Questions and Answers with Career Expert Susan Guarneri
Please note: On a somewhat infrequent basis, Quintessential Careers asks noted career experts five questions related to their expertise and publishes the interview in the current issue of QuintZine, our career e-newsletter. Those interviews are archived here for your convenience.
Susan Guarneri is the Career Assessment Goddess.
|ica” color=”black” size=”+4″>Q:||What do you feel is the most exciting or hopeful trend in job-hunting?|
|ica” color=”black” size=”+4″>A:|| Three powerful trends intersect in today’s job-hunting dynamics:
|ica” color=”black” size=”+4″>Q:||How can job-seekers achieve success and stand out from the crowd in such a competitive market?|
|ica” color=”black” size=”+4″>A:|| There’s no one magic formula. But there are some common-sense factors that add up to self-marketing success:
|ica” color=”black” size=”+4″>Q:||What’s the best way for job-seekers to figure out what career will give them the greatest happiness? What techniques beyond assessments do you advise for really getting at a client’s career passion?|
|ica” color=”black” size=”+4″>A:|| Career happiness requires a good match with four essential areas:
These are the building blocks for solid career change. They can be determined through methods such as self-reflection, discussion with family and friends, information interviewing with people in various occupations, journaling, job shadowing, and “trying out” different kinds of jobs or volunteering.
These methods, combined with proven career assessments in all four of these areas and career counseling/coaching, can aid in self-exploration, career research and discovery, decision-making, accountability, and decisive action toward a “dream job” goal. But be aware that not all career assessments are equally valid; in fact, many online career assessments have nebulous validity and reliability, yet are promoted as providing career matches based on just one career test.
A professional career counselor or certified career coach should be able to determine which career assessments (in the four building-block areas above) are most suitable for you to take. Some may be objective, formal assessments such as the Myers-Briggs Temperament Indicator, while others may be more subjective assessments designed with open-ended questions and creative techniques.
|ica” color=”black” size=”+4″>Q:||There’s a lot of talk among recruiters that the resume is dead. They talk of resumes being overtaken by standardized profile forms on job boards, company web sites, and even social networking sites. What’s your take? Is the resume dead, on life support, or still vital? What are its best uses these days?|
|ica” color=”black” size=”+4″>A:|| Self-marketing success requires three essential elements:
Resumes have been the primary tool for self-marketing in the past. Whether they will continue to serve that function in the future depends largely on:
Some professions welcome creative approaches, often involving new technology, while others seem to push toward standardization of online application forms. Similarly, many highly desirable candidates promote themselves to selective target audiences and use distinctive approaches, while other candidates default to generic resumes hoping to catch anyone’s eye. Unfortunately, the path of least effort for many candidates is the generic resume, which is ironically the least effective in meeting the three self-marketing essentials.
Whatever the means of self-marketing (resume, bio, online profile, or web portfolio), best practices indicate that the type chosen needs to be appropriate to the target audience (profession and industry) and the candidate, and it needs to be effective in conveying a message of value and distinction.
|ica” color=”black” size=”+4″>Q:||Whatever the status of the resume, it seems that online profiles in various forms will grow in importance. What’s the best way to leverage resumes and profiles within new strategies such as personal branding and social networking?|
|ica” color=”black” size=”+4″>A:|| Whether you choose to use a resume or online profile or both, remember the three essentials of self-marketing success (stated above). Distinguish yourself from the vast majority of resumes and online profiles that do not appeal to any target audience, contain insipid or non-existent messages of value, and rely on the “throw-it-against-the-wall-and-see-what-sticks” mentality.
Even a standardized online application can stand out from the crowd through the content you choose to input. For example, the content can:
Known as the Career Assessment Goddess, Susan Guarneri has years of experience in career-development consulting, management development, team building, training, and workforce development. She is the co-author of Job Search Bloopers: Every Mistake You Can Make on the Road to Career Suicide and How to Avoid Them (Career Press, 2008). Susan has attained 13 careers-industry certifications, including the prestigious Master Resume Writer Lifetime Achievement Award. She is the only National Certified Career Counselor worldwide who is also certified as a Personal Branding Strategist and Online Identity Management Strategist. Her articles and quotes have appeared in The Wall Street Journal, The Princeton Business Journal, The Atlanta Journal Constitution, New Jersey News, The Career Planning and Adult Development Journal, along with CareerBuilder.com, Monster.com, and CareerJournal.com.
Check out all our interview with career experts in Quintessential Answers: Q&A’s with Career & College Experts.
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