Gracefully decline a job offer

Posted by TheLadders Contributor

April 24, 2014 @ 08:00 AM

Keep it professional and there's nothing to be squeamish about when you turn down one job offer for another. Use this advice to explain your regrets.

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It sounds too good to be true. One highly touted job seeker was hit with a perfect financial services storm: job offers from Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan Chase and Blackrock — all at the same time.

This was the situation facing one client of career coach Connie Thanasoulis-Cerrachio, a partner at SixFigureStart and former head of staffing for Merrill Lynch Asset Management.

Is it an embarrassment of riches to be presented with such wonderful opportunities in the wake of a global financial crisis? Sure, but this job seeker also had a difficult task on her hands. She had to turn down two of these three giants and do so in a way that protected her relationships and reputation at each.

In an era where very few can afford to burn any bridges, she handled the matter gracefully and honestly.

Topics: Salary & Negotiation, Working with Recruiters

7 important questions every job seeker should ask themselves

Posted by Amanda Augustine

April 22, 2014 @ 07:02 PM

Lay the groundwork for a successful job search by asking yourself these questions.

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Whether you’re just beginning the job hunt or you’ve been searching for months, it’s important to regularly monitor your activities and reevaluate your strategy. Keep your job search on track by asking yourself the following questions throughout the job-search process. 

Am I qualified for this position?

Read the job description carefully before you submit an application. Do you meet the core requirements of the role? Only apply to jobs where you possess these must-haves. If your dream job requires a skill you don’t have, brainstorm ways to develop this skill in or out of the office. 

Topics: Ask Amanda, Job Search

Can you afford to relocate?

Posted by TheLadders Contributor

April 22, 2014 @ 01:00 PM

Cost of living is key to consider when you are contemplating making a move.

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Once you get an offer in another city, you’ll probably do everything you can to see if the new job is in your kind of town. If it is, don’t say ‘yes’ right away — make sure the salary is enough to pay for your lifestyle in that particular place.

Your desired location might have all the amenities you can ever want close by, but that won’t mean anything if you couldn’t afford them. The trick is to get as much local pricing information as possible — everything from gas prices and rent to what it would cost to buy a cup of coffee and a movie ticket, said recent Chicago transplant Jacob Young, an SEO specialist and online reputation manager for Young Social Media. “Being that specific is really good because you can say, ‘Oh, when I go to the grocery store, I’ll know how much it’ll cost,’ ” he said.

Commodities don’t cost the same in Wichita as they do in San Francisco, and the things you regularly buy can add up quickly if you don’t account for them before you decide to relocate. “I have three things: grocery store, gas station and bistro — those are the three places I’m going to go to,” Young said.

Topics: Job Search, Relocation

Is relocation right for you?

Posted by TheLadders Contributor

April 21, 2014 @ 09:59 AM

Use local resources to help you decide whether a long-distance move will fit your lifestyle.

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So you’ve had it with the big city and you’re ready for the country life. Or maybe working in Middle America has run its course and you want to try living on one of the coasts for a while. People decide to relocate for a variety of reasons, and work is usually right at the top of that list. But before you pack your bags and forward your mail, there are some things to consider.

Many people get an idea in their head about a place that doesn’t reflect what life in that place is really like, says Jacob Young, an SEO specialist and online reputation manager for Young Social Media. Just because you once had a great vacation in southern California and fell in love with the San Diego Zoo doesn’t mean that everyone else at the zoo wasn’t miserable from battling the traffic.

Topics: Job Search, Relocation

Seeking VP, Anything

Posted by Marc Cenedella

April 21, 2014 @ 08:00 AM

In the job search, you must be precise and concrete about your value and career goals, and shape an elevator pitch that reflects them. 

"Oh, I'm looking for anything," you might tell well-meaning friends who ask.

It's a problem.

Because in today's economy, no employer is looking for a "VP, Anything", or a “Director of Whatever Needs to Be Done."  They're looking for an experienced professional who can solve specific problems.

When you're thinking about moving jobs, you need to have a brief, pithy assertion of who you are and what you're qualified to do.  It's important that you be able to explain to an old colleague, or a new connection, in 30 seconds or less, what it is that you're looking for.

Topics: Job Search, Personal Branding, Marc's Newsletter

10 questions to ask a recruiter (and 1 to avoid)

Posted by Guest Contributor

April 17, 2014 @ 07:00 AM

Are you so flattered when a recruiter rings you that you forget to ask them critical questions? Take this quiz to see if you’re covering your bases.

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Every once in a while, the phone rings, and it’s a recruiter on the other end. While you might not be interested in what he is offering, you have to admit that it’s flattering to get the call. (“Someone thinks I might be right for a job!”)

Once you get past the initial compliment, though, you have to get down to the serious business of determining if you are interested. The recruiter wants to know about you, but before you turn over your resume, there are things you should know about him.

Here are 10 questions to ask a recruiter and one question to avoid. See if you can figure out which is which. (Answer at bottom.)

Topics: Interviewing, Working with Recruiters

Resume renovations for your spring job search

Posted by Amanda Augustine

April 15, 2014 @ 04:32 PM

Use these tips to dust off your job application materials and spruce them up for spring.

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Here in New York it’s finally starting to feel like spring! Many of us use this season as an excuse to unclutter our closets and reorganize our work spaces. It’s also a great time to reevaluate our job-search tactics and give them a thorough cleaning.

If your current resume isn’t delivering results, it might be time to spruce it up or even start fresh. Below are articles with top tips to help you renovate your resume this season.

Topics: Ask Amanda, Resume & Cover Letters

Tips from a recruiter: How to stand out at your next career fair

Posted by Mike Deissig

April 15, 2014 @ 10:00 AM

Make a splash at your next career fair with advice from TheLadders’ recruiter.

TheLadders_Job_FairIt’s easy to feel like a small fish in a big pond when you’re at a career fair. With hundreds of candidates all vying for the attention of the same recruiters and employers, you feel like you don’t stand out. 

And I’m going to let you in on a secret: You probably don’t. As a recruiter, I can easily talk to more than one hundred different job seekers at a career event. At the end of the day, the names, faces, and occupations all blur together. The most important thing you can do at a career fair is take steps to distinguish yourself from the crowd.

After years of recruiting quality hires from these events, I’m giving you the top ways to distinguish yourself from the other candidates. They’re surprisingly simple.

Topics: Networking, New to the Workforce, Working with Recruiters

13 ways your resume can say 'I’m unprofessional'

Posted by TheLadders Contributor

April 15, 2014 @ 07:00 AM

Hiring pros share the faux pas they find in real resumes, including wacky e-mail addresses, defunct phone numbers and cookie-cutter templates.

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No offense, thebigcheese@domain.com, but if nobody has told you yet, we’re telling you now: That e-mail address is not making you look particularly professional.

Unprofessional e-mail addresses are just one way of sending hiring managers the wrong message. If you want to be taken seriously when you apply for jobs, you need to put some polish on your resume, your cover letter and everything contained therein. Hiring professionals repeatedly run across these red flags that scream “unprofessional.” A number of recruiters and HR managers shared with TheLadders common errors from their own professional experiences.

Topics: Resume & Cover Letters

Leonardo da Vinci's resume

Posted by Marc Cenedella

April 14, 2014 @ 08:00 AM

Before he was famous, before he painted the Mona Lisa and the Last Supper, before he invented the helicopter, before he drew the most famous image of man, before he was all of these things, Leonardo da Vinci was an armorer, a weapons guy, a maker of things that go "boom".

And, like you, he had to put together a resume to get his next gig. So in 1482, at the age of 30, he wrote out a letter and a list of his capabilities and sent it off to Ludovico il Moro, Duke of Milan.

So to celebrate Leonardo's birthday tomorrow on April 15th, I'd like to share his wonderful resume with you. You can click on the link below to see the full-size version.

Topics: Marc's Newsletter