Category Archives: guest blogger

GUEST BLOGGER: Ken Herron Shows and Tells – Create an Online Portfolio to Help You Get Your Next Job

You have a resume.  Your competitor has a resume.  So how can you show your unique background, skills and experience to maximize your online presence and shorten your job search?   Create an online portfolio.  Beef up your existing LinkedIn profile, and create additional online resumes with VisualCV (I practice what I preach, see: http://visualcv.com/kenherron).  You can only have one profile on LinkedIn, but you can have multiple VisualCVs.  

 Here are five things you should include in your online portfolio to stand out in front of recruiters, HR professionals and hiring managers.    

#1 Your Book on Amazon  For those of us who have not (yet!) written our first book, we have likely written an article, demonstrating both our expertise and our writing skills.  If not, and if you do not yet have your own Web site or blog, self-publish your document on Slideshare.  

#2 Your Recommendations  Third parties can always tout our talents more aggressively, and more credibly, than we can ourselves.  LinkedIn has an excellent recommendation tool, and you should pursue specific recommendations from recent executives, supervisors, peers, subordinates, customers and industry leaders. You can also cite relevant recommendations in your thank you notes to interviewers to reinforce why you are the best candidate for a position.  

#3 Your Work Samples  Show off the best public domain (i.e., non-proprietary) samples of your work. For team-based work, be sure to articulate your specific contributions.  This isn’t just for marketing folks who have produced sales collateral.  Top technical executive recruiter Marsh Sutherland says software engineers should showcase samples of their best coding for download and review.  Don’t forget to include any work which has won awards!  

#4 Your Press Clippings  If you have been interviewed by, or quoted in the media as an expert in your field, be sure to include it.  If not, sign up today on Help a Reporter Out to identify opportunities to share your knowledge with a reporter on deadline who is seeking someone with your exact expertise.  

#5 You, Speaking Publicly  The golden ticket is an online video of you presenting to a roaring crowd (regardless of size).  If you do not already have this, present yourself as a confident, competent public speaker in your field by seeking out an appropriate local organization, and ask to speak at one of their upcoming meetings.  Have a friend video you – be sure to practice first, you don’t want an unexpected technical glitch to keep your brilliance from the world!  If you don’t yet have the skills to effectively speak in front of a live audience, sign up today for your local Toastmasters. Finally, if just the thought of public speaking terrifies you, upload a PowerPoint presentation to Slideshare to show your ability to clearly communicate your ideas. Use the audio feature to add your own voice to your presentation.  

Be remarkable.  Be different.  And think outside your resume!    

An award-winning global marketer, Ken Herron lives in Boston as he networks, online and offline, to find his next job.

GUEST BLOGGER: Miss PR Princess Takes on This New “Don’t Call Me Liz” Debacle in D.C.

From MPS: This story about Rep. Jim McDermott’s (D-Wash.) scheduler/office manager, Elizabeth “Don’t Call Me Liz!” Becton, has been burning up the Web today, and I just can’t believe someone could be so self-involved and stupid! Doesn’t she know email gets forwarded???  Well, I can believe it, but…  My dear friend and today’s Guest Blogger, Miss PR Princess, has provided some wise commentary that you should definitely soak in:

Your Reputation’s all You’ve Got
If you’re lucky enough to be employed, don’t sweat the small stuff; your future employment could depend on it. It’s inevitable; we spend a lot of time at work, and people are going to get on our nerves. Whether it’s the coworker who always tries to steal your thunder or the person in the cubicle next to you who cuts their nails at work; it’s always something. But it’s best to take the advice of relationship counselors and “pick your battles.”

For example, Rep. Jim McDermott (D-Wash.), scheduler/office manager, Elizabeth Becton insists (and we do mean insists) on being addressed by her full name — not Liz or any other variant – to the point where she verbally attacked an executive assistant at McBee Strategic (story below). The outrageous e-mail exchange was leaked online, and now this woman could possibly be fired, and worse, her reputation destroyed! She could have just been having a bad day, and now she looks like a total schmuck who no one would ever want to work with. In today’s world, you never know what could get leaked online. And once it’s online; it will show up when your name is Google searched. It’s best to show restraint and keep your cool. If you need to have a difficult conversation, suck it up and have it face-to-face. Don’t put it in writing. Even, and especially if, it’s just “one of those days.” Your future reputation and employment opportunities could depend on it.

Thanks, Miss PR Princess. Love your advice! That chick needs to be run out of D.C. on her you know what.

Related post: https://misspinkslip.wordpress.com/2009/05/18/dont-give-a-damn-bout-your-online-reputation-your-next-employer-sure-does/

Dear MPS: Should I Bite The Hand That Fed Me a Pink Slip?

A reader needs YOUR help! Please weigh in on her dilemma.

Dear Miss Pink Slip,

Now they want me back???

It’s been about three months since I was laid off. From hearing the words “we’re cutting back, and we won’t be able to afford your salary” to the roller coaster of emotions that followed, it’s been one of the most difficult experiences of my life. First, I wondered, “why me? Do they value me less than my colleagues?” Then, I began scanning the job sites religiously, looking for something…anything was better than scrapping by on a measly unemployment check that doesn’t even cover the mortgage. After three months of relentless job searching and networking, I’ve scored a couple interviews, but still no full-time gig. I’ve felt sad, depressed, anxious, nervous, helpless and finally, after a few months of going through all the emotions, I’ve come to a place where I’m actually…should I really say it…happy!

I’ve learned to enjoy the small things again, like cooking, organizing my closet, watching “Oprah”, working out, spending time with my family, actually getting a good night sleep — all the things I was constantly trying to fit into my schedule to no avail when I had a full-time job. I’ve also had time to do some soul searching and realized I was really unhappy. My former boss was, well…in three words, “Devil Wears Prada”. I worked crazy hours and I felt unappreciated. I was burned out, to say the least.

I’ve finally come to a place where I’m thankful I was laid off. I’ve been doing freelance work and even considering starting my own business. Then, today, I get a phone call from my former boss: 

“How are you? We miss you around here! It’s not the same without you.” Blah, blah, blah. This is what your previous employer is supposed to say, right? And of course it feels good to be missed since you wonder if they even thought twice about laying you off. Then she dropped the bomb: “We’d love for you to come back and help us. Can you work on a part-time basis?”

Now I’m stuck between continuing to collect my unemployment check while searching for a job I actually like, doing some freelance work and seeing if I can develop that into a business, or returning to a job I hate because, to put it bluntly, I need the $$. I mean, it’s part-time, so I could continue to do some freelance work, right? But, after three months, I’m actually happy. Do I put up with the emotional turmoil and drama that comes along with the job for the paycheck? Then, of course, there’s the question: does part-time really mean part-time or will it turn into full-time with part-time pay? If that happened, I’d have to put my foot down and possibly quit, which would mean I’m not eligible for unemployment benefits. It’s like the boyfriend you know you shouldn’t go back to, but the sex is so good.

I’m torn. Any advice would be much appreciated.

Guest Blogger: Simone Grant – Just the Kick I Needed

I was laid off a few weeks ago from a job I really didn’t want or like.  I know that in this economic climate we’re all supposed to be happy for whatever work we have.  And I was.  So happy for it that I let that happiness blind me to the truth.  Which was, that I was wasting my time there.

You see, I left my “real” job 18 months ago so that I could take on less challenging work and achieve a better work/life balance.  The hope was that I’d ultimately find a way to transition into becoming a writer.  That was the plan.  And it was a good plan.  Until I realized I’d still need to pay the bills.

So I found myself a silly little day job to pay the bills and coasted along happily, not challenging myself much. Not rocking the boat any more than I already had.  Just happy the bills were being paid and that I had a little spare time each week to write.

Clearly the universe had other plans. 

I was a wreck for about 48 hrs after I got the news.  I pretended I was fine with it, but I wasn’t.  But then I quickly got moving and started writing like a demon, sending out pitches and applying to every blogger type job I could find.. 

And now I’m freelancing.  Writing and being paid to write.  And I have a couple of really interesting creative projects that I’m working on.  Am I making as much money as I was before?  No, not even close.  But maybe I will be in a few months.   Besides, I have things that are far more valuable now.  Freedom and time and the ability to work in my pajamas and pursue my passions.  None of which would have been possible if I hadn’t gotten laid off..  Seems like a fair trade to me.

by Simone Grant
Sex, Lies and Dating in the City
http://www.sex-lies-dating.com/
http://twitter.com/SimoneGrant