You are more than Your Job!
You may be feeling angry right now, or sad, or betrayed. Don’t worry! You are going to be in a better situation than you ever thought possible. Stay calm about the loss. You are in the midst of a miracle. Get excited, about the future! The best part of your life is about to begin.
You are Still a VERY VALUABLE PERSON!
Before we start it is important for you to know who you are, so say the following out loud as often as you can:
I’m Quick! I’m Sharp! I’m Bright! I’m Smart! I’m Rich and Good Lookin” and a Major Blessing! Yes you are!!!
Think about it. In some ways we have all been stuck in dead end jobs that really didn’t allow us to improve our lot in life. We now have the opportunity (even though it was not by our choice) to break out and find a position that will allow us to be much happier! Employers are desperate to obtain trusted qualified employees!
Don’t forget: you don’t just have to take any old job. Instead, you can now get the job you’ve always wanted. Yes, it’s a little scary, since others may be counting on you for support. But, don’t look at the negative. Keep your eye on the positive.
(*** You may wonder where I got this expertise. Any questions are answered at the bottom of the article including my position with a professional recruiting firm.)
Hope for the Unemployed!
My purpose in writing this to you is to keep you from making all the mistakes I have made when I was unemployed. Here are some simple ideas that will help, as you search for the position you have always wanted. They include the following:
I. Most Often Asked Interview Questions
II. The Importance of Applications
III. How to Dress for an Interview
Key: Offers are Extended Most Often to Those Who are Best Qualified and through Preparation and Practice Present Themselves Best!
Where to Get a Job
Surprise! Statistics show that only 14% of all jobs are found looking at Want Ads or on line – only 10% from Employment Agencies. 2/3 of all jobs are found by word of mouth! That is why you need to learn a Short Story that you can say at the drop of a hat. It is the real key to finding a great job quickly.
The application is the first step toward obtaining your benefits, so if not filled out perfectly, can get lost on a secretary’s desk. Fill it out completely! When answering questions with no good answer simply put N/A – Not Applicable. “Do you still beat your wife? N/A”
Find, and copy an application form on line from some company. At your leisure fill it out completely and accurately. Then from now on, keep it with you to use as a guide as you fill out on-site applications for employers. Now, you’re in control! Remember: Neatness & Spelling Count!
Preparing for a Job Interview
A) If possible visit the location before the interview date and time, so you can locate it easily and know how long it will take you to get there. Being on time is an indication of how you’ll perform once you get the job.
B) Take 3 clean neat protected copies of your resume, 2 copies of your references as well as your filled out sample application.
C) Make certain you have recently bathed, used deodorant, combed your hair (if you have any), teeth brushed (if you have any), clothes ironed, shoes shined, and fresh breath. (Do not wear cologne/perfume, since the person could be allergic or just doesn’t care for your favorite fragrance.)
D) Wear clothing just up one level from clothing normally worn on the job you’re applying for. (If a skirt & blouse is appropriate – wear a dress. If you would wear blue jeans, wear a nice pair of slacks, etc.)
E) Before during and after an interview, just say no thank you to the offer of a cup of coffee, hot chocolate or cigarette. Don’t take the chance of burning a hole in a couch or spilling on a desk, ruining papers. Remember, you can’t tell an interviewer about yourself if your mouth is full!
Jobe Interview Questions
Think about it! In an interview seldom will you be asked about the 2nd Law of Thermo-dynamics, or how your favorite movie. They’re going to ask you simple, easy-to-answer questions that relate to your possible performance success on the job. (They are gravely concerned the person they hire is a dud!) If you are prepared, your interview will go great. Then you can ask questions to see if you really want to work for them!
REMEMBER: DON’T SAY anything, Anything, ANYTHING bad about your previous employers! If you do, you will be the loser! I speak from personal experience!
Question 1: What happened at your previous job?
Good Answer: Tell the truth without making you or your former company look bad. (My position was eliminated – or – the company had a downturn in their business – or – the company was sold, etc. their assets. I worked hard for them and felt I was part of their profitability. I made a lot of friends there, so, I wish them only the best!
Question 2: If they offered you a job, would you go back to work there?
Good Answer: I don’t think so. I’m really looking forward to becoming part of a new team and building a new professional life with a new organization. I’m excited about all the possibilities of working for your company.
Question 3: What is your greatest strength?
Bad Answer: I can shoot the eye out of a deer at 40 paces is NOT a good answer! They’ll know you’ll miss work during deer hunting season.
Good Answer: Tell them – but make it apply to your job. I am an experienced worker who is never late to work and seldom misses a day. When you hire me, you are getting a seasoned veteran who gives 100% effort.
Question 4: What is your greatest weakness?
Great Answer: Tell them something that used to be a weakness. Example: I don’t know anything about Accounts Payable. So when a position opened up for that job, I grabbed the opportunity. There was nothing like on-the-job training from a very demanding boss. (They will say “Gosh that sounds like a strength.” Do not say “how perceptive of you.”)
Question 5: You appear to be over qualified. Why do you want this job?
(Motive: In their mind they think you want too much money.)
Great Answer: Thank you for recognizing my skills. However, I am just looking for an opportunity. I’m an excellent learner, a hard worker, and hope to move up in your organization.
Question 6: It appears you are under-qualified.
Good Answer: Actually, I am a quick learner, hard worker and don’t watch the clock. You will quickly count me as one of your very best employees.
Question 7: How much did you make at your last job?
Bad Answer: $11.32 per hour or $23,932.76 a year. (This shows all you care about is money, not about the job.)
Good Answer: Between $11-$12 or in the middle 20s.
Question 8: How do others view you?
Good Answer: A quick learner, hard worker, and a good and honest friend. However, I am usually too busy to carry on much of a conversation.
Question 9: We have (or don’t have) a union here. How do you feel about it?
Good Answer: It makes no difference to me. I work hard with or without them.
Question 10: Are you willing to be Transferred?
Good Answer: Don’t answer ANY question with an answer that will eliminate you from consideration. Instead, say I am open to any possibility.
Question 11: Tell me about Yourself?
Answer: This is the hardest question to answer. This where you need to recite your Short Story taught in the next section.
Your Short Story
This is the most important question you will be asked in an Interview, because it is your chance to shine. Therefore, take lots of time to prepare this answer. This is also the same statement you can make when speaking to anyone who might have a lead of a job. Yes! It must be memorized, and flow very smoothly. Don’t tell them “well I like cars and going to movies.” Tell them what will bear your their decision to hire you!
A. Structure your statement in the following 3 sections:
1) Current Situation 2) Early History up to Today 3) Your Significant Achievements
B. Your script should last between 2-4 minutes.
For ___ years I have been a __JOB DESCRIPTION__ for __COMPANY NAME___, _______ explain what they did. At the end of __WHEN___ was sold to a company outside the industry. The new owner eliminated nearly 40% of all jobs, including mine.
I was born in __CITY & STATE___, where I attended high school and junior college. I received my degree from _____________(COLLEGE OR UNIVERSITY) in __CITY & STATE ___ where I majored in _____________.
After graduation I worked as a __ JOB TITLE __ for (COMPANY) in (CITY & STATE), where I _____________________________________( DESCRIPTION OF ACHIEVEMENTS). After ____ years I was offered the __ JOB TITLE __ at (COMPANY) in (CITY & STATE). There I __________________________ (DESCRIPTION OF ACHIEVEMENTS). However, the drive was too long leaving me no time with my family, so I jumped at the opportunity to work at RECENT EMPLOYER, where I progressed from a __ JOB TITLE __ to __ JOB TITLE __. I was responsible for the __________________ (DESCRIPTION OF ACHIEVEMENTS). I can __(ALL YOUR SKILLS) __, as well as (lesser skills). THAT LEADS ME UP TO MY CURRENT SITUATION.
Not much personal stuff in there is there? Nope! They mainly want to know what you can do for them. They usually don’t care that you are the youngest of 3 children; your brother is in the Air Force, and your father gigs frogs for a living.
C. If you are speaking with a friend or acquaintance who may be able to point you in the direction of a job, you can always add the following VERBATIM. It will take the pressure off them to give you an answer:
“Now, I know that you don’t have, or even know of a job that I would be suited for, but I wonder if you might think of 3 people that might be interested in my background.” (Key here is to not say another word. Let them talk as you take notes.) Make an appointment to see the people they name and tell them your story. Give the same short story, beginning with “I was talking with Fred over at XYZ company, and he suggested you might be interested in my background.)
D. Now PRACTICE, PRACTICE, PRACTICE. First, practice in front of a mirror. Then, do it in front of your children (even if they are babies), your spouse, your T.V. or your parents. You will feel like a fool, BUT you can make mistakes and it won’t cost you a job!
Your Job References
Don’t expect your old employer to give you much of a reference. To protect themselves companies usually only give generic information like verification of employment dates & last job classification.
So you will need 3 to 6 references from prominent people who think you are Special. Sorry, letters are not very helpful. Can you imagine of a letter of “un-recommendation?”
They should be . . .
A) Someone with whom you have worked
B) Respected and Credible
C) Positive and Supportive and can Articulate your skills well
D) Someone who can be fairly easily contacted
E) Someone who gave their permission to use them as a reference. (You should contact them to review key points of your interaction (remember when we worked together to build that brain surgery machine?), then keep in touch with them to let them know when you find a job.
KEY: Resist giving out their names unless you would like and feel you have a good chance to get that particular job, and references are requested. Protect these people from unwanted phone calls. They are as valuable as GOLD! Put other good names on the application blanks. Save your best for the job you want.
Your Job Resume
This is the basic document from which everything else should flow. For the information contained in it, will be regurgitated in all other communications, including answering interview questions, broadcast letters and hopefully from your References.
Your resume should be a reflection of you, your abilities, responsibilities, and significant accomplishments. This quality piece should be very honest, NOT flashy (pink paper with gold leaf), but must arrive neat, clean and sharp. It doesn’t need to tell everything about you, because its real purpose is – – – – to get you an interview where you can interact and sell your skills!
This document will help you the most when it is filled with accomplishments. Sentences should start with an action word (Wrote, Invented, Innovated); be easy to read; and have 3 line paragraphs (max 4). (Remember employers must read through hundreds just to find the resumes of the qualified. This they have to do as well as performing their normal jobs! Often, they have others screen resumes, and pass on the ones containing key words, or skills.)
You are Still a VERY VALUABLE PERSON !! YOU ARE A SEASONED EMPLOYEE!
May God Bless You as you begin your new career!
(*** At one time in my career, after 2 years between jobs with no steady income, God got me a job with a company that helped others get jobs. This company no longer exists since it was gobbled up by a larger company which in turn was again acquired by several others. God has a wonderful sense of humor! This included counseling as well as writing hundreds of resumes. I promised the Lord that I’d never charge for writing a resume, so have done well over 50 just for friends and fellow church members. Positions received range from executive and clerical to skilled labor.)