Transferable Skills of PhDs

PhDs have brilliant under-appreciated transferable skills. I’ve had an employer say they didn’t want to consider an applicant with a PhD for their job. Not even for an interview. “Too specialist” was the assumption. Luckily, I convinced them that PhDs have the brilliant transferable skill of specialising.  All sorts of careers require workers to focus upon a specific topic, in great detail, for a specific length of time, in order to achieve a specific goal. Just like any marketing manager, product developer, media producer, business planner. In this case the person got an interview and the job as head of …

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What Matters? – first step towards a meaningful job

My first meeting with a new client (you) starts with a free preliminary half-hour, or so, where we discuss What Matters? and What is the Opportunity? We need to assess where you are now and how I can help. Your greatest success is going to be in four areas : doing what you love, what you’re good at that fulfils a need in the world and that you can be paid for. These are the first four things to find out. Typical questions to ask are – When were you most alive? What is the best thing about you?  What …

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Emotional Intelligence is Crucial for Career Acceleration

Emotional Intelligence is Crucial for Career Acceleration A study of 500 managers over 10 years by Claudio Fernandez-Araoz classified executive hires and promotions as successes or failures. Successes were defined as true stars and top performers in their categories. Failures were defined as average or mediocre performers. The study found that the top performers excelled in two categories: Emotional Intelligence (EQ) and Relevant Experience. Managers recruited based on these factors performed at star level 42% of the time. They failed 13% of the time. In management selection processes, the combination of IQ (often characterized as problem solving or analytical skills) …

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Networking is a Contact Sport and it’s Not about You

It’s a small world. The six degrees of separation idea is that anyone can be connected to any other person through a chain of acquaintances with no more than five intermediaries. Networking in Ireland, I find that there are three degrees of separation! Networking is a mystery to most people, which is why they dread it so much and do it so poorly. If you’re one of them, you probably feel awkward asking for help when you’re looking for a job. Because you’ve been advised to do this when job hunting, you call people out of nowhere, even though they …

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Video-tape your Mock Interview

You’re getting the interviews, but also the Thank you for your application but… letters. So you re-polish the CV and start again.  But if you’re like most people, you won’t do the one thing that could really make a difference in your next job interview. Video-tape. People overestimate their strengths and underestimate their weaknesses all the time. They tell themselves they can “wing it” and congratulate themselves for how well they think on their feet. Except, they can’t. Only by video recording yourself (or having someone else do it) as you answer interview prep questions can you see and hear how you come …

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Your CV is little more than a message in a bottle. 

Using the same generic CV for all your job applications is like tossing a message in a bottle into the ocean. Of course, you need to have a CV. However, many people fail to realise that its primary purpose is not to get a job. Its main purpose is to get a face-to-face meeting. It is to be intriguing enough to start a conversation, to get an interview. And there is an art in writing it. Well done, it not only gets you an interview, but also cues questions for the interviewer to ask that build to a picture of …

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Learn from each Job Interview – Ten common mistakes.

Learning from each job interview is key to improving your interviewing skills. What went well? What not so well? What was missed? What went well but didn’t matter? Here is a summary of 10 fairly common mistakes. 1.) Complaining about your Employer, Boss or Coworkers. It is a huge red flag when someone talks negatively about their past employment. You are interviewing not only for a job position, but also for working well with your co-workers. Take the opportunity to turn the question into a way to talk about the company you are interviewing with. 2.) Not knowing much about the company. “Why do you …

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Negotiating a new job? Five rules to improve your power.

3 Job Negotiation elements: employer’s need, your worth, relative power. From the first interaction in an application for a job you are making an impression. In fact, engaging in a negotiation. Three crucial elements of this negotiation are the employer’s need, your worth to the employer and relative power dynamics at the time. The more you impress in every contact that you are unique and incomparable, the better the final job offer package will be. A survey of 2,500 business people by Willis Towers Watson, found that 94% understood that they shouldn’t expect a job for life. It’s their responsibility to …

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Rapport building – ‘hitting it off’ in a job interview

A job interview is a conversation, usually with strangers. Like all effective conversations, it starts with rapport. Even if the interviewers are not strangers, this is your chance to make a first impression for this new job. “Hitting it off” is at the core of a successful interview. There is plenty of evidence that people like people who are like them and that companies adapt jobs in order to suit likeable candidates. Whether it is selecting a new employee at job interviews, picking a new team or influencing decision-makers inside or outside the organisation, the likeability factor should not be …

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Is it Time to Change your Job?

Is it time to change your job? “If you’re not growing, get going” is advice I got early in my career. While leaving the security of a job may be one of the hardest decision you make, if you’ve tried nothing new in months or years you will wonder why you waited so long. Job comfort is no substitute for the resultant deadening to your brain, spirit, esteem and career. Surveys continually tell of the signs that you are in the wrong job. The top three reasons given for changing jobs are: bad boss desire for personal development balance work and …

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