Wednesday, April 4, 2012

The Life-Force of Success

If there’s one thing I’ve come to appreciate more than anything else this past year, it’s the value of hard work.

Hard work pays off. Hard work is about takling obstacels one at a time to chip away at big goals.

When people ask me how I’ve ended up where I am today – my first response is “hard work”.Yes, there’s more to it than that, I’m also extremely fortunate to be where I am, but above all I work hard – nights, weekends, whatever it takes to do great work.

The value of hard work cannot be substituted. It's the life-force of success. It’s also the biggest deficiency for most people. The lack of desire to work hard, especially in a society that demands immediate gratification, holds us back.

Don’t let it. Hustle through all of those late nights, work-filled weekends, failures, and successes. You’ll learn more about yourself and you’re capacity to succeed than you ever thought possible.

Moment of truth: How has hard work paid off for you this year? What are you working toward right now?

Monday, April 2, 2012

Solve A Problem

Before you take another step in your job hunt, answer this question: "What problem are you trying to solve?"

If there’s not something lacking that you are going to provide, why should an employer want to hire you?

People need to see a problem to be moved.There must be an inciting moment. For me, I saw a need to serve those around me. It was the "why" not the "what."

Seth Godin once described the difference between marketing Aspirin and vitamins. Aspirin, he said, is much easier to sell because it solves a problem - your headache. Vitamins, on the other hand, don’t resolve an immediate, blaring problem. They’re a harder sell.

How can you reframe your application for a specific position as the solution to a problem? When you offer the solution to a problem, employers awaken to your potential.

Your skills, experience and expertise must address a problem. Every employer looking to hire has a problem. Understanding that problem and providing the solution to that problem qualifies you as the best candidate for the employer to hire.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Outdistance Yourself During Spring Break

Achieving your goals often requires you to delay pleasure. It's difficult, but worth doing.

Now is the perfect time to attack some of the simple mechanics of a job search. You have a week free of lectures, student organization meetings and school requirements. Why not take the opportunity to break apart from the pack?

Here are five things to do instead of wasting away your break:

  1. Update your resume and develop the working structure of a cover letter.
  2. Reach out to local industry experts and set the stage for a low-risk experiment.
  3. Develop a professional online presence (LinkedIn, Twitter, etc.).
  4. Conduct a few informational and interviews and refine your sweet spot.
  5. Send a Thank You note to everyone who has helped you get to where you are today.

There you go! Five simple steps that could have huge payoffs at a later date. They wont occupy your entire break and you'll be that much closer to your desired results.

Enjoy your break!

Monday, March 12, 2012

Get Called To The Big Leagues

Chances are if you've tried a few low-risk experiments, you've found your sweet spot and have determined the value you bring to an organization. Don't stop here.

Keep refining, practicing and committing yourself to topping your past performance. Don't wait to be given permission and don't expect any favors.

When the time is right, you'll be called to the big leagues (land a job) and when you do, return the favor by helping those around you achieve their dreams.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

How Badly Do You Want Success?

Those who are hungry, driven and committed will create opportunites to improve themeselves. Success requires drive, determination, and persistance. Understanding that defeat comes far in advance of success is neccessary.

Understanding that failure isn't final is critical. Success will come when you least expect it and only after a firm commitment to doing the work.

Monday, March 5, 2012

Low-Risk Experiments

Trying sushi, a new outfit and going on a blind date are all low-risk experiments.
So is an internship.

Chances are you've never experienced the practical application of your eduction. If you wait to approach a specific field or industry without experience, you might find that you have no joy in performing the tasks centered around education and expertise. Even worse, you may find your chosen field repulsing. Seeking low-risk opportunities to explore is the key for long term happiness.

Try new things, document what works and refine your focus moving forward.

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Simple Doesn't Always Mean Easy

Most everything in life can be classified into a simple process. There will always be time tested principles, today's latest trends and a multitude of noise as you approach the beginnings of life beyond college.

Everything that is necessary to secure a job is simple. Taking action and following through is difficult. Success requires dedication, determination and the ability to be decisive.

The mechanics are simple.

Start early, build upon your past experience, and plan. Develop a killer resume, write a persuasive cover letter and wait for an employer to draw the conclusion that your the ideal candidate.

It's not rocket science.

The razzle dazzle is in your ability to be persistent-- to execute and follow through when everyone else is content to only initiate.