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April 18, 2011

One Shot One Win

In the last several weeks clients have presented some problems they were facing in their careers. People often ask me what we do. I probably could give them better answers over the years but what we like to do is help them solve career problems. Who is a good client for us? I feel that someone who knows they have a problem, acknowledges that they cannot figure out a solution on their own and wants to partner with us to find a solution or set of solutions related to career transition.

Brook researched us on Linked In, asked us a few questions and let us know that she needed help. She wanted to work with an experienced advisor and coach because she had one lead with one company and didn’t want to “screw it up” with this company.

Dice

Here is what she needed to do:

Improve Her Career Transition Game Overall – Brook’s dilemma and overall need was to become the best she could be in the transition process. She didn’t hate her current job but called the role “limiting” and she shared with us that there would be no foreseeable growth. Here are two major ways we helped her up her game and win her next career opportunity.

New Resume, Cover Letter, Online and Interview Strategy – Brook came to us with an okay resume. Okay is not good enough and wasn’t for her target companies. Before we helped reinvent, her resume and cover letter more or less looked liked a history lesson of mundane duties with a few specific projects and accomplishments. To create her new documents,, we interviewed her extensively, conceived of a new MS Word based and keyword focused online strategy. Brook knew the basics of interviewing.

She said: “I know I have interviewed pretty well before because I got my current job without your help but I am now looking to move into and closer to the six figure mark and my interview game needs to improve. I can’t just be okay or above average anymore. I need to be better. I know this company. It’s going to be grueling and they are going to be tough on me.”

Preparation for Motivation and Small Talk – We also needed to learn about her motivation for looking at new positions outside of her current company when she supposedly had “a good job” according to most people. But Brook, like many of our clients, wants and wanted more out of her career. Most people who currently have a job need to clearly plan out answers to some interview questions about motivation, their multi-faceted value proposition and how they fit into a company’s culture.

Brook says: “You guys asked me a lot of professional questions but you also pushed me on the ‘small talk’ stuff that you know and I now they want to know about. That was so helpful to me. One of the best connections I made was walking with my host to meet with my potential new boss. She told a funny story and I laughed. She said she liked my sense of humor.” Brook shared with us how the interview was tough but also how some of the “in between” talks with people might have made a big difference too.

Interview Depth Needed – So she chose to work with us on all the big picture and obvious pieces to her marketing plan – resumes, cover letters, core interview strategy. But she also chose to go deeper into preparation. So we suggested and started developing more content for her interview answers, more alternative answers and then drilled deeper into what she needed to know about the potentially grueling interview schedule for the more executive jobs and positions.

Brook reported: “The result of this preparation allowed me to talk to the human resources folks and also to two executives who made the ultimate decision to hire me. I think that by pushing myself to prepare I really sent the message I was ready for this interview. I know that my competition was not as prepared.”

The Results?

She interviewed and won about a $14,000 raise and an ideal next career opportunity with growth. She received a better bonus plan, bringing her close to six figures and better vacation schedule. She only sent out one application to earn her next position – one shot one win.  It can’t happen all the time but it is nice when it does.

Brook remarked: “A friend asked me why I went to all ‘that effort’ to try to get a job with one company while I was preparing for this next interview. I just told them I guess it was worth it, huh?”

Image Credit: instantshift.com

Posted at 11:18 AM in ,

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