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Brand Conversation with Julie Walraven

by Mohammed on January 4, 2010

Today, I Interviewed to Julie Walraven. Julie is a career expert and certified professional resume writer. She is also a nationally published author of resumes featured in many career-focused books, such as Expert Resumes for Engineers, America’s Top Resumes, Expert Resumes for Teachers and Educators, College Grad Resumes to Land $75,000+ Jobs, and Best Resumes and CVs for International Jobs. Julie has completely enjoyed her career which has spanned over 20 years and easily has helped thousands of individuals find career success. She would love to share her career management knowledge and skills with you as you strive to reach your career dream.

You can connect with her via @Twitter @Facebook @LinkedIn

Mohammed: How can individuals further their careers in a bad economy? What are the motivational habits and action preference that preferred to be made in order to move on?

Julie: To further your career in any economy, bad or good, you need to develop and continue to develop your network. Many people are still using old job search practices from the past, turning to newspaper listings or government job service listings as their exclusive search point. Others have determined that this wonderful new thing, the Internet (web) will solve all their problems if they just search Career Builder or Monster or put their resume up on both. Still others have positioned themselves on LinkedIn, but with a basic profile and no details.

To be successful both in your career and job search, you need to nurture a network by establishing connections both with real life friends, colleagues, and business people as well as social networking friends. Networking worked before the web but has expanded your options exponentially. Today you can network with people across your country and around the globe using tools such as Twitter, LinkedIn, and Facebook.

The key in all of this the words much bantered about on social media: transparency, authenticity, and I add my own, integrity. You can establish a presence, either physically or on social media that pushes forth your agenda, running roughshod over the feelings of others but you will be found out quickly and quickly ignored. Instead if you always represent integrity, are free of hidden agendas, possess a sincere interest in helping others, and show that you are genuine in your ways of dealing with others, you will find yourself building new connections and new opportunities will come out of that.

Mohammed: What are your top three tips for a successful job transition?

Julie: 1. Know your target. Throwing out resumes to every job advertised without focusing on the skills needed by the employer or selecting a specific path will create a disorganized job search and lengthen the search time. Resumes and other career marketing materials that I create are targeted. This is often the hardest lesson to get across to my clients. They want a one-size fits all resume. But that doesn’t work. You don’t need to create a new resume for every job but your resume needs to be used for jobs that match the target or focus. For example, if the headline on your resume says: Sales | Sales Management and you start sending that resume out for Heavy Equipment Operator positions, the employer will be confused. Conversely, he will also be confused if it says Heavy Equipment Operator and you send it to Sales | Sales Management positions. Target, focus, and substantiate your target with keywords and accomplishments that support your target.

2. Network, Network, Network … I said this in the first question and I continue to reinforce that success in the job search is directly related to how much energy you put into building and nurturing your network. Networks are lifelong investments, not something you turn on just when you are in a job search. I love Harvey MacKay’s philosophy in “Dig your Well before You’re Thirsty,” meaning that you connect with people, help people throughout your life and when you are the one in need of help, they will be there for you.

3. Have the right tools. A professionally written resume, dynamic LinkedIn profile, and a good understanding of successful job search strategies will shorten your job search. If you have the skills and talents to delve into your work history and isolate keywords, focus on accomplishments, and tie it together in a professional resume and cover letter, then by all means manage your own job search and career marketing materials. If like most people, you write a resume once every three to five years, seek out a professional who cares about your job search and invest in getting professionally written career marketing materials and strategies to help shorten your search.

Mohammed: Preparing to enter Web. 3.0, do you believe that resume is still relevant tool to look for a job?

Julie: I think the resume is simply one of the tools that you need to look for a job. I think that the resume will always be here in some format. You need something to match skills, talents, and knowledge to the job qualifications. The job seeker needs the resume to be able to target the positions he wants. The resume components, keywords and accomplishments will always be needed to match with the job qualifications.

I also have a personal dislike of the way that the online job applications have desensitized the job search. It becomes so much more critical to have the right key words in your resume because often that is all that the system is scanning to find. The match – the best match, but in the process many qualified candidates may get thrown out like dirty bath water. I understand the massive amount of resumes that flow through a company’s human resource department but that is why I continue to stress networking so that you put a human in the mix somewhere who is your advocate and can look for your resume coming through the system.

Brand Word:  Changing career stress into career success.

Spotlight:  As a Certified Professional Resume Writer with over 20 years of career marketing experience, I want to be your partner in your job search and your career. You can find me at http://www.designresumes.com

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Update: Julie Walraven mentioned this interview on her blog: Julie Interviewed by Mohammed Altaee’s Brand Conversations

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