Episode #116 – Marc Miller invites Susan Joyce of Job-Hunt.org to help answer listener questions about searching for employment in the second half of life.
In this episode, Susan Joyce of Job-Hunt.org joins Marc Miller to read and respond to listener questions. They discuss building your online reputation, marketing your content boldly, pigeonholing, and pivoting. Marc hopes you enjoy this fascinating episode.
[1:43] Marc welcomes you to Episode 116 of the Repurpose Your Career podcast. Career Pivot brings you this podcast. CareerPivot.com is one of the very few websites dedicated to those of us in the second half of life and our careers. Please take a moment to check out the blog and the other resources delivered to you, free of charge.
[2:12] If you are enjoying this podcast, please share it with other like-minded souls. Subscribe on CareerPivot.com, iTunes, or any of the other apps that supply podcasts. Share it on social media or just tell your neighbors, and colleagues. The more people Marc can reach, the more he can help.
[2:33] Next week, Marc will interview Chris Farrell, author of Purpose and a Paycheck
[2:39] This week is a Question and Answer episode where Marc joins forces with Susan Joyce of Job-Hunt.org, one of the premier job search and career resources on the internet.
[2:57] Marc welcomes Susan to the Repurpose Your Career podcast.
Now on to the podcast…
[3:11] Marc and Susan will answer some really interesting questions for you. First, Susan introduces herself. Susan has been doing Job-Hunt for 20 years. She started after she was laid off with thousands of others from a very large company. Web technology was new, but Susan had already worked with it at the company.
[3:41] Susan started working to help people learn to apply the technology for job search, ever since. Susan was previously a guest on the podcast in Episode 105.
[3:54] Q1: I am 61 and have been unemployed for almost two years. I pick up a consulting gig here and there. We’re in a part of Ohio that’s not doing well. We plan to move to North Carolina. My wife and I have been networking there but nothing has come from it.
[4:21] I have a consumer packaged goods and business operations background with startups and big companies. I’m looking at buying a business because I am convinced that getting full-time employment is not possible. What advice do you have for me?
[4:37] A1: Susan says this is not an uncommon question. She tells the listener to Google himself. There could be something negative online, even if it’s about someone else with the same name. Susan shares anecdotes about sharing a name with a notorious figure. Add your initial or middle name to your business card to differentiate.
[7:09] Marc tells people that when they Google their name, if nothing comes up, that’s not good, either. Marc encourages people to build their own online reputation by producing content. Susan points out that recruiters will research candidates online. Provide solid evidence of what you do and who you are.
[8:24] If you don’t have good content that you’ve put out there on purpose, what they find is information aggregator listings of data collected from public records. If you have a LinkedIn profile, Google usually puts it in the first page of search results, unless you’re a movie star.
[8:52] There are probably hundreds of organizations that collect information from public documents and combine it with what they find on Facebook, which has the birthday. If you’re trying to downplay your age, it won’t help to be too private. Make sure you have a LinkedIn profile.
[10:23] Q2: I have been reluctant to publish anything under my own name online because I’m scared of being criticized. I am moving into a very niche area of business analytics where I have a background but no real recent experience. Everyone is telling me I should publish some of my own work but that terrifies me? Advice?
[10:51] A2: Susan says you’ve got to publish. This person should get some feedback from colleagues before publishing, and then put it out there. You have to have proof that you know what you claim you know. 80% of recruiters will do the research and if they don’t find something that supports what you claim, they don’t believe it.
[11:37] That means, what you claim has to be published with the same name that you use on your job applications and your resume. Some people call themselves William on their resume but they’re Bill on their LinkedIn profile. So they make it harder for recruiters to connect those dots.
[12:03] The job market’s getting tight enough that recruiters are going to try harder to connect the dots but if they have a lot of applicants, they aren’t going to. Use the right name and make it clear that you know what you know.
[12:20] This person should do some volunteering or some contracting to gain some experience — something she can add to her social presence that demonstrates that she knows what she says she knows and that she’s right about it.
[12:37] Marc tells people, “Show me you know your stuff, don’t tell me you know your stuff.” Go out and make a presentation and get someone to shoot it on their iPhone. Pick snippets and pieces to put up on YouTube. Take the presentation itself and publish it on Slideshare, which is owned by LinkedIn.
[13:20] Marc suggest getting online and doing your presentation like there’s someone there and record it. Do a webinar with no audience and record it. Put that on YouTube. You can edit it before you put it up to make sure you sound good.
[13:59] Q3: I’m over 60 and was laid off over a year ago and have been looking with no luck. I have done so many things in my career I do not want to pigeonhole myself into looking for just one thing. This is not working. What advice do you have for me?
[14:20] A3: Susan tells job seekers that pigeon holes are where the jobs are, now. If you don’t pigeonhole yourself, you’re going to have a very long, difficult job search. Employers are looking for proof that you know what you know. It’s much better to claim the thing that you’re best at and enjoy the most, and make that visible.
[15:07] If you’re not focused on one thing, with a good personal brand, recruiters are going to think you don’t know much about anything. Pick the field you like the best and market yourself as the person you can do that job very well and you will get a job. It’s taking him so long because he’s not pigeonholed.
[17:12] The keywords are so important. Susan has an MBA in MIS, from when it was a hot term. Now IT is the current keyword for that field. No one searches for MIS jobs. Keep your keywords up-to-date so you can be found. Marketing yourself as an MIS expert isn’t going to get you anywhere, now.
[17:58] Marc spent a lot of his career in Training. Now the current keyword term is Learning and Development. Marc has adjusted the Training titles in his LinkedIn profile to Learning and Development. (But, hopefully, he never has to look for a job again.)
[18:40] Q4: I’ve been in the finance banking industry for my entire career. The profession has gone from where you met with clients and worked with them to solve problems to one where everything is done online and it’s now about pushing through loans to meet tight deadlines.
[18:58] I want to move into HR and I’m working on some credentials, but I make too much money in my current position. How do I get someone at my current company to take me seriously in wanting to make this change?
[19:14] A4: Susan recommends she contact somebody in HR and see if she can do an informational interview. What are they looking for? What would they need for her to prove that she really is serious about HR? Susan strongly suspects she will take a big salary hit, going from sales to HR.
[19:39] If she is OK with that, talk to someone in HR or at another similar company in HR, or go to an HR organization’s meeting. Get to know the people. Buy someone dinner and see if they will spend some time sharing information about how to transition from what she’s doing into HR.
[20:20] People in HR are typically pretty helpful people, and she may end up with a mentor or two that will help her make the transition. Of course, she has to continue the credentialing and finish them.
[20:46] She should do some volunteering, or get a gig, four hours a week helping some organization with HR and build up the experience so she’ll have something to put on her LinkedIn profile and on her resume. Susan says to start transitioning the LinkedIn profile carefully to the new field.
[21:16] People who want to buy from her now may not be excited to learn that her greatest area of expertise is HR but when they talk with her they’ll probably know that she knows what she’s talking about in her current field.
[21:31] Marc stresses that in making transitions like this that you’ll never do it alone. In his career changes, they all have been half-step career moves. He had one foot in the old world, one foot in the new world, and there was always someone who took him across. He never did it alone and it was usually not a massive shift.
[22:04] If you’re an engineer and you want to be a pastry chef, you’re not going to make it in one fell swoop. You’ve really got to get out of your own head and talk to people, and find out the reality. Don’t suffer from Make Stuff Up (MSU) Disorder.
[22:36] We all make assumptions. You don’t know what they’re looking for unless you go talk to them. Don’t assume there’s nothing bad attached to your name online. It’s surprising to Susan how often she does a search on an unusual name to find there are 10 other profiles with the same name.
[23:45] Marc knows a Mark Miller who writes on ageism and the Boomer demographic. He just wrote a book named Jolt. Sometimes they get mistaken for each other. Marc plans to have him on the podcast in the next six months.
[24:47] Marc thanks Susan for helping him answer these questions.
[25:03] Marc hopes you enjoyed this episode. Marc is looking for other experts to help him answer questions in addition to Mark Anthony Dyson and Susan Joyce.
[25:14] Susan Lahey and Marc are working on the next edition of Repurpose Your Career, and Marc is looking for your help. Marc is forming a release team of readers who will get access to pre-release chapters of the book to provide feedback.
[25:27] You can be part of this team by going to CareerPivot.com/RYCTeam where you can sign up.
[25:34] When you sign up, you’ll receive the pre-release version of the chapters when they become available. What Marc asks in return is for you to provide feedback and be prepared to write a review on Amazon.com when the book is released.
[25:47] The CareerPivot.com/Community website has become a valuable resource for almost 50 members who are participating in the Beta phase of this project. Marc is currently recruiting new members for the next cohort.
[25:59] If you are interested in the endeavor and would like to be put on the waiting list, please go to CareerPivot.com/Community. When you sign up you’ll receive information about the community as it evolves.
[26:13] Those in the initial cohorts will get to set the direction for this endeavor. This is a paid membership community with group coaching and special content. More importantly, it will be a community where you can seek help. Go to CareerPivot.com/Community to learn more.
[26:34] Marc invites you to connect with him on LinkedIn.com/in/mrmiller. Just include in the connection request that you heard Marc on this podcast. You can look for Career Pivot on Facebook, LinkedIn, or @CareerPivot on Twitter.
[26:50] Please come back next week, when Marc will interview Chris Farrell, author of Purpose and a Paycheck.
[26:57] Marc thanks you for listening to the Repurpose Your Career podcast.
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