10 Most Important Steps to Obtain Dream Job

10 Most Important Steps to Obtain Dream Job

 

I often speak to students and career groups about how to obtain a dream job or reinvent a career.  I have listed some of the most important points from my lectures, with appropriate links to articles, to explain the process.  Be sure to click on the links listed under each step to watch videos and read the articles to get step by step instructions.

  1. Define Your Goals:  People fear making mistakes.  Although it can be argued there are no mistakes, only learning experiences, part of avoid mistakes is to have good goals.  The goals must be measurable with timeframes listed for when you wish to achieve those goals.
  2. Analyze “You” as the Product:  To get a job, you must showcase your talents by thinking of “you” as the product.  When you are networking and interviewing, you are “selling” a product and that product is you.   Be sure to analyze your online reputation.  You can be sure that companies will check on this.
  3. Create a Personal SWOT Analysis:  SWOT stands for strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats.  By creating a personal SWOT analysis, you can work on capitalizing on your strengths and find solutions for any weaknesses or threats.
  4. Analyze Your Competition: When you are interviewing, you must remember there are a lot of others that are competing for the same job.  Think of those things that you bring to the table that your competition does not.  What do others have that you need to be working on in the meantime?  Have you done your research?  If an interviewer asks you the question: “Why did you pick our company?” . . . do you have a good answer?  Know the answers to difficult job interview questions.
  5. Capitalize on Personality Skills: Part of finding the right job is based on understanding your personality preferences.  Personality tests like Myers Briggs MBTI can be very helpful in leading you to the right job.  It is also important to work on developing emotional intelligence. Find out why employers are placing as much value on EQ as IQ.
  6. Analyze Jobs:  Find out what jobs pay:  One of the first steps is to find out what a job is worth.  Consider what types of jobs motivate you.  Check out top 10 ways to find a job or have a job find you.
  7. Showcase Your Talents:  Use social networking to get noticed.  Find out how you can use a simple PowerPoint presentation and Camtasia to showcase your abilities.  If you are not on LinkedIn, you should be.  Use Google Docs and LinkedIn to get noticed.  Rev up your business card by adding a QR code to it.  Avoid putting these top 10 wrong things on resumes.
  8. Ace the Interview:  Once you are able to obtain an interview, use personality skills to wow them.  Deliver information in the job interview based upon understanding introverts and extroverts.  Keep in mind the proper answer to tough interview questions.
  9. Follow up on the Interview:  Always follow up with a thank you note.  It is important to stand out from the crowd and having manners is very important.  It is important to realize that millennials have unique job expectations and may not come across as respectful at times.
  10. Use what You Have Learned to Succeed: Continue to use the things you have learned in order to obtain the job.  Don’t stop setting goals.  Stay connected through social networking in case the job doesn’t work out.

How to Use QR Codes on Your Resume and Business Cards

QR codes are the latest thing in marketing.  They are in the newspapers, on billboards and on just about every kind of marketing material you can imagine. Now you can utilize this amazing new technology to make your business card and/or resume stand out from the rest.  This is an innovative way to show prospective employers that you are tech savvy.  It also can redirect them to important information on your website that you cannot include in your resume. 

Here is an example of how to put one on your business card. 

Anyone with a smartphone that has an app for reading QR codes can easily point their phone at your card and find out more information about you.  If you don’t have a QR reader app on your phone, they are easy to download from sites like iTunes and they are free.  I use QR Reader for iPhone.  Once you have the app on your phone, open it, and point the phone’s camera at the square on my card.  See how it directs you to a site. 

The QR codes are simple to create.  Check out this article:  how to create your own QR codes.

Here is an example of how to include them on your resume:

 
If you used your reader to scan these codes listed here, you can see they each will send you to a different site.  You may just want to send them to your LinkedIn page or some other website that showcases your abilities.  You could create a presentation in Google Docs or on YouTube that would make you stand out from the crowd.  If you have always felt that you could get that job if only they could see you, now is your chance.  Just be careful to create quality content on the site where you direct potential employers. 

To see QR codes in action, check out this video about how QR codes are changing the way people shop:

Top 10 Ways to Find a Job or Have a Job Find You

With the current job market, people are looking for unusual ways to stand out in the crowd.  I recently gave a presentation at a local university where I explained the job searching tips I discuss in this article.  To see that actual live presentation, click here.

If you are not utilizing some of the following ways to showcase your talents to prospective employers, you may be missing the boat.  Here is my top 10 list of things you need to be doing if you are looking for a job.

1.  Research Top Career Sites like Monster, CareerBuilder, etc. Look for sites specific to the industry in which you want to work.  For example, there are pharmaceutical-specific sites like Medzilla or higher educational-specific sites like HigheredJobs.  Update your information with each of these sites and set up searches so that jobs are sent to you as they become available.  

2.  Utilize Camtasia and PowerPoint to showcase your abilities.  If you know how to create a PowerPoint presentation, then it can be quite simple to use a software package like Camtasia to have voice-over capabilities to make your presentation have more depth.  These presentations can be showcased on many different sites including your blog or website if you have one.  One of the best places to showcase your talents with the final presentation product is through Youtube. For an example of one I’ve made, click here.

3.  Utilize Youtube to present “you” as a viable product.  If you have created a video or a Camtasia/PowerPoint presentation mentioned previously, Youtube is the place to upload it for maximum exposure.  If you have a skill that is visual such as ability to work in Photoshop, you can create print screens of your work and incorporate them into your presentations. 

4.  Google Docs is very much like PowerPoint but it can be seen by people on the Internet as well as be imported into your Linkedin Profile. To see an example of one I have created, click here.

5.  Prezi is also similar to PowerPoint in that it is presentation software.  The big difference is how it displays your information. This web-based program can show things in a non-linear fashion.  If you haven’t had a chance to view a Prezi presentation, check one out by clicking here.

6.  Blogging is a great way to get your presence known on the Internet.  Sites like WordPress are free and easy to set up.  You can link your blog to several other networking sites to capture the attention of those on Facebook, Twitter and many more sites.

7.  LinkedIn is probably one of the best sites you can use to get exposure to people and showcase your talents.  Utilize their Q&A area to become an expert.  Sign up for groups to meet others that could hook you up with opportunities.  Import your Google Docs, WordPress blogs and other information to showcase your abilities.  Tie your status line into Twitter to get more exposure.

8.  Facebook is also an important place to network. You can create a professional page for your work or display your products that you are promoting. 

9.  Twitter can also be a useful way to have others learn about what you are doing professionally.  Be sure you tie in your other sites links to Twitter.  Use programs like bit.ly to shorter any web addresses to fit your message on Twitter.

10. Old Fashioned Networking is still important.  Always have your business card with you.  Talk to everyone you know and talk to people you don’t know.  If you are sitting by someone on an airplane or standing in line to buy something, you just might find that the person you meet has connections.  Have your business card ready!

For more articles to help you, see:

What is Prezi? How Does it Compare to Powerpoint

I use Powerpoint on occasion.  In fact, I used it for a presentation last night.  However, there is another program out there that could give Powerpoint a run for its money.  If you haven’t seen Prezi yet, I highly recommend checking it out. 

Prezi differs from Powerpoint in that it is a web-based program that allows you to create more of a canvas presentation instead of a sequential slide presentation. Think non-linear. It allows you to incorporate not only text and pictures, but videos and other presentation objects.  You can create your presentation online and then download the final product so that you don’t require an internet connection to display the presentation.

Students and professors can get this application for free.

Get a Job and Get Noticed By Taking Full Advantage of LinkedIn’s Capabilities

How to Reinvent Your Career by Dr. Diane Hamilton

With the release of my new book, How to Reinvent Your Career: Make Money Doing What You Love, I have been talking with a lot of people about ways for job seekers to get noticed. If you are currently in the market for a new job, don’t under estimate the importance of utilizing sites like Linkedin.  In a radio interview I did yesterday, talk show host, Anna Banks, and I discussed the value of Linkedin for the job seeker.  To listen to that interview, click here.  If you have not had a chance to take full advantage of what LinkedIn has to offer, take a moment to check out some of the links provided in this article to help you increase your exposure on their site to get noticed by prospective employers.

LinkedIn image
Website: linkedin.com
Location: Mountain View, California, United States
Founded: May 1, 2003
Funding: $103M

Southcoasttoday.com reported, “LinkedIn has become the new resume, so the importance of it from that regard cannot be understated for job seekers. Recruiters and hiring managers use LinkedIn as their primary research tool. Job seekers should ensure that their LinkedIn site tells their story well, uses key words that are likely to be searched, and includes a downloadable resume using a tool such as Slideshare, which is available on LinkedIn”

I personally also recommend considering importing presentations from Google Docs into your LinkedIn profile to showcase your talents.  To see how to do this click here

How big is LinkedIn?  According to Bakersfield.com “LinkedIn boasts of 80 million members in more than 200 countries. A recent post on Mashable.com notes the growing number of places recruiters are posting jobs, with LinkedIn at the top of the list. ”

If you are interested in reading more about Linkedin and ways to use it to find a job, check out some of these articles:

Monitoring Your Online Reputation

Using Keywords to Optmize Your Linkedin Site

LinkedIn’s New Signal Program

How to Find a Job on LinkedIn

How to Look Amazing on LinkedIn

Asking People to Join You on LinkedIn

The Top 5 Ways You Should Be Using LinkedIn to Find a Job

I am always on the lookout for articles about careers, social networking and education.   I hit the trifecta when I discovered Linkedin was offering Career Explorer for graduates.  TechCrunch recently a very interesting article they posted about the use of LinkedIn for students needing help with their career path.  The following is an excerpt from that article:

LinkedIn is launching a new data-focused feature, called LinkedIn Career Explorer, that provides college graduates with insights from other LinkedIn members to help them visualize a career path.

Career Explorer leverages data from the professional social network’s 80 million members to help students visualize and map successful career paths in a variety of industries. The product also shows college students job opportunities and salary information, the type of education and experience required, and will indentify people who can help them find these jobs.

So students can specify a type of job that they want to pursue or the company they want to work for and LinkedIn will show professionals who have succeeded in similar endeavors. Students can also access the best contact within their networks for certain fields or companies, and LinkedIn will recommend job openings.

The new feature will lead students to the Company Profiles (LinkedIn now has over 1 million profiles on the network), and encourage users to “follow” those companies to receive updates, including job postings, new hires and more.

Career Explorer is currently being rolled out to students at 60 universities in the U.S. and will eventually expanded to users from other educational institutions. The feature seems fitting for the platform and will no doubt provide a unique way for college students to see the career paths of those who have reached success in particular industries. Also, Career Explorer is a way to attract college students (and perhaps even ambitious high school students) as members of the community and perhaps gain loyalty among this age group.

To read the complete article click here.

What is an ePortfolio or Career Portfolio and How Do I Create One?

Today’s Ask Dr. Diane:  When I graduated from high school, I was told to set up a career portfolio.  What is that and how do I do it? 

For a complete explanation for “what is a career portfolio” click here.  The basic definition of a career portfolio is a collection of things that represent your skills and accomplishments.  Like a resume, it contains your education, awards, honors, work experience and strengths. 

There are several ways to develop a career portfolio.  You can find sites where you can pay to upload media you have designed or other things you would like to highlight to potential employers.  There are also a lot of free sites like Linkedin where you can display a lot of your information for others to find you and see your skills and abilities. Many professionals such as educators, journalists, artists and others have used career portfolios for years.  Recently many other types of job-seekers are finding that they want to be able to showcase more of their skills and abilities as well. 

It can take a bit of a time commitment to initially set up your portfolio, but in the end, it will be easier to update and add things once it is prepared. 

Quintcareers.com gives the following examples of things you should include in your portfolio:

  1. Career Summary and Goals: A description of what you stand for (such as work ethic, organizational interests, management philosophy, etc.) and where you see yourself in two to five years.
  2. Professional Philosophy/Mission Statement: A short description of the guiding principles that drive you and give you purpose. Read more in our article, Using a Personal Mission Statement to Chart Your Career Course.
  3. Traditional Resume: A summary of your education, achievements, and work experience, using a chronological or functional format. If you need help developing a resume, visit Quintessential Careers: Fundamentals of a Good Resume.
  4. Scannable/Text-Based Resume: A text-only version of your resume should also be included. More information about this type of resume can be found at: Quintessential Careers: Scannable Resume Fundamentals.
  5. Skills, Abilities and Marketable Qualities: A detailed examination of your skills and experience. This section should include the name of the skill area; the performance or behavior, knowledge, or personal traits that contribute to your success in that skill area; your background and specific experiences that demonstrate your application of the skill.
  6. List of Accomplishments: A detailed listing that highlights the major accomplishments in your career to date. Accomplishments are one of the most important elements of any good job-search. Read more in our article, For Job-Hunting Success: Track and Leverage Your Accomplishments.
  7. Samples of Your Work: A sampling of your best work, including reports, papers, studies, brochures, projects, presentations, etc. Besides print samples, you can also include CD-ROMs, videos, and other multimedia formats.
  8. Research, Publications, Reports: A way to showcase multiple skills, including your written communications abilities. Include any published papers and conference proceedings.
  9. Testimonials and Letters of Recommendations: A collection of any kudos you have received -– from customers, clients, colleagues, past employers, professors, etc. Some experts even suggest including copies of favorable employer evaluations and reviews.
  10. Awards and Honors: A collection of any certificates of awards, honors, and scholarships.
  11. Conference and Workshops: A list of conferences, seminars, and workshops you’ve participated in and/or attended.
  12. Transcripts, Degrees, Licenses, and Certifications: A description of relevant courses, degrees, licenses, and certifications.
  13. Professional Development Activities: A listing of professional associations and conferences attended — and any other professional development activities.
  14. Military records, awards, and badges: A listing of your military service, if applicable.
  15. Volunteering/Community Service: A description of any community service activities, volunteer or pro bono work you have completed, especially as it relates to your career.
  16. References List: A list of three to five people (including full names, titles, addresses, and phone/email) who are willing to speak about your strengths, abilities, and experience. At least one reference should be a former manager. Read more in our article: The Keys to Choosing and Using the Best Job References in Your Job Search.

eHow has a useful article for how to create your online career portfolio for free. 

They also suggest the following tips and warnings:

Tips & Warnings

  • Creating an online portfolio will increase your chance of landing your dream job
  • Always be honest with yourself when displaying your qualifications
  • Give your website address to prospective employers to market yourself
  • Don’t be dishonest because it will backfire!
  • Only give your website to legitimate employers
  • Do not include official transcripts online because it includes your SSN
  • Only give your personal information to only jobs you have applied for
  • Do not include your web portfolio address on your online resume with any online career site such as Monster, Hot Jobs, Vault and Career Path. Read more by clicking here.

The Fox School of Business had an interesting article about how you should spend a moment to Google yourself to see what others might find out about you online.  They reference the following statistics:  44% of hiring managers use google, myspace, and facebook to do online background checks on candidates. Nearly 1/3 of these background checks lead to rejection of a candidate.

Some tips they suggest to create your own online image include:

  1. Join Linkedin.com.  This is a great site that will allow you to create a professional social networking “resume” and allows you the chance to connect to a lot of great contacts.  Your linkedin.com profile will also show up when you google your name.  Use this to your advantage and list all of your strengths, education, and experience using well written short descriptions. 
  2. Start a blog.  Starting a blog is not just for people with uncommon niche interests.  Find a topic you find interesting and is relevant to your professional life and write in it often.  Read other blogs on industry news and comment.  All of these small things will help to create a good social presence for your on the internet. 
  3. Check your Myspace and Facebook profiles.  If there is anything that would give an employer the wrong impression of you, take it down!  Pictures should be professional.  You can stand out from the pack if you use your myspace or facebook page as another tool in your job search strategy.  Not everyone has the attitude of “it’s just a social profile.”  Make sure all privacy settings are enabled so only close friends can see things about you.
  4. For those more web savvy people, start a website or create an online resume.  These can be great additions to your paper resume and you can certainly include a link to your online resume on your paper resume and in any footings or signatures of any emails you send to employers regarding your job search.   You can detail more experiences, share some volunteer experiences and even include pictures, showcase some examples of your work.  Be careful with this though….professionalism is of utmost importance.

A useful student-centered platform for building an eportfolio is available at eportfolio.org.  Once you register, you can set up your portfolio as a student, faculty or institution.  You can then control what goes into your portfolio, who can see it, and can create several versions of it to use based on who you want to view it.  There are fees for this based on how many megabytes of storage you would require. 

In schools, some students are being taught to create web pages using a virtual learning environmental (VLE) that are not as easily accessible outside of the environment in which they are created.  A good alternative for a student who wants a format that is easier to share outside a school environment, would be to get signed up with a free account on Linkedin.  Linkedin has added a lot of features that allows people to showcase more than just work experience.  Users can also import Google Docs presentations, include a WordPress blog, and there are many more options available to update and promote abilities to prospective employers or potential connections.

For an example of a Linkedin portfolio, you can look at mine by clicking here.  To see all of the options I have added to mine, you can send me a request to be linkedin with you.  I accept all invitations.  At that point, you can see how I have incorporated Google Docs, WordPress and other features to display my information.

Top 5 Ways You Should Be Using Linkedin To Find A Job

 

  1.  Input a presentation from Google Docs to showcase your abilities. It is simple to create presentations in Google Docs that are very similar to a PowerPoint presentation.  There is an application you can add within Linkedin that allows you to access the Google Docs presentation.  When your contacts look at your profile page, they will be able to see your presentation.
  2. Use the Question and Answer section to either ask a question and get connected or answer a question and become an expert.  If you go to the “More” tab and pick Answers, you will find this section.  Then click on Career and Education.  You can look for topics that may help you with your career search, ask a question or answer one. Every time you answer a question and someone picks your answer as the best answer, you get one point toward being someone listed with expertise.  You will notice tabs for open questions, closed questions and experts.  Becoming an expert can help promote your skills to more people and open up more job options for you.
  3. Be sure you have combined your outgoing messages your post on your home page with Twitter.  There is a little box you need to check to be sure that any updates you post will not only get posted on Linkedin but also on your Twitter page.  If you do not have a Twitter page, it is easy to set up and free. Just go to Twitter.com.
  4. Import your WordPress blog into Linkedin.  Just as you were able to include Google Docs through adding an application, you can do the same for your blog.  In this way, people will be able to see your blog on your profile page. 
  5. Check out all of the extra add-on applications that are available including:  Polls, Google Presentation, Blog Link, Box-Net, Portfolio Display, SlideShare Presentations, SAP Community Bio, Company Buzz, My Travel, Reading List, Huddle Workspaces, Real Estate Pro, Tweets, Events, and Legal Updates.  If you have a lot of good multi-media to display, Portfolio Display would be a good addition. 

How to Use Google Docs and Linkedin to Get a Job

I often write about different ways to obtain a job.  One of the best ways is through networking and having strong visibility.  A great tool that you can use to accomplish this is Linkedin’s ability to input from Google Docs.

If you don’t have a Google account, I recommend getting one.  It is free and easy to set up.  Go to Google Docs at https://docs.google.com/ to set up your presentation.  Your main page will look something like this.  I have presentations listed here but yours will be blank on the right when you first sign in.

You will need to create a new presentation by going to the create new drop down menu at the top left.  I recommend creating a presentation that highlights “you” and your abilities or accomplishments.  If you are trying to find a job, you need to create a presentation that makes people notice you and want to hire you.

Pick presentation and a window will open up that looks a lot like what you see when you want to create a PowerPoint presentation.

You will create your presentation here just as you would in Powerpoint by adding text and pictures.  When you are finished you will go to the share dropdown menu at the top right and the following window will be displayed.  This is where you can share your presentation by copying the link, or sharing directly into Facebook, Twitter, Gmail and Buzz

This is also where you will decide who can view your presentation.  To make changes, pick “change” to open up a new window.

To see what this actual presentation looks like in Google Docs, click here.

This will allow you to have your presentation viewable on the web.  Once you save this, you can go to Linkedin and be able to add the Google Docs application there.  On your profile page in Linkedin you will see an add applications picture that looks something like this:

Note that the featured app will change so it may show a different picture each time you sign on.  It should be located on the left side of your screen as you scroll down on your profile page. Once you click on the see all applications link at the bottom, it will pull up a list of applications they offer such as:

You will need to click on the Google Presentation icon and that will bring up the following

You will want to be sure that both boxes are checked at the bottom You will need to click on the link that tells you to go to the application where you will see the following:

Mine has a presentation already showing but yours will be blank until you add one.  To do this, you will pick create your presentation which you will do or you will already have done in Google Docs.  When you are finished be sure you pick the share this presentation with my connections link that will be in the lower right corner.

Once you are finished, your presentation will show up on your Linkedin profile page and will look something like this:

Not only will people find out more about you, they will also see that you are technologically savvy.  In today’s competitive job market, this is one more effective tool to use to stand out in the crowd.