I Don’t Have a College Degree

Now, more than ever, “professional” job descriptions include a specific level of education required (four-year college degree), with additional education preferred (master’s degree). Going to college has become the traditional route for most high school graduates – it’s just what comes next.

I won’t debate the merits of a college degree as a requirement (although I do have a ton to say about this), but this trendy requirement has left many qualified working professionals without a degree, in a lurch.

What are you supposed to do if you don’t have a college degree? How do you get a new job?

First, let’s talk about what a college degree is supposed to show to a recruiter – knowledge, skills, determination, and a thirst for learning. Without a degree, you have to show these same skills and knowledge, in another way!

If you have been working for more than 10 years, there is no doubt that you possess all of these attributes… and they are probably more applicable than what was learned during your college years.

Show me baby!

Knowledge: Think about areas in which you are a subject matter expert. What do you know like the back of your hand? What class could you teach in school? Take this expertise and incorporate it into your resume and cover letter. You want it to shout, “I know so much about this!”

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When HR Screws Up Royally

There are few things that I read these days that shock me into slack-jaw syndrome. But I had one of those moments yesterday, followed quickly with: “HR just effed that up royally. Whoa.”

Yahoo! sent an internal memo to every single one of their global employees, telling them that they will be enforcing a 100% butts-in-seats working model. All employees will need to show-up to work at a Yahoo! office beginning this summer. Um, what?

The news was delivered by the head of Human Resources, as a clear mandate from the new CEO, Marisa Mayer.

Here’s the thing – Yahoo! has been flailing for many years. I saw them lose a huge building campus because they didn’t have enough employees after rounds of layoffs, to justify the expense; they are not winning the search engine war; and were clearly in search of a hero when they hired Mayer last year.

But they do have talent working there still… and they just pissed them off, beyond repair.

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Layoffs – A Behind the Scenes Look at Reductions in Force

It appears that while there are fewer reductions in force (RIFs) or layoffs these days than say, three years ago, layoffs are still happening and can be quite confusing to the non-HR (ok, probably to most HR people too) employee. I have had the unfortunate experience to be a part of several different layoffs at various companies.

The fear and concern that employee’s face when they “feel” a RIF coming on, is frightening, so I’d like to share a behind the scenes look at what typically happens and how employees are “chosen.” Please note that this is a collection of my own experiences (from a Human Resources perspective), at several companies – not a single one in particular.

The RIF Process

As secretive and scary that an upcoming reduction in force is, there are usually signs that layoffs are coming. Each company is different, but typically when there is a lot of smoke, there is fire. The company’s finances and/or numbers are way off – you should absolutely know and feel if this is the case. There are several secretive meetings with management and Human Resources – I’m talking, several meetings that are more frequent than normal.

Your manager has trouble looking you, or anyone else on the team, in the eye. Or perhaps your job is being shipped to another location. The critical factor here is the financials – if your company is not making enough money to justify and pay employees, it has to decrease costs by letting employees go.

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How to Land a Job: Secrets from an HR Insider

It’s time to start job landing instead of job hunting!

I am so excited that my new book is finally available! In How to Land a Job: Secrets from an HR Insider, I share everything I have learned working in Human Resources, as an experienced job seeker, and from all of the clients I have helped along the way. So many people have shared in my frustration at the lack of relevant and current job seeking information out there – most of the “popular” books were published 20 years ago. I promise you that the job market and hunt then, is much different than it is now.

Ready to buy? Looking for testimonials? No problem!

What is How to Land a Job?

This is THE definitive guide to landing a job, once and for all. Been searching for ages and not getting any traction? I’ll help you troubleshoot why and start getting calls. Bored in your current job and want to find a better one? I’ll show you how to construct a “secret” job search and negotiate the details in your new offer. Not sure where to start or what type of job to apply to? I have included a to-do list for you to follow and help you determine, based on your experience, the exact job you should be applying for. And so much more! You can find all of the details about the book and a chapter breakdown over at Land-A-Job.com.

Important Things to Note

  1. You have three different packages to choose from – the ebook itself, extra templates and examples, and your own resume critique with coaching discounts. Read more about the different prices here. (The ebook is only $10!).
  2. If you are a newsletter subscriber, you just received a 20% discount. Not a subscriber, but want the code? No problem, sign-up now and you will have access to the discount coupon through October 11, 2012 (11:59pm ET).
  3. The first 10 people who purchase the Complete Package, will get an additional 10% off coaching sessions, for a total of 20% discount.
  4. There is a fabulous giveaway and review over on Frugal Beautiful that you must absolutely check out – and don’t forget to enter to win.

PS Bloggers: I have an awesome affiliate program where you earn 51% of sales. Check out the details here.


5 Ways to Become a Strategic Hire

The best candidate doesn’t always get the job. In fact, rarely does the top candidate win the position – instead, they are beat out by someone else. A strategic hire. A better interviewer. A more likable person. A friend of the hiring manager. And so on. Companies have to hire in their own best interests and sometimes that means making a strategic decision over “qualifications.”

What Does Strategic Hiring Mean?

By definition, making a “strategic hire” means that the company chooses the candidate that has the ability to elevate the company in a significant way. For example: for a sales position, it may mean that they choose the candidate with the most direct, long-term relationships with a customer they have been trying to close. For a publicity position, it could be hiring the person with the most “social clout” instead of the person who has secured the most reviews. In a research and development position, it could be choosing the candidate with the most patents instead of the one who knows the technology.

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