16 January 2018

Archives for 2018

Looking for Hippos

Hippos #3Been looking for hippos lately? If not, I recommend you come to JobSeekers on Friday. You’ll learn to look for hippos, and then to execute them.

Hippos are one of the key elements that determine how soon and how successful you are in your job search. Hippos are also critical to sales people, sales managers, executives and entrepreneurs. Come tomorrow and learn how to find and execute “hippos.”

Hippos, by the way, are “high payoff activities.” In 24 years in the career management business, I’ve met only of handful of people who truly live by the concepts I will teach on Friday.

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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.”

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If You’re Going Through Hell, Keep Going

Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego survive hell on earth

Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego in the fiery pit — who’s the fourth guy?

“If you are going through hell, keep going.”
– Sir Winston Churchill

When I’ve gone through tough times in my life, I’ve found it helpful to remind myself that the difficulty I’m in is only temporary. I know many of you are going through some unimaginably tough times right now. When we find ourselves in a fiery pit, it may seem that we are bound to stay there for eternity. That’s not the case of course; oftentimes what determines how long we’re in the flames are the things we think, feel and do.

Meet Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego. 

The ultimate example of being in the flames took place during the captivity of the Hebrews in Babylon. The story is told in the first three chapters of the book of Daniel. After Daniel had interpreted a dream of King Nebuchadnezzar’s, the King was so impressed he appointed Daniel governor of Babylon. King Nebuchadnezzar also gave important posts to Daniel’s three friends: Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego.

Later the King gave orders for a statue to be built; it was to be 90 feet high, nine feet wide, and made of solid gold. With great pomp and ceremony he commanded his officers, governors, captains and counselors to come and worship the statue as god. Only Daniel’s three friends refused.

When King Nebuchadnezzar learned that his order had been defied, he flew into a rage and demanded that Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego be brought before him. “If you do not worship as I tell you, I will have you thrown into the furnace and burned to death!”

They replied, “O Nebuchadnezzar, we do not need to defend ourselves before you in this matter. If we are thrown into the blazing furnace, the God we serve is able to save us from it, and he will rescue us from your hand, O king. But even if he does not, we want you to know, O king, that we will not serve your gods or worship the image of gold you have set up.”

Nebuchadnezzar had the furnace heated to seven times its usual heat (How would they have measured it back then?). Then the men, fully clothed, were thrown into the flames. To his astonishment, Nebuchadnezzar saw not only that the men were unharmed, but also that there was a fourth man in there with them. When the king called them out from the flames, everyone saw that not a hair was singed, not a thread of clothing was burnt. Nebuchadnezzar decreed that he and his people would worship only their God.

God delivers us while we are in the flames.

Chuck Hodges, senior pastor at Athens First UMC, describes this as more than a divine encounter. He says that sometimes God delivers us from the furnace, but other times he delivers us while we are in the furnace. Our goal is to avoid the flames, but God is right here with us while we are in the flames. Many believe that the fourth person in those flames with Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego was the preincarnate Christ.

Charles Lindsey, a former member of JobSeekers, wrote to me: “God is always able – but sometimes does not remove the circumstances – and that should not alter our commitment to faith in God. The three men had no assurance of a physical rescue, but were solid in their spiritual health. That has always seemed to strike much more of a chord with me than biblical heroes that heard directly from God with a future promise.”

Never, never, never give up!

I opened this message with Churchill, and I will close with Churchill. On 29 October 1941, British Prime Minister Winston Churchill visited the Harrow School in Harrow, England to speak to the students. This became one of his most quoted speeches, due to distortions that evolved about what he said.

The myth is that Churchill stood before the students and said, “Never, never, never, never give up. Never give up. Never give up. Never give up.” The first time I heard the myth, it was only five words: “Never, never, never give up.” Then he sat down. (That would have been a great speech, by the way.)

In reality, he made a complete speech that included words similar to what are often quoted. Here’s the excerpt: “Never give in. Never give in. Never, never, never, never – in nothing, great or small, large or petty – never give in, except to convictions of honour and good sense. Never yield to force. Never yield to the apparently overwhelming might of the enemy.”

Friends, never yield to the apparently overwhelming might of the enemy.

You are in the midst of the flames right now, and Jesus in right by your side – just as he was with Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego. In spite of the apparently overwhelming might of the enemy, they claimed the ultimate power – the power of God almighty. The difference is in what you think, feel and do. Choose God, the ultimate source of encouragement and strength.

See this Friday at JobSeekers, where we never give in and never give up!

Copyright © 2004-2018 / Dave O’Farrell / All Rights Reserved

Where David Found His Strength

strengthAs we begin a new year, I want to share what I’ve learned about how, when and where David found his strength. The great warrior poet of the Old Testament had his ups and downs. If you don’t believe me, read the Psalms. The most difficult days of his life prepared him to lead a nation and to write psalms that still inspire us 3000 years later.

I’m looking forward to 2018 with hope in my heart, optimism in my eyes, and faith in God that through Him, all things are possible! In recent weeks I’ve spoken to many of you who are feeling quite the opposite: you have lost hope, are feeling depressed, and don’t believe much of anything good is possible.

Maybe we can learn from David.

Spring always follows winter.

Sometimes the seasons of our life aren’t always synched up with the seasons of the year. When many people are full of joy, you may be in the doldrums. Ecclesiastes says there’s a time and a season for everything. It may be winter in your life now, but spring is just around the corner.

David had a rough winter in his life before he became King of Israel.

John Ortberg tells the story of how David hid in caves to escape Saul in “If You Want to Walk on Water, You’ve Got to Get Out of the Boat.” Although I’d read the story about hiding in caves before, I didn’t realize that David was on the run from Saul for about 10 years. In my mind he went from the youth who slew Goliath to King David in a short period of time.

Here’s what really happened: after being a shepherd and slaying Goliath, he was a musician in King Saul’s court. From there he became a warrior and rose to become the most successful officer in the army. At that point Saul became jealous (see 1 Samuel 18: 7-9). He tried various ways of killing David, including using his daughter Michal as a snare. The trap didn’t work; in fact, David married Michal.

As the story progresses, David loses his job (here’s our link), loses his wife (she was given to another man by her father), loses his best friend (Saul’s son Jonathan), loses his mentor (Samuel, who had anointed him when he was just a shepherd boy, and had continued to give David advice over the years – he died of old age), he lost his friend Ahimelech and 84 other priests who had sided with him (they were killed by Doeg the Edomite because they had protected David), and he had survived a few assassination attempts (Saul himself hurled a spear at him, 1 Samuel 20:33).

Are you getting the picture here? Things weren’t going so well for David.

David found strength in the Lord his God – in caves.

David hid in caves; he was constantly on the run from Saul’s army, just like Saddam Hussein when he was hiding from the U.S. special forces. David found 600 loyal men and their families who stuck with him. Things got even worse when David and his men returned from some raids on nearby towns to find that their city, Ziklag, had been burned to the ground and all their wives, sons and daughters had been taken captive by the Amalakites. Now even his loyal men turned on him. Ortberg says what David did next was one of the great statements in scripture (1 Samuel 30:6): “David found strength in the Lord his God.”

The story ends well. David and his men killed the Amalakites and got back their wives, children and all their possessions that had been taken as plunder. The Philistines killed Saul and his sons. David was anointed king, and he became the greatest king in the Bible, a man after God’s own heart. And he was the father (many generations removed) of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

Ortberg says the cave is a wonderful place to find that you are loved by God. He says, “The cave is where God does some of his best work in molding and shaping human lives. Sometimes when all the props and crutches in your life get stripped away and you find you have only God, you discover that God is enough.” (p.139)

How many of you reading this message today are in a cave right now? I’ve spent quite a bit of time in caves myself these past few years, and I am a better man for it. Use this cave time to allow God to mold and shape you. Use this time for good. It has a purpose. God has a purpose. Like David, there are indeed brighter days ahead for you. It’s God’s promise to all of us. As we begin a new year, listen to Jesus’ words to us, the sheep of his flock:

“Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.” – John 14:27

Let’s all look forward to 2018 with hope in our hearts, optimism in our eyes, and faith in God that through Him, all things are possible! Amen!

See you on Friday at JobSeekers, the place where we always find hope.

Copyright © 2003-2018 / Dave O’Farrell / All Rights Reserved

Seven Job Search Strategies

job search strategies


Where are you investing your time?

Seven Job Search Strategies and Their Relative Effectiveness

Delighted to report that several clients have landed jobs in the past couple of weeks! What I’m teaching at JobSeekers this Friday is fundamental to the process we use here at O’Farrell Career Management. It’s part of the process that these clients used to earn their offers.

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Tired of beating your head against the wall? Our topic this week, “Seven Job Search Strategies and Their Relative Effectiveness” might help end your frustration and pain.

The holiday season is over. School is gearing back up. It’s time to get off the sidelines and back in the game! It seems many people are experiencing some serious inertia this week. Come to JS this Friday and get your mojo back!

I’ll teach you what works (and why) and what doesn’t (and why not). I will share something that I’ve never seen on another career website, or seen in another book, or heard from another career coach. If you embrace this concept, prepare yourself thoroughly, and maintain a positive attitude you can and will land a job.

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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 more information about the meetings and agenda.

See you on Friday!

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

“Atlanta’s most effective career services firm.”

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