Mistake #1 – Relying on Job Boards

•October 27, 2008 • Leave a Comment

Mistake #1 – Relying on Job Boards

Almost everyone begins their search by going to the job boards – CareerBuilder, HotJobs, Monster, etc…  What you probably don’t know is that only approximately 6% of people ever find their job through these boards! Here is why they are massively inefficient in getting you connected with the job you want:

1)      How many times have you called about a position you see on the web only to find out it has been filled or put on hold?  Many of the jobs are not real. The postings are often outdated having been pulled directly from company websites or ATS (Applicant Tracking Systems – internal databases companies use to track anyone who applies to a position).  These systems are notorious for not being updated with current position status or information.  There is also the technique of putting multiple jobs on the web to “harvest” resumes.  This is a very cost-effective way for companies to build out their ATS/database to save on paying search firm fees.  But, it leaves you chasing a position that doesn’t exist.

2)      How many times have you applied for a position  knowing you were a perfect fit and still never received an email or call about it?  Too often, your information goes into one of these ATS/databases and sits along with the hundreds of other resumes.  The internal recruiter, to no fault of his/her own, has hundreds – sometimes thousands – of resumes presented against the position.  On top of that, the recruiter is handling an average of 30-40 openings   They then rely on the ATS/database to sort the matches of all those who applied against the position.  It is a roll of the dice as to whether or not your information will ever even be looked at!

There are ways to work around this.  After years in the executive search business, I am taking what I know about the inner workings of corporations to work one-on-one with people looking to build the career they deserve.  Join me for – Avoiding the 10 Biggest Job Search Mistakes – where I discuss this challenge and nine others…as well as my One-on-One Coaching Program where we will work around these hurdles to get you the career you deserve.

Kevin is the Managing Partner of Hammer Consulting and CEO of Kevin Kermes Inc., a company devoted to empowering professionals with the vital tools and information necessary to find the job they want and build the successful career they deserve.  Sign up for his free e-zine – Build the Career You Deserve – for insider tips on how to do just that!


Fixing the Bad Resume You Don’t Know You Have

•October 10, 2008 • Leave a Comment

Yesterday, I hosted a 30 minute webinar about some of the biggest mistakes I see people making with their resumes – and how to remedy them.  The session was recorded and you can watch it on our website.   I hope you enjoy and please let me know your thoughts and questions!

How to Change Careers in Mid-Stream

•October 3, 2008 • Leave a Comment

I wanted to quickly share a link to yesterday’s webinar – How to Change Careers in Mid-Stream.  This lin will take you to our website where you can watch the video in its entirety.  It focuses on some key points to consider when looking to make a career change and is very timely for anyone who has been effected by the recent financial markets’ turmoil.

Random Interviewing Tips #1

•September 28, 2008 • Leave a Comment

I plan to periodically post some random tips for interviewing on this blog.  These will come in spurts – sometimes a single thought and other times a stream.  I would recommend signing up for the RSS Feed to take certain you get them in real time.  Also, take a look at our Free Webinars and Videos on topics relating to interviewing and your job search


1)      When interviewing for a sales position, make sure your resume and cover letter DO NOT INCLUDE phrases like “Big Game Hunter,” “Closer,” or “Top Sales Guy.”  Instead, use metrics to illustrate your achievements:  “Ranked 2 out of 15 in my region” or “Achieved 125% of a 2.0 million dollar quota” or “Made President’s Club 4 out of the 5 past years.”  Quantify and qualify your achievements with numbers, no adjectives.


2)      Do not talk about pipelines in an interview.  Stay focused on deals closed and percentage of quota achieved.  No one wants to hire the sales professional that “almost” got it done.  Whether you realize it or not, by doing this you are actually detailing your failures – not achievements.


3)      Speak to the position for which you are interviewing.  One thing I will hear sales professionals say often is how they are really “big picture guys.”  If you are interviewing for a strategic position (sales leadership, Alliances, BD, etc.) then this sounds sophomoric and cliché.  Again, get into the details of what you have done (words versus deeds).  If you are interviewing for an individual contributor position, a statement that is off target like this will paint you as someone who is seeking this job as a stop gap.



**Having trouble getting the results you want out of your job search?  Contact me today to discuss our individual coaching programs**

Avoiding the Ten (10) Biggest Job Search Mistakes

•September 18, 2008 • 2 Comments

Yesterday, I hosted a 30 minute webinar about some of the biggest mistakes I see people making in their job searches – and how to remedy them.  The session was recorded and you can watch it on our website.  Do not worry about the screen staying green, since there really was no video to compliment the audio.  I hope you enjoy and please let me know your thoughts and questions!

Taking the TIMED Approach When Selecting Your Next Opportunity

•August 12, 2008 • Leave a Comment

In our last webinar, we discussed using our TIMED approach in selecting the right sales opportunity for you. The feedback was extremely positive, so I wanted to share this with our readership again here. The goal in using this approach is to have a system by which you weigh and select the best opportunity for you:

(1) Technology – Selling a unique solution is extremely important. But, while a key element, just remember: great technology with poor leadership will be trumped by good technology with great leadership every time. History consistently repeats itself here.

(2) Income- Most get mesmerized by this one, but should really be more focused on the other four components. Without strength in those four, that base of 130K and OTE of 300K will translate into a W2 of around 150K. After fourteen months, you will not have achieved your unrealistic quota and be back out on the street looking for a new position. Adding insult to injury, you will have to explain why you didn’t hit your numbers during your interviews and won’t have money in the bank to cushion a transition in selecting the right next job.

(3) Management – Choose a great manager who can be a mentor too. We cannot emphasize this enough! This will be the #1 reason you have the chance to exceed your number and grow as a sales rep/sales engineer/sales manager.

(4) Executive Leadership – Your great manager, exceptional sales skills and great technology are going nowhere if the captain of your ship is clueless.

(5) Details – Are you the 4th rep in the territory in the past 4 years and the previous 4 did not make their number? The devil is in the details.

Career Swamp – Avoiding the Easy Path

•August 7, 2008 • Leave a Comment

Taking on challenges is sometimes described as “character building.” As cliché as this might sound, we take it a step further. It is vital to your livelihood as a sales professional. By taking the easy road, many end up with jobs that are bringing no value from a professional, much less personal, growth standpoint. For them, the path of least resistance becomes a career swamp.

Having interviewed thousands of sales professionals, we have seen two consistent traits in those who have had exceptional sales careers. First, from an early age they sought out challenges. This can be seen in the courses they chose in school, the sports they played and, ultimately, the jobs they took. Second, when they no longer feel they are being challenged, they move on. As professionals, this is spawned by poor leadership, no advancement, poor training, inferior products, no income growth or lack of job excitement. Often, this means leaving a position where they were exceeding quota for a new challenge.

As executive search professionals, the second point is always met with the question: “Why does he/she want to leave such a lucrative position?” Our response is simple: for a new challenge. They are confident in their abilities to succeed in anything they set out to do. Moreover, the successful sales manager relates all too well. Borrowed from our favorite little green Jedi master, they adhere to the philosophy of: “Do or do not. There is no try.”

If you are continually seeing your peers pass you by, don’t be afraid to make a change. This may require you stepping outside of your comfort zone, but this is how we grow and evolve. With children, we are constantly encouraging them to broaden their horizons and try new things. As adults, the principle still applies.