Branding Statements. The Essence of Who You Are

Resume Branding Statement

I am often asked by candidates to review their resume and provide initial impressions. In a previous blog, I wrote about “The Seven Deadly Sins Of Resume Writing” which discusses the tactical side of a resume such as spelling, grammar, past/present tense, duties vs. responsibilities for job descriptions, etc. In this blog I’ll discuss the advantage of a Branding Statement to capture the essence of you.

 

“The Resume Branding Statement” is a short one-line statement located at the top of your resume to describe who you are and what you do. It takes the pace of the outdated “Objective” section. It’s a real power statement for reviewers of your resume to quickly determine what you do, what you bring to the table, and how you can benefit their company. It should build confidence in the reader to justify spending more time to go through the remainder of your resume. It takes a while to develop the feel of a good branding statement so, below are a few examples I’ve come across over the years.

 

Branding Statements Examples:

  • Product Management Professional Specializing in Cloud-based Solutions
  • Account Executive Specializing in Software Products and Services
  • Trusted IT Advisor
  • Visionary Project Manager With Proven Track Record
  • Product Driven Executive with Demonstrated Experience In Creating Compelling Online Companies
  • Experienced Director Building & Managing World-Class Multifunctional Teams
  • Seasoned Top-Performing Technically Proficient Pre-Sales Professional
  • Specializing in Tech Sales Enablement of High-Volume Channel & Partner Sales
  • Sales, Marketing & Business Development Management Professional
  • Corporate Budgeting Planning Specialist with 15+ Years Experience

 

The important thing there is to create a branding statement that is short and to the point. It needs to be customized for the position(s) you are applying to. It’s best to position the branding statement underneath your name and before your core competency section and make it stand out by using a different font or italics, all of which comes before your Professional Experience section.

EXAMPLE:

Bob WonderSalesGuy

(415) 555-1234

email@somedomain.com

 

~ Sales Professional Specializing in Cloud-based Solutions ~

 

CORE COMPETENCIES:

 

PROFESSIONAL EXPERIENCE

– etc.

At Fairwinds Recruiting we offer a resume review and assessment service. Click on Resume Tools to learn more.

Dan Counts Founder Fairwinds RecruitingDan Counts, Founder of Fairwinds Recruiting (Twitter @FairwindsRcrtg) is a recruiter/coach for candidates and clients, specializing in the software and consulting industries for Enterprise Performance Management (Oracle/Hyperion), Business Intelligence, Human Capital Management, Data Science/Big Data, Cyber Risk Security, Sales, and Product Management. His hands-on positive style as an advisor to candidates and clients provides an environment for redefining the recruitment experience one placement at a time, resulting in better long-term matches. Residing in Monterey, CA near Silicon Valley, he works with boutique firms to large companies nationwide. In his free time he enjoys sailing, hiking/walking, woodworking and most recently home coffee roasting. You can check out his website at www.fairwindsrecruiting.com.

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Top 10 Questions Job Seekers Should Ask In an Interview

Top 10 Interview Questions

In the quest for that “perfect” next career opportunity, many job seekers focus so hard on answering interview questions that they forget something very important: They are there to ask questions, too!

Asking the right questions at an interview is important for two reasons. First, when done correctly, the questions you ask confirm your qualifications as a candidate for the position. Second, you are interviewing the employer just as much as the employer is interviewing you. This is your opportunity to find out if this is an organization where you want to work.

Many hiring mangers say they gauge the strength of a candidate by the type of questions they ask.

When you ask the right questions, you want to achieve three things: (1) Make sure the interviewer has no reservations about you; (2) Demonstrate your interest in working with the employer; and (3) Find out if the employer is the right fit for you – corporate culture for instance.

There is an infinite number of questions you could ask during a job interview, but if you stay focused on those three goals, the questions should come easy to you.

10 Questions You Might Ask In a Job Interview  

1. What skills and experiences would make an ideal candidate? This is a great open-ended question that will have the interviewer put his or her cards on the table and state exactly what the employer is looking for. If the interviewer mentions something you didn’t cover yet, now is your chance.

2. What is the single largest problem facing your staff and would I be in a position to help you solve this problem? This question not only shows that you are immediately thinking about how you can help the team, it also encourages the interviewer to envision you working at the position.

3. What have you enjoyed most about working here? This question allows the interviewer to connect with you on a more personal level, sharing his or her feelings. The answer will also give you unique insight into how happy people are with their jobs there. If the interviewer is struggling to come up with an answer to your question, it’s a big red flag.

4. What constitutes success at this position and this company? This question shows your interest in being successful there, and the answer will show you both how to get ahead and whether it is a good fit for you.

5. Do you have any hesitations about my qualifications? This is a bold question that will show how confident you are in your skills and abilities.  Consider it a soft-close to test the waters as to whether the employer is ready to buy.  Look for buying signals!

6. Do you offer continuing education and professional training? This is a great positioning question, showing that you are interested in expanding your knowledge and ultimately growing with the employer.

7. Can you tell me about the team I’ll be working with? Notice how the question is phrased; it assumes you will get the job. This question also tells you about the people you will interact with on a daily basis, so listen to the answer closely.

8. What can you tell me about your new products or plans for growth? This question should be customized for your particular needs. Do your homework on the employer’s site beforehand and mention a new product or service they’re launching to demonstrate your research and interest. The answer to the question will give you a good idea of where the employer is headed.

9. Who previously held this position? This seemingly straightforward question will tell you whether that person was promoted or fired or if he/she quit or retired. That, in turn, will provide a clue to whether: there’s a chance for advancement, employees are unhappy, the place is in turmoil, or the employer has workers around your age.

10. What is the next step in the process? This is the essential last question and one you should definitely ask. It shows that you’re interested in moving along in the process and invites the interviewer to tell you how many people are in the running for the position.

Source: Joe Konop – Next Avenue Contributor, article published on Forbes.com

This is a follow-up blog to a previous blog entitled “10 Common Interview Questions Answered” to be prepared for.

Dan Counts Founder Fairwinds RecruitingDan Counts, Founder of Fairwinds Recruiting (Twitter @FairwindsRcrtg) is a recruiter/coach for candidates and clients, specializing in the software and consulting industries for Enterprise Performance Management (Oracle/Hyperion), Business Intelligence, Human Capital Management, Data Science/Big Data, Cyber Risk Security, Sales, and Product Management. His hands-on positive style as an advisor to candidates and clients provides an environment for redefining the recruitment experience one placement at a time, resulting in better long-term matches. Residing in Monterey, CA near Silicon Valley, he works with boutique firms to large companies nationwide. In his free time he enjoys sailing, hiking/walking, woodworking and most recently home coffee roasting. You can check out his website at www.fairwindsrecruiting.com.

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The Power of the Post Interview Thank You Note. How to Seal the Deal!

Fairwinds Blog Arte of the Thank You Note

Writing a solid Thank You Note can be scary business for many candidates. Over the years I’ve had the opportunity to read tons of Thank You Notes and to provide insights for candidates as to the value of doing so. It’s one of those odd things. Add too much detail or make it too lengthy and you’ve lost your competitive edge, particularly if you’ve unintentionally showed the hiring manager a flaw in your writing skills. On the flipside, not writing a Thank You Note can be equally detrimental and could very well be the end of your candidacy.

 

A Thank You Note should be well thought out. Don’t rush it! The note serves as a strategic tool in adding another data point as to why you’re the right individual for the position. Below are some things to think about when crafting a Thank You Note after an interview.

 

It’s good form. It’s always good form to thank an interviewer for their time in discussing a position. That may seem obvious to most folks, but what many miss is the amount of time and effort on the other side of the fence to coordinate multiple schedules with the interview team to talk with you. Essentially they’re being asked to step away from their full-time job with all of its demands and deadlines, to chat with someone they don’t know. For consulting firms in particular this can be quite costly. That is, to remove a consultant from billable time for example. After all, time is money!

 

Make it meaty. Is not uncommon for candidates to CC me on their Thank You Notes that they send to hiring managers. It’s usually at this point in the interview I either smile (thumbs up) or cringe (BIG Thumbs down). The ones that are most impressive are those who have recapped the essence of their interview/conversation in written form.

 

This shows the hiring manager that you were attentive during the conversation, that you can recap conversations (typical in daily business life), and provides them with an ad-hoc writing sample. The poor thank you notes are those that simply say… “Thank you for your time and looking forward to next steps”. Further, this is also your opportunity to take what you’ve learned during the interview and map your skills to the position’s requirements, thereby showing the hiring manager that you are the best choice. For example, “…we discussed this…, that… and the other thing… and my skills here…, here… and over here… would be beneficial because of this… and that….”

 

The follow up answer maneuver. The other important reason for a Thank You Note is that it provides you with an opportunity to re-answer a question in an interview that perhaps you didn’t answer as well as you could have. For many of us we do our best thinking upon reflection. We all have said it to ourselves one time or another, “I shouldn’t have answered that question that way. I know better than that, what was I thinking?” A good thank you note gives you an opportunity to go back in time to restate your answer(s).

 

And don’t forget! Add a signature. Remember also that this is business correspondence and it should be inclusive of a signature at the bottom of your email. As you may recall from high school business communication class there’s the date, salutation, body, and signature. Nowadays in the world of Internet cyber communication, it’s equally important to sign your name and include your contact details as the closure to your Thank You Note. It looks and feels much more professional.

 

Never do this! Don’t send pictures of your family regardless of how great and friendly was the conversation with the interviewer. For instance your kids dressed in a costume or you on the beach. Don’t laugh! I’ve seen it.

 

 

Dan Counts Founder Fairwinds RecruitingDan Counts, Founder of Fairwinds Recruiting (Twitter @FairwindsRcrtg) is a recruiter/coach for candidates and clients, specializing in the software and consulting industries for Enterprise Performance Management (Oracle/Hyperion), Cloud ERP, Business Intelligence, Data Science/Big Data, Cyber Risk Security, Sales, and Product Management. His hands-on positive style as an advisor to candidates and clients provides an environment for redefining the recruitment experience one placement at a time, resulting in better long-term matches. Residing in Monterey, CA near Silicon Valley, he works with boutique firms to large companies nationwide. In his free time he enjoys sailing, hiking/walking, woodworking and most recently home coffee roasting. You can check out his website at www.fairwindsrecruiting.com.

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Don’t Roll the Dice in Selecting a Recruitment Partner [for Hiring Managers]

choosing-the-best-recuiter

During 13+ years of recruiting I occasionally find myself cold calling new prospective customers. During “first contact” I usually get a similar response about their experience in working with recruiters in the past. It’s rarely positive and they vary in form, a few examples include:

“We’ve had limited success in working with recruiters”,

“We have an internal-recruiter and have struggled with finding the right candidates”, and

“The past recruiter we used did not understand our business and charged us an exorbitant fee”.

In this post I’ll discuss ways in which hiring managers can qualify a potential recruiter to be a better match for your hiring goals. I’ve also included a a few links to other blogs/articles on the same topic towards the bottom that my be of interest.

 Professionalism

Perhaps one of the best ways to determine if a recruiter is qualified or not is to ask if they have a college degree. Just like when searching for a senior level candidate for a position, the first criteria typically is whether or not they have a college degree. For instance, one would not hire a CPA or a Financial Planning & Analyst without a college degree in Accounting or Finance. Similarly, a solid recruiter should have too and best to look for Business Administration, Management Information Systems, Accounting, Finance, etc.

 

Determine if they have real life “in-the-trenches” experience in your particular domain. If you are a consulting company or a software company, your best choices will be those recruiters who have worked in that field themselves and later moved into the recruiting industry. Of course the follow up question is, “Why?”

 

Are they experts in the “Competitive Landscape” that our business is in?

Another key characteristic to evaluate a recruiter is, do they have expertise within the industry that you are seeking quality candidates from? Even better if they have strong working knowledge about the strengths and weaknesses of your competitors, and best yet if they have knowledge of how your company is perceived in the marketplace as compared to others. In many cases knowing whom the client’s competitors are yields stronger potential candidates and better long-term fits. Many of those candidates will be passive candidates (those who are not actively on the market), will have years of experience in your space, can bring industry-related knowledge to your company and ramp up quickly.

 

Any recruiter worth their salt should be able to list fairly quickly the major competitors in your domain and formulate a search strategy for attracting candidates.

 

How long have they been recruiting in your domain. Are they a specialist?

As many domains mature, they become more popular. More and more people, good and bad, seek to benefit from that wave of growth. As a result, you have more people, candidates and recruiters competing for the same job opportunities. If a client is seeking junior level positions, a specialized recruiter may be overkill for their particular needs. However, if you’re seeking hard-to-find skills, it’s best look for a recruiter that has 5 to 10 years of experience in your domain. There’s an old Chinese proverb that says “He who chases two mice catches neither”. My experience shows this to be true. As a specialized recruiter focusing on only a few areas, I’ve been able to be much more successful for my clients and candidates than if I attempted to chase everything that came my way. 

Candidate and client recommendations

Every recruiter should be able to provide you with a list of references from candidates or clients they have worked with. Ideally, they should have references from clients that show ongoing multiple-year relationships. It’s not uncommon for a recruiter to work only on one or two searches with a given company and move on for numerous reasons. However, a recruiter that is considered an ongoing strategic partner and thought of as an extension of their client’s company, will be a sure bet. At Fairwinds we keep a list of references, both current and past, right on our website. All of which are verifiable via LinkedIn.com profiles.

 

Qualifying candidates beyond what’s on the resume

You wouldn’t believe it but is true! Sometimes jobseekers stretch the truth, ever so slightly, about their experiences throughout past positions. Just because a skill is listed on their resume does not mean they have detailed knowledge of that particular item. We see this quite extensively within the Information Technology and Consulting industries. It’s not uncommon for consultants to have been on projects where multiple software technologies are utilized such as Hyperion Financial Management or Hyperion Planning/Essbase. However, that does not mean the candidate has intimate skills with Calc Scripts, MaxLs, Visual Basic rules development, FDM vs. FDMEE, etc. One great way to determine whether a recruiter has experience in your area is to ask a few technical questions around the software tools and their methodology for prescreening candidates.

 

Effective communication style

Another vital qualification often overlooked by hiring companies is, “Is this the recruiter we want representing our company?” And “Do they possess the communication skills, follow-up, follow through, similar to the company values and culture that we seek in the people we want to hire?”

When a recruiter is working on a search for a given client, they become the first point of contact, which can make a lasting impression on potential new hires. Similar to Sales Development Representatives and Sales Account Executive, they become the initial face of the company.

In conclusion, the success of a recruiter working for a company lies in the ability of that particular company to qualify the right type of recruiter for their company, their culture, and their domain. It’s a two way street! The development of a strategic partnership and a trusted advisor, takes time.

Other articles/blogs on how to choose the right recuiter for your company:

How To Tell Good Recruiters From Bad Ones – Forbes

How to Find Recruiters in Your Niche – WSJ

Seven Deadly Sins of Resume Writing – Fairwinds Blog

Contingency Recruiter or In-House Recruiter? – Fairwinds Blog

 

ABOUT

Dan Counts President Fairwinds RecruitingDan Counts, Founder of Fairwinds Recruiting (Twitter @FairwindsRcrtg) is a recruiter/coach for candidates and clients, specializing in the software and consulting industries for Enterprise Performance Management (Oracle/Hyperion), Business Intelligence, Data Science/Big Data, Cyber Risk Security, Sales, and Product Management. His hands-on positive style as an advisor to candidates and clients provides an environment for redefining the recruitment experience one placement at a time, resulting in better long-term matches. Residing in Monterey, CA near Silicon Valley, he works with boutique firms to large companies nationwide. In his free time he enjoys sailing, hiking/walking, woodworking and most recently home coffee roasting. You can check out his website at www.fairwindsrecruiting.com.

 

 

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Seven Deadly Sins of Resume Writing, Tips to Fix

maze-1804499_960_720

 

As a seasoned recruiter I have the opportunity to see and review hundreds, if not thousands of resumes annually.  Good ones and bad ones fly across my desk… okay through my email inbox… but quite frequently.  The ones that tend to get my attention are those that are well thought-out, put together logically, organized, that don’t break any of the rules of resume writing.  There is no one rules fits all, but let’s face it, your [bctt tweet=””A resume is a representation of the product you are offering to a potential employer.”” username=”www.twitter.com/FairwindsRcrtg”]  Let’s look at a few of the seven deadly sins of resume writing and a few tips to remedy them.

 

1.  The use of “I”

The use of  “I” in resume writing is perhaps one of the biggest pet peeves of anybody who is evaluating a resume.  There is a general consensus that a resume should be written in third person.  The use of phrases such as “I managed the Western sales region” or “I closed business resulting in” are not acceptable.  It’s been said that people judge you by the words you use.  Your resume is an immediate indicator of one’s writing ability and therefore an indication of how effective you would be in communicating with colleagues. Let’s face it, a resume is a formal document and should be treated as such.

 

2.  Present tense versus past tense

I’m sure we’ve all been guilty of quickly updating our resume for a new job opportunity that we just heard about, and forgetting that the only position on your resume which should be in present tense, is your current position. That means that everything prior to your current position must be written in third person as well as past tense. For instance, “Sell application software and consulting services to Fortune 500 companies”, would be a good statement for a position you currently hold.  Whereas, “Sold Enterprise Software into named accounts in the Silicon Valley area” would be an example of a statement coming from a previous position.  Mixing and matching present tense and past tense is also not acceptable.

 

3.  Achievements and responsibilities are two different things!

All too often we see resumes in which the context does not differentiate between the achievements and responsibilities.  It’s important to show your responsibilities (duties) at a given position, however it’s equally important to show what your achievements were in conjunction with those responsibilities.  Employers want to know not only that you successfully managed your duties and responsibilities but also how you achieved expectations and accomplishments.  Here’s a quick example:

 

  • Responsible for the Western region of sales development for a nationwide software company focused within the ERP space.  Recruited, hired, managed, and drove sales from lead to close
  • Exceeded sales plan by 153%
  • Decreased cost of sales by 30% through these effective sales strategies
  • Increased prospective customer awareness in the Western region through direct and indirect sales activities such as…”

As you can see, it was easier for a hiring manager or recruiter to identify your areas of expertise and achievements and then match that to the position they are seeking to fill.

 

4.  Typos and grammatical errors

Next on the list is the improper use of grammar as well as typos throughout a resume.  In many cases I’ve experienced hiring managers passing on good candidates whose resume contained numerous grammatical errors and inconsistencies.  Incorrect use of periods, semicolons, colons, lack of proper capitalization, run-on sentences and the improper use of words such as “complementary” versus “complimentary” are a big no-no!

 

At first glance, this might seem a bit rough but remember, prospective hiring managers are judging you based the appearance of your resume.  It is your brand, your billboard, your advertisement, it is a reflection of you as a potential asset to their organization. First impressions do matter!

 

5.  Poor description of your current employer

Many hiring managers want to know the similarities of the employer you’re currently working for and how that relates to their organization.  For instance if you are a Customer Success Manager within the ERP cloud software domain it’s very likely that a hiring manager would recognize a company such as Intacct being similar to NetSuite (both ERP cloud solution providers).  However, if you work for a company that’s less known, you need to give a description of who and what that company does so that the hiring manager can quickly see the similarities of the work that you have done with that company and how it relates to what they need on their team.

 

I always advise candidates to add a one or two line description (in italics) of their current company.  Always best to error on the side of creating similarities in your work experience now and how that relates to a new potential employer.

 

6.  Poor formatting

Make it easy to read! If your resume is disorganized or the formatting is not appropriate it will be a challenge to read and therefore won’t get the attention that it deserves.  Further, don’t feel the need to put in every single detail of what you’ve done since high school.  There’s an old rule of thumb: never have a resume longer than one page.  That was true in the old days of physically mailing hard copies of resumes.  Nowadays in the computer world, it’s easier to have a longer resume that captures the essence of who you are.  The downside of that is going too far.  Resumes that are five to nine and even 10 pages are way outside of the accepted norm of two to three3 pages.

 

Always consider using white spaces, lines, indentions (and I should say consistent indentions) etc. that will make your resume stand out in the crowd.

 

7.  Cyber Friendly

Don’t forget that we live in a keyword search environment.  For your resume to come up to the surface whether you are submitting it to the candidate tracking system at a large company, a recruiter, or even have it posted on the website, consider the keywords that best describe your background.

I typically advise candidates to consider putting together a “Core Competencies” or “Area of Expertise” consisting of two to three columns at the top of the resume of keywords that describe your unique background and skills.  The section has two purposes.  One is to serve as a keyword/tag area to help search engines find your resume, and second is to provide a summary where hiring managers can quickly see your areas of expertise, which will cause them to want to learn more about your background and experiences in later sections of your resume.

 

As you can see, there are lots of things to think about when putting together a resume or even updating it.  At Fairwinds we offer a resume assessment and evaluation service which consists of an hour-long consultation, for a small nominal fee.  We discuss where you are in your career, where do you want to go, what your goals are, the ideal job that you are seeking, etc. to get a full understanding of what makes sense for you.  Further, we also provide a detailed written feedback of recommendations and suggestions to help during your next career transition.

 

In a follow-up blog I’ll discuss how to create a branding statement, more advantages of the core competency section, suggested resume formats, and how to align your LinkedIn profile in conjunction with your resume.

 

 

Dan Counts President Fairwinds RecruitingDan Counts, Founder of Fairwinds Recruiting (@FairwindsRcrtg) is a recruiter/coach for candidates and clients, specializing in the software consulting industries for Enterprise Performance Management (Oracle/Hyperion), Business Intelligence, Data Science, Cyber Risk Security, Sales, and Product Management. Residing in Monterey, CA near Silicon Valley, he works with boutique firms as well as large companies nationwide. Redefining the recruitment experience one placement at a time. You can check out his website at www.fairwindsrecruiting.com.

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Optimizing your LinkedIn Profile

Optimize LinkedIn Profile

Found this interesting free eBook about optimizing your LinkedIn Profile to be more visible. As we live in a keyword search world, it makes a lot of sense. For those of you that have completed a resume assessment with me, you’ll notice some similar trends.  https://lnkd.in/gwHZnRh


 

 Dan Counts President Fairwinds RecruitingDan Counts, Founder of Fairwinds Recruiting (@FairwindsRcrtg) is a recruiter/coach for candidates and clients, specializing in the software consulting industries for Enterprise Performance Management (Oracle/Hyperion), Business Intelligence, Cyber Risk Security, Sales, and Product Management. Residing in Monterey, CA near Silicon Valley, he works with boutique firms as well as large companies nationwide. Redefining the recruitment experience one placement at a time. You can check out his website at www.fairwindsrecruiting.com.

 

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10 Common Job Interview Questions: Answered

10 Common Interview Questions

 

A recent survey from job site Glassdoor.com concluded that more than one in five employees say one of their top resolutions for this year is finding a new job. The question is, are you ready for the interview?

According to Forbes.com, below is a list of some of the most common interview questions and some tips on how to prepare an answer for each:

Top 10 Interview Questions to be Prepared for:

1. Why Should I Hire You?  Do your homework on the company and the position you’re interviewing for. Your job is to illustrate why you are the most qualified candidate. Review the job description and qualifications very closely to identify the skills and knowledge that are critical to the position, and then be prepared to highlight experiences from your past that demonstrate those skills and knowledge.

 

2. Why Is There A Gap In Your Work History?  When answering this question, list the activities you’ve been doing during any period of unemployment. Employers understand that people lose their jobs and it’s not always easy to find a new one fast. Freelance projects, volunteer work or taking care of family members all let the interviewer know that time off was spent productively.

 

3. Tell Me One Thing You Would Change About Your Last Job.  Be prepared with an answer that doesn’t criticize a boss, colleague or situation. Making disparaging comments about former coworkers or supervisors will paint you in an unflattering light.

 

4. Tell Me About Yourself.  Keep your answer short and do not share personal or irrelevant information. Cover four topics: early years, education, work history, and recent career experience. Emphasize this last subject, but don’t waste your best points on it, you’ll have the chance to discuss this later in the conversation. And keep it clean – no weekend activities should be mentioned.

 

5. Explain A Complex Database To Your Eight-Year-Old Nephew.  Again, do your homework and know the industry. Explaining information security, financial applications, or just about anything in terms an eight-year-old can understand, shows the interviewer you have solid and adaptable understanding of what it is they do.

6. What Would The Person Who Likes You Least In The World Say About You?Highlight an aspect of your personality that could initially seem negative, but is ultimately a positive. An example? Impatience. Used incorrectly this can be bad in a workplace, but stressing timeliness and always driving home deadlines can build your esteem as a leader. And that’s a great thing to show off in an interview.

 

7. Tell Me About A Time When Old Solutions Didn’t Work.  To be prepared for this answer, you may want to explore new technologies or methods within your industry. The interviewer is trying to identify how knowledgeable you are in today’s work place and what new creative ideas you have to solving problems.

 

8. What’s The Biggest Risk You’ve Ever Taken?  Some roles require a high degree of tenacity and the ability to pick oneself up after getting knocked down. Providing examples of your willingness to take risks shows both your ability to fail and rebound, but also your ability to make risky or controversial moves that succeed.

 

9. Have You Ever Had A Supervisor Challenge A Decision?  Interviewers are looking for an answer that shows humility and the ability to take direction. Talk about the lessons you learned and not the situation itself or how wrong the supervisor was in challenging that decision.

 

10. Describe A Time When Your Team Did Not Agree.  This question is a way for employers to anticipate your future behavior by understanding how you behaved in critical situations and what you learned in the process. Clarify the situation succinctly and explain what specific action you took to come to a consensus with the group, then describe the result of that action.

 

Of course, in an interview you expect questions like the ones we’ve covered above, but you’ve got to be ready for anything. What if you were asked “Why are tennis balls fuzzy?”(question asked at a job interview for client manager at Xerox), “If you were a box of cereal, what would you be and why?” (for a job as an associate at Bed, Bath & Beyond), “What is the color of money?” (for a job as a project manager at the American Heart Association), or “If you could sing one song on “American Idol,” what would it be?” (for an event coordinator job at Red Frog Events)? Would you have an answer for this kind of oddball questions, or would you freeze like a deer in the headlights?

The sequel to this blog is Top 10 Job Interview Question You Should Ask

In that blog I approach the subject of the questions you, as a candidate, should ask in a job interview. You are interviewing the employer just as much as the employer is interviewing you. This is your opportunity to find out if this is an organization where you want to work.

Source: GlassDoor.com and Forbes.com

 

 Dan Counts President Fairwinds RecruitingDan Counts, Founder of Fairwinds Recruiting (@FairwindsRcrtg) is a recruiter/coach for candidates and clients, specializing in the software consulting industries for Enterprise Performance Management (Oracle/Hyperion), Business Intelligence, Cyber Risk Security, Sales, and Product Management. Residing in Monterey, CA near Silicon Valley, he works with boutique firms as well as large companies nationwide. Redefining the recruitment experience one placement at a time. You can check out his website at www.fairwindsrecruiting.com.

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Contingency Recruiter or In-House Recruiter?

There are not too many companies out there that have not yet worked with a recruiter, headhunter, or executive search firm in the past. The question is, should you consider hiring an in-house recruiter or a contingency recruiter for your company’s staffing needs?

A retained recruiter is paid for their services whether or not they are able to find candidates that you choose to hire, while a contingency recruiter is paid only if a candidate they present is hired.

Recruiters who work under the contingency model source and present candidates who are potentially qualified for your open assignment, with the expectation that they will collect a placement fee in case of a successful hire.

As compared to other types of employee sourcing and staffing, contingency recruiting is a popular choice with growing businesses because it requires a low up-front investment and limited time commitment on behalf of the business. Hiring a contingency recruiter is typically the most cost effective way to hire executives and fill those positions for which you have been unable to find the right candidate in the past. Additionally, a contingency recruiter is financially motivated, which means they will invest a great amount of time, energy and resources on hard-to-fill positions.

Contingency recruiters are often flexible with their commission and easier to negotiate with in terms of adjustments based on company requirements. However, negotiating a lower fee could also lower the priority for the recruiter, meaning that they would put less money and time into filling a job order. Many recruiters offer incentives for exclusive contracts, where the company agrees to work strictly with them on that specific position.

Contingency recruiters typically have a thorough understanding on the hiring process and how different types of companies in different industries operate. They are often known for their ability to attract passive candidates to meet an executive placement need, which widens the pool of high-quality candidates considerably.

Working with a staffing agency is a smart alternative to finding candidates, since having a productive employee is arguably the most important operating structure in a company. Contingency recruiters are often hired for important executive positions, positions that are hard to fill, or positions that an in-house corporate recruiter was unable to fill.

As part of due diligence while you make your final decision, give Fairwinds Recruiting a call to discuss our money-saving and efficient contingency recruiting services before you settle on an in-house/retained recruiter. Source: www.executivetrackers.com

 

 Dan Counts President Fairwinds RecruitingDan Counts, Founder of Fairwinds Recruiting (@FairwindsRcrtg) is a recruiter/coach for candidates and clients, specializing in the software consulting industries for Enterprise Performance Management (Oracle/Hyperion), Business Intelligence, Cyber Risk Security, Sales, and Product Management. Residing in Monterey, CA near Silicon Valley, he works with boutique firms as well as large companies nationwide. Redefining the recruitment experience one placement at a time. You can check out his website at www.fairwindsrecruiting.com.

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