Friday, December 23, 2011

New Year's Resolutions? Seriously? Not here!

This blog post has obviously taken a long time to complete. Maybe it's a post that has been organized so meticulously, deeply thought out and planned, well crafted and edited so thoroughly, that the finished product took such a massive effort to....nahhh. I wish.

Well, I guess I need to delete all of the clever tie-ins with the June trip to Israel for my niece's wedding, July 4th, Labor Day, my six week part time job at the PR agency, the Chicago Marathon(people ran it the day after Yom Kippur? wow..), Halloween, Thanksgiving, etc. Here we are, the end of 2011 glaring at us! All together now...Thank god!

Moving on...of course there has been so much happening since my last post - tons of articles to share; so many new wonderful people I've met; seminars attended; small successes; frustrating failures; fighting 'funks' generated by the longest job search known to man. What about you? Share with us what's gone on - the great, the horrible, your biggest successes or achievements this year. Or even your unexpected frustrations.

During that obnoxiously early twelve hour El Al Airlines flight to Tel Aviv, while speaking with other passengers, friendly flight attendants, after giving each my shortelevator speech, (which gets longer and longer each week), that dreaded question thrown at me: "Larry, describe your perfect job" One of my least favorite questions, (perhaps second most to "what is your New Year's resolution?") . How do you feel when asked that question? Has your answer changed during many months of the job search? In what way? Please share it with us all here.

Let's get to it: Linked In - everyone is on it, right? And you're using it exhaustively in your job search...right? It's crucial, used more by headhunters than...anything. This article should help you sharpen your Linked In usage. Please share your thoughts, additions, disagreements, etc. And of course, please feel free to connect with me there: I'm always more than happy to help bring people together there.

Once again, let's discuss the elevator speech. For me, with each job search, it's gotten tougher to keep my elevator speech sharp, interesting, and focused. Have a look at this piece on the informal elevator speech for some new ideas. Did you find it helpful? Let us know. Do you have other ideas? Share them please.

The cover letter. Are they still necessary? Do you write one? Do they read it? How to make a killer cover letter? This article had some good ideas. What do you think?

That brings us to the title of this post. I'm all about having goals, and self-improvement, but not making them on New Year's eve.Read why 88% of all New Year's resolutions fail. Years ago I was quoted about my facetious New Year's eve resolution I often make. It almost appeared in a columnist's piece in the Chicago Tribune, but was cut due to editing. (email me, and I'll share it with you).

I hope you get some use out of some of the articles here, and really hope you engage, agree, disagree, battle, praise, share your thoughts. I look forward to hearing from you, and hope you forward, share, and enjoy the blog.
Oh, and why the black eyed peas photo? Click here, if you don't know (go to the 4th section).
I wish all of you and your families, a happy, healthy, loving, prosperous, and safe 2012!

thanks for reading,

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Apparently, STOP means...Stop!

It's true, working on this post began in Traffic School, late last night. I know that each and every nugget we were taught was so timely, important, and demanded my full attention. But I still remember most of what I learned as a sixteen year old (100 years ago) concerning the Rules of the Road. If I didn't start writing this, I'd have fallen into a deep sleep in class. You laugh? Ok, how many feet before an intersection in an urban area must you signal a turn? Hmm? Yes - I did remember! Do you?

"You're overqualified for this position". I'm guessing many of you may have heard this too. How do you handle that challenge? Please share it with us. I have an answer, which must be said a certain way, so as not to be misconstrued. But first, what ideas can you share with us? I've been warned that I'll be thrown this roadblock for an upcoming interview next week...and I'm ready for it. How would you dismiss this concern? For one point of view, click HERE.

And from the Ladders, read this article for another thought on how to handle this challenge.

What about your new, never before tried tactics, tools, techniques that you've begun utilizing in your job search. Tell us some of these new ideas that you never used before, perhaps not even a few months ago? I'm constantly preaching network, network, network. What else are you doing? Me: I've begun another tactic to pile on top of all the networking I've done and will continue to do. How about you? What have others used? This article HERE offers some ideas to consider.

If you've read this blog before today, you know that I'm all about networking: I preach it, trust it, believe it. And, it has and continues to bring me amazing results. But it's so important to
remember that it's not a one way street. This was forwarded to me and I think it's a great reminder of perhaps a new way of thinking for some people. Tell us what you think of this article.
Are you using social media more than in the past? Twitter, Linkedin, e-newsletters, blogs? How have you been using them? Who do you follow?

What blogs have you found that have helped you in your job search? Of course I hope this is one of them, but we are all curious what other sources have provided you with great ideas, tips and encouragement?
Events coming up to consider attending:
A retreat with two inspirational workshops this weekend, led by Dr. Nicola Amadora at Flourish Studios on Lincoln Ave. in Chicago:
May 21, Saturday, "Leading Like a Woman"
May 22, Sunday, for men and women: "To Love & Be Loved"

For more information, please contact: Diana Fleischmann, 608-780-2244 or

For B2B Marketing professionals:
Business Marketing Association Chicago hosts their tenth anniversary Windy City Biz Bash on Tuesday, June 2, 5:30-8:30 pm at River East Art Center.
Click HERE to see some of the amazing silent and live auction items available.

And for all marketing folks, coming up next week:
On May 25, Chicago Booth Marketing Roundtable, featuring Craig Wortmann, Clinical Associate Professor of Entrepreneurship, Chicago Booth School of Business. It's free, and as always you don't need to be a University of Chicago alum. Register HERE.

Hoping there was a nugget that you found useful in this post. And I'm looking forward to your thoughts, comments, disagreements,
thanks for reading,

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Three Weeks Down..How Many More To Go?

Why the Royal wedding shot? Well....why not? On to other matters.

I’ve heard the voices of some readers, which sound something along the lines of “Larry, are you EVER going to write another blog post?!” Being a positive person, I take it as such a nice compliment! They miss my writing as well as my thoughts, information, and ideas that I share here. Certainly they’re not complaining. Well, new business cards for this last search have been ordered. Included on these cards will be my Twitter account
as well as this blog site. The pressure to post more regularly is on! I plan on being here often, and hope you will be too!

My three month marketing contract with Walgreens ended earlier this month. What a great group of people I got to work with in their infusion and respiratory care marketing area! More people need to know that Walgreens has over 100 facilities across the nation staffed with expert nurses for these patients. First on my long, never-ending, to do list: getting myself right back into that great company.

As always, we all want to know how others are doing. How have your job searches changed this year? Have the number of bites you get increased? Are you getting more interviews? More calls from headhunters?
I'm very interested in knowing
how it's going for you and your friends.
Since that contract ended, these first three weeks of my last search have been much more active for me than any three weeks in the last two years! Timing? Luck? Networking? Not sure.
Have you considered changing your job searching strategy? Are you thinking of changing industries, careers, going back for school or training? Share it here, we’re really interested in how your approach has changed.

I’ve always thought that during the job search, I go wherever I need to go to meet the right people, to network, to interview. Whether it’s by car, train, or bus. To me, transportation is a necessary evil that one can’t worry about during the search. And then…the price at the pump hit $4.00!! What!?? How high do you think It’ll go? As always, the economists are predicting everything you can think of. Have your driving habits changed? Will they? Are you budgeting
differently now?

Tell us what you do to relieve the insane stress of the search. Walking? Yoga? Swimming? Tennis? Cooking, gardening, eating, drinking? We all have something to learn from how others effectively deal with the madness. For me…it's many things including: spending lots of time with my daughter; running; reading; movies; seeing friends; and always always…plenty of chocolate!

You’ve reached the end of this brief post. The wait for the next one will be short. In the meantime, if you haven't already, please go back and comment on some of the questions posed. I promise you that we all can benefit and are interested in what you share.

Thanks for reading!

Friday, February 11, 2011

December is the Worst Time to Look For a Job..Oh, Really?

How was your December? Were you glad when 2010 ended? Do you remember December? What excites you about 2011? Do join in the discussion, and let us know! I've mentioned before that so many people rationalize, throughout the year, how some specific month is the worst month to look for a job. You can also say how that SAME month can be the best month to look. Take December. A terrible month, the worst month to job hunt, right? Everything seems to be on hold, hiring managers waiting for the new year; so many Christmas parties taking up so much free time; people focused on upcoming vacations, etc.

But, in December, this contrarian believes, many people’s pace at work slows considerably. They actually may have time to not only return your email or phone call, they may actually ANSWER the phone! Even if their workday is still crazy, they do attend these Christmas parties, and more parties = more opportunities to network! Stay tuned for next December, when I'll post links to articles about taking advantage of these increased opportunities to make great connections.

What’s gone on with you all since my last blog post? Comment, and tell us, please. For me, the first two weeks of December were the best weeks for me in almost two years of this current job search. Two opportunities came in by that old reliable method: timing, networking, and luck!

Currently I'm working on a three month marketing project manager role with Walgreens. So, the latest score: 2 part time jobs done, now have one 3 month freelance job and 1 part time position. It was quite an unpredictable end to my year. Tell us about yours! I’m hearing from many in my network who have recently landed, and hope to hear your successes here too.

For you newer grads or for friends of yours who may be new to this job hunting adventure, there's a nice piece from the "New Grad Life" blog about Linked In, and mistakes to avoid.

Can't put in a posting without wondering if there are any great networking opportunities are around the corner? Please, comment, tell us. Here's what I can recommend:

For you marketing folk, and anyone who is interested specifically in millenial marketing and the college and university marketplace, be sure to attend the Feb. 23 University of Chicago Marketing Roundtable. Click here to register for this event and to be included on their listserv to learn about future roundtables. You don't need to be an alum or connected to U. of C. in any way and they are FREE! They even offer discount parking. They take place downtown at the Gleacher Center.

What do you all know about Meetups? They are free to join, and they are an excellent way to network, socialize, get involved, meet others who share your interests, no matter what that interest is! Click their homepage and explore. You enter your interests - you won’t believe how specific these groups can be, for networking, work-related, family, sports, anything - and they’ll notify you of groups that exist in your area. You can join the group, explore that group’s page, see all the other members’ bios, learn about past and upcoming events, and decide whether or not you’d be interested.

Finally, a couple interesting articles I found in Yahoo worth checking out.

"The And Factor"
"Job Search Using Online Niche Job Boards"
and finally:
"I want to Be a Bumble Bee: Think about the Animal Job Interview Question"

A lot to digest, I know. Please folks, comment, respond, argue, agree, let us hear your voices! Forward, share, post. And remember: believe it or not, winter is over in just two days!! That's right...pitchers and catchers report to Spring Training!