By Jim Dittbrenner
I sat in MOAA’s Business and Networking Group (BANG) meeting last week. Their program, “Present Yourself with Courage and Confidence” was an excellent reminder of the simple yet often overlooked elements of getting the offers you want when in the job search mode. The presentation by a leading TAP Facilitator, Janet Spadola, took those in the audience in the search mode through the steps simply and directly. For those in the audience not in the search mode, the presentation was a quality reminder of using those same elements in the everyday activities of a professional.
The bottom line of the program and its approach to job search can be summed up simply and directly as Attitude and Fit. Truly simple, yet very much to the point. The points are those that have been successful for years and continue to be the successful elements.
Most importantly to keep in mind are the following:
- Know what it is I want to do.
- Identify and research those employers where I would be proud to be an employee.
These elements allow me to be seen as a probable fit, allowing the hiring process to proceed. Then, knowing what I bring to the employer, what the employer is looking for (in my area of my career field) and comfortably discussing:
- Knowing my skills and strengths and being able to state them clearly and quickly, with examples of each. This is the STAR (Situation, Task, Action, Result), PAR (Problem, Action, Result), CAR (Challenge, Action, Result), or RAP (Result, Action, Problem) series of statements.
- These are wrapped into my conversations (a Business Conversation rather than an Interview) when meeting with potential employers. I can introduce my opening remarks when meeting with potential employers by saying “I’m hoping to make this a quality business conversation.” This sets the stage to allow everyone to be more natural in a situation that is not normal for most of us.
- Developing comfortable yet focused 30 Second Sound Bites that include several Achievement Statements (STARs, PARs, CARs, or RAPs). Each of these sound bites needs to be delivered comfortably from the heart, not the mind. These are going to be used as I meet others in the “interview process,” as well as in normal networking situations.
Sound Bites are the single most used element of all networking, not just when in the job search mode. As I move forward in my networking, I need to be sure to follow up with those I have connected with, letting them know my status. Also, being sure to follow up with those who have provided me with new contacts, letting them know how the contact worked out.
The counsel presented at the program, and above, allows us all to be ourselves, be confident in who we are and in our approach to others. Confidence based on knowledge shows, and it works to our advantage.
Make it a great month ahead.
About the Author
Jim Dittbrenner is the owner and managing partner of D&A Industries. He strongly believes in service to his country and community. A second generation Army mustang, Jim works with transitioning military and their families in helping them find employment. This is his “pay it forward.” https://www.linkedin.com/in/jamesdittbrenner