We've curated some of our favorite tools to help you move through the process as efficiently as possible. Whenever you're stuck, come here first!
Self-Assessment: What do I want to do next?
- Self-Assessment Summary Table: A template to capture your thinking about your strengths and talents, and what you might want to do next. Use it as a "north star" to guide your efforts, even though the journey will likely not be a linear one.
Self-Description: Get all my materials together
- Resume Example (Hybrid): Recommended format for a networking meeting
- Resume Example (Chronological): Recommended format for any online job application (works well with ATS) and preferred by recruiters.
- Storytelling Worksheet: Get your top 10+ success stories written down so you can speak to your strengths in resumes and interviews.
- Cover Letters: See this presentation to learn why cover letters are more important than ever, and to learn what makes a good one.
- Your Personal Brand: What this means and why it's so important, plus a actions you can take to define your purpose. For a deeper dive see this presentation.
- LinkedIn Settings: Use to optimize your LinkedIn settings so others can find you, and to make it easier to submit applications.
- LinkedIn 101 (Skill Builder Workshop content): Chock full of recommendations and links to learn more.
Job Search and Networking: Find contacts and jobs. And develop systems to keep track of everything!
- Job Search Checklist: Get started by working your way through this checklist
- Target List Template: Build and prioritized your target list
- Job Search Tracker: Track your applications and progress
- Networking Tracker: Track all your networking outreach activities
- Informational Interview Questions: Questions you might consider asking during an informational interview
Guide to Networking: Best practices for networking on LinkedIn
Interviewing: Preparation is key!
- Read How to Prepare for Your Job Interview
- Story Telling Worksheet: Get your top 10+ stories together so you're prepared for most behavioral questions
- Top Interview Questions & Answers
- Do You Have Any Questions for Me?: Questions to ask at the end of the interview
- Watch this: How to make the best first impressions
- Getting to Yes
- Pay Up
Books We Recommend
Visit the "Extras | Book Recommendations" for a complete list of books we recommend.
Designing Your Life, by Bill Burnett and Dave Evans
Designers create worlds and solve problems using design thinking. Look around your office or home—at the tablet or smartphone you may be holding or the chair you are sitting in. Everything in our lives was designed by someone. And every design starts with a problem that a designer or team of designers seeks to solve.
In this book, Bill Burnett and Dave Evans show us how design thinking can help us create a life that is both meaningful and fulfilling, regardless of who or where we are, what we do or have done for a living, or how young or old we are. The same design thinking responsible for amazing technology, products, and spaces can be used to design and build your career and your life, a life of fulfillment and joy, constantly creative and productive, one that always holds the possibility of surprise.
What Color is Your Parachute?, by Richard Bolles
What Color Is Your Parachute? is the world’s most popular job-hunting guide. This completely updated edition features the latest resources, strategies, and perspectives on today’s job market, revealing surprising advice on what works—and what doesn’t—so you can focus your efforts on tactics that yield results.
At its core is Richard N. Bolles’s famed Flower Exercise, a unique self-inventory that helps you design your career—and your life—around your key passions, transferable skills, traits, and more.
This practical manual also provides essential tips for writing impressive resumes and cover letters, networking effectively, interviewing with confidence, and negotiating the best salary possible.
Whether you’re searching for your first job, were recently laid off, or are dreaming of a career change, What Color Is Your Parachute? will guide you toward a fulfilling and prosperous life’s work.
Change Your Questions, Change Your Life, by Marilee Adams
The first edition of Marilee Adams's book introduced a surprising, life-altering truth: any of us can literally change our lives simply by changing the questions we ask, especially those we ask ourselves. We can ask questions that open us to learning, connection, satisfaction, and success. Or we can ask questions that impede progress and keep us from getting results we want. Asking "What great things could happen today?" creates very different expectations, moods, and energy than asking "What could go wrong today?"
The new, expanded 4th edition contains a new chapter that delves into what neuroscience reveals about managing our stresses and fears more effectively. This strengthens our understanding of why Question Thinking™ works so well. The book provides powerful, practical Question Thinking™ tools for interacting with people and situations more successfully. It provides the missing “how-to” for personal change by showing readers how to switch from a constricting, disempowering “Judger” mindset to an expansive, empowering “Learner” mindset. This is what enables people to foster breakthroughs and achieve the results, experiences, and relationships they desire.
In the extensively revised edition, Adams has made the book even more illuminating and helpful, adding three new chapters as well as three powerful new tools.
The 20-Minute Networking Meeting, by Marcia Ballinger and Nathan Perez
Taking the best elements of the best networkers from a multitude of industries and professions, combined with 40 years of the authors’ own experience, this book culminates in a highly productive networking approach from a hiring perspective. Chock full of real-world scenarios, short stories, meeting examples, and dozens of tips and observations from hiring authorities and recruiting experts, The 20 Minute Networking Meeting is an end-to-end lesson on job-search networking, founded on the premises of gratitude, positivity, and reciprocity.
Specifically constructed to clarify and simplify networking for job-search, this book was written for even the most introverted networker and is rounded out with a complete set of readiness worksheets that guide the reader through actual networking preparation.
The Two-Hour Job Search, by Steve Dalton
Online job postings have fundamentally changed how people search for a job. Hiring managers increasingly rely on referrals to avoid reviewing hundreds of resumes per posting. However, job seekers crave the perceived efficiency that an online jobsite offers, pouring countless hours into an inherently ineffective approach.
Instead of providing laundry lists of “tips” which readers must trial-and-error through, The 2-Hour Job Search offers step-by-step, time-limited instructions for the most frustrating part of finding work — getting a first interview. This science-based process splits the job search into manageable pieces, each requiring at most 15 minutes, to help those looking for work conduct the best job search possible.
Tip: Join the 2HJS LinkedIn group, hosted by the author, to read Q&A between current job seekers and Steve Dalton. The group stays active because Steve answers every question.
Never Search Alone, by Phyl Terry
Three big ideas animate Never Search Alone:
- Never Search Alone. Because your emotional balance is the most important thing you need to manage in a job search, you need a support group of fellow job seekers that will help you turn insecurity and anxiety into hope, motivation, confidence, and accountability.
- Candidate-Market Fit. If product-market fit drives company success, candidate-market fit drives career success. So, before you begin interviewing and networking you need to identify precisely what you want and what the market wants. Phyl shows how this key step will help you figure out the intersection between your hopes and dreams and market realities.
- Four Legs to the Negotiations Stool. There are *four* legs to the negotiations stool: compensation, budget, resources, and support. The last three drive your success in the next job, which is why Phyl shows job seekers to emphasize those too.
For even more support during this process, join a Job Search Council (JSC), a mutual support group made up of peer job seekers who agree to search together. The author helps interested job seekers find each other to form or join a JSC of people who want to help each other through the process.