Education Career Services

June 15, 2010

Social Media Intoxication: enough all ready!

I finally have a few minutes to reflect about the day and how to maneuver along this crazy highway called electronic social networking. Problem is, the only thing I can think of is: I need to check my LinkedIn, Twitter, Face Book, and five other accounts just in case…

There are benefits of networking but where is the point of diminishing return? Or is there such a concept in this arena?

How much time and energy do you spend texting, twitting, linking, and face booking? If we accumulated the amount of time spent (or should I have said wasted) peering into monitors and punching keys over a full week period, do you think the minutes (okay, I should have said hours) would be staggering and perhaps eye-popping? Being a rookie with such technology, I averaged the following throughout a full week:

* LinkedIn, logged in on the hour and spent an average of eight minutes on the site each time
* Responded to three peer questions on LinkedIn (total time spent for each ten minutes)
* Twitted and read those twitting articles several times a day (I am not a huge Twitterer so my time was limited to personal knowledge—no doubt many out there spend hours Twitting each day)
* Face Book was checked and browsed four to five times daily
* Blogging took a great deal of time over the week; with three active blogs to keep up, I seem to be running in a circle

Add daily interruptions and now I must ask, how does any real work get done? Running several publishing, writing, and human capital firms is a full-time (70 hour week) job—heck, no wonder my hair is sprouting more salt and less pepper! Maybe it’s time to kick back and rethink what we do during the day?

Is the social/media craze worth the sacrifice? At what point is enough too much and at what point are we walking around with our eyes glued to a networking device—never looking up to see if the sky is falling or if there even was a sky?

I don’t know how far this networking evolution will take civilization but I am beginning to worry about the negative effects of social media intoxication. Thus far, I’ve had the pleasure to see the following:

* Employees forgetting to work but not forgetting to network
* Students texting instead of taking notes / while an instructor I disallowed laptops, phones, and any other electronic medium in the classroom
* Less original work being performed and being submitted (or was I imagining)
* Family members not connecting face to face, even at restaurants while sitting at the same table (go figure)
* Drivers texting while operating their vehicle
* An over all decrease of interviewing and real social skills

Don’t know about you but I believe social media networking does have a darker side associated with it. For starters, think I’ll limit the time spent on electronic toys and insist those sitting at the dinner table with me pay more attention to the people sitting at the table. Perhaps each day enjoy simplicity, noise-free simplicity…

So what if I miss a Tweet or am not the first to see a photo on Face Book… does it really matter?

dhuffman, MA, CEIP, CPRW, CPCC
Education Career Services/Career Services International
dhuffman@careersi.com

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May 6, 2010

The Hidden Job Market for the New Energy Economy

What is a green job?

According to the UN Environment Program, a green job is “…work in agricultural, manufacturing, R&D, administrative, and service activities that contribute to restoring environmental quality.  Specifically, this includes jobs that protect ecosystems and biodiversity, reduce energy and water consumption, decarbonize the economy, and minimize pollution.”

A month ago, we discussed the explosive growth and income-generating potential green jobs have to offer despite a volatile economy.  We also explored the process of transitioning from a traditional corporate role to a position driven by social responsibility and environmental activism.  Now, the question remains, how does one find a green job?

The traditional method is to explore popular, online job boards.  There are the mainstream job boards such as CareerBuilder, Monster, and Simply Hired.  However, you are not going to find a plethora of green collar positions upon such general job boards.  It would benefit you to consider cleantech job boards for opportunities related to environmental responsibility.  TreeHugger’s Job Board and greenjobsearch.org are more fruitful options for a targeted search.  In addition, there are job boards focused on specific areas within the green industry, such as Jobs in the Wind from the American Wind Energy Association.

However, employers may not advertise a job opportunity with an online job board for multiple reasons.  The company of your dreams may be a startup and not possess an HR department.  They cannot handle the volume of response acquired from postings on CareerBuilder.com or other broad-based postings.  Therefore, other strategies to hunt for green jobs arise.  Consider the possibilities within the hidden green job market:

1) Networking

Networking is a crucial skill any graduate entering the job market or seasoned professional can possess.  How else will you meet the contacts necessary to acquire a new position in the cleantech industry? Attend green events such as EcoTuesday, GreenDrinks, Green Festivals, or events sponsored by the American Solar Energy Society. 

For green networking tips, visit http://www.planetfriendly.net/networkingtips.html

2) Contact the companies directly

Many sustainable energy companies publish job listings on their website, as opposed to external recruitment for candidates.  To gain access to these opportunities, candidates should identify enterprises they would be interested in working for.  Tactics to review and assess prospective companies include:

* Going to green memberships to review their lists of relevant employers.  Examples incorporate the American Solar Energy Society, American Wind Energy Association, Geothermal Energy Association, Sustainable Buildings Industry Council, and the Electric Auto Association.
* Review the exhibitor/presenter list at industry conferences.  For instance, there were 400+ organizations at a recent Intersolar conference sponsored by the American Solar Energy Society.
* Read as many green publications as possible, such as Global Green USA. Green Career journals/magazines will have multifarious news articles highlighting prospective employers.
* Go to the National Green Pages to discover a sustainable energy business directory.

3) Academic Institutions

Academic institutions should offer an encyclopedic array of job-related resources for colleges and students, including job fairs and listings.  In response to the growing demand for green jobs, Columbia University and Stanford University are holding Energy and Environmental Career Fairs in the fall.  The University of Illinois and University of Minnesota also are holding sustainable energy career fairs.  Most importantly, academic institutions are a quintessential place to engage in networking.

4) Recruiters

In response to the gigantic growth arising in green jobs, recruiters have begun to specialize in careers involving sustainability.  Examples of green recruiters include The Green Recruiter, Lotus Partners, Bright Green Talent, and Commongood Careers.

5) Membership Organizations

Industry associations and other membership-oriented organizations generate job postings along with their member services.  For instance, Net Impact, a national organization focusing on actualizing business for social justice, offers career services and an annual green career expo.

6) Online Social Media

Company representatives (including hiring managers) often utilize social media to perform their own outreach initiatives for prospective candidates.  For instance, the Green Jobs and Career Network group on LinkedIn provides job postings in locations worldwide.

7) E-Mail Lists

E-mail lists for sustainable energy jobs are also an excellent method of penetrating the hidden job market.  Most of these are free for job seekers to join, including EnviJobs, Green Job List, and YNPN.

Despite the recession, the American job market is growing fast for green careers.  According to the American Solar Energy Society’s green jobs report, “…green industries already generate 9 million jobs in the U.S., and with appropriate public policy, could grow to 40 million jobs by 2030.”  In a recent NY Times article noted, “…56,000 newly trained workers and 14,000 project managers are needed to realize our current administration’s one-year goals for energy efficiency alone.”

So, now go out there and save our Mother Earth! Green careers lead to prosperity and job security.  You will also be strengthening and healing both our economy and planet.

Presented by Victoria Andrew, professional writer for Career Services International

April 6, 2010

How to Approach a Green Transition

Submitted by Green Specialist Victoria Andrew…

Both the economy and our environment are in state of crisis.  According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, 9.8% of the labor force is unemployed.  The Environmental Defense Fund reports the carbon dioxide level is higher today that it has been in measurable history, which is 2.1 million years.  Glaciers are melting, and coastal wetlands will soon vanish will the rising sea level.

Despite the earth and our economy being in danger, good news is on the horizon.  Jobs in the sustainable energy field are poised for explosive growth.  Currently, the demand for renewable energy is opening more than 9 million jobs and $10 billion in revenue in United States.

Although penetrating the green collar industry is highly similar to any career transition, there are a few differences to consider:

* Do not be intimidated.  No one is an expert in green collar jobs.
“Don’t worry about starting at the bottom!  You’re never going to have another opportunity in your career where the bottom is so close to the top.  Someone with three years of biofuel experience is already a foremost expert in the country,” states Dawn Dzurilla, President of Gaia Human Capital Consultants

* Embrace learning with passion!
We are on the verge of an exhilarating renaissance in product development and innovation.  For every new career, such as a wind turbine fabricator or photovoltaic engineer, there are 10 to 12 jobs automatically created to support it.  Instead of allowing anxiety over uncharted territory to sabotage your interests, seize this opportunity to learn as much as possible on new and emerging developments in sustainable energy.  Keep yourself informed with cutting-edge websites, such as http://www.greenjobs.com

* Pursue grassroots organizations instead of Fortune 500 businesses.
Acceleration in your green career growth is catalyzed by investing in companies that take new energy initiatives seriously, as opposed to just having a little green on the side.  According to Michael Eckhart, President of ACORE, “There’s a high probability that the winners are going to be companies no one has heard of so far, such as Better Place.  They are the ones that will be exploding within the next five to ten years.”

* Take the green temperature of your targeted company.
 Pay close attention to any hiring green company to confirm if their commitment is pursued with 100% integrity.  If the Green Expert is reporting to the CSR instead of the CFO, then that is not the company for you.  Be direct, and ask penetrating questions on the company’s green priorities.  Assess their view of green-washing rules, and discover how they plan to brand themselves as a green washer.  Pursue further research on your company’s green level by checking the State of Green Business Report on GreenBiz.com: www.stateofgreenbusiness.com

Job seekers from every segment of society are anxious to transfer their skills to the renewable energy industry in order to benefit from the infusion of capital, effort, and opportunity.  An investment in your career and our mother earth holds the promise of a better tomorrow.

Danny Huffman, MA, CEIP, CPCC, CPRW
Owner, Author, Publisher
Career Services International, www.careersi.com
Education Career Services, www.educationcs.com
LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/in/dannyhuffman
Creator, The Huffman Report, www.westorlandonews.com

March 17, 2010

Did I REALLY Post That?

No doubt we’ve heard it over and over again… social media/networking is overtaking the world and just about every aspect of life, including job searching and career management.  So, with this common truth, what’s the latest?

According to an AIRS Sourcing Report dated February 2010, you may be amazed at the prevalence permeating (I have never used those two words together in my life so if it makes no sense, get over it) the social media network.  For example:

2010 Social Media Stats Review:

* Facebook has been in business 6 years (last month), and now has 400,000,000 members
* 50% of Facebook users log on daily (are you one of them—hmm, if 50% log on daily, that means 200,000,000 users log on daily—this is for the match challenged out there)
* 65 million Facebook users access the site with mobile devices (still a respectful number by any stretch)
* LinkedIn has 11 million users across Europe
* India is the fastest growing country using LinkedIn, with more than 3 million users
* LinkedIn is offered in 4 different languages, while Facebook is offered in 70 languages
*
Twitter now has 75 million profiles
* In December 2009, 17% of Twitter users tweeted, equating to roughly 10 to15 million users joining the conversation

Enough of the numbers and what does it mean to you? First of all, for those not venturing into the social media world, you are at a disadvantage as professional exposure can be an added value when searching for a job.  Unfortunately, there may be price to pay if you are tangled into the electronic social network.  For example, once an entry is written and published or an image is posted, there is no turning back. For those hitting Spring Break hard and fast, beware your behavior may be recorded for the world to see… and as the trend continues, the world WILL see. 

While on an off-beat strum, if you’re looking for a site to show off your creative side, one of my former college students developed “A Community for All Artists” and is located at http://artists-square.com.  I encourage you to check it out.  Okay, getting back on track…

. and bringing me to another point, employers ARE searching potential candidates on the Internet.  I’ll go ahead and make my position clear: error in the way of conservative caution and DO NOT post, publish, or take pictures your parents (or potential employer) would not be proud of.  Just think about Phelps and the stir he created due to posted pictures. 

With millions searching, seizing, and spying, be careful,

Danny Huffman, MA, CEIP, CPCC, CPRW
Owner, Author, Publisher
Career Services International
Education Career Services
dhuffman@careersi.com
www.linkedin.com/in/dannyhuffman

March 8, 2010

Résumés of a Different Stripe

Professional documents are not a one-size fit all proposition.  Depending on the goal, distribution strategy, and intended reader, you will require different résumés.  Let’s look at three:

Broadcast Résumé
If your strategy is to tap into the unadvertised job market (getting to a hiring manager before they post a position), you need a streamlined, value-centric résumé promoting yourself as the solution to a problem.  The goal is to get an interview or a call that can be transformed into an interview.  Very effective as a strategy, you aren’t competing with thousands of applicants, BUT it is a numbers game and you’ll need to broadcast mail hundreds, if not thousands, of résumés to get a good response.  Requires a financial investment of stamps, paper, envelopes, and probably professional writing, but ultimately, this is the most cost effective option.

Recruiter Résumé
Because the recruiter is putting your résumé in the hands of the employer, the goal is different.  While the above Broadcast Résumé leans heavily on the “Wow” factor, the recruiter résumé is heavy in detail.  The hiring manager is a captive audience with some degree of confidence that the recruiter isn’t wasting his time.  The Broadcast Résumé gets 12 seconds or so to make an impression; here, the recruiter is making that first impression.  Recruiter Résumés can be two or three pages long with no concerns about masking obstacles like age.  This option is VERY EXPENSIVE.  The recruiter may tell you “the hiring company pays my fee,” but the company is taking the 20% fee out of YOUR salary (up to $20,000!).  You keep paying for years because your raises will be based off the impacted salary, not what they would have paid you.  The recruiter’s goal is to make a fee, not find you a job; to do so they’ll place their easiest-fit client, not necessarily their best: “Hmmm, seems a bit old,” “You’re right, let me show you this other candidate.”

Job Posting Response Résumé
Applying for jobs online requires a customized résumé heavy on specific key words.  Key words are important to all résumés but here they have to be cherry picked from the posting and liberally used in the résumé.  Your résumé’s first goal is to make it through the screening software.  From there, a person will read yours and the thousand other applicant’s résumés, so it needs to be specific but unique.  Delivering value with tight content is as important here as in the Marketing Résumé.  And like the Broadcast Résumé, this is a numbers game; few applicants seem to know this, though, thinking applying to specific jobs is effective.  Instead, it takes many time-consuming tries (you should be customizing the résumé each time) and results in massive lost-wages.

Each of these résumés should be written professionally and we’re not advocating dismissing any of these strategies.  Being in the career management business for many years, if you would like to discuss strategies, please give us a shout.

Until then, never stop…

The above post was submitted by Robert Swanson, certified writer and manager at Education Career Services.

Danny Huffman, MA, CEIP, CPCC, CPRW
Owner, Author, Publisher
Career Services International
Education Career Services
dhuffman@careersi.com
www.linkedin.com/in/dannyhuffman
407-206-5883 (direct line)
866-794-3337 ext 110

March 4, 2010

Social Media Overrunning YOUR World?

Yesterday I spoke to a Data Storage Sales Executive seeking transition from Environmental Services back to Open Storage Sales. One of the questions during our conversation regarded the prevalence and rapid growth of the Social Media stage.  Given my knack to know more and deliver the goods to an eager (and hungry) following, I did my own diligence on the matter. The statistics may surprise you.

Needless to say, if you thought social/media networking made an impact over the past few years, hold on while I recap the deal from the Career Management Alliance (specifically from AIRS Sourcing Report, February 2010).  On this note…

* Facebook has been in business six years in February, and has 400,000,000 members (if the zeros got in the way, the number is 400 million—wonder how long it will be until the number of people in Facebook is a greater percentage than the worlds population)
* 50% of Facebook users log on daily
* 65 million Facebook users access the site with mobile devices (I am still trying to figure out how to take a picture on my phone much less text…)
* LinkedIn has 11 million users across Europe
* India is the fastest growing country using LinkedIn, with more than 3 million users
* LinkedIn is offered in 4 different languages, while Facebook is offered in 70 languages
* Twitter has 75 million profiles
* In December 2009, 17% of Twitter users tweeted,

The next time you think about career networking, think about the power of the social/media world.  Then again, one thing I want to make clear, do NOT rely solely on this medium for career support.  As I closed out the conversation this morning, I made it clear an objective approach to material development and an assertive approach to spreading the word of value should be considered. 

In the submissions to come, we will continue reviewing multiple avenues guiding YOUR career success.  In the interim, let me know of any challenges you would like examined.

Danny Huffman, MA, CEIP, CPCC, CPRW
Owner, Author, Publisher
Career Services International
Education Career Services
dhuffman@careersi.com
www.linkedin.com/in/dannyhuffman
407-206-5883 (direct line)
866-794-3337 ext 110

February 5, 2010

Super Bowl at what career cost?

Career management is not always about finding jobs, it’s also about examining potential factors causing unemployment and/or economic difficulties.  With this said, what gives with the topic?  Surely the game is about getting the gang together, having fun, and doing what our great ancestors (going all the way back to the land time forgot) did as they beat their chests after tackling a wild hog and NOT about spending a ridiculous amount of money without thought of who is really paying the bill.

Good news, the days of beating chests are back (at least for one long and expensive weekend).  With me so far?  Good.

This weekend, as you watch the Super Bowl and check out those commercials that may be the time to ask “who is really paying for the $2.5 million to $3 million 30-second price tag.  That’s not even including production, pre-marketing, graphics, and research costs, etc.  What affect does a super-buck blow-out have on my career and who is going to pay the bloated price for a bag of chips simply because a hottie pushes the delight?  Let’s take a pure economic approach to this for a minute and find out who loses and who wins:

Losers:
1. General laborers feel the most pain in the form of lower wages and, in many cases, layoffs; companies are in business to make money and low-bearing fruit is ALWAYS the first to go.  For general laborers out there, no disrespect intended.
2. The average consumer is not able to purchase more than the bare minimum; meaning the price is above their personal equilibrium and most are barely balancing.  With fewer consumers working or working at low wages, the cost of the product must then increase to cover the exploding wages of the company power elite.

To summarize: the average person is paying the tab while our career prospects are being ignored for the sake of juicing the pocket of the few. 

Think about the money being spent for our brief entertainment.  Then think how Monday morning will find many still unemployed, underemployed, or unsatisfied with their job. 

Winners:
1. Dr. Pepper’s recruitment of KISS in full armor and makeup… Gene Simmons has already been pushing the soda with their “Calling Dr. Love” ads.
2. CareerBuilder’s contest to award a $100,000 prize to those creating the most memorable commercial (truth be known, they aren’t bad as far as commercials go).

3. Monster’s promotion to find a “NFL Director of Fandemonium.”  The ultimate winner will receive $100,000 and will be involved in various NFL activities including being on the field for the coin toss ceremony.

I tip my hat to FedEx, General Motors, and Pepsi who opted out of this years event; perhaps they have their eyes on employee development and keeping prices to a reasonable level.

Let’s loop back to the job search and tie it back in to the Super Bowl (after all, I have some ribs needing to be marinated).  A lesson can be expressed as the philosophy used in consumer marketing can also be adopted into your career search.  There’s a reason commercials are brief (other than the expense). 

To be effective, an advertisement, you being the product, has less than 20 seconds to get the decision-maker to contact you based on your commercial (resume).  Maximizing time management, the top third must convey value, detailing how you will make or save money based on your past performances. 

Then again, if I could spend $3 million for a 30-second commercial, I would just pay someone to write my resume for me while I go out chasing a wild hog… and this is coming from a certified resume writer!

Enjoy the game,

Danny Huffman, MA, CEIP, CPCC, CPRW
Owner, Author, Publisher
Career Services International
Education Career Services
dhuffman@careersi.com
www.linkedin.com/in/dannyhuffman
407-206-5883 (direct line)
866-794-3337 ext 110

January 22, 2010

Don’t Make Me Think!

Submitted by Robert Swanson,
Author, editor
Education Career Services

Steve Krug’s book on optimizing web page usability/readability titled Don’t Make Me Think has much to say to would-be résumé writers as well, though Don’t Make Me Synthesize might be a better title for such a book.

Too many résumés throw out only what the candidate has done; hoping the hiring manager will figure out what the candidate can therefore do for them.  Such a passive résumé forces the reader to synthesize, which is more work than the reader wants to do.  YOU need to be the active component, not the reader.

Hiring managers have problems and goals or they wouldn’t be hiring.  The candidate who can anticipate the employer’s needs and pre-synthesize their résumé to provide solutions wins the interview.  How is this done?  Simple.

Begin with the company’s needs you can fulfill.  Imagine I own a pizzeria and I’m looking for help.  Clearly I’d want someone with specific pizza skills, but if you can show me you have transferrable skills, I’ll want to talk to you.  You might guess I need bakery, food preparation, health/safety, and cashier skills.  If a résumé tells me you’ve worked at McDonald’s “responsible for customer service, hamburger assembly, and fryer duty” I don’t know if you were any good at it!  After all, you aren’t doing it anymore and that could imply you were fired for incompetence.

Instead, use active language, and bring solutions to the top where I’m sure to see them, and generalize to fit my needs:

  • Prepared and assembled food products in a rapid-paced environment in accordance to FDA and OSHA regulations.
  • Programmed and operated Point of Sales (POS) System during lunch and dinner rushes; recognized for consistently delivering no shortages or overages.

These two bullet points alone would make me call this person.  Familiarity with government regulations, can program a POS system, and handles cash and rushes well?  I don’t have to guess or figure out if this candidate has the skills I’m looking for, they’re placed right where I’ll see them.  By anticipating my needs, the candidate shows intelligence and forethought.

What solutions do you offer a company?

Thank you Robert, you’re always on target!  If you have any questions or comments, don’t be shy!

Danny Huffman, MA, CEIP, CPCC, CPRW
Owner, Author, Publisher
Career Services International
Education Career Services
dhuffman@careersi.com
www.linkedin.com/in/dannyhuffman
407-206-5883 (direct line)
866-794-3337 ext 110

January 11, 2010

“Bio” is Short for “Biography” So Keep It Short!

Robert Swanson,
author, editor, Career Services International and Education Career Services

You’ve been tasked to write a bio for inclusion on a company website.  Don’t panic!  Writing your bio, like any web copy, is all about writing and cutting, and cutting some more.

People don’t read bios.  They start to read and then realize they really don’t care.  With that in mind, brevity is mandatory.  You’re tempted to start with where you were born.  Deny that temptation.  A bio is not about you, it’s about what you offer the reader.

Writing in third person, start with your name (that’s a no-brainer, right? You’d be amazed how many bios omit that vital information).  Establish value and scope right up front.  Use active verbs and include an image for the reader to hang onto.  Mine includes the line “…stitched together by the golden thread of writing…” and I also mention the Space Needle even though I worked there 25 years ago (they don’t need to know that).  For most readers, the Seattle landmark springs to mind.

You’re building a case of value, so consider what’s important to the reader. Finally, wrap it up with a short sentence summarizing what you offer.  The nice thing about bios is if you shift it to first person, it becomes your spoken elevator speech.  My bio is below; how much do you read?

Rob Swanson unites a cross-functional career spanning multiple industries stitched together by the golden thread of writing.  Whether an industrial engineer with Boeing Airplane Company, a retail manager at Seattle’s Space Needle, or an officer with SunTrust Banks, technical writing, instructional design, or copy writing has been integral to each position. 

Following success in these ventures, Rob turned to freelance writing, ghostwriting several books, serving as a marketing consultant, training-video author and director, and lead cover writer for a glossy city magazine.  Holding complimentary certifications in Resume Writing and Adult Learning Methodologies, Rob now leads a talented writing team producing executive portfolios that are highly competitive in today’s market. Gearing content to the needs of hiring managers cross-matched to how adults read, he gives clients a distinct advantage.

No matter your documentary needs, Rob is your go-to writer.

Thank you Robert!  Oddly enough, last week I was commissioned to write four bio’s… perfect timing.

Danny Huffman, MA, CEIP, CPCC, CPRW
Owner, Author, Publisher
Career Services International
Education Career Services
dhuffman@careersi.com
www.linkedin.com/in/dannyhuffman
407-206-5883 (direct line)
866-794-3337 ext 110

January 6, 2010

New Year’s Career Resolutions

By Kimberly Sarmiento

Twenty years ago, I spent New Year’s Eve at a friend’s house watching The Breakfast Club and MTV’s best 100 video’s of the 80s as we said hello to a new decade.

That night, my brilliant friend decided she wanted to give up chocolate her 1990 New Year’s resolution and for some reason that I fail to recall, she convinced me to be her partner in this endeavor.  The only thing more insane than willingly giving up chocolate was her strategy to prevent temptation in the New Year:  Go through as much of a 5-pound box of chocolate as we could handle in one night. 

Admittedly, it worked for about six months for me and about nine months for her.

In the spirit of a new year, new decade, and in the hope of bright new things to come, I give you my top five list of things you should resolve to do for your career development and job search:

  1. Network. Network. Network.  Yes it’s like location in real estate.  The most important thing you can do throughout your career – whether or not you are looking for a new job at the moment – is build and maintain a network of professional contacts.  Hopefully, you kept up with your networking during the holiday season – at office parties, neighborhood gatherings, etc…. but if you didn’t, there is no better time to touch base with someone than the start of a new year.  Send a short note or pick up the phone for a quick call.  Wish them a prosperous start to the year and ask if there is anything exciting on their agenda.  Who knows what exciting new opportunities you may uncover!
  2. Update your resume.  You aren’t looking for a new job?  So what?  Maybe you’ll need a fresh resume for a networking discovery.  Perhaps you’ll want to apply for a new position in your company or ask for a promotion this year.  Having an up-to-date resume is always a good idea and as your look ahead to an exciting new year professionally, it is also the best time to look back and reflect upon your most recent accomplishments and figure out your next goals.
  3. Document accomplishments.  This goes hand-and-hand with updating your resume, but it needs to be stated separately.  Don’t let your achievements for 2009 get away from you.  Even if you don’t create a new resume, make sure you keep a journal of your yearly results so you don’t have trouble quantifying them when you do need fresh new career documents.
  4. Set professional goals.  Even if you aren’t in the market for a new position, we are still in a tough job market.  While I hope it seriously improves in 2010, we need to be ever conscious of our need to contribute to a company’s success and never settle for just doing the job assigned to us.  So examine your position, your company’s needs, and how you can contribute in the New Year.  It will serve you well when the time comes for you to seek a new opportunity and it will likely improve you standing in your current employer’s eyes. 
  5. Learn how to sell yourself.  I find most of my clients – even ones who sell products for a living – have difficulty with process of selling themselves.  More than anything, you career development is dependent on your ability to believe in yourself and sell yourself to a client, business associate, or employer.  Identify your value proposition – what you do well and what makes you a benefit to an organization – and learn to present it comfortably and confidently.

Follow all five resolutions or just pick a couple, but commit yourself to them and you will see your career development improve.  Best wishes for a prosperous professional year in 2010!

Thank you Kimberly for your work and sharing with our members!

Danny Huffman, MA, CEIP, CPCC, CPRW
Owner, Author, Publisher
Career Services International
Education Career Services
dhuffman@careersi.com
www.linkedin.com/in/dannyhuffman
407-206-5883 (direct line)
866-794-3337 ext 110

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