Fool-Proof Job Creation Program

With all the media hype about job creation, America’s Job Coach knows of one way to get America working again… This includes the non-employed and the UNDER-employed. You know…under-paid, under-challenged, under-appreciated, etc.

The secret answer? Four words: “Do Something; Add Value”

Duh! Everyone knows the “take action” theme, right? Wrong. Knowing and doing are two different things.

Millions upon millions of people slog through their under or non-employed situations daily. “I do something everyday, Coach. What the heck are you talking about?”

Here is what I am talking about: Five DSAVs (Do Something; Add Value) you can do tomorrow to create your “better job situation:

1. See your employer’s business from the customer standpoint and figure out what is really missing. Don’t wait until your “analysis” is perfect…start the ball rolling now!

2. Pitch that opportunity gap to a trusted co-worker for “peer review” (or, befriend slowly a co-worker of influence who you can pitch your concept to). Ask the co-worker’s opinion of the best way to proceed.

3. Do an unsolicited “not my job” helpful thing for a person at work just as a way to brand yourself as helpful.

4. Volunteer to a charity for 2 hours tomorrow as a way to get out of the house/rut. Offer to staple fliers or even make fund-raising phone calls for them. Everyone hates fund raising but if you suck at it you’ll still be building a skill and they can’t cut your pay!

5. Leave 2 voice mails tomorrow for business leaders in an industry of interest to you. Find the leaders on LinkedIn and use the PHONE–not email, to do this. Say something like: I am/was a potential/current customer of your company and your firm would do better with XYZ if it were to: (insert your 20 second–no longer– customer-centric idea here). To discuss this more feel free to call me at xxx.xxx.xxxx.

Pie in the sky? No. Does this take some guts? Yes. The more you do it the more your contacts increase, and your confidence builds. It took over a 1,000 attempts to perfect the light bulb! Brett Favre threw more interceptions than anyone as he broke most all other passing records in the NFL.

What is your attempt and completion rate on the “DSAV 5?”

Duh! You REALLY Don’t Know What You Want?

At a recent job fair in Omaha, Nebraska America’s Job Coach was amazed at the number of people who DON’T KNOW WHAT THEY WANT TO DO!!

America’s Job Coach asked over 100 people there the question of “What kind of work are you looking for?” At least 50% said “I don’t know,” or “Oh, I can do a lot of things…”

WRONG!! If you are on a job hunt and expect an EMPLOYER to decide for you what you want to do with your life or what you should do for your work life, you most likely will have to KEEP looking for work.

Employers are looking for two things: 1.) People who can do a very specific task for them in an efficient, helpful, professional and educated way, or, 2) People who are “raw talent” who are incredibly moldable and who have such great attitudes the potential employer will just have to hire them if they are adding entry-level or general talent.

Which one are you?

“As a Customer Service Rep for your firm, I can retain and expand your customer base due to my strong people skills and business savvy.”

Most would agree that that kind of pitch will get you hired faster than, “Well, I can do a lot of things;” or, “I’m not sure what I want to do.”

Reminds me of the concept of a TwitterVator Speech which you can learn about at this link: here on YouTube.

Check it out and PLEASE have an answer for the question of ‘What do YOU want to do “out there?”

America’s Job Coach
Author: Laid Off & Loving It for 2010

State of DISUnion? Reinventing You and the Union

President Obama is currently telling the USA and the world about how this country will win the future by reinventing ourselves and our workforce. He says this nation is 9th in the world in earned college degrees! He says the future jobs will be won and held by innovators who are educating themselves and reinventing their skill sets. And I agree.

In my book, “Laid Off & Loving It for 2010,” I describe 30 people who built on their skills and reinvented themselves. America’s Job Coach has reinvented himself several times over the years. My advice to that 55 year-old college student the president mentioned in his speech, is that she should appear to be moldable and teachable when she goes on job interviews.

How about you? Can you be like the woman from (I think) South Carolina who is, at age 55, now going to college and studying biotech. More power to her–I hope she competes well with the 22 year-olds with their newly minted degrees. I vote for her in the job as she competes with those “kids” –life experinece rules!

Obama is also championing the role of teachers as nation-builders in the new world economy. How about you? If/when they actually do raise teacher incomes could YOU build our nation by building our youth? Millions of baby boomers are going to retire from classrooms in the next 10 years and there is a growing younger population due to current immigration and birth trends. Teaching is rewarding and important. How about YOU?

It may have been Mother Theresa who said we can make a better world if we start by sweeping our own back steps. Kinda ties in with the theme of Union inside yourself.

If you are struggling with knowing what to do, then here is your answer: DO SOMETHING. IF you have disunion in your head or your heart, take some kind of action and reinvent yourself.

So don’t be disunified–go out and do big things. Dream big and may God Bless the United States!

America’s Job Coach
http://www.americasjobcoach.com

“I’m a Goof-Up…Hire Me!”

Will you work again after your layoff? Did you put in a lengthy, and maybe even a well-paid career and then get laid off before discovering that it is HARD to find something close to your old level? And did this happen when your are supposed to be at your earnings peak? According a September New York Times story, 2.2 million of the 15 million unemployed are over 55 years old !

So what to do? Will the economy be able to absorb those 2.2 million “mature” workers?

A blog commenter recently told me employers usually look at younger employees as “cheaper.” And, on paper they are, but we concurred that the EXPERIENCE “older” workers bring is invaluable and diminishes the perceived savings younger workers offer.

Why? Because of the MISTAKES you have made along the way. Employers should hire you because you have goofed up. You have (I hope) learned how to NOT to make those mistakes again. A younger person has to LEARN those things yet–on his/her employer’s dime.

You’ve been through the probation period and as they say, are “closer to money,” instead of costing employers money.

So, turn all the dumb things you have done over 20 or 30 years of working into an ASSET. Share with an employer how you are immediately productive and know where all the bodies are buried (good Halloween metaphor). Why should they invest in a slowly developing “project” (inexperienced person) when you are available to AVOID all those costly mistakes right now?

Use this philosophy when you feel potential employers think younger people are more hip with the latest technology (they usually are) and more flexible (they often are–learn from them!).

…But YOU can learn the tech stuff AND go on to help your employer navigate through the graveyard of this economy toward a less terrifying bottom line!!

How do you share this new asset with the world? Through your TwitterVator Speech of course. Your TwitterVator Speech is your elevator speech and your USP put into 140 CHARACTERS or less. It is a tool explained in my book, “Laid Off & Loving It for 2010.” Have one and show employers that you too are “hip.” You don’t even to have to use www.twitter.com to have a TwitterVator Speech, but don’t tell anyone that!

I’m in a Trick or Treat mood…I’ll give away 5 treats this week…the first 5 people who contact me via this blog or through my website, www.americasjobcoach.com will get a free TwitterVator Speech from me. Send me a note and you’ll be on your way to a free, cool, hip, and importantly, HELPFUL TwitterVator speech!!

And remember to keep goofing up a little…that means that you are still learning and still trying!

Paul David Madsen
America’s Job CoachAuthor: Laid Off & Loving It for 2010 — Rebuilding Your Career or Business With Social Media’s Help

Will You Ever Work Again?

Just read an article about “older” workers (45 and older) who fear that after they have been laid off they’ll never work again. Frightening !

They put in lengthy, sometimes well-paid careers and after they have been cast aside during a layoff or downsizing, they can’t find anything close to what they had. And this happens during the years when they are supposed to be at their earnings peak. According to this New York Times story 2.2 million of the 15 million unemployed are over 55 years old.

So what to do? Will the economy be able to absorb 15 million people who are now out of work? Or even 1/2 of that amount?

What will you do if it can’t?

I’d love to hear your comments here: Share with the readers how people you know (or you yourself) have reinvented themselves (yourself).

Do you know of a corporate accountant who now runs an antique shop? How about a purchasing director who now is a locksmith. Are they “making it?” Tell us your story and inspire others!

Paul David Madsen
America’s Job CoachAuthor: Laid Off & Loving It for 2010 — Rebuilding Your Career or Business With Social Media’s Help

Don’t Be a “99er”

Just heard a new term the other day…”A 99er.” Those of you who are on long-term unemployment compensation through your state know what that is: After 99 weeks on unemployment, the government stops paying you.

Is this right? Should this happen? What about folks who are trying to find a job but just can’t…does the government owe them even more than 99 weeks of unemployment insurance compensation? Sound off via a comment on this blog if you’d like.

99 weeks is nearly two years. America’s Job Coach thinks most folks should be able to find SOME kind of job in that amount of time. Yes, many will have to move down since the kind of job they used to do at their old pay rate may not exist anymore.

AJC says that if the best accomplishment you have on your resume for the last two years is your strong ability to cash an unemployment check, then you don’t have very much appeal to a potential employer if you do luck into a job interview!

Do it…take something to have something. You may take a pay cut from the unemployment rate in order to get one of these “move down” jobs. But again, you will show a potential “real” employer (the kind you used to have) that you are ambitious enough to do “whatever it takes.”

I know there are thousands of actual cases of discrimination, disability and disproportionate pay etc. out there. I am not trying to make anyone mad here and realize there is always a story behind the story.

I am simply suggesting that all of us need to focus on contributing to any employer (or customer if you form your own little firm while you job hunt) while you work to avoid becoming a 99er.

You can do it!! Maybe some coaching videos from Doug Hindman (jobsearchguru channel) on Youtube.com can help.

Paul David Madsen
America’s Job Coach
Author of “Laid Off & Loving It For 2010”

PS: For your blog’s traffic improvement copy and paste this “trafic-building” tale tory on yours:

I used http://www.google.com to see a http://www.yahoo.com story about http://www.amazon.com, a company which sells http://www.dell.com products and their staff eats @ http://www.mcdonalds.com and drinks at http://www.starbucks.com and shops at http://www.walmart.com. I used http://www.wikipedia.com to teach me about http://www.youtube.com which has links to http://www.facebook.com and http://www.linkedin.com which ties in with http://www.wordpress.com which ties into the classic, http://www.growmedia.com.

When the Saints Come Marching In…to Tackle Betty White

Congratulations to the New Orléans Saints for their exciting win in Superbowl 44. They finished a storybook season with a thrilling win over the favored Indianapolis Colts.

The overhyped Superbowl franchise got what it wanted: An exciting game which kept folks glued to their set. And that was a good thing for America. A good thing for America?

It is good because Superbowl ads are the last holdout of the office water cooler chatter. With many Americans using cable or something like Direct TV with hundreds of stations of content, we are a “fractured nation.”

Gone are the days of “I Love Lucy” playing out of everyone’s living room at the same time on the same evening. Gone are the days when we relied on one guy, Walter Cronkite, for our news.

Why do Superbowl ads help this? With its 100 million viewers, it is the last show “everyone” watches. I was at the grocery store hours before the game. I couldn’t find a parking spot because “everyone” was getting goodies for their Superbowl party!

So, when people gather at the office or the plant or the conference call during the week after the big game, they’ll come together more united. They’ll talk about how Betty White (age 88) took a full tackle in the mud to help out Snickers. They’ll giggle together about the Doritos Potato Chip dog’s shock collar antics. And this is a good thing.

Good because the nation needs these 30 second novellas. People in the workforce need to feel a common bond. With layoffs hitting harder and workforces stretched to the bone, we as a nation need something light, something centering, and something uniting to at the water cooler.

Thanks Betty for the unity and the laugh!

America’s Job Coach
http://www.americasjobcoach.com

“SHE-Shoring” During This “HE-cession”

“HE-cession” means that during this recession, the unemployment rate for men is 10.7 %, but the unemployment rate for women is “just” 8.1%. This term was coined, I believe, by David Zincenko of Mens’s Health in a USA Today op ed piece. Let me know if I am wrong.

So, are employers “SHE-shoring?” America’s Job Coach invented this term while reading about the He-cession. We’ve heard for years how women are paid less than men for similar work. Some studies say up to 30% less! I am not a statistics guru, but I think we can all agree that in too many cases, women earn less than their male peers for similar work.

Now add to the mix that fact that this recession has been slightly “less cruel” to women. Fewer women than men have lost their jobs, according to the Bureau of Labor Statics (8.1% verses 10.7%). My question: Why?

SHE-shoring is “Offshoring Gone Female.” Offshoring, in case you have been under a rock for a dozen years, is where a company ships chunks of its work off US shores to countries like India, China, Mexico, Ireland, and a host of other places. Employers “offshore” tasks to locations to try to save labor costs. And firms often layoff US staff after completing the offshoring.

Computer work, customer support work, manufacturing etc. are often functions which see work offshored but all professions are being touched by this trend. Even some USA fast food restaurants will use an offshored person to take your order over the drive through window. That person then sends your order over the Internet to the locals who cook and wrap your triple cheeseburger.

So can I blame that China-based fellow for the lack of honey mustard in my chicken nuggets bag? I suppose it was the local guy who stiffed me on the dip though. But hey, they are communicating across the globe so it is no wonder my sauce is missing sometimes! As Thomas L. Friedman has aptly pointed out, The World Is Flat.

So, most major companies have embraced some level of Off-Shoring to save labor costs. Do they therefore, have a grand design or plan to lay off women less often than men? If a Fortune 1000 company sends work overseas to save money, doesn’t it make sense that they also would lay off their most expensive people first? Does this explain the He-cession? If a gender pay gap exists inside a company, does ACME layoff Harry or Harriet? Is Joe sent packing before Joan?

Who knows what goes on in executive minds when they are deciding what staffers to cut. Now however, statistics imply that men are harder targets for the layoff axe than are their wives, sisters, moms and daughters.

Who cares? You should. This blog exists to help people get on their feet during a career transition. Part of that is knowing the look of your playing field. If you are a male looking for work or a better job, be aware of SHE-Shoring. If you are a female looking for work or a better job, be aware of SHE-shoring. It is critical to know your competition when job hunting.

I heard a story about a guy who was prepared to answer the salary negotiation question with, “I’ll take $100 a year less than my closest competitor for this job.” The tale is likely anecdotal, but you get the idea about being aware of your compeition…He-cession, SHE-shoring, and all.

Kindly share your SHE-Shoring or He-cession story or comments with this job coaching community!

America’s Job Coach
Author, “Laid Off & Loving It for 2010”

Will Santa Bring New Jobs?

According to this, Santa or the Easter Bunny may be bringing us some new employment opportunities!  Check out what the Jacksonville Business Journal has to say!

 

Economists predict first-quarter hiring – Jacksonville Business Journal:.

Are They Beating A Path to Your Door?

America’s Job Coach spent Saturday, November 14 at the Nebraska Book Festival in Lincoln, NE at the Nebraska State Historical Society. I was there to network and promote “Laid Off and Loving It For 2010.” There were approximately 40 vendors present who set up tables to “hawk” their books or book-related services. Public foot traffic was good and the event had good guests, award winners, and presenters. On hand was Ted Kooser, National Poet laureate and Harley Jane Kozak, Hollywood actress and successful novelist/mystery writer. Harley presented a great writing workshop.

I hear you asking “How does that apply to me and my quest for a job upgrade?” Here is the answer:

P and N which means: PROMOTION and NICHE.

Over the next couple of blog posts, I’ll discuss how several authors and booksellers at the festival have had good success selling their books. Their sales did not come from events like the festival alone. Few had customers beating a path to their table (door).

Yet, many of the exhibitors present told me how they have had reasonable success selling their books. Why? How did the booksellers there sell thousands of books over the years? A quick glance at their topics answers the question:

It is their NICHES. Their lovely books were on topics of interest to MAYBE 1% of the book-reading population. BUT, and this is a big “but,” that 1% was / is loyal, devoted, passionate, and are HAPPY to spend $19.95 or $29.95 or whatever on a book that applies to THEM.

I’ll discuss specific examples in the next couple of posts, but in the meantime I challenge you to translate nichemanship into your professional goals and lives:

What skills, knowledge, experience, training, background, activities, passions, volunteer projects, unique family situations, workplace histories do YOU possess that can be “exploited” to a job market niche out there, or into a small business endeavor?

For example, were you part of a growth industry in the past but that industry isn’t as hot now? Well, how can you package that experience into something that a present day, fast-growth employer will appreciate? Even though your experience may have been in a different industry, your skills CAN translate into helping a new company in a different industry because you have “been there, done that.” Who else may need those skills?

As always, kindly send your comments of examples of your successes or failures along this line to this blog. I’d love to hear how tight, niche marketing helped or hurt YOU. And the gentle readers of this blog stand ready to offer helpful advice as always. Which niche will you own?

Next posts: specific examples of personal niche marketing!