Getting Started on JibberJobber? Orientation Videos vs. Getting Started Videos (the difference)

November 30th, 2015

Last week I got this question from someone new to JibberJobber:

“Can you please explain the difference between the approx 20 Getting Started Videos and the 9 Orientation video series. Combined, it is over 5 hours of material – kind of daunting to learn a tool that should simplify my job search.”

Great question… we have had the Orientation videos for so long, and only added the Getting Started videos recently enough that I didn’t think about differentiating them.  Here’s what they are (you can find both of these on the menu at the Videos page):

The JibberJobber Orientation is a recording of one webinar, which was split into 9 clips that are around 10 minutes each. This is the “welcome to JibberJobber” introduction, including a history of JibberJobber, and my linear idea of what you would want to know/do to get started.  I expect that after going through this orientation, you would have an excellent idea of what JibberJobber is, and how it could be a great tool for you.

The Getting Started videos are recordings from 10ish minute live webinars I used to do on Friday mornings, called Focus Fridays.  I would pick one topic and try to completely explain in about 10 minutes.  We wouldn’t go into any other topics.  After I did a bunch of these, I decided to figure out what order to put these in so a new user would get the most value out of them, and then they could watch any of them they wanted.  While the Orientation (above) is a 90 minute “welcome to JibberJobber!”, the Getting Started is a buffet of topics that you can pick and choose from.  Want to go deeper on Topic X, but not ready for Topic Y?  Just browse through the videos on the Getting Started page and watch the topic that is most relevant to where you are at right now.

If I were just getting started on JibberJobber today, here’s what I would do:

Start to watch the Orientation, go put JibberJobber into perspective, and get an understanding of what it can do.  I find the questions I commonly answer about List Panels (how to filter search results, how to add, remove, or reorder columns) are covered in the Orientation videos.

I would then just cherry-pick topics from the Getting Started list, based on what I’m ready to do in JibberJobber.

I hope this helps explain the difference.  I don’t intend for anyone to watch hours and hours of videos before they get started… most people get it enough to get started, and then come back to the Getting Started as a reference tool.  Here are the topics in Getting Started… which interests you the most? (click here to find these videos)

  • Getting Started: Introduction (1)
  • Getting Started: Overwhelmed? Watch this! (1.5)
  • Getting Started: Homepage & Widgets (2)
  • Getting Started: Setting Up Tags (3)
  • Getting Started: Email2Log Setup (4)
  • Getting Started: Email2Log Advanced (5)
  • Getting Started: Log Entries and Action Items (6)
  • Getting Started: Verifying Action Items and Log Entries Got In (7)
  • Getting Started: Log Entries and Action Item List Panel (8)
  • Getting Started: Optimizing the List Panel (9)
  • Getting Started: Managing Duplicates (10)
  • Getting Started: Exporting from LinkedIn (11)
  • Getting Started: Importing from a CSV File (12) (entirely new design as of November 25, 2015)
  • Getting Started: Recurring Action Items (13)
  • Getting Started: Calendar Views (14)
  • Getting Started: Interview Prep (15)
  • Getting Started: Job Description Analysis (16)
  • Getting Started: Events on Jobs (17)
  • Getting Started: The Job Journal (18)
  • Getting Started: Account and Preferences (19)

You can ALWAYS just reach out to us and ask us for help on anything you are stuck on… don’t feel like you have to watch any of these videos (although, many times we’ll reference videos or blog posts when we reply)

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Black Friday Job Search

November 27th, 2015

Are you one to take advantage of Black Friday?  I have once or twice, and while it was an adrenaline-rush experience, it’s not anything I care to do. I want to be with my family and friends… and so I stay home and avoid shopping experiences.

If you don’t have family or friends to be with, and are using some quiet time for your job search, you know that reaching out to people will get you no responses today.  What can you do?  Go for Stephen Covey’s habit #7: Sharpen your saw.

Read something, watch an online course, practice something, do something.  Expand your knowledge.  Nothing wrong with taking time to sharpen the saw.  Here’s a quote supposedly from Abraham Lincoln:

“Give me six hours to chop down a tree and I will spend the first four sharpening the axe.” – Abraham Lincoln

What are you doing to keep your saw sharp?  Here’s an expanded anecdote of this concept.

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Happy Thanksgiving!

November 26th, 2015

I know not everyone in the world celebrates this holiday, but most of the U.S. does.

I’m thankful… for YOU.  Thanks for going on this crazy JibberJobber journey with us…

What are YOU thankful for?


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When The Layoff Is Not A Curse

November 25th, 2015

When people tell me or my wife they got laid off we usually congratulate them.

Getting laid off was the push we needed to move on.  We were stuck, and it was unhealthy both physically and mentally.  I wanted to make a change but I was trapped into a steady salary, health insurance, vacation time, etc.  I still had a vision of where the company would go, even though the management and board was hard to work with and didn’t support our efforts.

I got laid off.  And I’ve been able to thrive outside of that job.

Here’s a story that you should read, ponder and discuss: Lay-off a dream come true. (just go through the simple one question online survey and you can read the whole thing)

This is the story about John Bruch. I love how he laughed uncontrollably when he got laid off.  I also love how he totally landed on his feet.

Read the story. Could you make lemonade out of lemons, like John did? It helped that he had the tools (and knowledge) and the recipe for creating income.  I bet you can do something similar.

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Courage, Entrepreneurship, The Job Search

November 20th, 2015

One of the benefits of spammers commenting on old blog posts is they bring the old blog post back to my attention.  Such is the case when a spammer left a comment on this post: Courage and the entrepreneur.

I wrote this post in May of 2009… JibberJobber was barely three years old. As I read this it reminds me of the feelings of despair and anxiety while much of my world thought I was killing it in my business.  I’ll be the first to tell you that starting a business, while a great learning experience, is really, really, really hard.  On many levels: financially, personal relationships, sanity, etc.  Here’s my post from six years ago… not much has changed.

Sometimes I think I’m nuts. Even though I’m more sane than others.  But seriously, what am I thinking, doing my own business? Where’s the safety net in that??

Sometimes I think I’m dense. Even though I got a hecka lot of education, and feel like I’m rather witty.  This “dense” thing comes mostly when I compare myself to others.

Sometimes I’m lonely. Even though I have a terrific wife and family support, and thousands upon thousands of people who read my stuff in my blogs, LinkedIn, Twitter, etc.  But when I’m sitting in my office, all by myself, with hours to go in the day, wondering which thing I should do next, I wish I had a team working with me.

Sometimes I feel poor. Especially recently as we paid for a new baby, a broken van and car, my doctor’s visit to get my calf looked at, working on getting our basement finished, and payroll… but then I think about the families I met in Mexico who know what poor, and poverty, and hunger, are, in a way that i’ll never have to know.

Usually I’m hungry. Not for food, but for success.  Actually, not even crazy-wild success, just the kind of success that pays the bills for a family with a modest lifestyle.  That’s what i told my publisher, and why I swore I’d make money from book sales.

Most of the times I’m scared. Scared of failing.  Or scared to take steps backwards.  I often wonder if I’m the right guy for the job, and then I just get back to work, day after day, to get the job done the best I can, and hope that indeed, I could be the right guy for this job.

I’m an entrepreneur.

I feel privileged, and hope that I don’t mess this up.

I feel like this is bigger than me… much bigger than me.

I feel like thousands of people need me to keep on plugging along, as my stuff (whether it’s JibberJobber or my books or DVD or blogs whatever) are making a difference to them.

I feel like my future is in MY hands. Not the CEO of Enron, or some board of directors, or some cranky boss… but my own hands.  Please let me not screw this up.

I’m an entrepreneur. While it isn’t easy, it’s rewarding.  I couldn’t imagine it any other way.

Check out the great comments from back then.

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Reducing Friction (In Your Job Search, and in JibberJobber)

November 19th, 2015

A couple of years ago I started to think about the little things that “rub people the wrong way.” The “friction” in the JibberJobber user experience.

Very quickly I started to think about friction in my own relationships… what did I do that seemed abrasive to others?

And that led me to think about JibberJobber users, who every day have opportunities to communicate with others. Have you introduced friction in your communication? For example, type-os or lack of clarity in your resumes, or saying weird things in networking situations or job interviews? Is their friction because of what you wear, or how you say things?

Friction can be good, of course.  If it weren’t for friction, cars wouldn’t stop (or go, the way they are currently designed). But in our relationships and experiences with others, I wonder when friction is good.  And if it is good, it’s probably the exception, not the rule.

Let me give you a concrete example of friction that we found in JibberJobber. It didn’t take to much effort to find this friction… we even had help from users who emailed us things like “uuuuugh!” and “yuuuuuuck!” and “heeeeelp!”  I’m specifically talking about the experience you have when you click on the Import/Export link, under Contacts.  Most of the time people click this link to import their contacts from LinkedIn (or Outlook, or wherever). This is what they say, after clicking the link:


Can you tell what you are supposed to do? The main problem I see when I put on my UI/UX goggles is that there are too many things to choose from.  You have the main menu (10 or 11 options), gray tabs (11 options), the link on the right, the icons on the bottom…  you have  LOT to look at.  Some people ignore all that and find the Choose File button, and go from there. Honestly, it’s not that hard to do… but there is too much FRICTION.  Too many choices.  Distractions.

Just like our communication, when we are unclear.  We give people too many choices (when we want them to do only one thing, like call us, or go to lunch with us), and we insert too many distractions.  It seems like it’s human nature to distract the person we’re trying to communicate with.  STOP DOING THIS.

Okay, back to JibberJobber… we’ve been working on redoing the import experience… and here is the new page (which you should see in the next few days):


Of course we still have the main menu (blue bar), but most of the superfluous stuff was moved to a collapsible box on the right.  Note the little arrow icon on the top-right of that box – click that and the box collapses, reducing all that noise.

It’s clear where you are at in the process… you are on step 1.  It’s also clear what Step 2 is all about, and what Step 3 is all about. The friction has been reduced.

This seemingly simply project took hours of design time (to analyze, come up with alternative ideas,  weigh pros and cons of ideas, and prepare communication to the dev team, and then many more hours (weeks, really) for the dev team to clean things up, reengineer the process, etc.

Don’t think that a very, very clean web design (or any design) is the result of a whimsical thought and a few minutes of effort and work.  Of course, sometimes that can happen.  But think about the difference between Yahoo’s homepage and Google’s homepage.  I remember sitting in a computer lab in college, and going to the page I always started with: Yahoo.  It was THE de facto landing page. It had news, weather… all kinds of things that you should want when you fire up the internet.  Then, someone said “you should start at”  Goo-what?  What is that?  So I went there. And all I saw was one search box and one button.

How could one search box and one button replace the ultra-useful information that Yahoo offered?  Who came up with this too-simple idea?  Apparently it was Marissa Mayer… she was the brains behind the simple page at google.  What did she do?  She identified why people came (to find something) and reduced EVERYTHING ELSE.  No friction. The page was fast to load, and delivered exactly what you wanted: the ability to type something in and get results.  No distractions. No noise.  Simple, and delivering exactly what the inherent promise was.  (It’s funny to note that she was responsible for that brilliant move away from what Yahoo had set up, defining what our internet experience should be… and now she is the CEO of Yahoo :p).

By now you probably get the idea of simplifying, reducing noise and friction.  You are bought in.  The thing I want you to realize is that the process of getting to a good, clean place is not as simple as you might think.  Put thought and effort into it.  When you come up with a simplified message, you can help many more people understand you, and how to help you.  And that effort is worth it.

mark_twainLet’s end with some quotes attributed to Mark Twain:

“To get the right word in the right place is a rare achievement. To condense the diffused light of a page of thought into the luminous flash of a single sentence, is worthy to rank as a prize composition just by itself…Anybody can have ideas–the difficulty is to express them without squandering a quire of paper on an idea that ought to be reduced to one glittering paragraph.” (reference)

“I didn’t have time to write a short letter, so I wrote a long one instead.” (reference)

“Writing is easy. All you have to do is cross out the wrong words.”(reference)

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How to Be a Better Mentor, How to Be a Better Mentee (new Pluralsight Courses)

November 17th, 2015

I recently finished two courses on mentoring (HERE), one is for mentors, the other is for mentees (HERE).  I hope that all of us can say that we have a mentor, even if it is an informal mentor.  And don’t underestimate who you are: I’m sure others are looking at you thinking you are their mentor.

The problem is that we are not trained to be mentors or mentees.  I have always heard “get a mentor” but I have never been in a class that talks about what to do to be a better mentee.  And being a mentor? It’s like you are all on your own, left to figure out how to do it and what to do.

These two courses were designed to help you be much more strategic, purposeful, and effective in your mentoring. Finally, some training.  There are three great options you have for getting access to these courses:

  1. If you haven’t done so yet, use the 30 day pass we offer through JibberJobber, to watch an unlimited amount of Pluralsight courses.  You can get started within a few minutes, don’t need a credit card, and as a bonus, for every Jason Alba course you watch, you can claim another 7 day upgrade on JibberJobber.  Watch the same course 5 times?  Claim 5*7 days of upgrade on JibberJobber!  Here’s a video that shows you how to get your 30 day pass and claim the upgrades on JibberJobber.
  2. If you’ve already used your 30 day pass, let me encourage you to pay $30 for another month.  $30 for this type of training, and the ability to watch as many courses as you want, is very inexpensive. You’ll have unlimited access to all of my courses (23 published right now), and any of the 4,000+ other courses… and you can pay $30 month-to-month.
  3. You might work at a company that already has some licensed seats that would give you access to Pluralsight.  If you don’t, talk to your boss and have them contact the Pluralsight sales team. There are discounts for companies that buy multiple seats, and you might be able to have this training at your fingertips because of your employer’s training budget!  I can put you in touch with some Pluralsight sales people if you want an introduction.

So there you go… free, or $30 out of your pocket, or using your employer’s training budget. Any way you do it, it’s a great, great deal. Below is the video showing you how to get free access, and free JibberJobber upgrades:

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Call People This Week!! #JobSearch #Holidays

November 16th, 2015

We all know that things tend to get shut down during the holidays.  Even though it’s hard to get in touch with someone, it’s important that we don’t wait until January, just because people are busy during the holidays.

In my last company we had two major efforts going on. One was developing our software, and the other was marketing and sales.  The sales cycle was anywhere from 6 months to more.  At one point, one of the executives said that we should shut down sales and marketing, and focus on development for a year. After that year, we could pick up sales and marketing efforts.  The math on that proposal made no sense at all.  Basically, he was saying to stop the marketing/sales machine from generating anything for 18+ month (12 months for development (we all know that no software project is done by the projected date) and another 6 months to work someone through the sales cycle.  Oh, I should mention: just because I said the sales cycle was anywhere *from* 6 months doesn’t mean that the average was 6 months.  Some of the prospects had been in talks with us for over a year.  That means that this guy’s plan would have stopped all revenue to our company for a solid two years.

Doesn’t make sense, does it?

Well, as job seekers, that is what we are doing when we stop networking during November and December. We try to get back in front of the right people by January, but you already know that’s a tough proposition. You have too many people to get in front of and are a tad disorganized… and they are just settling into their new year, new strategy, new challenges.  You didn’t just delay your communication for two months… you delayed your networking results for two months plus weeks or months.

Don’t do that.

In the U.S., next week is a big holiday weekend where most of your contacts will be out from Wednesday through the following Monday.  So take advantage of this, and reach out to them THIS WEEK.  They’ll reply and say “I’ll get back to you the week after Thanksgiving…”, which is JUST FINE.  Better to get that response than “I’ll get back to you in January.

This is the week.  Make the call. Send the email.

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How To: Remove or Edit Tags In Bulk

November 13th, 2015

Yesterday we talked about how to add tags to a lot of records at once… but what if you are ready to retire, or change, a tag?  That’s also really easy.  You could follow the steps from yesterday and do it from the List Panels, but there’s a better place to do it: the Tag manager.

Mouse over Contacts, Companies, or Jobs in the main menu, and click Tags (which should be the third link from the bottom):


On that next page, you will see all of the Tags you’ve created, but only for Contacts OR Companies OR Jobs.  Depends on which dropdown you clicked on.  The Tags Manager page is a very simple List Panel. On the right, you’ll see icons to edit or delete.

This is so self-explanatory I don’t know what to write about it… except one thing:

If you edit or delete a tag, it will affect all of your records that had that tag.

For example, if you had a tag “people_I_want_to_talk_to,” and you change it to “prospects,” you won’t see the old tag anymore… anytime you go to a Contact that had that old tag will now have “prospects.”

Another example, if you delete “people_I_want_to_talk_to,” you won’t see that tag on any Contacts.

If you simply want to remove the tag from one Contact, but not remove it from others, then go to that Contact and remove it from there.

Hope this helps! Tags are really powerful!

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How To: Add Tags to Many Records

November 12th, 2015

I recently got this question:

“I need to add two tags to everyone in our data base that already has the tag of [Tag-1] or [Tag-2]. Can I do this without having to go into each record?”

Tags are a powerful way to slice-and-dice your data. I use tags almost exclusively over categories… are you making use of tags? And yes, there is a super easy way to do this… here’s what you do (this applies to the Contacts, Companies and Jobs List Panels):

Let’s use Contacts as an example. Go into Manage Columns with this icon:


Change Rows Per Page to 255 Contacts, then click Save:


Optional but highly recommended: Do a filtered search to narrow down your List Panel (like below). Check out this post on filtered searches.


On the left, click the checkboxes of each record you want to add the tags to.  You can select all with the top-left checkbox, and then deselect the records you don’t want one-by-one.


At the bottom of the List Panel, there are icons… choose the the fourth from the left… the rubber-stamp looking one:


On the page that comes up, add new tags in the big box, then click save:


That’s it!  You can see that you can easily remove tags from Contacts, too.


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