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JSM Career Coaching Blog – Page 2 – Career Advice from a Job Search Strategist

Ask a Career Coach – #30DS Day 8

Today I want to introduce a new video series, “Ask a Career Coach.” Today my guest is Laini. Laini is a ton of fun, in addition to being an active jobseeker here in the #DC area (hint, if you’re hiring, she is looking!).

We will hopefully be answering some of your pressing job search related questions! Thanks for joining us, and please let me know what are the questions you’d love a Career Coach to answer!

And if you are curious about what it would look like to work a Career Coach for yourself, please don’t hesitate to message me and let me know!

Day 8 of #30DS #AskACareerCoach #LinkedInLocal #DC #VA #networking #ProfessionalsCorner #OrganizationalTips #ONO #careers #LinkedIn #InItTogether

Originally posted on LinkedIn here.

Organizing Your To Do Lists – #30DS Day 7

I love to-do lists! Even more, I love scratching things off my to-do lists! (And yes, I have added items to my lists, just so I could scratch them off. I admit it!)

Many of my clients get overwhelmed with HOW MUCH there is to do in a job search! The to-do list might feel a mile long.

One super easy and VERY EFFECTIVE trick I do for myself is to categorize my tasks. After brainstorming and brain-dumping my master-list out on paper, I categorize similar tasks together. I usually have a Call Sheet (phone calls), Email list, writing projects, and so on.

Then I block specific chunks of time on work on those specific categories, at the times that fit the best. Phone calls are obviously best done during the day and not 11pm at night. But emails and writing projects? I can do those anytime. Writing projects I schedule for chunks of time where I not going to be constantly interrupted. My “to be read one day” folder is perfect for when I’m stuck in line at the DMV.

Each week I go through my calendar and see where those various categories might best fit.

Large-scale projects I might choose to make my major focus overall for a week/month, until it’s done. (Hint: my taxes took a month. Ugh. Time to possibly outsource that next year.)

At the gym, commuting, or folding 18 piles of laundry? I have a long-overdue list of podcasts to listen to.

Plus: I always have random stash of to-do in my bag for those random, in-between, moments. Stuck in the carpool line? Waiting for an appointment? Pull out that industry magazine I’ve been working my way through. And so on.

With a little bit of organization, this categorizing your to-do list and “block chunking” of your calendar can work perfectly for you as well – whether it be to further your job search OR ongoing career goals!

Day 7 of #30DS #ProfessionalsCorner #OrganizationalTips #ONO #jobsearch #jobseekers #careers #CareerCoach #LinkedIn #LinkedInLocal

Originally posted on LinkedIn here.

Burying the Lead – #30DS Day 6

Are you burying the lead in your LinkedIn profile?

LinkedIn profiles are set up in such a way that you often have to click “see more,” or scroll down to find all of the content.

Let’s face it; people WON’T do this unless you make them WANT to!

“Burying the Lead” is a newspaper concept (back in the days when folks read actual newspapers!) that you LEAD with the lead concept. You don’t build up to the main point or moral of the story; you START with the main point, and the rest of the article is there to back it up that point.

Why? Because readers might not read the whole article, so they won’t GET THE POINT if you don’t lead with it!

The same goes for your entire LinkedIn profile:

*Do the first two lines of your summary MAKE someone want to “see more”?

*Do your accomplishments in each job description make them want to know MORE about what you’ve done?

If you bury your lead and no one reads it, then what is the point of doing all that great work in the first place?

How else can you “lead with your lead”?

If you would like to learn more #LinkedIntips, feel free to message me about my #LinkedIn webinars! (See, that’s burying the lead!)

Day 6 of #30DS #LinkedIn #jobsearch #jobseekers #ONO #careercoach #LinkedInTrainer #InItTogether #ProfessionalsCorner

Originally posted on LinkedIn here.

DC Area Networking List – #30DS Day 5

I’m working on updating my “DC Area Resource List.” This is my personal list of great local networking opportunities that I share with jobseekers and “career growers” in my network. I try only to list the groups that I have personally vetted, OR has been vetted and recommended by a close contact (primarily in the Northern VA or DC areas).

Here are my just a few of my personal favorites:

#LinkedInLocal (in DC and #LinkedInLocalNoVA)
Website: https://linkedlocally.com/
Northern VA group: http://www.linkeduplocalvirginia.com/
DC group: https://www.meetup.com/LinkedIn-Local-DC/
A fairly new phenomenon, #LinkedInLocal is a new movement and meetup concept focused on connecting humans locally on a global scale. The goal is to help professionals to connect in person with other LinkedIn users in their local community. As a new CoHost of the #LinkedInLocalNoVA group, I’m obviously a huge, huge fan!

Career Confidence –
Website: http://www.career-confidence.org/
MeetUp Page: https://www.meetup.com/career-confidence/
LinkedIn Group: https://www.linkedin.com/groups/8138722
***I am highly active in this group and am a huge fan. It is run by active recruiters and a strong emphasis on networking in its meetings. Speakers are carefully screened, recruiters are regularly invited, and is open to any industries. It has a high reputation and is well regarded in the area.

Women in Technology
Website: http://www.womenintechnology.org/
LinkedIn Group: http://www.linkedin.com/groups?gid=55459&trk=group-name
***Don’t let the name fool you. At least in the DC area, I’m told this group is open to males and females, and even those not in technology. They also host “career” events and “meet the company” events, that my contacts have raved over.

Email: CNortonNet@aol.com
Article about group: http://www.recruitingblogs.com/profiles/blogs/in-praise-of-nortonnet
NortonNet  consists of a very active listserv of about 3,000 members in the DC area (many have an Intel and military background). In addition to all the emails that go out on available positions, available job seekers, and upcoming events, NortonNet holds a bi-monthly networking luncheon at Maggiano’s in Tyson’s Corner. This group consists of many different kinds of professionals, but the bulk of them are interested in government contracting opportunities.

What groups do you recommend to others in the #NoVA and #WashingtonDC area? Which groups should I check out?

Day 5 of #30DS #networking #ONO #jobseekers #jobsearch #careercoach #InItTogether #careers #LinkedInFam

Originally posted on LinkedIn here.

Who to Follow – #30DS Day 4

There is SO MUCH content on LinkedIn that it can be easy for GREAT CONTENT to get buried! So today I wanted to recommend my favorite folks that I follow myself!

Guy Berger, – He’s the “LinkedIn Stats” guy for me (and y’all know I love stats). He breaks down random economic jargon into actually useful information. When he shows up in my feed, I always pay attention!

Liz Ryan – I just like her straight up, no-nonsense approach on all job search topics, and almost radical approach to our industry.

Ben Rea – creator of the #30DS challenge!

Jon Meadows, – a local photographer with great tips/thoughts about pictures here on LinkedIn, plus an all-around nice guy!

Rod Ferrier, @Meg Miller – my new partners-in-crime in our #LinkedInLocalNoVA group!

Robert Brandau – Leader of the local jobseeker group Career Confidence, which is THE BEST local jobseeker group in the area, bar none!

Laini Fultz – She’s sweet, wicked-smart, fun, and she’s looking for a job – so everyone check out her profile and her content! Introduce her and refer her to those hiring! Somebody snatch her up before she’s gone!

Who do you guys pay attention to?

Day 4 of #30DS #LinkedIn #contentcreators #networking #LinkedInLocal #InItTogether #ONO #jobsearch #jobseekers #careers

Originally posted on LinkedIn here.

My Why – #30DS Day 3

Today’s challenge is to tell a personal story about why you do what you do. So here is part of my story that I don’t actually think I’ve shared before.

On 9-11, in New York City, after the horror, after spending hours running/walking/trudging through streets and finally, making it home very late that evening, I lay in bed thinking, “There is more this than this.”

I realized that job that I ran out of our building from early that morning – that life and those career goals – made no positive difference in this world. I had not focused on improving the lives of those around me, of being a light, or bringing good into this world. My goals at that time were fairly self-centered, though not intentionally so.

And so, I thought, “there is more to this than this.”

Now, of course, it took me a lot longer to figure out exactly what that turned into for me! It really was a journey to discover this calling I have now. My first inkling was when I was recruiting, and a candidate sat at my desk talking about how he needed help getting a job because he just wanted to keep a roof over his kids’ head and food on their table. A lightbulb went off. THIS. This is how I could make a difference and help others.

Through a couple more twists and turns that eventually morphed into the Career Coaching I do now, I still keep that in mind. My passion is to help and to improve the lives around me. To make the world just a little bit better place. Career Coaching is just the gift I’ve been given to do that. Sometimes that may be on a grand scale like speaking in front of a large group. Often it’s in the one-on-one individual interactions of client relationships. Occasionally it’s through the non-profits and organizations I now support.

I would love to hear from you. How do you improve the lives of those around you? Make the world a better place? Why do you do what you do?

Day 3 of #30DS #careercoach #networking #LinkedInFam #whatsyourwhy #LinkedInContent #LinkedInCreator #ONO #jobseeker #jobsearch #LinkedInLocalVA

Originally posted on LinkedIn here.

Keep Motivated – #30DS Day 2

How do you keep yourselves motivated through the peaks and valleys?

Of course, the uphill climbs and peaks naturally spur toward new motivation

because you can feel and see forward progress towards your goals!

The slumps though – not as easy.

It’s harder to see

when you are

in the valley.

Your view gets blocked

when trudging through

the morass.

But don’t despair!

Keep moving forward.

You have to come down off one hill in order to be able to climb the next!

That valley you are in today is just the step you take BEFORE your next uphill rise!

(Do you see what I did there? With the peaks and valleys of the lines? 🙂 )

Day 2 of #30DS #LinkedInLocalNoVA #motivation #jobsearch #InItTogether

Originally posted on LinkedIn here.

Starting a New Challenge – #30DS Day 1

Starting a new challenge. Trying something new. It can be intimidating.

Having a motivational support group makes the difference between goal success and goal failure (aka. the Weight Watchers model). We know this. We join exercise classes, fitness groups, and professional business associations and more. Why? Because “groups” bring community, they bring motivation and support, and those things encourage CONSISTENCY. And consistency is what BRINGS RESULTS.

I love this about the #30DS concept. (https://lnkd.in/dHjuYBJ) It’s not just what to write each day, but it’s also a support group with a common goal – to using sharing here on LinkedIn as a way to connect and grow. I’ve been observing for a while, the participants are an encouraging bunch!

Maybe you look at this “LinkedIn thing” and know you’re SUPPOSED to post “stuff” but are too overwhelmed to start. This challenge is for you.

To practice what I preach, and with the belief that I should never ask anyone to do anything I’m not willing to first do myself, I’m finally getting started in my own #30DS experiment. I love directions and timed challenges. I’m super excited and extremely curious to see what this 30-day challenge brings.

Day 1 of #30DS  #LinkedInContent #LinkedInCreator #ONO #jobseeker #jobsearch

Originally posted on LinkedIn here.

In-Person Group Coaching Sessions in Tysons Corner, VA Area Now Available!

My Group Coaching Sessions are finally here! Sign Up Here Now! (If link doesn’t work for you, please go to https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/MRTJ6VH to sign up!)

I am very excited to be able to now offer in-person, monthly Group Coaching Sessions through JSM Career Coaching! Please sign up (with name, email, and phone) for your topic of choice, through the link above.

All coaching sessions will be offered in the Tysons Corner, VA and meet once a month on Fridays at lunchtime. Cost just $25 a month with prepaid 3 and 6-month packages! ($35 monthly automatic payment also available.) Minimum of 4 participants required. SIGN UP NOW – SPACE IS LIMITED TO 10 MAXIMUM!

1. Goal Setting Accountability Group – Open to all, this coaching group will be focused on individualized, specific goal setting, and then supporting/celebrating each other as we work toward accomplishing our goals!

2. Personal Development Accountability Group – Open to all, this coaching group will share and support each other as we each focus on development of our personal goals and career journey. Topics will vary and will be based on group need and interest.

3. Professional Women Career Coaching Group – Creating a safe place for professional women to build and grow their careers.

4. Time Management and Work/Life Balance Accountability Group – Open to all, this coaching group will focus on supporting each other as we try to create better work/life balance through time management and other career coaching focus topics.

5. Professional Women Career Book Club Group – Using a “book club” format, we will read career-related books each month and discuss. Focus will be on sharing, supporting, and applying lessons learned from each book.

6. Create Your Vision Board Event – (This would be a one-time event, most likely in the evening, cost/date/time TBA.) Signing up indicates interest, but no commitment until date/time announced!

Email me at JulieMendez@jsmcareercoaching.com with any questions, or if you need additional information!

Great Job Search Articles Thursday!

Great Job Search Articles Thursday

Welcome to a new regular blog feature: Great Career and Job Search Articles Thursday. Each week I will share a few items I’ve found and recommend you check out:


  1.  How To Complete Online Job Applications Without Revealing Your Salary
  2. How to Get on a Recruiter’s Radar
  3. Technical writing on LinkedIn just got better: Now you can embed code


If you see a career or job-search article you enjoy, please let me know! It might join my recommended list next week!