September 2011 Archives

Wednesday September 28, 2011

Cover Letter Tip: Give and You Shall Receive

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© Written By Jimmy Sweeney

President of CareerJimmy and Author of the brand new, Amazing Cover Letter Creator Cover letter.jpg

Most job seekers know the value of a well-written cover letter. It's their calling card, their first impression, their opportunity to get a foot in the door of the company they hope to work for. BUT, not every job seeker knows how to write such a letter. Many toot their horn in the wrong direction. They focus on themselves, failing to connect with the hiring manager who is reading the cover letter.

Give Your Best . . .

Keep in mind three things.

  1. Your knowledge of the company. Find out the mission statement and mention it in the letter. This shows you have done your homework and know the focus of the organization.

  2. Your skills and experience. Tie these to the mission statement. In other words, how can what you do and the background you have help further the goals of the company?

  3. Your willingness to work for the good of the organization. Mention your ability to get along with colleagues, to be a team player, and to take the lead when called for.

    . . . to Get the Job

    A cover letter such as this will demand attention, prompt the hiring manager to call you for an in-person interview, and create a bond of good will between the two of you. Everyone wants to work with a person who has solid experience, sound principles, and a steady work pattern.

    You can convey this and more in a first-class job search cover letter.

    - Jimmy Sweeney

    Jimmy Sweeney is the president of CareerJimmy and author of the brand new, Amazing Cover Letter Creator." Jimmy is also the author of several career related books and writes a monthly article titled, "Job Search Secrets."

    Visit our friends at Amazing Cover Letters for your "instant" cover letter today. "In just 3½ minutes you will have an amazing cover letter guaranteed to cut through YOUR competition like a hot knife through butter!"

Friday September 23, 2011

How to Target Hiring Managers and Crack the Hidden Job Market

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Fact: The advertised job market is literally the tip of the iceberg.

Fully 70-80% of jobs go unadvertised by employers, who fear being deluged by hundreds of resumes from applicants, most of whom won't be qualified.

Recruiter Advice.jpg With that in mind, it makes sense to spend about 80% of your time cracking this "hidden" market of unadvertised jobs. And a good way to do it is to contact hiring managers at companies you want to work for. Your aim? To prove that hiring you would be a terrific investment, one that makes or saves them more money than they would pay you in salary.

So, where do you find a list of these hiring managers?

You can't find one. You have to build your own list.

Fortunately, it's fairly simple to do.

So say two experienced recruiters, David Perry (author of "Guerrilla Marketing for Job Hunters 2.0") and Mark Haluska (principal of recruiting firm Real Time Network, in Pittsburgh, PA).

First of all, what level of decision maker should you talk to about creating a job or hiring you for one that's unadvertised?

"You want to contact the individual two levels up from the position you are applying for," suggests Haluska. "There are two reasons for that. First, the person two levels up has the bigger picture. They may actually be looking to replace the person below them, who would be your boss."

"Second, if you're really good and you contact the person you would work for, if they are small-minded, they may be threatened by your credentials," which can kill your chances, according to Haluska.

In the Darwinian world of office politics, this makes sense. If you display more initiative than your next boss or outshine someone they recently hired, you risk making that boss look bad, which is not a recipe for success.

Read The Full Story Here

Wednesday September 21, 2011

Recruiters: The Best Voice Mail Message, Ever

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Rats. I mean, Hooray! I got his voice mail!

Sometimes it seems that the technology which was designed to improve our communication continues to build layer after layer of impenetrable walls between us and the people we need to reach. So instead of looking at voice mail as a hindrance, look at it as a direct mail advertisement with a one hundred percent open rate. One hundred percent of the voice mail messages you leave will be heard by the people you want to reach. It's up to you to come up with a way to get them to take action and call you back. Telephone.jpg

The type of message you leave is dependent upon the type of person you are trying to reach. For prospective clients, your sales message is fruitless if it's just a pitch and doesn't offer anything of value. For prospective candidates, if you tell them you are a recruiter and that you have a great opportunity, they'll probably roll their eyes and delete your message, just like they did with the five other identical messages left for them this week from your competitors. I've seen different variations of getting candidates to call back. The most ridiculous is the silly trick of hanging up before you tell them why you're calling. My name is Harry the Happy Headhunter, my number is 555-5555 and I need to talk to you about..(click!) At first it might seem that we've just discovered a new way to get people to call back. But what if they don't? What if they've already had that trick used on them before? It's an overused and trite sales trick that dates back to the origination of voice mail. If you do this then you can't ever leave another message for them. You've lost them and your credibility with them, forever.

Last week, I achieved one hundred percent success in getting call-backs from candidates when I left this message: "Joe, my name is Scott Love, my phone number is 828 225 7700 and I need to talk with you about Gina Smith. Please call today. I'll be available between three and five this afternoon. If my assistant tells you I'm on the phone, please ask her to interrupt me so I can take your call. My number is 828 225 7700."

[Read on]

Wednesday September 14, 2011

How to Get Beyond the Gatekeepers While Job Hunting

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Getting beyond the gatekeepers can be one of the most challenging for jobseekers. Gatekeepers can be those most obvious, such as administrative or personal assistants to the company's hiring managers, department heads, and executives. But, gatekeepers can be those in less obvious roles as well, such as assistant managers, supervisors, engineers, and so on.

Your first thought might be that only those within some sort of support role serve as gatekeepers, yet directors and executives can be gatekeepers as well. Gatekeepers are merely those who put obstacles in front of you -- demonstrated by dodging questions, failing to answer emails, and eventually pawning you off to someone else.

gate.jpgGatekeepers are generally tasked to . . .

  • Provide limited or no information to jobseekers

  • Point every applicant down the same path for applying

  • Comply with company procedure pertaining to hiring practice

Sometimes, jobseekers get short-fused when having to deal with gatekeepers -- unfortunately forgetting that gatekeepers are people, simply doing their jobs.

Need to get beyond a gatekeeper?

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Friday September 2, 2011

Five Keys to Moving the Fence-Sitting Candidate

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I felt like someone kicked me in the stomach. I just left the third message for the candidate without a getting a single call back. He had a great background and the first time I talked with him two weeks ago he said there were some pretty important issues motivating him to consider other things. Just last week he seemed interested in my client's opportunity, but I feared that the fear of change had taken him out of play. Finally, with my timing just right and the planets in proper alignment, I made one last call and caught him at his desk as he was on his way out the door. Employers call me!.jpg

I told him that my client wanted to meet with him for an interview. He responded by saying the three words that every recruiter fears to hear: "I've been thinking. . ." Anytime I hear a candidate say they've been thinking, it usually means that they want to withdraw their candidacy. Then they usually end this sentence saying "thank you" the same way I thank a cop for giving me a speeding ticket.

But I did it. I was able to turn him around. This is what I said:

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