I've only been working with Twitter for a few days now, my username is @ichigorno. I haven't had the opportunity to write any cover letters as of yet, but here is my most up-to-date resume. Resume So, am I money or not? Thanks Robert _______________________________________________________________________________ Dear Robert, I think you do have money potential. However, at this point, I'm only going to give you 3.0. Why? Because you're a seasoned professional with have a good amount of experience and it's not being showcased well in the tools you are currently using! You've got skills and talents but they are not being highlighted properly. Here's what I suggest: Re RESUME: You've created what's called a functional resume. You are trying to focus the reader on your strengths. I think the intent is great, but the execution needs work. As an IT professional with a background in project management, you know that to execute something well, you've got to understand your user's needs and make sure it meets them. Resumes are the same. You need to offer a hiring manager the ability to get a clear sense of who you are while making them feel confident you'd be capable of doing the job. Right now, your resume is sending mixed messages in the following ways: 1) The new rules of resume design stress that you do not make biased statements of self-promotion. Your resume should only contain facts. So, listing at the top that you are "Creative Innovator/Problem Solver/Process Improvement/High Ethics" is not effective. You are stating your opinion of yourself. The hiring manager wants to be the judge of your skills in this area as compared to their company and job description. Also, you use words like "strong" and "successful" to describe yourself. Again, this is your opinion and should be left off. Your opportunity to sell yourself in that fashion occurs in your cover letter. Think 'soft sell' when it comes to your resume. 2) The summary paragraph about yourself is too long and actually should be removed all together. Almost every resume designer I know right now is telling their clients to drop this kind of summary. Hiring managers want to see bullets with major skill sets with the years of experience next to each one so they can quickly make a mental checklist that says, "yes, he's got what we need." Moreover, you mention working for Fortune 100's and yet no where on your resume can the reader tie that statement back to your work history. In short, the paragraph, if it gets read, is going to be questioned. 3) Your key skills should not be in paragraph form. It's too hard too read and again, is subjective in the way it is written. I'd remove this as well. 4) Your education is your strongest asset and yet it is buried in the middle of the resume and hard to find. The fact that you have the MIS should be front and center at the top, as well as the rest of your education in clear bullets that draw the eye in. 5) Your 'Selected Accomplishments' section is good, but needs to be formatted so the reader can assess each one line by line. Also, think of ways to quantify each accomplishment so it stands out more (see next point for explanation why). 6) Your work experience needs accomplishments tied to it. You should be able to list 1-2 bullets under each one outlining quantifiable achievements while working at each one. It's a proven fact that numbers are the most memorable thing on a resume. You need to use stats and figures to draw attention to the depth of your work experience. I really think if you can revamp your resume as suggested above, it will get more than just a glance by hiring managers. Re Twitter: I know you just got started on Twitter but I do hope you find time to explore it more. As a tech person, a lot of people in your industry are getting connected on Twitter. Also, you can build a wonderful professional brand by creating a Twitter feed that would let potential hiring manager see how technically savvy you are. Simply focus on posting comments and links to articles that are related to your field and they'll know you are serious about your profession. That being said, I would find a professional picture of yourself and put it up in place of the one you have right now. If you'd like to have a separate Twitter account for fun, then feel free to use your current one where you can make the picture whatever you want. But, I'd then suggest you create a second, more professional one that has your own photo, an easy to recognize username and a good stream of career-related content - that's the one you should use for job search. This tool called "Twitter for your Career" can help you understand how to leverage it properly. Additional Suggestions: Once you get the above in good working order, I'd suggest you set up your LinkedIn account and get networking. And of course, Facebook is always a good networking option is well. People need to not just know you are looking for work, you need to help them help you find work. This means reaching out individually and saying 'hello' to past colleagues, friends and family. The more networking you do, the more you can spread the word about the kind of work you want to do. Getting job leads and landing interviews through social media use is not a random occurrence anymore. But it's not going to happen if you don't get in the game! I hope this info helps. You have such great potential to be serious money - you just need to invest in yourself!
Have you interviewed for a job and got caught off guard with the salary question? Do you struggle to identify a reasonable salary range that you feel comfortable with? If so, we're here to show you the right way to conduct salary research!
These days, the hiring manager or recruiter will most likely ask about your salary expectations in the first or early round of the interview process. If you aren’t ready for this conversation, it can make you look unprepared, diffident, or worse….costing you the entire job opportunity.
So, let's show you how to avoid that and talk about your desired salary with confidence!
In this training, you’ll learn how to:
- Figure out the correct sites to explore while doing salary research
- Identify the tools you need to figure out your market value
- Choose a salary range that you feel comfortable with
Join our CEO, J.T. O'Donnell, and Director of Training Development & Coaching, Christina Burgio, for this live event on Wednesday, September 28th at 12 pm ET.
CAN'T ATTEND LIVE? That's okay. You'll have access to the recording and the workbook after the session!
How do you know if you understand something?
I am a non-technical person working in an IT company. My colleagues will often tell me something technical. Sometimes I understand what they are saying. Sometimes I have no idea what they are talking about. Sometimes I think I understand what they are telling me when they are telling me, but then later I realize that I don’t understand it at all.
Understanding is complex. As communicators and trainers, we need to think about how understanding works to communicate and train effectively.
We are all communicators and trainers at one time or another.
What Is Understanding?
A quick Google search of “understanding” does not provide a clear answer.
Researchgate, quoting “Newton, 2000,” says, “Understanding implies being able to think, act and apply the knowledge in different ways in various situations.”
Robert Ryshke, writing in “gse.harvard.edu,” states, “Understanding a topic of study is a matter of being able to perform in a variety of thought-demanding ways with the topic.”
Artseducator.org says something very similar: “Understanding is a matter of being able to do a variety of thought-provoking things with a topic.”
Let’s Ask Again: How Do You Know If You Understand Something?
If someone explains something to you and then asks you if you understand it, you will probably reply based on how you feel.
As a trainer, you may well look at your trainees’ faces to see if they understand the material. When they don’t understand, they may look uncertain or give you the “What are you talking about?” look. (My two-year-old niece is very good at that!)
The feeling that you understand is sometimes deceptive. This is why educators use “output activities” or tests to see if trainees really understand.
How Can We Test Understanding?
The worst thing you can do is ask: “Do you understand?” It puts the burden of understanding on the trainee. If he doesn’t understand, it’s the trainer’s fault. She needs to explain the content in a different way.
When learning in groups, trainees may not say they do not understand for fear of looking stupid in front of their colleagues.
There are a number of options you can build into your training plan. These options are based on Wiggins and McTighe’s “6 Facets of Understanding”:
- Ability to explain the content: This has to be more than just repeating the material verbatim. Let’s imagine you are teaching sales agents a new sales script. If your trainees create a mind map to explain the material they received in a PowerPoint presentation, they are reformatting the information and engaging with it at a deeper level than they would by repeating it.
- Interpreting the content: To see how well your agents might understand the sales script, ask them to explain it to their colleagues as if the other person was five years old, their grandmother, or to an alien from another planet. Their challenge is to explain it to someone who does not have the same contextual knowledge that they do.
- Applying the content: When teaching your sales team the new script, this will include getting them to role play it. One trainee will be the salesperson and the other the customer. Role plays can include “what would you do if…?” scenarios to practice dealing with different types of customers and handling different objections.
- Having a perspective based on the content: You can build this into the role plays by asking the “customer” to play a specific kind of customer and behave as this kind of person might behave. In a business-to-consumer scenario, this might involve playing roles representing different demographics. In a business-to-business context, this might mean playing the roles of customers in different verticals who have different requirements and different ways of behaving. Builders have different needs and behave in different ways from bankers.
- Empathize: When adopting roles in the role-play training, ask trainees to imagine how customers might feel and put those emotions into the training. This could include angry and aggressive customers. This gives trainees playing the salesperson’s role the chance to test their skills in handling an angry customer, while it gives the trainee playing the “angry customer” the chance to imagine how the angry customer is feeling, and adjust how she handles him accordingly.
- Have self-knowledge: Some trainees may find this uncomfortable since trainees need to examine their own reactions and feelings towards the content. For salespeople, particularly after they have role-played a demanding conversation, this may help them to understand and manage their own emotional responses when facing, for example, angry customers.
The Ball’s In Your Court!
Are you planning some training? How do you know that you understand the content well enough to train it? What questions are you afraid people will ask? How do you plan to test your trainees’ understanding?
I’d love to hear more about it! Drop me a line!
The following article may be both relevant and useful: Explaining How Things Work: How To Do It And Why It Matters
If you're wondering how you're going to get where you want to be in your career, there are some simple steps you can take that will help you create your own career development plan.
Let's not be confused by the word “simple." Sometimes the simplest of concepts or steps can be tough to do because they require some intense thinking and effort. Yet, your think time and effort are an investment in your future and career happiness, which make it all very worthwhile to plan your career growth today.
1. Figure Out Your Destination
As with all efforts, you must be clear about your direction when you create your own career development plan. You don't take a road trip without knowing where you want to end up. You also don't need to overly complicate this task. I think the following questions are helpful in thinking about your destination.
Where do you want your career to be in two years?
I like this question because this window is close enough to your current reality that it's easy to visualize.
Where do you want your career to be in five years?
If you see that your two-year goal is merely a step in an overall direction, then this question helps you define a longer-term career growth goal. Sometimes it's difficult to see that far out in time as life and different opportunities present themselves and can cause you to reset your plans. That's okay, but it's good to be looking "two steps ahead."
What makes these targets resonant for you?
Don't make a goal just for the sake of making one. You need a goal that helps to motivate you into action. If you're making a goal based on what someone else wants, it also isn't going to be that compelling for you. Being clear on your direction means being clear that this direction is inspiring and motivational, and knowing what is driving you to it.
2. Do A Gap Analysis
A gap analysis is where you figure out the differences in the qualifications between where you are right now and your two-year goal or next step. Using a job posting or job description for the position you are aiming at is a good way to get specific information about the skills and experience that are expected. I think it is good to get more than one job description (perhaps one from your company and one from a competitor) in order to ensure you aren't missing any key items during your analysis.
Go through the job description line item by line item and rate your current state of skills, education, or experience to what is listed. Your rating system can be as simple as 1-10, with 10 a perfect match and one being completely missing. As you rate, make notes about your thought process for future reference.
Once you have completed this exercise, identify all of the items where there is anywhere from a fair amount to a substantial amount of development that is needed. Look for commonalities and clump those together as a category. You will discover that there will be themes to your gaps.
Also, don't get too compulsive about where you don't think you're a perfect match but think you have fairly developed skills. If they are mostly present, they will make you a competitive candidate and shouldn't require too much development attention. You now have a list of development items.
3. Create Your Development PlanBigstock
You are now fully armed with a clear two-year goal and all the details of where and what you need to develop to get you where you want to go. Your plan will be best if you can consult with your boss and/or a mentor to help you with ideas on how to get the skills you need to add.
There may need to be some logical order to a few of the items on your list. Sometimes you need to do X before you can do Y. Make these among the highest priority items so you can accomplish these things and move on to others. Usually, there are multiple ways of accumulating the skills you need for career growth.
You may also want to have multiple ways of beefing up your skill set to add depth to it. An example is if you want to move to a project management position, you may want to get a certification and also ask for project responsibilities. Initially, these may be small, which is fine; they will give you an opportunity to grow and learn. In addition, you may need to research various ways to get the skills you need to grow in your career.
Once your research is done, it will give you ideas on how you can approach these items. You need dates. You need to keep yourself accountable to your plan. And the best way to do that is to give yourself a "start by" date.
You can't predict how long or how much work you will have to do in order to develop the skill at the level you need, but you do have control over the action you take to get started. Keep track. You need to pay attention to your career development plan a minimum of twice per year. This will allow you to stay focused on your progress and remind you of next steps.
Career development is the sort of thing that you can easily forget about until you wake up one day to realize you have gone nowhere and aren't having fun. You are responsible for where you go in your career. With a little bit of planning, you can accomplish great things.
Need more help with your career?
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This article was originally published at an earlier date.