Posts Tagged ‘Executive Career Management’

What are you paying for?

Monday, August 13th, 2012

It is unfortunate that there are many organizations with a much greater interest in taking a customer’s money than they are in providing the services they are offering. Recently a client shared their horrific tale of hiring an executive career change organization with the expectation of a resume and a job. The fee was $12,000 and like many others, the $10,000 or $12,000 fee did not net them a job from this U.S. based company. A Toronto based company charging a $5,000 fee and changing their name on a regular basis has also left many feeling ripped off and without the job they were promised!

If a company is promising you a job for a fee, do not engage their services! Reputable, qualified and certified individuals provide individual services for a fee that could lead to a job but the decision to pay for these professional services should only be made after a thorough investigation outside of their website or organization. Start with Rip Off Report.  Review certifications, experience and references. Network to obtain recommendations from satisfied friends or colleagues.

A reputable supplier will have references, significant experience and certifications. If you don’t understand what you are buying don’t pay for it! Social Media services are abundant but it is blatantly apparent that most of the services do not include any consulting or education but simply a signed contract for a year of auto tweets. If you have 2 Followers on Twitter, this is a total waste of money and the person selling it should be ashamed to do so! It should also be understood that a personal investment in your business or online profiles is key to establishing credibility.

Another company providing the website and hosting for a client set up a site with a contact me link that did not link to the contact information page. An online search found the individual associated with the company listed as an Online Expert. I note this simply to point out the fact that the website did not contain any links to any online information; not Linkedin, Facebook or Twitter!

If you are dealing with a supplier who has little time or interest in educating you with detailed information about the product or service they are providing consider this a red flag and avoid taking the risk of being ripped off.

Do you know what you are paying for?

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Are you comfortable in your current position?

Monday, June 25th, 2012

Don’t be!!!

Paul Copcutt’s “Just My Toonies Worth”, What’s your next job in the tech sector?, gives the facts on why you should not get comfortable in any position stating, “In some areas of products and services the technology sector is booming, in others it is going…..going….gone – FAST.”

Paul elaborates on 3 important tips to consider in your career regardless of the industry:

1. Never settle for what you have.

2. Remain flexible and open to new ways of doing things.

3. Cut bait and run.

If you’re still feeling comfortable in your current position you may already be aware of the following forecasts:

90 Million Workers Won’t Be Needed By 2020, Study Says, Bonnie Kavoussi, The Huffington Post

Employment Projections: 2010-2020 Summary US, Bureau of Labor Statistics

Employment projections: Where the jobs will (and won’t) be over the next decade Workopolis, Statscan

Canada’s Best Jobs 2012 Canadian Business

Whether you are employed in a growing or a declining industry, maintaining an up-to-date, professional resume will ensure you are always prepared for whatever tomorrow brings!

 

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Privacy

Wednesday, May 23rd, 2012

It is the notion of privacy that has many missing out on the tremendous opportunities that are possible through the use of social media. Privacy has been sold as a protection but when managing a career consideration must be given to who it is protecting.  It is understandable that those with something to hide or involved in criminal activity would have an interest in maintaining a low profile but surprisingly we find the majority of those who do not support cameras in public areas are not the thieves or abusers who would likely get caught, they are those who, for whatever reason embrace the concept of the fight for “privacy”! The invasion of privacy that so many have bought into has definitely protected those who have something to hide but this too is changing! Of course we have a responsibility to protect our children from sharing information with strangers online but this advise was given long before the Internet age. So too is it necessary to recognize that personal financial information should be protected, whether at home in a locked safe or by ignoring any email which is requesting financial information.

Social Media should not be regarded as an invasion of privacy but rather a venue which is enabling an age of communities not unlike the close knit villages of days gone by when children played together, mothers worked along with other mothers to care for children and fathers worked together trading goods, farming and sharing the tasks of erecting buildings or digging wells. The industrial revolution led us into an era of oneself rather than ourselves and with that, privacy was an easy sell. Social Media is swinging the pendulum the opposite direction and close knit communities are emerging online around the globe. Like minded individuals are sharing ideas, promoting causes and networking with colleagues to advance in their careers. Communication is no longer inhibited by logistics and the wealth of information is infinite. Word of mouth, the most trusted of recommendations is easily obtainable with a simple search and this online visibility is transitioning businesses to give back to their customers by incorporating social responsibility.

Today, the transparency that has resulted from establishing a genuine and authentic personal brand utilizing social media has not resulted in damage due to a lack of privacy but in unlimited opportunities! Unless of course the information you have provided on your resume is not factual. A successful job search strategy involves a profile which is visible, concise, reputable and one which does not generate any red flags, not unlike a resume which should never leave any significant gaps in employment. You may think it is negative to note a year as a “homemaker” or in a part time position but this is much more preferable than leaving a decision maker wondering if you were incarcerated for that year! A recruiter or potential employer is focused on an individual with the qualifications they are seeking and will find those potential candidates among the many who have made the effort to stand out in a crowd. A successful executive career requires a highly visible and impressive online profile. This professional profile should not include personal details related to financial, religious or political information; that is private.

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Career Professionals Won’t Guarantee A Job

Friday, March 2nd, 2012

Electronic Intifada's Inspector Clouseau MomentMany of those managing executive careers are aware of the importance of a professional resume, networking, job search strategies, a strong social media presence, personal branding, career coaching and and the role that certified career professionals play within the career industry. Unfortunately, not unlike any other industry, there are those who are good at what they do and those who are not. There are those who are involved in continued education, have extensive experience and are fully certified, and there are those who are not.

HR professionals and recruiters are googling potential candidates to verify credentials, work  history, gain an insight into their personality and review testimonials and recommendations. Organizations and companies must investigate extensively to ensure the substantial investment to hire nets the best possible candidate. This due diligence is necessary for anyone when considering an investment to secure the services of a professional whether long term or short term.

There will always be some willing to cash in on the vulnerability of those in career transition as we have seen recently in an investigation by CBC Marketplace, Job seekers warned about Toronto firm’s pitch. As stated in this article and previously posted on this site in, Recruiters Don’t Ask Job Seekers To Pay, no reputable organizations; recruiters, “job search marketing firms” or career management professionals will ever guarantee a job.

Professional Advice For Your Job Search and Google It and Avoid a Scam also reiterate the need for due diligence in the decisions made when managing an executive career. Your future starts with you and there are many reputable executive career management professionals qualified to assist in helping to meet or even exceed your career goals. Look for testimonials and referrals from trusted colleagues and join the pertinent groups on Linkedin to share in the many discussions available. Learn from the expertise shared by others and discover the advantages of highlighting your own expertise and expanding your professional network.

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Career Networks vs Social Networks

Tuesday, February 28th, 2012

01 (342)Casual - Live with styleSocial media has certainly changed, “how we do business” in a big way. Networking, establishing a personal brand, job search strategies, targeting companies and organizations; all have become much easier tasks and on a significantly larger scale. If there is one concern that seems to be the most highly voiced, it is related to the issue of privacy. Suffice to say that the majority of those managing an executive career would relish the idea of separating their professional social media profiles from their personal profiles. The question is:

Should separating your personal and professional online profiles be a concern or a consideration?

Social media has enabled anyone with an interest, the ability to put themselves into the spotlight but unlike other media’s of the past, the control over the flow of information generated today utilizing social media is directly from the user. The options to establish your place in this spotlight, your online presence, are many. It is an easy task to research the professional sites versus the social or personal sites. Clearly, Linkedin is the number one professional networking site with over 150 million users. Other professional social media sites include Naymz, Zoominfo, VisualCV, ExecuNet and the list goes on. Sites such as Monster have rolled out Beknown on the FB platform to secure a significant online presence with networking opportunities and HAPPEN will soon be revamping their website to embrace the advantages of a social media site.

Today, there is no question that Facebook dominates as the number 1 social media site with 845 million users, forecasting 1 billion users by August 2012! This number of users, which is 695 million more than Linkedin must inspire the following question: Is it reasonable for anyone managing a career and working towards establishing a visible online profile to ignore the opportunity to establish a presence on Facebook? Professional Pages and Business Pages on Facebook have influenced millions and are easily established without any cost. Although a personal profile is necessary to establish a professional page, it is not necessary to have any direct link between them.

All social media sites offer privacy settings but when managing an executive career, especially for those in career transition, the risk is in blocking access to decision makers, potential employers and recruiters. Those who have the potential to positively impact your career should also not be left with the impression that you have something to hide. Embrace all that social media has to offer and concentrate on a consistent, authentic and genuine online presence regardless of whether it is a Linkedin profile or a Facebook profile;  a career network or a social network! Your online presence should be who you are and a decision to hide a personal profile or to establish a professional profile which varies greatly from a personal one will only serve to damage any credibility. Establish a true personal brand and stand proudly behind it. Obviously those who are dishonest or have been involved in criminal activity will have a more difficult time with the idea of being open and forthright but for many, you can be assured that decision makers are aware that professionals also have personal lives.

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Are you a Follower or a Leader?

Monday, January 30th, 2012

20120106-NodeXL-Twitter-edreform network graphOver 800 million people have established profiles on Facebook and are actively engaged in networking. In Canada, that includes more than 50% of the population! In the past 3 months the largest growth in Facebook users was aged 45-54 followed by 55-64, 35-44, 25-34 and 65-0! In the past 6 months, Canadian Facebook users increased by 590, 960! Visit  socialbakers.com for further statistics.

Do you have a Facebook account? Are you a follower or a leader? If you have access to the Internet, it is simply a matter of time before you will decide to follow the other 800 million people and join Facebook. There is no doubt that for many it is the natural resistance to change that could be holding them back so if the numbers are convincing enough, it should be noted that Facebook was launched almost 8 years ago!

Another influential social media site is Twitter which was established in 2006 and currently has over 462 million users. An easy to use, real time resource, Twitter has become a favourite source for all who recognize it’s potential.

The absolute minimum online presence for anyone managing a career or business is Linkedin. Currently with over 136 million users, Linkedin provides a professional site with the resources to display authentic references and a career history linked to company’s and organizations. Networking with other professionals, following companies, job listings and the potential to connect with key decision makers around the world makes this the ultimate in job search tools.

Social media is not a passing fad and the consistent growth of Facebook, Twitter and Linkedin to name only a few, will ensure these social media sites continue to be key resources in the successful management of any career or business. No longer is there a choice to be the leader in joining these sites but by following those who did take the lead you are sure to discover the many benefits of online networking!

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An Executive Career in 2012

Friday, January 27th, 2012

UCLA School of Engineering Job FairManaging an executive career successfully requires a conscious awareness of personal branding, career industry trends, economic conditions, an online presence and what it all means in 2012. Choosing to embrace or at a minimum accept change will certainly assist in moving your executive career forward in a positive direction. As inevitable as it is to bring in the New Year, so too is it to recognize the changes that must be incorporated to manage a successful executive career in 2012. A fresh approach, knowledge of current economic conditions, industry trends, a significant online presence and active  networking will increase available opportunities as well as reduce the risk of a lengthy job search.

Where are you in your career today? Where would you like to be in 2 years, 5 years and 10 years? Clearly defined goals will increase your chances for success as long as they are built on a solid foundation! Corporate downsizing, economic fluctuations and the rapid pace of technological advances have become the norm and this year we will continue to see lost jobs, shorter tenures and the need to focus on transferable skills. A successful career transition will depend on YOU! In addition to setting attainable goals, a highly visible and impressive personal brand is the key to establishing a secure foundation in your career. Consistency in a name, profile content, skills and achievements within social media profiles and a professional resume will establish credibility and increase the opportunities to be found by HR professionals and recruiters.

Face to face networking is still key to managing a successful career but online networking is just as critical. This year 95% of HR professionals and recruiters will be searching Linkedin for potential candidates. Accepting this single source without seeking out more online information would be as unlikely as hiring someone based on their resume and eliminating the need for a job interview. Have you invested the time to establish other social media profiles to expand your professional network and increase your online visibility? Is the information consistent and concise? Is your resume up to date and does it contain the expected contact information including a Linkedin address? Does your resume contain the keywords employers will be looking for in 2012?

Contact Martin Buckland, Certified Professional Resume Writer, Certified Professional Branding Strategist and Certified Social Media Career Strategist at Elite Resumes for more information on managing your executive career in 2012.

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Are you ready to start blogging?

Tuesday, November 1st, 2011

Presenting at YRNEstablishing an online visibility utilizing social media is a basic requirement in managing a career or business. Once you have created your profiles on Facebook, Twitter and Linkedin as a professional or business or both, the next step is to enhance your presence and personal brand with a blog. Wikipedia provides further details regarding a blog, the name which is “a blend of the term web log”.

If you are familiar with blogs you may be subscribed to a number of feeds to receive the latest post, a  consistently updated informational or promotional article from a company or individual. This is an excellent opportunity to gain a wealth of information and reciprocate with a comment, enhancing your personal brand and google ranking. The key to establishing successful relationships online is not unlike networking in person. It involves engaging others in a reciprocal and respected manner.

Examples are abundant for all types of blogs and careful consideration should be given to the message you wish to share. Do you want to establish a blog based on personal or professional experiences? Is it intended to promote a service or business or your professional expertise? Perhaps you have the time to create more than one blog on varying topics? Whatever you decide, the greatest impact to establishing your personal brand is a consistent, genuine and authentic message.

The following blog from Danny Brown provides excellent advice for new bloggers:

12 Common Mistakes New Bloggers Make, Danny Brown

Still not sure if you are ready to start blogging? Read the answer from an executive recruiter to see how a potential candidate used social media to secure a job interview. Smartblog on Social Media, Mary Ellen Slayter

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Don’t Wear A Mask

Monday, October 31st, 2011

Custom - Joey Jordison - V for Vendetta - masksWearing a mask for a Halloween Party or any costume party can be exhilarating, mischievous or just plain fun! An occasion that many look forward to when it is acceptable to hide behind a mask, deceive others as to your true identity, assume the looks or personality of a favourite idol or simply seize the opportunity to scare the living daylights out of your friends!

Enjoy the party while it lasts because as a professional managing a career, this is the only time it will be acceptable to hide behind a mask or deceive others regarding your identity, history or qualifications. If you are in a job search, don’t wear a mask! Companies, recruiters and HR professionals are searching all available resources online, including Facebook to discover who you really are. Connections and testimonials on Linkedin as well as groups and companies you associate with all provide revealing information. Have you created Twitter lists for those you follow. What name have you given those lists and more importantly, what are the names of the lists that follow you? The name of these lists are a clear indication of how others perceive you.

The following are default images for profile photos on various social media sites and if not updated with professional images will leave a negative impression undermining your chances for consideration as a potential candidate.

 

 

 

Choosing to hide behind a mask will sabotage any effort to portray a credible, genuine and authentic brand. Don’t wear a mask online or off unless you’re off to a costume party.

Happy Halloween!

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Genuine, Authentic and Visible

Tuesday, October 11th, 2011

Visibility is key to establishing your brand in this highly competitive online market. Google has provided the ease of searching a single word to generate results in the millions. Searching for a product, place, data, professional, event, organization and more has never been easier.  To recognize the explosion of Internet use you need only note, Google Earth has been downloaded 1 Billion Times; a single app downloaded a billion times that provides the ability to search for satellite images from around the world, the population of Facebook users exceeds 700 million and over 80% of recruiters using Linkedin to search for potential candidates!

With billions of people creating and sharing infinite amounts of information online it is necessary to give serious consideration to how you will gain visibility as a professional to manage your career or business. Creating a Facebook Page, Twitter profile and Linkedin account are the absolute basics for an online profile and although these social media sites offer a significant google ranking, the key is being “social”.

Anyone can establish online profiles or a website but gaining the necessary visibility requires a great deal of input. Expanding networks, sharing content, providing comments; all are time consuming requirements but necessary to generate a positive, professional, genuine and visible brand. This is where caution is advised. Generating automated canned invitations, generating automated pages and comments are all becoming the norm but how beneficial is it?

Career or business, your reputation will be hinged on genuine, authentic content. Without it, you could be generating a negative impression. No one is interested in the millions of automated comments, which if not blocked are simply deleted as SPAM. A small network consisting of individuals you know based on personalized invitations will be more valuable than one twice the size consisting of total strangers.

Are you paying someone to send out these automated comments? “I like to read this. You have provided great information in your blog. I am very happy to read this blog.” Be sure you know what you are paying for,  Automated SEO, The Pitfalls and-Risks of Taking Shortcuts and ask for that second opinion. Is it doing more harm than good?

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Executive Career Management

Wednesday, September 28th, 2011

There are many resources  available to assist in managing your executive career and it is likely you have secured the services of a Certified Professional Resume Writer, Career Coach or Personal Branding Strategist. You may have invested in furthering your education to obtain additional accreditation’s and you are likely a paid member of various organizations. All are positive steps to managing a successful career. However, there is one more step that is sure to accelerate the success of your career and it is one which does not require a fee.

The one professional not directly linked to the organization or company that is seeking to hire their next candidate could be the most powerful connection to securing the job. If you really are good at what you do; if you are an expert in your industry, this is the individual who just might have you climbing your ladder to career success, two rungs at a time! Responsible for finding the perfect fit for the employer, it is the recruiter who will make the decision on the individual they believe best meets the criteria to present as a potential candidate.

Although the recruiter’s obligation is to the hiring company or organization, it is not possible to fulfill their mandate without their resource; professionals with the attributes necessary to assume the available position. Recruiters are key decision makers which makes them a valuable asset to your career. If you have not initiated a relationship or responded to the top recruiters in your industry you could be missing out on essential career advice and a chance to advance in your career.

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Public and Private Online Messages

Tuesday, September 13th, 2011

Wiertz Sebastien - PrivacyWhen to post an online comment publicly and when to post one privately should always be carefully deliberated. If there is any doubt how your comment will be received or if it could reflect negatively on you, don’t post it. There seems to be no shortage of public comments to inspire another blog reminding those to think before they post just as you should think before you speak. The difference is your oral comment will be a brief moment in time directed at a few rather than a permanent post in cyberspace for an audience of millions of people.

So often I see comments which are unfounded, rude, offensive or simply inappropriate. Surely this kind of behaviour and lack of professionalism is not generated from a conscious intent or purpose. Many will see a negative comment and immediately give the author a superstitious excuse such as, “they must have gotten up on the wrong side of the bed”. We simply don’t want to accept the spread of ill will as intentional.

In fact, I see so many inappropriate comments that I’ve decided it can’t possibly be a desire to publicly humiliate yourself or establish a negative personal brand but rather a lack of knowledge in the use of the various communication tools available. Take note of the following to ensure there is no mistake when you make a decision to post a private or a public online message:

When responding to an email the reply tab at the top allows you to Reply to Sender or Reply to All; choose wisely.

Text messaging from most phones allows for multiple recipients and forwarding.

If you’re using Twitter, What’s happening, retweets and @mentions are public. To send a private message select the recipient and choose the small envelope to the right.

Facebook allows you to post on your own wall and on a friends wall as well as commenting on other comments, tagging, and so much more which is all public however, you are able to select Privacy Settings from the drop down box under Account to allow friends of friends or just friends or a custom setting to sensor who will see your information. If you want to send a private message, select the recipient and then select Message at the top right. Keep in mind that although messages can be shared between two people the option is available to add people to the conversation in which case they will be able to see all the messages in the stream. There is also the option to forward any or all the messages to another party.

Linkedin is pretty consistent with many others with the option to compose a private message which can be sent to an established connection, to invite a new connection or initiate an introduction to connect. Privacy settings are available by selecting Settings from the drop down box under your name at the top right. Depending on the settings you choose, most of your activity will be public and posting an update will be shared with your connections.

Choose your settings carefully and if you decide your comments deserve public attention be sure the content will be suitable for many years to come!

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Jobs and Industries of the Past

Tuesday, September 6th, 2011

Will your current occupation or industry continue to be a viable one despite changing trends and technological advances? The Milkman, the Iceman, Telegraph Operator and Lector are just a few of the occupations described in this interesting article, The Jobs of Yesteryear; Obsolete Occupations. Long forgotten and for many, jobs never heard of, a list that will continue to grow as we move forward in time.

Managing a successful executive career entails due diligence in monitoring industry trends and global economic forecasts to ensure the career path you have established is a viable one. Change is inevitable, whether related to technology or trends and it is with knowledge and acceptance that you will gain the competitive edge necessary to maintain a successful career or secure consideration as a potential candidate in a job search.

A decision to seek a job producing or selling ice boxes when refrigerators and freezers were ramping up production to meet sales would not have been a prudent one. The impact of the rising price of oil on the auto industry has been apparent and you need only look at the selling price of a used Hummer and the decision to end production. The fate of the ice box or the Hummer was to many, foreseeable but there will always be those who, despite all indications otherwise did not agree. A lack of knowledge or a resistance to accept anything new had many refusing to buy a microwave. Did you have one in your home in the early 80′s?

In addition to staying current with industry and economic trends, history is a wonderful source for gaining knowledge and acceptance. You need only review the many jobs and industries of the past to understand the impact of technological advancements and economic conditions on a career. Today, there are many who do not believe an online presence is a key factor in managing a successful career or that mobile devices are overtaking sales of computers but not so long ago there were also those who did not believe the Wright brothers could fly either!

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Facebook Rivals Professional Sites

Monday, August 29th, 2011

If you thought your Linkedin profile was all you needed to maintain a successful professional online presence, you may want to review the following post from ere.net, Why Facebook Will Destroy Linkedin. Key factors include the numbers, Facebook with over 750 million users and Linkedin with 120 million users combined with what has been a slowly emerging acknowledgement that Facebook is not just for kids!

As you may have read in the many blog posts here at Elite Resumes, a Linkedin profile is the absolute minimum requirement for an online presence. It’s been over 2 years since a Certified Professional Resume has been written here that did not include a Linkedin address as part of the contact details. Although Facebook and Twitter addresses are not often included they have become the top search sites for HR professionals and recruiters. If you can’t be found it could be reason enough to eliminate you as a potential candidate due to insufficient corroborative information.

The following Facebook Page for businesses, https://www.facebook.com/business provides the information necessary to establish a page for your business but marketing your business is not so different from marketing yourself as a professional. The consumer may vary but the need to market and clearly brand a product to entice interest is the same. Your personal brand and a professional online profile highlighting your expertise is the marketing collateral necessary to sell yourself to HR professionals and recruiters. Most professionals are not experts in marketing and even those with expertise within the industry rarely succeed at marketing themselves so it is in your best interest to consider the resources offered by an executive career management professional.

A Facebook profile does provide the ability to manage friends by creating individual lists but creating a separate Facebook Page provides the opportunity to establish another professional presence with a highly significant Google ranking. The following links will take you to a few Facebook Pages that are getting noticed.

Social Media Examiner posts the finalists in their Top 10 Small Business Facebook Page contest.

http://www.facebook.com/ExecutiveCareerManagement

http://www.facebook.com/EliteResumes

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Twitter Job Search

Thursday, July 21st, 2011

Twitter is a social media site established in 2006 and currently has over 200 million users. What many may not be aware of is that Twitter is also an excellent job search resource. Jacob Share offers a Global Directory of Twitter job feeds in an article on JobMob, “an excerpt from my upcoming e-book The Ultimate Twitter Job Search Guide, a free download for subscribers of my Job Tips Newsletter.”

If you are managing your executive career in 2011, it is very likely you have a Linkedin profile and have your Linkedin address included in your contact data on your resume as well as within your online signature. Increasing your online presence is key to being found by HR professionals and recruiters and a Twitter profile has the potential to enhance your visibility and provide you with an excellent job search tool. There is no fee to create an account on either of these social media sites but it will require your time and attention to relay your personal brand and a clear message. You will need to share what your needs are and at the same time understand that social media is “online networking”. The entire premise of successful networking is not only relaying what your needs are but how you are able to help with the needs of others.

Another great resource is The Twitter Job Search Guide, authored by Susan Britton Whitcomb, Chandlee Bryan and Deb Dib

For additional executive career management tips follow @EMBACareerCoach, @EliteResumes and @MartinBuckland

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Mistakes Forgiven But How Many?

Wednesday, July 20th, 2011

Should I RUNE for co-op board?At one time or another we have all made spelling mistakes or grammatical errors and as such are usually open to forgive the odd one but if it is an obvious, complete and total, lack of attention to detail, disregard for the English language and absence of professionalism, it is not acceptable and should not be tolerated or forgiven.

Getting the message across is important and as much as I am opposed to the school curriculum today which teaches children to focus on the story and not to worry about spelling and grammatical errors, I do understand the emphasis on encouraging the development of expression and creative abilities. However, in my personal opinion, I believe our children are much more intelligent and capable than our school board does and have the ability to express themselves creatively and learn to spell and use proper grammar all at the same time! My daughter, an amazing writer of stories and poetry, graduated from Grade 8 with a Certificate in Literacy as well as an indifference to proper spelling and grammar.

Whether we blame our education system or our dependence on spell check programs, it is clear that the complacency regarding spelling and grammar mistakes needs to be addressed before we lose the ability to communicate altogether entirely. In a world of emails, texts and blogs, it is more urgent than ever that the message we send is a clear one and one which is free from spelling and grammatical mistakes.

Proper spelling and grammar are directly attributable to our ability to articulate properly and professionally. It is very likely that those carrying on a conversation and mispronouncing words such as acrossed, drownd or expresso would not do so if they had learned how to spell them correctly. Grammatical errors such as, please send it to Lauren and I rather than to Lauren and me, which is correct, are all too common.

The following email was received today and should further highlight the urgency of this issue:

Subject: Re: I have a couple of full time opportunity for a Busienss System Analyst
and i am wodnering if you know anyone who might be interested in it?

Hello xxxx,
How are you today? Hope all is well on this beuatiful day. I had two opprtunities for a BSA with (SDLC experience), two each in the Domains of Foreign Exchange or Derviatives (Capital Markets), for a Bank in downtown xxxx. 3 Years Domain with systems knowledge for intermediates and 5+ Years for a Snenior. So I though I would ask to see if you know anyone interested in it?
If you know anyone intereisted in any of these, please have them contact me, and I thank you in advance for any considerations that you may have in this matter!!
Regards,
xxxx

xxxx, President
H.B.Sc., M.Sc.Phm., Ph.D.

The time and effort necessary to avoid these blatant errors in spelling and grammar is negligible. Please use the resources that are so readily available in order to correct these mistakes; too many to forgive!

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What NOT To Post On Facebook!

Tuesday, July 12th, 2011

Everyone should know what not to post on Facebook without any further elaboration or explanation but that knowledge doesn’t always seem to have an impact on what actually does get posted. Social media has provided a platform that allows everyone to have a very influential voice. This is a privilege that should not be abused and one which should be managed with respect and responsibility.

Everyone has a choice in life between good or evil, happy or sad, positive or negative,  considerate or inconsiderate just as we have the choice to post it or not to post it. The best advice is to think before you post giving consideration to  your intent and to the impact your post will have on others. Do you actually have the facts surrounding your post? How will your message be received and could it negatively impact your reputation? Is it reflective of your personal or corporate brand? If your emotions are running high don’t post anything! This is not to say that sharing your opinion is the wrong thing to do but remember once it’s read you can’t ever take it back! For those who are so self-absorbed that they are unable to consider anyone else, you may want to refrain from ever posting anything.

We are not all the same but we can share the same expectation of consideration online as we do in person. Most of us are not going to walk up to someone and verbally assault them and nor should it ever be done online. Honesty and integrity should be the basis of all online profiles but it may be a difficult lesson when so many parents are allowing their children to lie about how old they are in order to establish a Facebook profile before the age requirement of 13 years. If anything, maybe some children will learn from the mistakes of adults but is this what they should see? Again, consideration must be given to EVERYONE who will see your post.

Jane Doe wrote:
“Now why would I go to your party, after YOU ARE HAVING AN AFFAIR with my now EX boyfriend. You are NOT a good friend “Sassy”! And I’m putting it out there for everyone to know. Watch your men around “Sassy!”

Most are likely already aware of Sassy’s reputation so what does this post really say about Jane Doe?

John Smith wrote:
“I hate my fat, lazy boss. Think I’ll call in sick tomorrow.”

John Smith might feel great about this post but I wonder how happy he will be when he loses his job?

Employers are using Facebook to review employees and solidify the candidacy of potential employees. Parents are checking the profiles of those we trust to teach and counsel our children. Family and friends are sharing information that will touch the closest of friends, acquaintances, children and grandparents. Professionals are networking and managing executive careers. Customers are checking businesses for quality products and services. How appropriate is your post? Will it show a lack of empathy, emotional stability or is it simply offensive?  If you need to deliberate over whether you should post it online, that’s a clear indication NOT to post it on Facebook!

Report: Facebook Wall Posts Are Full Of @#$%, “More than 60 percent of users have at least 10 pieces of what Socioclean calls inappropriate content, including profanity, drugs or alcohol.

The Star has a great article by Vanessa Lu, and the prevalence of employers utilizing social media as a resource to ELIMINATE potential candidates. Although organizations are popping up to clean up the mess, the most appropriate advice was from Ontario’s privacy commissioner Ann Cavoukian, “a simple message – think before you click”.

Visit the Facebook Page.

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Online Privacy Settings and Applications

Monday, July 11th, 2011

271/365 - 7/6/2011It is difficult to discuss social media or anything to do with a visible online presence without someone mentioning PRIVACY! My  immediate thought is always, “what is it about you that is so bad that you’re worried about the need to hide it?” If that isn’t the case and there truly are no deep dark secrets, perhaps the privacy issue is simply an excuse to explain the lack of an online presence.

Establishing an online presence is simply basic protocol for anyone managing a career or business so it is necessary to get beyond the fear surrounding the issue of privacy but that’s not to suggest that managing your privacy settings is not an important factor. The basis for a social media presence includes the top three sites, Linkedin, Twitter and Facebook and you will also need to set up your Google profile which will include the links within it to each of these sites. While establishing these profiles you will see that all provide privacy settings and it is important to review and understand your choices. It will help to look at the default settings as well as those which are recommended. Keep in mind that not everyone interested in you will be your best friend and you do not want key decision makers to avoid you because they think you are trying to hide something.

The number of applications developed for all of these sites continues to grow at an amazing rate linking information between various sites and continually expanding networks. If you have established any online profiles you may be surprised at the number of applications currently authorized to access to your site information and they should be reviewed on a regular basis. Most  will only offer the option to remove the application and others will have some further privacy settings associated with the site such as authorization to post on your wall. Regardless of some of these very reputable applications, I strongly suggest you maintain control over what is posted on your online profiles.

To find your applications on Linkedin, select the More tab at the right of the top bar which will provide a drop list with your current applications and the choice to Get More Applications. Twitter applications can be found by selecting Settings below your profile name and click Applications on the right. Facebook applications can be found by selecting Account on the right and then Privacy Settings and on the bottom left see Apps and Websites and below that, select edit your settings.

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Facebook Not So Bad!

Wednesday, July 6th, 2011

Not only is Facebook not so bad, establishing a Facebook Page could significantly increase your success if you are a professional managing a career or representing a business, organization or a cause. Misconceptions regarding age and privacy are still prevalent but the facts are available to dispel any concerns. The following quote is representative of the tremendous impact that Facebook has had!

“Until Facebook came along, there was hardly anywhere on the public internet that you had to operate with your real name.” David Kirkpatrick Author of The Facebook Effect

Facebook has truly been the driving force behind an authentic, genuine online presence. Of course there will always be those who will lack professionalism and post inappropriate content online but the opportunity is also there to recognize those who are mature, professional and accountable. Social media has changed the way we “do business” and it is that very thing, the transparency and engagement that is generating influential and positive results.

A reputable and talented professional with an exceptional track record has the ability to share that information linking it to companies, organizations and testimonials supported by other validated profiles. Businesses that are not interested in engaging clientele or lack a human presence will no longer gain the credibility needed to entice customers. As Facebook nears 700 million users, sharing their profiles, opinions, likes and dislikes, it continues to enhance the most powerful influence in our society, “word of mouth”!

Whether you are pursuing an executive career or an entrepreneurial endeavour a Facebook Page could add to your success. Keep in mind that your Facebook Profile is not the same as your Facebook Page. Review professional pages, including the Top 50 Branded Facebook Fan Pages, June 2011 by Jim Tobin to understand the difference and then decide which type of Facebook Page will best suit your needs.

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Career Suicide

Monday, June 27th, 2011

A professional online profile and networking are key to managing any successful career. At a recent speaking engagement for an executive networking group, HAPPEN, I advised the audience that failure to establish a profile on Linkedin is simply career suicide! I wondered if my comments might be a little harsh but on second thought realized they were absolutely necessary if I was going to provide the advice they needed to successfully manage their careers.

Here are the facts:

Linkedin is the #1 professional networking site

More jobs are secured through networking than all other job search tools combined

Over 80% of HR professionals and recruiters are seeking potential candidates online

Elite Resumes has been providing executive career management services since 1993. Contact Martin Buckland, Certified Professional Resume Writer, Co-Pilot Executive Coach, Certified Job & Career Transition Coach, Certified Job Search Trainer, Certified Professional Branding Strategist, Certified Employment Interview Professional.

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