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Career Strategies

7 Tips to Networking for a Great Job Now

coffeeThis is a great time of year to look for a job. I was hired for all four of my corporate jobs in December for a January start.

I know that companies are hiring for Q1 – they have new budgets and projects. It is a slower time in the office and employees have more time to network. In addition, holiday parties are frequent and you can meet new people.

I would like to share 7 proven tips to getting your online presence ready, putting your best smile forward and getting that fabulous job for 2015:

1. BE MINDFUL – I have networked with over 78,333 people and I can quickly assess their intent. I have an assessment I call TUGS: I have found that people are usually in one of 4 areas: Takers, Users, Givers or Sharers. You know what I mean, don’t you? You have encountered each type, I’m sure.

Make sure that you are clear about your intention while you are networking. I make sure to set goals, such as who I want to meet, what advice I desire, and how I can help others. When I was in the employee engagement practice at Carlson, my team and I did work on the importance of emotional targets or “how do you want people to feel after they meet you?”

There are 4 emotional targets – after you meet someone, you want people to feel that you’re warm, authentic (genuine), empathetic and positive. My business partnerRisë Kasmirski helps people in job search become more mindful. She asks them ‘who are you?’ and ‘where do you want to go?’

TIP: Do a self-assessment, which type of a TUGS are you? Consider how you want people to think of you and feel about you after you meet with them, both in person and online.

2. BE CLEAR – before you begin to network, while in job search, be clear on what you desire: the job title that you want, why a company would hire you, and what your values are. My business partner and personal brand strategist, Kathleen Crandall,has 2 questions she asks our clients: 1) ‘what happens because of you?’ and 2)‘what 3 things do you aspire to be known for?’ These are foundational questions that you should be able to answer before you network especially with employees in the company that you are targeting, with recruiters or people that could refer you to hiring managers.

TIP: Reflect on Kathleen’s questions. Read The 20 Minute Networking Meeting byMarcia Ballinger, a highly regarded national recruiter who has created a step by step process for networking for success.

3. BE TRUSTWORTHY – say what you mean, mean what you say, and do what you say you are going to do. This means to be sure to follow up in a timely manner – and with thank you notes. I have a strategy when someone invites me to connect on LinkedIn where I ask myself:

  • can they help me once?
  • will they help me twice?
  • will they help my network?

When I invite someone to LinkedIn I ask myself:

  • can I help them once?
  • will I help them twice?
  • can I help their network?

When connecting on LinkedIn, I coach my clients to always write a personalized LinkedIn invitation. If I receive an invitation without a personal message I always review their profile to see who we have in common, then I click Reply Don’t Acceptand I write them a message; “Hi X, Thanks for the invitation to connect. I see that we are both connected to X. What did you have in mind that I can support you with today?” I wait 3 weeks and if they don’t respond then I click Ignore. I assume that they won’t be as likely to help my connections if they don’t reply back to me.

TIP: Be someone people want to help twice – this is a small town (where ever you live). Always personalize your LinkedIn invitations.

4. BE FOUND – look good, update your LinkedIn and other online profiles. Make sure that you have a great photo, targeted headline, current job title and company information, a summary that tells a story about who you are and what you can do for others, in addition to what you desire. Use many key words, check job descriptions that you’re applying for and company websites.

I add a new key word to my LinkedIn profile every Sunday at 3:30 pm. My clients know that I call this process ‘changing my oil’. I get ‘under the hood’ of my LinkedIn profile check the Settings, add new keywords or publications, projects, interests and maybe a keyword to the Summary (Premium account holders see a new feature which shows you keywords that LinkedIn suggests you add). This keeps my profile fresh and coming up in searches. See the blog from William Arruda for additional summary tips.

TIP: Look good, research your keywords, and get a professional headshot. I recommend social media certificated photographer Jennifer Kelly,Jennnifer@kelicomm.com. (Below is example of a great headshot by Jennifer of John Goodrich, one of my ‘board of advisors’ and an amazing CEO and connector.)

5. BE CONNECTED – to the right kinds of people; you’re judged by the company you keep. When we build my clients’ connection strategy, I have my them think about their HUBS.

These are groups, associations, organizations, and meet-up groups – places that are common connection points where many of their influencers ‘hang out’. These include college or company employee alumni groups, industry associations, specialty groups, hobby clubs, or community volunteer organizations. I ask my clients to join, get known and volunteer in at least 5 hubs. These are the easiest places to begin networking because there is already a common connection point.

In addition, I ask my clients think about their TOP 11 people that have helped them in the past. Think about people that have helped you get that past job, introduced you to your spouse, helped you with your first house financing, etc. This could be former bosses, friends, colleagues, alumni, pastors, hair dressers, don’t forget accountants, lawyers, realtors as they are wonderful resources and connectors.

Then they make a list of the TOP 11 people that they have helped most. These are the people that we begin connecting with. This is a list of 22 people who have an average of 150 connections each – that’s 3,300 connections that can help.Statistics show that it’s the 2nd degree connection that will help you get that next job.

TIP: Ask 5 of your top people if they would be on your ‘board of advisors’. I have 5 and they are my ‘go to’ people to run by ideas, get advice and share new ideas. They are the people that refer 80% of all my business and I’m grateful to them. Join my Meaningful Connections group on LinkedIn and other appropriate groups where your HUBS and advisors are in.

6. BE CREDIBLE – what is the area of expertise that you want to be believed for? It’s important to stay top of mind, on LinkedIn, for your expertise. LinkedIn statistics show that your profile is 12X more likely to be clicked on if your photo shows up on the Home Page, Publishers area or in the Like, Comment or Share areas.

This is a part of the strategy that I teach my clients – how to create their meaningful marketing communications plan. We start by asking that question “what 3 things that they want to be known for or what 3 things would they blog about?”

Next we begin curating content, collecting and organizing information from Google Alerts, Newsle, blogs, experts, trade publications, Google+, Twitter, etc. Then we develop or create their point of view and begin to share it in the appropriate media. With the new Publishers pencil on LinkedIn this is much easier to do, however, only 1% of my clients do it, it is hard, I’ll be the first to admit. It took me 2 years to even post on LinkedIn.

TIP: Begin thinking about what 3 things that you desire to be known and believed for. Try the Publishers tool on LinkedIn (it’s the pencil in the Share an Update box next to your photo on the Home page).

7. BE KIND, HELPFUL and GRATEFUL – are you? As a ENFJ on the MBTI profile, I’m a giver profile. As a career coach, online brand strategist, LinkedIn trainer and consummate connector, I need a process to be available to help people. So I have created a variety of options to connect and network with people easily. Here are some of my meaningful connections practical ideas that I’ve started to ensure that I’m easy to connect with:

  • ‘Meaningful Connections Meet + Greet’ sessions – every M-F between 7:44-8:33 am central I am easy to reach via phone at 952.484.6854 to make a meaningful connection (no need schedule an appointment). This is usually a quick 10 minute touch base call to see how my ‘new friend’ and I can support each other.
  • Meaningful Connections LinkedIn Parties each Friday where I invite 5-7 clients and people who want to network to the local library, my office or the coffee shop where there is free internet. Everyone brings their computers and opens their LinkedIn network where I teach them how to do a Meaningful Connections Gold Mine Dive into our connections. We then make Introductions on the spot. Click here to read my blog for step by step details. Many of my clients have hosted their own LinkedIn Parties. Try it.
  • Introductions – I make 2 meaningful introductions from my LinkedIn network for each client that I meet with. The goal is to get 2 coffee meetings and then get 2 more, then 2 more. LinkedIn says that for every 300 views of a profile job seekers get a job offer. I translate these to 150 coffee meetings (since the face to face meetings speed up the process).
  • Group networking meetings, I attend 2x per month (I check out the MSP Business Journal and Star Tribune Business Sections for a listing of events and pick 2), I make it a habit to approach someone first with a genuine smile, a warm introduction (my first and last name, nametag on top right near my smile) a firm handshake and a sincere open ended question such as – “what brings you here today?” or “where are you coming from?” or “who do you hope to meet today?” or “what do you desire today?” – that one really throws them, as most people don’t know what they desire.
  • I start my day giving away HUGS, it’s my coffee time (see the blog) – every M-F between 7:00-7:15 am I’m on my LinkedIn. I have a set process where I provide 10 Endorsements, thank Endorsers, invite 4 new people to my network, Like, Comment, Share, reach back to people who have viewed my profile and post on the Home page and in Groups, Twitter, LinkedIn and Google+.
  • Each morning, I read the MSP Business Journal app, my Google Alerts and the Star Tribune and send an article to someone that I think would benefit. In addition, I will make meaningful connections to people that I think would profit by knowing each other.

TIP: Be the first to approach someone at an upcoming networking event. If you’re in a group or at a table have an open heart, a warm smile and an outreached hand. Invite that lone person to your table. You know how it feels.

I thank you for sharing your smile and for making meaningful connections. What can I be on the look-out for you today?

Be well, my new friends,

Anne

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Anne Pryor is a Universal Connector, LinkedIn Trainer, Certified Online Brand Specialist, Future Mapper and Co-founder of Meaningful Connections, a national leader in personal branding, online visibility using LinkedIn, and career and new world of work strategies. Meaningful Connections is a collaborative partner of theCollaborative Leadership Center at Sugar Lake Lodge, Grand Rapids, MN. See her other blog posts at: www.MeaningfulConnections.com

Tips to Use Pinterest for Job Search: A Great Resume Tool for Multiple Career Paths

Pinterest Resume for Multiple Career Paths

Pinterest Resume for Multiple Career Paths

I teach LinkedIn and Online Branding for Job Seekers for dislocated workers in Minneapolis and St. Paul, Minnesota.  I noticed that many of my ‘students’ are in their mid career and they have diverse interests.  They could go in a number of career directions.  When I introduced Pinterest as an online site 90% of the class lit up.  Both men and women appreciated the tool.

Pinterest is a great tool for ideation.  I’m encouraging my clients to create a ‘vision board’, a dream board where they can pin great ideas of jobs, environments, industries, products and services and companies that they would like to work for.

Below is an article adapted from a Brie Weiler Reynolds,  the content and social media manager at FlexJobs, the award-winning site for telecommuting and flexible job listings, and a former career advisor. At FlexJobs, Brie offers job seekers career and work-life balance advice through the FlexJobs Blog and social media, including Pinterest.

1. Pin Your Resume

Search for “my resume” on Pinterest, and you’ll get thousands of hits. Be more specific with your search terms (writer resume, business resume, graphic design resume) and more results pop up. Some are basic resumes with standard information and layout. Others are stylized pieces with creative layouts and catchy graphics. Most fall somewhere in between. The goal of pinning your resume to Pinterest is to get it shared throughout the site, so make sure it’s somewhat eye catching, error-free and compelling — wouldn’t you want those qualities in your resume, anyway?

2. Create a Resume Pinboard

 

Rather than pinning your full resume as one pin, create an entire board that represents the different parts of your resume with different pins. Pin pictures of the companies you’ve worked for, schools you’ve attended, places you’ve volunteered and hobbies you enjoy. Because Pinterest is a visual medium, it can provide a multi-dimensional representation of your two-dimensional resume. And, utilize the text box given with each pin to describe the image, how it relates to your career and why it’s important to you.

3. Follow Career Experts

If you’re in the market for some job search advice, Pinterest has a lot to offer. Sites like CareerBliss use pinboards to showcase inspiring ideas and items related to finding work that makes people happy. 

4. Link to Your Pinterest Resume

Once you’ve created a board for your resume, you need to tell people about it. Add it to your LinkedIn portfolio, your Facebook and Twitter profiles and your other online resumes.  Include it in your email signature, and add it to business or calling cards if you have them. The more places you show off your Pinterest page, the more it can help your job search. Just be sure to keep all your boards clean and professional because they’re all viewable by anyone, at any time.

5. Be Inspired in Your Job Search

If you’re not ready to pin your life’s work experience to Pinterest, use it for its original purpose — for personal inspiration. Job searching can be disappointing and stressful. If you’ve just come back from a particularly bad job interview, or sent 10 applications with no response, head to your Pinterest board for images that help you smile, laugh and cheer up. Hilarious comics, adorable kittens inspirational quotes — whatever boosts your mood is fair game for pinning.

If you’re a visual person who enjoys creative outlets, Pinterest can be a great way to let off some creative steam while winding your way through a job search. And it just might help you on your way.

Pinterest can be an effective resume. Share your stories.

Enjoy being creative, my friends,

Anne

 

How to Write a Meaningful LinkedIn Introduction at LinkedIn Networking Parties

New LinkedIn Party Make New Meaningful Connections

How to Write a LinkedIn Introduction at a LinkedIn Networking Party, by Anne Pryor

How many really meaningful networking meetings do you have in a month? Do you know how you can help others by sharing your connections? Do you get stumped on what to say in the connection email?

As a Executive Career Coach and LinkedIn Sales Trainer, I have coached more than 55,000 people to be found for great jobs and profitable business opportunities leveraging LinkedIn. I find that all people appreciate being around people and they genuinely want to help others but sometimes don’t know how.

As a former job seeker and sales person, I liked to be with others, brainstorm, share ideas and connections. I have noticed that job seekers are often isolated, especially my introverted clients. In addition, my sales rep clients sometimes get stumped on who to contact next.

Because I have am a connector and my 1st degree connections know me, like me and trust me they are willing to help me and my friends (or 2nd degree connections). In order to help each other more meaningful, quickly and honestly in more fun way, I have created LinkedIn Parties.

Here’s how a Meaningful Connections LinkedIn Party works:

  • Invite: 3 to 5 people who have different but complimentary networks to a ‘LinkedIn Party’.
  • Meet up: at a location with internet access for instance a coffee shop community room, local community center, library room, virtual office location, the outplacement companies meeting room. In Minneapolis / St. some of our grocery stores have free community rooms .
  • Bring: computers, cords, business cards, calendars, and an open mind
  • Check settings: everyone has their connections open (check the Settings to open connections to Everyone).
  • Prepare: a list of 10 people that they’d like to meet: titles, industries, companies, specialties, location, size of company, (their target audience).
  • Take turns: each person gets 10 minutes to ask the other members to search for his / her targeted people.
  • Search: friends all go to the “Advanced” area located next to the white Search box at the top of the profile page and type in the targeted keywords, titles, industries, companies, locations, etc. and click search.
  • Make meaningful connections: when the member finds a good connection they send a message, inside of LinkedIn, they include the friend and create a message such as:

“Hi Nate,

I would like to introduce you to my friend Max. He’s on my softball team and he is a seasoned product manager who is interested in your advice and expertise around medical device manufacturing as he is seeking to transition from Company X. I am including him on this message and will invite him to reach out to you.

Please let me know what I can be on the look-out for you. I know that when good people meet good things happen.

Be well, my thoughtful friend,

Anne

Nate Nelson: nate.nelson@abc.com

Max Smith: maxsmith2@abc.com”

TIP: I always include the email addresses for each person in the introduction email, I get an 80% response rate with this template.

  • Goals: each person is targeting 10 introductions. After the initial message is sent the person connected follows up and sets up a networking meeting or call.
  • Thank, celebrate + measure: finally, each person reports back to the group at the end of the week and share their successes.

LinkedIn Party Successes:

  • Financial planner client scheduled a LinkedIn Party with a CPA and an attorney friend and he secured 14 coffee meetings with good prospective clients. Two turned into clients. They are now scheduling monthly meetings and inviting additional members.
  • Executive job seeker client is scheduling Friday LinkedIn Parties at the outplacement center with different executives from industries he is targeting. This client set up 11 networking meetings in 2 hours.

Do you think that you can host a LinkedIn Party? Try it and let me know how it works.

We’re all connected!

Anne

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Anne Pryor is a LinkedIn Trainer, Certified Online Brand Specialist, Future Mapper and Co-founder of Meaningful Connections, a national leader in personal branding, online visibility using LinkedIn, and career and new world of work strategies. She is the creator of LinkedIn Parties.

New Future Mapping: Attain Your Goals + Make Others 120 Percent Happy

Anne Pryor Future Mapper, Meaningful Connections, Future Map process to manifest your goals

Anne Pryor Future Mapper, Meaningful Connections, Future Map process to manifest your goals

Are you interested in making a change and don’t know the first step to take? Have you heard of Future Mapping or Whole Mind Mapping?

I call it Happy Soul Mapping because this is the only model that I’ve ever experienced that can help to manifest my desire by wanting someone else to be 120% happy.

As a Certified Future Mapper, I am one of the first practitioners, outside of Japan, to be trained on this new technique co-created by Masanori Kanda and Dr. Paul Scheele. I have been using and practicing this technique for the past two years and I have found that it helps me and my clients to clarity, create an action plan and manifest goals more quickly and with ease and enjoyment.

WHAT IS FUTURE MAPPING?

Future Mapping is a proven process used with hundreds of individuals, businesses, associations and government organizations over the past four years in Japan.
This process is a brand new, altruistic way to create and uncover the desired future manifest goals by tapping into the subconscious mind and create an action plan that makes both the client and others happy.

HOW IT WORKS:

1) PREPARE:

Create desired goal: State what is wished for – what is the goal?
– I wish for a new job
– I wish for a new product
– I wish for a new process
– I wish for a new career
– I wish for a different point of view on any problem
– I wish to grow my business
– I wish for……. you fill in the blank

State desired timeline – 3 days, 3 weeks, 3 years, etc.

2) FUTURE:

Make someone 120% Happy: client thinks of someone or something that they desire to make 120% happy. This is a very unique feature of this Future Mapping / Whole Mind Mapping model. It is an altruistic approach to manifesting what is desired. Through positive quantum energy it raises the level of energy for the person / thing that you desire to make happy. Next, the client thinks of the gift that want to receive when the person / thing is 120% happy.

3) PRESENT:

The client shares the current state of the person / thing that they want to make happy.

4) STORY:

Subconscious takes over: client then draws a wavy line on the six quadrant graph, with their non-dominant hand starting from top right to bottom left (see the blue line in the image above).

Next, the client makes up a story. The client creates a made-up story about the person / thing that they want to make happy. The story should be as imaginary and wild as possible using many colorful and descriptive details. I use the abbreviated Pixar story model to coach my clients with their stories:

  • Once upon a time…
  • Every day…
  • One day…
  • Because of that…
  • Because of that…
  • Finally…

This story actually represents the subconscious mind, thoughts and desires.

5) ACTION:

Next, the client circles trigger words that catch their attention; focusing on the words that are most interesting to them. The words are then moved above the wavy line. I interpret the story and connect it to reality by association. This process is the hardest part to teach. The process includes tapping into intuition and asking probing questions through reality and association. An action plan is created. It’s really amazing to see what is uncovered through the subconscious by moving the words to the conscious and unearthing and understanding the meaning.

6) TITLE:

The client then titles the Future Map – thinking in terms of a movie – what would the film be called if it was a mega hit or a three word bumper sticker.

7) BABY STEP:

The client then commits to one small step that they will take.

To create a three-set action plan, I use the Lifting Up™ Leadership Model which I co-created with my dear friends and business partners, Kathleen Crandall and Risё Kasmirski. This seven step process includes Mindfulness, Awareness, Vulnerability, Intention, Lovitude®, Transformation and Transcendence. In addition, I overlay the my adapted Law of Attraction process to create the clear plan to manifest the client’s desired outcome: Ask, Claim, Allow, Accept, Believe, Feel, Visualize, Act, and Thank.

I use Future Mapping with my online branding, LinkedIn coaching clients, and when teaching and training Career Counselors, Life and Executive Coaches, Facilitators, and Learning and Development professionals to help them help their clients create their desired future.

WHO DO YOU WANT TO MAKE 120% HAPPY?

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Anne Pryor, MA., is a Certified Future Mapper, Online Visibility Strategist, Career Coach and LinkedIn Strategist. She is recognized as a Universal Connector, and she has trained more that 55,000 how to Look Good and Be Found Online and Make Meaningful Business Connections. Co-founder of Meaningful Connections she has studied quantum energy with Dr. Masaru Emoto, worked with Charles Schultz on the opening of Mall of America’s Knott’s Camp Snoopy and studied the work of Deepak Chopra and worked with Dr. Don Miguel Ruiz. She is the creator of Lovitude® a quantum energy jewelry line meaningful Love and Gratitude. Contact Anne Pryor at Anne@MeaningfulConnections.net.

Seven Job Search Trends Every Job Seeker Should Know

Job Search Trends

By Risë Kasmirski, Career Strategist, Meaningful Connections

If you are a job seeker pursuing your next opportunity you know things have changed dramatically in what you must now do to find and land your next job. Employers also face challenges with a dwindling pool of qualified candidates, a need to attract and retain good workers, and technology advances that require more sophisticated worker skills.

Seven major trends have evolved in the past few years that dramatically impact how individuals seek out jobs, and how employers find great candidates. Understanding these trends can greatly enhance your job search savvy and potentially shorten your search.

1 – BALANCED EMPLOYEE & ORGANIZATION NEEDS

Younger generations in the workplace have a strong desire for development and growth opportunities and for social learning. Employers desire workers who are ready to jump right in to the next assignment or project, allowing them to create a lean, skilled pool of workers.

The Opportunity: Know your skills, strengths and the learning and growth opportunities you desire. Then you can pursue employers with the right development opportunities. You will gain needed skills for future career growth, and your employer will benefit from an engaged worker with current skills.

2 – GLOBALIZATION AND SHIFTING WORKFORCE DEMOGRAPHICS

With five generations in the workplace by 2020, global work teams, and a projection of up to  50%  contingency workers (contractors, part-timers) by 2020, you are going to encounter great diversity in attitudes, ideas, and worker styles.

The opportunity: Be ready to describe your own style and the skills, knowledge, and personal attributes you can contribute to the organization. Prepare to discuss the ways in which you are flexible and adaptable.

 3 – INNOVATION – CREATE AND LEARN AS YOU GO

With virtually anything we want to learn available 24 / 7 through technology, we all need to be ready to learn and apply our learnings as needs arise. It is the resourceful worker that keeps current who is the most valuable to the organization.

The opportunity: Close the gap between the skills and knowledge you have today, and what is currently needed in your profession. Do you need to adapt to some new technology, understand industry trends, learn a new process or procedure? Be ready to share how you keep yourself current with your new employer.

 4 – PERSONAL BRANDING – REPUTATION MANAGEMENT

Everyone has a personal brand. You might think of it as how others experience knowing you, the impact you have on others, and your desired impact. Personal Brand Strategist Kathy Crandall defines it as “What Happens Because of You”™.  The massive attention to personal branding is aligned with the rapidly changing workplace where workers move from company to company and often shift careers several times throughout their lives.

The Opportunity: Understand your personal brand and communicate your brand consistently so that employers understand who you are in addition to the skills and knowledge you have.

 5 – SOCIAL MEDIA REVOLUTION

We live in a digital world that emerged so rapidly we all need to keep current on how technology affects job search. These days a computer will read your resume via electronic resume scanning long before a human will ever lay eyes on it. The messages you transmit via social media (Facebook, Linkedin, Twitter, etc) all tell a story about you.

The Opportunity: Update your resume for electronic scanning  including focus, keywords, branding). Google yourself and find out what others see when they search for you. Make sure the messages you are giving leave the impression you want your potential employer to see.

 6 – LINKEDIN – NUMBER ONE RECRUITING TOOL

There are 300+ million users on LinkedIn worldwide, and more than 96% of recruiters inside and outside of organizations use LinkedIn to find candidates. It is possible that LinkedIn may replace the need for resumes in the future.

The Opportunity: Develop a robust LinkedIn profile that brings your personal brand to life, highlights your skills and accomplishments, and helps others find you for job opportunities and meaningful connections. Understand the powerful job search tool that LinkedIn has proven to be and develop a LinkedIn job search strategy.

 CULTURAL MEGATRENDS ARE CHANGING OUR WORLD

As society becomes more socially and environmentally conscious, workers are more attracted to organizations that promote these ideals. The work practices and ethics of organizations have become increasingly transparent due to instant broadcast capability via the internet. Attitudes are shifting to more emphasis on personal values rather than what the workplace demands.

The Opportunity: Get in touch with what you value so that you can approach each opportunity through the lens of what is important to you and what type of contribution you would like to make.

Individuals who understand and embrace these workplace trends are more likely to feel focused and clear on what they are seeking, with consistent messages aligned throughout their resume, LinkedIn profile, and other social media avenues.