17 January 2019

Archives for January 2018

Belichick Fired!

fired

Bill Belichick

With the Super Bowl coming up this weekend, I wondered how many of you know that Bill Belichick was fired after five seasons as head coach of the Cleveland Browns. Since then, he’s won five Super Bowls. He will undoubtedly be a first-ballot entry into Pro Football’s Hall of Fame.

Sports reporters and analysts were ready to write Belichick’s obituary after the 1995 season. After five years as head coach of the Cleveland Browns, his record was a paltry 37-45; that’s a 45.1% winning ratio. In 1994, Belichick’s fourth season, the Browns were 11-5 and made the playoffs. When they stumbled to a 5-11 record in the following year, he was fired.

Belichick didn’t give up; instead he went back to work under his tutor, Bill Parcels, under whom he’d previously coached for eight seasons with the New York Giants. Paul Katzeff wrote in Investor’s Business Daily, “Rather than mope about his lesser position, he worked to improve on past weaknesses. He studied successful coaches to glean their secrets. Then he broke down what he learned into concrete actions: He delegated. He emphasized character. He stretched his creativity.” He got a second chance, and earned a place in football history, after Robert Kraft hired him as head coach of the Patriots in 2000.

ESPN has a “30 for 30” documentary beginning Thursday 2/1/2018 about these to men called “The Two Bills.” For more info, click here.

Since becoming head coach of the New England Patriots, Belichick has led the Patriots to 15 AFC East division titles, 12 appearances in the AFC Championship Game, and eight Super Bowl appearances. He was named the AP NFL Coach of the Year for the 2003, 2007, and 2010 seasons.

Like him or not, Bill Belichick is now considered one of the greatest NFL coaches of all time.

Persevere in the face of adversity.

There’s an obvious connection between what happened to him, and how he resurrected his career, and what has happened to many of you reading who are reading this message. Just because you are let go by one company doesn’t mean you can’t be successful in the same role in another company.

Friends, being let go by one organization can lead to much greater things – if you do the right things: seek God’s will, trust Him, keep a positive attitude, prepare for success, and work hard on high payoff activities. Like Belichick, no successful person has ever avoided rejection and setbacks; instead, he or she has persevered in the face of adversity. You can too.

Jesus rejected at Nazareth.

Jesus faced rejection far worse than Belichick. In fact, he faced rejection and even death from the earliest days of his public ministry. After John baptized him in the Jordan River, he went east into the desert where Satan tempted him for 40 days. According to Luke’s account, from there he headed home to Nazareth. He ticked off some folks at his hometown synagogue when he said he was the Messiah, and that they would reject him. He compared himself to Elijah and Elisha, who, after being rejected by the Israelites, ministered to Gentiles instead.

Jesus’ friends were so angry about his “blasphemy” they took him to a nearby cliff, intending to throw him off and kill him. Jesus somehow managed to get away. The first attempt on Jesus’ life was made shortly after he started his public ministry. He faced rejection and prevailed. With his help, we can too.

Here’s the story from Luke 4:14-30:

Jesus returned to Galilee in the power of the Spirit, and news about him spread through the whole countryside. He taught in their synagogues, and everyone praised him.

He went to Nazareth, where he had been brought up, and on the Sabbath day he went into the synagogue, as was his custom. And he stood up to read. The scroll of the prophet Isaiah was handed to him. Unrolling it, he found the place where it is written: “The Spirit of the Lord is on me, because he has anointed me to preach good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind, to release the oppressed, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.”

Then he rolled up the scroll, gave it back to the attendant and sat down. The eyes of everyone in the synagogue were fastened on him, and he began by saying to them, “Today this scripture is fulfilled in your hearing.”

All spoke well of him and were amazed at the gracious words that came from his lips. “Isn’t this Joseph’s son?” they asked.

Jesus said to them, “Surely you will quote this proverb to me: ‘Physician, heal yourself! Do here in your hometown what we have heard that you did in Capernaum.'”

“I tell you the truth,” he continued, “no prophet is accepted in his hometown. I assure you that there were many widows in Israel in Elijah’s time, when the sky was shut for three and a half years and there was a severe famine throughout the land. Yet Elijah was not sent to any of them, but to a widow in Zarephath in the region of Sidon. And there were many in Israel with leprosy in the time of Elisha the prophet, yet not one of them was cleansed–only Naaman the Syrian.”

All the people in the synagogue were furious when they heard this. They got up, drove him out of the town, and took him to the brow of the hill on which the town was built, in order to throw him down the cliff. But he walked right through the crowd and went on his way.

 Go prove ’em wrong.

The rejection we face as job seekers, and Bill Belichick faced as a head coach in the NFL, is minor compared to what Jesus faced. When a company lets you go, when an organization turns you down, when the HR department refuses to call you back – remember that Christ has empathy for you because he was rejected too. My prayer is that you will feel his presence, and be empowered to move forward in your job campaign.

Be like Bill Belichick; go prove ’em wrong.

See you on Friday at JobSeekers, where we prevail in the face of adversity, setbacks and rejection!

Copyright © 2005-2018 / Dave O’Farrell / All Rights Reserved

Five Principles of Job Search Success

job search successA few years ago a client said, “I want to find a job so I don’t have to work so hard!” I applauded her for realizing a simple truth. She applied the five principles of job search success and found a new position in the minimum amount of time. As a result of her hard work, she accepted a great position here in Peachtree City three months after she left her last position. She’s done well in her career since then.

One of my former colleagues liked to say, “Finding a job is a full-time job – with deferred compensation!” The project you are working on right now will have a payday at the end. How well you manage your project will determine your pay. Here’s the point: finding a job is hard work; make sure that the hard work you do is focused on results, not on activity. That means doing lots of networking (results) vs. responding to online ads (activity). Either one can tire you out. Use your energy to your best advantage.

God expects you to work hard. You will earn your pay. Consider the words of King Solomon in Ecclesiastes 9:10a, “Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with all your might, for in the grave, where you are going, there is neither working nor planning nor knowledge nor wisdom.”

With all this in mind, I’ve been thinking of people I’ve spoken to recently who are working hard without success. I offer the following five recommendations to them and to all of you:

  1. Avoid insanity. I think all of us are familiar with Einstein’s definition of insanity: Doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results. My question is: “If job boards aren’t working for you, why do you keep looking at them for hours and hours every day?” The same is true for your résumé, your cover letters, your position objective, your target companies, your interview responses, etc. If any of these aren’t working for you, if you’ve been looking without success, change your approach.
  2. Pray specifically. Try this: instead of praying, “Lord I need a job now. I pray that I’ll have one by the end of next week.” Pray something like this: “Lord put people and resources in my life to show me where I am and where you want me to be; and help me map out a strategy for getting there.” Imagine a farmer who prays on a spring morning, “Lord I need some corn now. I pray that when I go into the fields today the corn will be ripe for picking.” Then when he goes into the fields he exclaims, “Prayer isn’t working! I don’t see any corn!” If he were to pray specifically, what does he need to pray for? Think about this and apply it to your search.
  3. Heed wise counsel. As a career coach and leader of the JobSeekers ministry, nothing makes me crazier than people who hear the truth (what works) and do the opposite. I’ve dealt with extreme cases of people who knew where they were, knew where they wanted to be, knew how to get there (through networking) and yet they did not do what it took to achieve success. Friends, every book and every career coach in the U.S. will tell you that networking is the number one way salaried people find jobs. We can’t all be wrong.
  4. Work wholeheartedly. In Philippians 4:13 Paul says, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” I use this well-known verse in the meeting several times a year. At the Atlanta Bread Company one time, someone said the key word in that phrase is “do.” In other words, it doesn’t say, “Christ will do all things for me.” Don’t pray to God and wait for the phone to ring. Discipline yourself; keep to a work schedule every day of the week; do the right things; work wholeheartedly.
  5. Trust wholeheartedly. Sometimes it’s a test of faith. Job search is tough on you, your ego, your relationships, your finances, and your health; it can even be tough on your relationship with God. Don’t give up. Don’t give in. Remember that you are a child of God; as your loving parent he wants you to have the very best he has to offer. Learn everything you can from this experience and be ready, willing and able to move forward as he guides you. As rough as it is now, job search is a temporary state; there are brighter and better days ahead.

The bottom line is that to be successful in search you have to work smart and work hard. Trust in the Lord and work wholeheartedly, and you will succeed. Do everything YOU can do to find a job, and leave to God what only HE can do.

See you this Friday at JobSeekers, where we trust in the Lord – and work wholeheartedly!

Copyright © 2005-2018 / Dave O’Farrell / All Rights Reserved