Choosing the Best Path to Your Next Job

pictured: business people standing in line along a wall

Choosing the Best Path to Your Next Job

September 26, 2022

pictured: business people standing in line along a wallWhat does making progress in your job search really mean? Here are three options for you to choose from:

  1. You have attended a lot of interviews
  2. You’ve made it to the second and third round of many interviews
  3. Each week, more people know what you are looking for and you have visibility within your targeted company even though there isn’t a job opening.

Most job seekers would choose 1 or 2 from that list. They believe the interviews are the key sign of progress. They are feeling optimistic about moving through the interview process because the interview went over 15 minutes, the interviewer liked their responses, or they told you someone would be calling you to move to the next round.

That makes sense! When you can see something, you can visualize you doing that job and you are hopeful about getting an offer.

Unfortunately, looking for a job is much more complicated than applying online and walking through the interview process. If you want just any job, you’re probably right. But if you want to like your job, and if you look at your next job as just one step in your long, successful career, then it isn’t that simple.

There are three pathways job seekers can use to find the right job.

Which pathway are you using?

Pathway #1

Most job seekers are applying for jobs online. They’re seeking roles they believe they are qualified to do. Either they have the skills outlined in the job description, or they have some of them and are confident that, with some training by the company, they can get up to speed quickly. They supply a cover letter and a resume. Then they wait…. and wait… and wait. Sometimes they hear back, but they often don’t.

Pathway #2:

Some job seekers look for jobs within companies where they know someone. They start by finding jobs online, but then their second step is to identify someone they know (or someone that someone they know knows) and asking or a referral. Ideally, the referrer knows the hiring manager and passes on their resume, which increases the chance of hearing back and getting a screening interview.

Pathway #3:

Few people take this third path. It involves developing relationships within your targeted list of companies and roles. You get to know people who can give you information about your industry, and the skills and qualifications needed for the role you are seeking. Hiring managers get to know you beyond your resume, and it increases the chance that you’ll learn about an open role before it’s put out into the public. Because you are now a known entity and have built a nice rapport with the hiring manager, you have an increased chance of getting an interview and getting the job.

Think about it: If you had an opening in your department, would you rather hire someone you’ve already met or someone you need to get to know.

Looking back at these three pathways:

In pathway #1, you aren’t doing enough. You’re starting way back at the end of the line, where thousands of other people are in line with you. You’re largely invisible, and you’re leading on luck to get that job.

Pathway #2 has a better chance of working than #1. Now you’re in the middle of the line. There are still a lot of people there, though not as many as in pathway #1. It is a big help that you’re coming in through a referral in the company. In essence, you are leaning on your referrer’s credibility. It makes you a bit more of a known quantity.

I have to say though – the biggest problem with both #1 and #2 is that you’re basing your search on what is already available. You’re taking what you’re interested in doing and fitting it into the cookie-cutter jobs that are being publicized.

That’s where pathway #3 really differs. When you are taking this route, you are starting with your interests and finding the job that fits you. When you get to know the hiring manager ahead of the job opening, you’re leaning on your own credibility.

Looking for a job is not easy. More than likely, you have used pathway #1 or #2. My question for you is this: Have they led you to a job that you love and a company where you really fit?

If your answer is no, then maybe it’s time to try a new approach. You can get started right now by downloading my free guide: The Secret to Getting to the Front of the Line.

What if you could find out about job openings before they were posted?

Download the guide, The Secret to Getting to the Front of the Line, and learn how to access the hidden job market.

Please enter your name.
Please enter a valid email address.
Something went wrong. Please check your entries and try again.

Introverts: The Secret to Using Conversations to Build Relationships

pictured: a business woman and business man in conversation

Introverts: The Secret to Using Conversations to Build Relationships

July 4, 2022

pictured: a business woman and business man in conversationAre you an introvert who finds it difficult to engage in conversation with someone new? Are you the quiet one in a crowd?

Perhaps you’re worried that you don’t have anything to say that would contribute to the conversation? Or maybe you have something to say, but it’s difficult to find an opening when so many people are talking?

Here is what I want you to know: You have something to contribute! And you don’t need to be talking in order to participate.

By being a good listener, encouraging others to continue to talk, and showing genuine interest in others, you will leave a more favorable impression than the person doing most of the talking.

At the same time, we don’t want you to be completely silent, right? So, let’s talk for a moment about balanced conversations and a framework that you can lean on to help you find space for your voice.

In my book, You, You, Me, You: The Art of Talking to People, Networking, and Building Relationships, I present a simple framework that can help you create structure in your conversations.

The rationale behind this framework is for you to invite others to talk more than you, which is a perfect fit for your tendency to be the quiet one.

How do you do that? By asking questions to help you learn about the other person before you begin to share something about yourself. There’s a rhythm to it… You, You, Me, You. It enables everyone to share, and it creates a sense of balance in the conversation. You can put this framework to use through the questions you ask.

I’ve put together a guide to help you quickly understand and apply the You, You, Me, You framework. You can request the guide here or use the form below. If you want to go deeper, you’ll find my book helpful.

As Dale Carnegie said, “You can make more friends in two months by becoming more interested in others than you can in two years by trying to get other people more interested in you.”

How do you turn a networking conversation into an ongoing professional relationship?

Use the You, You, Me, You Framework to easily engage in smoother conversations that leave a great impression.

Please enter your name.
Please enter a valid email address.
Something went wrong. Please check your entries and try again.

They need you in the office but you like working from home. Now what?

Pictured: woman with her feet up on her desk at home

They need you in the office but you like working from home. Now what?

March 28, 2022

Pictured: woman with her feet up on her desk at homeAt first, the idea of working from home made a lot of employees uncomfortable.

They worried about feeling isolated and about being distracted or unable to focus. They didn’t have their homes set up with a space to work and with the entire family home all the time, it probably felt like chaos.

Two years later, they’ve figured out how to make it work and have settled in. They’ve learned to like it!

And now, companies are making decisions around bringing their employees back into the office. They need to decide if they will continue to have employees work remotely, move to a hybrid model, or have everyone fully return to the office.

As they make this decision, companies are trying to balance the wants of their employees and the needs of their business. They need to be profitable and competitive with productive employees, and they also need to make sure their employees are happy.

There is no one simple answer. Every company has unique needs so the solution will be unique to them. And every job is different. Some require face-to-face interaction while others work perfectly well in a remote environment

What I want to focus on here is how employees are responding to the prospect of going back into the office.

This is what I’m hearing from my own clients:

  • I don’t want to commute. I’ve saved money by staying home and I don’t want the hassle with the traffic.
  • I like working in my sweatpants!
  • I’ve saved so much time by not having to get dressed and pulled together for work.
  • I don’t want to spend my money on new clothes for the office.
  • I like the flexibility that working from home gives me. Going to the office means I won’t be able to take a quick nap after lunch.
  • I do my exercises at lunch, and I won’t be able to do that if I go back to the office
  • I am more productive working from home.

I feel the need to point out that the last point above about productivity is the one that companies are going to be most interested in! Your productivity serves their business needs… but so does your happiness.

On the flip side, I do have some clients who have already gone back to their office. They’re happy to see their colleagues but they find it disruptive. They tell me they can’t get their work done.

It is to the benefit of the company that its employees see each other in less formal “watercooler” settings, and it’s to your benefit as well. These casual meetups are opportunities for spur-of-the-moment brainstorming sessions, spontaneous sharing of ideas, and for networking.

When we work remotely, those casual meet-ups with our colleagues don’t happen. Every interaction is planned. That means that both you and your company miss out.

As your call to return to the office looms, I invite you to think about this from your company’s perspective.

Remember, companies are in business to make money, be profitable, remain competitive, and grow. If they don’t do all these things, then you might not have a job to go back to the office for.

With all of this in mind, the question is: How can both your company’s needs and your wants be met?

You have your list of wants (and perhaps, a resistance to change when you’ve just finally settled in), and your company has business needs.

How can you use this information to create a solution where everyone benefits?

This is about incorporating your wants with the company’s needs. If you can think about things from their perspective, you may find a way to incorporate what you want so that it fits within their needs.

If this is of interest to you, I invite you to take the following steps.

  1. On a piece of paper, create two columns.
    - In the first column, write out all the things you want.
    - In the second column, write out how the company benefits from what you want.
  2. On another page, write out your accomplishments from the past year along with the results of those activities, especially in terms of how the company has benefited.
  3. Then, have a conversation with your manager. Let them know that you want to support them during this time of transition. Take the opportunity to share what you want, and frame it with a focus on how your wants benefit the company.

I’m hoping these steps will open up your perspective. What you want is important! But if they don’t serve the company then it may not be feasible, and it’s important that you get clear on this!

You are an integral part of your company’s success. They want to keep you!

Work towards a solution where everyone benefits; the company will be profitable, growing, and competitive and you will be happy as well.

Where do you want to go in your career?

Use this guide to create your own career path. You can choose your own adventure.

Please enter your name.
Please enter a valid email address.
Something went wrong. Please check your entries and try again.

Getting Comfortable With Small Talk

5 business people talking and looking uncomfortable

Getting Comfortable With Small Talk

March 14, 2022

5 business people talking and looking uncomfortableAre you comfortable with small talk? I’m not a fan of small talk, and I’ve noticed that many people struggle with it.

The thing is, we can’t avoid small talk. It’s an inherent part of how we communicate, even if we hate it.

The answer to our discomfort with small talk is to understand its purpose so that we can leverage it to have the deeper conversations that we seek, and to develop new relationships.

So, what is the purpose of small talk?

It leads to deeper conversation and opportunities that you might not have had prior to what feels like an unimportant conversation that’s going nowhere.

If small talk is so important, why do we struggle so much with it?

For one, I don’t think we realize what purpose small talk plays, so it’s easy to discount it.

That’s the big misconception: We tend to think that small talk is unimportant and something we just have to endure. But small talk IS important! It is leading us to a rich opportunity.

When we engage in small talk, we’re working with our conversational partners to create a connection and get on the same page. It may just feel like chatter, but it can lead us into deeper conversation and it can serve as the beginning of a relationship with the other person.

And for another…it just plain makes us uncomfortable! We spend a lot of our time during small talk thinking things like:

  • “What do I say?”
  • “What if I say something wrong?”
  • “Why is this matter? It doesn’t sound important.”
  • “What do they think of me?”
  • “Is this going anywhere?”
  • “Is this worth my time? Should I be someplace else…?”

These concerns are normal. The realm of small talk is a vague, uncertain space where we’re all just trying to find some solid ground.

To help you (and your conversational partner) have a better small talk experience, I’d like to offer three suggestions that can make it less uncomfortable and also get you into the deeper conversation faster:

  1. Say their name a few different times. The most powerful word for any of us is our own name. It gives them an amazingly positive feeling and it will help you leave a positive impression. It also helps you remember their name for your next conversation with them.
  2. Give them a compliment. Whether you say you like their name, the color of a piece of clothing they are wearing, or are impressed by something they’ve accomplished, a compliment is another way to leave a positive impression. On top of that is the fact that they have the same concerns that you do. They’re thinking, “What if I say something wrong?” and “What does this person think of me?” Giving them a compliment eases these concerns, enabling the conversation to move more smoothly into deeper territory.
  3. Think of small talk as less about talking and more about listening. This is your opportunity to get to know the other person better. Bonus: When you ask your conversational partner questions that invite them to talk longer, you start moving beyond small talk and into the rich, deeper stuff.

I think the most important thing about small talk that we need to remember is that we are not the only ones who are uncomfortable with it. Most people are! But if we can be strategic about how we engage with that initial part of a conversation, we can get a lot more out of where it’s leading… deeper conversation and building great relationships that serve us.

Are you ready to move beyond small talk into building a professional relationship?

Use this step-by-step guide to easily engage in smoother conversation and improve your confidence.

Please enter your name.
Please enter a valid email address.
Something went wrong. Please check your entries and try again.

The Career-Growth Gender Gap: It’s still here but we’ve got plans

women can take action to change the career-growth gender gap

The Career-Growth Gender Gap: It’s still here but we’ve got plans

November 22, 2021

women can take action to change the career-growth gender gapIf you are a woman and early in your career path, there’s something you need to know:

Women face challenges in their career growth that men do not.

If you think that we’re beyond the gender problem, I invite you to think again… because we are not!

In fact, women face TWO specific challenges:

First - Women don’t move up to the next level within their first five years at the same pace as men

Second - Because they don’t get promoted, women do not develop the same leadership skills as men within this same time frame.

These two steps are essential for career growth!

Researchers call this the “broken rung.” According to a 2019 study by McKinsey and LeanIn.org, these obstacles that prevent women from progressing in their careers.

Here’s the thing:

If you don’t get promoted, you don’t get into the pipeline for further promotions. Instead, you play a game of catch-up and it’s easy to continue to fall behind.

So… what can you do about this?

As an answer to that question, I’d like to tell you about a wonderful group of early-career professional women that I recently had the wonderful opportunity to speak with.

They were enrolled in a year-long program designed to address these common career-growth challenges that women face in the workplace. These women knew that they had to take control over what they needed and wanted in their careers. They were aware that if they were going to remove the obstacles they faced, they needed to understand the challenges that created them.

As part of their program, these women identified their values around what is important to them in the workplace. With that in mind, I spoke with them about three key areas that build upon what they value in the workplace.

  1. Work boundaries
  2. Confidence
  3. Assertiveness

These are foundational factors that support their values. (If you want to identify your own values with regards to the workplace, download the Corporate Culture worksheet.)

Here’s a quick summary of these key areas and how they support and align with your values:

Work Boundaries reflect how you want to be treated in the workplace. Keep in mind: You should treat others the same way you hope to be treated. Following the Golden Rule can serve a guiding light.

Confidence helps you define and establish your boundaries.

Assertiveness guides you towards using the right language to get your point across clearly and tactfully when your boundaries are threatened or compromised.

What I find most exciting about these key areas is that they are skills. That means you can learn them and practice them so that when you need them, you’ll be ready.

Here is what I’m hoping you’ll take away from this:

  • You have to choose to take control over what you want and need in your career
  • You can take action to combat the challenges you face
  • Finding support through communities and a career coach can help you make these things happen for yourself.

We are still facing gender challenges in the workplace, but we are not victims to them. You can take specific, focused action to support your own career growth. When you do the work, success will follow.

Do you want to make sure you're happy in your next job?

Use this worksheet to clarify what you need in the next company you work for.

Please enter your name.
Please enter a valid email address.
Something went wrong. Please check your entries and try again.

Need a new job? Start here.

Sign: I quit

Need a new job? Start here.

November 1, 2021

Sign: I quit

You’ve likely heard of the “Great Resignation” a term recently coined by Anthony Klotz, a Management Professor from Texas A&M, who predicted a mass and voluntary exodus from the workforce

Well, it’s happening. According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, four million Americans quit their jobs in August 2021, alone. The highest departures are among the 30-45 career professionals with the 20-25 being the second highest.

Employees are leaving for many different reasons.

They are leaving the company. They are disappointed with how the company has treated them during the pandemic. Many companies have focused more on profits than the people who help them make the profits, and now they are facing the consequences.

They are leaving their manager. Even if the company might be great, but their manager has not been supportive or concerned about the impact that COVID has on the mental and physical health of the people they manage.

They are leaving the job. The role they once loved has changed and, with going remote, the responsibilities may have grown while growth opportunities have diminished.

If you have left your job or if you are thinking about doing so, it is essential that you assess the factors that are driving you to leave. The pandemic may have been the catalyst to help you make your decision, but there’s always something deeper going on. Digging into your unique “something deeper” is essential for helping you move forward. If you don’t know the “why” of such a big decision, how will you know if the next job you find is the right one?

To begin understanding your “why,” answer the questions below:

About the company:

  1. What is it like to work there?
  2. What is the culture like?
  3. Looking at your answers to #1 and #2 above: What is a match for who you are and what is not?

About the manager:

  1. How is their management style congruent with how you like to be managed, and how is it not?
  2. In what ways do they support you in your professional development, and how do they not?
  3. How do they care about your overall well-being, and how do they not?

About the job:

  1. When you think back when you were first hired or promoted into the most recent role, why were you excited about it?
  2. What did you hope to learn, and did you learn it?
  3. In what ways do you find your role challenging, rewarding, or demanding… and in what ways do you not?

Your answers to these questions can help you define what you are looking for in your next role.

When we cut to the chase, every theme of the “Great Resignation” points to the fact that employees are leaving their jobs because they are not happy. They want something else that their existing company, job, and manager are not able to provide.

If you have left or are thinking of leaving, make sure you clearly understand your reasons why. Your answers to the questions above will help you create the path to a new position that will fulfill you in the ways that you need.

Do you want to make sure you're happy in your next job?

Use this worksheet to clarify what you need in the next company you work for.

Please enter your name.
Please enter a valid email address.
Something went wrong. Please check your entries and try again.

Having trouble finding a job? This might be why.

How to find the right job for you

Having trouble finding a job? This might be why.

October 18, 2021

Are you struggling to find a job?

Not just any job… the right job. The job where you’ll be happy, with a company whose culture fits you well, and where you can see yourself staying for the long haul?

You, my friend, are not looking for a job; you’re looking for the next step in your career. And unfortunately, it’s no surprise that you’re struggling.

The process of looking for a job is convoluted and bottlenecked. Almost every job seeker goes to the same big places to post their resume and look for jobs, and almost every company goes to that same place to filter through the chaos in search of that one perfect person who checks all the boxes on their job listing.

Unfortunately, this will stay as it is so long as everyone keeps doing what they’re doing.

I think it’s interesting that both job seekers and companies with job openings all go through this same process over and over, even though it’s convoluted and difficult to work with. I recently wrote an article addressing how companies could do things differently.

I’m wondering… did you know that you have options?

Posting to LinkedIn and the common job boards is just one way to try and find a job. But since most other people use that same process, it’s going to be incredibly difficult (if not impossible) to stand out.

So, what can you do instead? You can tap the hidden job market.

This means you’re going to have to do something active rather than passive.

When you distribute copies of your resume to LinkedIn, job boards, and directly to companies, you’re actually being very passive. It’s a lot like throwing your resume into a huge haystack of resumes and hoping the person reaching in just happens to grab yours.

If you really want the right job, you’re going to have to get active. When you actively job search, the people who have a job opening that fits you will already know about you. They won’t reach into the haystack; instead, they’ll download your resume from their email, or even just pick it up off their desk.

What is the “active” action that will make that happen? You’re going to have to talk to people.

Here’s the thing: The best jobs are found through your network.

It’s ok if you don’t have one yet, or you do but you’ve let it languish. We all need to build our networks, and then we need to maintain them.

If you’re looking for the right job right now, the best thing you can do is reach out to your network. Get connected and stay connected.

If your next question is, “But what do I say?” I’ve got you covered! Here are some of my recent articles that will help you be strategic in how you connect with your network:

Request your copy of The Secret to Getting to the Front of the Line:

Please enter your name.
Please enter a valid email address.
Something went wrong. Please check your entries and try again.

Solve the Hidden Talent Shortage with a New Approach

Solving the Hidden Talent Shortage with a New Approach

Solve the Hidden Talent Shortage with a New Approach

October 4, 2021

Solving the Hidden Talent Shortage with a New ApproachAccording to the Manpower Group, almost 70% of employers report that they cannot find the people with skills they need. (Manpower Group, 2020, The Talent Shortage.) In the U.S., employer intentions to bring on workers is at a ten-year high. (Manpower Group report, Q4 2021)

At the same time, the U.S. unemployment rate was at 5.2 in August 2021.(Bureau of Labor Statistics, September 3, 2021, The Employment Situation – August 2021)

In short: There are jobs available, and there are plenty of people looking for those jobs.

So, what’s the problem? The operative word is “talent.” There are plenty of people who are looking for jobs. But companies struggle to connect with the job seekers who have the right skills and experience to fill the open roles.

I believe this challenge exists because companies are using old ways to find new talent.

Thanks to improved technology and changes that we’ve need to make around the globe to adjust for a global pandemic, the use of video interviews and social media outlets to drive recruiting strategies has increased. But where companies find the talent to interview has not changed.

Until companies start approaching the talent pool from a different direction, finding the right talent to fill open roles will continue to be a challenge.

The strategies for finding talent that companies typically use are no longer working. To get ahead of the trend, companies need to become proactive not reactive in finding talent, and they need to bring in more of a human touch to the process.

There are some nuances to this problem that I want to address: It starts with where companies are looking for talent, but also includes what they are looking for from within the talent pool.

First, companies habitually look for talent when the position is ready to be filled. They open the position and only then do they hit up LinkedIn and other online platforms. They work their way through the pile of unknown talent via resumes from people they’ve not yet met. Bigger companies may even filter those resumes with technology using an Applicant Tracking System (ATS), which removes any sense of the human behind the words.

But what if companies reversed this process?

What if they started with the pool of talent and got to know the people interested in working with them… and at the same time, gave those people an opportunity to get to know the company and its culture better?

What I’m suggesting here is that companies could build their own Hidden Talent Network where they can gather the pool of interested job seekers before the job is open.

This would allow the companies to address the second nuance that I mentioned above: Changing what they are looking for from that talent.

Typically, companies look for ideal candidates who already have everything that is listed on the job description. That means they miss one key factor: the candidate’s potential.

Finding the right person for a job isn’t just about whether they’ve got all the boxes checked. It’s also about their potential to check more boxes as they grow with the company.

Why does this matter? Turnover is expensive!

It can cost a U.S. company $4000 or more to hire one employee, and it can take up to 52 days to fill a position. (Toggl.com) If you hire someone who doesn’t stay, the company starts the process again, losing more money and time in the process.

Therefore, the goal should not be to hire someone who checks all the boxes in the job description; rather, hire someone who has the potential to check those boxes and much more. Hire someone who envisions themselves staying with your company for the long term, and who you already know fits the culture.

Building your own Hidden Talent Network would help you do this. It provides you with a pool of people that you already know, and who have gotten to know your company as well. Before the job is even open, you can identify the people who tick most of the boxes and show potential to grow with your company. You’ll shorten the time to hire and potentially reduce how much money it costs to find them.

So how do you build a Hidden Talent Network? Slowly, over time, by scouting talent and giving the talent the opportunity to scout you.

For example, you could host talent events where you can speak to them in groups about where your company is going. In what ways is it growing and what types of talent do you hope to be looking for in the future? Talk about your organizational culture and what you value. This would also be a great time to set expectations: What can job seekers expect during your hiring process? Which skills and qualifications are mandatory? What can they do to be an even better fit as the anticipated jobs come open?

Transparency on your part will help you find the right people and get the conversations started early.

From all the years that I’ve spent working with job seekers to help them find the right positions that will help them build a career for themselves, the one thing that I’ve consistently seen is that the best jobs are found through the hidden job market.

That “hidden job market” is something that a job seeker builds for themselves by making connections with the companies that they are interested in working with.

Companies could do this as well by making it easier for individuals to connect with them and speeding up the whole job placement experience for everyone involved. It could also provide them with an untapped market of talent that they could onboard quickly.

The world has changed and continues to do so. If companies want to get the best talent, they’ll need to change with it. The global pandemic has made us all more human. Connection matters more to us. The companies that are embracing this humanness are the ones that will find the best people.

Request your copy of The Secret to Getting to the Front of the Line:

Please enter your name.
Please enter a valid email address.
Something went wrong. Please check your entries and try again.

3 Easy Tips to Leave a First and Lasting Impression

How to leave a great first impression

3 Easy Tips to Leave a First and Lasting Impression

September 20, 2021

How to leave a great first impression

I have been working in the career field for over 20 years helping early-, mid-, and late-career professionals in job transition. Networking is always a topic of discussion since it is a key success factor in finding the right job! My goal is to make sure my clients understand how to network effectively and see where they might need some guidance.

I start with my definition of networking, which is: building relationships with people who can provide you with information, advice, and contacts. You want to leave a favorable impression with those you meet so that if they hear about a position that is not published, they will let you know.

It’s important that my clients and I have a mutual understanding of the definition of networking. I’ve noticed that some job seekers think networking is all about them. They tell everyone they are looking for a job and ask everyone to let them know if they hear of any jobs that would be good fit.

That does not sound like building relationships. Rather, it’s a transactional relationship focused on one purpose: Finding a job!

That isn’t how networking operates. It leaves a negative impression because it’s one-sided… all take and no give.

If you want to leave a favorable impression with people you meet, you need to start by focusing on the other person first.

Here are three simple steps to get you started:

Tip #1: Use their name at least 3 times: At the beginning, middle and end of the conversation.

Start by using it as you are introduced: “Jayne, it is a pleasure to meet you. Thank you so much for taking your time to talk to me.” If their name is difficult to pronounce, this is your opportunity to ask: “Can you please pronounce your name again. I want to make sure I am saying it correctly.” This is a very gracious way of respecting them and people always appreciate it.

Mention their name again during your conversation and most importantly, use it at the end: “Jayne, I appreciate your insights today and I intend to follow up with many of your suggestions. Thank you!”

In addition to helping you build a respectful connection with them, you’re almost guaranteed to remember their name in the future because you’ve done the repetitive work to get it into your memory.

Tip #2: Show interest in the other person by asking questions. You can ask them what they do for work and what they like about their job. You can take it even further and ask how and why they entered their field. Invite them to go into a little bit of detail by asking questions like, “Can you tell me a little more about that?” Resist the urge to chime in or comment right away. Use this as an opportunity to practice listening as you give them the space to tell their story before you bring the conversation around to you.

Tip #3:  Follow up twice! First, send them a note of appreciation either by email or with a handwritten note. Mention some of the highlights of the conversation, which will show that you were listening and also remind them of what you talked about.

Then follow up again a couple of weeks later. Perhaps you can send them an article related to something that they mentioned when you first met. You could also give them an update on your job search.

Wait – job search? YES! You do get to tell them about your job search. Just don’t start there, and don’t let that be the only thing you talk about.

When you make it about them, they’ll remember you and be more willing to help you.

Leaving a first and last impression with people you meet might take a bit of effort and awareness on your part. Trusts me… in the end, it is worth it!

Do you want to make sure you're happy in your next job?

Use this worksheet to clarify what you need in the next company you work for.

Please enter your name.
Please enter a valid email address.
Something went wrong. Please check your entries and try again.

You Don’t Know Where You’re Going but You Can’t Stay Here

What's next?

You Don’t Know Where You’re Going but You Can’t Stay Here

August 23, 2021

What's next?Working from home has either reinforced how much you love what you do or how much you really need to be doing something different… and soon! Many of my clients are telling me: “I am not happy with what I am doing, but I don’t know what I want to do instead!

Welcome to “The Great Resignation,” where so many employees are leaving their jobs for new ones.

How employees were treated by their companies during Covid brought about a heightened awareness of what is possible and what doesn’t work anymore. As employees are being asked to go back into the office, they are realizing not only that they don’t want to go back, but also they don’t want to go back to that same old job.

Does this resonate with you?

If so, the one thing I caution you against is taking on another job without making sure that it is absolutely going to be the right one for you. Let’s make sure you aren’t jumping out of the frying pan and into the fire!

To avoid that, let’s work together and make a plan.

Here are the steps that you can take to start understanding what's next for you:

Step 1: Get clear on why you are leaving your current job. Is it the responsibilities? The people? The lack of a challenge? The culture? Does it not match what you envision for yourself… or something else?

Step 2: Look back at your career and see if it can guide you towards what to do next. What skills have you gained along the way? What problems have you had success in solving? Look back at least five years to find your answers. You will have an easier time going forward if you can build on and draw from where you’ve already been.

Step 3: Create a hybrid format resume pulling the accomplishments from your chronological resume where you have demonstrated the skills from step 2. This format highlights your skills and accomplishments and deprioritizes your previous job titles.

Step 4: Research roles that require the use of your skills starting in your industry or parallel ones. Note: Changing industries are more challenging than changing jobs within your existing industry.

Step 5: Find people who work in the jobs you’ve identified and connect with them.  Try to learn about the role, responsibilities, the type of problems they are solving, the skills needed to do the job well, and the challenges you can anticipate.

These 5 steps will help you get started in the right direction of finding what you want to do next.

The key to success in changing roles is in the relationships you build with people you meet along the way

There’s a lot to do here, and it’s not hard to get frustrated or feel lost. If you truly want to make a change, consider working with a Career Coach to help guide you through the process and keep you on the right track!

Do you want to make sure you're happy in your next job?

Use this worksheet to clarify what you need in the next company you work for.

Please enter your name.
Please enter a valid email address.
Something went wrong. Please check your entries and try again.