Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Fun. Recruiting! Recruiting advice from the album "Some Nights"

Another one of my musical themed blogs.  Now, some of my loyal readers are probably thinking...”Wow, Jeff listens to pop music” instead of my normal hard rock or metal....well yeah, I like a little pop every now and again :)

I won’t get into too much of an overview of the band, because by now Fun. is one of the biggest new bands around and their album “Some Nights” is REALLY popular.  Anyway...I love it and honestly find it to be really inspiring.  It’s a great, album and if you give it a listen...I think you’ll find some job search/career inspiration too.  With that...Fun. Recruiting Advice:

Give me a second I need to get my story straight - We Are Young

Ok, simple lesson here...before you go on an interview make sure you are prepared. You’d be shocked at how many candidates don’t prep and bomb the interview.  Don’t be that guy.

Ten years of this, I’m not sure anyone understands - Some Nights

I love this line, and think it’s pretty relevant to a lot of people.  Sometimes you feel like no one really understands the work you do.  That sucks.  Don’t fall into this trap.  Take time to celebrate your work and make sure that you’re not the only one who appreciates your work.

Why don’t we break the rules already?  Some Nights of my favorite topics. Rules are in place for a reason, gotta follow them.  However, sometimes it’s better to ask for forgiveness than permission.  So, every now and again break a rule.  Get shit done and clean up the broken glass later. Got it?

If you’re lost and alone or you’re sinking like a stone...carry on - Carry On

Yeah, so if you ever find yourself feeling like this at work?  Carry on out to a new job.  Seriously, life is too short to be miserable and getting depressed at work.  If you’re feeling lost and alone...get a new job.

We are shining stars, we are invincible, we are who we are - Carry On

No real recruiting lesson here but this makes me think of some of the teams I’ve managed, especially the one I manage now.  Superstars think they can do anything and get any task, if you’re as good as you think you’re invincible.

For once I feel like I belong - Why Am I The One

This is really about workplace culture.  When you find a place that really truly fits your personality.....stick with it.  Great cultures are hard to find and you should cherish your time working somewhere with a great culture.

Why can’t you see that no one is going to save us - Stars

Probably my favorite lyric for this blog.  Lets face it, for your are the only person that has responsibility for your path.  You’ve got to always be thinking about #1 and making sure that you’re happy and enjoying what you do.

That’s it this week...I’ve been out in California getting to learn my new role so it’s been a little busy.  Lots of more content soon.  Good luck out there!

Monday, April 8, 2013

Spring cleaning and your career

With this whole moving to California thing I’ve been doing a lot of cleaning and getting ready for the move.  I was walking around outside today and was totally shocked at how beautiful it of those epic spring days.  Anyway, the nice weather and cleaning really got me thinking about how you can apply a little spring cleaning to your career.  With that, here are a few thoughts on cleaning up your career:

Get a new job - Duh...what better way to clean things up than to get a new job and start fresh.  This is probably the most dramatic move right?  But hey, sometimes you’ve got to do the dramatic

Switch roles or take on a new project - Sometimes it doesn’t always make sense to get a new job...for whatever reason.  So, switch roles or find a new project.  There are lots of ways to refresh your career and a new challenge might be just the right idea.

Hire an intern - That’s right, no way to get things cleaned up and refreshed than to hire an intern.  This will make you responsible for someone else and force you to come up with cool work for them to do while they intern for you.

Take a class - You can never lose by getting more education.  I’m not saying you should go get your PhD or anything...but picking up a class or two and learning some new skills is a great way to clean up your career.

Volunteer somewhere - You didn’t think I’d say this did you?  Well, a GREAT way to clean up your career is to start volunteering and exploring your passion.  For a lot of us, work is work...and that sucks.  If you can find a volunteer gig or opportunity to help a group you're passionate about you may find it evolves into a new career path....and, it will feel great.

Get a new mentor - Mentors are some of the most important people in your life.  If you don’t have  a mentor, get one...if you don’t have three or four mentors....get a few more.  You’ll find great mentors can help steer you to greater things in your career.  Now...go get them now!

That’s it for today, I’ll try to write more later but the posts might be kind of sporadic until I get out to the Bay Area...but, I am going to be doing a few guest posts for Brazen Careerist so when those go live I’ll make sure to post links.

Enjoy the rest of the week!

Thursday, April 4, 2013

My internship lessons....almost twenty years later

Before I get into this weeks topic, big news on my side of things.  I’ve decided to move out to California and rejoin Google.  Really excited about the opportunity and looking forward to the challenge.  Here I come Silicon Valley!

Now to the topic at hand...internships.  Lots of bloggers and talking heads will tell you the most important thing about an internship is the “experience” and they are right...however, one thing they miss is the long term importance of reflecting on that experience you gained.  Sounds crazy right?  Not really, I finished my first internship almost twenty years ago and there are still HUGE lessons I learned then which help me today.

For those who don’t know, I started my career in politics (long story) and my first internship was in Concord NH as a lobbyist/legislative assistant at the NH Lodging and Restaurant Association.  My boss was amazing and is someone who although we don’t connect often who I still respect and admire.  Anyway, almost twenty years later here are a few lessons from my first internship:

Be ready for anything - This might be the best part of internship...they constantly change.  On my first day I found out that someone had left the team and I’d have to take on more responsibility.  DAY ONE!  It was a great chance to step up and I took it.

Work hard - I don’t think I’ve ever worked harder than during this internship.  I loved it.  It felt so good to be actually working and getting things done.  It’s something that’ really stuck with me and I still credit my days at the the NHLRA for it.

First work lessons - There are some lessons you can only learn on the job.  Many of those came from my first internship (insert don’t drink on Tuesday night jokes here).  The great thing about internships is you’re there to learn and you’re expected to learn these lessons the hard way.

First references - So the experience is the best part of the internship but this is the most valuable.  Your first reference is worth its weight in gold.  Seriously, I can’t overstate this point.  That first reference can make or break your first job experience.  Do well and you’ll be set.

Ok, that’s it this week but I thought it was a great topic as folks are starting to find internships for the summer and they are a huge springboard for your career and will give back for years.

More soon, life is a little crazy with my move but I’ll keep writing!