Tag Archives: preparation

Job search scams to watch out for

A banking jobs website salesman called my partner one day. They have the best, the greatest, the most useful banking jobs website ever. They want us to have all of our candidates put their resumes up on their website. Then any employer can pay a fee, find the resumes, and hire the candidates. There are a whopping 175 resumes in the database. It is useless for anyone to go there. Don’t waste your time putting your resume on that website.

  1. Wasting your time online is the biggest internet job site scam. Many sites sell hope, and not results, ever.

You need to talk to people. Your resume only has one purpose, to get you an interview. If you can call up a company and talk to a real person who might tell you to come in for an interview, that’s the best use of your time.

  1. One other job site scam is the high fee “We’ll help you find a job” website. I have nothing against legitimate resume preparation companies. Someone who helps you prepare for interviews for a fee is fine. Resume rabbit will post your resume on 75 websites for a small fee. Companies that send your resume to 10,000 companies do a service, even if it is mostly useless. The problem is with companies that will charge you $5,000 or $20,000 for those services. Sorry, that’s where I draw the line. So, let me give you some guidelines on top fees you should pay. Paying a fraction of these fees for great service is common. This is the MOST you should pay, ever.
  • Resume preparation: $800
  • Resume posting to job sites $150
  • Interview coaching: $150 per hour
  • Mass resume blasts to employers: a few hundred dollars

Consider the internet a helper in your job search. Your goal is to talk to people who can hire you.

Something to do today

Call a potential employer or recruiter today. Talk to someone. 

How to make sure you are picked for a promotion

Julie called my office. She wants a promotion. I’m a recruiter, it’s my job to help her find that promotion in a new company. I hate to have someone turn down a job because their boss makes them a counter offer they can’t refuse. I asked her, “How often do you tell your boss you want a promotion?” 

“I told him at my last performance review.”

“How long ago was that?”

“It has been over a year. We’re so busy the managers just can’t find time to do them.”

She’s a superstar performer going nowhere. When the office is jumping with activity for months at a time, no one counts her performance as exceptional. They just know she isn’t any trouble.

So, I suggested she declare her candidacy in a way that makes her an obvious choice for that promotion. It will also make it easier to find a new job with a promotion. First Julie needs to invite a few of her bosses out to lunch. She needs to let them know she wants the promotion. She needs to find a mentor. Then she needs to get a plan put together with her mentor’s help. She needs to prepare for a promotion. 

Deciding who to promote in an office of heads-down hard workers is tough. There is no standout leader. No one has already taken the helm. However, in an office with a bunch of hard workers, one of whom has been working with the boss to develop leadership skills for a year, which will get promoted? Obviously the boss’s protégé. The person who has declared themselves for the job. 

Julie may need to take a bookkeeping course, sales training, management classes and take the lead in 5 or 10 projects. What she needs can be determined with her mentor. As she does these things, she will be seen as the obvious choice for a promotion. Her bosses and her coworkers will both see she is the obvious choice for promotion.

If you want to be promoted, ask one of your bosses to help you prepare now. Find a mentor.

Something to do today

Invite your boss or his boss to lunch. Ask him to mentor you and help you get ready for a promotion.

What will happen in this summer’s recession

I expect there to be a minor recession this summer.  We will be out of it before the year ends.

Three things will surely happen to companies in the next recession:

  1. Companies will have layoffs and close.
  2. A lot of people will retire.
  3. Musical chairs will become the biggest game in corporate America.

In a recession, companies close down divisions and lay off people.  Many will offer early retirement to their older and more expensive workers.  A lot of those retirees will decide to really retire.

I saw one estimate that half the US workforce is over 60 right now. I’m suspicious of that number.  However, there are a lot of people who will retire and won’t look for another job.  They are highly skilled.  Someone has to take their place.  Prepare now and you will find the coming decade to have incredible possibilities.  There will be more openings at high levels in companies than there have ever been in the history of America.

Take advantage of the future retirements.  In your company and division decide who is going to retire in the next 3 years.  Someone will fill their job, and then a domino effect will happen.  It will look like musical chairs as everyone scrambles to fill open seats created by the guy who just got promoted.  Musical chairs in the corporation is going to be incredible.  Prepare now and position yourself.

There is no such thing as luck. There is only adequate or inadequate preparation to cope with a statistical universe.  (Robert Heinlein)   

Something To Do Today


Figure out who will be retiring where you work.  How can you take advantage of it?


Later:  Some jobs give you a bad reputation, no matter how good you are.

Your New Career Is Only 3 or 4 Steps Away

There are no secrets to success.  It is the result of preparation, hard work, and learning from failure. (Powell)

Gary decided the world needed a better way to pay insurance claims in 1996. He made a plan and took a step.  Then he planned and took the next step, over and over. Along the way he picked up investors, technicians, sales people and managers.   The company changed into a stored value credit card company.  A few years ago he sold his company for over $200,000,000.  

Did you notice that his company is not the same as it started out in 1996?  There was a problem with the payment method they wanted to use.  When they solved that problem, they found the possibilities in the payment solution were greater than in their original plan.

Let’s not concentrate on Gary.  Let’s concentrate on the people who work for him, the people who do what you do.  He has accountants, programmers, lawyers, salespeople, managers and secretaries who all took a chance.  They found someone who could daydream.  It was Gary.  They believed in his daydream.  They hitched their careers to his star and away the whole team went.

If you are doing exactly what you like, stay there.  If you want to do something else, look for someone who can help you achieve that dream.  You may first have to hitch your career to a place that will help you pay for the school education you need.  The time will come when you are too constricted there.  You will have the school education.  Next you need hands on experience.  First try to grow where you are.  If you can’t grow, start looking for the next place you can grow.

Your career will be a set of steps.  Your initial plan will undoubtedly change.  Plan three or four steps out and execute the next step.  Then when you accomplish that first step, re-plan.

The world changes incredibly quickly.  Plan to change your plans.  Now, work the next step and cause your future to change.

Write out your plan.  What do you want to do?  Then plan 4 major steps to get where you want to be. 

Being a business owner, consultant programmer or the number one salesperson in your field may be right for you.  Or you may find that being a great mother or father is even more important.

Make sure your plan gets you to what will really make you happy, not just to where other people will worship you.