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What’s all the Hype about Pinterest?

Last year, it was Google+, now it’s Pinterest! Social media is exploding at an alarming pace that it’s becoming quite difficult to keep up. At the same time, as a career coach, I have to know what tools are available so I can guide my job-seeking/career transition clients accordingly.

With that, and as an early adapter, I jumped on the Pinterest bandwagon and requested an invitation. A couple days later my request was granted and I created an account, curated my websites, then decided to explore the tool in more depth. It has visual appeal, for sure, is great for graphic content and creative job seekers could find ways to build their resumes. As a matter of fact, I found one resume I thought was unique and pinned it to my board.  So, since my foray into the tool two weeks ago, here’s what I found:

  • It is a virtual Pinboard that “lets you organize and share all the beautiful things you find on the web. People use pinboards to plan their weddings, decorate their homes, and organize their favorite recipes”, and may I dare say, create somewhat of a resume.
  • It drives more referral traffic than Google Plus, LinkedIn and YouTube combined. Shareaolic Report. If it drives more traffic than LinkedIn, should job seekers be playing in that space?
  • Techcrunch reported that it had 11.7 million unique visitors, faster than any other standalone in history. It was also named by Techcrunch as the fastest startup in 2011. How many of those visitors were recruiters and hiring managers?
  • Their goal is to “connect everyone in the world through the ‘things’ they find interesting.” A bold goal!

In a couple of days I will be speaking to a group of communications, advertising and marketing professionals, and with such a creative bunch, you bet Pinterest will be a part of the discussion!

Can job seekers use this tool to maximize their job search? What are your thoughts?

By the way, if you wish to come along for the ride, you can click here to follow me on Pinterest.

 

Related posts: Can Pinterest Help Your Job Search?.

10 Résumé Buzzwords to Avoid in 2012

Hear ye, Hear ye! This is hot off the Press! LinkedIn has just released its list of most overused professional buzzwords for 2011. They did this after analyzing 135 million professional profiles on their website. Some of these same words were on the list in 2010, and have resurfaced. Check your résumé or LinkedIn profile to see if you are guilty of using any or all of these:

1.      Creative

2.      Organizational

3.      Effective

4.      Extensive experience

5.      Track record

6.      Motivated

7.      Innovative

8.      Problem solving

9.      Communication skills

10.    Dynamic

As much as we might want to eliminate or reduce the use of these words and phrases, employers tend to lag behind with the use of clichés. Their job postings still include many of these words. Their applicant tracking system still contains these words and phrases, yet if the words are not incorporated in a candidate’s résumé, the résumé does not stand much of a chance of being seen by the human eye.

One way to overcome or minimize the use of these words is to give examples or tell stories of:

  • how you were creative
  • what problems you solved
  • what really got you motivated, and
  • how many years of experience you have.

By using this method, the hiring manager or decision-maker can easily see your potential value.

As with everything else, your decision to include or exclude these words requires a delicate balance. The fact is, there are going to be times when using the ‘word or phrase’ is your only option!

 

Source: LinkedIn’s Most Overused Buzzwords for 2011

 

3 Basic Tips to Boost Your LinkedIn IQ

Are you just getting started on LinkedIn? Are you someone with a LinkedIn account but an incomplete profile? Set aside some time today to work on your LinkedIn profile. “Why?”, you ask. LinkedIn has been described as your “Résumé on Steroids”. This means your profile is available online 24 hours per day, 7 days per week, 365 days per year. In addition, more than 85 percent of hiring managers use it to find candidates. With the potential for so much exposure, you should familiarize yourself with some LinkedIn basics.

  • First, replace the blank avatar in your profile with a professional headshot. People are more inclined to accept an invitation when they can see a face. If, for some reason, you don’t want to use a photograph, use an image that is closely aligned with your profession or your personality.
  • Second, customize your LinkedIn invitation. Do not use the generic, “I’d like to add you to my professional network” invitation that LinkedIn offers. Create a short personal message such as “I was reviewing my professional network on LinkedIn and realize you are not yet on my list. Please accept my invitation to connect.”
  • Third, create a Personal LinkedIn URL. When you first created your profile, LinkedIn automatically assigned you a profile URL that included letters and numbers. Change this URL to include your name. For e.g., my LinkedIn URL is www.linkedin.com/in/daisywright.

According to LinkedIn, members with complete profiles are 40 times more likely to receive career opportunities. Put yourself in a position for new career opportunities. Begin working on your LinkedIn profile, and have a great Monday.

Google+…What is This?

Two weeks ago I had the pleasure of speaking with 30+ Internationally Trained Engineers at Humber College about marketing themselves to employers. After I had touched briefly on the Big 3 social networking platforms – LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook – I introduced Google+. “Google what?” they asked. If you haven’t heard of it yet, Google+ is the new kid on the social networking block that arrived on the scene in June. Think of it as a blend of LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter.

Now, you may already be suffering from social media fatigue and do not want to hear about another one. However, Google+ is worth exploring. Why? Recruiters and hiring managers are there. Some are already using the Hangout feature to conduct interviews and meetings. Career coaches, resume writers, HR and public relations professionals, and marketing and communication experts are using this same feature to network with each other.

If you are an early adopter, you have a chance to follow these professionals and get to know who the other players in their circles are, who they are connected to and who are connected to them. You will have an opportunity to network with other users who, as they get to know you, may be able to help you in your job search or career transition. Remember, networking is key!

Speaking of early adopters, blogger/author/speaker, Chris Brogan is writing a book on Google+. Imagine that, and the platform is not yet 3 months old. As a job seeker or career changer, you need to be acquainted with all these social networking tools, and they are basically free. Explore and see which one aligns best with your interest and goals, then dive in. As the saying goes, “The early bird catches the worm.” You need to be leading the pack ahead of your competitors.

Years ago when blogs weren’t that fashionable, I suggested to a colleague that she creates a blog to showcase her expertise and distinguish herself as a communications specialist. Of course, it was the intent that someone would notice her extraordinary writing capabilities and contact her. She told me that blogging was a fad that would soon wane! Well, the would-be fad is now main stream.

Don’t get left behind. You already know how difficult it is to find job opportunities through traditional means. The use of social media in your job search is critical. Whether or not you jump on the Google+ bandwagon, you owe it to yourself to find out what it’s all about. Here  is a link that explains the basics of Google+:  Introduction to Google+. Once you have reviewed it, post a comment to tell me your thoughts.

At the moment, you can only join Google+ by invitation, and I have been allotted 150 invitations.  If you would like to test-drive it, send me an email with ‘Google+’ in the subject line and I will send you an invitation. View my profile-in-the-making at http://gplus.to/careertips2go. Remember, like Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn, Google+ is F.R.E.E.

LinkedIn & Twitter = Online Versions of a Rotary or Golf Club?

“Think of LinkedIn or Twitter as online versions of a Rotary Club or Golf Club”. So says a member of Toastmasters, and I agree!

According to the latest issue of Toastmaster, “Web 2.0 isn’t just for teenagers using Facebook or MySpace anymore….a growing number of businesspeople, including many Toastmasters, are using these new applications to run their small businesses more efficiently, network with peers, tack customer perception of their products or services online and promote their organization.”

Tomorrow am deliver a “Coaching-the-Coach” presentation to employment counsellors at a conference. Using Social Media (or Web 2.0 technology) as a job search tool will definitely be a big part of my delivery.

Boost Your Visibility & Profits With Web 2.0 Technology

The caption of a recent article written by Janis Foord Kirk, career columnist for the Toronto Star said, “Entrepreneurs need coaching”! As I read the article I couldn’t help but see the commonalities between an entrepreneur and a jobseeker. Both have attributes and competencies that their ‘clients’ need, both are facing challenges in these turbulent economic times, and both need strategies on how to brand themselves, stand out and stay competitive.

As a departure from the norm when I would focus on jobseekers, I am dedicating this article to CEO’s (Chief Entrepreneurial Officers), otherwise known as small business owners. Some of these people are also feeling the residual effects of downsizing and layoffs just like GM, Chrysler and Ford. I will discuss three simple strategies that small business owners can implement to increase their visibility and ultimately their profits.

One of the first strategies a CEO could implement is the tried and trusted act of networking. Networking – whether it’s face-to-face or online – is a crucial skill for entrepreneurs, and should be practised regularly. This is a good time to get out of your comfort zone and connect with people you hardly know, including your competitors. Many business relationships and alliances have been forged between people who once considered themselves competitors.

The second strategy is to become familiar with social media or Web 2.0 technology such as LinkedIn, Twitter, VisualCV and MuchMor, among a long list of others. A former spokesperson for Facebook said, “People are going beyond their face-to-face network and reaching toward that next layer of people that could play a role their success…but these people may be hard to reach through traditional media”. The rise in the use of social media is not limited by geography and has allowed people to connect with each other wherever and whenever they wish. These forums do not replace face-to-face communication, but add another dimension to networking and increased visibility. Below are several popular social media resources you may find beneficial to you and your business:

LinkedIn. This is “an online network with more than 30 million experienced professionals from around the world, representing 150 industries”, according to its website. Its main aim is to help professionals forge and maintain business connections, but more and more business owners are making valuable connections through LinkedIn.

Twitter. The new kid-on-the-block, when compared to LinkedIn, but it is growing at an alarming pace. What started out as a service for friends, family, and co–workers to communicate and stay connected through the exchange of quick, frequent answers to one simple question: What are you doing, has blossomed into one of the most popular online communities. Not only are business relationships being developed through this forum, but it provides fertile soil for learning and keeping up with industry trends. One of the great things about Twitter is that one has only 140 characters to get one’s point across.

VisualCV. You may not have a website and probably you don’t need one, but you do need an online presence. If you want to put together an online bio or portfolio, then you will want to take at a look at VisualCV. It combines elements of a traditional resume with additional features like videos, photos, and a portfolio with samples of one’s work. Because it’s web-based, it is very easy to be incorporated into an email and send to prospects.

Blog Talk Radio. Are you aware you can host your own radio show to keep in touch with your clients or reach a wider audience? There are numerous online radio stations available, but you can check mine out at www.blogtalkradio.com/CareerCoach.

Maestro Conference. The third strategy is specifically for business owners who conduct teleconferences on a regular basis. Do you host teleconferences or teleseminars? How would you like to be able to have breakout sessions during one of your teleconferences? Literally having several discussion groups going on simultaneously and you, as host, having the capability to monitor and moderate these groups. Think Maestro Conference. Maestro Conference allows you to create a dynamic environment combining the convenience of traditional conference calls, with the interactivity of a live workshop. Check them out at http://www.thewrightcareer.com/links.htm.

MuchMor Business Network. Muchmor is a dynamic social media organization that powerfully combines online business & social networking with real life events & workshops. The vision of Muchmor Media is to provide our clients with a quality & knowledgeable service that enables their businesses to grow & prosper.

“Small is the new big. Sustainable is the new growth. Trust is the new competitive advantage”, states one company’s tagline. What about you? As Chief Entrepreneurial Officer of your business, are you ready to explore the benefits of social media? If you would like additional information or need help in creating your profiles for any of the above media, call us at (905) 840-7039 or send an email to daisy@thewrightcareer.com.

Links as referenced in the article:

LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/in/careercoach4u

Follow me on Twitter:
http://www.twitter.com/daisywright

VisualCV:
http://www.visualcv.com/daisywright

Radio: http://www.blogtalkradio.com/CareerCoach

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More Tips on Using Twitter in Your Job Search

Twitter is the one of the coolest job search tools. Click on the link to find valuable tips on how to use this fascinating tool in your job search.

Some topics include:

* How to get the most out of your page
* How to evaluate a recruiter on Twitter
* Job search tools
* Specific job search accounts

Follow me on Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/daisywright

Daisy Wright to Speak at Sheridan College

Attend this 1.5 hour presentation at Sheridan College in Brampton tomorrow, January 20, at 6 pm. The presentation will include:

**How to Bridge the “No Canadian Experience” Gap

**Creating a Road Map to SUCCESS

**Elements of Effective Communication (and it has nothing to do with Words)

**The 3 R’s of an Effective Job Search

**Using Social Media as a Networking Tool

Women’s Internet Marketing Summit

You are invited to the Women’s Internet Marketing Summit
“Sharing a Wealth of Expertise to Accelerate Your Success!” A part of the NEW “Women’s Success Series™”

Want to Take Your Business to New Heights?

Want to Network from the comfort of Your Home, Office or Car?

Expand your Business While you Expand your Mind!

Join us on Saturday October 28th for this Transforming Event!

This is YOUR chance to learn how Internet Marketers WIN on the WEB.

http://www.wecai.org/wim_summit.htm

One Tip Before Posting Your Resume Online

The following tip was taken from Kent Jacobson’s article on www.syndicatedwriters.com:

Make sure the last page of your résumé includes an additional 5 to 10 key words; hide the viewable color by changing the text to white (so these are not printed out). Why? The search engine spiders will find these key words, but they will not show up the print copy.

Be aware that only 20% of people actually find a job via the Internet. Guess how the other 80% got their job? Through personal and professional networking!

Kent Jacobson
www.shortcut2success.com