networking

[caption id="attachment_18423" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="Make those changes!"] [/caption] Transform your headline If you’re still allowing LinkedIn to auto-populate your Headline with your current job title you’re missing out. The most dynamic and impactful profiles use their Headline statement to communicate a powerful branding statement. With a 120-character limit you’ll need to choose your words wisely being sure to include a mix of relevant key words, impactful (and truthful!) adjectives and as much detail as you and about your niche if you have one. Customise your URL When you signed up for an account with LinkedIn you will have been allocated a generic URL containing your name followed by a series of numbers. You can boost your brand and search ranking results in LinkedIn by customising your URL. Keep in mind that you will need to have a minimum of five and a maximum of 20 characters. Learn more about the reasons why this is...

[caption id="attachment_18417" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="Making LinkedIn your own is easy"] [/caption] When you first set up your LinkedIn account, you are allocated a randomly selected URL consisting of your name followed by a bunch of numbers. This not only makes your URL long, it is difficult to share with others and looks unprofessional. Since most employers will review your LinkedIn profile as part of the hiring process, it’s vital you do everything you can to ensure your profile shines. Customising your LinkedIn profile URL is a simple and quick way to shows: You’re a professional Have good attention to detail You care about making a good impression Another reason why you should customise your LinkedIn profile is that it makes you easier to find which is particularly important if you have a common name. Customising your LinkedIn URL can make the difference between coming up in the first page of search results for your name rather...

[caption id="attachment_16442" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="Boost your career through networking"] [/caption] When I talk with my clients about how important networking is I’m often faced with a look of terror as they envisage themselves anxiously walking into a room full of strangers and awkwardly trying to network with them. I'm quick to reassure them that networking has changed a lot over the years and doesn't need to be the horrifying and daunting task they fear it will be. The biggest changes that have happened are the result of technological developments as well as the huge growth in range of networking opportunities. There really is something to suit everyone no matter how shy or lacking in confidence you might be. I prefer to look at networking as an opportunity to connect, learn and develop. Viewed in this way, networking becomes far less fearsome and much more fun. Now that’s got to be better than anxiousness,...

[caption id="attachment_18513" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="LinkedIn is a powerful networking tool"] [/caption] We've all done it. Logged in to LinkedIn, set up a profile, connected with some friends, old work colleagues maybe some family members and not returned for months or in some cases, years. The most common responses I get from people when I ask them if they're on LinkedIn are: "Oh yeah I am, I have a profile but it's not up to date and I haven't been on there for years." "I used to be on LinkedIn but I didn't see the point of it so I deleted my account." The whole premise behind LinkedIn is that it is a professional networking tool. But the thing is, if you are not using it to its full potential, it fails to be effective. That's no fault of the tool itself, but of the user of the tool - that's you and me. So what exactly...

[caption id="attachment_18523" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="Do you have an elevator pitch ready for when the opportunity arises?"] [/caption] What is an elevator pitch? The term elevator pitch evolved as a way to describe a 30 second spiel about who you are, what you have to offer and why someone should hire you. The premise is that if you were ever lucky enough to share a 30 second elevator ride with someone with the potential to hire you, you could confidently describe why they should. How do I create a good elevator pitch? By far the easiest and most effective way to create your own elevator pitch is to first identify your unique selling points. Try brainstorming on a sheet of paper or digitally if you prefer. Identify all those things that describe your skills, abilities, experience, interests, passions etc. Think about your accomplishments and include these in your pitch to really make you stand out. Have...

[caption id="attachment_18546" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="Tapping into the hidden job market is easy"] [/caption] You’ve probably heard that around 80% of the jobs that are filled at any given time have been filled via the hidden job market. So what exactly is the hidden job market? As you will notice from the following graphic, the hidden job market is simply those jobs that are not advertised. There was a time when the majority of available jobs were advertised through newspaper employment classifieds, employment centre job boards and via recruitment agencies. In recent years however, there’s been a move away from these methods for a number of reasons including: a desire to reduce recruitment costs a tighter job market technological advances   Many employers find they no longer need to advertise for new staff as they are continually inundated with prospective employees using the direct approach. Most direct approaches are received by email making it easier than ever to quickly vet...

[caption id="attachment_16775" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="Thinking of changing career?"] [/caption] Changing jobs is challenging enough but changing to a whole new career can be overwhelming.  One of the biggest hurdles faced by career changers is how to make a smooth and successful transition to their new career.  To help, we’ve put together this step-by-step guide to make the transition to your new career an easier one. Research A vital first step in changing careers is to research your new career. Speak to people in the industry to gain a realistic insight in to the culture, conditions, opportunities and challenges. As part of your research you should aim to identify any skills gaps, transferable skills and any qualifications or certifications required for your new career. Find out what others in your chosen new career have done for example, what are their backgrounds? What was their progression route? What qualifications do they have? Develop a plan A good...

[caption id="attachment_18628" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="Even in tough times you can advance your career"] [/caption] You might think tough economic times mean that any plans for advancing your career are on hold. In fact, the current economic climate provides an ideal opportunity for you to take advantage of the situation. Here are some ideas to help you advance your career: Gain new skills We have all heard the countless stories about dwindling numbers of workers and the increased workloads within organisations. If you find yourself in this situation, rather than seeing it as an overwhelming threat, try looking at the opportunities the situation presents. Taking on extra duties could enable you to develop new skills which will make you more marketable or provide leverage to ask for a pay rise and higher status. Grasp any opportunities that arise to job shadow or receive on-the-job training and mentoring from other staff members. Be on the lookout...

[caption id="attachment_18641" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="Volunteer to help your career"] [/caption] It's Volunteer's Week and I thought now would be the perfect time to discuss the benefits of volunteering and how it can boost your career. There are so many advantages to volunteering but here are the main ones: Gain work experience It’s a fact that employers look more favourably upon candidates with a combination of qualifications and experience than they do on those with qualifications alone. One of the most common questions I'm asked by graduates and career changers is how to gain practical work experience when no one is prepared to give you a go? Short of finding an entry-level role or internship, volunteering is one of the best ways to gain practical work skills and experience. Professional development As a volunteer, it's likely you'll gain access to professional development opportunities since many hosts provide free training for volunteers. This could take the form...

[caption id="attachment_18658" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="Become an employed graduate"] [/caption] Although the latest economic reports suggest the grip of the recession has been ever-so-lightly loosened, the economy remains slow continuing its impact on the job market. Graduates are finding the job opportunities they expected to be waiting for them after years of study are not as plentiful as they had hoped. A dwindling number of graduate positions and large numbers of emerging students make for a frustrating combination. The lucky ones make industry connections alongside their studies moving into roles straight from university or college. Mature graduates with little or no experience in their new field of qualification often find it difficult to secure an entry level position, with some reporting they have had to take extended periods of unpaid work in an effort to gain relevant work experience. Not an ideal situation if you have a family to support, a mortgage and...