Job Search Tip of the Week #134: Summer Special…

Good Afternoon

Sorry I have been away for a few weeks but now I am back!  My daughter and I have been traveling all over the world it seems…actually just New York, Palm Springs, Vegas and now she is back in NY for a couple of weeks.  It never stops over here!  With that said I have something special for you this week since I have been getting emails from the 900+ people that follow our weekly tips about my neglect :).

Here it is…the first 20 people that signup you will receive 2 one on one sessions with me where we can work on creating your resume, interview techniques, career or job search navigation planning.  These sessions normally cost $375 but because I have been “neglecting” you all for a few weeks the cost is $100.

Remember this will only be for the first 20 people only so if you are interested don’t dely.  The great thing is if you are not ready to start immediately you have 6mnths from the time you purchase to use the sessions.  Click on the link below to purchase:

Articulate U, Summer Special

Remember if you are going to invest in anything you should first invest in you!  Click on the link below and get a sense of what some of our clients say about their experience with us:

Articulate U, Client Testimonials

Have a great day and an even better week!
Kwame Dow
Articulate U is your competitive advantage!  If you don’t have a working resume click on this link and  create one in less than an hour with the Articulate U Resume Module! For more information on our services email us at info@articulate-u.com

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Job Search Tip of the Week #133: Keep Your Sword Sharp

Good Afternoon,

Summer has officially begun in the Dow Household!  My daughter thinks that now that she doesn’t have to wake up for school that she can stay up late and wake-up whenever she wants.  Guess who got a nice surprise this morning when she was greeted by a long list of chores, books to read and piano practice?  That’s right my summer vacationing daughter.  Don’t get me wrong there will be lots of fun to be had this summer including at the very least 1-2 trips to the beach per week, the museum, NY and Vegas.  Just because school is closed for the summer doesn’t mean that it’s OK for her sword to dull and she lose the foundation she built over the school year.  That brings me to this week’s Tip of the Week…Keep your sword sharp.

Tip of the Week: Keep Your Sword Sharp

By, “keep your sword sharp” I mean keep your skills sharp.  If you find yourself out of work for an extended period of time you have to make sure you stay abreast on new procedures, technology, and innovations.  How do you do this?  Read the trades and periodicals for your industry, volunteer your time so you skills don’t get rusty, enroll in a class or two if there if the opportunity presents itself.  You can even reach out to organizations like LA Works, Alliance Worknet, Goodwill Industries, Los Angeles Urban League, WorkSource system of California and of course Articulate U all of which are equip to help you.

There are many ways to keep your sword sharp but sitting on the couch is certainly not one.  Get up, get going and get back into the industry you love!

Have a great day and an even better week!
Kwame Dow

Articulate U is your competitive advantage!  If you don’t have a working resume click on This link and  create one in less than an hour with the Articulate U Resume Module! For more information on our services email us at info@articulate-u.com

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Job Search Tip of the Week #132: Step Toward Success

Good Afternoon,

This morning my daughter received recognition for perfect attendance at her school.  In the end there were about 20 kids out of 360 that were recognized (clearly I am proud of her!).  Before the kids sat back down our Principal told them that part of being successful is showing up and that they showed up every day this school year and took the first step.  I totally agree!  This week’s tip is about what you do after the first step.

Tip of the Week: Step Toward Success

Last week Monday I received an email from a client in reference to an interview she just went on, “Everything went absolutely well! We talked for about an hour and was definitely not nervous…I can’t thank you enough for your help with everything.”   She’s taking steps toward success.  I then received this text on Friday, “thanks so much!!! I had an interview today & got hired on the spot!!!  He found success!  My intent here is not to brag…but we are really good!

Look at it like this.  Reading our tips every week is showing up.  Putting them into play is taking the first step.  The two clients I referenced above to varying took it a little further and engaged our services for training or used our resume module.  At a minimum you should have an active resume regardless of if you are looking for a job or not.  An active resume helps you keep track of your successes (this comes in handy during your yearly review) when talking to your boss or just to track and ensure your career progress is on track.

If you don’t have a resume click on this link and make this investment in your long-term success.  If you can’t afford $19.97 the module costs then send me an email at info@articulate-u.com and I will give it to you for free (only if you truly can’t afford it).  Our resume module will provide you with sample Word resume complete with bullets based on your background that you just have to update and make your own.  This is not about how many resume modules my company sells this is about how successful you want to be and if you are ready to do more than just show up.  I saw a quote last week that said, “It doesn’t matter how slow you run you are still lapping the person that is sitting on the couch.”   Click on this link if you are ready to get off the couch and capture the success you desire and deserve.

Have a great day and an even better week!
Kwame Dow

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Job Search Tip of the Week #131:Turning Down a Job U Just Accepted…

Happy Monday Tuesday!

It always takes me a second to get acclimated after a holiday where we have Monday off.  Tuesday always feels like Monday, Wednesday feels like Tuesday but some how Friday always seems like Friday!  I hope you all had a great long Memorial Day Weekend and took a moment to remember those who gave the ultimate sacrifice for us.

This weekend was also my daughters 8th Birthday, how time flies!  Daddy loves you!  Last week I received a call from a job seeker who needed to know how to turn a job down that she just recently accepted…this is what I told her to do

Tip of the Week: Turning Down a Job U Just Accepted…

Whenever accepting a job offer you should always give serious thought to what it will mean for your long-term career goals.  While money and geography can be a factor, the last thing you want is a job that pays you well and is close to home or family but that brings you no satisfaction.  Whatever your choice…this is how you handle turning down a job you just accepted.

Rescind the offer of acceptance and accept the role with the company of choice.  This should not be done via email but by phone.  You owe those who took time to interview you the courtesy of letting them know directly.  I recommend that you call the recruiter or HR contact and let them know.  Then ask them if it’s OK to speak to the hiring manager to let he/she know that your decision has changed.  During these conversations there is no need to go into detail about the offer you are accepting or even the name of the company.  Let them know that the position was the ideal next step for your career and you could not pass it up.

At the end of the day they may not like that you changed your mind but will appreciate that you did so prior to starting and that it was done in a respectful manner.

Have a great day and an even better week!
Kwame Dow

For more information on how Articulate U, can get you hired! Email us at info@articulate-u.com

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Look Who’s Hiring-Macy’s Retail Certification

Good Morning,

I received a message from an amazing resource, Tonya Haynes of Phoenix Business Development Group yesterday about the Macy’s Retail Certification training program.

The Macy’s Retail Certification is beginning its 3rd cohort, May 20, 2013.
10A – 4P, Monday – Friday
Held at: Los Angeles Urban League
5681 W Jefferson Blvd. Los Angeles, CA 90016

The sessions will begin 5/20 and complete 6/6…the detailed calendar will be provided at the start of class.

The Macy’s Retail Certification Training program has been developed to recruit, train and retain well educated professionals within the retail industry.

Retail is 90% of the US gross domestic product (GDP-aka jobs created in America and funds the US economy). The retail industry consists of…

  • Clothing stores such as; Macy’s, Nordstrom’s, Ross
  • Point of Sale stores such as; Car Dealerships, Mobile Phone stores/kiosks, Apple/Microsoft Branches
  • Club stores such as; Sams, Costco and Smart & Final

To name a few…Is your dream to build a career within the retail industry? Do you know someone who would enjoy this exciting line of work?

What’s in it for YOU:

  • Guaranteed interview with Macy’s stores throughout the US**
  • A National Retail Certification that is accepted and observed at 100% of the retail establishments throughout the US**
  • FREE training that will have you on your way to the job of your dreams!

**Upon successful completion of the certification exam

If clothes, shopping and helping people find their inner “Fashionista” is your dream…apply via the below link by Friday, May 10th to begin you journey into a career in the retail industry or call the Los Angeles Urban League at 323.299.9660 x247.

Apply for the program Macy’s Certification Program

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Job Search Tip of the Week #130: Never Blame Your Former Employer…

Good Afternoon,

Did you watch the NFL draft over the weekend?  I certainly did!  If you have been following our tips for any length of time, you know that I am a big Jets fan.  As in every NFL Draft there are always surprises and twists and turns, this year was no exception.  Matt Barkley, former quarterback from USC was projected to go in the 1st round but didn’t go until the 4th round…in full disclosure I recently found myself on the USC quarterbacks are overrated bandwagon but that shouldn’t negate the value of this tip in any way.

Tip of the Week: Never Blame Your Former Employer…

A few days before the NFL Draft, Matt Barkley said (I am paraphrasing) that he could have been more productive in his senior year if his coach Lane Kiffen didn’t tailor the offense to target one of the USC players.  He went on to say that he wished he had said something instead of doing what he was told.  As soon as I heard about this I immediately wondered how/if this would change his value in the draft?  I am not an expert in the NFL Draft but I do know that it is the end one of the toughest hiring processes and since I am an expert at getting people hired then maybe I do know a thing or two about the draft.  Did Barkley’s comments turn some teams off?  You bet they did!

There is never a reason to blame your former employer for your lack of production, missing a business goal, sales target, promotion, etc.  The last thing a future employer wants to hear is that you, “didn’t because” of your former employer.  Even if it’s true there is no need to say it.  Employers want to hire people that are accountable for their actions not those who blame others for their lack of production.

I am not saying that Matt Barkley’s comments lead to him being drafted with the 1st pick in the 4th Round but I am sure they didn’t help.  Matt will likely go on and have a great career in Philadelphia but hopefully he learns from this.  Don’t let your frustration with a former employer stop you from being the 1st pick in their hiring daft.

Have a great day and an even better week!
Kwame Dow

For more information on how Articulate U, can help you during your job search email us at info@articulate-u.com or give us a call at 323-540-4220.

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Job Search Tip of the Week #129: Best Way To Uncover Your Accomplishments

Good Afternoon,

Last week a client asked me how to put together a resume of strong accomplishments if they don’t have any.  Don’t have any…that’s impossible!  It’s not that this job seeker didn’t have any strong accomplishments it’s that he was thinking about them in the wrong way.

This is what I told him to do.

Tip of the Week: Best Way To Uncover Your Accomplishments

Most people think that an accomplishment is not an accomplishment if it isn’t “big”.  The problem with this thinking is that what may be small to you may be big to someone else.  For example, let’s say you put an Excel spreadsheet together and added a formula that automatically calculates and summarizes the content in it.  This spreadsheet now saves you 5 minutes over the previous process.  By itself this may not be significant but if you multiply that 5 minutes over a work-week it becomes 25 mins…now that’s pretty significant or BIG!

Do this exercise:

Think about a function you did in your previous job then compare how you did it when left to how you did it when you first began.  Did you do it faster…if so how much faster and why?  Did make less mistakes…if so how many less and why?

You have to think about the small things that you do because they may be the big things that your next employer needs to hear before they hire you.

Have a great day and an even better week!
Kwame Dow

For more information on how Articulate U, can help you during your job search email us at info@articulate-u.com or give us a call at 323-540-4220

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Job Search Tip of the Week #128: Temp Your Way to a F/T Opportunity

Good Afternoon,

I hope you had a nice weekend and are ready for a great week!  I just got back from speaking to the Success Network at LAWORKS in Irwindale, CA and at the conclusion of my session I was asked if I really feel like the job market is getting better.  I do!

Let me explain…

Tip of the Week: Temp Your Way to A F/T Opportunity

When the economy began to slow and full-time and temporary hiring came to a screeching halt most experts, including me agreed that an increase in temporary hiring would be the first indication of a true economic turn around/uptick.  The reason being that temporary hiring increases a company’s speed to hire (time it takes to bring someone aboard).  The faster companies can bring people aboard whether temporarily or in a full time capacity increases their ability to produce products/services and the economy reaps the benefits sooner and in a real way.  It also gives companies the ability to “try before they buy” to make sure you are the right fit for them and them for you.

With an increased number of companies using temporary service agencies to bring candidates aboard it is yet another avenue to achieving your desired employment goal.  This route is not right for everyone.  It is however one of the best options for those who are currently out of work because often companies will need you to start immediately.  Employees at temp firms also serve as your advocate and based on the relationships they have with the company they may be able to get them to loosen their requirements for candidates that the temp agency feels would be a good fit.

With anything, do your research and find out which agencies work with companies that are on your target list and reach out to them.  In this case you should cast your net wide and sign up with multiple agencies for the best result.  Before you know it you will have the opportunity of your dreams.

Have a great day and an even better week!
Kwame

For more information on how Articulate U, can help you during your job search email us at info@articulate-u.com or give us a call at 323-540-4220

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Job Search Tip of the Week #127: How Much $$$ Are You Looking For…

Happy Monday!

During an interview you can sometimes be asked questions that you don’t want to answer.  One of those questions is around how much money you are looking for.  Last year we did a tip on how to answer this question and here it is.

How to Answer: How Much $$$ Are You Looking For…

“I am currently looking to make $50-$55K (or whatever your range is) however at this point in my career finding the right opportunity is most important to me.”

By answering this way you impress on the hiring manager that you are focused on your career and that this is not about just getting a job.  You also are able to keep the conversation going just in case the range you put out there is above what they are looking to pay.

At the end of the day a great company is going to pay you accordingly.  All you have to do is communicate your value and there is no way they will argue over a few thousand dollars.

Have a great day and an even better week,
Kwame

For more information on how Articulate U, can help you during your job search email us at info@articulate-u.com or give us a call at 323-540-4220

 

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Job Search Tip of the Week #126: Prepare Yourself For The Opportunity You Want

Good afternoon ,

How are you doing with your one less hour sleep?  This is one of my favorite times of the year because I enjoy the extra bit of sunshine in the afternoon and early evenings.  A little lost sleep in exchange for some added sunshine sounds like a fair tradeoff – no?  Yes!

Let’s talk tradeoffs…on Saturday I was listening to NPR and they had a story about employers feeling like college students aren’t fully prepared for the work world.  Interesting, I would venture to say college students don’t feel like employers are willing to provide their entry level workers with the kind of training needed for them to be successful.  True and True…so what to do about it?

Tip of the Week:  Prepare Yourself For The Opportunity You Want

Here is the reality, college students have to prepare themselves for the opportunity that they want by doing internships.  Classroom study alone is not going to get you hired.  You have to have some “real world” experience and internships give you that.  In fact, in many cases the training that employers don’t provide to new hires anymore is the same training that they do provide to interns.  These are the same interns that they often offered full-time positions to when they graduate.

I know I sounds like I am a broken record but for the 101st time, you have to invest in your career.  If you are no longer in college and looking to make a career change it’s important that you find a mentor, externship, volunteer, start a blog, go back to school, etc…but while doing all this you have to get practical and real world experience.  It’s the real world experience that will make your goals a reality.

The economy, contrary to popular opinion is getting better and added 256,000 jobs in February.  There are employers willing to hire and train employees but you have to show them you are ready for their opportunity.  In fact AT&T is hiring over 500 employees in the Los Angeles area.

Use this extra bit of sunshine to prepare yourself for the opportunity you want…let us help you.

Have a great day and an even better week!
Kwame

Articulate U is your competitive advantage, don’t try to do it yourself let us help you Get Back To Work! For more information on our services email us at info@articulate-u.com 323-540-4220

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