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Jeremy Hanks Pays To Get His Garbage Can Cleaned

September 11th, 2009

I was checking out some local Utah business blogs and read one of my favorite entrepreneurs, Jeremy Hanks.  I’ve met Jeremy on a number of occasions and love watching the progress of his super-cool company.  He has achieved a lot and I look up to him as an example.

He recently wrote a blog post called Unique Service + Hard Work = Opportunity.  This is a terrific story, and one that we can learn from.  It starts:

A couple days ago, I got a knock on my door, and a guy that was wearing blue rubber gloves was there when I opened it. He said something like: “I lost my job a while back, and got sick of not working, so I’m out providing a service today. I’ll clean out your garbage cans for $10 each, or two for $15. I use a pressure washer and industrial strength bleach and I literally climb inside them and scrub them by hand.”

I hired him on the spot, for two reasons: 1. my garbage cans were nasty; 2. I’d have hired him anyway, because here’s a guy down on his luck making his own.

read the entire story here…

The story is awesome… remember the Thom Singer post where I talk about pride and humility?  I doubt this guy is too proud… don’t you think? In the next paragraph it says:

He says a lot of days, he makes $300-$400…

Can you believe this?  I absolutely love this.

$300 – $400 – that is a lot of money.  Here’s the math:

$300 * 5 days = $1,500/week

$1,500 * 4.33 weeks in a month (avg) = $6,495/month

$6,495 * 12 months = $77,940/year

That is a LOT of money.

In my neighborhood we have a ton of people who want to mow our lawn, or do our carpets.  But never have I had anyone come up to wash my garbage cans for $10.  I would pay it on the spot.

Why am I sharing this with you?  Some of you are beyond getting anywhere with your job search.  This is an idea that can help you pay your bills… even save your house from foreclosure.

Want a bonus idea?  Check the blog on Monday and I’ll share why this business idea is the bomb.

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Time Magazine on Labor Day, Unemployment and Stress

September 10th, 2009

I should have run this on Monday (Labor Day), but oh well…

I saw an article on cnn/Time.com called For Unemployed, Labor Day Another Stressful Day.  Yup, I’d have to agree.  I want to pull out some parts of the article and comment on them.  Sorry for the negative post and thoughts… I guarantee tomorrow will be 1,000% positive!

>> The nearly 15 million unemployed Americans won’t enjoy Labor Day as a relaxing respite from work

Ah, there you go – how many competitors do you have?  15M.

>> “It’s hard to maintain your focus that you’re a valuable member of society when you go three months and nobody really wants to employ you,” says…

Try being unemployed for 4 months.  Or 10.  Or 24.  Won’t happen to you?  Perhaps not, but I’d suggest a healthy dose of career preparation.

>> The economy is showing signs of being on the mend. Yet that’s hardly reassuring to the unemployed this Labor Day weekend. The job market is in lousy shape and will stay that way for a while.

Absolutely right.  Economists are optimistic that good stuff is coming… but if you think good stuff is going to happen the day they say it will, you are mistaken.  Check out my webinar with Mark Hovind where he talks about the idea of when the recession is over, and when we can feel the effects of not being in a recession anymore.  These two things don’t happen on the same day.

>> And it could take four years or more for the unemployment rate to fall back down to a normal level of about 5 percent.

Ah yes, now we are talking sensibly.  Let me put this into perspective – are you ready for a crappy 4 years, with so many unemployed, companies not investing or spending, etc.?  Waiting for the economy to correct itself might not be a strong job search strategy.

>> Labor Secretary Hilda Solis’ advice to the unemployed: “I would tell those workers and families not to lose sight of hope.” She urges them to seek the skills, education and training needed for new jobs. But she acknowledges these are tough times.

Thanks for the advice Hilda.  Attitude is critical – but many are beyond “losing sight of hope.”

My advice to job seekers can be found here: Career Management Tips While At College (not just for college kids), and:

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Thom Singer on the Job Search

September 9th, 2009

Thom Singer has a great post with his job search advice.  Thom is not a job search or career coach, but he is a networking expert (he has multiple books on networking) and a really keen networker who actually meets people and tries to nurture relationships (not common amongst networking authors, I’ve found).

Thom has four points that he calls “four common job hunting mistakes.”  Here they are (in red) with MY commentary (in black)… read his full post for Thom’s no-nonsense thoughts.  Of course, he’s spot on.

1. Pride Kills Opportunities. Never be afraid to reach out to your network. If you have properly invested in establishing real “mutually beneficial” relationships with others, they will be there to help you in your hour of need.

When I sat down with a job counselor, after I finally admitted I couldn’t do this job search on my own (it was about a month into my job search), he asked “who do you know?”  I had mentally disqualified everyone (family can’t help, friends can’t help, past coworkers can’t help, I can’t reach out to past clients, etc.) and said “no one.”

I was so wrong to think that… but I was also too scared/proud to approach those people.  Humility will go a long ways in your job search, and pride will allow you to see all of the fake barriers that prevent you from moving forward.  Read Thom’s comments on this point.

2. Blindly sending resumes does not work. No matter how good you are, a blind inquiry will most likely not produce interviews.

Getting your resume (or LinkedIn Profile, or business card, or whatever) is going to be a lot more effective if you have someone hand it to the hiring manager or decision-maker – as opposed to a cold email.  There is one tactic I’m exploring that might produce different results, and that is having a targeted resume distribution sent out to recruiters and HR who are in your space… more on that later.

I was amazed that I sent out dozens and dozens and dozens of recruiters and got NO response.  It’s like my email was directed to the BLACK HOLE.

Then I came to understand that recruiters can get hundreds of resumes a day… what set mine apart from all of the others?  NOTHING.

Network your way into the job!

3. A bad attitude will keep you unemployed. How you think about your own situation will have an impact on your success.

SImilar to #1, of course… your attitude will have a huge, significant impact on your success.  Have a bad attitude?  No one you network with will want to introduce you to the person you need to talk to.  They don’t want to risk their “relationship capital” by sending someone so negative and hurt to their contact.

The perfect post to read with regard to your attitude is also one of my favorites: I Smell Blood is where I share a time when I had a bad attitude and an HR exec called me on it.  Favorite line?  “HR can smell blood from a mile away!

4. Don’t just focus on yourself. Help others. Even when you are having a tough time, finding ways to helps others can make you feel good and bring good karma.

I stopped focusing on myself after I had read Keith Ferrazzi’s Never Eat Alone.

Know what?

That’s when my job search got FUN. Seriously.  The stress started melting away as I focused more on helping others, and feeling the rewards from that type of service.  Try it – it’s almost magical.

Thanks Thom, for your four points!

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Personal Branding Example: David Kearsley

September 8th, 2009

I retired the You Get It Personal Branding Awards a few months ago but said I’d highlight awesome examples that would have one.  Here’s one – David Kearsley’s website.  You can read David’s guest post at JobMob where he breaks down the anatomy of his website… it’s an interesting post.

Here are my thoughts on David’s online strategy and use of DavidKearsley.com:

  1. He did it right with the domain – he owns his name!! Do you!  You must!   I even ate my own dog food and bought JasonAlba.com – I really think this is critical.  Good job.
  2. Typically I don’t like dark background with light font, but this one does it for me.  I don’t know why… David is a senior level executive, and this site just looks classy, professional, competent, polished… just like him.
  3. The logo and header are really cool – at the top his name is branded, and the tagline is Igniting > Vision | Solutions | Results … I know he’s series about CxO stuff.
  4. Based on his picture (gray hair), I’m guessing that David is someone who could be facing age discrimination (I write about that a lot on this blog).  But he looks very with-it and current as he has ways to connect with him including Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, etc. Right off the bat you get the impression that he’s current with these things, which probably means he’s quite current with anything he should be.
  5. The About page is standard, and it’s fine.  But I’m in love with the Expertise page… read the first paragraph and the first line of the second paragraph – this guy is awesome, competent and has terrific experience!  I really like how he broke this out from his About page.
  6. I think I get what he’s doing with the “Of Interest” section – something like the You Get It perhaps?  If so, I like it.  I’m excited to see his BLOG get up and running…

I asked David Kearsley if he was happy he was getting famous (there was a lot of buzz when the post went up on JobMob) and his reply was:

Famous – no, but I want to be “memorable and remembered”

I’ve remembered it since I saw it – so that objective is being met.

Great job David!

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Importing Custom Fields into JibberJobber

September 7th, 2009

I really didn’t know we could do this until I saw an email from my Customer Support team … my first response was to write back to Customer Support and say: Really?  REALLY??

I had always wanted to do this but figured it would take too much time….

But this is AWESOME!

Here’s a video:

The basics is this:

  1. In JibberJobber you can create “custom fields” (also known as “user defined fields” – we call them “services” (long story)).
  2. When you import from a spreadsheet, you CAN import data into those custom fields.

Watch the video to see how…

(note: importing is a premium feature – I think it’s worth the $9.95 a month :))

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Onsite JibberJobber Presentation at NYC PMI Chapter

September 4th, 2009

On October 5th from 5:30pm to 7:15 pm there is a special networking event that you might be interested in if you are in New York City.

Norman Reiss will be presenting at the local NYC PMI chapter meeting – cost for non-members is only $20 which includes a light buffet.  I’ve been to a PMI meeting once (in Salt Lake) and it was pretty impressive – it’s a very professional group with people from all kinds of different companies.

Norman was one of the earliest JibberJobber users, and has logged in over 800 times (I usually don’t share user information but I think this is a testament to his knowledge of JibberJobber – he’s definitely a POWER USER and qualified to teach this group how to get value out of JibberJobber as a career management tool!).

If you are in or near NYC I recommend you carve out time to go to this meeting/presentation – great networking, great topic, a chance to meet Norman in person (ask him anything about JibberJobber :)), and dinner.

You can learn more about Norman at his blog Nonprofit Bridge as well as his Twitter page: @nonprofitbridge.

Anne-Marie Ditta is a job search and career coach for Project Managers.  She is based out of New York City and will likely be at the PMI chapter meeting.  You can learn more about Anne-Marie at her website, My Career Coach, read her stuff on her blog, or schedule a phone consultation .  If you are a project manager, this is your coach!  Anne-Marie is a JibberJobber Partner.

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LinkedIn for Executives – 90 Minutes!

September 3rd, 2009

On September 23rd at 1pm MST (4pm EST) I’ll be doing a special 90 minute webinar called LinkedIn Essentials for Executives.

I’m really jazzed about this webinar because I’ve accumulated a lot of knowledge and experience in the last couple of years.  I’ve done this type of webinar before, even for Experts Connection, but this time I get the entire 90 minutes just for LinkedIn – and to focus on executives!

The price is $50 if you are a Netshare member and $60 if you are not.  The description on the Experts Connection page is just a portion of what we are going to go over… with 90 minutes I get to dig down deeper.

HOWEVER, rest assured this is not going to be a tour of LinkedIn and it’s features.  I am approaching it from an executive perspective:

  • what do executives need to know (and what can they ignore) on LinkedIn?
  • what do executives need to do (and what can they ignore) on LinkedIn?

This will be packed, informative, and valuable…!  If you want to jump on, click here to register.

Other places to look for LinkedIn Help include my LinkedIn blog, my book on LinkedIn (I’m on LinkedIn — Now What???) and my LinkedIn DVD: LinkedIn for Job Seekers.

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Keith Ferrazzi: How to be better than 95% of your competition

September 2nd, 2009

I got a few emails yesterday about Keith Ferrazzi’s post How to Surpass 95% of your Competition with One Simple Gesture.

Absolutely, totally, 100% agree with him.

The email I got, though, was “I can do this in JibberJobber!” or “How can I do this in JibberJobber?”

Here’s my response, in video… I’ll show you from start to finish – the scenerio is that you meet someone for the very first time and want to implement Ferrazzi’s suggestion to surpass 95% of your competition… check this out:

(in the bottom right of the video below you’ll see the image with four arrows pointing out – if you click on that you can see this video in full screen)

Are you doing this? Do you agree with Keith Ferrazzi?

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4 Ways to Find the Best Employers (guest post)

September 1st, 2009

This is a guest post from my friend Kevin Donlin, in Minnesota.  More on him after the post.

“How can I find the best companies to work for?”

That’s a question I hear almost daily from job seekers.

It’s hard to answer … because it’s the wrong question.

Here’s the real issue beneath that question: “I don’t want to have to think hard about finding the best companies to work for.”

Admit it. You — like me and all humans — hate to think.

It takes time. You have to pick and choose. You might make a mistake. And it can give you a headache.

But unthinking behavior is a sure way to stay unemployed.

So, let’s re-phrase the query, because a well-phrased question is half-answered.

If you’ve been job hunting for more than 4 weeks, ask this question instead: “What have I NOT been willing to do to find the best companies to work for?”

That’s better. And easier to answer. In fact, I can think of 4 things you can do TODAY to find the best employers to work for …

1) Look at your connections on LinkedIn.

I mean really look. Pick 5 people you admire, view their profiles, and look for the following:

  • Where do they work now? (Could you work there?)
  • Where did they work before? (Could you work there?)
  • Who are their clients? (Could you work there?)
  • Who are their competitors? (Could you work there?)
  • Who are their vendors? (Could you work there?)

Do this for 5, 10, or more people, and you’ll surely find 5-20 prospective employers.

2) Make connections at your last employers.

Specifically, think about everyplace you’ve worked before. Now ask yourself the following questions:

  • Could you work there again? (Could you work there again? Don’t snicker — getting re-hired happens every day.)
  • Could you work for your former clients?
  • Could you work for your former competitors?
  • Could you work for your former vendors?

3) Find companies in the news.

Spend 15-20 minutes researching the Business section of your local newspaper, looking for fast, smart, growing companies. Can’t find any? Consider moving (or looking harder).

4) Ask 5 people you admire.

I saved this for last, but it really ought to come first. Because, the more conversations you have, the more people will know about your job search — and the faster you’ll get hired.

So, ask the 5 most-connected people you know for advice.

Tip: Take them all out for coffee, bring a legal pad, take notes. In 30-45 minutes, you’ll surely come away with answers that will shorten your job search. Total cost: Less than $30.

Resource: If you’re in the job market and want to try something new, you can see Guerilla Job Search secrets caught on video and learn more here.

Kevin Donlin has partnered with Dave Perry, one of my all-time favorites in the job search world.  I had dinner with Kevin last year in Minneapolis, and got to know him pretty well – he’s a very cool guy, and quite passionate about helping people get results in their job search.  Kevin and Dave have a Guerilla Job Search Boot Camp and I hear great things about it from people who have finished it.

Also, here’s a P.S. from Kevin’s email: If you know anyone looking for a job in the Detroit area, please tell them to come meet David Perry and me in person on Sept. 17 — http://www.PutMichiganBackToWork.com. Doesn’t that look cool?

(some of the links in this post are affiliate links)

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