November New Leaders Academy with Bart Cleveland – “I Need to Change My Career, Now What?” Part II

By Jess Zimmerman

As I noted previously, New Leaders Academy is not simply a series of lectures, but rather interactive workshops to help you discover your career desires and how to make them a reality!

During his presentation, Bart Cleveland provided us with beneficial tools and guidance for completing “me” research (refer to Part I), as well as how to utilize this research and put it into play as we apply to our dream jobs.  Here are professional suggestions.

An effective cover letter:

An effective cover letter is an ad.  You have a single objective, a specific consumer, a desired response.

  • Tell vs. show.  Keep it simple, memorable, and distinct
  • Make it brief.  Write 3-4 short paragraphs (each paragraph no longer than 5 lines); Avoid adjectives, adverbs, hyperboles 
  • Address the individual.  Complete research to obtain their name, if needed.
  • State the job you are looking for and why you’re the best candidate (show, don’t tell; Bart reiterates, “we don’t believe what we’re told, we believe what we see.”) 
  • Proofread.  The best method of proofreading is to read it out loud
  • Make your cover letter both personable and professional

An effective resume:

An effective resume is very much like a cover letter, but more difficult.  It’s hard to do well.  Just like your cover letter, your resume is an ad with a single objective, a specific consumer, a desired response

  • Well written
  • Well designed.  Utilize online resources, such as Noupe for free resume template design
  • Easily scanned.  Keep it simple and clean.
  • Ensure it is 100% error free

Bart’s suggested resource: Rockport Institute Resume Writing – test your resume as they walk you through each step of developing an effective resume

Nail the interview, get the job!

  • Prepare.  Know the company, know the job, know the people.
  • Be a pro.  Be the pro you want to be; everything you say tells them you can do the job.
  • Listen and speak effectively.  Pauses are okay.  Think about the answer and then provide a brief answer, to the question they asked (don’t tip toe around it).
  • Sell yourself without seeming arrogant.  Talk about yourself and show you are what you say.
  • You really are it!  Don’t make it your opinion, make it someone else’s opinion (i.e. in reviews with my boss I’m told I’m very good at connecting with others…).
  • Leave a positive first impression.  Send a thank you via email right away; place handwritten note in the mail within 1-2 days.
  • Keep in mind  job interview is the “what’s-wrong-with-this-person?” meeting. Companies are scared to death of hiring the wrong person.  

Bart’s suggested resource: Job Interviews for Dummies

What to do when you get an offer:

  • Let them give details first.  Let them do the talking, then respond; chances are, they will answer your questions, if you listen to what they have to say.
  • Only ask for things that matter (Bart’s suggestion of things that don’t matter: number of vacation days, slight difference in salary (this is your dream job, right?…the money will come)).

Now, get out there and show them what you’ve got.  You’re going to rock this process!  Dream job, here you come!

Sending positive thoughts your way!

About the writer: Jess Zimmerman, RD, LD relocated from Chicago to Austin in August.  In addition to warming up her winters, she is excited to regularly explore and experience Austin’s farmers markets, natural springs, hiking trails, kayaking, and events!  Jess is a registered dietitian and owner of Nutrition by Jessica.  She uses a food-as-medicine approach to educate and motivate you to thrive and grow, working with you to become empowered, focused, and energized through your food choices!

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