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Smart Tips for Getting Professional Training in Salt Lake City

Smart Tips for Getting Professional Training in Salt Lake City

Enhance Your Professional Resume with these Great Tips

Professionals and executives working in the Salt Lake City metro area might be concerned about how to increase their professional upward mobility in a bad economy. Advanced job opportunities seem to be scarce. Your current opportunity for immediate promotion might seem bleak. You can improve your own chances for promotion within your company or for a new job in a different company with the following tips.

Custom Fit Training from Salt Lake City Community College Offers Skills Development at a Discount

The Custom Fit Training program from SLCC’s Miller Business Resource Center offers training to suit your Utah business. Utilizing Utah state funds, Custom Fit Training will work with your company to create and provide skills enhancement that address your company’s specific needs. Although you have to work within specific parameters to apply for program acceptance, the program will pay for a significant portion of your training fees. Says the Salt Lake Community College Custom Fit Training web site, “Custom Fit Training is one of Corporate Solutions most flexible, customized training programs designed to provide Utah businesses with a well-trained workforce. Utilizing Utah state funds, Custom Fit Training is designed to stimulate economic development and facilitate the creation of new jobs in our state.” Clearly, this type of education can improve your technical knowledge, because you can obtain almost any type of training or certification with the program. Additionally, you will have the cache of adding a local brand name to your professional resume that Salt Lake City companies will easily recognize and appreciate.

Attend a Local Utah College

There are so many local colleges and continuing education programs in Salt Lake City and in Utah that provide additional training that you might need to get that promotion. Although many colleges in the Salt Lake Valley require matriculation toward a degree, so many will allow you to enroll as a nonmatriculated student. If you are lucky, you might even be allowed to audit a class—you’ll get to sit in the lectures for free or at a reduced fee, and you can read any materials the teacher assigns, but you probably won’t be able to participate in classroom discussions.

Capitalize on Your Existing Experience in Your Professional Resume

Either way, the new coursework becomes a great addition to your professional resume.

  • If you happen to be unemployed currently, consider using this training as an addition to your professional work experience, in a line item entitled “Educational Sabbatical.”
  •  If you do not have a college degree, you can include a new line in your professional resume that indicates you are now in the process of seeking an associate of arts, associate of science, Bachelor of Arts, or Bachelor of Science. Including a line that you are in the process of seeking a degree prevents the online application systems from automatically rejecting your professional resume, if a degree is a requirement for the promotion you’re seeking.
  • If you are currently employed and want to get a new job in a different company, any updated training or coursework you might have will enhance your resume in the eyes of your future employer.
  • If you are seeking a promotion within your current company, enhanced education on your professional resume indicates to a hiring manager that you are seeking to prove you can handle greater responsibility.

Resume Writing for Entrepreneurs and Business Owners

Resume Writing for Entrepreneurs and Business Owners

Getting Back into the Corporate World

In a tough economy, when small businesses thrive, it’s due to their team strategy, marketing, and more–including their executive leadership. These entrepreneurs are the power on which our successful economy rests. If you’re an entrepreneur who has chosen to exit your small business, you need to know how your skills and assets can impress a hiring manager.

You–a current or former business owner–need to convince a hiring manager that

  • You’re an executive ready to lead the charge to a company’s profitability.
  • You’re a professional who is able to follow the beat of someone else’s drum–maybe for the first time in your professional career.

No matter whether you’re a mid-career professional or a true executive, you need to prove:

  • You are ready to give up the powerful independent life
  • You’re ready to throw your lot in with the rest of the professional world
  • You’re ready to work with others on teams
  • You’re ready to take direction from someone who might not have the same perspective—or experience—as you.

Need to create a powerful career-change strategy? Identify the steps you need to follow to be successful here.

The Answer

You need an entrepreneur resume. Resumes for entrepreneurs are substantively different from standard business resumes.

If you’re an entrepreneur, you’re probably smart, driven, customer-oriented, and proud of your ability to do whatever it is your company does. Educationally speaking, you might have an MBA or you might have just made it through high school. You might have been working for your own enterprise for 5 months, 5 years, or 25 years. In any case, you’re thinking it’s times to leave the business in someone else’s hands, or to close it altogether.

Probably, you have not written a resume before, because your company was flying high, and you loved the responsibility, pressure, and elation of success. But if you’re ready to take the plunge, your entrepreneur resume has to show some serious innovation and expertise. An expert entrepreneur such as yourself needs to have a resume that blows the competition away, competing with all other comers on their terms–which might be substantially different from the ones that have driven your success in the past.

5 Resume Techniques for Entrepreneurs Returning to the Corporate World

1. Highlight Your Accomplishments

Accomplishments in a resume for entrepreneurs are critical.  By showing what you have accomplished in the past on your entrepreneur resume, you will show a hiring manager that you can accomplish the same goals for his or her company. For example, demonstrate that you’re the right one for the job due to your incredible track record of high sales, decreased turnover, technical expertise, or human resources talent.

2. Talk about Teamwork

First, emphasize any team projects you’ve participated in within your business, whether inside your company with subordinates, with other industry players, or with clients. Ensure that your prospective hiring manager knows you’re a team player and you aren’t afraid to collaborate.

3. Show Increasing Levels of Responsibility

Even within your own organization, you probably started with smaller projects and worked your way to bigger ones. Great challenge-action-response CAR statements will show how you wrangled the most success from sticky situations that will resemble the kinds of problems hiring managers are desperate to solve.

4. Write for Your Audience

Demonstrate your growth with strong action words and as many quantitative and qualitative assessments as you can. Pick powerful language; don’t use boring text that doesn’t grab attention.

Don’t forget a great cover letter and professional biography for business owners. Your cover letter is the introduction to your resume. It has to be polished and professional. Don’t know how to begin? Call me at 801-810-JOBS.

5. Hire a Professional Resume Writing Service

When you were out pounding the pavement as the leader of your own company, you made sure that your clients knew they were hiring an expert. If you’re stuck about what to say in your resume, you, too, can hire an expert to help you get a job fast. A professional resume writer can help you with your professional resume. If you need an executive resume writing service, she can help you with that as well. She’ll have expert-validated knowledge and skill, and she’ll get you the resume that will get you the interview you need to jump start your new career.

The Free Job Search: Find a Job Quickly Without Spending a Lot of Cash

The Free Job Search: Find a Job Quickly Without Spending a Lot of Cash

I am constantly amazed at how much people are willing to spend on what they think will help them get a job. They assume, wrongly, that they can find a job more quickly if they throw money at the problem. Let’s set up a job search budget that you can use to help you find a job quickly without overspending your shoestring budget.

Whether it’s because of the economy or because of individual job seekers’ situations, I hear it all the time: I don’t have the money to spend on my job search. Let’s break down the costs of your job search and help you define your boundaries to get you to your new job quickly.

No Money §
photo credit: Alina Sofia

Essentials for a Free Job Search

  1. Free use of a computer. If you are not searching for jobs online and using e-mail intelligently, you are putting yourself out of the game. Luckily, most public libraries have computers that are free for the public to use. Printing on their printers costs very little, perhaps $.10 to $.25 per page. They often have open source software, which you can use to save your documents in Microsoft Word, the document format of choice.
  2. Free email. You don’t need to pay a service to get great e-mail. Sign up for a professional email account with Yahoo!, Gmail, or Hotmail. You can access this account from any computer connected to the Internet.
  3. Free job clubs. Most cities these days have job clubs that are run by experts in job search. These might meet monthly or more frequently, and they might be run in a church, synagogue, public library or community center. They all give their participants a chance to learn new strategies about job searching and opportunities for networking.
  4. Free resume assistance. You can get free resume assistance in person from your local Workforce Services in addition to the myriad other services they provide. If you need samples of excellent resumes that got people the interviews they want, then sign up here http://eepurl.com/cGxMo for my free e-book on resumes and cover letters that got the interviews.
  5. Your local Department of Workforce Services. Get free advice on job search, access to job opportunities in the public and private sector, and free assistance with job search tools.
  6. Your personal network. Reach out to 10 people every day; ask them about what they do in an informational interview. Ask for recommendations from them for additional people to connect with via LinkedIn or on the phone.
  7. If you’re a relatively recent graduate, your professors. Many academics have close ties with industry. See about getting in on a research project or securing a critical introduction from a trusted academic mentor.

Are Free Professional Resume Writing Services Worth It?

As for free professional resume writing services? Don’t expect much from them. Only hire an expert to do the complex work of crafting your personal and professional brand in a resume. In other words, don’t waste your money on the cheap resumes that don’t work. Ask for credentials, such as the Certified Advanced Resume Writer credential, which I have (in addition to an MBA and Master of Arts in publishing). Successful professional resume writing is not cheap, and it’s not free. But it is likely cheaper in the long run than it will cost you day by day to delay your deserved success.

What free job search tools do you recommend to job seekers?

Looking for Work Is Now Your Full-Time Job

Would You Hire Yourself during Your Job Search: Looking for Work Is Now Your Full-Time Job

If you’re unemployed, looking for work should be your full-time job. Although your effort to look for work in this touch economy isn’t something you can put on a resume, your job search has to be your main focus, and that means up to 40 hours per week.

Does a 40-hour weekly investment seem too much? Think about it this way. If you worked for a company and didn’t spend every valuable moment doing something profitable and productive, you’d get yourself fired. If, in a perfect world, you could hire someone else to find you a job, and that person failed, you would fire him/her as well for failure to perform. Thus, if you’re not looking for work some standard number of hours every work week in effort to find yourself a job, you should probably fire that persona and take on a new, successful job search strategy.

If You Worked only 22 Minutes per Day, You’d Be Fired

tictac
Creative Commons License photo credit: pj_vanf

A recent white paper published by the National Bureau of Economic Research* reported on what the unemployed generally do instead of looking for work. It turns out people sleep more, work on their houses more, and attend to their medical care. But they don’t spend a great deal of time looking for work. Surprisingly, they spend only 1% of their time in job search mode. If a typical work week is about 37 hours (down about 9% over the last couple of years), this means that the average unemployed person is spending 22 minutes per day looking for work.

Your Job Search Plan of Attack

Every hour, every minute you spend on some other activity during work time is unrecoverable time lost that you could be using productively as you are looking for work. Use this list to jump-start your new daily grind:

  • Join a Job Club. There are in-person job clubs, virtual job clubs, formal and informal job clubs—and all are designed to help you as you are looking for work. If you live in the Salt Lake City area, come to the Salt Lake City Job Club—it’s free. Call me at 801-810-JOBS to participate.
  • Get training. You’ve got the time, so go take a class in something you can talk about in your next interview. It also fills that gap on the resume since your last position while you are looking for work.
  • Shadow someone in a new industry or position for a day. Learn what they do. Ask questions. Pay attention. This might be your job target.
  • Network with people you know—and people you don’t know. Expand your circle. Become visible.
  • Apply intelligently for jobs. Your resume is one of the keys to your success. Tweak it for choice positions. Don’t know how? Don’t have a killer resume? Not getting those interviews? Call me at 801-810-JOBS.

Don’t just “do” something. Everything you do in your job search should have a purpose. If you don’t have a strategy and have no idea what the best use of your time is while you are looking for work, call me.

What do you while you are looking for work? Comments welcome.

* “Time Use During Recessions,” NBER, July 2011, http://www.nber.org/papers/w17259.pdf.

Market Your Professional Branding Message

Your personal branding is a statement of the why and how you are an expert in whatever it is that you do. Just like McDonald’s is known for burgers and fries, people should remember you for one or two areas of expertise. If you think you’re an expert in 5 or 10 things, you’re probably not sure what direction your career should take, and you’re certainly not ready to start applying for positions.

These one or two skill sets or areas of proficiency should pervade three components of your career documentation. With a unified, clear marketing message, you will make the connections you need with your next hiring manager. Market your resume, cover letter, and LinkedIn profile with your unique selling proposition, and you’ll present yourself as clear, focused, and ready to solve a hiring manager’s pain, starting on Monday.

Target your personal brand

Focus your personal brandYour value makes you special.

Your resume

Say who you are and what you do in your headline. Rather than title your resume with Resume or Summary of Qualifications, use strong, interesting language that will pique the interest of a hiring manager as well as provide excellent fodder for a digital applicant tracking system. For example, if you’re a project manager who only manages construction of airport parking garages, say so. As a selling strategy, it sure beats Objective.

Once you have distilled this headline, elaborate on this headline in your professional profile. This paragraph, rather than being a literal summary of your experience, should demonstrate the benefits of hiring you. Think of it as an expanded headline.

Your cover letter

If your hiring manager is not a fan of cover letters, convince her otherwise with a killer cover letter that conveys something really special about the value you deliver—your unique skill set and expertise. Rather than rehash your resume, explain how when the doors open on Monday morning, you’ll have a list of implementable solutions founded on significant expertise.

In summary, no matter who you are, no matter what industry or what level of expertise, you have something special to offer your next hiring manager. When you have refined what makes you great, make sure that your message flows through every marketing document you send.

Your LinkedIn profile

Poorly engaged LinkedIn profiles look like copied-and-pasted resumes. Instead, capture your audience’s attention with a well-written headline (different from, less formal than the one on your resume; see above). Infuse it with your personality. Make it clever. Invite people to read more. For example, a resume’s “Project manager for Airport Parking Construction” becomes LinkedIn’s “Project Manager Overseeing Parking Lot Construction: I built it, they came, and they flew away.”

Related Links

Indispensability + Findability = Employability

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What Do You Need in a Job Search Emergency?

Amy L. Adler is the president and founder of Inscribe / Express, a resume and career documentation company focusing on the health care and information technology industries. She prepares resumes, cover letters, post-interview thank you letters, executive profiles, and other critical career documents on behalf of clients at all levels of employment. Credentialed as a Certified Advanced Resume Writer, Amy has earned a Master of Business Administration in Information Technology and Strategic Management as well as a Master of Arts in Publishing. Contact Amy at (801) 810-JOBS or .

Resume Color: When in Doubt, Leave It Out

The Question of Resume Color

Time and again I get questions about using color in a resume design. The questions read something like this:

  • Should I use color in a resume?
  • Which resume color will make mine stand out?
  • Do recruiters and hiring managers love or hate resume color?

Some say color is the kiss of death in a resume. Some love it. I say “it depends.”

Before you even think about which shade of green to use in your resume, make sure your resume content is the best it can be. Don’t even think about designing your resume—color or no color—until you’ve written stellar content that highlights your best accomplishments. The design is window dressing for the content of your resume, not the other way around.

multicolored hands

Colors in Your Resume: Help or Hurt?

When you are sure that your resume content markets you in the best way possible, then start to think about the way you want to present it. You can make excellent resume content highly visible with careful use of color. Some good ways to incorporate color include:

  • Using a subtle color shade to call out a text box containing important resume skills.
  • Incorporating rules (lines all the way across your resume page) in a color that highlights section headings in your resume.
  • Drawing attention to your bullet points with a clever use of color in the bullet design.

It should go without saying that the color of the body text in your resume should be black. Only black.

Color in a Resume Depends on What You Want to Telegraph to Your Future Employer

If you are not completely sure that using color in a resume will help you, don’t use any color at all. You definitely won’t go wrong by being ultraconservative in your resume design approach.

For example, if you work in a very conservative industry, such as finance or banking, you’re not likely to win over a hiring manager who wants someone conservative like her. You wouldn’t appear at your interview wearing bright green socks with your navy pinstriped suit, so don’t be flagrantly untraditional in your resume, either.

On the other hand, if you’re a graphic designer, and you want to show off your skills in a concrete way, take advantage of your skills and add a cleverly designed element to your resume. Use color in a way that shows your flair, cleverness, and capability.

The Truth Is Somewhere in the Middle

Most people aren’t corporate bankers or artists: They’re regular people seeking regular jobs. If this sounds more like you, then simply use common sense about color. As a professional resume writer, I like using color. However, I know that “less is more.” The most important part of the resumes I write—and the most important part of your resume—is not the design. Rather, the most important message in your resume is why you are the ONLY person for the job.

Amy L. Adler, MBA, MA, CARW, is president and founder of Inscribe / Express and your partner in your job search. I write exceptional resumes and cover letters that get interviews for savvy job seekers. Contact me at 801-810-JOBS.

The “Discouraged Worker”—July 2, 2010 Unemployment Data

Like most in my trade—and most of you out there looking for work—I keep my eyes and ears open to the new monthly data on unemployment. I have heard all sorts of spins on the data most recently available from the United States Department of Labor Bureau of Statistics (BLS). In fact, you could hear the glee in reporters’ scribbling as they happily reported the declining unemployment rate, currently at 9.5%, down from 9.7%.

I wanted to delve a bit deeper into the unemployment statistics. The report used a term we’re probably not too familiar with as a statistic, but we all know the punch-in-the-gut feeling it represents: “Discouraged workers.”

According to the BLS, discouraged workers are those who have ceased to search for work because they believe that there are no jobs out there that are suitable for them. The BLS statement reports that the number of discouraged workers has increased an incredible 289% to 1.2 million over the last 12 months.

To translate, that means that the number of people who have simply given up for lack of finding a job has almost tripled in the last year. This statistic differs from the number of unemployed, as “unemployed” assumes that those counted are actively seeking work. The discouraged worker surrendered to the poor economy.

Are You Discouraged?
If you are reading this blog post, you’re probably one of two things: You’re interested in the job market and actively seeking as well as shocked by the idea that things could get so bad you, too, might give up. Or you are, truly, a discouraged worker, and you’ve decided to give it one more shot.

Don’t Give Up! Get Connected to Career Resources
Regardless of how you see yourself at this very moment, don’t give up. My advice is the same. There are resources that can help you. If you need a resume, let us know. If you need career advice, we can help you with that, too. If you want to scrap your current career path and start over, let us find you a professional who can deconstruct where you’ve been and help you figure out where you want to go. If you already know all of that, and you simply need a recruiter who knows your specific industry, send us a note, and we’ll connect you with someone we know personally.

If you have a great resource, let us know why it’s incredible (it might even be you!), and we’ll add it (or you) to  my favorite career resources page .

Amy L. Adler, MBA, MA, CARW, is president and founder of Inscribe / Express and your partner in your job search. She writes exceptional resumes and cover letters that get interviews for savvy job seekers. Inscribe / Express is a full-service career documentation company and provides a 3-day turnaround time for resumes and cover letters. Contact us at 801-810-JOBS to speak one-on-one with a professional resume writer.

Soft Skills—The New Hard Skills?

Do Resume Writers Need to Unlearn Conventional Wisdom?

Imagine my surprise while perusing a recent copy of Newsweek, when I read an article called “Does the World Still Have Talent?”

thinking

Thinking about change--How adaptable are you?

http://www.newsweek.com/2010/05/27/does-the-world-still-have-talent.html. Most of the article reflected the idea that with the tremendous unemployment currently plaguing our economy, companies are still having huge problems recruiting the very executives who might be able to lead them through these tough times. Growing companies in emerging markets are having a particularly tough time keeping up with their management needs.

So the most striking comment in the article became the following, which related to individual adaptability on top of superior technical skills:

[S]kills that were previously seen as gloss on the CV—adaptability, foreign-language skills, ease in other cultures—are part of the core job description of managers.

Unlearning What We Think We Know as Resume Writers

Clearly, these types of comments have serious implications for the way we resume writers do our jobs, and as our client bases become more and more internationalized. We need to ensure that we include these types of soft skills as well as the more “wonky” (as Newsweek called them) technology skill sets. How hard will this be for us as a group? I imagine it will be pretty tough to teach old dogs new tricks; we need to adapt with the times, keep our own knowledge abreast with changing times, and, as always, produce top-tier career documentation that will get the interviews our clients need for the jobs they want.

Thoughts from resume writers and job seekers alike are welcome.

Amy L. Adler, MBA, MA, CARW, is the owner and president of Inscribe / Express, professional provider of career documentation. Contact Amy at for a free consultation about methods to improve your resume.

Demonstrate “Excellence” in Your Resume

Excellence in Personal Branding

BusinessWeek.com just posted an article on excellence. I remember the old book In Search of Excellence from the early 1980s, and personal branding strategist Dan Schawbel reminds of us of the power of that book. He takes the concept to a new level, however, in addressing personal excellence as a means to ensuring professional value in the marketplace.

I’d like to take this one step further by marrying the idea of personal branding in the job search with resume writing.

To start, the value of personal branding in a resume is well-reasoned. Resumes used to be a list of everything a job applicant used to do in the job. In fact, a recent resume client of mine joked—wistfully— that she used to simply copy her job descriptions into her resume, and that was enough to secure her the interviews she wanted.

The resume process evolved to using something we all know as the “objective statement.” Writing an objective statement was tantamount to requesting a perfect fit from an employer. This was probably easier to do when the unemployment rate was lower than its current 9.7% and companies were scrambling to fill their open positions before the operation down the street grabbed the best people.

Summary statements advanced from these objective statements to become an amalgamation of qualifications. Better than the objective statement, this technique is still used in many cases today, but I doubt you’d find a resume writer willing to write a summary statement.  Good resume writers are more likely to use the personal branding statement—a concise self-evaluation that succinctly identifies the reason a candidate is uniquely qualified to exceed every single one of a hiring manager’s expectations.

This is Schawbel’s “excellence,” translated into the process of achieving a job (rather than his explanation of the best way to keep the one you have). Your personal branding statement has to demonstrate in about the length of time it takes to read this sentence exactly why you, and only you, are the right person to jump into the position today and take it to new levels beyond which the ordinary candidate could not possibly go.

Can you do this? Are you that candidate? I bet you are—you just need to show it in your resume.  Your well-crafted personal branding statement will sing the tune the hiring manager wants to hear.

 

7 Words You Can’t Say in a Resume

You won’t impress hiring managers with bland language. Show them, don’t tell them

  • what you have done
  • why your experience is phenomenal
  • how you can hit the ground running on the first day of your new job.

You’re an extraordinary candidate: Present your career history in extraordinary terms!

Want to amaze your reader? AVOID using these 7 words in your resume—choose action-oriented, powerful verbs that demonstrate why you’re the best person for the job.

1. Responsible for

Responsibility is a good thing. Taking responsibility is also a good thing. Passively suggesting that you were somehow involved in some activity at your place of work? Not such a good thing. Explain how you project managed a sales project yielding 35% ROI, jump-started new a new promotional technique, or delivered top-line revenue increases.

2. Managed

To manage a task means to control it, guide it, or, in the case of people, coach or mentor them. To manage to do something, however, implies just getting by, a capability that no job candidate wishes to offer a hiring manager who doesn’t have time to waste on apparent slackers.

3. Acted as

This one makes one wonder if the candidate was really doing X or Y, or was he simply acting that way. Substitute engaged as, in the case of a candidate’s being asked to do something apart from his standard job description (think: consulting engagement).

4. Grew

Flowers grow, and gardeners grow flowers. I tend to think that if it’s not organic with stems full of leafy greens, it’s not going to grow. Try increased or generated. Even enlarged will work, in the case of territories or markets. Developed is a good possibility as well.

5. Was involved

Like “responsible for,” this one brings to mind someone who stood and watched from the sidelines. Spice up your accomplishments by telling the recruiter or hiring manager how you identified a new sales opportunity, introduced a new method of communicating across silos, or piloted an investigative project that ultimately yielded $5 million in new business.

6. Bring

“Bring” implies hand delivery, but your resume is a professional, not personal, document. Give displayed, demonstrated, arranged, or exhibited a try to emphasize your strengths in accomplishing any of the foregoing.

7. Assisted

Even if you think you only helped to accomplish a project, demonstrate through careful and strong writing how you teamed with executive management or collaborated with division director to introduce a new product or process.

Contact Inscribe / Express for a free analysis of the language you use in your resume. Is it powerful enough? Will you convince a recruiter or hiring manager to call?