Showing posts from November, 2010

5 Practices of SMART Job Hunters

Since starting this blog back in 2004, when (according to my friend and fellow career blogger Alexandra Levit) I was one of the first voices blogging about career issues, the blogosphere has exploded with a plethora of wonderful career experts and resources.

In fact, it's somewhat overwhelming. How do fledgling job seekers sift and sort through it all to discover the most reliable voices and the best ideas that will help them find meaningful re-employment?

First, let me list a few voices that I admire and follow. Then, I will outline five practices that I frequently recommend to job hunters.

Some reliable and generous career experts:

Alexandra Levit = her blog is called Water Cooler Wisdom

Abby Kohut = her blog is Absolutely Abby

Hannah Morgan = her blog is Career Sherpa (I love that metaphor!)

Nick Corcodilos = his blog is Ask The Headhunter

Donna Svei = her blog is Avid Careerist

And the Career Realism blog

Note: There are many many more that have a lot of good advice for today'…

Leading In Chaotic Times

"May you live in interesting times." A curse, right? According to wikipedia, it may derive from a Chinese saying. That saying is itself interesting:

~ "It's better to be a dog in a peaceful time than a man in a chaotic period."

Chaotic times, eh? Surely we are living in chaotic times. A period of change, stress, ambiguity, even confusion, leaving many bewildered and lost.

What sort of leader do we need in a time such as this?

Lately, our federal leaders have been putting the emphasis on the need to communicate more clearly. While I would never disagree with that, there is another capability we sorely need.

Here's a true story. A "rising star" manager was at the front of the room giving a high-stakes presentation to a senior level audience when a slide came up with a typo on it. The word was supposed to be "new" but it appeared as "now." This young hi-po was so adept that he instantly incorporated the typo into his talk, delighti…

The Batting Coach Revisited: The Incredible Power of Coaching

Five years ago, I wrote a blog entry called "The Batting Coach" that it's now time to revisit. So, first a republication of the original post, followed by new material on the incredible power of coaching.

The Batting Coach (first published in 2005)

As a Little Leaguer, I was not much of a ball-player. A fact that bothered me, but also bothered my dad. My father was an uber-athlete, a champion in his youth, and a coach, referee and umpire in his middle-age. Sport was everything to him. And four out of his five sons followed suit.

The fifth son, yours truly, was the exception. More of an egghead than the others, I was best at academic performance, and a shambles on the ball field. I had no skills and little discernible aptitude.

My dad was encouraging but he tended to invest his energies in the other better players. One evening at baseball practice, an assistant coach named Ed approached me. I was pretty amazed that he was even speaking to me since I was a third-string…

Twentysomethings Go to Work

Recently at the Employee Engagement Network, Bob Wiebe of Enliven Consulting asked this question:

"Young people are given bad press in some circles for not meeting employer needs. Perhaps you have encountered the young person who is rude or inattentive or sloppy, or who has what (used to be) called a poor "work ethic". How does one engage the young person (teen, early 20's) in their work?"

As the proud parent of two twenty-something sons, one who has graduated from college and entered the workforce, and one who is a senior in college, I jumped in and made the following contribution to the discussion.

What do twentysomethings want at work? My 23 year old stopped by this weekend, so I grabbed the opportunity to put the question to him. He said:

- I'll work hard for you (the employer), but this job is not my life. I've got dreams and I'm going somewhere.

- Let me use my creativity and bring my personality to the work. Don't treat me with a cookie cu…

Now That's What I Call Leadership!

So much is written about leadership! Qualities of leaders. Traits of leaders. It's all interesting, to be sure. But, at the end of the day, you may be thinking: If you want to be a leader, what should you do?

There is wisdom to be found in the old saying "I'll know it when I see it." In other words, what do we see actual leaders doing?

The good news for students of leadership is that there are real life lessons all around us, each and every day. Take President Obama for example. He acknowledged the other day that he and the Dems took a shellacking in the mid-term election of November 2. He went on to say about leadership that:

"...leadership is not just's a matter of persuading people. And giving them confidence and bringing them together. And setting a tone. And making an argument that people can understand."

His main point (and his learning) was that his message did not get through.

Looking at his statement, it seems he is talking, at leas…