• I took your advice!

    ** From my weekly newsletter to TheLadders.com subscribers **
    Readers, we work awfully hard to get you the advice you need in your job search. We interview hundreds of recruiters, speak with thousands of job-seekers, and underwrite research at a half-dozen universities each year in order to provide you with the best tips, tricks, and insights for your search. I share those insights with you weekly in this Monday newsletter, you can find them on our site here, or you can buy our book “You’re Better Than Your Job Search,” which collects them all in one place for easy reference. Whatever the form, we want to see you successful in your job hunt.

    That’s why we were very gratified at the tremendous response to my newsletter last week: “Twenty Questions to ask in an interview.” Some of you put those pointers into practice right away, with great results! So I thought I’d turn the microphone over to you this week; while we received several hundred replies, I’ll share just a dozen of them with you…


    In an interview yesterday, I asked questions 6 and 13. The answers were enlightening! Just wanted to say thank you.

    Congratulations, John!


    How did you know I have an interview TODAY? You gave me 6 great, on-point questions I hadn’t thought of. Thanks,


    You’re quite welcome, Steve!

    Hey Marc,

    I want to thank you for the emails that you have been generating during my job search. It’s been a tough journey, and this week all the effort and preparation came to fruition. I accepted a job offer and am very grateful and excited about the opportunity. I’ve used your “bonus” question on several interviews and I believe it had a part in me getting the offer I did. Thanks again, and please continue your motivational crusade for those still out there looking. Take care!


    Well, Sam, that’s exactly what we like to hear! Using the “bonus” question is a great way to stand apart from all those non-TheLadders candidates!


    I want to thank you for your sage advice in getting me to my new position with an established American auto maker. I found myself at the beginning of 2010 in a most unfamiliar role as a statistic in the ranks of the unemployed. Fortunately, I did find employment in my field of expertise in just a little over 4 months. Although the position did not require that I relocate my family, I was not yet satisfied with the whole job situation as I did sacrifice salary for the security of benefits. I then received the call that gave me an opportunity to utilize many of your techniques in an interview that was 30 years in the making. Thanks to you, and those with whom I have been able to acquire immeasurable advice, I was able to ‘knock the ball out of the park.’

    I received a call the very next day from the HR department requesting further information of me and that my interview, (there were 6 managers in the room), was said to have went exceedingly well.

    I originally sent my resume to this company in February of this year, I started my new job last week. Thank you for your support, even though you have no clue who I am, you did make it possible for my career to continue as I had dreamed.

    Thank you Marc, and keep up the good work, there are many of us who appreciate exactly what it is that you are doing.



    Well, John, it is wonderful to hear that our techniques worked for you and helped you hit it out of the park. It’s feedback like this “from the field” that helps us direct our research in ever more productive ways each year. And it’s very gratifying!

    Hi Marc,

    This is great food for thought especially on a day when I have to prep for an afternoon interview! Thank you very much for your timely message!



    Good luck on that interview, S.!

    Marc – Your “Twenty Questions” (11-15-10) came in real handy with my Monday morning interview. Glad I caught them before I went out the door today!


    That is awesome, T.!


    Thanks again for all your help this morning in helping me prepare for my interview with [Fortune 500 company]. It went well and we are now scheduling a time for me to come in and take a test. I will keep you posted on the outcome and thanks again for all your help and support.


    D.! That is so good to hear! Good luck with the rest of your interviews!

    Good Morning Marc,

    As typical for the Ladders, your timing is perfect!

    I am headed to a face to face interview at 2 pm this afternoon, following a successful phone interview with my future boss 2 weeks ago. I will be interviewing with 9 (yes 9) [VPs and Directors].

    I am always very good about bringing questions along, and in fact that was a high point during my phone interview.

    These are beautiful however and into my file they are going and up to Los Angeles with me.

    Wish me luck…


    OK, David, I’ll be rooting for you!

    Hi Marc,

    I just wanted to say how much I appreciate your emails/newsletters.. this was another good one. Yours is one of the few newsletters that I subscribe to that I regularly open. Nice job and thank you!


    Thanks for the kind words, Jo!

    Hi Mark,

    Great newsletter, as usual. You chose a very serendipitous topic as I was just updating my list of questions for my upcoming job hunt. You did my work for me and handed it to me on a platter. Thanks!

    Of course every situation is different so my questions will be adapted to the situation. This is a great start, though. Nice work.

    Best regards,


    I think Dan’s experience is a relevant one to discuss. If you’ve not been looking for a job for a while, you have to create a list of questions that you want to ask in an interview. But the problem is… you’ve been asking questions in an interview for a while! So you might not know where to start. Our goal here at TheLadders is to save you the time and effort involved in the job search by doing the preparation work and the grunt work for you. Glad we could help, Dan!

    Hi Marc,

    There is so much stuff floating around by self proclaimed experts and advice (opinion) from endless web sites.

    Just to let you know, I think you’re uniquely high quality and add lots of tangible value. Keep it up, many are grateful!

    Warm regards,


    It’s great to hear that you find them useful, Steve.

    Hello Marc,

    Extremely helpful!!!! (As most of your emails have been.)

    I’m entering a mtg today trying to decide between two opptys. The answers to my applicable and selected questions will really help me differentiate and make a decision.

    Best regards,


    Gary — I love subscribers who love exclamation points as much as I do!!! Good luck on your big decision…

    OK, Readers, good luck with the search this week!

  • Twenty Questions

    As I’ve met with TheLadders subscribers across the country, I’ve heard that the interview questions in this newsletter from February were very useful to you in preparing for interviews, and what you should ask in those interviews.

    And of course, unless your job is to ask questions, it’s no surprise that cooking up good ideas for what to ask might not come completely naturally or easily to you.

    So I thought it would be even more useful to collect my best questions together and update them for you. Here are “Twenty Questions” that you can ask in an interview…

    1. What’s the biggest change your group has gone through in the last year? How has the recession impacted your group?
    2. One year from now, if I get the job, what will earn me a “gold star”? What are the key accomplishments you’d like to see in this role over the next year?
    3. What’s your (or my future boss’) leadership style?
    4. About which competitor are you most worried?
    5. How do your sales / marketing / finance / technology / operations work here?
    6. What type of people are successful here? What type of people are not?
    7. What’s one thing that’s key to your success that somebody from outside the company wouldn’t know about?
    8. How did you get your start in this industry? Why do you stay?
    9. What are your best and worst working relationships with other groups in the company?
    10. What keeps you up at night? What’s your biggest worry?
    11. What’s the timeline for making a decision? When should I get back in touch with you?
    12. Why is this position open? Who was previously in this role / why did you decide to create it?
    13. What is your reward system? Is it a star system / team-oriented / equity-based / bonus-based / “attaboy!”-based? Why is that your reward system? What is the hoped-for purpose of it, and what actually happens when you put it into practice? What are the positives and negatives of your reward system, and if you could change any one thing, what would it be?
    14. What information is shared with the employees (revenues, costs, operating metrics)? Is this an open-book shop, or do you play it closer to the vest? How is information shared? How do I get access to the information I need to be successful in this job?
    15. If we have a very successful 2011, what would that look like? What will have happened over the next 12 months? How does this position help achieve that?
    16. How does the company / my future boss do performance reviews? How do I make the most of the performance review process to ensure that I’m doing the best I can for the company?
    17. What is the rhythm to the work here? Is there a time of year that it’s all hands on deck and we’re pulling all-nighters, or is it pretty consistent throughout the year? How about during the week, is it pretty evenly spread throughout the week, or are there crunch days?
    18. What type of industry / functional / skills-based experience and background are you looking for in the person who will fill this position? What would the “perfect” candidate look like? How do you assess my experience in comparison? What gaps do you see?
    19. In my career, I’ve primarily enjoyed working with big / small / growing / independent / private / public / family-run companies. If that’s the case, how successful will I be at your firm?
    20. What types of attributes are common to the people who are considered heroes at your company? What types of attributes are common to the promising people you hired but who then flamed out and failed or left? As I’m considering whether or not I’d be successful here, how should I think about the experiences of the heroes and the flame-outs?

      And always remember our favorite “bonus” question: “What can I do to help you (my future boss) get a gold star in the next year?”

      OK, so maybe that’s 45 questions grouped into twenty buckets – I’m all about the extra service!

      Now, what you’re not going to do is go into an interview and read off every one of these questions one after another from a print-out of this newsletter. That would feel unnatural.

      No, instead, find five or six of the questions that really speak to you, that hit at the parts of your next job that you’re most concerned about, and jot those down on a notepad to take with you to the interview. Practice asking them naturally so that you feel comfortable with each of them. And then sit back and really listen to the answers – it’s the best chance you’ll get to find out what a position holds in store for you…

      OK, Readers, I hoped I’ve armed you with sufficient queries for the week.

      Good luck and let me know how it goes!

    1. It’s a marathon, not a sprint.

      ** From my weekly newsletter to TheLadders.com subscribers **

      Yesterday was the New York City Marathon here in TheLadders’ hometown. For anybody who has watched the marathon, you know it is an inspiring glimpse into amazing achievement by ordinary people. Some 45,000 runners make their way through the streets of the five boroughs to the accompanying cheers of strangers.

      Here’s a fairly typical scene from Mile 17 of the crowd yelling, clapping, and cheering on the wave of runners:

      NYC Marathon

      And, you know, there’s a lot of similarity between the real marathon and the marathon that is your job search. They’re both long, exhausting, require you to pace yourself, and ultimately end in your triumph.

      If we could somehow put your friends, family, and colleagues along the race course of your job hunt, they’d be rooting for you just as loudly as the people in the video.

      You see, everybody wants you to succeed. That can be easy to forget when you’re dealing with the pressures and juggling the time commitments that come along with looking for a new position, but you need to remember: everybody wants you to succeed, everybody is rooting for you.

      Your success in your job search isn’t just good for you. It’s good for your family, because you’ll be happier and more productive. It’s good for friends, because we all like to be a part of a community that is successful, growing, and achieving new things. And it’s good for your former colleagues because they like you and want you to continue flourishing in your career (it also means you’re getting to be a more and more valuable contact!)

      Everybody wants you to win because it makes them feel good for you, and it makes them feel good about themselves.

      You might not have thought about it in that way in a while, so I’d like you to make an effort to discover the rooting, cheering fans on your side in the next few weeks.

      Here’s what you’ll do. Ask your friends, family and contacts these two questions:

      “What would you hope for me to get out of this job search?”


      “What do you think would make me happiest as the outcome of this search?”

      With these two questions, you’ll discover, again, how much people care about your success, and how much they want you to win. It’s a very good way for you to remind yourself of all the clapping, cheering supporters you have on your side.

      Good luck in your job search this week, Readers.

    2. Seeking VP, Anything

      ** From my weekly newsletter to TheLadders.com subscribers **
      As I travel around the country speaking with job-seekers like you, I’ll ask:

      “So what are you looking for?”

      And all too often I’ll hear back:

      “Oh, I’m looking for anything.”

      Which is a problem.

      Because in today’s economy, no employer is looking for a “VP, Anything.” They’re looking for an experienced professional who can solve specific problems.

      Whether you’re speaking with me, a former colleague, or a new connection, you need to have a brief, pithy assertion of who you are and what you’re qualified to do. As a matter of fact, you need to be able to describe what you’re looking to do in 30 seconds or less.

      That’s what’s called an “elevator pitch” — a concise statement of your background and abilities and what you’re looking for that can be shared in the time it takes an elevator to go to the top floor.

      So it’s not “I’m a saleswoman” and it’s not “I’m in logistics” and it’s not “I’m a finance guy”.

      No, in the 21st century you need to be more precise and more concrete. You need to describe what you’ve done and what you’re looking to do… specifically.

      So you’ll need to share your ambitions more directly. It’s not “I’m a saleswoman” but rather “I’m a sales management professional looking to lead a 100+ person sales organization, and am particularly interested in opportunities leading sales teams going through the transactional-to-relationship-selling transition.”

      It’s not “I’m in logistics” but rather “I’m a logistics team leader who specializes in driving efficiency improvements in established groups, bringing down the cost of production year after year.”

      And it’s not “I’m a finance guy” but rather “I’m a finance guy who enjoys rationalizing finance teams in multi-unit businesses and creating metrics and operating procedures that partner with the business to drive understanding of the underlying levers of growth.”

      You need to be specific and concise in your description of your ambitions, so that your network contacts, your future boss, or I can understand how and where you’ll add value and improve the business.

      So please, avoid the easy temptation to say that you’re looking for anything, and be specific in your job search.

      It’s the best way to let people know how to help you, and to let companies know how you’ll help them. (For more advice on creating your elevator pitch, see my newsletter from August on the topic.)

      We’ve got six weeks left in job-hunting season before the year-end holidays, Readers. Let’s make the most of it!

    3. The Intelligent Job-seeker

      ** From my weekly newsletter to TheLadders.com subscribers **
      In “The Intelligent Entrepreneur“, a new book out from author Bill Murphy, Jr., Bill distills 10 rules of successful entrepreneurship from the stories of several Harvard Business School graduates from the Class of 1998, including yours truly.

      As I read through the stories, and looked at Bill’s rules, it struck me that there are similarities between the successful entrepreneur and the successful job-seeker. You’re both trying to create something new — a new company or a new position for yourself. You’re both faced with the emotional challenges that go with any new endeavor. There are plenty of setbacks along the way in starting a company and getting a job. And success is dependent on sticking to it and seeing it through.

      So with that in mind, I thought I’d share five of Bill’s 10 rules with you and show how they apply to your job search.

      #2 Find a problem, then solve it.

      It’s not enough in the 21st century to simply describe yourself to future employers as “I’m a finance guy” or “I’m a saleswoman.” Particularly in this difficult economic environment, you need to let your future boss know what kind of problem you can solve for him or her. So be specific about what you bring to the table: “I’m a finance professional who specializes in Sarbanes-Oxley and really enjoys working with internationally headquartered companies to meet American regulatory requirements” or “I’m a sales professional who loves working with biotech start-ups as they go from pre-revenue to $10 mm in sales.”

      Find a problem, and then let your future boss know how you will solve it.

      #4 You can’t do it alone.

      The job search can be a lonely endeavor and you can’t possibly make it alone. You’ll need the support of your family and friends, and being honest with them about the trials and tribulations you’re experiencing is an important part of your emotional well-being during the search. You’ll also need to rely on your colleagues and contacts, and have them on the lookout for you during your job search. (See my advice last week on this topic: “Ask for a reference, not a job.”)

      Enlisting the aid of the people you know for support, advice, and connections is the way to your next great job.

      #5 You must do it alone.

      But as much as you’ll need to rely on family, friends and colleagues, it is ultimately going to depend on you. You’ll need to make the calls, you’ll need to do the follow-up, and you’ll need to be prepared for the interviews. When it’s 10:17 a.m. on Tuesday morning and you’re staring at the phone thinking about making that follow-up call, it’s up to you, and you alone, to pick up the phone and dial the digits. Nobody else can do it for you.

      Understanding that you’ll need to make the commitment, set aside the appropriate amount of time, and then fight through our natural tendency to procrastination, is key to your success.

      #8 Learn to sell.

      Take your annual earnings and multiply by five. That’s the value of the product you are selling — the next five years of your labor. It’s the most important sales job you’re going to have, and you need to learn how to sell. You need to qualify the buyer — make sure they need an expensive product like you — and then explain to them the benefits they’ll get by purchasing — how you’ll help solve the problems they’re facing in their business.

      Too often we can allow ourselves to slip into focusing on what I need out of the job hunt. You have to remember that it’s not about you, it’s about what your future employer needs. And you need to sell them on how you fulfill those needs better than any other candidate.

      #9 Persist, persevere, prevail.

      The job hunt is filled with twists and turns — moments of hope and days of despair. That’s normal. Even the most successful, polished, high-priced executives and professionals that we work with here at TheLadders have those weeks when the phone is not ringing, emails go unanswered, and the creeping doubts seem to loom larger.

      It’s all part of the job-seeking process, and in order to be successful, you’ll need to overcome those difficulties. It is only persistence and perseverance that will see you through the bad days and the tough interviews. Anybody who has started a company, and everybody who goes through the job search, experience tough times. Stick to it, know that you are valuable, and you will make it through to success!

      To learn the other five rules of successful entrepreneurship, I’d recommend you go pick up “The Intelligent Entrepreneur” today.

      Have a great week in the job search, Readers!

    4. Two Terrific Tips To Try

      As we travelled across the country on our national book tour these past few weeks, two bits of advice that we’ve shared with you over the years stood out as being the most useful for professionals looking to make their job search:

      - Ask for a reference, not a job
      - In the interview, ask your future boss, “How do I help you get a gold star at the end of the year?”

      In the Q&A and in our conversations with you individually after our talk, we heard time and again that these two tips were the most differentiated, and successful, for professionals in their job searches. So let’s re-visit them this Monday morning…

      Ask for a reference, not a job

      We all know how painful networking can be. When I asked attendees at our book signings “who enjoys networking?” typically only about 15% of hands went up. And that’s because networking can be awkward, intimidating, and anxiety-provoking.

      So my advice is: don’t do that. Don’t do networking that makes you and the person you are speaking with feel uncomfortable.

      Let’s look at the difference between bad and good networking.

      Here’s how we typically approach the “networking call”, when we’ve phoned an old friend:

      “Hi Cindy, it’s Bob, your old college buddy. Yeah, how are things going? That’s great. Say, Cindy, I’m going to be looking for a new position in the next couple months here and I was wondering — do you know of any jobs out there for me, or are there any jobs at your company for somebody like me?”

      Now what does this type of networking do to Cindy? It puts her on the spot and it makes her feel uncomfortable.

      She’s not an expert in the job search, and it’s unlikely that she knows where there are jobs out there for somebody like you. So now she is in the awkward position of having to tell you “no”.

      And our friends and colleagues hate being put in the position where they have to tell us “no”. They actually do want to help, so when you ask for their help in a way that prevents them from being any help, it makes both of you feel bad.

      Now let’s look at a better way to network:

      “Hi Cindy, it’s Bob, your old college buddy. Yeah, how are things going? That’s great. Say, Cindy, I’m going to be looking for a new position in the next couple months here and I was wondering — when it gets to the appropriate time in my job search, would it be possible for me to use you as a reference?”

      Well, how difficult is it for Cindy to say “yes” to this? It’s actually quite easy.

      And with that, you’ve actually created a positive feeling. You’ve told Cindy that you value her opinion enough to consider using her as a reference.

      And now that Cindy has had a positive interaction with you, she is much more likely to keep her ears perked up for news or information that might help you in your job search. Remember, you only to need to find one job to be fully employed so if you have dozens, or hundreds, of your contacts with their eyes and ears open for you, you’re more likely to find that position sooner rather than later.

      When I was shaking hands and signing books across the country, I heard from dozens of you that this advice has really worked, in real life, in making their job search more successful and their networking more comfortable. So please use it in good health!

      And the second bit of advice that really resonated with our audiences nationwide was:

      In the interview, ask your future boss “how do I help you get a gold star at the end of the year?”

      So often in interviews, we are focused on what the opportunity means to “me” — what will I get out of the job, what will I be doing, and how do I match up to the position?

      But you have to remember that your future boss is also thinking what this role means for “me” — what will this person do for me and my team, how will this person help us achieve our goals, how will this person make me more successful?

      If you think about it, how difficult was it for your future boss to get this position approved? Well, in these tough economic times, it was probably very difficult. To justify additional headcount in a still crummy economy, your future boss probably had to jump through hoops and hoops with Finance and HR to get permission to hire somebody new.

      So when you show an empathy for, and interest in, their situation and their success, you’ll be like a breath of fresh air.

      By asking how you can help your future boss get a gold star, you’re changing how you are viewed from being just another mouth to feed, to being somebody whose goals and motivations are aligned with theirs. You’re setting yourself apart as somebody who will balance their own needs with the needs of others. And you’re showing that you’re committed to making your boss successful.

      And that is just exactly the type of person who gets hired in our present economic environment.

      So thanks again folks for all the support on the road, and I really do hope you’ll put these two great bits of advice to work in making your job hunt more successful this week!

      A reader wrote in this afternoon with this comment:

      “First of all, let me say that both tips are excellent! I actually just tried the second one during a phone interview with an internal audit director and it really caught him off guard in the best sense possible. After taking a few seconds to gather his thoughts, he actually came out and said that it’s the first time in his career someone brought a question to the interview that went in the direction of what can a person do for the department rather than what can the department do for them. So, thanks a lot for the tip.”

    5. Bye-bye!

      “How come my job search isn’t going well?”

      I must have heard that question a hundred times on my way across the country these past two weeks to speak with you all about my new book “You’re Better Than Your Job Search.” I visited 9 cities over the past 10 days to meet with thousands of you at standing-room-only bookstores.

      You turned out in full force to see us in Mountain View, CA.
      We know the wait was very long in some cities due to the crowds — thank you for your support!

      That question is at the heart of our book. The reason we came up with the title is that when we meet with you, our subscribers, it’s clear that you’re an expert at your job. But you’re not an expert at the job search.

      We have a very positive, optimistic message: you will find your next great position, but there may be a few things that you need to do differently to get there.

      By the time we made it to DC, we were the 47th best-selling book in the entire country on Amazon.
      My co-author Matthew Rothenberg, Editor-in-Chief at TheLadders. I think Matthew’s success in illustrating our advice with real-life examples from real-life TheLadders’ subscribers is what has made this book so popular and so useful.

      I’ve been in online recruitment for over a decade, and let me tell you something: while it’s not rocket science, there are best practices, hints, tips, and tricks that you really should learn if you want to have a shorter, faster, easier, and more effective job search. There are simple things you can do to make it much more likely that you’ll hear back from the jobs you’re after.

      We want to share those with you, and that’s why we’ve pulled all of our best advice together in this book.

      The Atlanta Borders was gorgeous, and a wonderful place to meet so many fans in Georgia…
      When you’re doing well in your job search, a fist bump is entirely appropriate!
      A very interesting crowd came out on a rainy night in Los Angeles.
      Just because the job hunt is serious business doesn’t mean you shouldn’t approach it with a sense of humor.
      You flooded Warwick’s in San Diego…
      Signing line was a great chance to meet so many of you in person.
      A warm welcome in Houston despite it being a Saturday afternoon during football season! Thank you!
      There were a lot of books to sign across the country — we even sold out 3 of the stores we visited!

      I’d like to thank, and encourage you to visit, our retailer friends: Amazon (where the book is back in stock and selling for $11.55), Borders, whose staff was simply wonderful to us all the way across the country, and Barnes & Noble, another great host.

      Taking your questions in Houston, TX.
      We, literally, had them hanging from the rafters in Mountain View, CA.
      A question from the balcony in the Bay Area.
      (Photos: Cori Rosoff)

      And while it’s time to say “bye-bye” to this leg of our journey, we’ll be back out to see you in January!

      Thank you again for your support, your questions, and your belief that you are better than your job search!

    6. I’d better shave

      ** From my weekly newsletter to TheLadders.com subscribers **
      Good Monday morning,


      I’m on a 10-city book tour right now, Readers, to meet with you in person and share what we’ve learned in our new book “You’re Better Than Your Job Search“. That means lots of travel and press interviews and bookstores all across the country.

      So I was excited to have an interview with the Associated Press on the topic of our book when I was in Washington, DC, and I was getting all set to phone in and do the interview for distribution to hundreds of newspapers around the country.

      There was just one problem.

      It wasn’t a phone interview — they wanted me in person at their DC office.

      And it wasn’t for distribution to their print newspaper members, but rather a video interview for their website.

      And I was in “comfortable” travel clothes and not looking that presentable for a national web audience.

      Uh-oh. I’d better shave.

      You know how this drill goes: an anxious stop to rummage through your bag, a shave in a borrowed sink, and the quick change into a suit that you hope isn’t too rumpled-looking.

      And interviews, whether for a book or for a job, are like that. You’re doing something out of the ordinary so your regular routine doesn’t prepare you for the twists and turns, and the unpredictable changes that happen along the way.

      When you are looking for a new job, the companies with which you are interviewing will throw all sorts of sudden surprises in your way, and it’s important to realize that that’s OK, and it is just part of the process.

      You’ll arrive to find out that they’ve added the CEO to your interview schedule. You’ll get a call on the way to the baseball game that they’d like you to speak with the other VP tonight. Or you’ll get the interview question that is completely out of the blue and you’ll be thinking to yourself… “Uh-oh”… just like I did.

      It’s always surprises, surprises, surprises.

      So you need to prepared. Prepared for the quick change, prepared for the unexpected question, and prepared to not let the randomness of the job search produce unnecessary anxiety — you’ve got to realize that it’s all just part of a process that is out of the ordinary, unusual, and ever-changing, so there’s no need to get overly worried about it.

      Keep calm, keep cool, do the best you can at the moment, and always try to get a little more prepared for the next time.

      To help you do just that, you can use TheLadders to find jobs, write your resume, or read up on how to network, interview, or negotiate salary.

      You can even use our site to get instant updates from recruiters or HR people with jobs for you. Use our social-media feature called “Follow Recruiter” to “follow” recruiters with jobs that you might be interested in. When you find a recruiter with one or more jobs that are right for you, click “follow” and then every time they post a job, you’ll hear about it immediately via email. It’s pretty easy and only takes one click, so go check it out now.

      OK, folks, I’m in San Diego today as I write this, and I’m looking forward to the second half of our two-week book tour this week! It’s been wonderful meeting you all in person!

    7. You’re better than that

      ** From my weekly newsletter to TheLadders.com subscribers **
      My new book, “You’re Better Than Your Job Search”, is out, and I’d like to thank you, for making it possible.

      You see, in the seven years since I started TheLadders and this Monday newsletter, I’ve read over 400,000 e-mails from subscribers like you and the 4 million other professionals on TheLadders. And it is your stories, your hopes, your dreams, your fears, and your careers that have inspired me to write this book. In fact, we took those stories of struggle and success and used them to illustrate the job hunt with actual, live examples from your fellow subscribers — dozens of them — in order to make this a practical, easy guide to giving you a better job search.

      You can buy our new book at Amazon (with a “newly published” discount price this week of $11.55), Borders, Barnes & Noble, or Books-a-million.

      We wrote hundreds of bite-sized, easy-to-read, bits of advice, including:

      • What three things must you cover in an interview?
      • When is it OK to wear pleated pants to an interview?
      • How do I get a higher salary in negotiations?
      • Why shouldn’t your resume be about you?
      • Why should I work with recruiters?

      … and many, many more.

      We’ll be taking the book on the road for the next two weeks to speak with you in person about advancing your professional career. We started off in New York City on Friday night…

      It was standing room only at the Borders Columbus Circle — thanks for the great turn-out on a Friday night!

      My co-author Matthew Rothenberg and I shared some of our favorite bits of advice from the book…

      …we took your questions…

      …and of course we loved meeting you to shake your hand, sign your book, and give out free 1-month subscriptions to TheLadders!

      (Photos: Cori Rosoff)

      Here are our future dates at the moment:

      City Store Date
      Washington, D.C. Borders, Rockville, MD 9/28
      Philadelphia, PA Barnes & Noble, Rittenhouse Sq. 9/29
      Atlanta, GA Borders, Buckhead 9/30
      Dallas, TX Borders, Uptown 10/1
      Houston, TX Barnes & Noble, West University 10/2
      San Diego, CA Warwick’s, La Jolla 10/4
      Los Angeles, CA Borders, Canoga Park 10/5
      San Francisco, CA Books Inc., Mountain View 10/6
      Chicago, IL Borders, Lincoln Park 10/7

      If you’d like us to come to your town, please drop an email to booktour@theladders.com, and we’ll be sure to let the publishers know. We’ll be adding additional dates to the tour, and cities with the biggest response from our subscribers get first priority!

      If you’d like to pre-order the book online, you can find it here:

      Amazon (currently on sale for $11.46!)


      Barnes & Noble (currently on sale for $11.46!)


      Have a great week, and I’m looking forward to seeing you!

    8. Will you be forgiven?

      ** From my weekly newsletter to TheLadders.com subscribers **
      Lehman Brothers failed and the government bailed out AIG two years ago, Readers, and things haven’t been the same since. It’s been a calamity for the country and for the job market.

      If you’re one of the unlucky ones — just doing your job well when the ax came along and hacked away over 8 million jobs out of our economy — it’s been a period of frustration bordering on despair.

      Some of you were skeptical three years ago when the declining price of black town cars in midtown Manhattan had me calling a recession. But come it did.

      And it’s been hard to find a job these past few years. You know it, we know it, and, most importantly, the companies looking to hire you know it.

      That’s why we’ve been hearing increasingly about “candidate forgiveness,” the idea that a lot of good people are out of work through no fault of their own, and that their unemployment shouldn’t be counted against them.

      But rather than simply throwing yourself on the tender mercies of hiring managers and recruiters, there’s something you should do about a period of unemployment during this “Great Recession”: make lemonade out of lemons. That is, take the bad situation and turn it to the best advantage you possibly can by demonstrating that you’ve used the hiatus to become even more valuable to your next employer:

      • Volunteer your way to a new job. Volunteerism equals networking, education and activity. Working deeply with one charity, church, or philanthropic organization is preferable to spreading yourself too thin. Involvement that is substantial, particularly in a leadership capacity, has many similarities to full-time work and can be presented in a similar light on your resume.
      • Take classes or get accreditation. If your field has a hierarchical series of professional acronyms, now’s the time to do the work without having to squeeze it in between a full day at the office and full weekends at the soccer field. And using this time to get caught up with Microsoft Office 2010, or improving your understanding of finance, marketing, sales, or technology issues related to your industry can only make you look like a go-getter.
      • Choose contract work wisely. If your goal is full-time employment, try to get contract opportunities that show off your best skills and that support your personal brand. This will give you relevant and up-to-date accomplishments to discuss during your interviews.

      Bottom line: Don’t let grass grow under your feet. If you’re a self-starter who turns adversity into opportunity, all will be forgiven!

      Have a great week, I’ll be rooting for you…