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  • How to use LinkedIn in Your Job Search

    In today's competitive job market, finding the perfect job opportunity can be a daunting task. However, with the right tools and strategies, you can streamline your job search process and land your dream job. One such tool that has revolutionized the way professionals search for jobs is LinkedIn. With over 774 million users worldwide, LinkedIn has become the go-to platform for job seekers and recruiters alike. This is how you can leverage the power of LinkedIn to search for jobs effectively. Create a Compelling LinkedIn Profile Your LinkedIn profile serves as your digital resume and is often the first impression recruiters have of you. Therefore, it's crucial to ensure that your profile is complete, up-to-date and showcases your skills and experiences effectively. Here are some key tips for crafting a compelling LinkedIn profile: Profile Picture and Headline: Use a professional-looking profile picture and write a catchy headline that highlights your expertise and career aspirations. Summary: Write a compelling summary that provides an overview of your background, skills, and achievements. Keep it concise yet engaging. Experience and Education: List your work experience and education in detail, including job descriptions, achievements, and relevant coursework. Skills and Endorsements: Highlight your key skills and expertise, and encourage colleagues and connections to endorse you for these skills. Recommendations: Request recommendations from former colleagues or supervisors to add credibility to your profile. Network and Build Connections Networking is a crucial aspect of job searching, and LinkedIn offers ample opportunities to connect with professionals in your industry. Here's how you can effectively network on LinkedIn: Connect Strategically: Connect with colleagues, alumni, industry professionals, and recruiters to expand your network. Personalize your connection requests to increase the likelihood of acceptance. Engage with Content: Like, comment, and share relevant posts and articles to engage with your network and stay top-of-mind. Join Groups: Join LinkedIn groups related to your industry or interests to connect with like-minded professionals and participate in discussions. Attend Events: Explore virtual events and webinars on LinkedIn related to your field to network with industry experts and learn about job opportunities. Utilize LinkedIn's Job Search Features LinkedIn offers powerful job search features that allow you to find relevant job opportunities based on your preferences and qualifications. Here's how you can make the most of these features: Job Search Filters: Use filters such as location, industry, experience level, and company size to narrow down your job search results and find opportunities that align with your preferences. Saved Searches: Save your job search criteria to receive notifications about new job openings that match your preferences. Job Alerts: Enable job alerts to receive email notifications about new job postings that match your saved searches. Follow Companies: Follow companies you're interested in to stay updated on their latest job openings, company news, and updates. Showcase Your Expertise In addition to searching for jobs, LinkedIn provides a platform for showcasing your expertise and building your personal brand. Here's how you can leverage LinkedIn to demonstrate your skills and knowledge: Publish Content: Share articles, blog posts, or industry insights to showcase your expertise and establish yourself as a thought leader in your field. Create a Portfolio: Use the "Featured" section on your profile to showcase your work, such as presentations, projects, or publications. Participate in Discussions: Engage in relevant discussions and comment on posts to demonstrate your knowledge and expertise to your network. Seek Recommendations: Request recommendations from colleagues or clients to validate your skills and expertise. Build Relationships with Recruiters Recruiters play a vital role in the job search process, and building relationships with them can significantly increase your chances of finding job opportunities. Here's how you can connect with recruiters on LinkedIn: Optimize Your Profile: Ensure that your LinkedIn profile is complete and up-to-date, making it easier for recruiters to find and assess your qualifications. Follow Recruiters: Identify and follow recruiters who specialize in your industry or field of interest to stay updated on their job postings and hiring needs. Engage with Recruiters: Like, comment, and share posts from recruiters to engage with them and stay on their radar. Reach Out Directly: If you come across a job posting from a recruiter that interests you, don't hesitate to reach out directly to express your interest and inquire about the opportunity. LinkedIn has revolutionized the way professionals search for jobs and build their careers. By optimizing your profile, networking strategically, utilizing job search features, showcasing your expertise, and building relationships with recruiters, you can maximize your chances of finding the perfect job opportunity. Remember to stay proactive, engaged, and persistent in your job search efforts, and you'll be well on your way to landing your dream job.

  • Staying Motivated in a Frustrating Job Search

    Being rejected is worse when it happens a few times. It gets you demotivated depressed, and confused. You start questioning yourself. "Why is this happening to me? Not now. I need a job or at least an interview to prove myself. I know if I get at least one interview, I will get a job". Remember, almost everyone gets a job. Some are blessed to get an appointment letter and start immediately, while others have to wait, days if not months to land a decent job. The last thing an interviewer wants is a "dejected and depressed employee who cannot handle stress". Easy to say, but it is true. Rarely do the interviewers understand the situation, but they are not to blame. They are looking for the right candidate. Here's what you can keep in mind to stay motivated: 1. It is Part of the Job Search Process Looking for a job is a job in itself. You need to work 09:00 AM to 5:00 PM Sunday through Thursday doing research, scouting competitive companies, ensuring your CV is professionally prepared, setting up google alerts (and even LinkedIn and other job alerts). Make sure you are practicing interview skills throughout. You have got the desire, you have got the ball rolling, you are trying hard and applying for relevant jobs. Sometimes even after doing this for a month, you find nothing, not one call.? Normal. Got ghosted—even after the final round of interviews? Normal. Part of staying positive throughout your search is managing your expectations. Prepare yourself for rejections. Mentally it will make you stronger, and soon you will edge off other job applicants. Results are bound to come. The question is which company and how much would the offer be? Remember your patience and endurance is being tested. 2. It Will Help You in the Future. You could encounter a situation when a hiring manager or interviewer agrees to meet you and then stands you up, or even tells you that you have got the job and then ghosts you. In this instance, reflect on everything that was atypical about your experience, so you can assure yourself you will avoid it in the future. You could have even expected a business plan that you submitted to get you the job, but you later realized that the time and effort you invested in the business plan was used to hire a competing candidate. You are not being treated the right way. Look back on all of your communication with the company previously. Are there red flags you can be on the lookout for the next time? Sometimes, the best way in your job search to move on is to reassure yourself you learned what you needed to so you are not burned again. 3. Get Specific With Your To-Do List When your motivation is low, general job-searching tasks like “network” and “redo resume” can be overwhelming. A great way to instantly make your search seem more manageable is to rework your to-do list to include smaller, more specific tasks. For example, a friend planned out a goal to reach out to three direct contacts one day and three referrals the next for informational interviews. Both were easy to-dos that, over time, helped him reach his broader goal of expanding his network. In addition, when it came to actively apply, instead of telling himself he had to find more jobs in general, he gave himself a weekly target of four to five jobs. This was a realistic goal that allowed him to focus his attention on crafting the best job applications each week (and saved him time from writing a hundred cover letters). 4. Look Up Your Career Role Models When you’re job searching, reading description after description requiring “five to seven years of experience” in a certain field, it is hard to remember the truth about career paths: They are rarely linear. In fact, most successful people made loops, jumps, and a few skids to get to where they are today. So, step away from the job boards, jump onto Linkedin, and search for people who have your dream jobs or who work at companies you are interested in. Looking at the various ways people have gotten to where they are now will likely remind you that there is no straight path to success. Asking people to share a bit about how they got to where they are and some advice for your own search can be incredibly helpful—and motivating. 5. Seek Constructive Criticism from Your Supporters Your biggest fans can also be your most helpful critics—if you ask them to be. That supportive former co-worker, who believed in you, and friend who just gets you, all know your full potential and how you could improve. So, if you’re feeling like you’re trying everything but still getting nowhere, try asking them for some constructive criticism and be open to it rather than defending yourself. Identify where you are struggling, whether it is with resume formatting or interviewing, and ask for advice from the appropriate people. Based on their knowledge of your strengths and weaknesses, they can give specialized, honest advice (that will be motivating and realistic to put into practice than the generic tips you’re reading everywhere). Learn about how to create a perfect "sales pitch" in 30 seconds and practice it over and over again. It could be frustrating practicing, but you must keep going—and soon, you will be able to deliver an effective pitch that you can use when you meet potential contacts, hiring managers, or decision-makers. 6. Put Your Career Goals on Paper “Where do you see yourself in 10 years?” is a question we all try to avoid. But right now, when you’re in a slump, is exactly the right time to answer it. Take some time to make a list of all of your dreams, big and small. Actually putting them on paper will force you to think about what you want to achieve and—better yet—motivate you to see at least one goal (if not all of them) through. Think of it kind of like a to-do list for your career: Seeing things on paper will get you excited to check things off. As an added bonus, seeing your dreams in writing may give you some ideas on how to tie them together. A few days ago I spoke to a family member who has a passion for teaching and is a Communication Manager (now looking for a job). I suggested that she could contact colleges and universities to look for a part-time position as a teacher/trainer of Corporate Communications and even create her own online training material and videos. 7. Take Days Off At one point, I was doing something business development-related every day, from going on informational articles to searching for companies who are hiring. I was feeling burned out. And I found myself losing sight of my main objectives and looking for prospective clients, even if they were not right for my business. What I realized is that the best way to deal with a motivational slump of any sort is to take a few days off. Pre-determined free days—where you get some time off from thinking about resumes, cover letters, and interview questions—can alleviate all those frustrations and help restore your drive. By taking a few days off here and there, I found that I was able to refocus and better tackle the search when I was ready. As a job candidate, you are vulnerable. You are putting yourself out there because you need a job and you want something better for yourself and your family. The last thing you want is to let a bad experience keep you from meeting your ultimate goal. Instead, use it as a drive to keep going, learn from experience, and find a company that will make you feel comfortable and valued from the moment you first apply.

  • 5 Ways to Stay Motivated in a Frustrating Job Hunt

    Another day, another click to “connect” on LinkedIn. After checking—yet again—your stagnant inbox, you close your laptop in defeat. Another call from a recruiter telling you your CV was not shortlisted or your interview was unsuccessful. Your motivation graph drops after searching and applying for so many jobs. If you are struggling for a job, you may want to read more about the best jobs in the UAE during the pandemic. It’s easy to get stuck in this draining cycle. My experience in dealing with people in a job search has taught me that one of the biggest challenges is just maintaining the motivation to continue, especially when you are dealing with rejection and radio silence. But I also know that you can revive your motivation by making simple changes to your job-search approach, focusing less on all those resumes and cover letters, and more on you and what you want. You must climb out of your motivational slump. 1. Get Specific With Your To-Do List When your motivation is low, general job-searching tasks like “network” and “redo resume” can be overwhelming. A great way to instantly make your search seem more manageable is to rework your to-do list to include smaller, more specific tasks. For example, a friend planned out a goal to reach out to three direct contacts one day and three referrals the next for informational interviews. Both were easy to-dos that, over time, helped him reach his broader goal of expanding his network. In addition, when it came to actively apply, instead of telling himself he had to find more jobs in general, he gave himself a weekly target of four to five jobs. This was a realistic goal that allowed him to focus his attention on crafting the best job applications each week (and saved him time from writing a hundred cover letters). 2. Look Up Your Career Role Models When you’re job searching, reading description after description requiring “five to seven years of experience” in a certain field, it is hard to remember the truth about career paths: They are rarely linear. In fact, most successful people made loops, jumps, and a few skids to get to where they are today. So, step away from the job boards, jump onto Linkedin, and search for people who have your dream jobs or who work at companies you are interested in. Looking at the various ways people have gotten to where they are now will likely remind you that there is no straight path to success. Asking people to share a bit about how they got to where they are and some advice for your own search can be incredibly helpful—and motivating. 3. Seek Constructive Criticism from Your Supporters Your biggest fans can also be your most helpful critics—if you ask them to be. That supportive former co-worker, who believed in you, and friend who just gets you, all know your full potential and how you could improve. So, if you’re feeling like you’re trying everything but still getting nowhere, try asking them for some constructive criticism and be open to it rather than defending yourself. Identify where you are struggling, whether it is with resume formatting or interviewing, and ask for advice from the appropriate people. Based on their knowledge of your strengths and weaknesses, they can give specialized, honest advice (that will be motivating and realistic to put into practice than the generic tips you’re reading everywhere). Learn about how to create a perfect "sales pitch" in 30 seconds and practice it over and over again. It could be frustrating practicing, but you must keep going—and soon, you will be able to deliver an effective pitch that you can use when you meet potential contacts, hiring managers, or decision-makers. 4. Put Your Career Goals on Paper “Where do you see yourself in 10 years?” is a question we all try to avoid. But right now, when you’re in a slump, is exactly the right time to answer it. Take some time to make a list of all of your dreams, big and small. Actually putting them on paper will force you to think about what you want to achieve and—better yet—motivate you to see at least one goal (if not all of them) through. Think of it kind of like a to-do list for your career: Seeing things on paper will get you excited to check things off. As an added bonus, seeing your dreams in writing may give you some ideas on how to tie them together. A few days ago I spoke to a family member who has a passion for teaching and is a Communication Manager (now looking for a job). I suggested that she could contact colleges and universities to look for a part-time position as a teacher/trainer of Corporate Communications and even create her own online training material and videos. 5. Take Days Off At one point, I was doing something business development-related every day, from going on informational articles to searching for companies who are hiring. I was feeling burned out. And I found myself losing sight of my main objectives and looking for prospective clients, even if they were not right for my business. What I realized is that the best way to deal with a motivational slump of any sort is to take a few days off. Pre-determined free days—where you get some time off from thinking about resumes, cover letters, and interview questions—can alleviate all those frustrations and help restore your drive. By taking a few days off here and there, I found that I was able to refocus and better tackle the search when I was ready. You will stumble a few times during this process, and, along the way, learn the importance of making the search about you—not just the job. Give yourself manageable goals, time to regroup, and countless, countless lists, which all helped me to power through and now lead a recruitment company. The job search doesn’t have to be a daunting task every time you open your laptop. These tips can work for you.

  • Making the Best Use of Social Media in your Job Search

    45% of hiring managers scout social media and online networks to search for suitable candidates. Incomplete profiles deter them from proceeding, while a well maintained and clean profile creates an impression. Your online image says a lot about you - who you are connected with, what you post and your followings, helps build your image. Below are 8 tips to keep a clean and professional media board. 1. Privatize your Accounts Simply go to your settings and choose who you would want to see your activity. You can restrict your privacy settings to "friends only" if you like. But if you want to maintain a public image then allow everyone to access what you post. 2. Delete Inappropriate Posts Be careful of controversial posts, especially those that can create a valid disagreement. You may not want a company, recruiter or hiring manager to get the wrong or form biased opinion about you even before an interview. Keep your profiles personal / professional, and engaging. 3. Deactivate Old Accounts I discovered 4 Facebook accounts that I had and got about deleting 2 of them. Had I not looked, I may not have found them. Maintain one account per media. Check each social media tool to confirmed the same and build an articulated profile in each to maximize the tools and your presence. You may even find some "free" social media integrators that allow you to post on multiple media at one time. 4. Photo's and Video's It is so good to have nice pictures and memories with family, friends, colleagues and managers. Images and video's speak so much more. Your body language, the environment, the people you are with and the activity, speaks volumes are who you are. Try and have good combination of images and video's. 5. Your Biography This will be an important point of consideration during recruiting. You can really talk about yourself and and what you do, what and who inspires you, how you grew, what your passions are and what prompted you to develop a career in your chosen field . Connect with, share and even post articles that are of interest to you, both personally and professionally. This is the best way to explain why you could be the best hire. 6. Customize Your URLs A customized handle and URL will take less than a minute and looks more professional and intentional. 7. Post Relevant Information Post, share, or retweet industry related news, video's, quotes and articles. When a hiring manager sees that your interests and that of the company are in line, you are more likely to be considered for the position. 8. Follow Inspirational Your education, experience and interests (or passions) tells a hiring manager how updated you are with social, political and economic trends. Again be cautious of controversial political, religious or cultural beliefs since all may not share the same You may want to restrict any such content (if you do have to a smaller and closer audience like family and close friends) You may want to follow key influencers. Lastly, make smart social media choices. Before you post something, contemplate whether it matches the online presence you wish to uphold. Think of it this way: If a hiring manager brought it up in an interview, would you be able to explain why you posted it?

  • Clean Up Your Social Media (Hiring Managers Really Look at It)

    What if I told you that we all have two resumes? The first is the crisp white sheet sprinkled with bullet points and carefully chosen verbs. On it are descriptions of our education, the positions we’ve held, and acquired skills. This one we reserve for job interviews. And then there are our other “resumes:” the Instagram account that reveals our love for happy hour, the Twitter account turned gossip column and the Facebook profile that has pictures that are just a bit too NSFW. The reality is that hiring managers are looking at your social media just as thoroughly as your resume or cover letter. In fact, 45% of hiring managers use social media to learn more about potential candidates. Which means you want it to be just as pristine. But cleaning up your online image doesn’t mean you need to change everything about who you are. It just means you may need to monitor how you post or what you share (and with whom). Here are eight tips that’ll help you project your best online self—without sacrificing your personality. 1. Make Your Accounts Private Let’s start here in case companies are already looking at your social media. Simply go to your settings and choose only “friends” to see your activity. Also, if you really want your profiles to remain personal, maybe only accept friend requests from people you know and not anyone in your professional network, like old bosses or co-workers. That said, if you want to remain public, you should… 2. Hide or Delete Any Inappropriate Posts These posts don’t need to go away completely! You can always archive Instagram photos, save Snapchats to memories, hide content from your Facebook timeline, or set your settings to “Only me” so certain posts are private. 3. Deactivate Old Accounts Like your middle school YouTube account that’s been floating on the internet for far too long. If you wouldn’t care to revisit your teenage self, you probably don’t want hiring managers to, either. Even if you don’t think you have any, google yourself! You might be surprised by what you forgot you signed up for. 4. Add the Right Photos Your photo is literally the first thing hiring managers see when they find you online. No need to get a professional headshot, but do make sure that your profile and cover photos are professional and easily visible (and actually have one, none of that Twitter egg nonsense). 5. Add a Professional Bio This is the best way to explain who you are, what makes you unique, and why you’re the perfect hire. Not sure how to write one? Here’s an article that can help you craft the perfect bio for each platform. 6. Edit Your Handles and URLs Because a custom URL takes less than a minute to create and looks far more intentional. 7. Post-Industry-Related News, Quotes, or Articles Post, share, or retweet anything related to the industry you’re in or want to be a part of. When a hiring manager sees that the mission of their company falls in line with your own brand, they’re even more likely to consider you for a position. 8. Follow Inspiring People and Companies Blogs, news sources, and any other website you love to count, too! This tells managers what you’re passionate about, which leaders you admire, and what trends you’re up-to-date on. As weird as it may seem, we also are who we follow. Use career-graphed Twitter and LinkedIn influencers to follow. Lastly, make smart social media choices. Before you post something, contemplate whether it matches the online presence you wish to uphold. Think of it this way: If a hiring manager brought it up in an interview, would you be able to explain why you posted it?

  • Read This If You Are Not Getting Interview Calls

    1. Your Resume Is Not Tailored Tailor making your CV is very important. Almost every candidate uses the same CV to apply for all jobs. However, every job description is different and so is every requirement. It is important that you read and understand the job description and use the same keywords, terminologies, etc when applying for a particular job. This does not mean that you must misrepresent yourself, absolutely not. You however need to fine-tune your application to meet the requirements. Employers receive a few hundred resumes for every job. It is important that your CV stands out. Hence changes must be made in your cover letter and modifications to the job description point in your CV when applying for jobs. Keep track of which application was sent and to whom. 2. Your Resume Isn’t ATS Compliant 85% of companies use some form of an ATS (Applicant Tracking System) with the figure rising to 98% for multinationals. This means that you now have an AI or robot reading and interpreting data on your CV and parsing it into the respective fields. It also highlights matching criteria your CV will have for a particular job. ATS systems do not recognize colors, tables, charts, and infographics. They read pure black and white, top to bottom and left to right. Even column-based CVs struggle to meet the criteria of an ATS. Hence it is important that you follow the below guidelines. Avoid fancy formatting: Avoid tables, graphics, and columns. Include important keywords: Read the job description carefully. If there are similar words or industry jargon or even job titles, modify your CV to meet the same word without changing the original meaning of your role or lying on your CV. Use standard section headings: Use standard headings like “Work Experience”, “Education" and "Skills". Avoid using "Academia" to substitute "Education" or History to replace "Work Experience". Simple CVs are best. 3. You’re Applying to the Wrong Jobs Many job applicants apply to every company for every job opening. The rejection rate and time wastage are obviously high. Read the job description carefully. Note the job title, required skills, and experience. Ascertain the success rate of your CV. It is not about your ability to do the job but has more to do with your experience and skills used in the past. This puts your application at an advantage compared to others. 4. You’re Not Applying to Enough Jobs Just like the phrase "there is no perfect candidate", there is also no perfect job. Being picky about a job can prove disadvantageous, especially with tough competition. This does not mean that you take on any job you get. But being able to draw a lower passing line in your selection criteria, allows more applications and interview possibilities and then proper due diligence on which job is best to accept. A combination of "Ideal Company" + "Ideal Job Description" + "Ideal salary", will always be a challenge. 2 of the three should be very good and one of the three could be considered. 5. You’re Not Networking Networking is probably the best source of finding quality and reliable jobs. Connect with companies, hiring managers, and recruiters who are from the same industry or product, or service. Create awareness about who you are and what you do. Attend events, especially those that you are passionate about or interested in. Meet people and introduce yourself. Fund out more about them and what they do. Be genuinely interested. Share your search about ex-managers, colleagues, and friends who can vouch for you and connect you to their internal hiring teams.

  • Intelligent Questions to Ask an Interviewer

    The hiring manager asks you an interview question you know is a signal that things are about to wrap up: “Do you have any questions for me?” No matter how much power you might feel employers hold in the situation, a job interview is not just a chance for the hiring manager to grill you—it is your opportunity to sniff out whether a position would be as good for you as you would be for the position. So it is important to ask some questions of your own. What do you want to know about the role? The company? The department? The team? The person interviewing you who may be your future boss? coworkers? To get you thinking, I have put together a list of the best questions to ask in an interview. I definitely do not suggest asking all of them rapid-fire—some of this will be covered during the course of your discussion. Top tips for asking employer questions in a job interview Before we get to the list, here are a few pointers to keep in mind: Don’t say you have no questions. You probably already know that whether you are stressed or relaxed, whether you think have fumbled the conversation badly or you have got this job in the bag, the worst thing you could say is, “No, I don't have any questions.” Be flexible. It’s OK to jot down a few questions ahead of your interview but don’t be afraid to deviate from the list if your questions have already been answered and/or if your discussion prompts a few more questions you would like answered. You don’t want to sound like you are reading the questions off an internet list rather than having a real conversation. It maybe even good to take important points during the interview which can be asked as questions at the end. Ask a few specific questions. Show you are invested and you have been paying attention throughout the interview process by customizing your questions to the specific position and company—and reminding your interviewers of the background knowledge and experience you bring to the role. Don’t just ask questions at the end. Interviews work best when they are a conversation, so do not be afraid to pose questions when it makes sense throughout the conversation. Ask questions you really want to know the answers to. Do not only ask questions you think will impress your interviewer. This is your chance to ask about the topics you are really curious about—and will affect whether you even want the job. Maybe a project that really excited you when you read the job description hasn’t come up during the interview. Perhaps it’s not clear to you what the job actually entails, and you want to ask what a typical day looks like. Best questions to ask about the job Make sure you know exactly what the day-to-day responsibilities of the job will be—both now and in the future. This will help you make an informed decision if and when that job offer comes and avoid toxic workplace. What does a typical day or week look like in this role? What are the most immediate projects that need to be addressed? Can you show me examples of projects I’d be working on? What types of skills is the team missing that you’re looking to fill with a new hire? What are the biggest challenges that someone in this position would face? Is this a new role or will I be taking over for an employee who’s leaving? How does this position contribute to the company overall? Do you expect the main responsibilities for this position to change in the next six months to a year? Top questions to ask about training and professional development Think of each new opportunity not just as a job, but as the next step on your path to career success. Will this position help you get there? What does your onboarding process look like? What learning and professional development opportunities are available to your employees? Will there be opportunities for stretch assignments where I can learn and use new skills? Are there opportunities for advancement within the company? Where have successful employees previously in this position progressed to? Common questions to ask about how your success will be evaluated Understanding how your potential new manager will measure your success is key to understanding their managerial style as well as company or team priorities. What are the most important things you’d like to see someone accomplish in the first 30, 60, and 90 days on the job? What are the performance expectations of this position over the first 12 months? What is the performance review process like here? How often would I be formally reviewed? What metrics or goals will my performance be evaluated against? Smart questions to ask about the interviewer Asking these questions shows that you’re interested in your interviewer as a person—and that’s a great way to build rapport with a future colleague. How long have you been with the company? Has your role changed since you’ve been here? What did you do before this? Why did you come to this company? What’s your favorite part about working here? What’s one challenge you occasionally or regularly face in your job? What part of your job are you most excited about over the next few months? Best questions to ask about the company Why not learn a little bit about where you might work? A job isn’t just about your day-to-day to-do list. You will likely be happier with an employer that shares similar values to yours and is headed in a direction you’re on board with. I’ve read about the company’s founding, but can you tell me more about another significant company development? What direction do you see this company heading in over the next few years? What can you tell me about your new products or plans for growth? What are the current goals that the company is focused on, and how does this team work to support hitting those goals? What gets you most excited about the company’s future? What are the company’s most important values? (Note: Make sure this isn’t easily Google-able!) How does the company ensure it’s upholding its values? Smart questions to ask about the team The people you work with day in and day out can really make or break your work life. Ask some questions to uncover whether it’s the right team for you. Can you tell me about the team I will be working with? Who will I work with most closely? Who will I report to directly? Can you tell me about my direct reports? What are the team’s biggest strengths and challenges? Do you expect to hire more people in this department in the next six months? Which other departments work most closely with this one and how? Creative questions to ask about the culture You do not want to end up at a workplace where all socialization happens at happy hour if you do not drink or you need to get home to your kids, or where everyone is focused solely on their own work if you thrive in a collaborative environment, for example. So make sure you ask about what’s important to you when it comes to company culture. How would you describe the work environment here—is the work typically more collaborative or more independent? How does the team form and maintain strong bonds? Can you tell me about the last company event you did together? What’s your favorite office tradition? What do you and the team usually do for lunch? Does anyone at the company or on this team hang out outside the office? Do you ever do joint events with other companies or departments? What’s different about working here than anywhere else you’ve worked? How has the company changed since you joined? How has the organization overcome challenges with remote work? Best questions to ask about next steps Before you leave, make sure the interviewer has all the information they need and that you’re clear on what you can expect going forward. (Just don’t make this the very first thing you ask when they kick it to you!) What are the next steps in the interview process? Is there anything else I can provide you with that would be helpful? Can I answer any final questions for you?

  • Using Education & Skills in Your Resume

    Crafting a compelling curriculum vitae (CV) is crucial, especially for fresh university graduates. Your education section serves as the cornerstone of your CV, shaping your career trajectory. Here are essential tips to tailor-make this section, ensuring your CV stands out without being excessively lengthy. If you find yourself at a career crossroads, don't fret. Embrace diverse experiences, as they often enrich your professional journey. I navigated from engineering to IT, then delved into sales, marketing, and eventually recruitment and executive search. Despite initial uncertainty, I discovered passion and fulfillment in each role. Remember, every experience, whether deemed wasted or invested, contributes to your growth and versatility. Now, let’s delve into the crucial elements of crafting your education section: Education Importance: For fresh graduates, qualifications, training, and projects take precedence. However, learning is a lifelong endeavor, regardless of age. Continuous education enhances expertise and adaptability. Experience First: Unless freshly graduated, prioritize experience over education. Recent job roles often carry more weight in securing employment than alma mater. Reverse Chronological: Arrange educational background in reverse chronological order, starting with the latest or highest degree attained. However, prioritize older coursework if it aligns closely with job requirements. Omit Dates: Exclude graduation dates, as relevance lies in possessing the degree, not when it was obtained. Highlight Honors: If you graduated with honors, such as summa cum laude, emphasize these distinctions. While GPA is optional, showcasing academic achievements adds credibility. Include Continuing Education: Incorporate ongoing or online courses to bolster your educational profile, demonstrating commitment to skill enhancement. Skills, Awards, and Interests List Your Skills: Create a section detailing relevant skills for the position, excluding basic proficiencies like email or Microsoft Word. Highlight specialized skills and certifications pertinent to the role. Subdivide Skills: Organize skills into distinct categories, such as language proficiency or software expertise, for clarity and emphasis. Show Personality: Consider including an “Interests” section showcasing hobbies relevant to the job. Align personal pursuits with professional aspirations to convey well-roundedness. Avoid Controversial Interests: Exercise discretion when sharing personal interests to avoid potential bias. Focus on activities that reflect positively on your character and align with the job role. Boast Your Awards: Include awards and accolades received, emphasizing their significance and relevance. Whether company-specific honors or personal achievements highlight their impact on your performance. Crafting an effective CV requires meticulous attention to detail and a strategic presentation of your qualifications and experiences. By following these guidelines, you can tailor your education section to reflect your strengths and aspirations succinctly. Remember, your CV is a dynamic document that evolves with your professional journey, so keep it updated and relevant to your career goals.

  • "The Impact of Executive Recruiting on Corporate Strategy: A Comprehensive Analysis"

    In the dynamic and competitive landscape of today's business world, the importance of effective leadership cannot be overstated. For companies aiming to stay ahead of the curve, securing top executive talent is paramount. Executive recruiting, also known as headhunting or executive search, plays a pivotal role in this process. Let's explore the intricacies of executive recruiting, its significance, strategies, challenges, and emerging trends. Understanding Executive Recruiting: Executive recruiting is a specialized form of talent acquisition focused on identifying, attracting, and hiring senior-level executives for organizations. These executives typically occupy C-suite positions such as CEOs, CFOs, COOs, and other high-ranking roles. Unlike traditional recruitment methods, executive recruiting requires a nuanced approach tailored to the unique needs and expectations of top-level candidates and their prospective employers. The Significance of Executive Recruiting: Effective leadership is the cornerstone of organizational success. Executives shape corporate strategy, drive innovation, foster a culture of excellence, and steer companies through times of change and uncertainty. Consequently, recruiting top-tier executives is critical for businesses aiming to achieve their strategic objectives, enhance competitiveness, and sustain long-term growth. Strategies for Successful Executive Recruiting: Define Clear Objectives: Before initiating the executive search process, organizations must articulate their strategic goals, culture, and leadership requirements. This involves identifying the specific skills, experience, and personal attributes sought in prospective executives. Partner with Executive Search Firms: Engaging reputable executive search firms can streamline recruitment and access a broader talent pool. These firms leverage their industry expertise, networks, and resources to identify and attract top executive talent that aligns with the client's needs. Cultivate Employer Branding: A compelling employer brand enhances the attractiveness of an organization to prospective executives. Companies should proactively communicate their values, culture, career opportunities, and commitment to employee development to differentiate themselves in the talent market. Leverage Networking and Referrals: Networking remains a powerful tool in executive recruiting. Encouraging employee referrals, attending industry events, and cultivating relationships with industry leaders can yield valuable connections and potential executive candidates. Conduct Rigorous Assessment: Evaluating executive candidates goes beyond assessing their qualifications and experience. It involves comprehensive interviews, psychometric assessments, reference checks, and cultural fit evaluations to ensure alignment with the organization's strategic direction and values. Challenges: Despite its importance, executive recruiting presents unique challenges that require careful navigation: Talent Shortage: The demand for top executive talent often outstrips the supply, leading to intense competition among organizations vying for the same candidates. Candidate Expectations: Executives possess high expectations regarding compensation, career advancement opportunities, work-life balance, and organizational culture, making it challenging for companies to meet their diverse needs. Cultural Fit: Ensuring alignment between the candidate's values, leadership style, and organizational culture is crucial for long-term success. However, assessing cultural fit can be subjective and prone to bias. Confidentiality: Maintaining confidentiality throughout the executive search process is essential to protect the reputation of both candidates and clients. Any breach of confidentiality can jeopardize trust and credibility. Succession Planning: Effective succession planning is integral to leadership continuity and organizational resilience. However, identifying and developing internal talent to fill executive roles requires foresight, investment, and strategic alignment. Emerging Trends: As the business landscape evolves, executive recruiting continues to adapt to emerging trends and technologies: Diversity and Inclusion: There is a growing emphasis on promoting diversity and inclusion in executive recruitment to foster innovation, enhance decision-making, and reflect the diverse perspectives of stakeholders. Remote Recruitment: The rise of remote work has transformed the executive recruiting process, enabling organizations to access a global talent pool and adopt virtual assessment methods. Data-Driven Insights: Executive search firms leverage data analytics and artificial intelligence to identify high-potential candidates, predict job fit, and optimize recruitment. Hybrid Leadership Models: Organizations are exploring hybrid leadership models that combine traditional executive roles with emerging roles such as Chief Digital Officer (CDO) or Chief Sustainability Officer (CSO) to address evolving business priorities. Continuous Talent Development: Executive recruiting is shifting towards a more holistic approach encompassing talent development, coaching, and mentoring to nurture future leaders and enhance leadership effectiveness. Executive recruiting plays a pivotal role in shaping the success and sustainability of organizations in an increasingly complex and competitive business environment. By adopting effective strategies, navigating challenges, and embracing emerging trends, companies can secure top executive talent that drives innovation, fosters growth, and ensures long-term prosperity. As the landscape evolves, staying attuned to evolving best practices and leveraging innovative solutions will be essential for maintaining a competitive edge in executive recruiting.

  • Understanding The Ideal Length of Your Resume

    It is a myth that the ideal length of your resume should be one page. In fact I have read resumes that are one page to up to 13 pages. Of course a 13 page resume gets too lengthy and time consuming so I have not read all of it. But most resumes tend to range between a single page and three pages. When to Use a One-Page Resume When you are a Fresh Graduate: As a fresh graduate, work experience is not one of your strengths and hence the main area of focus is going to be your education, skills, languages, project work, references and your career objective. The is not going to be too much information to warrant a longer resume. When You are Changing Careers: Changing careers will not require you to list your professional expertise and accomplishments in your earlier roles, but will need to be designed keeping your target job in mind. Hence your education, training, key skills and work experience will contain less information. Make sure your resume clearly directs the reader to your new ambition else the hiring manager will be reading irrelevant information and most likely reject your application. Focus on transferable skills and new training/education and make a much stronger case as to why you’re a great candidate for this particular role. When You Have Not Changed Jobs: If you have worked for only one or two employers even after 15-20 years, then focus on an achievement based resume. There is no need to describe 40 points in your job description. You are best positioned for a brief and to the point resume. Statistically 50-80% hiring managers read a single page resume. When to Use a Two-Page Resume A two page resume is ideal when you have eight or more years of professional experience, several qualifications, achievements, projects and key skills. You have more space to incorporate relevant content, highlight achievements and brief job description points. The last 10 years of your professional career is most important to hiring managers and decision makers. You can omit part time or internship roles early on in your career and have more recent achievements highlighted. Statistically 60% hiring managers read resumes that are 2 pages. When to Use Three Pages or More This type of resume length is more appropriate for candidates who not only have extensive work experience, but also publications, patents and licenses in addition to 10+ years of work experience, an array of qualifications, skills and achievements. Statistically 30%-40% hiring managers read resume that are 2 pages. You can create links to external sites (incorporate permission or protection) to reduce on-page content. Formatting Your CV is Basic and Imperative The length of your resume is not as important as the contents. Hence there should be a bigger focus of creating an "achievement based resume" highlighting "key selling points" that makes your resume stand out. Ensure that your resume is formatted for margin and paragraph spacing. Use simple fonts and make sure there is same font size (10-12 is ideal) for all text and the same for all side headings(11-12 is ideal). Make best use of "keywords". These keywords are noticed immediately and it may be advisable to "bold" them. Keywords are those words that are work or industry specific like terminologies, brand, model numbers etc. eg "balance sheet", "sales proposal", "SEO", "consumer electronics", "profit" etc. Maintain 10-12 bullet points per job description. Develop an achievement based resume. Every point must contain an accomplishment. In case it does not then use the most important job description points first. Try and use charts, infographics. Avoid cramming too much text. Smart name your resume e.g. Dinesh DSouza, Sales Manager. Do not save your resume using names such as "CV.doc" OR "DineshDSouza.pdf". Use a combination of your name and position. Do a print preview to see how it appears. Maximize space utilization from left to right. Avoid "space pockets". Most hiring managers do not discount candidates based on the length of their CV. However, you would want them to read your resume and make an informed decision. Long resume have the disadvantage of dissuading the reader from reading its contents, even though they provide a lot of information. Remember, the objective of your resume is "to get you an interview". The objective of your interview is "to get the job". It is best to reserve detailed information to be shared at the interview.

  • 100% Qualified but You're Not Getting Hired !

    Job searches can be very frustrating especially if you are getting interview calls, and attending one or 2 rounds of good interviews but alas still not getting a job or the much-wanted offer letter. You keep hearing that, while you were a finalist, but the decision-makers went with someone who “was better suited for the job.” or maybe you did not hear anything back at all. The good news is: that you are getting interviews. You simply need to change how you handle that one part of the process. This is how to diagnose what’s holding you back—and fix it. 1. You’re Qualified But Boring Thinking back on your interview, you feel good about it. You had a reasonable answer to every question and made no major mistakes. Nothing really sticks out, but you know you did a good, solid job. Unfortunately, that’s generally not enough to land an offer. Hiring managers often lead multiple interviews a day, sometimes back-to-back. Even if you have strong qualifications, you’ll have a hard time finding your way onto the offer list—let alone the top spot—if he or she has to go back to their notes to even remember who you are. The Approach The ideal applicant comes off as both able to do the job and like someone you’d want to spend time with—in his words, “warm and competent.” If you were very personable but lacked certain technical skills, you would need to build those skills to round out your application (say, by enrolling in a course). You’re on the other side of things, you’ve got the experience, but you’ll want to get better at connecting with the interviewer and make yourself stand out. The best way to do that is to practice. So, don’t just rehearse what you’re going to say in your head. Ask a good friend to meet over coffee and practice your responses. Have him/her point out if you’re really standing out by your warmth, confidence, smile, or simply "ordinary". 2. You’re Qualified, But You Lack Interview Skills Do you know someone who’s super smart, but for whatever reason, just isn’t a good test-taker? They get nervous, they feel boxed in, they choke—well, the same thing can happen in interviews. It could be that you have the exact right qualifications to get in the door, but once you’re sitting across from the hiring manager you repeatedly put your foot in your mouth. Maybe you throw your old boss or colleagues under the bus, so you don’t come off like a team player. Maybe you ask questions that make it clear you didn’t do your research. Maybe you don’t ask any questions at all. Maybe you skip the thank you note because you think it doesn’t really matter. The Approach It might not seem fair that you have to “play by the rules” if you’re experienced enough to start tomorrow. But truth talk: You do. So step one is accepting that—just like a poor test-taker needs to improve how they take them —you’ll want to learn more about interviewing. From there, take these steps. Step one: Read all you can about interview preparation, including answering different types of cultural, team, and situation-based questions. Step two: Ask yourself if there’s a particular moment in an interview, in which you always feel stumped. Do you get uncomfortable when it comes to discussing salary or maybe you have been leaving it to the interviewers to guess? Maybe you’re still not sure what to say when asked “What’s your biggest weakness?” These conversations are challenging, so it’s OK to admit that you’re struggling with certain aspects. Step three: Once you’ve identified where you can improve, fix it. If you want someone to guide you through it, reach out to a friend or an interview coach. 3. You’re Qualified, But Desperate When asked why you want the job, you tell the truth—the whole truth. Maybe you gush about how this is your dream company. Maybe you get real about how you would take just about anything to leave your current job and, you’re perfectly suited for this role. Honesty is the best policy—right? Wrong. If you make it seem like hiring you is a big favor, the interviewer is likely to pass over you for someone who frames it as something that would benefit them and the company. The Approach As with anything else, it’s possible to be too honest. You can tell your friend that the new recipe she made is not your favorite, without saying it’s the most disgusting thing you’ve ever eaten. Similarly, you can show your passion for a company by giving thoughtful answers to what drew you to apply and how you’d approach potential projects. Remember, if you put all of your emphasis on why you want this job, odds are you’re not spending enough time on why they’d benefit from hiring you (which is, after all, their motivation). So, for every time you list something you love about the company, list one way you’d be able to support, innovate, or grow something there. Checking everything off the position description may get you in the door. But to surpass other qualified candidates and land an offer, make sure you’re taking the ball to the goal, and scoring.

  • 10 Most Common Job Interview Mistakes

    Over the last 2 decades, I have interviewed more than 4000 candidates. I have also gathered feedback from our clients on candidate interviews over the last several years. I am surprised at the basic interview mistakes that most candidates make. Here are some of them and probably worth your read. 1. Arriving late The ground rule of an interview is "if you are on time, you are late". You must arrive 10-15 minutes before your scheduled time. Keep time for traffic delays, parking issues, elevator problems, and incorrect routes. Arriving early allows you to get used to the surroundings, accept the glass of water (to calm your nerves), pay attention to the office staff and the work culture, and brush up on last-minute reviews. You will be calm and confident to face the interviewers. 2. Arriving too early On the flip side, arriving too early can cause you to be too relaxed and when the time arrives, you have lost some of the drive and enthusiasm you had when you walked into the office. 3. Appearing unpolished or too fashionable Appearing professional is very important. A light-colored formal shirt and a dark trouser with a matching tie is best for the gents. Make sure your hair is neatly combed and your shoes are polished. A blazer, jacket or suit is very good too. Interviewers sometimes catch the shoes first. It shows effort and attention to detail. For the ladies, formal trousers or a business skirt with formal shoes is very important. Avoid traditional attire (unless you are a UAE national). Avoid flashy jewelry, ambitious eyewear, or too much perfume. 4. Not bringing a resume Most interviewers will have your resume before you arrive. However, it is best to carry 2-3 copies just in case there is a panel interview or a last-minute senior manager decides to join in. You will come out as someone prepared. 5. Displaying low energy Low energy, lack of enthusiasm, fatigue or tiredness, poor body language (not maintaining eye contact with all interviewers, slouching when sitting, and a soft or too loud voice do not reflect well on you. Companies see this as rubbing off on others which they do not want. Sit upright, ensure you have had a good night's sleep, and you are not rushing through public transport to make it in on time for the interview. Have had a glass of water and taken a deep breath, before your interview. Water calms nerves. A confident handshake (the pandemic may prevent this now) is important too (unless a lady may not want to shake hands) 6. Unprepared on your Resume If is very important that you have read your resume a few times the previous day to ensure you know your resume well. It is ok to refer to your resume during the interview, but even better if you know it well. You may even want to carry a notebook to take down notes during the interview (make sure you ask permission first). These notes can help you do a review later. 7. Lack of Company and Interviewer Research Make sure you have done good research on the company's website, social media presence, news articles, recent publications, etc. Information has the power to influence your interviewers and others and also show how much time and effort you invested in preparing yourself. Try and read about the interviewers. You will know their backgrounds and use it to impress. 8. No Questions Most interviewers leave time at the end to answer questions. The questions you ask often reveal the way you think and what’s important to you. It also shows that you care enough about the job that you want to know more. Not having the right questions could indicate you do not care enough. Some questions like Is this a new or replacement position? What has been lacking in this role that I could bring? What is the company's work culture like? What would be expected of me in the first 30-60-90 days? If my performance evaluation go well, what sort of career progression could I expect? 9. Forgetting to Follow up Following up is part of the interviewing process. Hiring managers test to see how much the candidate wants the job. Your follow up must come through within 24 hours of your interview and then if there is now reply again after 48 hours. 10. Following up too Aggressively Chasing the interviewer can have adverse effects like putting the interviewer off and making him/her avoid your calls and not replying to your emails. Maintain a professional follow-up once a week to 10 days, after the initial follow-ups until a decision is made.

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