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.”


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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.


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.

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JibberJobber for veterans: why?

March 10th, 2014

Last week I talked to a veteran.  The call was exciting and rewarding, and I was again reminded why I give a year of premium to veterans at no cost.

I do this as a thank you.

I was reminded, during the call, of a call I had with a veteran a few years ago.  When he understood that I was offering a year of JibberJobber premium as a “thank you,” he got quiet for a while, then expressed heartfelt gratitude.  He said: “a lot of companies say they support the troops, and put a sticker or flag in their window, and that’s great.  But what you are doing really, really helps us.”

I had goosebumps and found it hard to respond.

After our call I saw this neat story in the news about the race in San Jose where one runner (Erik Wittreich, a former Green Beret) went out of his way during the race to shake the hand of a veteran… a 95 year old veteran, who was cheering on the racers.


It was a touching story.  But this part disturbed me (Bell is the 95 year old veteran):

“They showed a lot of love to me, and they recognized me,” Bell told ABC News. “I liked that.”

Bell was a former Army corporal who trained paratroopers all over the world for the Office of Strategic Services (OSS) that preceded the CIA.

“I never got recognition in my life,” he told Sulek on Tuesday. “I was a jumper in the OSS. That’s all.”

I think it’s kind of sad that Bell didn’t feel like anyone recognized him.  Maybe he humbly didn’t recognize the Nov 11, July 4, etc. holidays that recognized servicemen and servicewomen.  I’m glad that he had that once-in-a-lifetime experience… what a choice opportunity.

Now let me tell you something special about all of this recognition stuff.  I have been around military, in one way or another, since I was eleven.  I know people that serve, their spouses, their kids, and even their grandkids.  There is something I have learned, over the years, and recently as I talk to veterans who use JibberJobber.

Veterans, in general, do not feel entitled to handouts, help, etc. They do not feel like we (people, stores, companies, restaurants, the government) needs to give them everything.  This is NOT about entitlement.

They do, however, want a chance to show who they are, and to be respected.  Not respected because they are veterans necessarily, but respected as human beings.

How can we, you and me, give them that chance?

When you see special deals and offers for veterans, please do not think that it is an entitlement thing.  What I’ve found is that they are sincerely gracious, but never expecting or demanding.

We can do our veterans a better service by giving them humane respect, and a chance.



How To: Email2Log – when you forget to include your JibberJobber email (or other scenarios)

March 7th, 2014

You know what bugs me? When I send an email and mean to do the email2log thing (just the coolest thing in JibberJobber!),but forget to put my ultra-secret email address in the BCC field.

You see, using the BCC field saves me probably an hour a day.  If you don’t know why, or if you want to save an hour a day, check out this blog post on Email2Log.

What do you do when you forget to do it?  Do you then have to go into JibberJobber, search for the contact, click “Add Log Entry,” and then copy and paste from your email to the Log Entry?

No, you don’t!  We made it easy to fix this “oops.”  

The way you do it will be helpful in another scenario… for example, sometimes I take notes from a phone call in an email message.  I’m not sure why I do that, I got in the habit of doing it years ago.  (I find myself switching to taking notes in a Log Entry, though, especially since we put in the auto-save on Log Entries)

In both of these cases there is something that is written somewhere that I want in a Log Entry… so how do you easily get it into a Log Entry without copying and pasting?


Simply send an email to your ultra-secretive email address… you don’t have to send it to anyone else.

In the body of the email, put this line:,,___,____,___  (you can have as many as you want)

So, in your email we look for that line and will make a Log Entry for any email address there. BONUS: we’ll also make a new Contact record, if it doesn’t exist already.

This is super, duper cool.  I use it more than I thought I would.

Guess what?  That is only one of the things you can do with a special line in the body.  You can also create a Log Entry, and associate the email to Companies and Jobs.

Tell me that’s not cool. To see an example, go to Account, then the Email tab, and click the help icon.

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Ask The Expert (ATE): Robert Merrill, Internal Recruiter, Sr. Tech Recruiter

March 5th, 2014

This call was AWESOME. Off the charts. Seriously. There is so much good information in this call that it should be required to listen to.

I’m sure there are recruiters who do things differently. That’s one of the challenges that job seekers face: there is no single right or best answer for the situations we face (like, working with recruiters). Robert gives us a great look into the processes and systems that we need to know about. You can tell he has a heart for job seekers. Enjoy:

Note: This is hosted on Vimeo.  To make full-size, push play and then on the bottom right click the icon that looks like this:



The Discouraged Job Seeker and an Interesting History of the “Career Path”

March 4th, 2014

On Friday I posted The Job Seeker’s Secret Weapon: MENTALITY, which I think is a really important post for all to read.  I referenced “a guy” that sent me an email that kind of triggered that post.  I sent him a link to the post and he had a brilliant response.

No amount of massaged economic and unemployment reports can compete with the reality of what has happened to “careers.”  I think there is tremendous opportunity in the changes, but that doesn’t take away any pain that we, from baby boomers to Gen Z, have to live with.

With “the guy’s” permission, I’m posting the email in it’s entirety.  Please take a moment to read what I thought was a brilliant message to me – to brilliant to just stay tucked away in my own inbox:

Hi Jason,

Thanks again, it really does mean a lot.  It was a great blog.  You captured the essence of my feelings extremely effectively! Very cogent.

Somewhat related, as a point of reference or context:  I notice more and more, on LinkedIn, the number of GenX middle tier tech-managers like myself, seemingly out of work.  I think the phenomena is bigger than it appears on the surface. Of course, I am biased :-)

Note: the following is a stream of consciousness “rambling babbledeegook”. Please do not hesitate to ignore/delete it.


The fact remains: During the entirety of the 1990’s, MANY techies (my age) were able to forgo classical higher education, because the demand was *so high* for network and systems engineers, program managers, and others across the broad scope of the “tech industry”.  We were so busy building the WWW, it did not occur to many, a college degree would one day (soon) become a bullet proof glass ceiling.

In an ironically fickle way, those of us (as described) with a strong sense of ownership and responsibility were hit much harder than those who weren’t as “professionally honorable” (they typically remained in lower Individual roles)…and here is why: Many of us climbed half way up the ladder into the mid-range of management; necessarily losing our tight grip on technical skills to broaden our scope. This is necessary to manage the synergistic boundary where strategic demands meet tactical implementation…

But, when the labor force took a huge hit after the turn of the century, suddenly, there were a LOT less jobs for those of us senior enough to have moved (half way) up the food chain….

Now fast forward a few years, to the end of the first decade of the 21st century: The juxtaposition of all those prior elements, in combination with human nature (middle age, building families)… resolves into a painful mid-life professional crisis that is….quite legitimate.

In hindsight, migrating above the day-to-day trench warfare of Individual Contributorship during the DotCom days, was not much more than a professionally brutal reminder of the Technology Caste system (at least here in Silicon Valley) we live within.

The lessons learned:

  • Get a degree… I don’t care what its for: just make sure it is from a reputable institution.  This can be a REAL limitation if you wait until it is too late (financially).  Note: I fall into this last camp
  • See a shrink:   Getting educated in “you” is a HUGE benefit:  You are a mess inside…Understanding *WHY*, will REALLY help keep your ego and emotions in check, when you are tested (like my cisco failure)…
  • Read up on psychology:  Understanding that everyone else is a mess inside as well, and that everyone else has the same physiological needs as yourself (wanting to be safe yet significant, and all the mechanisms we invent to attain this, for example)
  • Deal with boring:  Understand that you cannot see the adventure lying in wait, just over the horizon (out of view)…Watching that professional “pot” boil is certainly boring..but the steam eventually bubbling off can be harnessed to propel your career: IF YOU PLAN FOR IT.
  • The concept that every job is TEMPORARY is absolute GOSPEL.  PLAN FOR REPLACING YOURSELF OR BEING REPLACED….THE MOMENT YOU LAND A JOB is the MOMENT you need to update your CV and start looking for the next one.  There is not a single company that can legitimately “look out for the best interests of its employees” at all times:  You ARE disposable; get over it, accept it….and plan for it. prep to harness the steam.


Positive Mentality is challenging when you are starting at the bridge…not to consider the precipice it spans, but instead to consider its ability to provide shelter for you and your family.  That said, one of my favorite all time quotes is from Winston Churchill, and for the most part, I am known for being a stalwart proponent of his advice: 

“Never, never, never give up.”

I had to read that email twice, but really appreciate the perspective and the learning points. This is something I would give to my kids!



Ask The Expert: Job Search Edition

March 3rd, 2014

Tomorrow morning is the next Ask The Expert, with Robert Merrill. Have you heard of these?  They are AWESOME!

Tomorrow’s is with Robert, an internal recruiter specializing in high tech and engineers.  You can learn more here, or just sign up here.

You might not be familiar with the Ask The Expert series so let me share the back-story.

Over a year ago I decided I wanted to help my amazing contacts who have expertise in career-related topics intersect with my users, people who are interested in job search, career management or JibberJobber.  What started out as a fun idea turned into a very cool series of interviews.  You can see ALL of the Ask The Expert calls we’ve done at (feel free to share that link).

Below is a list of recordings, to date. I don’t expect you to spend 15 hours and listen to them all right now, but I do suggest you check them out over the next few weeks – there is GREAT stuff in these interviews (the name links to their website, after the dash links to

Kim Mohuiddinon your resume

Jon Sozapersonal branding

Charlotte Weekscareers in the association, society and non-profit world

Karen HullerI have my resume, now what?

Jason Alba (me, Jan 2013) – 13 things to do for your career in 2013

Tim Tyrell-Smithalternative revenue streams

Nick Corcodilosworking with recruiters and headlines

Dick Bolles (the legendary author of What Color Is Your Parachute) – open questions

Jason AlbaCareer Management 3.0 and 51 Alternatives to a Real Job

Jack Chapmansalary negotiation

Dave Perry guerrilla marketing for job hunters

Mark LeBlancbusiness growth coach (principles of business growth for an individual in career management mode)

Dan Schawbelpersonal branding and millenials

The Recruiting Animal external recruiter talking shop, experiences, etc.

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