24 November 2017

Archives for November 2017

No Meeting This Week


Horn of Plenty

Happy Thanksgiving! Our next meeting is on Friday 1 December. “Closing the Interview: How to Finish the Interview Strong and Win the Job of Your Dreams.”

In the meantime, be sure to read these two blogs:

God Provides to Those Who Are Faithful. Amen!

This is Hiring Season

BTW, congratulations to nine people who’ve already landed job since hiring season began last week.

– – – – –

JobSeekers meets (almost) every Friday morning at First Baptist Church in Peachtree City from 7:30 to 10:00 am. First Baptist Church is located at 208 Willow Bend Road.

Click here for meeting day, time and location.

See you on Friday!

– Dave O’Farrell
Executive Recruiter, Outplacement Consultant
O’Farrell Career Management

“Atlanta’s most effective career services firm.”

# # #

 

God Provides to Those Who Are Faithful. Amen!

I hope all of you will take some time this week to give thanks for the many blessings our Lord has given you. Even during the cold and dreary periods of our lives, we still have more blessings than we realize or feel. I acknowledge that finding warmth and sunshine in the midst of a job search and other challenges is more difficult for some of us than for others; and more difficult during particular times in our lives than in others.

God’s Providence – A Thanksgiving Message

On Sunday 11 November 2002 – during a cold and dreary period of my life – I spent the day sightseeing around Los Angeles. I was in the middle of a two-week training assignment in Rancho Cucamonga. In the morning I went to Mission San Juan Capistrano. You may have heard of this place because it’s where the swallows come around March 19 each year.

Mission San Juan Capistrano is named for St. John of Capistrano, Italy, who was a theologian in the 14th century. It was established 241 years ago, on 1 November 1776. It was the seventh mission founded by Father Junipero Serra. The Mission has the distinction of being home to the oldest building in California still in use – a chapel built in 1782, and now known as “Serra’s Chapel.”

The peace of God was in that beautiful place. I took my Bible and did my daily reading for the Bible study class I was taking at church. The story I read was in 1 Kings 17; the story of the widow in Zarephath, who was down to her very last meal. The scene took place near the end of a three-year drought in Israel and Judah. God sent Elijah to her town, and in a separate message, God commanded her to supply Elijah with food, which she obediently did. Why would someone give away his or her very last meal? Here’s the story:

The Widow at Zarephath (1 Kings 17:7-16)

Some time later the brook dried up because there had been no rain in the land. Then the word of the LORD came to Elijah: “Go at once to Zarephath of Sidon and stay there. I have commanded a widow in that place to supply you with food.” So he went to Zarephath. When he came to the town gate, a widow was there gathering sticks. He called to her and asked, “Would you bring me a little water in a jar so I may have a drink?” As she was going to get it, he called, “And bring me, please, a piece of bread.”

“As surely as the LORD your God lives,” she replied, “I don’t have any bread – only a handful of flour in a jar and a little oil in a jug. I am gathering a few sticks to take home and make a meal for myself and my son, that we may eat it – and die.”

Elijah said to her, “Don’t be afraid. Go home and do as you have said. But first make a small cake of bread for me from what you have and bring it to me, and then make something for yourself and your son. For this is what the LORD, the God of Israel, says: ‘The jar of flour will not be used up and the jug of oil will not run dry until the day the LORD gives rain on the land.'”

She went away and did as Elijah had told her. So there was food every day for Elijah and for the woman and her family. For the jar of flour was not used up and the jug of oil did not run dry, in keeping with the word of the LORD spoken by Elijah.

God Provides to Those Who Are Faithful. Amen!

Who among us has faith as powerful as the faith of the widow? She gave Elijah some food before she fed her son and herself. Even when it seemed she had nothing left to give, she gave. Her faith was rewarded. It was just the message I needed to hear that day, because it was during a time in my life where my tank was empty. I wrote this in the margin of my Bible: “11 Nov 02 at San Juan Capistrano: God provides to those who are faithful. Amen!”

I know some of you feel that you are down to your very last meal. I’m amazed at how some of you have hung in there in the face of many, many disappointments. My message to you is this: be strong in the Lord, have faith in God, lay your cares at Jesus’ feet, and you will experience God’s peace, power, presence and protection.

Have faith that your jar of flour will not be used up and your jug of oil will not run dry until the day the LORD gives rain on your land.

See you on Friday 1 December at JobSeekers, where we live in the abundance of God’s grace!

Copyright © 2004-2017 / Dave O’Farrell / All Rights Reserved

This is Hiring Season

Hiring season


Don’t sit on the sidelines during the hiring season.

This is hiring season. Every year I find out that many of you are less active – or not active at all – in your job search in November and December, especially between Thanksgiving and New Year’s. If I hear from you, it goes something like this, “Dave, I’ve been looking for a while and I’m kind of burned out on job search, so I need a break; besides, no one’s hiring around the holidays anyway.”

Have you had thoughts and feelings similar to this?

No one is hiring around the holidays? In the battlefield of the mind, the Father of Lies wants to you to think this way. Friends, NOTHING COULD BE FURTHER FROM THE TRUTH! On the contrary, many executive recruiters have a higher quota in December than in any other month.

If a company’s fiscal year is the same as the calendar year, budgets are formulated and approved in September and October. Imagine a plant manager finally getting approval in FY2018 for a much-needed new position – let’s say it’s a plant engineer. Candidates are screened, interviewed and offered jobs in November and December. They start their new jobs on the first business day of January.

Satan would love it if you put your search on hold for eight weeks!

Is your competition interviewing for jobs that you’re qualified for while you’re out spending money you don’t have? Will they be starting a new job on Tuesday 2 January 2018 because you were out shopping, or doing projects around the house, or unwinding because of all the stress of your job search?

Companies are hiring right now.

Every year several JobSeekers start new jobs in January because they didn’t sit on the sidelines in November and December. Get in the game now. Today is a workday. You have a full-time job right now – with deferred compensation!

In 2003, for instance, Dave Tripp went home to Kansas for Thanksgiving. He came back with a job offer. Andy Whitlock, leader of the job ministry in Newnan, interviewed for a job the week before Christmas and again on New Year’s Eve; he got the offer within a week. He said, “And I thought the holidays were going to be quiet.”

In 2004 Henry Gregorich went to a company Christmas party; he seized the opportunity to do some job networking and made a great impression on a gentleman who called a couple of weeks later to see if Henry was still looking. He was, and the gentleman offered him a job. Don Apking, Randy Coggin and Ken King also wrote to me late in December to inform me of their new position.

In 2005. Mark Foote, Cliff Barrett, Dennis Szczepanski, Patrick Bauer and Kelly Carroll accepted jobs in the last two weeks of December.

In 2006, Bobby Rose, Bruce Brzoska, Heidi Lesser, Alan Millsaps, Richard Rodriguez, George Smith and Chris Clark interviewed for and/or accepted a job between 13 December and the end of the year. If they had been sitting on the sidelines in December, they’d still be looking for a job in January.

In 2007, between 11/15/2007 and 1/17/2008 (64 days) I received 26 “I got a job” emails, plus some others verbally – one every other day. In fact, eight of the emails arrived between January 3rd and 7th. Wes Hill received three offers in one week. Mike Fowler received a job offer while we were at the Atlanta Bread Company; he’d been unemployed less than five weeks. Aaron Royster interviewed for a job on December 26th; yes, the day after Christmas! He started on January 14th. Don’t sit on the sidelines this season.

In 2008, we had 20 people get jobs in October. Phil Kelley landed a job on November 3rd. This was followed closely by John Thomas, Adrian Neeley, Don Menke, Cynthia Stallworth, Gordon Brown, Pete Wallace, Kelly Sigmon, Donald Augustus and Matt Dukes.

Matt wrote, “Staying in the hunt during the holiday season does pay off. I found this job through an evening newsletter that I get through The FENG (Financial Executive’s Networking Group). I happened to see the posting in the job leads section that appeared on the last newsletter that I would get for 2008. I applied to the position on Christmas Eve, had a phone interview on the 26th and an in-person interview on New Year’s Eve. Before I had left the office on the 31st, I was offered the position and, of course, gladly accepted. I started here on January 5th.”

In 2009, I received 17 emails from people who accepted jobs between 15 November and 15 January: Able Vega, Alan Sibley, Ann Cook, Beth Mulhern, Caitlin Hall-West, Chris Westberry, Dave Bayer, Dennis Szczepanski, Donna Cook, Doug Flatt, Ed Mackiewicz, Mary Reintz, Mike Murtaugh, Norma Manuel, Rolea Palomares, Rose Humphrey and Shelia Garza. One of these 17 people got a $20K raise – yes, back when the unemployment rate was 9.9%.

In 2010, we had our second-best year with 21 people: Jeff Boggs, Pat Behrens, Wade Massengill, Stephen Bachmann, Norm Van Horn, Rodger Purdy, Charmaine Barton, Terri Dull, Matt Iffland, Donna Anderson, Lisa Brown, Gary McDougal, Bert Jermain, Kevin Askew, Kevin Edwards, Dayanara Reyes, Mark Cuneo, Scott Armbrust, Forrest Simmons and David Long.

In 2011, 16 people emailed me during this 60-day period: Joe De Sieno, Cindy Van Wert, Bill Tucker, Travis Raitt, Hans Nielsen, John Bell, Bryan Bear, Paul Johnson, Pat Ebersole, Carl Bissantz, Don Shoaf, Jasmina Jovic, Jeff Liddy, Paul Dickinson, John Roland and Linda Mackey. Carl started his new job on 27 December. Jeff and Bryan had two offers each. I started working with Paul Dickinson as a client on 13 December. He started a new job 28 days later.

In 2012, 13 people emailed me with their good news: Carolina Segovia, Patrick James, Joycelyn Avila, Hollise Bello, Marie Griffies, Rich Braun, Lee Longe, Angela Tavarez, Mike Grimes, Rosie Dove, Carl Bissantz, Richard Hardin and Ken Roberts. The last two started on January 7. Two had a search of 40 days or less. Don’t sit on the sidelines during the hiring season.

In 2013, the final tally for the hiring season (64 days beginning 15 November) was 32. That was a new record, PTL. Congratulations to Alfreda, Andrew, Annette, Bo, Bobby, Bryan, Cheryl, Dan, Daniela, David, Ed, Elaine, Greg, Heather, Jeff, Joel, Kathy, Keith, Kenny, Michael, Mike, Muraya, Pamela, Patrick, Rick, Ruben, Scott, Scott, Tanesha, Tommy, Trevor, and Zaffar!

In 2014, the final tally was 39 another new world record: Janine Scott-Ford, Debora Nash, Darryl Mullins, Tom McCutchen, Tim Forse, Stacy York, Dave Tripp, Sonja Sleeper, Jessica Spain, Dean Dunton, Daniel Garcia, Jessica Palazzolo, Ed Mackiewicz, Jim Rudolph, Bryan Warren, Mike Knippel, Alan Burks, Brenden St. John, Darlene Crawley, Nicole Spangler, Eric Miller, Carrie Toth, Valerie Baldowski, Philip Vaughn, Dave Lowry, Emelyn East, Elaine Feinblum, Sharleen Oetting, Adrian Gillies, Jim Goodart, Bill Kendrick, Lecia Laswell, Donna Osbourn, John Chandler, Christian Garcia, Robert Kirby, Stacey Stoykewich, Andrea Brzoska, Charlie Jackson.

In 2015, the final tally was 28: Alex Rogers, Andi Shen, Bob Bennett, Chris Fedelem, Dan Tennet, Dana Chitwood, Daniel Boccella, Deborah Jackson, Diana Davis, Drew Spangler, Holly Rafford, Jim Gillespie, Joyce Webb, Karen Gomes, Kate Williams, Kevin Newman, Larry Beuerlein, Lindsay Quandt, Marilyn Robinson, Michael Henson, Paula Bartlett, Rachel Hess, Richard Scarlett, Rusty Ortkiese, Stephanie Taylor, Sydney Maxwell, Tim Robinson, Tom McCutchen.

Last year, I didn’t track this. I was too darn busy. I won’t track it this year either. What I do notice from employers here in 2017 is a genuine surge in optimism. That means more j-o-b-s.

Don’t sit on the sidelines during the hiring season.

Let’s make this year the best year ever!

Are you equipped for hiring season?

One key concern I have is that you think you have good tools to fight this battle. No you don’t. I’ve seen your résumés. You’re good at what you do – but you’ve got lousy résumés. You’re going onto the battlefield with a butter knife. You think you have a B-1 bomber; you don’t even have a bazooka – or even a bayonet. If you’d like me to rate your résumé as a butter knife, bayonet, bazooka, or B-1 bomber, just email your résumé to me and I’ll offer my professional opinion.

More open positions, fewer active seekers.

And one more piece of good news: as the number of open positions increases during the holiday season, the number of job seekers who are actively looking decreases – because of the false assumption mentioned in the first paragraph above.

Yes, you can get a job if you use the strategy, tools and skills we teach – and top it off with a positive attitude. Is it tough out there in the battlefield? Yes, but with God’s help you can do it. All you need is ONE job. Don’t sit on the sidelines this season.

Here are three things I challenge you to do as the holidays approach:

1. Work on your search 24/7.

Work hard. Work smart. Always be on the lookout for networking opportunities. Don’t make a mistake that will cost you two months’ pay. What would God want you to do ? Sit on the sidelines or look for a job? Look again at Proverbs 3:5-6 from The Message: “Trust God from the bottom of your heart; don’t try to figure out everything on your own. Listen for God’s voice in everything you do, everywhere you go; he’s the one who will keep you on track.” Notice the phrase, “in everything you do.” It implies action, not passivity.

2. Be joyful always, even when money it tight.

Don’t spend beyond your means. Set a good example for your kids and others. What better time to show that your happiness is not rooted in what you have or in what great (expensive) presents you can give? Your happiness comes from the spirit of the living God. I think of Paul’s words in Philippians 4:10-12: “I rejoice greatly in the Lord … I am not saying this because I am in need, for I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want.”

3. Bring joy to others, especially those who are not connected to you.

God desires a sacrifice of our time, talents and treasure. When money is tight, you can still give of your time and talents. We are God’s hands and feet, so put them to work. Back to Paul’s words; this time in Philippians 2:3-4: “Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves. Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others.”

I close with this blessing from Paul: “May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” – Romans 15:13

See you at JobSeekers on Friday, where we rejoice year-round – whether we are employed or not.

Copyright © 2004-2017 / Dave O’Farrell / All Rights Reserved

Holiday Networking / How to Earn $10K Real Fast

Holiday networking: Don't delay! Set your alarm now!


Don’t delay! Set your alarm now!

Our topic this week for Friday 17 November is holiday networking. It’s also about doing what’s best for you and for your family. This Friday you will learn strategies and practice skills that will help you leverage the contacts you make during this holiday season. I will also share the secret to earning thousands of dollars during the holiday season.

– – – – –

But here’s what I really want to say:

Hi friends, Billy Mays here for JobSeekers of Peachtree City! Come tomorrow to learn the amazing secrets of how to earn $8,900 in just six weeks! Yes, you can have it all by using the strategy, tools and skills taught at the exciting, fun-filled, action-packed meetings held every Friday morning at First Baptist Church of Peachtree City!

Don’t delay! Set your alarm now! Don’t miss this holiday networking event! Yes, these methods work like magic when applied with a healthy dose of a positivity and the power of prayer!

And it’s all yours for only $1.00! A whopping $120 value, for only $1.00. Here’s how to order!

– – – – –

JobSeekers meets every Friday morning at First Baptist Church in Peachtree City from 7:30 to 10:00 am. First Baptist Church is located at 208 Willow Bend Road.

Click here for meeting day, time and location.

See you on Friday!

– Dave O’Farrell
Executive Recruiter, Outplacement Consultant
O’Farrell Career Management

“Atlanta’s most effective career services firm.”

# # #

 

Stretch Zone? No Way, I’ll Surf the Net!

Stretch zone


“Are you on the right track?”

Have you been in the stretch zone today?

Will Rogers once said, “Even if you’re on the right track, you’ll get run over if you just sit there.” Life is not about being comfortable. God doesn’t want us to be comfortable. He wants us to be learning and growing everyday. He doesn’t want us to be satisfied with the status quo. What if the apostle Paul had been satisfied with converting a few Jews in Judah? If you are sitting still, you are falling behind. Those of us who are satisfied with the status quo will become yesterday’s news. You have to leave your comfort zone every day to be successful.

Getting hit by a train may not be fatal, but it can put you or a Fortune 500 company in the ICU for years. When I had speaking engagements in the mid- to late-90’s I mentioned 18 companies listed in the iconic business classic, “In Search of Excellence.” I described what happened when they sat still. From the late 80’s to the mid-90’s IBM and Digital, two of the stars in the book, were having massive layoffs. They had gotten cocky when they were held up as paragons of perfection to the rest of the business world. You know the story; after laying off hundreds of thousands of employees, IBM heeded their wake-up call and did what they had to do to become a strong business again. Digital didn’t. Compaq gobbled them up, and then Compaq succumbed to HP. Hewlett Packard, by the way, was another company featured in the list. So was Delta Air Lines.

My stretch zone experience.

The farthest I was ever out of my comfort zone professionally was on the day of the 2000 presidential election – the day Bush and Gore tied. That was the day I auditioned to be a senior training consultant for Richardson, a sales training and consulting company based in Philadelphia. I had learned of the position by networking with a friend in ASTD, an association of professional trainers.

After I passed two telephone interviews, they sent their flagship book, “Stop Telling, Start Selling,” to me. They instructed me to become thoroughly familiar with the book before my interview. The interview would consist of a traditional interview with the COO, and then she would give me a training module I had never seen before. I’d have 45 minutes to learn the material, and then I would present the module to the COO and CEO.

I guarantee you I wanted to bail out as soon as I heard that. Wave after wave of self-doubt raced through my mind. My sleep was interrupted immediately. I pressed on, studying the material and rehearsing in my mind despite these visions of “freezing” during the audition.

They flew me to Philadelphia the day before Election Day. I hunkered down in my hotel room and tried to review the material. My mouth was so dry my tongue stuck to the roof of my mouth. I can tell you with certainty that I had the worst night of sleep in my life due to professional stress. I managed two hours of sleep during the six I was in bed. Thoughts of being so tired I’d be incoherent during the audition faded in and out of view. I wasn’t sure if I could hold my breakfast down the next morning.

“For God did not give us a spirit of timidity, but a spirit of power, of love and of self-discipline.”

– 2 Timothy 1.7

I’d like to tell you that I prayed my way through this; I simply don’t remember whether I did or not. It’s very likely that I repeated one of my affirmations, “I put everything in God’s hands. I ask for the ability to do my best, and I confidently leave the results to God.” I do know this: God was with me and I was at my best. I was encouraged when Linda, the CEO, remarked after looking at my resume and hearing my self-introduction, “If you don’t like all the travel that goes with this training and consulting job, we could put you on our sales team.”

Now it was time for the audition. Linda asked for me to pretend that she and Dorothy represented two-dozen managing directors from Goldman Sachs, which was one of their key customers. (GS is nowhere to be found on their website these days.) I presented the objection resolution module, which is a key differentiator for them. I knew that interaction was very important to them, so I engaged them as much as I could.

At one point Linda interrupted the action and gave me some feedback – both strengths and areas for improvement – and I immediately incorporated the concepts into my facilitation of the module. Before I knew it Linda interrupted again, gave me more feedback, said a hasty goodbye and left the room. My heart sank to the floor as the door to the conference room door closed behind her.

Dorothy, the COO, slapped her hand on the table and said, “Oh she loved you!” I said, “That was love?” Dorothy said they had interviewed a thousand potential trainers over the past 20 years and hired only three-dozen. Without consulting Linda, she offered me the job and began discussing my training schedule.

Would I go through that misery again? You bet. It was very rewarding to work for Richardson. I traveled as far as Hartford, the Florida Keys, San Diego and Seattle, and many points in between. I trained 2000 sales reps at Dell and over 1000 more at companies like KPMG Consulting, Bank of America, Sears, GlaxoSmithKline and Prudential Bank.

At Richardson, I developed skills and built self-confidence that I will use the rest of my life. Now that I’ve moved on, I use those experiences every day in my career coaching business. I left my comfort zone and reaped great rewards.

God wants you to get out of your comfort zone. He wants you to learn and grow. He wants you to try new things. Here are three steps to help you get yourself out of your comfort zone; if you do number one and two, number three is much easier:

1. Pray and read your Bible.

Vocalize your feelings to God. Ask Him for the strength and confidence to overcome those terrifying feelings of anxiety. Find scriptures that encourage you. Many of the great characters in the Bible (e.g. Moses and Jeremiah) didn’t want to answer God’s call. He persuaded them and look what happened. God didn’t give us a spirit of timidity – He gives us a spirit of power and love and self-discipline. God is calling you to greater things. Answer his call!

2. Use affirmations and visualization.

I believe in was baseball great Curt Schilling who said used visualization to improve his performance before he pitched in the 2004 World Series. Other athletes use affirmations to improve theirs. Picture success. Think positive. I created 20 biblically based affirmations several years ago and used them frequently in my job search. I mentioned one up above. To see the whole list, click here »

3. Just do it.

Feel the fear and do it anyway. Take small steps. Learn to walk before you run. Practice your skills at the JobSeekers meetings. Practice with a friend. Hire a coach. Then do it. I read somewhere that 85% of what we worry about never happens. Friends, when you leave your comfort zone good things happen!

What I want you to get out of this is that you reap what you sow. No risk = no reward. Small risk = small reward. Big risk = big reward. Stay in your comfort zone and use online job boards = long job search. Get in the stretch zone and go out and network = shorter job search. You choose.

Come to JobSeekers this Friday, where we get into the stretch zone every week.

Copyright © 2005-2017 / Dave O’Farrell / All Rights Reserved

 

How to Evaluate and Negotiate the Job Offer

negotiate the job offer


No deal, Howie!

Our topic this week is “Deal or No Deal: How to Evaluate and Negotiate the Job Offer.” I’ve helped many clients negotiate a better job offer; worked with one client on this topic last week. One time I helped a client get a $20K raise after he received the written offer. Come to JS on Friday and I will share my secrets with you.

The purpose of this session is to help you get what you’re worth when the offer finally comes in. We’ll help you avoid some potential quicksand along the way, we’ll give you a broader perspective on what a total compensation package is, and we’ll discuss having that delicate conversation about compensation and benefits.

– – – – –

JobSeekers meets every Friday morning at First Baptist Church in Peachtree City from 7:30 to 10:00 am. First Baptist Church is located at 208 Willow Bend Road.

Click here for directions and agenda.

See you on Friday!

– Dave O’Farrell
Executive Recruiter, Outplacement Consultant
O’Farrell Career Management

“Atlanta’s most effective career services firm.”

# # #

Acing the Behavioral Interview

acing-panel-interview


Tell us about a time when…

Our topic this Friday is “Acing the Behavioral Interview: How to Knock Their Socks Off By Focusing on Results!” It picks up where we left off a couple of weeks ago.

Some of you are getting into the “red zone” but you’re not scoring touchdowns. One seeker recently told us he’d had 13 first interviews and zero second interviews. Maybe this week we can crack the code.

This week’s topic focuses on one of the most common types of interviews. If you don’t understand the employer’s strategy, you may not do well in the interview, even if you are a well-qualified candidate. Come tomorrow for this important topic – and for a great learning experience.

– – – – –

JobSeekers meets every Friday morning at First Baptist Church in Peachtree City from 7:30 to 10:00 am. First Baptist Church is located at 208 Willow Bend Road.

Click here for directions and agenda.

See you on Friday!

– Dave O’Farrell
Executive Recruiter, Outplacement Consultant
O’Farrell Career Management

“Atlanta’s most effective career services firm.”

# # #

 

The 2nd Most Important Thing Every Job Seeker Must Have

Many of you have heard me talk, and have seen articles I’ve written about, the #1 thing every job seeker must have. Your chances of finding a job without having the #1 thing are pretty slim – as in “slim and none (and slim’s on vacation!).” After working with thousands of people over the past 24 years I’ve concluded your chances aren’t a whole lot better unless you have the #2 thing too. The most important thing every job seeker must have is a positive attitude; the second most important thing is great follow-up and follow through.

For example, I’ll call or email a troubled job seeker (or O’Farrell client, ugh) to see how his or her search is going. When I don’t hear back, I call and leave a message that goes something like this: “Jill, this is Dave O’Farrell. I have some good news for you; give me a call.” When Jill calls to hear the good news, I say, “Jill, the good news is that I know what’s standing between you and a new job: YOU DON’T FOLLOW U-U-U-P-P-P-P-P!!!”

Here are some other examples of things I see from time to time:

  1. I hear through the grapevine that someone has missed an interview.
  2. One of my clients forgets an appointment with me.
  3. Someone has a hot lead for someone else at JobSeekers; the other person fails to follow through. In one specific instance that I know of, the fellow had been looking for a job for over a year.

Follow-up and follow through applied.

Follow-up and follow through are vitally important not just for success in search, but in most areas of our lives. JobSeekers’ advisory board member and management consultant JB Kirk says that poor follow-up and follow through behaviors are epidemic in the executive ranks throughout corporate America. The implications for the job seeker are obvious: demonstrate good behavior in this area, and you will certainly stand out.

My first indicator of good follow up behavior (and therefore, job search success) with a new member of JobSeekers is when he or she responds to the welcome message I send to each new person. I ask them to respond to three questions. I also ask them to email a résumé. People who honor these two requests honor themselves. Their response not only helps us to help them; it also indicates the behavior that will lead to success in search, on the new job, and in many other areas of life.

Another key indicator happens on Fridays. I’ll have some advice, information or a referral (AIR) that can help someone and I’ll ask him or her to send me an email with a reminder of what I promised. Guess how many people follow through? About one in five. Amazing.

» Only one person from last Friday!

Some indicators of good follow through behavior (and therefore, job search success) with one of my clients is whether or not he or she completes the exercises that I assign before, during and after the MRMT™ workshop. I assign a lot more work than can be accomplished on the first day of the workshop, so I give clients four days (Friday through Monday) in between the first and second day to follow through on their assignments. Many times clients come in with a list of excuses of why they couldn’t devote any time to completing their assignments over the weekend. I wonder, was that an aberration, or was that a fairly typical four days of job search at your house?

A few years ago a client wrote to tell me about her new job. Julie wrote: “I had four companies interested in me all at once: a couple of contract positions near closure and one permanent position here in Atlanta that I was just waiting on the offer. Then another offer came in. It started when I received a call from the CFO. We interviewed over the phone, and then I went in for an interview (five people in five hours!). Within 48 hours I sent all five people a thank you note that was unique to the interview we had. Within two weeks they had finalized the offer. The use of the materials we developed in your workshop were critical, Dave. When the CEO called to offer me the job, he said that I did an excellent job of follow-up.”

The #2 thing’s bottom line.

Hiring managers are busy; sometimes the job goes to the one who has the best follow-up – someone who is persistent without being a pest – someone who is finding a way to make it happen instead of finding a reason why it didn’t.

The bottom line is this: to improve your job search results, improve your follow-up and follow through behaviors. The solution is simple. Make a decision to follow-up and follow through. Manage your time. Set priorities and stick to them. Here are three relevant verses:

  1. Proverbs 13:18 – He who ignores discipline comes to poverty and shame, but whoever heeds correction is honored.
  2. Proverbs 24:32-33 – A little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands to rest – and poverty will come on you like a bandit and scarcity like an armed man.
  3. Titus 1:8 – Rather he must be hospitable, one who loves what is good, who is self-controlled, upright, holy and disciplined.

You’ve got to be disciplined. You’ve got to follow up on every networking or job lead just like a crime scene investigator does. You never know which clue may be the one that cracks the case.

If you have an anecdote about follow-up and follow though from your job search (either a good or bad), please send it to me. I’d love to hear it. Thanks.

See you on Friday at JobSeekers, the place where we learn and apply godly self-discipline.

Copyright © 2006-2017 / Dave O’Farrell / All Rights Reserved