Archive for the ‘Personal Branding’ Category

Recruiter LinkedIn Secret: Follow Companies Where…

January 24, 2013

George_Blomgren_med - picGuest Expert, George Blomgren,
MRA, The Management Association

The other day, a recruiter colleague shared a tip with me. He told me that when a candidate applies for a job with his company, if that candidate otherwise looks qualified, he looks to see if the candidate is following his company on LinkedIn. If not, he won’t consider that candidate.

Rather an extreme attitude, but it illustrates a best practice. Recruiters assume that the main reason you follow a company on LinkedIn is that you want to work there. Smart recruiters use their company’s followers on LinkedIn as the “low hanging fruit” for their hiring needs. Take a moment to follow the companies you want to work for!

Editor’s note: Great tip George! The same holds true if you want to get on a company’s radar for your business. And if you’re running a business and want to attract great employees, ensure your company has a company page on LinkedIn.

George Blomgren is the  Director of Recruiting Solutions for MRA – The Management Association. George has 20+ years of talent acquisition (aka recruiting),  MarComm, IT, and operations experience. 

How to Work with Executive Recruiters: Interviews

December 4, 2012

Guest Expert, Pamela Atwood,
Executive Recruiter

Part 2 of our executive recruiter series: How to prepare for recruiter-coordinated interviews.

  • Do your Homework.   Research the Company including all people you will be interviewing with.  Linked-In and Google are good resources here.
  • ALWAYS over prepare.
  • Communicate freely with the recruiter.  Phone them immediately after ALL interviews to share feedback.
  • Listen intently and learn from your recruiter’s coaching and feedback.
  • Plan for your interview just as you would a sales call. Interviewers notice when candidates are well prepared (and when they’re not!).
  • There are three parts to an interview: 1) Rapport Building (the opener); 2) Conversation (the middle).  You MUST prepare questions beforehand you can ask during the interview; 3) The Close.  Ask for the position if in fact you are truly interested.

Relationships are built on trust and communication over time. It’s important to keep recruiters up to date on your interviews to ensure they can negotiate the best deal for you.

Pamela Atwood, MBA, is President of Atwood Associates, an executive recruiting firm.  She brings more than 20 years’ experience in the healthcare arena, including recruiting, management, marketing, and business development. She is also serves as adjunct professor in Upper Iowan University’s Health Care Services and Human Resources degree programs. Pamela chairs the American Heart Association “Go Red for Women” Executive Leadership Team.

How to Work with Executive Recruiters – Part 1

November 26, 2012

Guest Expert, Pamela Atwood,
Executive Recruiter

Many employers hire Executive Recruiters to help them fill positions, which may not be posted. Developing relationships with recruiters can be advantageous, as they may contact you whenever a search emerges that matches your background. As with any good relationship, it takes time to build. Here are a few tips to help you effectively work with executive recruiters:

Send a letter and a copy of your resume to recruiters who specialize in your field. For example, firms that specialize in sales and sales leadership within the health care field.
Be responsive and helpful to recruiters that contact you. If the position isn’t a fit for you or the timing isn’t right to make a change, refer the recruiter to others you know and could recommend for the position. Recruiters remember which candidates were helpful.
Be honest. Never exaggerate your capabilities or attempt to mislead a recruiter in any manner. [Editor's Note: Same goes for any employer!]
Have a professional resume ready.
• In addition to your resume, have professional references and letters of recommendation to share with your executive recruiter that paint a professional picture of your accomplishments, how you work best, and what type of culture is the best fit for you.
Share your salary history openly. Also know your desired salary and ideal salary range.

Relationships are built on trust and communication over time.  In today’s dynamic hiring culture, most executive positions  (approximately 70%) are found through networking and that includes working with recruiters.  So isn’t it worth your time to build relationships with Executive Recruiters in your field?

Pamela Atwood, MBA, is President of Atwood Associates, an executive recruiting firm.  She brings more than 20 years’ experience in the healthcare arena, including recruiting, management, marketing, and business development. She is also serves as adjunct professor in Upper Iowan University’s Health Care Services and Human Resources degree programs. Pamela chairs the American Heart Association “Go Red for Women” Executive Leadership Team.

Don’t be a Networking Turkey

November 20, 2012

It’s Thanksgiving week and soon New Year’s Eve with more parties in between – friends, family, and office parties. A great time to network. And a time to avoid being a Networking Turkey. Let’s talk about the “Don’ts,” what NOT to do during holiday gatherings that will help you maintain your rock star status and avoid becoming a Networking Turkey.

The List:

  • Don’t drink too much. I know it’s the holidays. When at a work-related function, keep drinks to a minimum. No need for the walk of shame later.
  • Don’t dress or act provocatively – especially at work parties. People have long memories and smartphones with cameras.
  • Don’t ask for a job during holiday gatherings. It’s not the right time or place.
  • Don’t tag pics of your friends drinking or doing other embarrassing things during holiday parties on Facebook, Twitter or other social networks.
  • Don’t let your friends post those types of pics of you either!

Digital dirt lives forever online. You’ll need to untag crazy photos and ask friends to remove them (which they may or may not do) or bury the dirt with other on-brand content (such as blog posts). Despite taking these types of actions, digital dirt can still get found and be bad for your career. Better to be proactive and not have it happen in the first place.

Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

Ageism: Are you an Al Bundy or a Betty White?

November 13, 2012

By George Blomgren, Guest Expert

A lot of older job seekers I work with are concerned that ageism is hurting their job search. And they may very well be right. But I believe the decisions we make through our lives have a profound impact on how we are perceived once we reach the point where employers may be biased against us.

Let’s face it, employers aren’t generally biased against our age, they are biased against what they associate with age. Consider two stereotypes for older workers. We probably all know at least one of each of these types:

The Al Bundy Curmudgeon. He’s grumpy and unpleasant to work with. He’s seen it all and is contemptuous of everything. Millennials? No work ethic! Technology? Who has time to keep up with all this new crap! Social media? Don’t get me started! A new way to do something at work? I’ve been doing it this way for 30 years and I have nothing to learn from you!

The Betty White. She’s hip, she’s funny, she knows the difference between Twitter and Reddit. She embraces new technology (and all the other changes life has thrown at her) with enthusiasm and zeal. She’s open minded but discriminating, and brings a wealth of life and professional experience to everything. She’s always happy to share her wisdom, but she respects that everyone has his or her own ideas and perspectives. She’s an invaluable resource to employers. [Editor's Note: Betty jumped on Twitter at age 90. At 88.5, she appeared on Saturday Night Live as a result of Facebook votes.]

The fact is, we get to choose which stereotype we resemble as we age. Do we keep open minds? Do we keep up with the latest technologies? Do we work hard to find common ground with new generations and workers from different backgrounds? Are we receptive to new ideas and ways of doing things at work? Where we stand on matters like this is only too apparent to employers.

Which are you?

The fact that there are so many older workers who embody the “Curmudgeon” stereotype makes it harder for all of us “Betty Whites” by perpetuating employer’s biases. All the more reason we have to actively endeavor to avoid “hardening of the attitudes” and embrace your inner Betty.

George Blomgren is the  Director of Recruiting Solutions for MRA – The Management Association. George has more than 20 years of talent acquisition (aka recruiting), MarComm, technology, and operations experience. Prior to joining MRA, George ran the advertising and marketing department for one of the country’s fastest growing network of local employment web sites.


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