Tag Archives: Marketing

REFERENCES AND YOU

BY: Adam Gavriel

If you’re lucky enough to be in the middle of the hiring process, but can’t seem to push past the point of the interview, this blog may be for you.

After the hiring manager views your resume and your cover letter, and perhaps even after the company interviews you, you may need a little bit more to set you over the top of the competition. This is where your references will come in.

Unfortunately, choosing a great reference isn’t as easy as it would seem. There might also be a few great references out there that you can use that are more “outside the box.”

Last week, USNews.com posted a great article about choosing your references. Here are a few of their tips:

If you have many references from a long career, try to find the three or four best connections and fit it to one page. You don’t want to overwhelm hiring managers with too long of a list. Also, as you would with a resume and cover letter, tailor your list of references to the job position you are applying for. Use references from the same industry whenever possible.

 Although you may not think so, family and friends can be viable options under certain circumstances. If you were in a professional relationship with a family member or a friend, it is okay to utilize these connections as a professional reference, and ONLY as a professional reference.

Unfortunately, not all of us out there are seasoned in the workforce. If you’re a recent graduate, don’t discount utilizing professors or summer job supervisors as a reference. These are the professionals that are going to know your work habits best.

Despite your relationship, it is wise to include a recent boss. Some employers may find it suspicious if your most recent employer is missing from you references page; this is especially important if this boss is a professional within your current industry.

Most importantly, it is important to keep your references in the loop. Ask permission to use connections as a reference. You don’t want to have your connections blindsided by a call. It’s never a bad thing to thank a reference, but if you have enough it is also wise to rotate your references. You don’t want the same professionals getting bombarded with calls; keep your list fresh.

As a professional search firm and employment agency, we implore you to use us, Crossroads Consulting, as your main reference. With direct ties to all the job listings we currently have, your best and most glowing recommendation will come from us. If you would like, it is important to think of us as your main connection to the job. We can get your information in there directly to the hiring manager, along with our recommendation of you as a professional.

As a full service employment agency, we want to be around from the first step you take towards finding a new career, to the last step you take walking into the office as an employee. At Crossroads Consulting, our mission is to put the ‘human’ back into ‘human resources’ and it all starts with you.

TIME FOR SOME JOB SEEKING TIPS

BY: Adam Gavriel

The world that we live in is ever changing, and change sparks change everywhere.

Today’s job search is not like the job search of yesteryear, and this can be a very difficult change for workers who find themselves on the job market, a place they may not have been for twenty years. With all change, there is always an opportunity to take advantage and those who can find those opportunities first are destined to succeed.

Take Blockbuster for example. Had Blockbuster embraced the emergence of the Internet and video streaming, they would still be a leader in the media industry. Unfortunately for Blockbuster, they weren’t first to the finish line and Netflix came in and revolutionized the way viewers get their media. A report in June shows that Netflix has 89% of the current market share of television show streaming services.

The Internet has revolutionized the world, and your job search is no different. No longer are newspaper classifieds where to look. Nearly every part of the job search for every company is done online. There are ways to manipulate the system to take initiative and make sure you’re getting out there as best you can. Here are a few tips…

  1. Do whatever you can to make it personal. Sending a cover letter? Personalize it. Try your hardest to find the name of the hiring manager that you are sending your information to and personalize everything. It’s also not very hard to find the e-mails of people within the company. Generally it is one of three choices. (firstname)@company.com. (First name initial followed by last name)@company.com. and (firstname.lastname@company.com). If your guess is wrong, your e-mail client will deliver a failed attempt to you instantly. Try again. This all of course assuming that the employees e-mail isn’t directly listed on their website!
  2. Use as many sources as you can. The obvious choice in this matter is of course LinkedIn, but that’s not your only opportunity. Twitter is also a great avenue to connect with other professionals in your field. Follow your colleagues and begin a conversation. With LinkedIn, don’t be afraid to send a connection request, ask for an introduction from a mutual connection, or send an inmail. You’ll find many professionals are eager to help.
  3. Start a blog. No, seriously, start a blog. If you’re unemployed, start a blog focused on your industry. Find an article posted by a colleague and respond or expand to it, mention them on Twitter to take a look at your blog. Get your ideas and expertise out there in original ways. Stand out from the crowd. 

These three quick tips are a great start to get you on your way to manipulating the system to work in your favor. Of course, if you’re still having difficulty breaking in and getting the motions started, contact us here at Crossroads Consulting. As an employment agency, our job is to get you working again. With job openings that we are looking to fill TODAY across the nation, we are eager to hear from you. We don’t only want you resume; we want to really hear you. Your stories, your past, how is your job search going? Our mission as a professional search firm is to put the ‘human’ back into ‘human resources.’ And that mission can only start when you pick up the phone, or hit ‘compose’ on your e-mail software.

LET’S GET SOMETHING STRAIGHT – WE’RE HERE TO HELP

BY: Adam Gavriel

If you have been keeping up with the blog here at OutOfOurMind, you may realize that the name is fitting to the personality.  You especially understand this concept if you’ve taken a jump over to CrossroadsConsulting.com to check out our unique job postings.  On our website you won’t read the kind of coma-inducing  job postings you find virtually everywhere on the web when you’re looking for jobs. Crossroads Consulting differentiates itself from the competition in that our ads are, “Fresher-and-Bolder,” (to borrow the name of Bill O’Reilly and Dennis Miller‘s travelling comedy show).

Obviously there’s the elements there that you need to know when you read a job description, i.e., the qualifications and such, but there is also a boat load of humor and personality; something desperately missing from the employment market.  Continue reading

LINKEDIN – HOOKUP FOR WORK

BY: Adam  Gavriel 

You may have found yourself reading our last blog here on why submitting resumes online is like throwing them into a black hole, and perhaps gotten a bit down in the dumps. We understand that not everyone is going to have that “inside man” that they need to get their resume to the right person and get that best chance of being hired (that’s why we so highly recommend using us! More on that later).

What LinkedIn provides to the user is a way to try and meander their way inside.

LinkedIn, in its essence, is the everyday market place for hiring, looking for work, and making connections. The big three in what it takes to get from the unemployment line to the bank. LinkedIn has its uses whether you’re a recruiter, someone looking for work, or a company looking to expand your market value and awareness.

First off, if you don’t have a LinkedIn profile, make one today. If you Google yourself, you’ll find that the first thing that comes up (if you have a profile) is your LinkedIn profile. If I Google my own name, it goes in this order: LinkedIn, and my two Twitter profiles. If a company is seriously looking at making you their new hire, you better believe that they’re going to be putting in the research on you.

With a LinkedIn profile, these companies will find all the useful information they need to find on you in one place. LinkedIn is like having another digital resume to re-affirm everything you’ve already told to the company.

Some quick tips for LinkedIn users:

Make sure your profile is 100% complete. This means having all of your work experience on there (benefit, it can be longer than one page on LinkedIn), having a photograph of yourself (keep it professional, this isn’t Facebook!), and even including what areas you’re looking for work. Right away companies can see everything they need to know about you. This is your “home base” for LinkedIn, and what hiring managers will be looking at.

LinkedIn provides a much deeper service though, as it is also an online job board. Utilize the “saved searches” function and make sure you set it to update to your e-mail as often as you need it. You can have multiple saved searches where you change a keyword, or you can have a saved search for all the locations that you’d like to keep available to you. With the e-mail update function, you’ll have a weekly reminder that there are more jobs that you should be looking at within your saved searches.

One of the most underrated functions of LinkedIn is that on all the job ads, it is visible who posted the ad. Not just the company, but the LinkedIn user that posted that specific job ad. This makes it much easier to personalize your cover letter and trust me, that goes a long way.

Unlike Facebook, on LinkedIn you can even see who views your profile page. If you upgrade to LinkedIn pro (which comes highly recommended) you can see a full list of those who view your profile. LinkedIn pro also gives you the opportunity to send an “InMail” to another LinkedIn user, providing another way to get your foot in the door, and keep those connections climbing.

In a recent update, LinkedIn has allowed users to “endorse” other users on their skills. We understand the want to keep all your connections happy; however we HIGHLY recommend that you do not endorse anyone whose work you cannot specifically vouch for. If you endorse blindly, it looks bad for you and the user that you have endorsed. If you are going to take the time out of your day to endorse another user, make it count, and make sure it’s from the heart.

That should be enough to get you going and get yourself started on LinkedIn and building your professional network.

If you do decide to join LinkedIn today, remember to follow us at Crossroads Consulting to keep up with all things in our recruiting world.

At Crossroads Consulting we want to be your first step in busting out into the career of your dreams. With job openings spanning across the nation, and a resume service, there’s no excuse to not be contacting us today!

Remember, we’re here to put the ‘human’ back into ‘human resources

SUBMITTING RESUMES TO A BLACK HOLE

BY: Adam Gavriel

When you’re looking for a job, it might be best to search for recruiters, or smaller job boards, rather than the company’s website that you’re looking for.

This may seem like an odd concept to you, but think about it. If you’re submitting your resume through the company’s own website, you’re file is just another blip on the radar in the companies feed of resumes for that day.

In this Sunday’s New York Times, the author referred to this process as “submitting your resume to a black hole.” This trend will only continue to grow the more important the internet becomes in the hiring process.

Best case scenario for searching for a new job these days seems to be having an “in” with the company that you’re looking at. Knowing a current employee of the company who can put your resume in the hands of the right people.

The article reports:

“Some, like Ernst & Young, the accounting firm, have set ambitious internal goals to increase the proportion of hirings that come from internal referrals. As a result, employee recommendations now account for 45 percent of nonentry-level placements at the firm, up from 28 percent in 2010.”

“The company’s goal is 50 percent. Others, such as Deloitte and Enterprise Rent-A-Car, have begun offering prizes like iPads and large-screen TVs in addition to traditional cash incentives for employees who refer new hires.”

Ernst & Young nearly doubled their new hires from employee recommendations. This is a trend that is here to stay. And judging by their goal of 50% in-house recommendation hires, you can believe they’re going to continue to trend upwards; making it that much harder for the thousands of people who are submitting their resumes online with no destination in sight.

Unfortunately for many, the connections we have are either unavailable to help at the moment, or are simply unapproachable. This can be due in large part to the fact that many Americans are currently suffering from long-term unemployment and haven’t been able to make new connections in the professional world. According to the Times, 4.8 million Americans have been out of work for 27 weeks or more, three times as many as in late 2007.

These are numbers that are just simply unacceptable as the American economy continues to rise and fall, rise and fall, with no level consistencies to be found.

Think about it this way. If you take a look at our website over at Crossroads Consulting, you’re going to see over 50 job postings across the nation that we’re looking to fill for companies today. By going through us, rather than the company itself, we can guarantee that someone will actually be looking at your resume with an open mind, and once we get it, it will go right into the hands of the important people at the hiring company. This seems infinitely better than the system where you just hit ‘submit resume’ and pray that it’s all going to click at that moment.

Referred candidates are twice as likely to land an interview over other applicants. Let us, the recruiter, be your referral and gateway into the organization.

We want to help. Our job is to get you working again and we are here to help. Remember here at Crossroads Consulting we are trying to put the ‘human’ back into ‘human resources.’

TWELVE TIPS FOR 12-12-12

BY: Adam Gavriel

Whether you follow the American DD/MM/YY model, or the European MM/DD/YY model of the date, today’s date is 12/12/12, the last repeating date of this century. To me, this is just another one of those menial things that people tend to make a big deal about for a little bit, and then forget soon after. However this date could bring more in significance due to Madison Square Garden’s 12/12/12 concert to benefit the victims of Hurricane Sandy tonight, which is sure to be a fantastic event. But I digress…

In honor of the day, here are 12 tips to hopefully get you hired faster!

  1. Make sure your resume is right. Nothing turns off HR professionals quicker than a poorly written resume. Make sure your spelling is correct, and your grammar is top notch.
  2. Include a cover letter. The cover letter seems to be a lost art these days. I know when I get cover letters; I read them word for word. It’s another area to talk about your skills a little more in-depth than your resume to make sure the hiring professional has the most information necessary to gauge your skills.
  3. Connect. Connect. Connect. You never know when your neighbor, acquaintance, friend of a friend, friend, old boss, old co-worker, etc… etc… can come in handy in letting you know about that opportunity you’ve been waiting for.
  4. Take care of your “online persona.” This goes double for recent grads. One of the first thing potential employers is going to do is Google your name. Make sure your Facebook profile is clean, or the privacy settings are set to the max.
  5. LinkedIn. More people need to utilize LinkedIn. I myself have a Facebook profile, a LinkedIn profile, a few online blogs, and a couple of Twitter accounts. When I Google my name the first hit that comes up, aside from a few windsurfing videos of an Israeli man who shares my name (lucky for me), is my LinkedIn profile.
  6. References and recommendations, get them and use them. Another area where LinkedIn comes in handy as friends or employers are able to easily write recommendations for you.
  7. Utilize all available outlets. There are plenty of job boards on the web, not to mention job postings on company websites. The jobs are out there people, find them! (we can help you there….)
  8. Stay productive. As we’ve preached here before, time unemployed is not vacation time. Learn a new skill to put on your resume to set yourself apart from the millions of others out there looking for work. Learn a new language; make sure you utilize all outlets to help you get that position.
  9. If an application allows you to submit samples of your work, DO IT. Self-explanatory here. If you’re applying online and the website allows you to add a sample of work, do it. Writing samples, a work sample, any sample you can think of, upload it. You would be automatically ahead of everyone in the process who skipped that step.
  10. Phone interviews are not phony. If you’re lucky enough to get to this step, make it count. The phone interview is the screening process between those the company is willing to bring in in-person, and those who they will not be “wasting” their time on anymore.
  11. Don’t get down, and keep at it. We know the job-searching process is frustrating and can be, at times, downright devastating. More and more Americans each day are giving up their search to find employment. We implore you to stay at it, and help us get the countries unemployment levels back to a reasonable number!

And of course, last but not least…

  1. USE US HERE AT CROSSROADS CONSULTING!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! We are here to help, no way around it. With over 50 current job openings across the nation, and resume optimization services, there is no reason NOT to be checking us out and asking us to assist you in your search for employment.

It is our belief that the job-hunting process should be relatively stress free, and we try to accommodate that mentality into our everyday work ethic. Remember, we’re here to put the ‘human’ back into ‘human resources.’

Contact us today!

5 R’s

BY: Adam Gavriel

In business when the bottom-line is the be-all end-all of the company (which let’s just admit here, most of the time it is) companies need to focus on retaining their talent. It’s no secret that the more money a company makes, the more personnel it can hire. And of course, with all the focus on the unemployment rate, with the 2012 Presidential Election tomorrow, isn’t that what the big-picture is all about these days? Companies need to be able to bring in talent, but more important than that is retaining their human capital.

Most business models will tell you that it is cheaper to promote from within, to keep employees around rather than make a new-hire. These may be  discouraging words for some of you who may find yourself out of work these days, but they’re true words that need to be heard. This particular entry on our  blog will be a little more targeted to the companies rather than the individual.

David K. Williams, a contributor to Forbes.com, wrote an article entitled “The 5 R’s For Building Lifelong Relationships With Employees.For those of you familiar with the NBC comedy, “The Office,” my mind also shot right away to Michael Scott whose goal in the office was to not only keep the medium-sized paper company afloat in tough times, but to make his employees part of his life. And of course who could ignore the scene from “Rookie of the Year” where pitching coach Brickma (played by the movie’s director, Daniel Stern) teaches 12 year old Chicago Cubs rookie pitcher Henry Rowengartner the “three R’s” to being a big league pitcher: readiness, recuperation, and conditioning. Luckily for Forbes.com, Mr. Williams actually stuck to the letter ‘R.’

Here are Mr. Williams’ 5 R’s…

Responsibility

This is a great one. It’s important to show your employees that you trust them. Not only that however, is the delegating of projects that utilize skills that an opening position within the company might require. By this the company could be operating a somewhat “extended period of training” on employees that they have already hired.

Respect

Just a little bit.

I think respect speaks for itself in this aspect. Positive reinforcement is never a bad idea from a boss to an employee. Show your employees they’re not only appreciated, but necessary in the work team. If an employee feels as if they belong, they will be less likely to search for work elsewhere.

Revenue-Sharing

A bit of a tough one here to include in the list. It would be nearly impossible to tie revenue-sharing to all employees wages. While performance bonuses are quite common in the workplace these days, it would be quite difficult to tie an exact number to employees’ wages. Just ask the National Hockey League how difficult revenue sharing can be.

Reward

Of course very similar to revenue-sharing, rewards can be so much more than money. Plaques, company related property (a leather bound folder with a logo, or clothing) or even just a team dinner can go a long way in showing the respect (back to that ‘R’) that a boss has for his or her employees.

Relaxation Time

This is a new trend entering the work-place. As my generation (Gen-Y) enters the workforce, many of my peers expect to have significant time to spend away from work; with their families or future families that they plan on having. A very contrasting change from the previous Gen-X and Baby-Boomer generation who might have just expected work-time to be work time, and any family interaction after that was simply a gift. Gen-Y’ers might also expect work-time to not always be so stressful, and not only be about work. It’s an interesting concept, but it is a trend that seems to be rapidly changing within the workforce as more and more Generation-Y babies enter their professional lives.

And there are Mr. Williams’ “5 R’s” with a bit of commentary to boot.

Remember though, if you are a job hopeful looking to enter a company that believes in these standards, here at Crossroads Consulting we work with great companies all across the nation to get American’s working. At Crossroads Consulting we believe fully in these 5 R’s and we express that belief from our employees to the clients we work with. Everybody deserves that chance at respect, and we will be sure to read your resume from top to bottom. We also have services to help you out including resume optimization and interview preparation. We’re not only trying to get you working, but we’re here to put the ‘human’ back into ‘human resources.’