Locating and Landing a Job Archives

“Thanks (Sort of) for the Rejection” – May Actually Be a Good Idea

Published on August 19th, 2014 by Alan L Sklover

“Rejection doesn’t mean you aren’t good enough;
it means the other person failed to notice what you have to offer.”

 –      Mark Amend  

ACTUAL “CASE HISTORIES”: Every now and then I come upon a workplace-related idea that is so simple and sensible that I just can’t help but pass it along to my readers. In a recent edition of Bottom Line Personal magazine, I came across one such idea submitted to the magazine by Susan P. Joyce, President of a company named NETability, Inc. 

Her idea is this: Job applicants who are rejected from a hoped-for position should send “Thank You” notes to their interviewers or Hiring Manager. Why? It seems there are lots of good reasons to do so, among them: 

1. To express gratitude for being considered.  

2. To exhibit your continued interest in working for the company, perhaps in another position or capacity.  

3. To “keep the conversation going.”  

4. To bring up your name to those with hiring authority just one more time.  

5. To stand out from the crowd, that is, the majority who do not say “Thank you.”  

6. To show maturity, humility and depth of personality.  

7. To express continued interest in case the person chosen decides not to accept the position.  

8. To share a sense of disappointment but not one of discouragement.  

9. Perhaps to share a thought about something that came up in your interview.  

10. To illustrate that you are a person who does not “give up” easily.  

11. Because it costs nothing and may be worth a lot.  

12. Perhaps a much better question is: Why not?  

LESSON TO LEARN: When hunting for a job, don’t let rejection get you down. Instead see it as an opportunity to show others that you are not someone who is easily discouraged. If the name of the game is to get a job, keep at it, and if you do so the chances are only increased that you will, in the end, get the job. Say “Thank you.” There’s no downside to it. And keeping in touch sure can’t hurt. Everyone’s been rejected; successful people don’t give up. It’s that simple. 

WHAT YOU CAN DO: If you are rejected for a position you really wanted, by a company you really wanted to work for, in a role you thought would “fit you like a glove,” don’t give up. Don’t give in. Don’t take rejection personally. Instead, give it another shot, and another shot after that. Keep the conversation going. Send a “Thank You” note, and keep in touch. The world belongs to the perseverant. Here are six more thoughts: Read the rest of this blog post »

The “Seeking a New Job Letter” – Often Overlooked, but Highly Effective

Published on November 7th, 2012 by Alan L Sklover

“There is no shame in hitting the canvas seven times,
so long as you stand back up more than six.”   

–       Muhammad Ali  

ACTUAL “CASE HISTORIES”: For over 30 years, we have assisted employees in their job transitions, and that means employees who are losing or leaving their jobs. For the vast majority, that transition is a transition to a new job. So, how do you find a new job? 

There are more ways to find a job than you can count, including internet postings, recruiters, social media, help-wanted ads, networking, college placement offices, networking circles, and too, your Uncle Harry. You never know where your next job will come from. 

One simple, efficient and highly effective tool to help you find a new potential position is the distribution of a “Seeking a New Job Letter” to everyone you have ever met, and others who you have never even heard of. It is simple, direct, rather easy and more effective than you might imagine – provided you do it correctly. 

A few years ago I received a mass-distributed email that expressed something like the following: “I NEED A JOB!!!!!!” To be frank with you, neither I nor anyone else I know who received it felt motivated in any way to assist its sender. It seemed desperate, self-centered, and almost like a demand or entitlement. It worked in reverse. 

Effective “I seek a job” letters are (a) short and to the point, (b) positive in outlook, (c) informative regarding the type(s) of position(s) sought, and (d) express flexibility and gratitude. With these elements in place, a “Seeking a New Job” letter often works, and is highly likely to fulfill its purpose: getting you a new job. 

Effective “Seeking a New Job” letters also embody a sense of self-reliance, a positive human quality in almost every endeavor, for it simply brings out the best in you. 

Should you rely entirely on a “Seeking a New Job Letter” to get you a new job? Surely not. But you would likely be foolish not to make it a significant component – if not a pillar – of your overall “re-employment plan.” 

LESSON TO LEARN: Whenever you do anything of importance, to ensure your success you should first create a plan. We highly recommend creation of a “Re-Employment Plan” for anyone seeking a new job, whether out of work, soon to be out of work, or just seeking greener pastures. A “Re-Employment Plan” should include: (i) a clearly defined “best job” and alternatives to that “best job”; (ii) effective steps designed to help you reach your “best job”; (iii) a reasonable timetable for each step; (iv) a realistic budget for each step; (v) a list of potential sources of support; and (vi) regular progress reviews and, if necessary, adaptation to the plan to continually “steer” you in the right direction.  

Among the most effective steps to gain re-employment – but, sadly, often overlooked – is what we call a “Seeking a New Job Letter.” In its essence, this is intended to let each person you know, have ever known, and even some people you have never known that (a) you seek a new job, (b) what that new job is, (c) alternative jobs you would accept, and (d) that you would appreciate them keeping you in mind. Nothing formal, nothing complicated, straightforward and simple. 

It is inexpensive. It is unlimited in its potential assistance. It is direct. It is far-reaching, indeed, worldwide. It is efficient. It is proactive. It applies to every stage in life: youth, middle age, and “more experienced.” And – most of all – it is effective. Don’t overlook using a “Seeking a New Job Letter” when you are “seeking a new job.” You likely will be pleasantly surprised.  

WHAT YOU CAN DO:  Here are 10 good guidelines for your own “Seeking a New Job Letter”:        

1. Create an email distribution list containing every person you ever met, and even others you have never met. Newspapers, magazines, TV shows and blogs don’t worry about who reads them, and your “Seeking a New Job Letter” should not either. Get the word out, and get it out as widely as possible. You just never know whose brother, neighbor, camp counselor, plumber, daughter, college roommate or distant relative will have the exact job opening you seek.  

2. Do not send a large “email blast,” but instead one email at a time. For a whole variety of reasons, it is best not to send out one large “email blast.” Instead, send out one email at a time. People do not like their email addresses given out to others. Also, a “personal” touch, even to people you do not know, is preferable. Human nature is such that direct contact always makes the recipient feel the most connected with the sender.      

3. Email is not the only means of communication: you might use social media, and other means of digital transmission, as well. While email is our transmission method of choice, don’t hesitate to use social media of all sorts to distribute your “Seeking a New Job Letter.” We do, though, prefer digital transmission for its ease, speed, low cost and ease of response.  

4. Be brief, concise and to the point: one page is best. Want to write a whole book or booklet extolling your virtues, your grades in middle school, your nickname and your favorite hobbies? Fuhgeddaboudit!  That said, if you are fluent in Arabic and are seeking a job in which that would be relevant, by all means mention it. Use a simple and easy-to-read and understand format that is easy on the eyes and easy on the brain. No long paragraphs on your personal philosophy; just what job you seek and why you should be hired. We do NOT recommend using the standard resume format or resume professionals for this effort.   

5. Mention your “best possible job,” and alternatives, as well. If you know what you’re looking for . . . go for it. Goals that are specific are more likely reached. On the  other hand, to broaden your potential for getting employed, you might put in other types of positions you would happily accept.  

7. Exhibit a mindset that is upbeat, positive, realistic, confident, determined and flexible. No matter how dark, depressed or despondent you may feel “inside,” your “Seeking a New Job Letter” must be positive in all respects on the “outside.” People are attracted to “winners,” and are simply turned away from those who portray themselves as victims. Early impressions are lasting impressions: make yours positive.    

8. Avoid both the words and the “music” of drama. Imagine, for the moment, that you met an old friend who had recently gone through a divorce. You say to your old friend “How are you doing?” to which your old friend responds with a 20-minute tirade about how his or her former spouse was unfair, unfaithful and unforgiving. Who wants to listen to that? Well, the same goes for your efforts to secure a new job: no one wants to hear you “shovel dirt” on your former employer. Cry into your beer, but not in your “Seeking a New Job Letter.” 

9. You might mention “The Golden Rule.” Call me old fashioned, if you want to, but I have never ceased to be amazed at how effective it is if you make a person imagine, just for a moment, if he or she was in your shoes, how much he or she would appreciate a helping hand. Consider mentioning your presumption that your letter’s recipient was once, if not more than once, in “your shoes,” and how you know he or she understands and appreciates your present struggle. 

10. Make it easy for people to contact you in response. It never, ever ceases to amaze me how often people send me messages of various kinds but do not make clear mention of how I can best and most easily reach them in response. Put yourself in the “shoes” of the recipients of your “Seeking a New Job Letter,” who has a good job prospect for you, but simply can’t locate you, or has difficulty doing so. That would be a tragedy, and an easily avoidable one. Provide a telephone number, email address, and if appropriate, a Twitter “handle.”    

11. Plan on sending a follow up letter, in the nature of a “progress report,” once every two or three weeks. If Coca Cola and Apple Computer have to periodically remind people of who they are, and what they offer, so do you. While it is not 100% necessary, it is almost always a wise idea to periodically provide your recipients with a follow up letter to keep yourself on their minds. Just like your original “Seeking a New Job Letter” should be, follow ups should also be brief, to the point and upbeat. So often it is perseverance that makes the simple difference between success and failure.  

We offer a Model Memo entitled “Seeking a New Job Letter” that you can use to get the powerful advantage of having scores, hundreds or even thousands of people helping you get employment. This Model Memo can be adapted to your own facts, events and circumstances. And it includes a second, “Follow Up” memo to keep your contacts fresh. Highly recommended. To obtain a copy, just [click here]. 

These 10 good guidelines for your own “Seeking a New Job Letter” can help you get back into the ranks of the employed, at a faster pace, at lower cost and with greater overall exposure, than many other methods. Being unemployed can surely get you “down,” but that’s no reason to stay “down.” This is a proven way to get you back “up.” This method is something you do for yourself, by yourself, costs nothing, and represents great value at no risk. Isn’t that what business – and Sklover Working Wisdom™ is all about?  

Help Yourself With These and Other
Unique NEW JOB Materials

New Job 3: Confirming Basic Terms of New Job Offer
New Job 5: Model Response to Receiving a New Job Offer
New Job 7: Checklist of New Job Items to Consider Requesting/Negotiating
New Job 13: Six Important Elements to Request Be In Your Expected Job Offer
New Job 15: Model Request for Sign-On Bonus
New Job 16: Two Model Memos to Protect Your Book Of Business ("B.O.B.")
Job Issues 5: Model Response to Request That You Sign a Non-Compete

[ Click Here ] and Go to Section "D"


SkloverWorkingWisdom™ emphasizes smart negotiating – and navigating – for yourself at work. Negotiation of work and career issues requires that you think “out of the box,” and build value and avoid risks at every point in your career. A “Seeking a New Job Letter” is a perfect embodiment of the spirit and substance of that process. Now the rest is up to you.        

P.S.: Got a Job Offer, and Background Check is about to happen? Use our Model Letter to Your Former HR, Managers and Colleagues to Discourage Bad References. “What to Say, and How to Say It.”™ To obtain your copy, just [click here.] Delivered by Email – Instantly! 

Always be proactive. Always be creative. Always be persistent. Always be vigilant. And always do what you can to achieve for yourself, your family, and your career. Take all available steps to increase and secure employment “rewards” and eliminate or reduce employment “risks.” That’s what SkloverWorkingWisdom™ is all about. 

*A note about our Actual Case Histories: In order to preserve client confidences, and protect client identities, we alter certain facts, including the name, age, gender, position, date, geographical location, and industry of our clients. The essential facts, the point illustrated and the lesson to be learned, remain actual.     

Please Note: This Email Newsletter is not legal advice, but only an effort to provide generalized information about important topics related to employment and the law. Legal advice can only be rendered after formal retention of counsel, and must take into account the facts and circumstances of a particular case. Those in need of legal advice, counsel or representation should retain competent legal counsel licensed to practice law in their locale. 

Repairing the World –
One Empowered and Productive Employee at a Time ™

© 2012 Alan L. Sklover, All Rights Reserved.

Grads Without Jobs – Here’s 10 Ideas to Help You

Published on June 15th, 2009 by Alan L Sklover

“Tis looking downward makes one dizzy.”

– Robert Browning

ACTUAL “CASE HISTORY”: Many of our friends, clients and colleagues have recently shared with us stories of recent college and grad school graduates unable to find jobs. Some grads who had job offers in hand have now had those job offers deferred, or even rescinded. It’s not surprising, given the state of our economy. But it remains disturbing to see so many educated, eager and hopeful folks facing difficulty getting started in life.

What should a recent grad do? Are there many steps that an unemployed graduate can take to help him or herself? Are there any helpful hints anyone can offer them?

For many years we have counseled and represented employees seeking new employment. Over that time we have developed a seven-step method we teach our clients, and others at our seminars, to help them negotiate and “navigate” employment matters. While the overall seven-step method was not intended to be used by first-time job seekers, it’s first step holds the key, we believe, to what grads without jobs should do.

What is that first step? It is to assess, and build, your “Unique Human Capital” (or “UHC” for short.) A person’s Unique Human Capital is that set of attributes that make that person valuable to an employer, and uniquely so. Your UHC might be: (a) your ability to speak Mandarin Chinese; (b) your intimate knowledge of what drives the wholesale market for sugar; (c) the fact that the CEO of the company’s biggest client was your best buddy from summer camp; (d) your natural ability as a saleswoman; (e) your fame as an organic chemist. It’s something (or somethings) about you that make you stand out as a source of “value” to your interviewer.

Read the rest of this blog post »

New Job, New Industry, Leaving Friends: Is It Worth It?

Published on May 19th, 2008 by Alan L Sklover

An Award Winner!!

Best Question of the Month

Boy w/ arms in the air

Congratulations, JERRY!! Our WorkingWisdom™ Staff has chosen your question as “Best Question of the Month.” Simply email us your local mailing address, and we’ll send you a free gift: an autographed copy of Mr. Sklover’s book, “Sklover’s Guide to Job Security.” Each month, our Staff chooses a Winner, and each month we send out a copy of one of Mr. Sklover’s books. We hope you’ll come back soon and submit more questions, more comments, and become a member of our WorkingWisdom™ “family.”

Question: I have worked for a financial services company for 15 years , and received an offer to work at a pharmaceutical company. The compensation is the same. However at the new firm, most of my compensation will be my base salary, versus a considerable year-end bonus at my present job. The new position seems to offer growth and a new challenge, while I feel I have reached a plateau in my current position.

I am concerned about leaving the relationships, friendships and the long length of service I have with the financial services firm. How important is long term tenure versus starting fresh? I am in my mid-forties.

Jerry, Newton, PA

Answer: A great question. One of the best. Best thing about your question is that it doesn’t have one simple answer. The question you have presented is this: “How important is long term tenure versus starting fresh?” The natural follow-up question is this: “Important to WHAT?” That’s what you need to ask yourself:

If, most of all, you are seeking work that will keep you interested, excited, passionate, growing, young, alert and perhaps healthy, you should seek out new positions, opportunities and challenges that offer something different and challenging. On the other hand, if most of all, you are seeking work that will keep you comfortable, among friends, happy, perhaps a bit bored, and perhaps a bit unchallenged, stay put; don’t make a move.

It’s a matter of what you are seeking most of all. Like I wrote, “Important to WHAT?” That is, what is most important to you?

A new job in a new industry offers new things to learn, and new ways to find out what you like to do most. A new job also affords you an opportunity to develop new friendships, and new relationships. And don’t forget: moving jobs doesn’t necessarily mean giving up old friendships.

Making a transition from one job to another, and one industry to another, is both frightening, and exciting, at the same time. It’s both intimidating, and exhilarating, at the same time. You have to consider what’s important to you, and the answer of what to do will come to you.

Of course, you should look before you leap: speak with others who have made the transition you’re considering, or one like it. Speak with your spouse or partner. Most of all, “talk with yourself” about what’s important to you. Look before you leap, but don’t be afraid to take a good leap. It’s a common adage that “In the end, you’ll regret more things you didn’t try, than the things you did try.” Being in your mid-forties, if you don’t try now, or soon, chances are you never will.

Your question is a great one, and one that many people think about, but few actually consider seriously. Hope this helped focus your thoughts a bit.

Best, Al Sklover

Job offer on the way? Be proactive – get a copy of our Model Memo Suggesting  Six Important Elements be Incorporated into  Expected Offer Letter. Shows you “What to Say, and How to Say It.™ To obtain your copy, [click here.] Delivered by Email – Instantly! 

Help Yourself With These and Other
Unique NEW JOB Materials

New Job 3: Confirming Basic Terms of New Job Offer
New Job 5: Model Response to Receiving a New Job Offer
New Job 7: Checklist of New Job Items to Consider Requesting/Negotiating
New Job 13: Six Important Elements to Request Be In Your Expected Job Offer
New Job 15: Model Request for Sign-On Bonus
New Job 16: Two Model Memos to Protect Your Book Of Business ("B.O.B.")
Job Issues 5: Model Response to Request That You Sign a Non-Compete

[ Click Here ] and Go to Section "D"

New Graduates Should Seek “The Three Ex’s”

Published on May 20th, 2005 by Alan L Sklover

“The Three Ex’s”
– Primary Objectives for the New Grad

ACTUAL CASE HISTORY: Jaynie, 21, a journalism major at a large Southeastern university, was growing increasingly anxious about “what to do with her life.” Her college years were rapidly drawing to a close. Lots of her friends seemed to know exactly what they wanted to do, and were starting to do it. Some were proceeding right into graduate schools of one type or another; others were starting in what they thought would be “the job of their dreams.” Some were going to work for family businesses. Jaynie just didn’t have a narrow career focus. In fact, she didn’t seem to have any at all. For years she had asked herself, “What do I really want to be?” but the right answer just never came to her.

Though Jaynie wasn’t a client, and wasn’t likely to become one for quite some time, I enjoyed talking with her about her real concerns, and possible dreams. I shared with her a few of the things I’d learned over years of counseling and representing my successful executive clients the age of her parents, and even some the age of their parents, too, regarding career success and job security:

Read the rest of this blog post »

Alan L. Sklover

Alan L. Sklover

Employment Attorney
and Career Strategist
for over 35 years

Job Security and Career Success now depend on knowing how to navigate and negotiate to gain the most for your skills, time and efforts. Learn the trade secrets and 'uncommon common sense' of Attorney Alan L. Sklover, the leading authority on "Negotiating for Yourself at Work™".

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