Q. How is your process different from the web solutions or interview prep books I’ve seen?
A. There are a lot of folks out there who can give you a list of questions and their so-called “best” answers to them. The fact is they’ll give them to you and anyone else who wants to buy them. While studying the questions and answers before an interview may seem helpful, in today’s job market, employers hire real people–not robots or parrots or puppets who recite what they are told to say. One of the main causes of unsuccessful interviews is a lack of authenticity. Employers are looking to get to know you–the unique, individual you. Using the interview-in-a-box format will never allow you to be “you.” You have just a few seconds to make a connection with the interviewer and you want to make that first impression the best you can. Only YOU can know your answers and present you as the right candidate for the job. My process helps you uncover and express, in simple terms, who you are and why you’re the best candidate for the job you seek.
Q. What about working with an executive recruiter?
A. There are several differences between working with me and working with an executive recruiter. First and foremost, I work only for you. I have your interests front and center at all times. Executive recruiters are hired by employers/companies to fill specific jobs, usually at a relatively senior management level, for a fee paid by the company. They send a number of candidates to the company and they earn their fee only when one of their candidates is hired.
I don’t have any jobs to offer you but my agenda is your agenda—to get you hired. I work with you to customize your job search and prepare you to get hired in a job where you will thrive. As part of that you-focused process, we identify what you are looking for in your next position and for the long term. We consider what jobs best showcase your strengths and skill sets and meet your interests and values. We evaluate whether the work environment is conducive to your success.
My process is designed to get to know you and your experiences so that together we can prepare you, and only you, to look for the right opportunity and then stand out in the interview as the right person for the position.
Q. What sets you apart as a career coach?
A. I bring to my coaching 25+ years of experience as a business executive and a lawyer in corporate America, where, among other things, I have interviewed hundreds of people for different kinds of jobs. Unlike many career coaches, I understand what it takes to thrive in today’s work world from my own experience as a senior level manager responsible for creating and implementing policies to recruit, train and retain the best and the brightest. In addition, I have served as a community leader, advocate and initiator of change in not-for-profit organizations so I know what it takes to succeed in that world as well.
I also know what it’s like to be in transition. I have changed jobs and careers a number of times. I know the sometimes disconcerting feeling that comes with being in-between positions and not knowing what’s next. I know first-hand how it feels to take action and finally do something you truly love.
I also have developed an expertise that is unique among coaches, a specialty in the area of understanding personality type, a factor generally recognized as a strong indicator of success in the workplace. When you work at a job where you are utilizing your in-born strengths, you are using all of your energy and focus to perform the job. When, however, you are doing a job that is not consistent with your internal wiring—how you look at the world, how you prefer to function, how you like to structure your time, your focus will be diverted; you’ll spend more time finding ways to accommodate for the challenges that arise and you’ll experience higher levels of stress and burn-out. Understanding your personality type provides you with the information you need to choose a job that is a better fit.
Q. What do you mean by “stuck”?
A. Stuck is a something that most of us have felt at some point in our lives. Being stuck keeps us from moving forward, from taking the next step. When we are stuck we often feel overwhelmed and frustrated. At those times, we generally can only focus on the mistakes that we’ve made or the wrongs that have been done to us. Our “gremlins”—those nasty things that take away our power, our confidence and our sense of who we are, what we want and what we can do, step to the fore and get in our way. When we are stuck, our energy, motivations and ability to focus on what’s next are at a low point. Taking that first step to refocus on our strengths, skills, and interests is the best way I know to get out of that funk so that we can create the balanced life we want at work and at home—to get unstuck means being able to free up and channel our energies more productively.
Q. What is the “silent factor”?
A. The “silent factor” is what I call our “behavioral DNA”, the key to who we inherently are and how it translates into what we need to be happy in our life. It is our personality type, our inborn way of approaching and interacting with the world. Years and years of research have shown that when you live and work in a manner that is consistent with who you are, you’ll be more content, more competent and more successful. The more you live and work in ways that are inconsistent with your personality type, the more stressed and unsatisfied you’ll feel.
I call this the “silent factor” because it is hard-wired into who we are. Often we don’t even know that it exists or the powerful impact it has on almost everything we do—how we are energized; how we prefer to interact with the world; what types of information we generally find meaningful and how we prefer to gather that information; how we prefer to make decisions and what’s important to us in that process; how we like to communicate and how we need to be communicated with; what stresses us and how to best deal with that or, even better, nip it in the bud; and how we prefer to live our lives. Bottom line, the “silent factor,” or our “behavioral DNA,” defines our personality type and what we need to feel confident, effective and satisfied in our lives. This is a critical factor in our ability to succeed especially in the workplace.
Q. How do we get to my “behavioral DNA”?
A. To help you get a better understanding of what makes you “tick,” the things that motivate you and that areas you might like to pursue, I’ve created and use a number of tools including G.E.M.S.™—A Guide to Enhancing and Maximizing Your Strengths™. G.E.M.S. is my proprietary personality type self-assessment tool. It is based on years of research and my experiences in the business world. G.E.M.S. provides my clients with in-depth insight about their “behavioral DNA” and what’s naturally important to them both at work and for their personal satisfaction. It offers not only a reality check about who you are and what you need to be happy, but it also gives us valuable information we can use to set career and personal goals and ways to stay on track to reach them.
Q. How is G.E.M.S. different than other standard personality tests?
A. There are many wonderful personality assessment tools available today and I am qualified to give a number of them. That said, my clients often have found that these tools, while providing a ton of information, do not do so in a readily useable or practical way. G.E.M.S. is an accessible and, I believe, enjoyable tool to take. It is delivered online, takes about 20 minutes to complete and gives you memorable and useful information that you can readily apply in your life. In addition, through our debriefing process after you complete G.E.M.S., we develop concrete tools and strategies that you can remember and put into effect immediately. G.E.M.S. delivers enough information to be helpful but is not overwhelming. It is especially effective in workshop settings because its results are easy to understand and apply.
Q. I know first-hand that career-success depends on playing corporate politics and ass-kissing – how can your coaching help?
A. It’s not just about ass-kissing and politics. It’s about understanding yourself and others and developing tools and skills to manage your career. I have been there. I understand corporate cultures and know how to survive and thrive in them. 25+ years of in-the-trenches experience with different industries and jobs comes in handy as a backdrop to helping you to develop your strategies to be successful in your workplace. Understanding your company’s politics is an art but the first step is to understand yourself and how you fit in. Then, I will help you develop and become facile with the tools you need to create the results you want.