Written by Susan Lamphiear
When Al Gore lost the Presidential election, the fictional Stuart Smalley (character played by Al Franken on Saturday Night Live) insisted Gore, sitting in front of the mirror, say, “I’m good enough, I’m smart enough, and doggone it, people like me.” Stuart assumed, and rightly so, that Gore’s self-esteem may have taken a hit after his very public career setback.
Psychologists tell us that job loss is right up there with traumas including the death of a loved one or being involved in a car accident. So it’s not surprising that individuals in career transition after a job loss might need some extra care, some coaching, and ongoing words of encouragement. And ideally, some practical tips!
Kevin Dumcum, Employment Specialist, knows what it’s like to be suddenly unemployed. Until 2009, jobs always came to him. Since that job loss, Kevin discovered he really loves helping people who need assistance on their journey to employment. Kevin gave job searchers at Scottsdale Career Connectors some very practical advice to help them with their job search.
Kevin’s Ten Lessons to Get to Yes
Lesson 1: Recognize that job loss is traumatic. It’s not easy. It’s dramatic. It’s traumatic.
Lesson 2: Understand how companies think. Bottom line for the vast majority is profit. They don’t exist to give you a job.
Lesson 3: Control your own career path. During your journey, go after better opportunities whenever they arise. Remember that no company can guarantee your job and that you don’t owe them your soul.
Lesson 4: Take care of yourself. During your job search, you’re not on vacation! Establish a routine of getting up each morning and get dressed for the job search instead of watching reruns of Game of Thrones. But, make sure to do activities that rejuvenate you. For Kevin, hiking and reading the Bible became constants in his life.
Lesson 5: Decide what you really want. Assessments are available, some for free, that can help you take advantage of this time in your life. If you have not recently been doing work you really love, then this might be just the incentive to go after a career that better suits you.
- To tap into what you really like, Kevin highly recommends the book What Color is Your Parachute. Originally written in 1972, it’s been rewritten each year. But find any edition at the public library. Only the stats have changed, but the basic book is still the same. Section one includes exercises that lead you to your strengths. Section two tells you who would hire you to do the thing you love and are good at. Kevin proudly mentions he learned from his test results that he’s like Gandhi and Michelle Pfeiffer!
- Take the DISC Assessment free on the Career Connectors Website.
- The Myers Briggs Test is good. You can buy it and hire a coach to assist you in interpreting it. Or find the simulator online and take it for free.
Lesson 6: Try everything. Kevin means you should register on all the job boards (indeed.com, snagajob, jobbing.com, SimplyHired, and careerbuilder.com), use social media (but you must go out to networking events), attend job fairs, and take advantage of BestCompaniesAZ.
Lesson 8: Volunteer. Remember that there are always people who “need a hand up.” Plus, often you can volunteer in your area of expertise and gain experience while you job hunt. Volunteering shows employers that you haven’t forgotten how to show up. Consider Volunteermatch.org or Handsonphoenix.org for example. Or Career Connectors!
Lesson 9: Expect Rejection. After one too many rejections, Kevin decided he should try to network himself. He was spending more time volunteering in this area than job hunting. He asked himself: Who would hire me to do this…employment help. During this time he happily discovered Career Connectors, too.
Paraphrasing lines from one of the Rocky movies, Kevin reminded attendees, “Life is about how you can get hit and keep moving forward.”
Lesson 10: Celebrate small victories because all you need is ONE!
When Kevin flashes a picture from the popular movie Rocky on the screen, I’m already in Walter Mitty form reliving that final exhilarating scene from the original movie.
- To identify the best companies
- To promote the best
- To connect the best
Among many other activities, BestCompaniesAz holds quarterly events for job seekers with a focus on the military (January), women (April), diversity (August 27), and millennials (October).
Denise highly recommends Lee Vikre’s podcast on top interviewing tips. She also shares the following ways to get hired by the one of the best companies.
Top Companies Hiring Criteria (in order of importance)
- Culture Fit
- Interpersonal Skills
- Basic Job Skills
- Team Player
- Technical Skills
- Leadership Skills
- Prior experience in industry
- Educational Background (undergraduate)
- Professional Certification
- Prior experience outside industry
- Educational Background (advanced)
All four hiring companies represented at the Scottsdale meeting today have recently won top company awards.
Sayra Nevarez, Talent Acquisition Manager
USAA, a financial services organization founded by military officers, serves their members who include the U.S. military and their families. A Fortune 200 company, USAA takes their core values as seriously as they did in 1922 when the company was founded. Benefits include full benefits from the first day of hire, paid time off, wellness program and newly expanded state-of-the-art gym, and a facility on I-17 and Happy Valley Road that includes a health services clinic with doctor on site, onsite cafeteria, a child development center for children five and under and more. A number of jobs are open including customer service and sales in banking and insurance. To learn more about USAA or apply for a current open position, visit their website.
Heather Kitsko, Recruitment Business Partner
Orion Health is an award-winning leader in the health software industry with offices in the United States and Australia and headquartered in New Zealand. The company’s Scottsdale site is a 100% open office, all cubes, along with 12-13 conference rooms. Benefits of working at Orion Health include 100% medical and dental coverage for the employee and the whole family, paid holidays, sick days and discounts at Apple, AT & T and Verizon. Current openings include engineering and IT positions; more can be viewed online. For more information about the company and to apply, visit their website.
Jordyn Davis, Director of Talent Acquisition
ClearCall Solutions is a national leader in direct response marketing and sales, specializing in business-to-consumer acquisitions for Fortune 500 companies. The company has received awards including Best Company to Watch. As one of Chandler’s largest employers, they’ve been named one of Chandler’s top 100 companies, moving up the ranking from 67th last year to 46th in 2014. The company provides opportunities for advancement, leadership training, and recognition. Many job openings are available including sales representatives, IT business analyst, process analyst and more and can be viewed online. Visit their website to learn even more about the company and to apply.
Erika Villicana, Talent Sourcing Advisor
Charles Schwab, founded 41 years ago, continues its original mission to bring Wall Street to Main Street, committed to always see things through the client’s eyes. The company strives to provide financial services at low cost, using the consultation approach—really listening to clients. A Fortune 500 company, Charles Schwab is located in 45 states and 3 countries. The company has won 13 different awards in 2013 and 2014. Currently 100 jobs are available including Broker Training, Client Reporting Specialist and Relationship Specialist. For more information about the company and to apply, go to their website.
Dynamic Worldwide Training
Rodger Brubacher, Director of Continuing Education
Dynamic Worldwide Training is a certification-preparation school, licensed by the state, which offers training and certifications in Microsoft Office, Project Management Institute, and Medical Front Office, to name just a few. All classrooms offer state-of-the-art equipment, including dual monitors. Located in Tempe off the 60, the school offers several platforms for delivering instruction which include instructor-led, corporate on-site, virtual, or hybrid (a combination of methods). The school has a low student-to-teacher ratio and offers interview coaching. For more information on classes or available funding, visit their website.
Executive Director of Career Connectors Jessica Pierce closed the formal part of the meeting, reminding all new visitors about the free DISC assessment available to them. Breakout sessions include the opportunity to speak to hiring companies,receive free business portraits, and resume or LinkedIn coaching and other educational opportunities.
The next meeting of Career Connectors will be held Tuesday, May 26, 2015, at 9 AM in Gilbert, featuring keynote speaker Jim Paisley’s presentation: The Successful Interview.
Then on Wednesday, June 3, 2015, 9:00 AM, Phoenix keynote speaker Sandi Ashton will speak about DISCover Your Unique Value. Bring your printout of your DISC assessment!
The next Scottsdale meeting on Thursday, June 11, 2015, 9:00 AM features keynote speaker Michael Seaver speaking on Developing and Living Your Personal Brand.
For more information on upcoming topics, hiring companies and directions, click here.
Words of wisdom in a short video from Wayne Dyer re-emphasizes Kevin’s point about taking advantage of career transition to possibly reinvent yourself. It’s called How God tells you it’s time to change. Click here to view.