

Saturday, January 29, 2011


So many people live and die by titles or job titles. Once upon a time a job title totally defined the duties and expectations. Today job titles vary as much as there are jobs. It is so easy to tailor the title to fit any and every position and they are. They are helpful sometimes as reference points but don't totally rely on the title itself.

If you want to use a title then why not make your own and define it. Don't be a slave to titles as you may miss the best opportunities when you needn't. A title is designed to be a snapshot of what you do or what is required. Pretty hard to engulf everything we do and any position.

Companies only need to change a few duties and a name title to make your old one obsolete.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Were you blindsided?

Being blindsided is just that, you never saw it coming. Over the past few years it has seemed to me that more folks are being blindsided. They receive a good annual review, get a salary increase then bingo they are let go. Many times they are called in and notified that the company is making changes and their position has been eliminated.
Sometimes upon questioning they realize that someone else will be performing their old duties with a few changes and a new title. (Titles is another topic to be discussed later) Sometimes people are allowed to apply for the new position and can be successful but not too often. There are many reasons for this.

The question becomes "what to do?" What can you do? Sometimes you can do nothing yet doing nothing has a foreseen outcome. Continuing education is helpful. That doesn't always include classroom or a degree, although it can. Reading, attending seminars, hearing specialized speakers, some TV programs and networking are all great ways to stay current.

Pay attention to what is happening at your company, read current articles about your field and product. Be on the look out for better ways to do it. Don't just sit back and wait for change to happen, be on the leading edge to improve.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Who are you meeting with?

Come on now, who is it? Are you finding new people to meet and exchange information with? Remember that you are an excellent resource for others whether you know it or not. You need to push the envelope and get out there meeting new people everyday. The fewer people you meet the longer you may be searching for your next opportunity.

Your ability to assist and help others, in whatever capacity, is paramount to you finding your next opportunity. Just try it.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Are you believable?

Do you ever get the feeling that when talking to an interviewer you're not really being heard? You know, with all your education, experience and desire to return their look just isn't convincing to you.

Have you thought maybe you don't sound believable? How does one sound believable? You need to employ that sound of confidence that let's the other person know that you know what you are talking about. The education and diplomas are great but you need to have that sound of believability or confidence to make the difference.

Toastmasters stands ready to assist you.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

It's never too late

Just when we think there is no other way, or all hope is lost or we can't do it remember that "It is never too late" to find another and better way. Usually the problem lies in ourselves when we try to do it differently yet we follow the same steps that didn't work in the first place.

There are ways to assist with this though. Like going to sleep on it and starting fresh the next day. We can also call upon friends. Today we can research the Internet and find more information than we need.

To see outside the proverbial box we need to get out of the box.

Sunday, January 9, 2011


Some of you know that resumes are not a favorite of mine. Recognizing they are a necessary evil and many potential employers require them, you do need to have one, or two or as many as needed.
Many times resumes are used as a rejection tool. They are perused for items that take you out of the look. From that point the remainders are scanned again and a few are kept for interviews. That is what they were designed for in the first place, to see more people in less time.

Many states provide assistance for putting together as good a resume as you can. There are numerous professionals that will do the same. Your friends can assist you.

It is far more beneficial to meet people face to face and if they ask for a resume ask them what they want to see in it. (Pam Gross and Peter Pasgill)

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

New and innovative

Are you new and innovative? Are you aware of the driver less cars that Google has out and about? Taking pictures of neighborhoods. Cars that talk to one another to assist in avoiding crashes. Cars that know when one wheel is slipping and are capable to make corrections. All these are already here, not just wants anymore.

You have many more talents and abilities than you know. One way to discover them is to get together with others, whether one on one or in small groups. Through discussions many discoverable talents become uncovered. As you learn what usable talents and knowledge you have you can determine how they can be put to use.

Your job is to discover yourself then sell yourself.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Happy New Years 2011 !

It seems like just yesterday that we were heading into the new millennium. Remember "Y2K" and the fear that the world was going to shut down? Now we are 11 years past that and everything seems to be humming away.
In 2000 would you believe you might have a Smart Phone that could do all they do?

New Years is as good a reason to refresh and get busy again. Making those calls, revisiting friends and colleagues. Setting appointments to help others. Work on your branding, maybe have a mantra. Seek new rocks to turn over and be much more creative than in the past.

Onward and upward.