Thursday, November 29, 2012

Don't Worry about "Holiday Networking"--Make Connections and Have Fun!

So you made it through law school finals and headed home for the holidays.  Congratulations!  The only problem now is that your CSO (and everyone else for that matter) keeps telling you that you need to “network.”  Whether you have a job lined up or not, that word keeps buzzing around like an annoying gnat.  Don’t they know you are wiped out and the mere thought of having to do something else is going to send you right over to the edge?? 

“Networking” has become one of those insidious corporate buzz words that seems to be the panacea of all problems anyone might ever face. Because it has an official name, it seems unattainable by anyone that is not a perfect conversationalist or social butterfly. The word itself now seems filled with an undercurrent of wanting to get something from the other person – i.e. a job.  That’s a lot of pressure for both you and the other person!

Relax.  The holidays should not be filled with even more pressure and tasks.  It should be about having fun, reconnecting with old friends and family, and making new connections with interesting people.  Instead of focusing on networking, focus on connecting.

See full article here.

Monday, November 19, 2012

Interviewing Strategy Tips: STAR Method

Your actions and results define who you are in other people’s eyes, and being able to tell people about yourself through stories which put you in a good light is an extremely powerful way to show your value. Becoming an expert in short structured story telling is the best way to answer competency based and behavioral interview questions. The STAR Method is the easiest way to get it right under pressure.

Level 1 – The Basics of the STAR Model
Then STAR Story model contains these parts in order.
  1. Situation: Open with a brief description of the Situation and context of the story (who, what, where, when, how).
  2. Task: Explain the Task you had to complete highlighting any specific challenges or constraint (eg deadlines, costs, other issues).
  3. Action: Describe the specific Actions that you took to complete the task. These should highlight desirable traits without needing to state them (initiative, intelligence, dedication, leadership, understanding, etc.)
  4. Result: Close with the result of your efforts. Include figures to quantify the result if possible.

See full article here.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

4 Benefits of Mock Interviews


Mock interviews provide candidates with an opportunity to test out their interview skills with someone who isn’t evaluating them for an actual job. A mock interview may be offered through career services for students or recent alumni, by a career coach or through a local workforce services office for candidates in the process of transitioning to a new opportunity.

Mock Interview Benefits

1. Mock interviews help candidates reduce their stress and anxiety about interviewing. If you’re not sure how to answer typical interview questions, mock interviews provide a great opportunity for you to “test drive” your answers. The person conducting the mock interview is most likely a skilled interviewer and can give you feedback on whether or not your response is suitable.

2. Mock interviews help you boost your confidence. Job coaches who conduct mock interviews are usually ready to point out your strengths in the interview process. By having confidence in your skills, you will perform better in an actual interview.

See the full article here.

**To schedule a mock interview through the CSO, contact Beth Hansen.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Five Strategies for a Fabulous First Impression

First impressions matter so make the most of them!
First impressions do matter. Whether they are for dating, job interviewing, or other purposes, decades of research on primary and recency effects suggest that we especially tend to remember first and last interactions and impressions. So, whether you are looking for a job, a date, or a favor from a stranger, it is important to make first impressions count and count big! In many ways, this is why speed dating (or speed interviewing) makes a whole ot of sense. We form judgments about people quickly and with very little information. So, why suffer through a long and dragged out interview process or date when you know within a few minutes if you have interest in the other party or not?

So here is my list of five top strategies for a fabulous first impression.

Monday, November 5, 2012

Sending a Post-Interview Thank You? Don't Make These 5 Mistakes


Sending a thank-you note after a job interview is a good way to signal your interest in the role and solidify the interviewer's positive impressions. But thank-yous need to be handled well, or they lose their effectiveness.

Make sure you're not making these five mistakes when you send a post-interview note of thanks.

1. Treating it as a perfunctory exercise. Too many job candidates view thank-you notes as just one more box to check off in their job-searching steps. They send generic, perfunctory notes that signal "I'm just sending this because I heard I was supposed to." These aren't especially useful or impressive to an employer; they really just convey that you read somewhere that you should send a note, and you're dutifully doing it. Instead, your note should be truly personalized and should build on the conversation that you had in the interview. If it just conveys thanks for an interviewer's time and reiterates that you're interested in the job, it won't add much to your candidacy.

2. Thinking of the note as merely a thank you. The job search advice industry has done job seekers a disservice by using the term "thank-you notes" to describe what they should send after an interview. The reality is, most interviewers don't really care if you thank them for the interview; they're not interviewing you to be charitable but rather because they might want to enter into a business arrangement with you—one that they'll benefit from. So, despite the term "thank-you note," your correspondence shouldn't be as much about giving thanks as about following up on the interview in a way that demonstrates your enthusiasm for the job. It should build on the conversation from the interview and explain why you'd be a good fit for the job.

See the full article here.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

6 Reasons Employers Won't Share Why They Didn't Hire You

You applied for the job, maybe even got an interview, but now you're staring at the rejection notice that just showed up in your email. You'd love to know why you didn't get the job, but the employer's note doesn't tell you anything about their reasons. And if you're like many job seekers, you might wonder why employers aren't more forthcoming about the reasons you didn't make the cut.

While some hiring managers will occasionally help candidates out by giving them feedback about where their candidacy could have been stronger, the majority of employers don't tell candidates why they were rejected. Many employers even have policies prohibiting giving feedback.

Here are the six most common reasons why.