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The Job Search Program to Kill Analysis Paralysis

November 25th, 2019

JibberJobber Analysis ParalysisLast week I was on a call with very talented and accomplished executive, asking for more information about the Job Search Program. As we were talking we got on the topic of analysis paralysis, and she asked if the Job Search Program helped with analysis paralysis.

Yes, absolutely. 

Why? Because the Job Search Program is all about doing the three most important things today, and then reporting back on it by the end of the day. And tomorrow, you do the three most important things for tomorrow and report back. And you do that day after day after day.

This program is not a recital of any given job search or networking book.

It is implementing the stuff you do in a successful job search.

In my job search I realized that I could read all of the books and ebooks and articles and blog posts and listen to podcasts and take courses to become an expert in the job search (and networking and interviewing, etc.).

But I didn’t want to become an expert. I wanted a freaking job!

The Job Search Program is all about getting results. Studying this stuff, unless you want to enter the careers professions (resume writer, coach or counselor, etc.) will likely lead to analysis paralysis. How long should you take to figure out what you want to be when you grow up? A few chapters worth of reading might lead you to think you need to spend a month on that before you can do anything else. But a month without income? Not feasible for most of us.

Look, I’m not bashing on the books. I’m definitely not bashing on the knowledge. But if you are struggling with analysis paralysis, I invite you to take a leap of courage and say “I’m going to do something TODAY. Even if I’m not sure how to do it!”

Better yet, sign up for the Job Search Program (right now it is only $197) and I will give you THREE things to do every single day. I’ll ask you, at the end of the day, if you have done them. If you want to be stuck in paralysis the rest of the day, fine. But at least get my three things done today.

If you mess up, and don’t do it, then do the three things tomorrow. But don’t get stuck thinking, wondering, analyzing, comparing. DO SOMETHING. Better yet, do the right thing(s).

That is exactly what the Job Search Program is.

Ready to get results? Click here to start.

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The Job Search Program to Find Consulting Gigs?

November 22nd, 2019

On LinkedIn I got this question from Hugi:

“Can we use it to find consulting gigs?”

I’m guessing Hugi is asking if he can use the Job Search Program to find consulting gigs. My answer, of course, is:

Yes, absolutely yes!

Not that I think this program is the answer to every question, but what is a consulting gig? It is a mini-job.

JibberJobber Consulting Gigs

How do you get a consulting gig? Well, you might find out about it through a posting. Or through a network contact.

How can you proactively find out about consulting gigs? By having the right conversations with the right people.

Which is exactly what the Job Search Program is designed to do. I help you:

Have the right conversations with the right people.

The job search program uses the time-tested and proven tactic that every job seeker should use: the informational interview. Instead of just teaching you what an informational interview is, and then leaving you on your own, I walk with you for at least six weeks as you invite people, have the informational interviews, follow-up with them, and get more informational interviews (or, more of the right conversations with more of the right people) through referrals.

Networking. Accountability. Follow-up. All the normal high impact job search stuff. With my Job Search Program I help you, day-by-day, make progress in the right direction.

Whether you are just out of school, or looking for a mid-level job, or looking for an executive role, this program can help you have the right conversations with the right people. Not by giving you hours of instruction and a pat on the back… but with a systematic program that YOU CAN DO.

Is this for a contractor looking for gigs? Yes, it definitely is.

 

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Depression Sucks: Darkness in the Job Search (Tips From the Arctic)

November 18th, 2019

JibberJobber Depression Arctic Darkness

Depression clouds thinking. Depression can cloud everything. My most-commented on post was, I thought, a throw-away that no one would comment on.

But depression is too real, and the post connected with people. Check out the post, and the comments, here.

I live in a valley surrounded by mountains. Sounds charming, but there’s way too many people who live here to make it as charming as a Hallmark setting. Instead, and unfortunately, the mountain/valley arrangement gives us what they call an “inversion,” where we get air trapped over our valley for a while. When I say “air,” think dark, yucky pollution.

Winter here is an issue. It can be dark, gray, cold, unwelcoming, and then you have the inversion. Seasonal depression… that’s what they call it.

I think some people get career seasonal depression. I did, when I was in my job search (exhibit A). Many people I talk to are discouraged and depressed, anxious and on-edge. It just comes with the circumstances. I continue to look for anything to help myself and others who tend to go down that path, and was really quite interested in this article on Fast Company titled

I live in 24 hours of darkness each winter. Here’s how I stay sane

Please take the four minutes they say it will take to read this article. I think the entire article is fascinating.. Below the article are related links… explore those, too. I’ll list the five things the author lists to do, but please read the entire article for context. I don’t want you to brush over this list and think it’s a good idea… I want you to internalize the ideas.

Whether you live in the Arctic and won’t see the sun for a while or you live in sunny Florida and see the sun as much as you want, if you are in a job search you might be in your own darkness. These tips can be a part of your remedy.

  1. Keep a routine. Just make sure that what you have in your routine is actually working. Ditch the tactics that aren’t getting you anywhere.
  2. Plan excuses to be social. Job clubs, anyone??
  3. Opt for a technical solution. I might suggest, for job seekers, turn this around and opt for a non-technical solution – that is, TALK TO (MORE) PEOPLE!!
  4. Find things to look forward to. This is why, in my Job Search Program, I talk about vision so much. You will land a job, you won’t be unemployed forever.
  5. Don’t fight the darkness. Recognize that the job search sucks, and accept it, but don’t accept defeat. Know your enemy, as Sun Tzu would say.

Here’s the article:

Fast Company Depression

 

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Favorite Friday: The Job Journal and Mini Stories

November 15th, 2019

JibberJobber Job Journal

I was looking for some old posts about mini stories but didn’t find what I was looking for. I thought I’ve blogged dozens of times about them… alas, apparently I haven’t.

But I did find this gem… and it’s a two-fer-one. I get to talk about the power of mini stories and the JibberJobber feature we call the job journal. Each of these are important in your career management, networking, and career management! Take a walk down memory lane and visit this 2014 post:

What is the Job Journal?

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Favorite Friday: Ten Dick Bolles Facts

November 8th, 2019

Dick Bolles Parachute

I think I say the name “Dick Bolles” at least once a day. He had a profound impact on me and my thinking.

Dick passed away in March of 2017. About a week later I wrote this:

Ten Dick Bolles Facts

Enjoy some of my memories of a man who was bigger than life and helped many millions of people.

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PMI Certification Prep: PMP (Project Manager) and PgMP (Program Manager) on Pluralsight

November 6th, 2019

“But Jason, I’m not in tech!”

Oh yeah? What industry today doesn’t have tech?

And what career path would not benefit from tech-related certifications?

Jeremy Jarrell PluralsightCheck out the Pluralsight learning path titled Program Management Professional – PMI-PgMP® Exam Prep. There are six courses by Jeremy Jarrell, who teaches you how to prepare for the PMI Program Management Professional certification. You can actually get this prep for Pluralsight’s low $299/year price… considerably lower than taking a year of university classes. I know having a PMI certification specializing in program management would be helpful for me to land a program manager job!

You think project management is cooler than program management?

casey-ayers-pluralsightPerhaps it is… for you. Why don’t you go over to Casey Ayers‘ learning path titled Project Management Professional – PMI-PMP® Exam Prep, which has FOURTEEN (14)!! courses to prep you to become a certified project management professional. Think that won’t open some career doors? Holy cow. Again, the super low price of Pluralsight to get you PMP exam prep blows my mind.

Invest in yourself. Invest in your education. These are two great learning paths that easily justify the price of a full year membership on Pluralsight (right now it’s only $299/year). In addition to those learning paths you get access to EVERYTHING on Pluralsight. Crazy.

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Pluralsight’s “Upgrading Your Technology Career” Learning Path

November 5th, 2019

PluralsightPluralsight has designed “learning paths” to help you know what courses you should watch in order to achieve a certain objective. Many of the learning paths are geared towards learning specific programming languages, and are really cool because you get an awesome amount of breadth and depth for that language from multiple authors (which means you get different perspectives).

About the “Upgrading Your Technology Career” learning path: 12 authors with lots and lots of courses to help you become better in the workplace. Pluralsight does an unparalleled job in helping you become a better technologist… and these courses are designed to help you have a fulfilling career because of your soft skills and professional development.  Here are the courses:

Starting a Technology Career

Learning Technology in the Information Age    Dan Appleman

Onboard Yourself: What to Do After You Land Your Dream Job    Jason Alba

How to Be a Great Mentee: Get More Out of Mentoring    Jason Alba

How to Stay Abreast in the Ever-changing World of Tech     Doru Catana

Maintaining Your Technology Career

Working on a Team    Jason Alba

Productivity Tips for the Busy Tech Professional    Richard Seroter

Conflict Resolution in the Workplace    Stephen Haunts

Making Work from Home Work for You    Kevin Murray

Working and Communicating with Different Personalities    Jason Alba

Time Management in a World of Interruptions    Boris Hristov

Prioritizing Tasks and Managing Time for Greater Productivity    Jason Alba

Time Management for Technical Professionals  Doru Catana

Keeping up with Technology    Dan Appleman

The Future of Technology Careers    Dan Appleman

Growing Your Technology Career

How to Be a Great Mentor: Get More out of Mentoring     Jason Alba

How to Speak to Business Leaders     Jason Alba

Moving from Technical Professional to Management    Shelley Benhoff

Management 101     Jason Alba

Leadership: Getting Started     Jason Alba

Introduction to Leadership and Management for Developers    Dan Appleman

Creating and Leading Effective Teams for Managers     Jason Alba

Management Strategies that will Increase Productivity Today     Jay McFarland

Owning Your Technology Career

Developing a Killer Personal Brand     Jason Alba

Informational Interviews     Jason Alba

Relationship Management and Tracking for Your Career     Jason Alba

Turning the Corporate Ladder into an Escalator       Jay McFarland

Change It Up!      Rob Conery

How to Get Your Next Promotion     Jason Alba

Career Management 2.0      Jason Alba

Building and Managing Your Career Plan     Jason Alba

Play by Play: Crafting a Brand for Growth and Prosperity Lars KlintTroy Hunt/

Career and Survival Strategies for Software Developers    Dan Appleman

The Dark Side of Technology Careers     Dan Appleman

That is A LOT of viewing…. pick and choose what is best for you right now, and what will help you get more fulfillment and maybe that next promotion at work.

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Favorite Friday: 10 Reasons to Frequent Job Clubs

November 1st, 2019

JibberJobber Job Club

The first time in my job search (in 2006) I drove to a job club I kind of didn’t have the address with me. I thought I knew where I was going but I ended up driving around a neighborhood for about 20 minutes then threw in the towel and just went home.

Well, at least I tried.

Since then I’ve spoken over a hundred times at job clubs around the U.S. I’m a huge proponent of job clubs. Going changed everything for me. It was the first time since I got laid off that I didn’t feel 100% alone. I also saw other accomplished professionals who were unemployed… just like me. Maybe I wasn’t a complete and utter failure.  I learned plenty at those job clubs, but I found hope and friendship.

Check out this post I wrote in 2017:

10 Reasons to Frequent Job Clubs

 

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Slow is Fast, Even in the Job Search #ScaryConcept

October 31st, 2019

By the time I went to Bamboo last February (almost two years ago!) I had spent the last 12 years as an entrepreneur. Two ways I describe being an entrepreneur:

You eat what you kill.

This means that if you don’t make a sale, you don’t eat. Very, very different than drawing a paycheck. The “eat what you kill” mentally creates a sense of urgency that you don’t usually see walking down corporate hallways where people have salaries, insurance, benefits, and some semblance of security.

JibberJobber Eat What You Kill

Unemployed.

My friend Marc says that every day he wakes up unemployed, and has to go find work. He’s been an entrepreneur forever. I think this is a really healthy way of looking at it (he’s in the services business). Again, sense of urgency mindset.

JibberJobber Sense of Urgency

I then went into a bureaucratic organization. Not to bash on Bamboo… every organization has bureaucracy. But I went from hurry hurry hurry to slow down, slow down, it will be okay.

I remember watching the sales floor HUSTLE, always busy, and see their stats posted (and rising) on monitors throughout the day. I could just sit there and watch for hours (although I never did). I thought that a lot of the “slow down” mentality was funded by those hustlers on the floor. And in the ecosystem of a healthy company, that makes a lot of sense. Have people who are bringing in new business while you have strategists steering the ship and people carrying out plans in the background. Two seemingly disjointed operations happening at the same time, both of which have a profound impact on the other.

It was beautiful, really.

But to the point of this post. I went from entrepreneur mindset to hearing almost daily “slow is fast, fast is slow.” This, they said, came from Special Forces, and it meant to slow down, do things right, and you wouldn’t have to spend time cleaning up messes later. You could make better progress over time by going slow and purposeful than if you just throw a bunch of spaghetti on the wall and see what sticks.

But from my previous 12 years it was really frustrating to “go slow.”

When I created the Job Search Program I chose six weeks as the length of the self-guided coaching “course.” I’m still not sure what to call it (maybe that’s why I said “program”)… but six weeks feels awful slow to me (as a job seeker). Who wants to sit around for six weeks until stuff happens?

Granted, if you are doing the program you should start to see results in week one or two. Traction, conversations, introductions, referrals, etc. You are likely not going to notice that YOU are getting BETTER at these conversations… but that will happen, too.

Slowly.

I would argue that spending time doing your job search strategically, and doing the right things at the right times, is better than spending two to ten hours on job boards frantically applying for whatever you think might work for you.

Here’s the message I want you to walk away with: the results you might see (or not see) probably feel excruciatingly painful. Too slow. But trust the process, trust the system (as long as they are principled) and work the system. Results should come.

My job search was slow but my system was completely flawed. Get the right system, work it, and you should see results.

Need a system? Check out the Job Search Program. It uses informational interviews + accountability + follow-up to help you have the right conversations with the right people.

Job Search Program Effective Job Search

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STOP Handing Out Resumes In Informational Interviews

October 30th, 2019

JibberJobber Informational Interview Nervous

As part of the Job Search Program I talk a lot about the rights and wrongs of informational interviews. A major mistake people make is giving out a resume at the end (or at any time) of an informational interview.

Why is this a mistake? Aren’t you open to getting hired?

Yes, of course! But in my version of an informational interview you are having a peer-to-peer, colleague-to-colleague conversation with the other person. The minute you become a job seeker you change the dynamics of the relationship. They are in a position to help, you are in a position of hurt.

I’m not saying it’s bad or shameful to be a job seeker. Nor am I saying you need to hide it.

But for this 20 or 30 minutes I want you to remember who you are… a professional project manager, or analyst, or whatever you are. NOT just an unemployed person.

Even though you are not currently working you can still talk with expertise and authority about your field. You have expertise and experience and can have a great conversation. Don’t forget that.

Have a great conversation and then immediately hand them a resume and you go from expert and passionate to needy and desperate.

JibberJobber Informational Interview Resume

Maybe you are needy and desperate… but you don’t need to wear that on your sleeve.

So what do you do? Here’s how you have your cake and eat it too:

If they ask for your resume simply say “oh yeah, I’ll shoot that to you when I get back to my computer.”

This shows them that indeed you are there to have a really good conversation with them, not to use them and their position to try to get your resume in front of HR.

If they don’t ask for your resume, follow-up in an email about your meeting. I would NOT send a resume then… but continue the conversation, following-up on referrals, and maybe send a link to an article relevant to our conversation.

Can you talk about your job search? Sure. Can you ask about openings they know about? Sure. But don’t push a resume to them right away. There will be a perfect time for that, and it’s not at the very beginning of your conversation.

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