“How to Get the Job When You Don’t Have the Experience” on LinkedIn

18 08 2014

Hello Everyone,

I saw this great article on my LinkedIn feed last week, and James Citrin makes some really good points on what to do if you are a recent graduate — or an experienced professional who wants to pursue new a career direction or go after your passion.

Now, I encourage you to go out and GO FOR IT and find a job you’ll love!

Warmly,

Sue

Article link:
https://www.linkedin.com/today/post/article/20140811235043-203184238-how-to-overcome-the-permission-paradox-you-can-t-get-the-job-without-the-experience-but-you-can-t-get-the-experience-without-the-job

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How to Get the Job When You Don’t Have the Experience
By James Citrin (posted on LinkedIn)

“The Permission Paradox” – You can’t get the job without the experience but you can’t get the experience without the job – is one of the great career Catch-22s. This challenge will confront you over the lifetime of your career, whether you’re trying to break into the work force or you’re to become a CEO for the first time. While the phenomenon can be frustrating no matter what your level, the Permission Paradox is especially challenging for today’s aspiring young professional and recent graduates.

Overcoming this conundrum is fundamental both to launching your career successfully and thriving over the long term. You are confident in your abilities if only you’re given the chance. The hard part is getting the shot to show what you can do.

The Permission Paradox can be a paralyzing obstacle and can often be a self-fulfilling prophecy. A distinguishing characteristic of the most successful professionals – at every stage – is that they find ways to gain access to attractive opportunities. And when they do, they deliver and make good on that leap of faith that someone took on them. One of the keys to overcoming the Permission Paradox is recognizing that when you apply for any job you will be evaluated along two different dimensions: your potential to add value in the future and your track record in the area most central to the job. Depending on the seniority of the position, these two sources of value – your potential and your experience – will be weighted in different proportions, like the scales of justice. As a general rule, the earlier you are in your career, the greater the importance of your potential value.

Your potential value is best demonstrated by your attitude, enthusiasm, work ethic, communications skills, curiosity/quality of your questions, willingness to learn, and your knowledge of the company and role. Beyond showing your potential, however, here are five specific strategies you can deploy to overcome the Permission Paradox in the early days of your career.

Five Permission Strategies

1. Get Credentials.
One of the most logical ways to gain permission is to obtain relevant credentials. This can be in the form of a specialized degree or targeted training. One of the hottest areas in the economy right now, no surprise, is computer programming. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that by 2020, there will be a gigantic demand-supply gap, with one million computer programming jobs going unfilled. Traditional computer science programs will not be able to meet this need. It turns out that many companies seeking programmers actually don’t require degrees in computer science to get a job. At Google, for example, according to The Wall Street Journal, nearly 15 percent of the team members who work in programming don’t have a college degree. With training at places such as Codeacademy, which reportedly has had 24 million people around the world take one or more of its courses, you can develop proficiency in a period of months. With this credential, you’ll have enough experience to break in for a first job and then you’ll be in the same position as other entry-level programmers to perform and thrive. So go ahead, pick your field of interest, whether it be coding, finance, aviation, or the business of art, and find a respected credential-granting school or organization and pursue it. One effective finance program that promises to deliver “knowledge, experience, and opportunity” over the course of a summer, for example, is the Tuck Business Bridge Program at Dartmouth College. If you want to break into a career in art, check out Christie’s Education, which offers degree and non-degree programs in both the business of art and art itself. And if you dream of flying airplanes for a living, take a look at ATP Flight School’s Airline Career Pilot Program, which provides airline-oriented flight training at a fixed cost in the shortest time frame.

2. Get Creative.
Laura Chambers has run University Programs at eBay where her team of 40 was responsible for setting and hitting aggressive recruitment goals, and ensuring that the interns and new college graduates have high-quality experiences. She therefore speaks with expertise and practical experience on the topic of breaking into companies after college. Laura’s advice, especially if you don’t have a technical or specialized degree, is to get creative so that you can stand out from the crowd. “Volunteer at a start-up,” she suggests and “get your hands dirty. You will have the opportunity to do a wide variety of activities which will help you find what you love and build some skills at the same time.” This will also enable you to talk about your experience, not just your potential. She also advises to develop a customized approach for companies you target. “If you want to work at eBay, Inc., for example,” she says, “start a small business buying and selling on eBay or using PayPal, and be prepared to talk about the pros and cons of that experience.” It doesn’t cost have to cost too much, other than your time and initiative, to create a few video or blog posts about your experience. Maybe these can get picked up by media. At the very least they will give you something to show to complement your resume.

3. Be Willing to Start at the Bottom.
If you are a college graduate, you may feel (and frankly be) overqualified for many entry-level jobs. But you have to start somewhere. Or, as Lao Tzu famously said, “The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step”.* Chad Dickerson, CEO of the rapidly growing online marketplace, Etsy.com, suggests that the best positions to “get a foot in the door” are often as a member of a company’s support team. “A number of Etsy support people have learned our business really well and turned into very capable product managers,” he said. Chad also admits to having a special place in his heart for this approach because it worked for him personally. “I took the lowest-paid clerical job at a newspaper in Raleigh, North Carolina in 1993 and it happened to be the first daily newspaper on the web in the United States. I ended up learning how to build websites just by being there!” Whether it’s in the Internet industry, financial services, retail, hospitality, or any other business that touches large numbers of people, starting at the point of customer interface, whether in customer support, behind the cash register, on the sales floor, or at the concierge desk, will give you a valuable opportunity to learn what’s really going on in the market. You’ll be able to use this when you seek to work your way up the ladder internally or interview elsewhere.

4. Barter.
You may not yet have a job. But if you don’t, by definition you have something else of enormous value, which you may not be fully considering. Time. Treat your time as the precious asset it is. If you are creative and package your time with energy, enthusiasm, and initiative, you can barter your way to opportunity and break the Permission Paradox. Earlier this summer, a new college graduate networked her way into an informational interview with a real estate brokerage firm. She had a degree in history. As she was talking to the executive, who seemed overwhelmingly busy, a light bulb went off. “You seem incredibly stretched right now,” she observed and then asked the $64,000 question. “What would you do to grow your business if you had an extra day in your week?” He paused and said he’d do a market research study for the young urban rental market. She offered to do that for free and was able to communicate quickly how her analysis and writing skills developed for her thesis would give her the ability to execute the project. He took her up on her offer and paid her $10 an hour for her work. After a few weeks, she presented her findings. The real estate executive was blown away by the quality of her report, the clarity of her thinking, and the creativity with which she packaged her analysis. She was offered and has now accepted an entry-level job as a market researcher in the firm.

5. Re-imagine Your Experience.
You’ve decided the general direction you’d like to take and have built up a target list of companies to research and pursue. You’ve followed your target list rigorously by visiting the career pages for each company to see what jobs are actually available. All good. But, at this point in the process, you may find that you just don’t have the experience sought for a position you’d like to pursue. You can either exit the website then and there and move on to the next company. Or you can try to re-imagine your experience and pursue this very opening. Here’s how one aspiring young professional did just that. For an entry-level position in a food company, it listed “project management” experience as a critical requirement. Initially this put off the energetic, enthusiastic graduate who was otherwise a great fit with the company and who resonated with the mission of providing customers with only the highest-quality organic food. In discussing the dilemma, we walked through this individual’s experiences and were able to find something that fit the bill – when thought of and described in a different way. A geography major who loves travel, he told how he worked with a group of his friends to “project manage” their recent three week trip across Eastern Europe – doing research into itineraries, finding the lowest fares and cheapest hostels, executing the reservations and bookings, collecting the money from his friends, and acting as “treasurer” for the journey. In so doing, he was able to demonstrate the capabilities that the company was looking for – even though he was drawing on a completely non-professional experience. The key lesson is that you may actually have more-relevant experience than you think.

* Brainy.com





Some spots open for ProMatch career services this Weds. 6/25 and Weds. 7/2

19 06 2014

Hello Everyone,

I’ve received rave reviews from KIT List members about ProMatch, a free service from the California EDD, that has many features to help professionals with career growth.

ProMatch has some openings for its orientations this Wednesday and next, 6/25 and 7/2.

Please show up on time since it’s a first-come, first-served basis.

ProMatch is impressive and many of our KIT List members vouch for how the program focuses professionals on getting back into great jobs.

ProMatch is offered at no charge — it is part of America’s Job Center of California collaboration between the state’s EDD Experience Unlimited program and the NOVA Workforce Investment Board.

I encourage you to attend the Wednesday orientation and benefit from ProMatch’s excellent array of tools, workshops, success teams, professional career coaches and speakers to help you conduct a smarter job search.

Warmly,

Sue

*****************
ProMatch Career Resource Center

You are a professional. You realize that you need to be on the inside track to land the next job in your career.

But to tap the hidden jobs, you need support. The kind you get from a strong network.

When you join ProMatch, you get all the networking support you need at no charge:

- Professional networking opportunities to tap into the hidden job market

- Small group success teams who hold you accountable and support you in your search

- Workshops where you hone your resume, practiceyour interviewing and grow your network

- No-fee sessions with professional career coaches and guest speakers waive their high fees for you

Get started at one of these ProMatch orientations:

Wednesdays
8:15 to 11am

No reservation needed. Just show up (on time!) at:
ProMatch Career Resource Center
505 W. Olive Ave. Suite 737
Sunnyvale, CA 94086

http://www.promatch.org

Phone: (408) 730-7671





Free Presentation on 6/21: “How to Start a Business in Silicon Valley”

18 06 2014

Hello Everyone,

Here is an excellent free event this Saturday, 6/21, for those of you who may have a whole new future by starting your own business!

Menlo Park Presbyterian Church (MPPC) has a terrific career and jobs program though their Career Action Center and services. They have events every first and third Saturday in Mountain View, CA.

They’ve got a great topic this Saturday, 6/21.

Check out their site for their services (many of my own friends have sung its praises) and the info for this Saturday’s free event is below.

It’s SO worth it to get out and meet smart people and learn effective strategies for taking charge of your career.

Go for it!

Sue

http://mppc.org/calendar/career-actions-ministry

Saturday, June 21
9:30 to 11:30 a.m.,
Menlo Park Presbyterian Church (MPPC)
Mountain View (CA) Campus, Fellowship Hall

Guest Speaker: Jenny Huang and Peter Sanchez of the Silicon Valley Small Business Development Center

Presentation Topic: “How to start a business in Silicon Valley”

About the presentation:
Assess your entrepreneurial profile, understand the legal requirements, permits and licenses needed to start your business, get started on your business plan, and learn about the wealth of resources available to help your small business get started, grow, and thrive.

About the Speakers: Jenny Huang has over 20 years of experience as a marketing consultant, a brand marketer and communicator in the hardware, software and telecommunications industries. She brings a rich background in branding and marketing, and a passion in assisting any growing start up or progressive company in building a strong brand identity and marketing foundation essential for leadership and differentiation in a competitive, global market environment. Her thorough and laser-focused approach to problem solving helps companies prioritize critical elements to launch a successful business and drive growth through consistent innovation and execution. She is the Founder and CEO of a boutique strategic marketing consulting practice based in Mountain View. She also serves as a business advisor assisting clients who seek help in start-up assistance, marketing strategy and message development, business planning, market research and access to capital.

Peter Sanchez has a wealth of experience in residential real estate, technology, education and banking. He is retired Manufacturing Engineer from Inter Corp and is the Co-Founder of a housing development non-profit. He has co-founded various businesses including Pacific Bay Capital Group, College Now, Friends of MESA and Silicon Valley Venture Partners. He is very active in the community and promotes entrepreneurship within his professional space of influence. His has a Bachelor’s of Science in Industrial Tech. Electronics from San Jose State University.

About the Silicon Valley Small Business Development Center:

The Silicon Valley Small Business Development Center (SV-SBDC) is dedicated to the success of entrepreneurs in the Greater Silicon Valley Area, which includes Santa Clara and South San Mateo Counties.

They offer a wide variety of services for present and potential small business owners,including no-charge expert counseling, low-cost training, information resources, events and seminars.

SBDC business advisors can assist you and your business in becoming lendable and may introduce you to appropriate funding sources. They can crystallize your thoughts on growth strategies, guide you through tough human resource decisions, and map out strategies to increase your sales and profits. All counseling services are confidential and free of charge.

Contact SV-SBDC at http://svsbdc.org/ or 408-351-3610.

Directions to 1667 Miramonte Ave. in Mountain View, CA

Contact: Marcia Davis-Cannon

http://mppc.org/calendar/career-actions-ministry





The Questions Managers Want You to Ask During a Job Interview

13 06 2014

Hi Everyone,

I just saw this on Mashable with some good pointers for job seekers.

Here’s the link, and I’ve also included the whole article below:

http://mashable.com/2014/06/09/job-interview-questions/?utm_cid=mash-com-fb-main-link

Wishing you successful interviewing!

Sue

The Questions Managers Want You to Ask During a Job Interview

By Ritika Trikha

 

It’s a query that can give an ill-prepared job seeker pause: So, do you have any questions for me?

Interviewers will judge you by your questions. Almost all employers wrap up job interviews by turning the tables and offering candidates an opportunity to showcase how well they understand the role, how interested they are in the opportunity and what plays to their passions points.

When the time comes to flip roles and grill your interviewer about the potential job, it can be tempting to ask pressing questions about salaries, hours and workload. But asking questions about vacation time, salary reviews and benefits might be red flags — and worst-case scenario, they might cost you the job.

When asking your interviewer questions regarding compensation or scheduling, there’s an imminent risk of being perceived as self-serving. Questions that are more focused on achieving results, helping the company grow and showing how well you’ve researched the role are the most wow-inducing. The goal is to end with a bang and leave a solid impression.

We asked managers what they actually want to hear candidates ask during an interview. Below are a few of their responses.

1. “How has [the company you're interviewing for]‘s product impacted you directly?”

“This question shows that the candidate wants to work in a place where people are passionate about what they do. They don’t want to come to work just to get a paycheck. They want to know how employees interact with the product and how it has personally impacted their lives.”

— Ragini Parmar, hiring manager at Credit Karma.

2. “How would my role affect the business in the short-, medium- and long-term?”

“First, this question demonstrates that the candidate isn’t just thinking about themselves, but rather where they fit into the strategy of the business as a whole. It switches the conversation from being about what the company can do for them to what they can do for the company.”

–- Erin Patterson, talent acquisition at Moxie.

3. “Why did you join [your company]?” In other words, a very polite version of “Why should I want to work here?”

“Top candidates are generally interested in what the interviewer found so attractive about the company they now work with. When a candidate wants to know why I dropped everything to join Spoon, they’re really getting a read on whether or not the opportunity is truly compelling.

This question specifically tells me that a candidate is thinking about the long-term future and isn’t interested in just another job — a good indicator that they take their work seriously and will only move for the right opportunity. They likely want to know about the company’s product story, current revenue, short- and long-term plans, culture and team in place.

If hiring managers aren’t prepared with honest and persuasive reasons why they joined their current firm, top candidates can quickly lose interest and move on.”

— Colin McIntosh business development at Spoon.net, a web-based computing platform.

4. “What gets you out of bed every day and excites you to come to work?”

“I love this question for two reasons. One, it’s a little bold. It’s personal in nature, and I’m not interested in hiring someone with whom I can’t connect on a personal level. But it also is a great way for a candidate to get a sense of what it’s like to work with us — what the office environment is like, what we’re passionate about, what our values are. Plus, implicit in the question is that they’re ready and willing to also get out of bed excited and ready to work.”

— Joshua Dziabiak, cofounder and COO of The Zebra, a digital auto insurance agency.

5. “What are the biggest trouble-spots you’re hoping the person in this position can help you with?”

“So much of job interviewing is focused on what’s great about the job, great about the candidate, etc. It’s refreshing to be asked what pain-points the person we hire will have to be able to handle. But remember, if you ask this question, be prepared to offer a few potential solutions or ideas for the issues raised by your interviewer. It’s a really interesting question, but job seekers need to be ready to think on their feet once they ask it!”

— Sara Sutton Fell, CEO and founder of FlexJobs, a telecommuting and flexible job site.

6. “What are your organization’s strengths and weaknesses compared to your competition?”

“Candidates are usually evaluating multiple firms and making their own comparisons to figure out which one is the best fit for them. This is a savvy question because the candidate is asking for an assessment and perspective on what makes Deloitte strong, while also trying to see how objective we can be about our own organization.”

— Patty Pogemiller, talent acquisition and mobility leader at Deloitte LLP.





Free training for PMP (Project Management Professional) certification in San Franciso

29 04 2014

Hi Everyone,

Someone from the KIT List was kind enough to send this information to me about an opportunity for job seekers to get the much-valued PMP certification…free of charge.

NOTE: If you know of other free or close-to-free job search or career develoment resources, please let me know and I’ll post it on the KIT Resources email list. If you’re not already subscribed to it, you can join by sending an email to KITlistResource-subscribe@yahoogroups.com.

Please go to the links below to find out more about the PMP program — you do need to qualify for the funding, but the site will help you through the process.

One of the smart things to do when you’re out of work is to increase your value by building new skills. A PMP certification has long been recognized as an important accreditation.

Also, there are other great training programs through TechSF (http://www.bavc.org/techsf), so be sure to go to their site to find out more about their other services to job seekers!

Warmly,

Sue

****************
Register for TechSF & get funded to train in Project Management!

Project Management Bootcamp

https://bavc.org/project-management-bootcamp-may-12th-july-31

This intensive evening training beginning May 12th and finishing July 31st will target preparing students for the industry standard certification exam (PMP), as well as cover the following topics: project management theory of initiating, planning, executing, monitoring, and closing projects; using Microsoft Project software; career assessments, workshops, and counseling.

Prerequisites: a secondary or four-year degree; demonstrable project management experience

Find more information at bavc.org/tech-sf

Register for TechSF to get started!

Questions?
Contact natalie@bavc.org





5 Ways to Follow Up Without Being Annoying

15 04 2014

Hello Everyone,

This recent article in “The Daily Muse” has some smart points on how to strike that right balance between dropping the ball on following up — and being a stalker!

Don’t be disheartened if you don’t hear back the first time since recruiters and employers are also overwhelmed with email and other communications on top of their regular workload. DO follow up, DO be clever about it. It’s worth it!

Happy reading,

Sue

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Link to the article:

http://mashable.com/2014/04/05/effective-follow-up/?utm_cid=mash-com-fb-main-link

5 Ways to Follow Up Without Being Annoying

By ELLIOTT BELL for The Daily Muse
Apr 05, 2014

I had a conversation with a friend the other day about his job search that went something like this:

Friend: I wrote to him last week and still haven’t heard back. It’s so frustrating.
Me: Why not follow up and check in?
Friend: I don’t want to be annoying.

The fear is understandable. No one wants to be annoying or bothersome to a professional contact, especially when you want a job, meeting, sales dollars, or something else very important from that person.

But here’s the rub. The average person can get a few hundred emails a day. That makes it pretty tough to respond to all of them, and things naturally fall to the bottom of the list. If you don’t get a response, it doesn’t mean that someone’s ignoring you — it just may mean that he or she is too busy.

So, to the question: Should you follow up? Absolutely. In fact, it’s your job. And how often should you do so? One philosophy is: As many times as it takes. The important thing is to do it the right way. Or, as some may call it, to be “pleasantly persistent.”

Here are a few tips on how to (nicely) follow up with that hiring manager, sales lead, or VIP—and get the answer you’re looking for.

Rule 1: Be Overly Polite and Humble

That seems obvious enough, but a lot of people take it personally when they don’t hear back from someone right away. Resist the urge to get upset or mad, and never take your feelings out in an email, saying something like, “You haven’t responded yet,” or “You ignored my first email.” Just maintain an extremely polite tone throughout the entire email thread. Showing that you’re friendly and that you understand how busy your contact is is a good way to keep him or her interested (and not mad).

Rule 2: Persistent Doesn’t Mean Every Day

Sending a follow-up email every day doesn’t show you have gumption or passion, it shows you don’t respect a person’s time. The general rule of thumbis to give at least a week before following up. Any sooner, and it might come off as pushy; let too much time pass, and you risk the other person not having any clue who you are. I typically start off with an email every week, and then switch to every couple of weeks.

Rule 3: Directly Ask if You Should Stop Reaching Out

If you’ve followed up a few times and still haven’t heard back, it’s worth directly asking if you should stop following up. After all, you don’t want to waste your time, either. I’ll sometimes say, “I know how busy you are and completely understand if you just haven’t had the time to reach back out. But I don’t want to bombard you with emails if you’re not interested. Just let me know if you’d prefer I stop following up.” Most people respect honesty and don’t want to waste someone’s time, and they’ll at least let you know one way or another.

Rule 4: Stand Out in a Good Way

I once had someone trying to sell me something that I was remotely interested in but that was nowhere near the top of my priority list. Every week, he’d send me a new email quickly re-explaining what he sold—as well as a suggestion for good pizza to try around the city. Why? He had seen a blog post where I mentioned I’d eat pizza 24/7 if I could, and cleverly worked that into his follow-up. It made him stand out in a good way, and as a result, we eventually had a call.

The lesson: If done well, a little creativity in your follow up can go a long way. If you’re following up about a job, tryAlexandra Franzen’s tips for giving the hiring manager something he or she can’t resist.

Rule 5: Change it Up

If you’re not connecting with someone, try changing it up. In other words, don’t send the exact same email at the same time of day on the same day of week. Getting people to respond can sometimes just come down to catching them at the right time. If you always follow up in the morning, maybe try later in the day a few times.

Remember: If someone does ask you to stop following up, stop following up. But until you hear that, it’s your responsibility to keep trying.





Kick Off the Year Right! Create Your Life Planning List

8 01 2014

Hello Everyone,

I’m sharing this post with a smart tool for getting your goals set — which is a great way to start this new year! Jennifer LeBlanc is a friend and talented coach, and she’s given me permission to share this post and her “Life Zones” tool with our KIT List community.

Here’s Jenn’s blog post:

I am a list addict. I write lists for everything:

• Yearly planning lists
• Weekly priorities
• My team’s priorities/client needs this week
• Groceries and meal plans
• How to launch a company successfully
• Weekend tasks
• People I want to connect with professionally
• And so on … .

So it is no surprise that part of my retreat process includes a list. Every retreat I go on, I review my “Life Zones” list to make sure that I am not missing anything.

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Here is a very simple exercise you can do any time you feel the need for a life check in, such as:

• The new year is a natural time for this work.

• The beginning of spring always seems like a good time to do some internal housecleaning as well.

• On your birthday, another natural time of reflection.

• In September, the beginning of the new school year (whether you are in school or not, it’s a time of new beginnings).

• The beginning of each new quarter is fitting.

• Any time there is a major change or shift in your life.

For each of the life zones, write down your answers to three simple questions:
1. Where am I now?
2. Where do I want to be?
3. By when?

Life Zones:
• Family/Home Life
• Finances
• Career/Business
• Personal Character
• Relationships
• Leisure Time
• Self Care
• Learning
• Legal

Take 30 minutes to write out your answers to each of these simple questions for each life zone and you will quickly have your 2014 plan created…if not a full life plan!

About the Author:

Jenn LeBlanc is the CEO and Founder of ThinkResults Marketing and also runs ThinkResults Coaching for high-performance executives and entrepreneurs. Jenn offers a complementary 30-minute Coaching Call, or you can participate in her 2014 Breakthroughs Retreat at Costanoa Lodge on the California coast later this month. http://thinkresultscoaching.com/








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