Tag Archives: LinkedIn

I have all the qualifications, so why am I not being hired?

 AP-Photo-Chris-Pizzello


AP-Photo-Chris-Pizzello

For you, the only thing you want is to get a job. For the hiring manager, making the hire is a priority competing with many others at the same time. So what is going on in the hiring manager’s mind? Most hiring managers take no pleasure in the hiring process. It’s just one more thing they have to take care of, and they often feel insecure in making that final decision, since some of their previous hires proved disappointing.

A hiring manager also knows that making a hiring mistake could potentially ruin his reputation and credibility. While reviewing resumes he is asking himself three questions: Why should he interview you? What can you do for him? And if hired, would you be effective in filling the job duties?

Now, provided that you get invited for an interview, the hiring manager has three more qualifying questions to answer before deciding to hire you: (1) Are you particularly good at what he needs done? He is not hiring just average people. This is your opportunity to recite your accomplishments eloquently and succinctly. Do not repeat what you said in the past. Highlight only your accomplishments and the results. (2) Do you fit into his organization? This is the primary area in which you have to be convincing. You may have all the qualifications, but if the hiring manager cannot see you as part of his organization, then nothing will help you. (3) Are you committed? The hiring manager sees in you an investment—hopefully, a long-term investment. And he wants to make sure it’s a good one. He also wants to make sure you are promotable and have the potential to grow within the organization.

As you can see, the hiring process is complex for both the hiring manager and the candidate. Both sides will share in the potential rewards as well as the associated risks. The question for the candidate remains: how to increase chances of getting hired by outshining the competition? The theoretical answer is to network to the max, because statistics have proved that 60 to 80% of people found their jobs via networking. The practical answer is to mock-practice your interviewing skills. You can do that with friends or your spouse or—best of all—with a qualified career coach. The reason that interviewing skills are vital to acquire is simply that hiring managers make their decisions based on how well you interview and not on your job skills.

 

Endear Yourself to the Buyer

good news by phoneNobody likes to be a nobody, but unfortunately, that’s what you are at the beginning of the job search process, provided you’ve just joined the ranks of those in transition. Those who are the decision makers about your future do not initially know anything about you, so you have the chance to impress them, and you want to make darn sure it’s a very good impression.

So, how are you going to positively influence hiring managers, human resources folks, and recruiters? To start with, record brief greetings on both your answering machine at home and your mobile phone, and project a clear, mature, businesslike, and overall positive message. Your children are cute, I’m sure, but leave their greetings for sharing with family and friends and not potential employers. Next, get into the habit of answering your phone professionally. Answering with “Hello, this is John Doe,” with a friendly and inviting tone of voice, is best. Get into that habit even if you think you can identify the person via caller ID. Don’t make exceptions to the rule, because you’ll be sorry if you didn’t answer properly when it’s someone you really want to impress. You also want to make sure your e-mail address is nothing less than professional. An address like bigmama@yahoo.com or anything cute or sexy could be detrimental to that first impression.

Your next opportunity to create the right image is via your résumé. This is probably the single most important document you’ll be evaluated by, and it will determine whether the hiring folks want to invite you to an interview or not. Remember that the first impression is a lasting impression. This is an extremely critical stage because résumé readers typically review large numbers of résumés, and having only one opening to fill, their intention at this point is to reduce the number of résumés to three to five final candidates for interviewing. In fact, this process of reviewing the résumé is divided into two parts. The resume reader’s objective is to eliminate résumés that clearly seem to lack something. It might be something as simple as an unattractive appearance, improper use of language or grammar, lengthiness, overly detailed experience, or a lack of accomplishments.

On one hand, many résumés contain listings of job duties as described in job descriptions and not actual accomplishments. The résumé reviewer expects to read about accomplishments on the job. If your résumé doesn’t pass this 10- to 30-second scan, it’s likely that it will be set aside and never resurface again. Unfortunately, you’ll never find out that that was the case—except by the lack of any next steps.

On the other hand, if your résumé passes this first-blush review, it will be read thoroughly, along with another 10 or 12 others, and will be ranked on a competitive basis. Probably only three to five candidates will be called in for face-to-face interviews. With that decision, you move on to the next stage in the job search process, in which you have to get ready for the final test, which is to convince the hiring manager and others interviewing you that you are their ideal candidate. Good luck.

 

LinkedIn Profile Is More Important Than Résumé

10imagesDo I shock you with this declaration? Think again. Your résumé is typically being sent to individuals, to recruiters, or as a job application, which has limited exposure. Yet your LinkedIn profile is open to literally the entire world around the clock. Moreover, as I understand it, LinkedIn is now considered the choice tool by recruiters and human resources professionals because it is so user-friendly and searchable.

If you think like I do, then you may want to revisit your LinkedIn profile and make a few easy improvements. For example, upload a professionally produced photo to enhance your image. Make sure the tagline contains a good description of what you do. The Twitter feature should be used frequently and appropriately. The summary section should be your marketing piece. Your current and past positions should be clear. Don’t say too much; rather, make them intriguing. Include a few but strong accomplishments in your bulleted items. Keywords pertinent to your profession should be listed as well. Listing your specialties offers additional, specific information that enhances your chances to distinguish yourself.

LinkedIn lets you upload various applications. Take advantage of that. Recruiters like to see that you have several recommendations. After all, they have to sell you to their clients. Recommendations serve as strong support for your candidacy because they come from others. Everything else you say in your LinkedIn profile comes from you, and in this case you’re a salesperson selling a product, which is yourself. If you have a Web site or blog posts, list them. Belonging to several professional groups also enhances your image. Similarly, if you’ve received honors and awards, they should be listed. You also should include some interests because you’ll be selected not only for your qualifications but also for your fit factor.

And finally, review your personal settings. There may be great qualifications listed on your LinkedIn profile, but if you limit those you allow to view the profile, who do you think is losing out?