Thursday, January 28, 2010

Behavior Interview Questions

OK, you've made it past the initial resume screening and now have an interview. It could be in person or on the phone. (More and more interviews are on the phone now, and I've heard of Skype interviews also - better dress up for that one!)

The point of an interview is to explore two main things:

1) Do you really know what you're doing, or "is that stuff on the resume real?" There's a lot of BS in some resumes and interviewers will ask pointed questions to determine if you actually have the skills and experience you claim to have.

Questions about this could be:

* Tell me about this accomplishment. How did you do it?
* Why did you decide to go into this field?
* How did you make the transition from this job to the next?
* What is your greatest strength?
* How do you manage people?
* Tell me about a project you managed/a plan you developed and implemented/a team you worked on/a goal you achieved.

Be prepared with stories about what you've done in the past, to illustrate a key message you want to deliver about the reasons you are successful, the skills you have and want to use again, the way you work with others, and the value you will bring to your next employer.

2) Will you be the "right fit" for our culture and can you really help us reach our company goals? Interviewers want to know how you think, how you approach and solve problems, and your attitudes toward colleagues and customers - internal and external.

Questions about this will focus on your behavior and attitudes, and attempt to discover your values and work ethic. Sample questions could be:

* Here's a scenario or problem we face at this organization...Tell me how you would go about dealing with it.
* Tell me about your greatest challenge at work and how you addressed it successfully.
* How would you deal with someone on your team who isn't pulling their weight?
* What failures have you had and how did you deal with them?
* Tell me what you would do in your first 90 days here and why.
* What do you like to do in your off-time and why?

For the questions that concern how you would work at the company, take your time answering the questions. It's OK to give it some thought. You can prepare somewhat by reading as much as you can about the company to understand the business and the challenges it might face. Also, thoroughly go over each part of the job description to understand exactly what is in the job and what you might be called on to do. Identify what you've done in past jobs that is similar to what is required in the new job, so you can refer to that experience VERY briefly (e.g. "When I was at XYZ, I had a similar situation. Based on that, here's how I would approach this scenario:...").

To prepare for questions related to past jobs,
come up with stories in these categories. Construct the stories to illustrate the key points you want to make about your abilities, talents, skills, attitudes, and work style.

If you are asked the question about hobbies, it shows that the interviewer is aware that how you spend your off-time is indicative of your core personality and underlying talents. We tend to pursue things as hobbies based on what feels good and fun, what comes naturally. That usually means we'll contribute a LOT of value when we do similar things at work.

A great example of this is Captain Sullenberger who successfully landed the engine-less airplane in the Hudson River. His hobby is flying glider planes. You couldn't ask for a better person to land a "glider jetliner."

More examples: People who play team sports as a hobby - softball, basketball, crew - will work well in a team and probably do very well in client-facing jobs because they are social by nature. Someone who runs marathons can usually be counted on to stick with jobs until they are completed no matter the obstacles. A cook will be pretty creative and seek ideas and inspiration from others, and have the ability to synthesize information into something new. I think you get the idea.

Be prepared to draw a correlation between what you do off-time and how it can translate into why you would be an excellent part of the new company.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Effective Support for Haiti

I have given to several requests for funds to help people hurt by the devastating earthquake in Haiti. Here's where and why: because it's a Twitter- and Facebook-powered fundraising mechanism, showing how social media can be used as another method for inviting people to be part of making the world a better place. Their charity partner in Haiti is faith-based, if that matters to you.

Red Cross: because President Obama sent me an e-mail with a direct link to make a donation to a group that does incredible work everywhere, making sure necessities are there where and when people need them. Water, medical supplies, food, tents - all the things I can't imagine doing without.

Share Our Strength: because they are getting food directly to people on the ground, through their local connections. With its focus on children, SOS speaks to my heart.

You CAN do something about the horrors in Haiti and be sure your money is going where it is intended, when you give to a reputable group about whose work you know something.

Employer Encourages Targeting Your Search

On a recent job posting, I saw the employer included this at the end:

We Recommend

* Candidates develop a thorough understanding of Goldstar’s business before applying.
* Candidates read this job description carefully, ask questions if necessary, and honestly assess their fit and interest before applying.
* Candidates devote thought before applying to the specific ways in which they will be very well suited to this role.

Also, they added a last desired qualification:

Passionate about live entertainment: theater, music, comedy and sports

The nature of their business is selling half-price tickets, and the job is in the marketing department.

I give you this example to show that I'm not just making this stuff up when I say it's more effective to target your search. This is what employers want, too! They are inundated by resumes, so how are they going to decide who to interview? Based on who:

1) Most closely meets their qualifications
2) Shows their familiarity with the company and passion for the work
3) Demonstrates how their past matches the company's needs and will further the company's goals

It can pay off when you devote time and thought to decide what jobs you most qualify for and are passionate about, make the case to yourself about how you match the qualifications, and construct a compelling cover letter.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

How to Get Interviews - FAQ #10

The question is: I’ve sent out so many resumes and never get an interview. What can I do differently? While there is never a guarantee that you will get an interview, people who do these things have a much better track record of getting interviews:

* Apply only for jobs for which you are qualified, using the job posting as your guide.

* Write and send targeted cover letters, specific to the job and company.

* Use clear, simple language; look on line for Strunk & White's wonderful, easy to understand guidance on plain writing.

* Research the company and include references to its mission in your cover letter.

* Use language from the job description in your letter; there are key words in there that they want to see in your materials.

* In two short paragraphs, match your expertise, experience and skills to the requirements listed in the job description.

* Tell a story about how you used your skills and expertise to produce a clear result for an employer, and say that this is the kind of work you would do for the company if they hired you.

* Express enthusiasm for working for the company so they know you want this job and this company.

* Flatter the company by telling them how important their work to "xyz" is to their industry, to the world, to the community - something.

* Include your contact information in the last paragraph of the letter, as well as on your resume.

* Make your cover letter 1 page and never more than 1 and a half pages.

* Get the name of the person to whom the resume is going and address the cover letter to them.

* Ask someone to review your letter and tell you if it makes a compelling case for you. If not, change it.

* PROOFREAD your cover letter and resume, and then ask someone else to proofread it.

* Make sure your resume contains measurable accomplishments that demonstrate the impact of your work.

* Put in only as much detail on your resume as you need to explain what you did and the impact of your efforts; it's GREAT if the reader has questions! That's what an interview is for.

* Call after you've sent your materials to make sure they arrived and say "you wondered if you could answer any questions now."

* Find a contact inside the company to pull your resume to the top of the pile.

Listing Degrees After Your Name

I just got a question from a woman about whether to add "PMP" after her name. She asked specifically about LinkedIn. The question also is relevant to resumes.

Here's part of my answer: You can add it to your name, but I don't think it adds too much and could result in people pigeon-holing you as a Project Manager.

Generally speaking, adding degrees after your name is useful when you want to convey via shorthand that you are extremely well-qualified and trained for a position that requires the degree or uses the associated skills. If that's what you're going for, by all means add the degree.

I find that usually it's PhDs, MDs, JDs, MSWs who add those degrees because they imply a profession of some sort. Sometimes MPH (Masters of Public Health) or MFA (Masters of Fine Art) - those are often "terminal" degrees, meaning they qualify for a profession without having to go on to a doctorate. Those people usually are looking for work in that field, so being defined by their degree is exactly what they want.

Otherwise, most holders of Masters degrees don't list it next to their name. Listing an MBA is especially frowned upon, for reasons that are unclear to me; I just believe recruiters would laugh if they saw someone's name with "MBA" next to it. That kind of education is to be discovered in the education section - which gives people a reason to scroll down, which makes them glance at your experience, too.

You can add special certifications to the "Specialties" section on LinkedIn, and you can have a "CERTIFICATIONS" section on your resume. This makes clear that your degree, licensure or certification is one of your qualifications, rather than the defining one.

There are exceptions to this, of course. If you want to do project management exclusively, then definitely list PMP. If you have a special license, you can put that after your name - if you are looking for work in that field. For one thing, people outside the field won't understand the initials. For example, Registered Dietitians looking for work in that field would put "RD" after their name. Does anyone outside of food service know what "RD" means, though?

I've also seen people put degrees on their business cards when networking. This makes a certain sense because you only have this small piece of paper on which to make critical points. It's the only place I've seen "NAME NAME, MBA" where it's looked normal and not cringe-inducing.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Why LinkedIn? FAQ #7

Several people have asked "Does it really matter if I have a LinkedIn profile? It seems like a repetition of my resume. Do employers even look at it?"

Yes, it really matters to have a LinkedIn profile. And the best profiles are factually the same as your resume. More and more, employers DO check your LinkedIn profile, and they notice if there is a big difference. That's not a good thing. Employers want consistency.

I know someone who got a job interview and then didn't quite know what to say when the interviewer said "I checked out your LinkedIn profile and it contained very different information from your resume. Can you explain that?" She did her best to explain that she targeted her resume to that specific job. However, she didn't get a call for a second interview. We think it's because of the lack of consistency between her resume and LinkedIn profile.

Here are some suggestions for how to make the most of your LinkedIn profile.

1. I recommend to people that the resume contain more detail than the LinkedIn profile. A great LinkedIn profile will contain the same jobs you list in the resume, with the same dates on both, and it will have two or three bullets listing projects or duties and their measurable impact. The bullets need to tell a quick story for each position. Focus on the most recent jobs.

2. Come up with a meaningful tag line for yourself - not your job title. Your description needs to tell the story of the challenges you love to solve and where you add value. It is the umbrella under which the rest of your profile falls. If you know of key words that are meaningful to potential employers, include one or more of them in that title. For example, one person says she is a "High-Impact Operations Leader and Change Agent" while another says "Executive Management Consulting: Solving the most crucial business technical problems with ERP solutions on SAP platform."

3. Have a photograph that conveys the image you want a potential employer to see. Whether you look buttoned-up, artsy, or casual, always use a head-only shot. The photos are too small for someone to see who you are if you put in a full body shot. And have the photo be of you alone. A plain background is great.

4. When doing a summary, make sure it captures your "core value proposition" - what you do really well, what you want to do again, and the kind of impact you have had. Use measures to indicate the scope of your experience and results. Key words are very useful here, and as my colleague Joshua Waldman suggests, use NOUNS.

5. "Specialties" is a place to highlight specific skills and areas of expertise, and make sure your profile shows up on searches in LinkedIn that use certain key words. List them using bullets or dashes/hyphens before them. Put them in a list, not a paragraph. Again, list things you love to do, are good at and want to do again. For example, you can say

• Leadership and team building
• People development
• Supply chain management
• Sales and operations planning


- Strategy/business case development
- Full life-cycle technical development
- SAP R/3, ECC6.0


* Program and Policy Development
* Grantmaking and Resource Development

6. Do your homework! I recommend doing sample searches with your key words to see what comes up. I also recommend looking at job postings on LinkedIn to see what key words are used in the postings of jobs you like. Use those key words in your Summary and Specialties list.

7. Draft your LinkedIn profile in a Word document BEFORE you start changing your profile. For one thing, you're probably going to make numerous changes and it's less cumbersome to do it in a word processing program. Also, every update you make to your profile shows up as information on your network's "updates." You can look very disorganized, which is not a good thing. It's good to update your status every week, to stay on people's radar. You just don't want constant profile updates to be the reason people see your name.

There are some great resources on-line regarding what to put on your LinkedIn profile. Here's one at You also can search for LinkedIn Profile tips and a bunch of resources come up, including at itself.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

The Secret to Great Cover Letters

The secret to cover letters is to make them as targeted as possible to the employer you are looking at. Two things to focus on:

1) why you want to work there - the kind of work it is, the wonderful things about the place, the challenges of the job that appeal to you

2) what value you will provide them - your experience that matches what they want, how your skills allow you to reach their goals

Pick up and use some language from the job description and website. It's a great way to let them know you did your homework, and to make sure you are getting the right key words.

Monday, January 18, 2010

FAQ #1: Specificity Breeds Success

The most frequently asked question I get is this:

Why do you recommend being specific about the job I want? Many people tell me I should be more general.

Being specific about the job you want allows you to look more effectively at the job marketplace, and it enables other people to help you. You're going to have to get specific sometime, so why not do it consciously?

You know all about how a job hunt is like a trip somewhere. When you know where you're going, it's much easier to map out a route to get there. The challenge is deciding where you are going. Many people find it difficult to commit to a specific goal. The biggest fear is that they'll exclude themselves from too many possibilities.

My observation is that the job search itself forces you to whittle down your focus. Think about it: when you say "I just want a job, any job," don't you get suggestions you immediately reject? I've heard that from many people, yet when I suggest that they apply at a bookstore or to do sales, they come back with "but I can't do that" or "I don't want to do that." They are narrowing the search and getting more specific even though they didn't consciously decide to do that.

Here are three great reasons to get specific:

Specificity allows me to identify jobs for which I am suited and want to apply.
Targeted applications are much more effective than scattershot applications. There are many jobs out there yet there are only a few for which you are qualified and in which you are interested. It's a waste of time to apply for anything other than jobs well-matched to your background and abilities.

I read the other day that a major problem with modern job search is that so many people can with the click of a mouse apply for jobs that are totally inappropriate for them. This clogs the recruiters' pipelines and makes it more difficult for qualified candidates to stand out. To cut through the clutter, recruiters use key word search engines to find the most qualified candidates, and they use referrals. It's almost impossible for your resume to get reviewed if you don't have the right key words on your resume or a referral from an insider. For these reasons, it makes no sense to spend any time applying for inappropriate jobs.

Specificity enables me to market myself very powerfully to potential employers
in four key ways:

* I am able to craft a resume and cover letters that are internally consistent and build a clear picture of my abilities and impact in previous jobs. This gives me a much better chance of rising to the top of the pile and getting an interview.

* I can show a potential employer how I will help them achieve their goals, building a case based on my past experience, expertise and enthusiasm.

* I know why I want to do the job, so can answer that question in an interview. Employers want to hire someone who wants to work for them, so your desire to do the job will make a difference in an application and an interview.

* I know what I'm looking for in an employer and job, so I have more confidence in the interview, which avoids the deadly smell of desperation.

When I am specific, it's much easier for other people to help me.
"What are you looking for?" is the first question people usually ask when they find you're looking for a job. If you say "anything," people don't know how to help you. They often start to ask you questions to help narrow down your focus. Eventually, you'll get more specific and the person may be able to pass you on to someone else. However, they may have a less-than-optimal opinion of you because you don't know what you want.

Sometimes, people will say "come back to me when you know what you want to do." It's just too hard for someone to do your thinking for you. So make your network's job simpler by doing the work to decide what work you want to do.

These are three great reasons to get specific. The reality is that most of us DO know what we want to do, what we're good at, and what we're willing to do as a job. That knowledge may be hiding under many things. It's certainly easier to say "I don't want to do this or that" than to say "THIS is what I want to do."

It's not very risky to reject things; it's riskier and a little scary to say "I want this." Avoiding disappointment often is an excuse for not getting specific. When you say you want something, you risk being disappointed. I for one don't like being disappointed. It is difficult to adjust my feelings to a new reality with one less option and perhaps a little less hope, then to regroup and get myself motivated all over again to go back out there and look for work.

However, applying for jobs for which you are not suited brings disappointment, too. If I'm going to be disappointed anyway, I would rather spend my limited job search time on a process that has a better chance of producing desired results.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Your Own Business Might Be What You Love

I got a question about whether starting your own business is a way to do the kind of work you love. It definitely is, as long as you understand what goes into being an entrepreneur and business owner.

Decide what ONE idea you will pursue.

Just as in a job search, you'll need to decide exactly what business you want to start. Get specific. Focus. Narrow down your options to one thing. Make a considered choice.

If you're considering what business you might want to start, this blog and my e-book will help you identify what you love to do and do really well and thus could market to other people.

You'll have time and energy to fully develop just one business at a time. You can develop other businesses later. Right now, it's essential to focus your energy on one concept.

Most people have many ideas and have trouble deciding which one thing they will pursue, or try to pursue all of them at once. Then they wonder why none of them is taking off. This is one time when you must be ruthless with yourself and decide on the single most promising business idea to which you are willing to devote hours of love and labor.

Learn what's involved in starting and structuring your business.

* Many colleges and universities provide these classes which have a very low cost and give you a great understanding of what's involved in building a business - from incorporating to financial management and marketing. For instance, Baruch College in New York City has the Field Center for Entrepreneurship that offers non-credit courses for entrepreneurs.

* The Small Business Administration has tons of information on its website, and also offers classes, both online and in-person. Its Small Business Development Centers offer training. You can locate a Center in your area by clicking here. Sometimes the SBA and local governments offer programs in partnership with local and national non-profit organizations. Many of these are free.

* In larger cities, some local non-profits have small business assistance programs.

* Perhaps there are small business incubators in your community, to help you with the start-up of your business. You'll find a list of incubators here.

* Another resource is SCORE, the “Counselors of America’s Small Business Owners”. Like other sources, it has special programs for women and minority-owned businesses - take advantage of them.

* American Express's OpenForum has a wealth of information about entrepreneurship and operating a small business.

* StartUp Nation is an on-line community for small business start-ups, including on-line businesses.

* An on-line resource for women who work at home is The Association of Work At Home Women. There's a lot of free information on the site, as well as more resources with a paid membership.

I suggest that you review a few resources and then decide on one or two you will commit to using. Choose those that explain things in a way that makes sense to you and that fit your budget of both money and time. In some cases, it will be easier to take a six week class that costs some money because you are demonstrating to yourself how committed you are. In other cases, you'll want to use an on-line resource and take your time learning and then putting lessons into practice.

Have realistic expectations.

New businesses take time and energy - a LOT of both. After you've decided which business to pursue, you'll be able to map out a plan for developing it into a reality. You will quickly see how much is involved in starting a business when you read even a little information from the educational resources listed above.

Because there are lots of things to learn and keep track of, give yourself some time to do your research and get started. How much time? That depends on you and your other commitments, such as an existing job, family responsibilities, and financial resources.

Patience with yourself is key. It's not helpful to you to get constantly frustrated by how long things take, or to wish that you were doing more or making more progress than you are. If you really want to do this business, you will do it - and all the badgering of yourself will not make you move any faster than you are able. In fact, it may slow you down - because who wants to do anything when their results will be criticized? Anything you do is good enough.

The key work here is DO. Take action. Go ahead and do something and see what happens. You can always revise something if you find it doesn't work. If you don't do anything, however, you'll never get the information that could help you improve what you do. And once something is in motion, it is easier to keep it going and build toward having a rewarding business.

I've attended so many entrepreneur seminars and been part of several business-startup communities that I've gotten a sense of how long it takes to get a business started, and how long it takes for it to be profitable. I also have worked with many consultants so have a sense of how long it takes for them to be self-supporting.

Success usually comes fairly quickly for consultants with specific expertise, the ability to network, and the willingness to ask for fees. Sometimes you need to work on the last two for a few months before you get a paying client. Sometimes a paying client appears quickly - within two to three weeks. That's a fantastic start. Keep in mind your goal of supporting yourself. My observation is that it takes about a year to build up enough clients to achieve that goal. And there must be constant attention to marketing your services in order to have a sustainable consulting business.

My observation is that most other business builders typically take anywhere from 3 to 12 months to settle on a business focus, put all the pieces in place, and start to make some sales. A sustainable business takes about 3 years to build.

Building a business takes time. Most people are working at the same time they are building a business, and something suffers. Sleep is one thing that often is curtailed. Time with friends and for fun is another casualty of a business start-up. And unfortunately, time with family can suffer, too. If you aren't willing to give up anything, you can still start a business. Just recognize that it will take a lot longer to develop.

I think it's fantastic to start your own business. And I don't want to discourage you at all. I simply want you to know what's involved. Your love of the business will take you pretty far. It's not enough, though. If you want yours to generate enough revenue to support a household, then make sure you understand that your business will take a whole lot of time, energy, emotional resources, and sacrifice. When you accept that and act accordingly, you can make your new business a success.

Friday, January 8, 2010

Removing all obstacles to getting your next job

I’m becoming more aware of how important it is that we do all we can to demonstrate that we are ready to make our next move. Demonstrate what and to whom? Well, demonstrate to the universe, to ourselves and our friends and family, and to prospective employers and clients - that we have the necessary skills and attitude.

There's great value of taking a course or two to add to your toolbox of skills, increase your ability to “hit the ground running,” show that you're a “lifelong learner,” and boost your self-confidence in the search process. Here are a few examples of how taking a class improves one’s credibility.

* My MBA gives me more credibility as a coach. I have significant work success, yet it's in the non-profit field. Having an MBA makes it a little easier for people from the for-profit world to believe I know what I'm talking about there. (By the way, non-profits have a lot to teach for-profits about "managing to do more with less," something they DON'T teach in business school.)

* Someone I know took a ton of courses in the Microsoft Office suite of applications. Getting more skilled really boosted her confidence when she applied for jobs and went on interviews. It was an investment of time and money that had a great payback: the marketing job she wanted and got specifically called for PowerPoint expertise.

* Another person returned to work after an 8 year sabbatical raising his children. He’s a producer and knows that the film and video world has marched along quite quickly in his absence. He took a formal class in video editing to get up to date with the lingo and technology. Almost immediately after enrolling, he applied for and eventually got a job as in-house producer for a Fortune 500 company.

* A third person is deciding what she wants to do besides law, and is using classes as a way to get a better idea of the design field.

* Another woman sought and secured several volunteer gigs in public relations as a way to stay busy, do good, keep her skills up, and list clients on her resume under the name of her consulting firm. One potential employer was so impressed by her client list that he asked why she would want to leave consulting to come to work for an organization! Not long after that, she landed a job as an in-house communications specialist for a prominent national foundation.

The moral of these stories is that if there is a tangible obstacle standing in your way, address it head on. If you don’t have up-to-date skills in the field you intend to pursue, take a class, ask a friend to teach you, and look into volunteer opportunities to practice your craft. You’ll make yourself more marketable, keep the brain active and learning, and boost your confidence as you seek work.

Will it take time? Of course. Yet the time will pass anyway and at the end of it, your toolbox will be fuller and you’ll have cleared one more patch of your path to fulfilling work.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Frequently Asked Questions

As many of you know, I have written an e-book called Your ‘Right Fit’ Job: Guide to Finding Work You Love. In it, I lay out a step-by-step process for identifying the kind of work you really want to do and then preparing the marketing plan and materials to secure that work.

Over time, I've gotten a number of questions from people who've read my book or who know I write on career transformation. Here are the most Frequently Asked Questions:

1. Why do you recommend being specific about the job I want? Many people tell me I should be more general.

2. I don’t have any measurable accomplishments. So how should I write my resume?

3. What do I say when someone asks me what work I am seeking? I can’t seem to say it in a few sentences, plus people never seem to have any suggestions or help to offer.

4. I’m hoping to get into a new field but I don’t know a lot about it or anyone working in it. How can I make that transition?

5. I finished my Must Have List. Now what do I do with it?

6. I can’t seem to find any jobs that match my criteria. What do I do now?

7. Does it really matter if I have a LinkedIn profile? It seems like a repetition of my resume. Do employers even look at it?

8. I’ve been out of work for many months. How do I explain what I’ve been doing without looking like a failure?

9. It seems like I’m overqualified for so many jobs. What can I do to persuade employers that I’m worth interviewing?

10. I’ve sent out so many resumes and never get an interview. What can I do differently?

11. How do you recommend I follow up with employers at various points in the hiring process? I don’t want to be intrusive yet I don’t want to be forgotten.

12. I have no trouble getting interviews but I haven’t gotten an offer. What could I do to land a job?

13. I’m so frustrated and anxious, and feel such pressure to get any job. I feel like I’ve done everything in your book. What have I missed?

Over the next couple of weeks, I'll provide answers to these questions. If you have any other issues you'd like addressed, drop me a comment. I'll be delighted to address what I can! And I have access to other career experts through who have lots of great advice and experience to share, as well. Check them out yourself.

Monday, January 4, 2010

Getting Un-Stuck in Your Job Search

If you find yourself getting stuck in your search, you may have missed some piece of the process and have not zeroed in on EXACTLY what you want to do.

* You may be too general, talking in theory about the kind of work you want to do instead of the exact impact you want to have or the specific challenges you want to tackle and solve. That means you lack passion. Passion comes from knowing exactly the kind of results you want to produce.

* It's possible that you need to gather more information from the job market by applying for more jobs and networking. Usually, with more information and more feedback from the market, you can refine your goal and get more specific. With specificity, I find the stuckness evaporates and there's a pretty fast movement toward securing your desired job.

* Perhaps you need some help with your search. A coach can help you strategize about how to occupy time until you get a job, finding creative ways to find out your job search status, identifying ways to overcome employer objections (often based on a gut feeling that is always accurate), and both listening to venting and then helping you reframe your perspective.

* Your time frame may be unrealistic. If you thought you would have a job in three months and you don't, you could feel stuck. That's not "stuck" in this job market. The usual length of time for a job search varies, based on so many factors. I would say to count on searching for 6 to 12 months. Employers are taking a LOT longer to make decisions.