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Telephone conferencing/interviewing – look at your participant

That title sounds a little weird, I’ll admit. But I’m going to describe a simple technique I use that makes talking on the phone much easier. You can use this for phone interviews, telephone conferences, or just when you’re talking to somebody.

If you can find a picture of the person you’re talking to, and if you’re using Outlook, this is really simple. Essentially, you just grab the person’s photo, and stuff it into a contact record in Outlook. Then, while you talk, you can have the person’s picture on your desktop. I find that it makes it much easier to talk to somebody else that way – especially if you haven’t met the person. Continued…

Posted in Job seekers, LinkedIn.

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Some of the unexpected pleasures of blogging

When I first started writing my blog, I never expected to find the incredibly warm and friendly reception I’ve gotten from other bloggers. In a world where hostility often seems to reign, it’s been a blessing to find a dedicated, friendly, and seemingly innocent (which is to say not yet fed up with the nasty world) cadre of participants. For those of you who lived through the 60s and 70s, this is like going back into the hippie era where peace and love were the words of the day.

Today, I found that the comment system of my blog wasn’t working. This area demonstrates both the best and the worst of the Internet today. The worst: I get dozens of spam comments every day. Can you believe people waste their lives doing this? Most get caught in Akismet, the WordPress spam filter. But I found a nifty way to make it work even better at stopforumspam.com. Continued…

Posted in Reviews.

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How to download your LinkedIn contacts to Excel

You should keep a backup copy of your LinkedIn contacts, and since it’s easy to do, you should do it now!

Why?

First, because LinkedIn isn’t perfect, and sometimes they lose accounts. Sometimes they decide you’re violating their rules and close your account intentionally. You really need that contact list on a local storage device just in case.

Second, you may want to use your LI contact list to send emails to your contacts. For example, I create and send quarterly newsletters (you can sign up on my home page – the grey box on the right side). While I don’t use my LinkedIn connections for this, it’s probably something I should consider. Continued…

Posted in Job seekers, LinkedIn, Personal branding.

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LinkedIn, your resume, and your personal brand

Should your LinkedIn profile be the same as your resume? I think so – but only if you have a good resume. I’m going to explain my reasoning in this post.

Brand, brand, brand

One of the most essential components of any branding effort is consistency. That’s why every Coca Cola product has the same logo. It’s a simple concept really, seeing the same thing over and over cements the image you have of that product (or here, person).

That’s why it’s important to have a picture – the same picture – on all your social networking sites (and on your business card!). The same argument applies to your resume. Your resume – Word version and LinkedIn version – will be more effective if both are the same. And in case you didn’t know it, you can actually download a PDF version of your LinkedIn profile and recommendations that’s pretty nice. I’ve written about how to extract just the recommendations (to send with a job application) here. Continued…

Posted in Job seekers, LinkedIn, Personal branding.

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How to fiddle with your WordPress blog without showing the world your mistakes

Don’t know about you, but I’m naturally curious. So I’ve just installed WordPress on a USB thumb drive. Now I can hack away at it to my heart’s content without worrying about how stupid I’ll look to anybody who stops by my blog.

It’s non-trivial, but if you follow the instructions precisely, you’ll get there. Check out the wonderful instructions I found by searching WordPress.org. This points to videos by “Figaro” (I’d like to tell you his full name, but he doesn’t say what it is…). So if you’re interested, go to the WordPress.org page, and then go watch Figaro’s videos. Continued…

Posted in Reviews.

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Your own personal branding knowledge base

If you’ve started using Google Reader, as I’ve suggested many times on this blog, you may have discovered one of its “hidden” secrets. (Use the search box at the top right of my blog to search for articles I’ve written on Google Reader.)

Google Reader actually creates a personal knowledge base – your knowledge base.

You can search your Reader knowledge base the same way you search for anything on Google, but now it will search through the articles you’ve acquired through RSS feeds instead of searching through billions of pages. That means your results are going to be much more relevant in many cases. Continued…

Posted in Job seekers, Personal branding.

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Competence is sooooo nice

It’s nice to be able to use this public forum to thank people who’ve gone the extra mile for you…

For the past few days, I’ve been struggling with how to set up a blog for a client. Normally, that would be pretty easy, and I even have a hosting service I’ve picked out for this purpose (their link is on my Shameless Commerce page). Continued…

Posted in Reviews.

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Copyright info for your personal branding publishing efforts

My friend Dana Shultz has a wonderful blog, “The High-touch Legal Services Blog,” for people who are starting or running small businesses. You can read it here. (Or subscribe to it using Google Reader and the RSS feed on Dana’s blog. See my articles on Google Reader here and here.) Continued…

Posted in Personal branding.

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Personal brand in place, now use LinkedIn to prospect for jobs and gigs

To rise above the noise level, you have to demonstrate your subject matter expertise. If you’re a regular reader, you’ve heard me say that before, and I hope you’ve taken my advice to heart. But once you’ve got the goods, what’s next?

Stop waiting for people to find you (you’ve already put lots of landing pads out there for their search planes). Now you have to start your outbound effort. And LinkedIn is a good place to start.

Continued…

Posted in Job seekers, LinkedIn, Personal branding.

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How publishing helps your personal branding

This isn’t a new topic for this blog – or for people who’ve worked with me – but if you’re still skeptical about this approach for you, read on…

Today, everyone serious about their career needs to be a subject matter expert (SME). That applies to you job seekers and also to contractors and people who are employed (and remember, every job is temporary). The way you get to be an SME is by writing. If you write enough, and your ideas are good enough, you’ll move from being an SME to being a thought leader. At that point, you are really managing your career. Continued…

Posted in Job seekers, Personal branding.

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