Pitch like a pro

Posted by Amanda Augustine

March 13, 2013 @ 02:00 AM

Take a cue from the pitching professionals to launch your elevator pitch to the next level.

Elevator Pitch Like a Pro

We are in the middle of Major League Baseball’s spring training. In Florida, new players are trying out for roster and position spots, while existing players are getting in some practice time before the true competition begins.

While I admittedly don’t know a lot about baseball, I am blessed with a family full of men who take this American tradition rather seriously and keep me in the loop. When I think about spring training and baseball season, I immediately recognize its similarities with the job search. There’s a lot of competition, and many talented professionals vying for the same role. It takes a lot of determination, planning and hard work to be a success.

Topics: Ask Amanda, Networking, Personal Branding

A second chance: Your [Chinese] New Year’s resolution

Posted by Amanda Augustine

February 10, 2013 @ 02:00 AM

Recommit to your New Year’s resolution to change your career this year.

Yesterday marked the year 4711 on the Chinese calendar, the year of the snake. Over one-sixth of the world’s population celebrated the Chinese New Year by gathering with friends and family to exchange gifts, play games and set off fireworks to banish the evil spirits. In the days leading up to the big event, many cleaned their homes from top to bottom in hopes of sweeping out bad luck and clearing the way for good fortune.

If you feel like your career New Year’s resolution has been plagued with bad luck, consider the Chinese New Year your chance to drive away negative vibes and start fresh. Haven’t stuck to your resolution? Now’s your opportunity to recommit to your goals. Use these three tips to embrace the year of the snake and land that new job sooner.

Chinese New Year

Topics: Ask Amanda, Networking, Job Search, Job Goals

5 ways you’re sabotaging your job search

Posted by Amanda Augustine

January 30, 2013 @ 02:00 AM

If you’re not getting results, reevaluate your job-search strategy and make changes.

Skippy_Clock_TimeEvery February 2nd, the town of Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania celebrates the holiday with early-morning festivities to watch their beloved groundhog, Punxsutawney Phil, emerge from his burrow. Legend has it that if Phil sees his shadow, he has predicted six more weeks of winter. However, the phrase “Groundhog Day” has come to mean much more. For many, it’s a time of self-reflection.

For instance, take the movie Groundhog Day. Bill Murray plays an arrogant TV reporter who is forced to cover the annual Groundhog Day event in Punxsutawny, only to find himself trapped in a time loop, repeating the same day over and over again. It’s not until Murray’s character starts evaluating his life and reexamining his priorities that he can finally move forward to a new day.

How many of you have felt like Bill Murray’s character? You wake up, search for jobs and apply, reach out to recruiters and hear nothing. Then you wake up and do the same thing all over again with the same results. I hear this from job seekers all the time. “I’m doing everything I’m supposed to and getting nowhere – what should I do?” 

Below are five questions to ask yourself the next time your job search stalls.

Topics: Ask Amanda, Networking, Job Search, Personal Branding, Job Application & Follow Up, Resume & Cover Letters

Work your next networking event

Posted by Amanda Augustine

January 09, 2013 @ 02:00 AM

Build a strategy to maximize the benefits of every networking opportunity.

Name-2Throughout my time at TheLadders, I’ve written many articles and given presentations explaining the importance of networking to boost your career and job-search efforts.  Whether you love it or hate it, networking has become an integral part of the job-search process.

What I’ve realized is that, while many people are jumping on the networking bandwagon, few actually approach networking – or more specifically, networking events – with a strategy that is sure to move the needle towards their goals.  Merely showing up to an event won’t guarantee results, and how you prepare for and follow up after an event is just as important as what you do when you’re there.

Below are five tips to help you make the most of each networking event you attend.

Topics: Ask Amanda, Networking, Job Search

Get back to social media basics

Posted by Amanda Augustine

December 26, 2012 @ 02:00 AM

Incorporate social media into your job-search strategy to find the right job, faster. Week 5 of New Year, New You.

Social_Media_OnlineI want to thank all of you who’ve tuned in each week as we’ve counted down to a New Year, New You. Hopefully these assignments have helped you refresh your job-search strategy with the digital recruiter in mind. 

In the past four weeks we’ve worked to update your image, craft a professional resume, manage your search on the go, and overhaul your online brand. This fifth and final assignment is designed to help you take your job search to the next level. This week, we’re getting back to social media basics.

Topics: Ask Amanda, Networking, Job Search, Personal Branding

4 ways to protect your personal brand from holiday mishaps

Posted by Amanda Augustine

December 18, 2012 @ 02:00 AM

Plan ahead to save face during corporate events.

Holiday Parties

There are tons of articles out there warning you to be on your best behavior during holiday events, but still, many find themselves the butt of their colleagues’ jokes the next day. I don’t know what it is about holiday parties, but many think it gives them a license to abandon all the rules and let loose, regardless of the consequences.

I’ve seen my share of poor holiday performances over the years and have learned a lesson or two along the way. The bottom line: there’s never a good reason to behave badly at a corporate event – during the holidays or otherwise. Not only are you damaging your personal brand, but you could be sabotaging your potential advancement at the organization.

Even if you are counting down the days till bonuses are delivered so you can quit, don’t burn any bridges that could lead to recommendations, references, or even job leads later in your career. No one wants to stick their neck out for the guy who ends up in a sit-down with HR the morning after a holiday party. Here are four tips to help you avoid mishaps at the company party:

Topics: Ask Amanda, Networking, Personal Branding, Professional Development

How to pitch your value: Dissecting the elevator pitch

Posted by Amanda Augustine

November 14, 2012 @ 02:00 AM

Develop a strong elevator pitch that highlights your key skill sets, passions, and job goals. [TWEET]


Q: How do you implement the correct pitch with the right words that describe me and my skills?  - Gregory R. 

A: When you think about it, an elevator pitch is just one of the many methods you’ll use to communicate your personal brand to a potential employer.

As a job seeker, you instantly become a sales and marketing professional. You are now in the business of marketing your skills and expertise to people connected to your target job. Your messaging needs to be consistent across all of your branding channels, your resumecover letter, and online profiles; what you say when networking; and how you respond to questions in an interview

By taking the time to go through this exercise and craft your pitch, you will be better prepared to communicate your value through every phase of the job search.

Topics: Ask Amanda, Interviewing, Networking, Personal Branding

Returning to work? How to handle the employment gap

Posted by Amanda Augustine

November 07, 2012 @ 02:00 AM

Utilize your volunteer experience to boost your resume and expand your network during the job search.

Q: I haven't worked outside the home except to volunteer for many years and can't even get an interview.  I know I can do the job but how do you get that across?  – Doreen M.

A: It can be so frustrating when you know you have value to add to a company but can’t get your foot in the door. Your story is very common with full-time parents who left the corporate world to raise their families and now want (or need) to reenter the workforce, and with those who were laid off and were forced to take on a string of lower-paying jobs to pay the bills. In these situations, I recommend doing two things:

Topics: Ask Amanda, Networking, Job Search, Resume & Cover Letters

Job search lessons learned from the politicians [Infographic]

Posted by Amanda Augustine

October 23, 2012 @ 09:00 AM

We’re a mere two weeks away from the Presidential election. You can’t turn on the TV without seeing a commercial or news report related to a national or local candidate.

Regardless of your political beliefs, running for office is very similar to running a job search, and there’s a lot we can learn from our politicians regarding how to act while campaigning. In today’s economy, skill and experience alone don’t guarantee a job – you need to be likeable. As a job candidate, you need to evaluate your own image and communication skills. Tailor your approach with prospective employers to win their votes, and ultimately, the job offer.

Here are 5 simple tips to help you run your job search like you’re running for office:

Topics: Ask Amanda, Interviewing, Networking, Job Search

In the job search & over 50: Part II of III

Posted by Amanda Augustine

October 04, 2012 @ 08:30 AM

The second article in a three-part series on conducting a job search later in life.

20130619_AskAmanda_Job_Application_Checklist_v2After you’ve determined the right job goals for your search and developed a resume to support them, it’s time to begin your job-search campaign. Below are tips on how to advertise your brand on and offline, as well as pursue opportunities through multiple channels.


In Jobvite's 2012 Social Recruiting Survey of 800+ HR professionals and recruiters in the US, it was found that 92 percent of employers and recruiters use social media sites such as Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn for recruiting. The survey reported that 73 percent of companies found a new hire through social media (the largest percentage – 89 percent – came through LinkedIn). This means the job seeker never even submitted an application – the employer or recruiter found them because of their online presence. In addition, 86 percent of recruiters admitted to reviewing candidates’ social network profiles – whether or not the candidates gave them that information.

Bottom line? If you’re not utilizing these channels to brand yourself and pursue opportunities, you’re missing out on a number of job leads that may not be published anywhere else. Building a strong online brand that supports your job goals, aligns with your resume and highlights your accomplishments and areas of expertise is imperative in today’s job market.

Topics: Ask Amanda, Networking, Personal Branding, Working with Recruiters, Job Application & Follow Up