Archive for the ‘career changers’ Category

When You Can’t See the Forest for the Trees

Have you ever wanted to move forward in your life but did not and then, later, the answer to move you to that end-result was in front of you all along? I’ll admit that I’ve been there a time or two, but it brought this to light in some work I’ve done recently.

I was working with a young man who was looking to make some job changes, as they were not making enough financially and found themselves struggling. In exploring their options and discovering their calling, they revealed that they really liked working on computers and would like a job in the field but did not know how to go about doing so. Imagine my surprise as we moved on to discover that they actually had completed their AA degree in computer networking and an A+ certification.

What? Here was someone who was struggling with how to proceed in their career while already having viable tools at their disposal. This young man could not see his forest for the trees he had planted; his mindset and outlook were blocking his view. He admitted that he tended to only focus on how he would get started or use his education; this confused state led him to take the first job he found. But, he was no longer willing to stay in this state, thus his coming to me.


How many have been in the same situation as this young man, frustrated at their current situation, wondering how to proceed, but allowing these doubt and frustrations to keep them down? Truthfully, it’s what keeps those in the personal development field in business. Self-doubt and lack of confidence are poison as they raise fears that can be paralyzing, leading one to stay in the same place and not seeing what could be ahead.

Overcoming our fears is not easy, as our body is meant to search out for threats it detects – doing something new is threatening.  But, we have to question these fears to know if they are a reality we have to deal with. If we face something that threatened us in the past, i.e. getting yelled at, being told a negative comment, failed at something, etc., we don’t know if the same incident will happen, or in the same way yet we live as if it will.

Questioning the source of your fears is the only way to move past them – are they absolutely true, which no one can say with certainty. Being a problem-solver to the situation will also alleviate any doubt and puts your brain into action mode for potential solutions to any issue you face. For this young man, it became for him to explore the varying careers/jobs in the IT field and organizations who are looking for someone with his background. He also was able to focus on connections he could make who could refer him to a potential hirer, as well as places he could contact to volunteer in order to get some experience.

Coming up with a viable plan for his next steps was useful in chopping down any trees that were blocking his view from his future. Our work still will focus on reinforcing positive actions he is taking, as well as continuing to overcome his fears but this young man left with renewed hope and spirit that will take him far.

I saw a great quote today that related to this topic: “If something isn’t working, move. You’re not a tree.” (author, unknown). Your path may covered by obstacles (trees) but you don’t have to stay behind them- go around them, over them, or cut them down. There’s always a way.

If you’re facing obstacles to achieving your goals or desires, let’s talk; contact us at



When Is It You and When Is It Chance?

I get really irked when I hear someone diminish themselves, attributing something great they’ve done to chance, someone else, a higher power, etc. They seriously are not aware that they are the reasons for their success. For example, let’s say a client named Jane comes in with good news that she got a new position with her company; Jane had been working this for a while but now, while grateful, states what a ‘stroke of luck’ she had to get this promotion.

What Jane doesn’t realize is that her good fortune was because of her – actions she took and willingness to step up and put her name in the hat for consideration. Jane needs to remember how she took the time to review her skills and recent experiences so they matched with the job; or the time she networked with her new boss at an office function, by taking a risk and introducing herself; or the kudos she got for completing a big project. I think it’s easy to attribute our success to an exterior source.

Perhaps this is due to a humble mindset or low self-esteem; but the fact remains that the way to get past those and really succeed is to embrace that, while others may have had a part, we really are the drivers in the process. It is we who takes the risks, who acquire the knowledge and skills, who finish the project, who leads. By owning our skills and abilities, and the like, we then become more of who we are; we work more authentically and confidently:

  • Daily, write down at least 3 ‘win’s for the day, no matter how big or small
  • review your work outcome and your part so you can ‘see’ the exact mindset and actions you took to get them completed, i.e. problem-solving, analysis, organization, etc.

So, no more brushing off what you do and attributing them to an external factor; time to start recognizing and giving kudos to yourself. Own your success to soar!

Ever Wonder Why You Don’t Get Called Back for a Job Submission?

If you’re a job seeker, or plan to be, I’m sure you’ve experienced this story:

You peruse job boards looking for a good ‘fit’ for your skills and experience; you’ve updated your resume and polished off your interviewing skills as you wait for the phone to ring so you impress and get hired. But then you wait….and wait… and wait. You then begin to wonder if something happened; then you get more frustrated and get angry that the potential company didn’t even have the courtesy to respond. It makes you feel like giving up some days.

Sound familiar? First off, know that you are not alone. So, this may share some light for you as to why you may never get a phone call back from an employer or a recruiter: volume and overload. Recently, I was in a meeting comprised of recruiters and that was the consensus form the group – they have too many applicants and not enough time to get back to everyone. But, the real message here – and agreed also upon by the group – is that there are too many people applying for jobs they are not qualified for, which is leading to overload.

Some of the stories are not far-fetched as I could see how one could match a skill for a preferred skill but, according to recruiters, why bother if you don’t have the exact match for the job description. In defense of recruiters, they are given a job description to follow and then seek out individuals who have all of the requirements for that job, so they are following what the employer tells them. However, if a job seeker is not being keyword specific or if really just sending out an application to try and find any job, then they will be out of luck.

The basic message here is two-fold:

  1. Ensure that you read the job description carefully for the exact skills and experience an employer wants
  2. Match your skills to that job and write the application/resume to them, ensuring you can back them up

It is loud and clear that those doing the hiring are not interested in you if you think you have the skills or experience for an open job; they want you to hit the ground running which is why this diligence in matching jobs-to-skills and finding the right candidate.

The next time you don’t hear back on a job submission, take heart that it might not mean you’re not a good candidate; it might mean you’re not a good candidate for that particular job. Being strategic in your job search will help set you up and ensure you are finding the ‘right’ positions to apply to. So before you hit ‘send,’ ensure that you are the best match. It will work if you do.

If you’re ready to make a job transition and feel ‘stuck,’ contact us today for a complimentary Discovery Session to learn more:



It’s Time to Leap to Your Next Big Thing

Today is a rather momentous day, if you will: it is the last day of the month and Leap Day. I’m seeing all types of posts on Facebook and through other social media formats of what this day can mean in ‘leaping’ forward; I’ve seen trying a new food or wearing something you’d never wear, such as stripes or a collarless shirt.

Since we’re at the last day of February, we’re ready to leap to March – what are your plans for what you want the next 31 days to look like? This is a great time to make new plans, new goals, new thresholds for what you want to do in your career and your life. I like the premise of doing something you’ve not done before – challenging yourself- with the idea of leaping, or moving forward. They both go together wonderfully.

  1. What is on your ‘to do’ or bucket list? What did you say you would do in those resolutions a couple months back? What are you feeling you need more of are ready to do? Answering these questions will help you to make a decision on a specific action you want to accomplish by March 31
  2. Start with choosing one of those (not to overwhelm) and write it out very specifically, i.e. I will be in my new job as an IT software developer by March 31. What this does is create a visual on the goal, which the brain will latch on to and want to achieve it, as well as giving it a deadline. The more specific we are, the more compelling it becomes and then we will seek out the ways to get it.
  3. Write out every possible action you would need to take to get that goal accomplished; this is not about limiting but about every possibility out there – this is where you may need to ‘leap’ and stretch in what those may be. Work backwards from March 31 (you in our new role), thinking of what it took to get there; this will really expand the creative side of the brain to come up with ideas you might not think of in a conscious state (left side).
  4. Armed now with a goal and specific steps to take, make the leap; decide what time you will make it to hold yourself accountable and get mentally prepared. Then, begin. It may feel a bit scary at first but the more you, the easier it will become and the faster results you will see.

You were ‘given’ this extra day, which only occurs every 4 years – don’t you want to spend it doing something that, while it may feel uncomfortable, will move you to the career and life you dream of.  Feel the fear and ‘leap’ anyway!

(Happy Birthday to all you Leaplings, the ‘official name for those born this day in case you didn’t know!)

Good News in the Hiring Department

A new report from CareerBuilder is very encouraging in the way of hiring for the coming year. If you are in job-search mode this is good news. According to their latest results from a survey they did regarding job forecasting, companies are planning to not only hire more but also to do better work in the area of retention and rewards, particularly for high performers (which is why you want to be one).

Here are the areas where hiring is predicted to increase:

  • Customer service—32 percent
  • Information technology—29 percent
  • Sales—27
  • Production—24 percent
  • Administrative—20 percent
  • Marketing—18 percent
  • Business development—16 percent
  • Human resources—16 percent
  • Accounting/finance—15 percent
  • Engineering—13 percent

Forty-two percent of larger companies plan to hire more while twenty seven percent of smaller companies plan to do so. If you work in any of these industries you have more opportunity: healthcare (43%), financial services (46%) or information technology (IT) (44%).  Another fact from the report is good news for high school and college students as 25% of those surveyed stated that they would offer internship opportunities.

Time to dust off that resume and get prepared to apply for your next career opportunity!

If you’d like help with job search preparations, contact us today to get started:

Do You Know How You’re Perceived by Others?

I just started a business branding coaching program (yes, coaches need a coach) and I had to step outside of my comfort zone a bit for an exercise I was given immediately; no thinking, no delaying – just acting. The exercise was to write a post on Facebook to ask what others would describe me in one word. I have done this exercise in a small scale with 5-7 people but not at such a huge one as the world-wide web. I must say that almost immediately I had very positive comments coming through and that still are. It really shed some light on how I’m perceived by others which will add to my brand and attracting the right people to me.

Knowing how others see you is important to know for your career; we all tend to have a different view of how we are perceived and known by others which is not always apparent, and we can usually think it’s in a negative way. We then tend to act on how we think we are perceived: if it’s positive, then we will act bolder and more confident, but if we think it’s of a negative nature then we will tend to hide, being more mild and meek, not speaking up, or acting as if you lack confidence.

Perceptions are everything, whether right or wrong; but this is how people will initially view you and see if they want to interact with you more; if you act closed off, it’s not a good indication that people will want to approach you or continue a conversation; being too talkative or high energy can put off someone who is quieter in nature; if you have a loud voice someone might think you are being aggressive. The result? You might not get the job, or get passed over for that promotion, or don’t secure that potential new client.

Whether good or bad, knowing how others perceive you can help you to amend any behaviors that may not come across as open or welcoming which can then lead to more positive interactions, and can increase your self-confidence and enhancing your good qualities and getting you noticed in a good light.

I challenge you to go post the question on Facebook, or whatever social media platform you prefer, and ask the question to be described in one word; you also can go ask 10-20 people you know that question. Yes, it sounds scary but I bet you will also be pleasantly surprised by the positive comments you will hear as to what others think of you. Armed with this information, you can step into those shoes and be more of who you are. I’d love to hear your results and comments!

The Power of the ‘Thank You’ Note

If you are in job-search mode and have been fortunate to get an interview, one of the most powerful steps you can take is to send the interviewer(s) a hand-written thank you note.  This can actually make of break your chances of getting hired.  In an interview, a recruiter from the Pursell Group stated that a hand-written note can be a deal-breaker as sending one shows respect and attention to detail, while not sending one shows the opposite.

The handwritten version, as opposed to email, can show an employer:

  • that you have valued your time with them and appreciate that time
  • it can show your eagerness for the position and allows you the opportunity to reiterate that excitement
  • gives you the opportunity to highlight your skills or experiences and why you are a great fit for their organziation
  • speaks highly of your character which makes you stand-out from the crowd

Not sure what to say or how to go about it? My suggestions are to make it short but powerful:

  • Buy note cards that look professional, meaning nothing with flowers or pictures on them
  • Address the interviewer by name
  • State that you want to thank them for their time in meeting with you and how much you enjoyed your conversation, and learning more about the position and the organization I (I would add the day/date you met to remind them)
  • Let them know how that after the meeting, you believe you are a great fit for the job and the organization and state one or two examples for why you believe this – you can highlight one of your experiences/outcomes that you want them to remember
  • Close with thanking them again and then letting them know that you are looking forward to hearing from them or to hearing about the next steps; close with either “Sincerely” or “Respectfully” and sign your full name

Whether you have interviewed internally or externally, it is always a good idea to follow-up with the interviewer to keep you fresh in their minds and memorable and a thank-you note is a great way to do so!

If you want support in developing a job search strategy, or making a job transition, then contact us to get started; it’s proven that you can reach goals faster with a coach so don’t struggle any longer.


Whether you have interviewed internally,

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