THE BUSINESS CASE

February 27, 2017

I belong to a group of job developers who meet monthly to network and to have various employers tell us what would solve all their HR problems. Somewhere in the last two months, I agreed to give a talk at the meeting to a larger bunch of employers. Apparently they want to me to tell them about the secret life of job developers: what we do, what we eat for breakfast, and why can’t we get real jobs for ourselves.

I thought that it I were an employer, I wouldn’t want to hear any of this. It would be dreadfully boring and would confirm their suspicion that we are only in business for networking opportunities. If I could read minds, I could hear the employers thinking, “What have I done to deserve a time wasting meeting like this? He’s not solving any of my problems and he’s not telling me why I should hire his clients.

Thanks employer. I’m glad you’ve given me the opportunity to consider the business case for hiring a job developer’s clients.

Generally a client has a job developer for a number of reasons:

  • They may be unemployed
  • They may have a physical, mental health or developmental disability
  • They may be older workers
  • They may have been in prison
  • They may be immigrants
  • They may be youths
  • They may be people in an industry targeted to receive help because there is little work in that industry
  • They may have been unemployed for years and now find they are in a position of not having a clue how to get back in

Each job developer has representatives of most of these clients on their caseloads at any time. It is incumbent on the JD to present their clients in the best light possible, and the best way to do this is to describe the business case for hiring them.

  1. They will prove to be loyal.

Our clients know what it is like to be unemployed, and on becoming employed, they will do anything to stay on the job.  They will work hard, be punctual, and be well behaved.

  1. They might be flexible.

Employee flexibility usually means two things. They are able to work part time or full time, or they are able to work night shifts.. Some clients who have mental health disabilities may not be able to offer work at night as it may have an negative effect on their medication. They may however, be getting financial support from the government, and able to earn a living wage by working part time and not having their disability cheques docked.

  1. They may be eligible for a wage subsidy or training allowance.

Wage subsidies help employers cover the high costs of training any employee. It is money paid to the employer on the promise that the position will result in long=term employment.

  1. They may already be trained.

Many job developers work at agencies that provide funding to train people who are unemployed or underemployed. Training  is a strategy to get people working in areas where they have interest and skills.

  1. They can help with your company brand.

People actually feel good about dealing with your company if there is someone with a disability cleaning your lot or pushing buggies around your grocery store. When people feel good, they spend more money

  1. They can help enhance your company culture

I once had a client who trained to be a legal secretary, but she could only type 35 WPM, but she did this by putting the keyboard on the floor and typing with her toes because she didn’t have any arms.  When I finally placed her in a law office, my occupational therapist found something that would make her life in the office better – an automatic hole puncher she could operate with her toe. When I came to deliver the machine, the whole company was in the lunch room having a chicken wing party, and there was my client in the middle of it all with her toes in the bowl of wings.

  1. Job developers can help you access new employees.

Suppose your company wants to hire a fabricator and you come to a job developer because you wish to capitalize on all of these benefits. Suppose again that that that job developer is me. I don’t think I have had a fabricator on my caseload for years, however, I can take your posting and distribute it amongst the forty or so job developers. There is a strong likelihood that we, as a team can help you with that placement.

  1. We can help with job retention.

Job developers are not going to place a client and run away. We have an obligation to help our clients keep their jobs after placement. We follow up with the client,  and we follow up with the employer. One strategy is to meet with the employer and the employee during the three month performance evaluation. Are they doing what they said they were going to do in the interview. Is there any friction to be smoothed out.

Is there anyone out there that can help me during my performance review?

  1. The bottom line.

There are over 300,000 people in our province that have declared they have disabilities. There are probably more immigrants and lots of older workers. They all have friends and families. They also communicate with each other, and if it is learned that your company has hired a person with a disability, that can open up a floodgate of new customers to access your goods and services.

The next time your company is in a recruiting position, consider using a job developer to help you access our clients.

Mike Broderick , a one- time archaeologist, is a Vocational Rehabilitation Counsellor with the Fraser Health Authority in Port Coquitlam where he helps people with mental health disabilities find and keep full or part time employment .

He WAS the Employment Specialist for the Neil Squire Society in Burnaby where he found employment for people with physical disabilities, A Supported Employment Coordinator at THEO BC (now the Open Door Group), and a case manager at Community Fisheries Development Centre where he helped people move from the fishing industry to something else because there, “Ain’t no fish.” This means he is VERY familiar with how a modern day resume should look.

He is a newly retired ambassador with the Vancouver Board of Trade and a former member of the Labour Task Force of the Burnaby Board of Trade He does some work as a field Archaeologist, is a fitness instructor and frequent contributor of fitness humour articles to Alive Magazine. He is always saying, “If you can’t be fit, you can at least be funny.”

He lives in Port Coquitlam with his spouse Cecelia. You can reach him at home at michael_broderick@telus.net  or at 604-464-4105. If you’re looking for a career change, he is the Spin Doctor and can give you a resume makeover at competitive rates

 

 

MAKING THINGS GREAT AGAIN

January 29, 2017

Last week, one of my resume writing colleagues and LinkedIn group contributor John Sattler commented that he noticed a bit of a slowdown in work to mark the first month of 2017. While I haven’t noticed it myself, as I keep myself busy by doing value added work for my existing clients (such as updates and web profiles etc.), I can see where an issue like this could be blamed on Donald Trump.  Everyone is procrastinating and waiting for America (and every other Western country by default) to be great again.

Job seekers are waiting to return to the days when they won’t need a resume to get a job. America was great when all one had to do was write their names on a paper shopping bag or the inside of a cigarette package to score that dream job. Now only plastic bags exist, and nobody smokes.

In short, if there is a slowdown in work, it is due to client procrastination as clients are guilty of lazy career management. Lazy career management will ultimately hobble Trump’s greatness imperative. More proactive career management involves frequent updates. People should be showing employers new resumes almost weekly to avoid hearing the words that made Trump famous in the first place. “You’re fired.”

If you want to advance in the company rather than being thrown under it, people will need clean and fresh resumes that itemize all the great work they’ve been doing. These should be taken out at annual reviews just in case the boss has other ideas of your performance.

Greatness will mean constantly looking over your shoulder to see who will be coming after your job next. I predict a lack of old fashioned scruples as they are replaced by alternative facts and other truthiness stretches. Facts can only be stretched so far when they appear as if they have fallen into a black hole.

To hold a job in this era of greatness, you will need a permanent spin doctor.

As far as your resumes are concerned, everyone will need several updates, because while those little orange hands on the wheel of the economy, there may be rough roads ahead. You’ll want to make sure your well stocked with versatile resumes with lots of alternative facts and lo lies.

Meanwhile, if you are a resume writer, it’s time to diversity those skills as well. You’ll need to add some tricks to your trade to stay on top of your client’s needs. Here are a few things to add to your portfolio:

  • Rather that write resumes for clients to get a job, think on a more grandiose scale. Think branding where you use the resume to get people to develop emotional attachments to your client
  • Learn the difference between a resume on an employer’s desk and a LinkedIn profile on the internet, and start writing them
  • By a camera and learn to take photos of your clients. Honestly, don’t trust your clients to take brandworthy pictures of themselves. They’ll be sitting at their desks and holding their heads up with their hands under their chins. Employers search for signs of strength in LinkedIn profiles. There is nothing strong about holding your head up
  • Or they’ll photograph themselves with a selfie stick and not smile. A smile evokes trust and truth. It is better to show some teeth in the smile. There is both trustiness and truthiness in toothinsess
  • Or they’ll take out-of-focus cell phone photos with their phone on a selfie stick clearly visible in the picture
  • Or they’ll fit the picture into the desired space by pointing the curser on the edge and moving the border’s edges around making their heads contort to amoebic shapes
  • Or they’ll use pictures of the dogs or their cats to stand in for their integrity. These are probably ones you should drop. They might be animal abusers.

Mike Broderick , a one- time archaeologist, is a Vocational Rehabilitation Counsellor with the Fraser Health Authority in Port Coquitlam where he helps people with mental health disabilities find and keep full or part time employment .

He WAS the Employment Specialist for the Neil Squire Society in Burnaby where he found employment for people with physical disabilities, A Supported Employment Coordinator at THEO BC (now the Open Door Group), and a case manager at Community Fisheries Development Centre where he helped people move from the fishing industry to something else because there, “Ain’t no fish.” This means he is VERY familiar with how a modern day resume should look.

He is a newly retired ambassador with the Vancouver Board of Trade and a former member of the Labour Task Force of the Burnaby Board of Trade He does some work as a field Archaeologist, is a fitness instructor and frequent contributor of fitness humour articles to Alive Magazine. He is always saying, “If you can’t be fit, you can at least be funny.”

He lives in Port Coquitlam with his spouse Cecelia. You can reach him at home at michael_broderick@telus.net  or at 604-464-4105. If you’re looking for a career change, he is the Spin Doctor and can give you a resume makeover or a profile overhaul at competitive rates.

 

IF AN IQ DOESN’T GET YOU THAT JOB, WHAT WILL?

December 27, 2016

An article by reporter Faye Flan in the Vancouver Sun this morning questions the role of IQ in being successful in landing a job.  Citing James Heckman, an Economics guru from the University of Chicago, “Many people fail to break into the job market because they aren’t measured on intelligence tests. They don’t know how to behave in job interviews. They don’t  understand how to behave in job interviews. They may shoe up late or fail to dress properly.”

Heckman proposes that personality may be a greater factor, where a candidate shows signs of diligence, perseverance and discipline. Other factors may include good study habits in school, the ability to collaborate, and, of course, luck.

In my practice of helping people with mental health issues, I like luck as an overriding factor to success in job search. The best part about luck is that there is absolutely no way to measure it. John Forbes Nash tried this in developing the fundamentals if Game Theory, and he got himself into real trouble. (His story is documented through Russel Crowe in the movie “A beautiful Mind.”

I have had several examples of people who found work who, by modern standards of so-called job readiness, should never have been hired.

These include:

  • A fellow who was in the middle of a 10 year sentence for bank robbery who began a career in social work by first volunteering with me, then working for me helping people in emotional crises in the community. These days they would be weeded out through a criminal record search. In this person’s case, I, as the employer, wanted him, and I got him. Thus, a new career was born.
  • A teenaged fellow, who, mid-way through his interview for a warehouse job, pulled out a bag of chips and a pop and had his lunch. I suppose that was in response to the question, “Tell me a little bit about yourself.” The HR person  phoned me and said she liked his originality and decided to hire him.
  • A middle aged man who lives aboard a fishing vessel who always smelled of deasil fuel and usually showed up to meetings with me with popcorn woven into his hair who successfully landed a position in a training program to be a set decorator in the motion picture industry.
  • Me! I came in late for my interview at Fraser Health, and afterwards I noticed I had my shirttail hanging out my fly. I got the job, and I still have it.
  • Me! After 13 years as a professional and world-famous archaeologist, I found a job as a street worker working with runaway teenagers. My chances of scoring that job would be akin to my landing a position as a surgeon.

For these reasons, I consider a major variable in achieving success. Your job, as a job seeker, is to try to find creative ways to lure luck out of hiding. I won’t say that it would be advisable to show up late with your shirt tail hanging out your fly, but as Popeye once said, “I am what I am.”

Instead of relying on wardrobe mishaps, here are some other things you can do to lure lick out of hiding.

First, Go into your interview prepared to ask some important questions about your prospective position. This means research. Start by googling the company or agency.

  • Find out the key members of the management team. This will make it possible to answer questions such as:
    • Is there anything  you wish to know about us. This will give you the opportunity  to ask:
    • What factors make you the top 10 agencies/companies?
    • What would be the qualities pf the best person for the position?
  • Are there any theoretical or philosophical aspects to the work? I learned that the job I do follows a model developed at Dartmouth Psychiatric clinic in New Hampshire. That was useful in answering questions about what would be my practice
  • Go there before the interview and scout out what people are wearing . Try to dress a little better at the interview
  • After the interview, make sure you have the name and email address of your interviewer, or the names and email addresses of everyone on the panel that interviewed you. Compose and send a thank you note for them. Timing for this is critical. Ask whether there is a timeline they are following for interviews. If they say they hope to make a decision on Friday, send it by Thursday. Often employers interview the also-rans last. This is a good time to remind the employer of you.
  • Feel secure in the fact that probably nobody else will write to them probably.
  • Make sure your shirt tail isn’t hanging out your fly.

Mike Broderick , a one- time archaeologist, is a Vocational Rehabilitation Counsellor with the Fraser Health Authority in Port Coquitlam where he helps people with mental health disabilities find and keep full or part time employment .

He WAS the Employment Specialist for the Neil Squire Society in Burnaby where he found employment for people with physical disabilities, A Supported Employment Coordinator at THEO BC (now the Open Door Group), and a case manager at Community Fisheries Development Centre where he helped people move from the fishing industry to something else because there, “Ain’t no fish.” This means he is VERY familiar with how a modern day resume should look.

He is a newly retired ambassador with the Vancouver Board of Trade and a former member of the Labour Task Force of the Burnaby Board of Trade He does some work as a field Archaeologist, is a fitness instructor and frequent contributor of fitness humour articles to Alive Magazine. He is always saying, “If you can’t be fit, you can at least be funny.”

He lives in Port Coquitlam with his spouse Cecelia. You can reach him at home at michael_broderick@telus.net  or at 604-464-4105. If you’re looking for a career change, he is also the Spin Doctor and can give you a resume makeover at competitive rates.

 

FOLLOWING RULES

December 12, 2016

The other day I was listening to an interview with an insurance guy on the radio. He mentioned that if you have an extra non-related person staying in your house, you should tell the insurance company. It should only cost a few dollars more. It’s better to do that, because if you have a fire, and there is an undeclared person staying at the house, they could and probably will cancel the insurance.

Cecelia and I have been trying to try to add to our coffers by taking in an older woman who has a physical and developmental disabilities for this we get rent, also an allowance to look after her. The money is good, and because she is from the government, she is tax free income – or so I thought.

It must have been an omen. In the day I had a nightmare that I was leading a mindfulness class that happened to have Donald Trump in the front row. I told the insurance broker about this. The company we were with, for $1500 per month and $500 deductible withdrew coverage. They said I was not allowed to have Donald trump in my class.

So much for following rules. The broker found us another company that agreed to underwrite us for double the premium and double the deductible. I don’t think I can even claim this on Income Tax, because the whole business of fostering a person with disabilities  is supposed to be free from taxes.

… Or so I think.

… Or so I’ve been told.

Just watch. I’ll claim the insurance difference then go to jail for 20  years for tax evasion.

At least that way I can stop wondering what to do in retirement

Mike Broderick , a one- time archaeologist, is a Vocational Rehabilitation Counsellor with the Fraser Health Authority in Port Coquitlam where he helps people with mental health disabilities find and keep full or part time employment .

He WAS the Employment Specialist for the Neil Squire Society in Burnaby where he found employment for people with physical disabilities, A Supported Employment Coordinator at THEO BC (now the Open Door Group), and a case manager at Community Fisheries Development Centre where he helped people move from the fishing industry to something else because there, “Ain’t no fish.” This means he is VERY familiar with how a modern day resume should look.

He is a newly retired ambassador with the Vancouver Board of Trade and a former member of the Labour Task Force of the Burnaby Board of Trade He does some work as a field Archaeologist, is a fitness instructor and frequent contributor of fitness humour articles to Alive Magazine. He is always saying, “If you can’t be fit, you can at least be funny.”

He lives in Port Coquitlam with his spouse Cecelia. You can reach him at home at michael_broderick@telus.net  or at 604-464-4105. If you’re looking for a career change, he is the Spin Doctor and can give you a resume makeover at competitive rates

SQUEEZING BLOOD FROM STONE

August 29, 2016

In case anyone missed it, August 2016 has been a was a red letter month in archaeology. One muggy afternoon a couple of weeks ago I was coming home from work. The CBC afternoon show was on, and host Stephen Quinn interviewed Dr. April Nowell about her work in Jordan about her excavations in Jordan.

She recovered thousands of Paleolithic stone tools and subjected them to the rigours of residue analysis and discovered that people 250,000 years ago were using that site to butcher everything from ducks to rhinoceroses.  She determined this by looking at the residues on stone tools and finding traces of proteins – likely from blood. She used a protocol called immunochemistry to determine this.

At this point I pulled my car over so I could listen more intently from a parking spot I found along the Lougheed Highway in a no parking zone – a small price to pay in the furtherance of science .

It seems that back in the early ’70s I was involved in a similar pursuit with stone tools. I identified traces of blood, fat, pitch and amino acids from stone tools. These gave information on how and on what stone tools were used. My big interest was finding out how sites were used. I also wanted to find out whether  butchering was done on raw or cooked material. My preliminary findings got me the bum’s rush to graduate school. My committee there wanted more. They wanted me to take it to the species level, and the only way to do that was to do immunochemistry, which meant using animals, most likely rabbits. I read several protocols on research with animals, and learned that I would need to euthanize them after I get them to produce  the antibodies necessary to make an identification. One rabbit equals one animal species. I had hundreds of thousand bunnies occupying my dreams –more than I could eat in a lifetime. Actually, they had to be killed and incinerated after use.

So much for ethics. I couldn’t justify their forced demise in the interests of an armchair science.

From my illegal parking spot, and with a Mountie pulling up behind me, I screamed at the radio, “What animal did you use, April? What did you use, Dr Nowell?” Dr. Nowell is made of sturdier stuff that I. She used goats.

I told the Mountie I had engine trouble.

Finding residues on stone tools did have the effect of shaking up archaeological methodology. Back then, it was common practice for scientists to lick off their tools after they pull them from the ground. That stopped. Nobody wanted to be accused of contaminating artifacts.

A lot of scientists followed my lead as they were intent on warning people not to scar artifacts with their trowels while excavating. It ruins their microscopic analysis. It got to the point that archaeologists were buying  plastic shovels and buckets from beachside drugstores to safely extricate their artifacts.

A soon to be professor  Anthropology Department  at my old Alma Mater told me over a few pops in the student pub, “Why do you do yourself and everyone else a favour and leave the amino acids alone.

I suppose I did.

Mike Broderick , a one- time archaeologist, is a Vocational Rehabilitation Counsellor with the Fraser Health Authority in Port Coquitlam where he helps people with mental health disabilities find and keep full or part time employment .

He WAS the Employment Specialist for the Neil Squire Society in Burnaby where he found employment for people with physical disabilities, A Supported Employment Coordinator at THEO BC (now the Open Door Group), and a case manager at Community Fisheries Development Centre where he helped people move from the fishing industry to something else because there, “Ain’t no fish.” This means he is VERY familiar with how a modern day resume should look.

He is a newly retired ambassador with the Vancouver Board of Trade and a former member of the Labour Task Force of the Burnaby Board of Trade He does some work as a field Archaeologist, is a fitness instructor and frequent contributor of fitness humour articles to Alive Magazine. He is always saying, “If you can’t be fit, you can at least be funny.”

He lives in Port Coquitlam with his spouse Cecelia. You can reach him at home at michael_broderick@telus.net  or at 604-464-4105. If you’re looking for a career change, he is the Spin Doctor and can give you a resume makeover at competitive rates

 

CAREER ADVICE FROM AN ARCHAEOLOGIST TURNED EMPLOYMENT COUNSELLOR

July 17, 2016

I received an email the other day from a writer, comedian and speaker who thought she might do well in life by helping other people identify their dream jobs and helping them get there.

 

In other words, she was looking for a source of material. I basically told her that employment counselling is a great source for the following reasons:

  1. Everyone can relate to it
  2. When someone is unemployed, finding humour in the predicament can be useful and therapeutic, and probably shorten their job search time
  3. The process of getting a job is a process of learning how to tell a story (For example, “Tell me a little bit about yourself.”)
  4. The process of getting a job involves public speaking (For example, “Tell me a little bit about yourself.”)
  5. Work is funny.
  6. Employers are funny – especially when you nail their hard hats to the floor
  7. Co-workers can be a riot.

She went on to tell me that she had career assessments before and they always pointed towards her being a coach or a counsellor. Here’s how I answered her:

Hi There,

Thank you for your thought provoking question. The trouble with thought provoking questions is that you have to think to answer them. Therefore it took me a few days to answer yours.

I too have had career assessments before they somehow all lead me to thinking my best job would be a priest. That is exactly what an uncircumcised heathen such as me would climb a mountain to avoid.

I also avoid helping people by administering tests for them. I once had a group of older men with barriers to employment when I worked for a school board. I gave them at least 10 tests all aimed at helping them select some careers that would match them in several different directions. I suppose it was my own religiosity that confused the issue, but they all went out and did information interviews with undertakers.

For me, the best assessment is a resume. I can help a client establish where they’ve been, and help them get to where they want to go from  there. That, to me, is the essence of coaching. Then I spend the rest of my time with them either keeping them on track with their goals, or modifying the goals as we go along.

That’s also where the humour comes from. If you don’t believe me, follow my own career. I went from being an archaeologist to an employment guy. When I think about it, probably someone made a mistake when they opened the door and let me in. I rarely take holidays. I have a feeling that someone might change the locks on the doors when I’m gone.

Employment always involves stories. Some are funny and some are serious. I find, like you, that helping people find employment is an excellent source of humour. Everyone can relate to it. Everybody works if they can, and if they can’t, well that’s where I come in.

The problem is that there are a lot of people in the field. There are courses you can take to get into somebody’s program or other. Generally speaking, however, is that you have to learn how to do assessments whether you believe in them or not.

There are, however, other branch of the same thing, and the fields seems to be wide open. That means nobody is doing it. One of them came to my attention when I was working with a client who had diabetes. She took a general coaching course, became certified, then aimed her skills directly at people suffering from diabetes. She helped them stay on their meds, and got rich in the process.

Another one came to me as I was working with a policeman who had come to the end of his career and needed some help assessing his skills through constructing and embellishing a resume so he could work part time in his retirement. he now enjoys life in security.

I also keep running into older workers who want to get back into the labour market. Their big problem is explaining away long periods of unemployment. I train them to tell their interviewers, “Retirement didn’t work for me.”

Mike Broderick , a one- time archaeologist, is a Vocational Rehabilitation Counsellor with the Fraser Health Authority in Port Coquitlam where he helps people with mental health disabilities find and keep full or part time employment .

He WAS the Employment Specialist for the Neil Squire Society in Burnaby where he found employment for people with physical disabilities, A Supported Employment Coordinator at THEO BC (now the Open Door Group), and a case manager at Community Fisheries Development Centre where he helped people move from the fishing industry to something else because there, “Ain’t no fish.” This means he is VERY familiar with how a modern day resume should look.

He is a newly retired ambassador with the Vancouver Board of Trade and a former member of the Labour Task Force of the Burnaby Board of Trade He does some work as a field Archaeologist, is a fitness instructor and frequent contributor of fitness humour articles to Alive Magazine. He is always saying, “If you can’t be fit, you can at least be funny.”

He lives in Port Coquitlam with his spouse Cecelia. You can reach him at home at michael_broderick@telus.net  or at 604-464-4105. If you’re looking for a career change, he is the Spin Doctor and can give you a resume makeover at competitive rates

 

 

FROM THE STREET TO THE COFFEE ROOM

July 10, 2016

A few years ago there was a crisis amongst all of the employment agencies in the Province. Some agencies lost their contracts, and some kept them. From my perspective, it was the luck of the draw. Many lost their positions. I was one of them. In the midst of all this, one person had the foresight to prepare for the worst.

She called me up one day to say that she had her resume schmooshed.

“What?” I asked.

“{ had it schmooshed,” She said, and went on to explain that she took out all the unnecessary information.  Employers these days don’t want to spend all their time reading. They want the bare essentials.”

I disagree with this, but I accepted her offer to send it to me along with her old ‘full figured’ resume. Here’s what happened when it came in. Everyone in my agency read it, and some even called her back to five her opinion of the old and new resumes.

Some people even sent her resume to other agencies. Before long, she had a new position because she demonstrated that she knew how to market. The new resume was irrelevant. The important part is that she found a way to get her resume(s) read and her name known.

When times are tough, it’s time to develop some creative strategies to get from the sidewalk to the coffee room, and from the coffee room to the boardroom.

I have a client who recently graduated with a degree in planning. She had some practicum experience from her academic programs, and she is trying to get her name known by volunteering at a couple of places that do planning and community engagement.

Unfortunately, all the jobs that are advertised demand five to seven years’ experience.

I have been working on the employment side of social work for about 25 years now, and I am ready to share a few things that I’ve learned along the way. The most important of these tidbits is the Law of Speculative Employment

This law is made up of three sub laws: 1) You have a right to apply for anything you want to. 2) The worst that can happen is your application gets filed in recycling. 3) If you ask for money, you usually get advice. If you ask for advice, sometimes you get money.

At some point in my career I asked for a position as an employment counsellor. I spent most of my life as an archaeologist digging holes in the ground. Someone saw my potential, and someone probably made a mistake. (Actually the person who hired me had a degree in archaeology as well. The point is, if I hadn’t applied I’d still be digging ditches.

Every time you put in an application, you risk getting the job. If you don’t get it, try again. If you do get it, try to live up to the expectations you propounded in your interview.

Finally, after the interview, write a thank you note. Tell them that you hope you answered their questions to their satisfaction, but also, if their busy, make an offer to do some contract work for them. After all, you’re an archaeologist. You can do anything. You can even ask if know of any other positions in the field

WRITING A SPECULATIVE COVER LETTER:

It the job requirements want five years and you have less than that, try our hand at writing a speculative cover letter. All you need to do is change the first sentence:

“In response to your recent advertisement for a planner, I submit mu resume. I would like to be considered a qualified applicant for the position.”

Becomes:

“On speculation that there may soon be an opening for a junior planner at your agency, I submit my resume. I would like to be considered a qualified applicant for the position.”

 

Mike Broderick , a one- time archaeologist, is a Vocational Rehabilitation Counsellor with the Fraser Health Authority in Port Coquitlam where he helps people with mental health disabilities find and keep full or part time employment .

He WAS the Employment Specialist for the Neil Squire Society in Burnaby where he found employment for people with physical disabilities, A Supported Employment Coordinator at THEO BC (now the Open Door Group), and a case manager at Community Fisheries Development Centre where he helped people move from the fishing industry to something else because there, “Ain’t no fish.” This means he is VERY familiar with how a modern day resume should look.

He is a newly retired ambassador with the Vancouver Board of Trade and a former member of the Labour Task Force of the Burnaby Board of Trade He does some work as a field Archaeologist, is a fitness instructor and frequent contributor of fitness humour articles to Alive Magazine. He is always saying, “If you can’t be fit, you can at least be funny.”

He lives in Port Coquitlam with his spouse Cecelia. You can reach him at home at michael_broderick@telus.net  or at 604-464-4105. If you’re looking for a career change, he is the Spin Doctor and can give you a resume makeover at competitive rates

 

HOW TO CHEAT AT JOB INTERVIEWS

June 21, 2016

I wrote this piece a few years ago, but people have been asking for an updated version ever since. It stands  the test of time. If you can cheat at your interview, you will likely get the job

“I’m not going to lie during my interview just so you can look good,” my clients say.

“I didn’t say ‘lie,’”  I say. “I said ‘cheat.’  There’s a big difference.“

To clear up any misconceptions, I am republishing an old article on cheating on your interview.

One of my clients had an interview scheduled on Monday. I asked her what kind of help she thought she might need to come out a winner and get the job. “I don’t know,” she said. “I know all the questions and all the answers you gave me on the Monster.ca website, and I’ve had a few interviews – but no success.” (She was referring to http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-answer-23-of-the-most-common-interview-questions  – a particularly good resource.

“Who are you when you have an interview?” I asked.

“What  do you mean, ‘Who am I’” she echoed. “I’m me, that’s who.”

“Maybe you should think of being someone else, “ I said. “Maybe you could think of someone you admire and would do a good job on an interview, then answer the questions the way that person would.”

“You mean a role model?”  she asked.

“Exactly,” I said, and I went on to give a couple of examples.

The first one harkens back from my days as an archaeologist. One of my colleagues was planning to go into the field that week to do some survey work for a couple of engineering companies. He needed a loan to get the project off the ground, and I was asked to co-sign.  He and the banker met first, and within five minutes the floor began to rumble and shake.

“Why don’t you just stomp on my nuts while you’re at it?” my friend roared. I heard that he was charging him 3 extra points above the last time. He got the loan, paid the extra, and the banker told me I should get my friend to , “Keep his nose to the grindstone.”

My friend is the role model I used for an interview.  I had good off season. I gave two papers at two conferences and a demonstration at a meeting. I thought that I was in the governmental good books as I barged into the provincial archaeologist’s office, sat in his guest’s  chair, put my feet on his desk, and said,  “Well, you old squid-faced son of a bitch, how are you doin’?” He took a couple of draws off his pipe and said, “Get your feet off my desk.”

I couldn’t get a job for a month. (Although to my favour, the fellow was nicknamed “The Squid.” That moniker stuck with him for the rest of his career.

The second example comes some years later from my career as an employment counsellor working for the Vancouver School Board. I always had a suspicion about the belief that marijuana was a harmless drug. I noted that amongst my younger clients there was a high incidence of spousal abuse, and I believed that resulted from smoking dope. It wasn’t from the ‘high’ so much as the irritability from being ‘down.”

I dragged in a drug and alcohol counsellor from one of the drug abuse teams to speak to my team about a pot abuser’s group he was working with.

There was something professional about this person. He was working on a program that went against the grain of pot experts, and he seemed to be doing a good job, but the important thing was he was pretty good at getting jobs for me. The best part about my relationship with him was that he never knew that he was my role model.

Choose your role models wisely.

 

Mike Broderick , a one- time archaeologist, is a Vocational Rehabilitation Counsellor with the Fraser Health Authority in Port Coquitlam where he helps people with mental health disabilities find and keep full or part time employment .

He WAS the Employment Specialist for the Neil Squire Society in Burnaby where he found employment for people with physical disabilities, A Supported Employment Coordinator at THEO BC (now the Open Door Group), and a case manager at Community Fisheries Development Centre where he helped people move from the fishing industry to something else because there, “Ain’t no fish.” This means he is VERY familiar with how a modern day resume should look.

He is a newly retired ambassador with the Vancouver Board of Trade and a former member of the Labour Task Force of the Burnaby Board of Trade He does some work as a field Archaeologist, is a fitness instructor and frequent contributor of fitness humour articles to Alive Magazine. He is always saying, “If you can’t be fit, you can at least be funny.”

He lives in Port Coquitlam with his spouse Cecelia. You can reach him at home at michael_broderick@telus.net  or at 604-464-4105. If you’re looking for a career change, he is the Spin Doctor and can give you a resume makeover at competitive rates

 

THE ZEN OF DISHWASHING

May 15, 2016

The other day a new client came to me and said he wanted a job as a dishwasher. He handed me his resume and I noted that he had two college degrees and worked for a while as an architect. As I read the educational part, he began to speak.

“When are you going to tell me to ‘get back to the drawing board,’” He asked.

I told him I wasn’t. “I don’t think I have a funny enough sense of humour to spot a line like that,” I told him. “It’s a good line though, and I wish I’d said it.”

“Thanks,” He said.

“I am looking for some dishwashing experience on this.”

“I didn’t put it on.” He said. “I’m supposed to be an architect, but the last gig I had doing that was so stressful I ended up in the hospital. I look back with fondness at my university days where I washed plenty of dishes to work my way to the degree. I had a really good time washing dishes, and I think it will help me get on my feet again emotionally. It will help my mood. It will give me a chance to reclaim the workplace camaraderie I used to experience.”

“Maybe we should restructure your resume to include dishwashing.”  I said.

“How do we hide architecture.”

“The same way you hid dishwashing,” I said. “Tell me what is so great about dishwashing.”

He went on to explain that first of all, he is always moving on the  job. Me moves from the trays to the sink to the dishwasher to the cupboards where the clean dishes are stored. There is always action.

He told me that he really felt like he was part of a team while dishwashing. He felt he was an integral part of the kitchen from the chef to the server. He also said that most of the time his work was appreciated. Sometimes, when he was caught up, he even helped the prep cook.

Then there is the actual dishwashing. He felt he was actually part of a creative process. He took dirty plates, cups and utensils and transformed them transforming them into things that you could actually eat and drink from. He told me he could see value in his work.

He told me that there was actually an element of relaxation in dishwashing. Between moving dirty and clean dishes from one station to another, there was a station the he owned. A hot steamy sink. “There is something totally relaxing about soaking your hands in hot soapy water.” He said.

“It sounds like you really like dishwashing,” I said.

“Too bad I had to ruin my life with that professional credential.”

I told him that we should try something a little different. I suggested that we make a profile that would make him a dishwashing expert while retaining his credential that nobody would ever question because his strength as a dishwasher would be overpowering. We need to compose a profile that would raise his skills and abilities as a dishwasher to the ethereal level. How about this. We start with a title

●       Cosmic Dishwasher       ●

PROFILE:

A career dishwasher with years of experience in a variety of kitchens and in many restaurants. Energetic and appreciates the opportunity to complete large volumes of work done quickly. Work well independently, but also possess the communication skills necessary to be an effective team member – often assuming a leadership role. Stimulated by hot soapy water and have an ability to turn the jobsite into a cosmic shrine dedicated to craftsmanship and pride

 

What chef could resist a resume opening like that?

 

Mike Broderick , a one- time archaeologist, is a Vocational Rehabilitation Counsellor with the Fraser Health Authority in Port Coquitlam where he helps people with mental health disabilities find and keep full or part time employment .

He WAS the Employment Specialist for the Neil Squire Society in Burnaby where he found employment for people with physical disabilities, A Supported Employment Coordinator at THEO BC (now the Open Door Group), and a case manager at Community Fisheries Development Centre where he helped people move from the fishing industry to something else because there, “Ain’t no fish.” This means he is VERY familiar with how a modern day resume should look.

He is a newly retired ambassador with the Vancouver Board of Trade and a former member of the Labour Task Force of the Burnaby Board of Trade He does some work as a field Archaeologist, is a fitness instructor and frequent contributor of fitness humour articles to Alive Magazine. He is always saying, “If you can’t be fit, you can at least be funny.”

He lives in Port Coquitlam with his spouse Cecelia. You can reach him at home at michael_broderick@telus.net  or at 604-464-4105. If you’re looking for a career change, he is the Spin Doctor and can give you a resume makeover at competitive rates

ACE YOUR INTERVIEW LIKE A PORN STAR

May 8, 2016

Every Saturday morning, after teaching my fitness class at West Point Grey, I listen to a radio show called “The Age of Persuasion” (http://www.cbc.ca/ageofpersuasion/index.html.)  presented by Terry O’Reilly. The show popularizes advertising and marketing and branding. Last week the show was all about personal branding. Eventually the topic of resumes came up and, being a professional resume writer, I listened intently. I agreed with everything that was said, and I might actually incorporate photos on resumes as the show suggested.

“That,” I thought, “Would be an excellent way to write off the hot camera I bought last year.”

My problem is one of marketing. Summer is traditionally a bad time of year for resumes. People drift off into holiday mode, and network at barbecues without the benefit of an updated resume.

This week’s show was all about pornography, and how the regular porn sites are losing money because most of the porn is available for free on all the Youtube sites. It turns out they are hungry for advertisers. They also boast large audiences with 60 million viewers per day.

If I could persuade 1% of that market that they need to make significant changes in their lives and get jobs, I could hire and train 10 writers to do my spin doctoring for me, plus have enough money left over to mend the damage to my personal brand that would happen if I join all the fast food marketers that lurk there for clients. So be it!

This could be you!

That would be my first ad on the porn site. If you had a job, you could afford to go out on dates and stop living vicariously through the adventures of other on the Internet. Let us help you organize your life and develop your brand.

What are you doing with your life?

This ad will use guilt to motivate people to participate in life rather than sitting back with your mouse in your hand clicking on the “enlarge screen” button to see who is coming up next and imagining what they are about to do for you.

Ace your interview like a porn star

Most of my clients aren’t porn stars, and it would be hard to pull off being one at an interview without making an employer nervous. That would be akin to lying at your interview. Never lie on your interview. It’s better to cheat at your interview. To show the difference,   and by request, I am republishing an old article on cheating on your interview:

One of my clients had an interview scheduled on Monday. I asked her what kind of help she thought she might need to come out a winner and get the job. “I don’t know,” she said. “I know all the questions and all the answers you gave me on the Monster.ca website, and I’ve had a few interviews – but no success.” (She was referring to http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-answer-23-of-the-most-common-interview-questions  – a particularly good resource.

“Who are you when you have an interview?” I asked.

“What  do you mean, ‘Who am I’” she echoed. “I’m me, that’s who.”

“Maybe you should think of being someone else, “ I said. “Maybe you could think of someone you admire and would do a good job on an interview, then answer the questions the way that person would.”

“You mean a role model?”  she asked.

“Exactly,” I said, and I went on to give a couple of examples.

The first one harkens back from my days as an archaeologist. One of my colleagues was planning to go into the field that week to do some survey work for a couple of engineering companies. He needed a loan to get the project off the ground, and I was asked to co-sign.  He and the banker met first, and within five minutes the floor began to rumble and shake.

“Why don’t you just stomp on my nuts while you’re at it?” my friend roared. I heard that he was charging him 3 extra points above the last time. He got the loan, paid the extra, and the banker told me I should get my friend to , “Keep his nose to the grindstone.”

My friend is the role model I used for an interview.  I had good off season. I gave two papers at two conferences and a demonstration at a meeting. I thought that I was in the governmental good books as I barged into the provincial archaeologist’s office, sat in his guest’s  chair, put my feet on his desk, and said,  “Well, you old squid-faced son of a bitch, how are you doin’?” He took a couple of draws off his pipe and said, “Get your feet off my desk.”

I couldn’t get a job for a month. (Although to my favour, the fellow was nicknamed “The Squid.” That moniker stuck with him for the rest of his career.

The second example comes some years later from my career as an employment counsellor working for the Vancouver School Board. I always had a suspicion about the belief that marijuana was a harmless drug. I noted that amongst my younger clients there was a high incidence of spousal abuse, and I believed that resulted from smoking dope. It wasn’t from the ‘high’ so much as the irritability from being ‘down.”

I dragged in a drug and alcohol counsellor from one of the drug abuse teams to speak to my team about a pot abuser’s group he was working with.

There was something professional about this person. He was working on a program that went against the grain of pot experts, and he seemed to be doing a good job, but the important thing was he was pretty good at getting jobs for me. The best part about my relationship with him was that he never knew that he was my role model.

Choose your role models wisely. It is entirely possible that you have a better person than a porn star – depending on the job description.

I’m suddenly having second thoughts about advertising on porn sites. I doubt that the costs of advertising would be as cheap for me as it would for a fashion or take-out food company. I would be diminishing their viewership as, rather than watching porn, they would be working 9:00 – 5:00

Mike Broderick , a one- time archaeologist, is a Vocational Rehabilitation Counsellor with the Fraser Health Authority in Port Coquitlam where he helps people with mental health disabilities find and keep full or part time employment .

He WAS the Employment Specialist for the Neil Squire Society in Burnaby where he found employment for people with physical disabilities, A Supported Employment Coordinator at THEO BC (now the Open Door Group), and a case manager at Community Fisheries Development Centre where he helped people move from the fishing industry to something else because there, “Ain’t no fish.” This means he is VERY familiar with how a modern day resume should look.

He is a newly retired ambassador with the Vancouver Board of Trade and a former member of the Labour Task Force of the Burnaby Board of Trade He does some work as a field Archaeologist, is a fitness instructor and frequent contributor of fitness humour articles to Alive Magazine. He is always saying, “If you can’t be fit, you can at least be funny.”

He lives in Port Coquitlam with his spouse Cecelia. You can reach him at home at michael_broderick@telus.net  or at 604-464-4105. If you’re looking for a career change, he is the Spin Doctor and can give you a resume makeover at competitive rates