Business, Economics and Jobs

Job-seekers: Join the club

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(Image: Flickr user SOCIALisBETTER (cc: by-nc-sa))

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Almost six million people are currently unemployed in the United States. Trying to get a job in a volatile job market is proving so difficult that some job searchers are turning to professional help.

Catherine Palmiere is a veteran in the employment business, working with companies and employees for over 28 years. In the current economic climate, Palmiere found that her headhunting business was going down, but her coaching business going up. She now heads a job-seeking networking group.

In a session on resume writing, Palmiere told attendees to stop thinking of their job search as a "job search."

"I say that's in the past. Throw all of that out. I want you to start thinking of your job search as your marketing campaign," said Palmiere.

For a one-on-one interviewing and resume-writing coaching session, expect to pay about $165. Palmiere's club meets as a group and each member pays only about $30.

One club member, who invested about $1,500 in her job search so far, says she considers it her job while she's out of work. "You can't just keep on holding to all the money and fretting about 'I don't have a job' ... you do have a job. You have a job of searching for a better job for yourself."

Another club member who worked in real estate and has been unemployed for two years, says her first career coaching experience, "was well worth it, because I didn't know about [things] like blogging. I had heard the expression, I had no idea ... and if that works, it's worth anything ... and I'm desperate for a job."

On the subject of blogs: Palmiere's has this list of questions, which she describes as, "a guide to perform your own investigation and create solutions":

* You may think you have a great resume, but it is generic? Does it show your value?

* Is your cover letter generic? Have you taken the time to personalize it for each opportunity?

* Are you taking the time to send thank you notes to everyone you interview with?

* Do you have a good web presence?

* Have you removed negative items, friends and photos from your Facebook profile?

* Are you showing up in staffing firms late, not completing applications or not well dressed?

* Is it possible that you are appearing cocky or over confident to your recruiter?

* Are you using too many recruiters, instead of building a relationship with a trusted few?

* Have you forgotten to bring a separate sheet with your references?

* Have you forgotten to turn your phone off during an interview or taken a call? (A real no no.)

* Are you applying for jobs that you are not qualified for?

* Are you depressed or feeling downcast and going into interviews that way?

More of Palmiere's blog here.

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