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Favorite Friday: Your LinkedIn Network is Useless if…

April 18th, 2014

Another Favorite Friday from my LinkedIn blog.  This one is about the utility of your LinkedIn contacts.  Too often I’ve heard people say “LinkedIn doesn’t work for me.”

That’s like saying “the hammer in my shed doesn’t work for me.”  They don’t tell you that they bought it, put it in the shed, and never used it.

You have to do something with it.  The main line in this post is:

Your [My] LinkedIn network is USELESS if I… DON’T DO ANYTHING WITH IT!

Whether it is LinkedIn, JibberJobber, your business card… the question is: what are YOU doing with it?

what where
job title, keywords or company
city, state or zip jobs by job search

JibberJobber is a powerful tool that lets you manage your career, from job search to relationship management to target company management (and much more). Free for life with an optional upgrade.

Sign Up Now! »

101 Best Sites To Use In Your Job Search

April 17th, 2014

I saw another one… an article listing 99 sites that everyone should (1) know about and (2) use.

So here’s my list of 100 Best Sites to Use in Your Job Search:

1.  Linke………….

Wait!  

NO!  

I don’t like lists like this.

Thinking practically, who in the world has time to (1) know about all of these sites, especially since they seem to come and go with whimsical weather (I’ve had more than a couple JibberJobber competitors fold up and drift away into oblivion).

Yes, of course job seekers have time, right?  They have nothing else to do but to check out new sites that might be gone in three months.

NO.  Job seekers don’t have time.  They are not technical analysts for VC firms, trying to decide what is going to be the next LinkedIn or Facebook.  Or figuring out what “popular” sites will be the next MySpace.  They need to know the handful of high-impact, must-use sites to get them from Point A (no paycheck) to Point B (paycheck).

Don’t waste time on the lists, that take entirely too much time to read, feeling bad about not being up to speed on the “you must know about and use” sites.  Instead, figure out what your gaps are, and address those gaps.

Here are three, count’em, THREE sites I’ll recommend to every job seeker.  Beyond that, YOU have to figure out what your gaps are and where else you should be.

One: JibberJobber

Yes, I put JibberJobber as number 1.  Partially because this is my website, my blog post, and I can order these however I want.  But more than that, the ability to keep you organized in a job search, help you with your follow-up, and be a hub for the information you are collecting from online and offline sources.

In my recent phone calls with users I’m amazed and humbled to hear how people use and depend on JibberJobber, not just in a job search but to manage their personal and professional relationships.  Indispensable.  ”Logged in all the time.”  People are using it the way I envisioned they would use it, and have come to depend on it to help keep them organized… it’s very cool to hear from people around the world that for them, JibberJobber is more important than LinkedIn, or other sites.

Two: LinkedIn

LinkedIn has changed a lot since I wrote the first edition of the LinkedIn book.  They have decreased the value by removing features, or moving them to the paid side. Recruiters tell me they aren’t using LinkedIn much, or as much (they are going to where their target audience is engaged, which isn’t necessarily LinkedIn).  They seem to be saturated in the U.S. and, while expanding globally is fine for them, the change in the userbase means that the value to a U.S. user has lessened.

Having said all that, they are the 8,000 pound guerrilla in the professional networking space.  You should turn to LinkedIn (or, if you are in a country that has a more powerful professional network, like Xing in Germany, then use that one) for research.  Learn about your target companies, your prospects, come up with a prospect list, figure out the structure of, and players in, a company, etc.

I regularly go to LinkedIn to figure who the heck people are, and why we should get on a call or have a conversation.  I can’t think of any system or site that is as helpful as LinkedIn is to help me understand that, and make a decision on how much time to pursue on a person or company.

Don’t use LinkedIn to read all of the influencer stuff, blog posts, or immerse yourself in Groups in the name of learning and education.

Do use LinkedIn to help you focus on networking and targeting prospects, and being more prepared for conversations.

And then, of course, go to JibberJobber and enter relevant information about your companies and contacts :)

Three: _____________

I’m really kind of stuck on this one.  Do I tell you to use Indeed?  When I’m on the road, at job clubs, they all talk about Indeed and LinkedIn.  My hesitation is that too many people use Indeed the wrong way.  They use it to find and apply to jobs.  WRONG!  WASTE OF TIME!  DON’T FALL INTO THIS TRAP!

Okay, applying to jobs isn’t totally wrong or bad, but if you do it a lot, because it’s easier to do that then to call someone, email someone, go to a network meeting, etc., then you are chickening out of your job search and probably wasting time.

Use Indeed as a research tool.  Find out what’s going on in an industry or company by the postings on Indeed.  Or, if you are preparing for an interview for a Product Manager, go to Indeed and open up ten Product Manager openings. Then, study those job descriptions and make sure you understand the lingo, keywords, phrases, expectations, qualifications, tasks and duties, etc.  What a great way to prepare for your interview!  Marry what you learn with your interview preparation (which you can wordsmith and store in JibberJobber), so you have stories that exemplify the phrases from those job descriptions, etc.

Or instead of indeed, should I tell you to use Google?  The starting point for the internet… Google, Bing, Yahoo, etc…. to find information and do research.  You can find too much information, which becomes a pain to sift through, but if you can get over your fear of picking up the phone, a search engine + your tenacity can be invaluable.

I’m not sure what #3 really is.

There comes a point in your job search where you have to accept that your problems aren’t going to be solved by widgets or websites, and that you simply have to send *that* email, or make *that* phone call.

Don’t hunt for silver bullets.  Work on relationships, and your messages, and how you request help.  You need to add a bit of old fashioned elbow grease to this job, and not hope you stumble into your next dream job just because you are on the 99 right tools.

What am I missing?

what where
job title, keywords or company
city, state or zip jobs by job search

JibberJobber is a powerful tool that lets you manage your career, from job search to relationship management to target company management (and much more). Free for life with an optional upgrade.

Sign Up Now! »

“The Salesforce for Job Seekers”

April 16th, 2014

I was on a call with a savvy user in Austin, TX who recently found JibberJobber.  He has been a Salesforce.com user and said that JibberJobber is the “Salesforce for job seekers.”

Aside from the fact that JibberJobber has features/functions that are geared towards your professional career management (like the Interview Prep and the Job Journal), there is something else that is really important.  Critically important.

If you have a Salesforce.com account, or a highrise account, or any other CRM account, provided to you by your employer, guess what happens to the account and data (aka, your contacts) when you terminate employment?

That’s right… it’s gone. It’s not yours, it is theirs.

The contacts and relationships are still yours, of course.  That one human being can say hi to another human being is not something they can take away (except for, you know, non-competes, etc.).  But the data – phone numbers, emails, etc. is GONE. Inaccessible.

Your JibberJobber account is YOURS, for life.  You know you can optionally upgrade and downgrade, and you never lose your records.  It is yours through company and job changes.  It is yours when you are unemployed, employed, and even retired.  It is not the property of a company, that can take it away like they can take your paycheck away.

JibberJobber is your empowerment tool.  It is your long-term career manager.  Salesforce is a cool tool that you get when you have a job, provided by your company, and it’s temporary to you.  When you leave, it is gone.

JibberJobber is not gone.  It is there for you for the rest of your career.

That’s pretty cool empowerment!

what where
job title, keywords or company
city, state or zip jobs by job search

JibberJobber is a powerful tool that lets you manage your career, from job search to relationship management to target company management (and much more). Free for life with an optional upgrade.

Sign Up Now! »

Mark Hoven, Executive Leader in Melbourne, Australia, on JibberJobber and Empowerment

April 14th, 2014

Mark Hoven is a sharp senior level executive based in Australia.  Here’s part of an email he recently sent me:

mark_hoven_small“JibberJobber has been a very helpful organisational tool for me over the past 3 years I have been using it. Your tool is a great reference, forces a discipline to my search and documentation efforts, and provides a small sense of control over proceedings which can make a big difference in those ‘dark’ moments when you wonder if anyone values your professional skills any longer.”

I love how he says JibberJobber “forces a discipline” to his job search and documentation efforts. Many professionals who start a job search are frustrated by the lack of systems and accountability in their job search, wonder if they are doing the right things, and get lost in all of the freedom and choices they have to make.  JibberJobber helps alleviate this a bit with structure and tools to accommodate the job search system that works for you.  (this means that some people are extremely structured, some have aggressive metrics, others have less time and less data to manage – JibberJobber accommodates any job search system)

I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE how he talks about the dark moments, which I’ve blogged about repeatedly, and especially this statement: JibberJobber “provides a small sense of control over…”

As a job seeker we feel like we have little-to-no control.  Many times we feel like we are spinning out of control.  Do this (network) but don’t do that (apply online).  Oh wait, someone just applied online and they got the job that we are more qualified for… ?  I don’t get it!  I’m confused!

Going from a JOB where you are in control of so many things (you might not realize this until you don’t have a job anymore), to unemployed and looking where you are at the mercy of so many things (people’s vacation schedules, the economy, weather, your ability to pay for help/services, etc.), you feel out of control.

When I started JibberJobber, eight years ago, I knew I wanted to EMPOWER job seekers and professionals.  I wanted to make this bigger than just a spreadsheet-like tool.  I wanted to make the features much richer than what you would get in your homemade spreadsheet.  I wanted to give you stuff you didn’t even think about, but stuff that first class citizens (that is, people who have jobs) would expect.

I want to take away your sense of being out of control and replace it with a sense of EMPOWERMENT.

If you dare to use JibberJobber, that’s just what you’ll get.  Empowerment.  Control.  A peace of mind.  No more “am I forgetting something???”

What a difference that would have made in my own job search!

Thanks for sharing, Mark!

mark_hoven_linkedin_profile

what where
job title, keywords or company
city, state or zip jobs by job search

JibberJobber is a powerful tool that lets you manage your career, from job search to relationship management to target company management (and much more). Free for life with an optional upgrade.

Sign Up Now! »

Backup/Export/Download iPhone Contacts

April 14th, 2014

my_contacts_backup_logoI’m sure there are a gazillion ways to get contacts off of your iPhone.  One of my users shared this tool:  My Contacts Backup

This exports to a vcard, or you can go into the settings and export to a csv.  A vcard will include images and custom fields, the csv apparently doesn’t.  You can also find easy and free vcard->csv converters online, although once again, this will not include images (that’s just the nature of csv – no rich media).

Other JibberJobber users are successfully syncing their iPhone contacts with their Google (Gmail) contacts, although I’ve read that this is nearly impossible for some, and super easy for others.  If you can sync your iPhone contacts with Gmail Contacts, then syncing that to Gmail is just a few clicks away.

One of the comments that seemed funny on the My Contacts Backup page was this: “ Last year during Sundance iCloud (aka iCrap) wiped the last 9 months of contacts and all of my notes.”  There’s always a nickname for everything, isn’t there?  I don’t expect to see that kind of nickname in the Apple userbase, though… !

Any other tricks or tips for getting contacts from your iPhone?

what where
job title, keywords or company
city, state or zip jobs by job search

JibberJobber is a powerful tool that lets you manage your career, from job search to relationship management to target company management (and much more). Free for life with an optional upgrade.

Sign Up Now! »

JibberJobber Updates: A New Landing Page, Multi-Associations, and more… !

April 7th, 2014

Last night we rolled out some enhancements to JibberJobber.  This affects all users – free and premium.  I’m explaining the main things here, and at the bottom you can see a 6 minute video on what we did.

The first thing you’ll notice is the new landing page.  After almost eight years, we finally did something I’ve wanted to do, well, eight years ago!  You can now customize your landing page to what you want.  In this image you see my new screenshot, with only three things: the calendar up upcoming things, the job search on Indeed, and a quick-add box so I can add Contacts, Companies, etc. from that box (this is a really cool widget):

jibberjobber_update_landing_page_april_2014

#1 shows you how to add widgets you have taken off, and reorder them…

#2 shows you how to reorder widgets… simply click on this blue icon and drag it to where you want the widget to be…

#3 shows you how to remove a widget from the homepage.  If you remove it, and want it back later, simply click Manage Widgets and you can add it back.

The next major enhancement is what we call “multi-associate.”  This gives me the ability to have multipler:

  • Contacts and Companies on a Job
  • Contacts and Jobs on a Company
  • Jobs and Companies on a Contact

In other words, let’s say your friend is working at two companies, and worked at another company that is your target company.  Before, you could only associate ONE Company to the Contact.  NOW, you can associate as many Companies as you want with one Contact… this is really cool.  As per the bullets above, we extended this multi-associate functionality to Jobs, Companies and Contacts.

jibberjobber_updates_multi-associate_april_2014

In the screenshot above you can see I’ve double-clicked the gray box to edit the field (for both the Companies and the Jobs), and I can simply type in Companies or Jobs and have them show in a dropdown… I hit enter and it adds the the company to the list.  Notice the funky up/down arrow… this allows me to change the order (or, priority) of an associated record.  For example, if someone is currently at Ebay, but used to work at American Express, I’ll have Ebay in the first position… but if they work at American Express now, I’ll reorder that and have Ebay in the second position.  The red-x icon will remove the associated record… it’s pretty cool, and more real-world.

The third enhancement I wanted to introduce is the ability for you to leave a testimonial.  I know people love JibberJobber, and we’ve done a bad job letting you share what you really think.  We have give you the ability to tell others through a testimonial form… I know, it sounds boring, but some guy acused us of making up fake testimonials… now we allow you to write testimonials, and optionally include your picture and URL (like, a LinkedIn URL)… we’re hoping you’ll take a moment to share what you think about JibberJobber with others.

Check out the video below for a short walk-through of these three things:

what where
job title, keywords or company
city, state or zip jobs by job search

JibberJobber is a powerful tool that lets you manage your career, from job search to relationship management to target company management (and much more). Free for life with an optional upgrade.

Sign Up Now! »

User Question: Tracking a Recruiter and an Unknown Target Company

March 25th, 2014

A user from Europe asks some questions (slightly reworded), which I will answer below:

At my level and with my expertise, I usually go through a headhunter to get hired. How does the system handle this?

He gets more specific below, but just to clarify, if you only work with recruiters, I would use JibberJobber to track the recruiter (as a Contact), the recruiter’s company (as a Company – and only if it is not a one-person-company), and each job (as a Job) I learn about from the recruiter.  More below…

How do I enter a job opportunity that is being proposed by a headhunter, and where I have both the headhunter contact as well as company contacts?

And here is where it gets really COOL, although I’m a little embarrassed to write this now, because we should have designed this in 8 years ago.  Soon, really soon (I’m told this week) we are going to do a release to JibberJobber where we add a few more features.  One of the features is the long-overdue ability to have multiple contacts and multiple companies associated to each job record.  This reflects the real-world scenario of pursuing a job with a recruiter, then getting introduced to three people at a panel interview… you will be able to associate that job with all four of those people.

It gets better… see my answer to the next question…

Sometimes the headhunter does not disclose the company name or company contact. How do I handle this in the system?

This is the same issue, with a different record.  We will also be able to associate multiple companies to the job.  So, associate the recruiter’s company, and then when you find out what the hiring company is, add it and associate it to the job.  You will even be able to prioritize the contacts and companies.

So, to let the cat out of the bag, we are doing this thing for contacts, companies and jobs, which means:

On a Company record: associate multiple Contacts and Jobs (you can already do this, but you’ll soon be able to reorder/reprioritize them)

On a Contact record: associate multiple Companies (which allows you to create more of a work history, as well as track people with more than one current company) and multiple Jobs (if you are working with that person for more than one job).

On a Job record: associate multiple Contacts (like the recruiter, and people at the company that you meet) and multiple Companies (like the recruiter company and the name of the company with the opening).

This is a great enhancement, and should make your data make a lot more sense.

what where
job title, keywords or company
city, state or zip jobs by job search

JibberJobber is a powerful tool that lets you manage your career, from job search to relationship management to target company management (and much more). Free for life with an optional upgrade.

Sign Up Now! »

Searching for Great Job Search Advice: How to Find It

March 17th, 2014

I regularly look for old blog posts to send people to, in response to their questions.  Sometimes it is job search related, sometimes it is about depression in the job search, sometimes it about how to send a job search newsletter… sometimes it is about how to import LinkedIn contacts into JibberJobber.

When I go to Google to do a search I find that JibberJobber blog posts are not as high up because of the 1%ers of the internet (MSN, AOL, etc….. the article archives that have a lot of content, but their content is “questionable” :p).

The search tool on the blog kind of stinks… so here’s how I easily find the content I’m looking for.  You can use this to find posts/articles from JibberJobber, or any other place you trust (just replace JibberJobber for another source):

Easiest Method: 

In a search box, simply add “JibberJobber” to any of your searches.

job search advice -> JibberJobber job search advice

job search newsletter -> JibberJobber job search newsletter

job search depression -> JibberJobber job search depression

import from linkedin -> JibberJobber import from linkedin

personal relationship manager -> JibberJobber personal relationship manager

And so forth… this isn’t rocket science, but if you leave off JibberJobber (or the name of your trusted content source) you will get a plethora of generic junk articles.

Next Easiest Method:

This is also very easy… you just have to remember to do it (and do it right).  Simply do a “site search,” which I blogged about here: Do you use Site:_____ in Google searches? I DO!

Guess how I found that post?  I did a site search, like this:

google_site_search

 

Check out the post for a very easy tutorial on how to do it… but really, a site search is as simple as putting site:(websitename) (search criteria) in the search box.

So, any of the examples above could be refined, like this example:

jibberjobber_google_site_search_job_search_advice

 

There you go – two simple ways to get more relevant results back in your searches – enjoy!

 

what where
job title, keywords or company
city, state or zip jobs by job search

JibberJobber is a powerful tool that lets you manage your career, from job search to relationship management to target company management (and much more). Free for life with an optional upgrade.

Sign Up Now! »

Organize Your Job Search with JibberJobber: User Testimonial (Gwen Alegre)

March 12th, 2014

A while back I got an email from a career coach who I’ve never heard of (and would NEVER recommend) who furiously stated (seriously, he was furious) that any testimonials I had on the homepage of JibberJobber were falsified.  We went back and forth a couple of times and he even threatened to sue me if I posted his message.

A constructive and important message I got from his baseless and completely immature message to me was that I needed to do a better job of getting testimonials from users.  Around this same time I got an unsolicited testimonial from a user (who I happened to have a call with this week – yeah!).  Gwen Alegre said I could share this with you.  In the future I hope to get more of these, with pictures and LinkedIn profiles, to share with you.  It is my hope that my competition does not approach these people, but I can only hope.

In January Gwen Alegre (a change management and software UI expert) wrote:

gwen_alegre_headshot_JibberJobber_testimonialWow! I love JibberJobber.

I’ve been working with it for a week or two and it is flexible and robust. It does a fine job of managing my contacts, companies, and follow-up action items (and linking between these items).

There is simply no way I could keep it all straight without JibberJobber. For new users, you do need to spend a little time entering in your information (various uploads help too), but once you do, you’ll come to rely on it for your job search efforts daily.

I also paid for the premium version and the email to log feature is really terrific.

I can’t say enough about this app!

Thank you Gwen – this was a very nice message after dealing with that “other guy.”

 

what where
job title, keywords or company
city, state or zip jobs by job search

JibberJobber is a powerful tool that lets you manage your career, from job search to relationship management to target company management (and much more). Free for life with an optional upgrade.

Sign Up Now! »

Organize Your Job Search, Ditch The Job Search Spreadsheet

March 11th, 2014

I started out with a job search spreadsheet. I had to ditch it after a short period of time. It simply did not work with the amount of data/information I was collecting.

And then I got the idea for JibberJobber to organize my job search.  I still used my job search spreadsheet because it took a while to make JibberJobber, but once I had it, I ditched the spreadsheet.

And I haven’t looked back.

I’ve talked to career coaches, resume writers and outplacement professionals, and they have said JibberJobber, as a job search organizer, is the missing piece for job seekers.  Here are two quotes I recently read about organization in a job search:

Forbes article: Another common obstacle is clutter. She says a disorganized physical workspace or job-search system can produce mental clutter that interferes with productivity.

A cluttered job search system definitely interferes with productivity. It makes you feel out-of-control. It will most likely lead to missed appointments and missed opportunities. It will waste your time, as you try and make sense out of it. As you network more, and apply to more jobs, and interview more, a disorganized job search system will frustrate you.

All Business list of ten effective job search strategies: 9. Keep Careful Records Keeping track of the progress of your job search is important. Maintain a detailed record of all the jobs you have applied to, including communications, interviews, referrals, and follow-up actions. This will help you build a network of valuable contacts both for your current job search and for any future ones.

Everything in #9 can be done inside of JibberJobber.  But I want to focus on the last few words: and for any future ones.

I don’t want to pour salt on an open wound, but it’s not secret that this job search will not definitely be your last one.  The US Federal Gov’t wouldn’t lie to us, would they? I don’t have time to find a reference for this but I read a few years ago that they say we will be in transition EVERY two to five years.

EVERY TWO TO FIVE YEARS!

Sounds fun, doesn’t it?

It’s no secret that no matter how the economy is going, you have NO job security.  In a bad economy you might get laid off and be in a long job search.  In an awesome economy you might be wanted by other companies (who will pay you more).  Either way, you will change jobs regularly.

Wouldn’t it be great if you could be in more control of these transitions?  What if you had a nurtured network that was ready to help you in your next transition?  Clearly, LinkedIn is not the answer to that.  You need something like a CRM… you need a career management tool like JibberJobber.

JibberJobber is not your silver bullet for job search or career management or networking, but it should be an indispensable tool.  Empower yourself, and get serious about this stuff!  I didn’t, for various dumb reasons, and my job search was long and painful.

what where
job title, keywords or company
city, state or zip jobs by job search

JibberJobber is a powerful tool that lets you manage your career, from job search to relationship management to target company management (and much more). Free for life with an optional upgrade.

Sign Up Now! »

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