Jan's Blog
Be inspired. It's your career. It's your life.

November 2010
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Made in America
Filed under: Employment
Posted by: site admin @ 1:50 pm

I work with a number of senior-level executives, mid-tier managers, and rank-and-file folks at manufacturers around the country, so this article in the November issue of CFO magazine caught my eye… see what you think of the following stats:

* Between 2000 and 2008, the U.S. global market share of manufactured goods fell from 19% to 14%, while China’s increased from 7% to 17%. During that same period, the value of U.S. manufactured exports increased by 60%.

* The percentage of Americans who said they would encourage their children to pursue a career in manufacturing was 30%.

* U.S. exports exceed U.S. imports in textiles/fabrics (and - not surprisingly - *not* in computers/electronics, chemicals, or paper).

* When asked to evaluate U.S. manufacturing competitiveness on 21 attributes, a majority of Americans said the U.S. is at a disadvantage in 7, all of which had these in common:
  - pay scales/union influence
  - government/tax policies
  - reliability/durability/reputation
  - high commodity/shipping/logistics costs

* When asked whether they were more likely to buy a product labeled “Made in America,” 61% of Americans said yes; this is up 2% in 2010 over 2009.

* In 2009, the median weekly earnings for a manufacturing-sector union member were $800. The median for nonunion workers was $762.

Many economists as well as on-the-street folks alike believe that one of the key ways back from the economic abyss is for Americans to “make something.” Most baby boomers today can cite at least one family member in their parents’ generation who worked for a company that “made something.” Whether its in alternative energy, healthcare, education, or some yet-undiscovered field, we must put our brain trust to work in this country finding short- and long-term solutions to economic independence and viable entrepreneurialism. And our government must simultaneously support such initiatives and ‘get out of the way’ where its intervention is clearly not needed. And, likewise, government must not put mandates that will break the backs of the typical entrepreneur or start-up company. Carpe diem!

– Jan Melnik, MRW, CCM, CPRW - President, Absolute Advantage

Be inspired. It’s your career. It’s your life. 

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What Recruiters Seek in Resumes
Filed under: General
Posted by: site admin @ 9:10 am

Despite the daunting figures from a recent survey, recruiters insist they try to carefully review most, if not all, of the resumes they receive. What’s the main thing that draws a recruiter’s attention? Proof that they can do the job! (And, for those who work with me and/or attend my programs/talks, you know this means the predictors-of-success you embed in your profile *and* the CAR stories that fill your accomplishment-oriented resume!)

A recent survey of human resources managers by CareerBuilder.com revealed that almost half of them typically review up to 25 applications per job, while spending just 30 to 60 seconds looking over each one. Yet some recruiters contend the number of applications they get is dramatically higher with hundreds of candidates vying for each position. Despite the daunting figures, recruiters insist they try to carefully review most, if not all, of the resumes they receive. Sourcing candidates is a high priority and companies don’t want to overlook a qualified applicant, they say.

What catches the eye of a recruiter varies from position to position, but they’re primarily looking for candidates with a proven track record, says David Anderson, HR manager at Irvine, California-based Vision Solutions Inc. “Candidates must show quantifiable results. ‘How?’ is the answer we want to get to,” says Anderson, who adds that he receives at least 100 resumes for every open position.

Technology tools can help ease the process of reviewing scores of resumes. Brenda Rigney, director of talent acquisition at Aritzia, has set up her Outlook inbox to filter and sort resumes. She receives 100 to 200 applications for each associate-level position for Aritzia, a women’s retail fashion brand based in Vancouver, British Columbia.

Anderson says job descriptions should be specific but not overdone. “A lengthy list of requirements can discourage even qualified applicants and extend the application process,” he says.

“Before we even think about sourcing candidates, we sit down with the hiring manager to fill out a detailed job requisition form,” Rigney says. The form requests such information as why the role is needed, desired competencies, and potential future career paths for the successful candidate.

While cover letters may seem unnecessary, recruiters say they still offer relevant insight into the candidate. “Cover letters provide introductions and context,” Accenture’s Campagnino says, adding that he likes a short note demonstrating the candidate’s interest in Accenture.

Once a resume attracts his interest, Mike Spaulding, a corporate recruiter, says he vets candidates online. He checks their Twitter streams and blogs; Rigney looks at candidates’ Tumblr sites, a popular way to post creative portfolios. “Candidates have more opportunities than just their resumes to get in front of recruiters,” Spaulding says.

Source: http://tinyurl.com/37nf2lu and Career Management Alliance weekly digest

– Jan Melnik, MRW, CCM, CPRW - President, Absolute Advantage

Be inspired. It’s your career. It’s your life.

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Find-A-Career & Networking Strategies
Filed under: Job Search, Networking, Resume
Posted by: site admin @ 2:30 pm

On Wednesday, Nov. 3, I’ll be presenting a highly
interactive workshop at the Schmoozers’ Job Network for today’s job seekers right here in Connecticut.
This free event will be held in Kessler Hall at Beth El Temple, 2626 Albany Avenue, West Hartford, and begins with registration, networking, and schmoozing — plus complimentary coffee — at 8 a.m. The program will start promptly at 9 a.m. Please enter through the double-glass door entrance.

In addition to strategies for working with recruiters, I’ll also share the most effective techniques for leveraging the power of the Internet, social media, and networking in a job search. These best-in-class strategies are designed to help job seekers open doors and focus on two key elements: presenting your distinctive brand and differentiating attributes in the “CAR” stories that appear on your resume and using expert strategies for networking, interviewing, and securing critical job connections.

Through its Jewish Employment Transition Services, the Jewish Family Services presents this free workshop to all members of the community searching for work. For reservations or additional information, contact Lynn Preminger, program manager, at jets@jfshartford.org or call 860-236-127, ext. 37; the program facilitator is Judy Rosenthal. For further details, visit http://tinyurl.com/3xzdcpu

–Jan Melnik, MRW, CCM, CPRW… President, Absolute Advantage

“Be Inspired. It’s your career. It’s your life.”

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A Quantum Shift in Networking
Filed under: Job Search
Posted by: site admin @ 2:17 pm

“If you want a job and you’re not LinkedIn, you’re nowhere.” This according to an article in the March 25, 2010, issue of Fortune magazine. What else about social media and networking has changed staying connected and job search? Consider the following stats, gleaned from colleague Jay Block (www.jayblock.com) and www.socialnomics.com:

♦50% of the world’s population is under 30 years old and 86% have joined a social network
♦Facebook just hit 500 million; and added 200 million people in less than a year
♦60 million status updates are made on Facebook every day
♦If Facebook were a country, it would be the 3rd largest country on the planet; third only to India and China
♦The fastest growing segment on Facebook are women age 55-65
♦Social media has overtaken pornography as the #1 activity on the web
♦It took radio 38 years to reach 50 million users; TV 13 years; the Internet 4 years, and iPods 3 years; iPod application downloads hit 1 billion in nine months
♦A 2010 US Department of Education study stunningly revealed that online students out-performed those receiving a traditional face-to-face education?
♦Generation Y and Z consider email passé?
♦Ashton Kutcher and Britney Spears have more Twitter followers than the entire populations of Sweden, Norway, Switzerland, Panama, Israel, and Ireland?
♦YouTube is the second largest search engine in the world?
♦While you read this article, more than 200 hours of video will be uploaded to YouTube?
♦“Wiki” is a Hawaiian term that means “quick” and that Wikipedia has over 15 million articles where experts agree that they are as accurate as those of the Encyclopedia Britannica? (and 78% of the articles are NOT in English).
♦There are over 200 MILLION blogs; and growing?
♦78% of consumers trust peer recommendations whereas only 14% trust advertisements? In fact, up to 90% of the people who watch television skip ads via TiVo/DVR.
♦Last Christmas, Kindle eBooks outsold paper books?
♦24 of the largest 25 newspapers are experiencing record declines in circulation and most people are getting the news delivered to them via their Smartphones and computers? (for someone who loves her print newspapers, this makes me sad)
♦80% of companies use social media for recruitment; 95% of which use LinkedIn

What are the implications to job seekers today? Reread the last statistic above: If you aren’t getting in touch and staying connected, it’s truly at your own peril. Networking has been the #1 means by which people find their next jobs - to an overwhelming extent - for more than 25 years. What *has* changed is the *way* people network and stay in touch. I’ll share tips about what should (and shouldn’t) go into your LinkedIn profile in a future article. Meanwhile, Google yourself and check out what others are seeing.

–Jan Melnik, MRW, CCM, CPRW… President, Absolute Advantage

“Be Inspired. It’s your career. It’s your life.”

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