Archive | April, 2009

The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result.

30. April 2009

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Many people have avoided being proactive in the development and branding concerning their careers. As I pointed out in my last post, we all have many excuses as to why we never get around to pulling together our brand! There is no wiggle room anymore folks to searching out the answers somewhere down the road. This economy has pushed us all to stretch, and if you are not stretching, you are feeling the effects of it. If it makes you feel better to call a friend about your frustration in …

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Many people have avoided being proactive in the development and branding concerning their careers. As I pointed out in my last post, we all have many excuses as to why we never get around to pulling together our brand! There is no wiggle room anymore folks to searching out the answers somewhere down the road. This economy has pushed us all to stretch, and if you are not stretching, you are feeling the effects of it. If it makes you feel better to call a friend about your frustration in finding a job, then go for it, but this will not pay your bills! Anyone that is on a pity trip concerning their careers, whether you are out of job or waiting for the hatchet to fall, is practicing a form of insanity! If you are living with fear and stress, this is a litmus that you are not being proactive to your solutions. 

When you are proactive and searching out the answers to your problems, you always feel better. Right? Don’t get me wrong – I think everyone needs to let out their feelings and frustrations, including myself, but there comes a point when your spouse or friends start to tire about your career problems and situation. If you have a circle of unemployed friends, and all you discuss is how frustrated you are – run, don’t walk away from this circle. You only want to communicate with people that are proactive, so you can help each other out in a positive way. 

I have said in prior posts that no one wants to hear about your horrible situation. The reality is, people will distance themselves from you if this is what you bring to the table every time you talk to them. Just a fact folks.

So the way to remove the stress and fear is to start feeling like there is a light at the end of the tunnel by looking for the answers to how to move forward. Below, I have a couple of scenarios that I think can give you insight to what I am talking about.

Example: When a candidate calls me and starts complaining about their job, telling me how frustrated they are, I tell them:  The way you are going to feel better about going into work tomorrow is knowing you have an action plan for leaving and finding a better job. Instead of going to your miserable job every day, focusing on how you are going deal with another painful day, start putting together a career action plan of how you are going to leave. You develop an end game to the negative situation you are in.

Another example: You are unemployed, have not worked for 4 months, and get up every day doing the same thing as yesterday with no real results. "Insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result."  If you are not getting traction in finding a consulting gig, or finding another place to work, you are doing something wrong! 

Important:You need to identify where trends are going in your industry! This is critical.

I know I am irritating some of you in this post. That’s OK, because part of my role is to rattle you! I am saying this because I care. We all have something to offer; we all have value and unique gifts that only we posses. The trick is to put together a system that allows you to find out how to move forward in your career, so you can start to prosper! It is also imperative to package yourself to where things are going in the job market, versus pushing a resume of skill sets that no one wants.

As painful as it is folks, we all have to face the fact that we all need to think like an entrepreneur!  I had such an overwhelmingly positive response to my last post. I feel I hit a cord that everyone needed to hear. The feedback reinforced to me was, people know this is a new reality/mindset of how future opportunity will work concerning our careers. In some way, I felt like the "thinking like an entrepreneur" concept I presented was a reality everyone knew, but did not want to face. 

LOL. People that know me were not shocked with my direct tone, and this post is no different. I would rather get a rise out of my readers, and motivate them to get out of their comfort zone so that they reach their highest potential, than to write politically correct posts that are safe. That is not me. I hope the information I impart to you is more factual than emotional. If I cannot back up my advice with fact, then you will blow holes right through it.

There are all kinds of opportunity out there. If you have an interest in knowing more about how to put your career strategy together, please contact me.

Start being proactive, not reactive.

Note: Quote in title by Albert Einstein

 

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Think Like an Entrepreneur! Don’t be a corporate refugee.

3. April 2009

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  Now, have I been saying this all along in most of my posts? I feel compelled to be as clear and concise as possible at this point. I am talking to so many people that are numb, disillusioned, freaked out, dazed and confused, paranoid – is my description coming through clearly – is this you? The reason I am being so dramatic is I care about people, and I know many of you have the goods to get up off the ground and dust yourself off and make things …

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Now, have I been saying this all along in most of my posts? I feel compelled to be as clear and concise as possible at this point. I am talking to so many people that are numb, disillusioned, freaked out, dazed and confused, paranoid – is my description coming through clearly – is this you? The reason I am being so dramatic is I care about people, and I know many of you have the goods to get up off the ground and dust yourself off and make things happen! Your skill sets are transferable – you need to find out how to do this!

Folks, the days of depending on an employer for years to come are over. Get it? I almost find it hilarious when candidates say to me, "Collin I want to find a job." There is no job as far as I am concerned; it is a temporary place where you are providing a service, like a consultant. This is why I titled the post, "Think like an entrepreneur." I guarantee you will be ok if you subscribe to this. If you don’t start thinking like one, I can pretty much guarantee a lot of grief will be coming your way over the next coming years. The party is over folks. There is no more time to procrastinate getting your resume together, finally doing a blog, getting your portfolio done – no more saying, ‘I will get to that tomorrow.’ You know what I am saying.

I know many talented people out there right now who are doing well, getting promoted, making big money, are in demand and happy as a clam! Why? Because they think like an entrepreneur. As I have said to many of my candidates and clients over the years, there is a clear line between why some people succeed and others struggle. Being a headhunter, I talk and interview with thousands of people. I have been in this business for 15 years and my mother, Jola, for 40!  Becoming an entrepreneur will be painful and at first seem difficult, but if you stay committed you will get there and you will be glad you did! The rewards are tremendous. Being in control of your destiny is a feeling like no other!

Remember something: When you consult for a company make sure you give 100 percent, conduct yourself with integrity and loyalty, always leave on good terms, and make sure you made an impact while you were there. As I have said in other posts, if you become known as a taker and not a giver, as far as I am concerned, it will catch up with you. Jumping around from job to job will not work either – being known as just an opportunist will be a turn off to any good company.

I want to layout some hard facts – I challenge anyone to debate my thoughts on this.

FACT:

  •  Most people have been dependent on thier employer for many years but clearly saw, over time, a decline in long-term job security.  
  • The world is changing and changingfast!
  • You need to continually stay on top of things and stay aware of where the trends are going or you will find yourself displaced.
  • You need to stretch and get out of your comfort zone or there are going to be severe consequences.
  • If you don’t have the info you need to succeed, then find out – call me. ha.
  • You need to reinvent yourself and find where the trends are going.
  • You should have a Plan A, B and C.
  • I love this one, "If you don’t make your own decisions someone else will"!
  • You might need to look outside of your state to find work; this could be an option you need to face.
  • 3 percent of the population have most of the money and 98 percent work for them – this needs to change!  

I wanted you to hear this clearly! Again, I am being direct because I want to shake you up! Now lets look at what the characteristic of an entrepreneur looks like. Your success rate will change dramatically when you start thinking like one.

Below is a list of entrepreneurial characteristics:

  • Self-Confidence
  • A sense of urgency
  • Creative thinker
  • Ability to analyze where trends are going in a good or bad economy
  • Ability to handle stress and negative thoughts
  • Able to describe your plan with facts and figures, both quantitative and qualitative
  • You like a challenge
  • You are proactive, not reactive
  • Being healthy 
  • Be passionate
  • Plan everything
  • Manage money wisely
  • Ask for the business!
  • The ability to pick up the phone and cold call  (sorry folks, just a fact – you need to develop this skill!)
  • Love your customer
  • Become a shameless self-promoter (Hmm.. I think I know someone like that. Me! lol)
  • Project a positive image, don’t be a whiner – no one wants to hear it! Talk to your spouse about this or a good friend
  • Understand how you can leverage technology to optimize what you are doing! Very important!
  • Become a known expert
  • Create a competitive advantage
  • Sell benefits
  • Your reputation is critical
  • Master the art of negotiation
  • Know your value
  • Develop the ability to schmooze – focus on this skill set and master it

A great quote by Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, "you see you don’t have to live like a refugee."

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