It was just before Halloween in 2003. I was in my office, getting ready for the day. I loved my job, and I loved the company I did it for.
Around 8:30 am my phone rang. It was my boss. We were going to have a company-wide RIF, and I was a member of the group of people being "separated."
OK - I was laid off.
After over 16 years of award-winning performance and many valuable contributions.
Nope, didn't see that coming. Oh well. It was true, and I had to deal with it.
Worse yet, I had to learn how to look for a job again. 1984 was the last time period that I had to intentionally look. Back then, people were seeing somewhere around 500-700 marketing messages per day.
Looking for a job was pretty easy then - you found an ad in the local paper, and you typed up a copy of your resume, and you mailed it in. Companies only received about 10-12 resumes back then. It was a fairly easy process to go through them and decide whom to interview.
Contrast that with 2003. People were now being shown over 3,300 marketing messages per day.
Sometime before 2003 (around 1995 actually), the internet had become a bit more commercially viable. By 2003, the internet was a very busy place...
How do you capture attention in this day and age?
I had no idea.
Oh - by the way - people are being bombarded by over 10,000 marketing messages today. To be found, you really have to resonate.
Needless to say I was frustrated, and didn't know how to go about looking for a job back then. I knew I had to do something. So I started attending "networking meetings." Lot's of them. I also attended one very good, well-known networking ministry in the northwest suburbs of Chicago, where I live. It was led by a very good guy. Bob was a former VP of HR for a major airplane manufacturer. I started attending their meetings, then asked if I could help serve the attendees better by joining the core team. I was accepted with open arms by the group of leaders.
This group used to host a meeting every week, with speakers that had different perspectives on job search. I took meticulous notes, and asked tons of questions. Over the next 14 years, I learned a LOT about the process of job search.
I soon began to help other friends outside the ministry, and wrote a long email to a friend of a friend that was out looking for a job. That email grew over the next 8 years, until I finally decided to write a book about job search. It's now for sale in my e-shop.
In compelling fashion.
1) I focus on senior leaders because there aren't very many chairs in the organization the higher up you go. You need to know and appreciate the unique contributions you've made over the course of your career. Then you need to find a way to tell that story so that it resonates with an audience. Quickly.
2) I also work with small-to-medium sized businesses looking to hire a new person or two. I take the knowledge and experience I have gained over the last 20 years and put it on the other side of the table. I have also contracted with a number of partners that provide HR services a la carte. Background checks of all sorts. Personality profiling so you hire the best possible person. Interview questions. An HR Handbook (Illinois version). We'll help you write your job descriptions. We'll even sit with you on the interview team if you'd like. An entire resource library that will prepare you for the process. Offer and Separation letter templates. More.
3) The newest set of services we provide are for newly-funded startups. These folks need help in designing and telling their stories as well. Again - we work with an amazing set of partners that put together an outstanding set of materials that communicate the values and missions of the organization. Video assets that include interviews and testimonials. Success stories (case studies). LinkedIn presences that convert. Compelling and powerful short stories to relate. "Done for you" marketing services such as posting to your social profiles for you.
You've just been fired or laid off. The last time you had to look for a position was over 10 years ago.
You are tired of your current position, and need something new. You're not sure how to go about it.
You've been working for the same company for over 20 years, and you need help with your search.
You are a small/medium sized business, and you need to hire a new person (or a few new people).
You just received a Series A, B, or C round, and you need help with your launch messaging.
You want to retire and you hope to land a board seat.
You want to launch a new service offering at your company, and need to show you're the expert.
You're transitioning from self-employment to working for someone else.
You need help interviewing.
Tom P - CFO at a manufacturing company