Early in my career, I was an advisor to cabinet officers in two White House administrations. I then worked for several members of the U.S. Senate. Although this was my only experience in government work, it gave me a good taste for career management. After all, in those posts, I was a political appointee with virtually zero job security beyond my own competence. On any given day I could have been fired for wearing the wrong tie to work.
There may be many things holding you back from potentially landing that dream job, one of which is getting discovered online, which is a critical component of any job search. Another important facet of any job search is tailoring your resume to incorporate more SEO (search engine optimization) terms to help your name show up more frequently in search results. But what about personal branding? This is also an important piece of a job search that can’t be overlooked. Here are some reasons why you need both personal SEO and personal branding when searching for your next job.
Every business needs a captain, a person that sets the stage for all actions and all relationships that take place within the work environment. If you, as a leader, do not set the stage by defining and aligning practices to clear performance standards and values expectations, people will be left to “figure it out on their own.” This leads to widely varying practices – not aligned, proven practices. That lack of clarity and alignment erodes consistent performance, service, and results.
I smiled as I watched the dad with his two-your old son scurry to the hotel escalator. The dad held his son’s hand firmly and flew him a few inches off the ground to land squarely on the moving step. The boy giggled and wiggled as if he was on an amusement park ride. On the ride down, the little boy leaned forward in anticipation as if ready for take-off. I cringed with worry envisioning sharp escalator teeth against soft, baby skin. But his dad calmly said—“No, not yet. Wait for it.”
No one looks at more resumes than human resources specialists, so crafting or revamping their own resumes must be a breeze for these savvy professionals. Then again, it’s easy to feel pressured when instead of evaluating someone else’s background and potential you are trying to showcase your own.
Mid-level career professionals oftentimes get comfortable in their positions, however, when it comes to job searching, it can be even more of a challenge. I usually hear from my clients that there are things that they may not be good at, so they just stop doing them, or they became comfortable in their role, or a combination of those to continue challenging themselves as they did early on in their career. So, what are the things that mid-level career professionals should be spending time on in a job search and why? Let’s look at the strategies they oftentimes skip, miss, and even resist.
What truly makes a candidate or employee stand out from the crowd? Believe it or not, nowadays, people place more importance and values on the soft over the hard skills. Getting a job might require a set of hard, technical skills. But to keep it, you need the soft ones.
Although there are plenty of resources for learning about the federal hiring process and how to format a federal resume, not much is said about what to write on a federal resume. How do you know that you are presenting the best information that each employer is looking for? There are three places on a federal job opportunity announcement (JOA) that you must look in order to find the necessary information that must be demonstrated in your resume. They are presented here in order of value.
The U.S. Government as a leading venture capitalist, wow, is this a joke? This sounds like industrial policy, public intervention, and “picking winners.” It is something that European and East Asian governments do, but not us, right? Think again. The U.S. government has actually played a major role in developing many innovations used by our technology giants to reach worldwide dominance.
Have you ever noticed the raised reflective pavement markers that reflect white light at night when you have your headlights on? As a transportation engineer, I see things on the road that many others may not. Some may not know that they reflect red if you are headed the wrong way. (Hopefully, you’ve never seen this in action!)