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Stories by Richard M. Knappen

G.I. Joe needs a job

The case for hiring ex-military.

The unemployment rate for former military is reportedly more than 10%, which higher than the national rate. This is a tragedy. One of the factors contributing to this high rate is that folks in the ...

Your next coworker may be a robot?

A new wave of job automation is coming.

Robots are here to stay, and according to many experts they will take over many more tasks in the coming years. Where are robots used? They are everywhere. They have been in the automotive industry ...

Don’t call them soft skills

More important than any degree are these life skills.

A true professional is one who learns every aspect of the job, and who exhibits appropriate behavior at all times.

Join the club

The benefits of professional association membership.

Associations vary as much as the industries they represent. Most provide resources for their members, including networking events, education, industry research, publications, professional services, and perhaps job listings. These events may be face-to-face, which is ...

A smile, a handshake, a positive attitude

These are the beginnings of your self-marketing plan.

When a company produces a new widget, that is is the culmination of months or maybe years of research, development, design, and manufacturing. But the work is not over yet. When a software company designs ...

What should Bernice do?

Bernice recently lost her job. Her email said, “I have been working for a long period of time, and I am enjoying my time off, getting my house in order, and taking care of my ...

How hot is your network?

It's hotter than you probably realize

There are many studies that have been compiled for decades on techniques that people use when they are conducting a job search. The one job search method that has consistently ranked at the top for ...

Military personnel storm the job market

Military personnel are worried. They hear the news. They watch television. They hear terms such as sequestration, cutbacks, downsizing, rightsizing, reduction in force. Soon, we may find that many former military personnel are in the ...

The conformity curse

If you are like everyone else, you are sacrificing your individuality, your goals, and your uniqueness.

Don’t mess up a job interview with a shabby appearance

Every employer’s crazy about a sharp-dressed man… … (or woman.)

Wear little or no cologne or perfume. What smells good to you may not smell good to the interviewer.

Be the next great American entrepeneurs

Follow the example of these greats

Starting with two bicycles and $100 in capital in 1907, James E. Casey went on to build United Parcel Service.

Effort is not enough

Job searches require smart strategy as well

While older workers are less likely to be laid off than younger workers, they arre about half as likely to be rehired.

How Would Your Close Friends Describe You?

And other tricky interview questions.

Why would a company ask questions specifically designed to probe a potential employee’s honesty? The answer is that employers are experiencing a great deal of employee theft. The U.S. Department of Commerce estimates that employee ...

Tell Your Story, and Tell It Well

Not sure you have any examples, stories, or incidents that are applicable? Nonsense. Everything that has happened to you in your professional life is a story.

Look at Your Interview From the Employer’s Point of View

The manager is interested in your attendance record. Do you frequently call-in sick, arrive late, leave early?

A Blooper Reel of Résumé and Interview Blunders

Here are some résumé, application, and interview blunders which employers have shared with me. They would be amusing if they weren’t so tragic, and so avoidable: We received a résumé written in long-hand on three-ring ...

Your Future Job May Not Exist … Yet

Does advancing technology hurt jobs prospects for the long term? Although in the short term advancing technology does indeed make some jobs obsolete, the additional productivity then leads to reduced costs. In turn, this enhances ...

Latest Import from China: Jobs

The “reshoring” of jobs begins.

According to a survey by The Boston Consulting Group (BCG), more than a third of U.S.-based manufacturing executives at companies with sales greater than $1-billion are planning to bring production back to the USA from ...

Toxic Beliefs That Lead To Personal Failure

In his book As a Man Thinketh, philosopher James Allen says that one is what one thinks, with character being the complete sum of all one’s thoughts. And upon analysis, one wonders how those thoughts ...

Be Your Toughest Critic

The Importance of Honest Self-Assessment of Job Interviews

How did your last job interview go? Did you receive a job offer? No? Could it be something that happened in the job interview process? Sometimes we need to think through the job interview and ...

Time to Assess Your Work/Life Balance?

Does your life seem like drudgery? Do you feel tired and burned out? Are you easily upset or angry? Or is your life filled with happiness and positive thoughts? Are you excited at the prospect ...

Old Guys (and Girls) Rule

Older employees outperform younger workers. So why aren’t they hired more often?

A Job is Your Destination But Do you Know How to Get There?

If we know where we are going, we are more likely to get there. A job search is the same. If one has a written goal, a direction, the possibility of achieving that goal is ...

Welcome to the New Age of the Job Search

In these tough economic times, one needs to expand the thinking; one needs to become flexible to changes in the ways in which a job search is conducted, and to open one’s mind to new ...

Do It Now! Do It Right

A positive work ethic includes how one feels about one’s job, career or vocation. It also is reflective of one’s attitude toward responsibility and self-respect. This attitude involves behavior, respect, communication, interaction, integrity, and how ...

The Building Blocks of Success

What is success? It is what you want to achieve. It is to be the best at whatever you want for yourself; to set a goal for yourself, and constantly strive toward its attainment; to ...

Stay on Target!

Focus Your Search And Increase Your Chances.

We are in the “Information Age,” and Wow!! that has helped the job search candidate, such as you. It is much easier these days to compile research information on industries, companies and decision makers than ...

A Raise? During a Recession?

It’s Not Impossible, But You Have to Work For It.

If you are known as a person who gets things done, one who takes on additional responsibility outside of your job descriptions with a positive “can-do” attitude; if you are one who others look to ...

Confidence Is Contagious.

So is lack of confidence

You have been answering job openings on the internet job boards for several weeks or months. So has everyone else. You have answered dozens of openings, and have had very little, if any, communication from ...

Merry Christmas, and Happy New Job

Is the holiday season, Thanksgiving through New Year’s Day, a bad time to do a job search? A common misconception holds that the holiday season is a time for the job search candidate to take ...

Myth Busters: Job Search Edition

I have been in the employment industry for several years, and over the years I have come to realize that there is a vast difference between what most people believe works in a job search ...

What Kind of Leader Are You?

Thrust into a leadership position? Need to make important decisions quickly? Are others looking to you for inspiration, focus, motivation, mentoring, coaching, guidance? You make decisions, and others follow? Are you a leader? A group ...

Be pleasant. Be positive. Be upbeat.

Hurrah! You have been called for a job interview. A generalist from the human resources department performed an initial interview with you over the telephone, and now you have been invited to come to the ...

What is the Toughest Interview Question You’ve Ever Heard?

Interviews are the screening process that companies use to determine whom to hire. Are there other considerations other than the job interview? Yes. However, effective interviewing is vitally important to success in your job search. ...

Résumé Questions Answered: Should I Include My GPA?

With graduation just completed at many colleges and universities, and new graduates preparing to jump into the job market, a question that often arises is: “Should I show my GPA on my résumé?” If there ...

Profit Is Not a Dirty Word

Though some vilify the concept, profit is the key to a healthy job market

Perhaps the most misunderstood and most vilified concept in the private sector business world is profit. For many uninformed people, the word “profit” brings visions of vicious robber barons or greedy tycoons bent on stealing ...

The “Experienced Only” Problem

If you have been searching for a new job you have probably run across phrases such as the following, which I’ve taken directly from published job openings: Minimum of 10 years EXPERIENCE in property management, ...

The Land of the Rude

A survey entitled “Land of the Rude: Americans in a New Survey Say Lack of Respect is Getting Worse,” by author Samantha DuPont for Public Agenda, a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization, reports that most Americans surveyed ...

Big Job Creation By Small Business

Politicians talk about it. Business executives talk about it. The unemployed and underemployed certainly talk about it. What is it? It is job creation. And job creation typically comes from small, profitable companies. According to ...

There are More Job Listings for Accountants than for Historians

Why spend years of your life, thousands of dollars, and tons of effort only to graduate from college and not be able to support yourself adequately for the rest of your adult life? How sad. ...

Whether Traditional or Social, Networking Is Still the King

…and you already have a bigger network than you think.

In these days of modern technology, job search candidates are looking toward Twitter, My Space, Linkedin, and similar sites for job leads. Have they helped? Yes they have. Does that mean that traditional job search ...

They Offered You a Job. Now What?

As the economy recovers, job search candidates are finding that they have a new and exciting challenge on their personal horizon: a job offer that requires their evaluation, and an answer for the potential new ...

They Were True Leaders. Are you?

Have you ever worked for a manager whose management style was so positive you wanted to go out of your way to do a good job for him/her? If that manager was able to generate ...

Don’t Just Answer Questions. Ask Them.

You are near the end of a job interview. You have almost completed an hour-long conversation with the “Ultimate Decision-Maker,” the president and chief executive officer, who turns to you and asks, “Now, what questions ...

Affirm Yourself

Everyone engages in self talk. For most folks, self talk is negative talk conducted over a lifetime, which only adds to our self doubt. In his excellent book The 25 Sales Habits of Highly Successful ...

3,800 Résumés …and More Arriving Daily

The human resources director of a local San Diego company placed an opening on one of the internet job sites. The ad was placed for a three-week period. After approximately two and a half weeks, ...

Signs Point to Recovery and Recovery Means New Jobs

Leading economists are saying that the “Great Recession” of the last three years may be coming to a close, and that business, hiring, and the economy should be better in the coming year. Let’s look ...

The Seven-Second Job Interview

That’s all the time you get to make a first impression.

Your first impression takes an average of just seven seconds, according to author and lecturer Lydia Ramsey. A study recently completed by the University of Toledo psychology professor Frank Bernieri maintains you have 30 seconds ...

AngryChick@gmail.com Is Not an Appropriate Job Search Address

Conducting a job search should involve doing it correctly. Listed below are some easily avoidable job search mistakes you must avoid making as you look for a new position. Making a Bad First Impression Start ...