Archives for unemployed

ATTENTION: Career Underdogs; I Challenge YOU To Become A Career Champion (2-day challenge starts NOW!)

Trophies by Steven Lilley on Flickr

To the desperately unemployed or underemployed, the week-to-week barely surviving, and the ones who feel like if it weren’t for bad luck, they wouldn’t have any luck at all:

I challenge you…

….to the Cheeks in the Seats challenge! Don’t worry…. this won’t cost you any money…but it will take something – DETERMINATION.

I am sharing the free replay of the 1st module for the new and improved 2x as fast Dream Job Breakthrough System.

(It’s here: http://bit.ly/FreeDJBSreplay )

I PROMISE you that I will teach you something you never knew before! I know – bold promise.

I know a lot of career coaches give a lot of the same advice, and there’s nothing wrong with reinforcement. You probably KNOW what to do. BUT, if you haven’t yet gotten where you want to go, you need a new approach.

What you will learn is the KEY to DOING what you know you need to do. I’m not just going to tell you that you have to do it, I’m going to teach you to flip the switch on your motivation – that thing you need to actually do it.

So, I want you to watch the replay PRONTO (it comes down next week, AND…

>> I deliver and teach you something you never knew, AND…

>> You want to continue learning and applying a system that helps you get MORE interviews and offers with LESS time and effort (and frustration and disappointment,) THEN…

Share the link to the replay with as many people as possible. If you can inspire 4 people to invest in the system, your seat is earned.

I can appreciate the position you are in. It is clear you need some help getting out of it, and I want to help you.

It’s psychological and purposeful that I want to do it this way.

You need to start remembering and realizing your power, so I am going to give you the opportunity to make this happen for yourself.

Another reason: When you have earned it, you will be that much more engaged and invested in following the system.

I’ve been doing this long enough to know how to optimize outcomes. If you’re going to do this, I want you ALL IN!

Prove to yourself that you can make something happen if you want something bad enough!

(The coaching starts now!)

Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to get 4 others to invest in the program. So, this would be like if I paid you 25% commissions on sales you make.

If you get even more, I’ll give you one-on-one coaching, up to what you earn. Because of your prolonged suffering, I suspect that you need one-on-one time with me to unravel the ropes that weighs you down and holds you back.

My best advice for reaching this goal:

>> Make a list of all the people you know who complain about their jobs, their bosses, their companies, etc… (If you come across someone else in the same situation, I will offer this opportunity to them, but time is of the essence!)

>> Make a list of all outlets/channels you can use

Suggestions: Your network (BTW you really need to start adding people to your LinkedIn network!,) LinkedIn groups you are in or can join, professional organizations, special interest groups you are in (hobbies, sports, kids’ sports), personal social media networks, alumni networks, etc.

>> Touch base individually with those whom you feel know a lot more people who could benefit – Recruiters, Super networkers, Life coaches, people who volunteer a lot

>> Tell people in your own words the value that you got out of this. I know you don’t want to share your situation – that’s very personal! You don’t have to do that. What realizations did you make? I must have said something you’ve never heard before. Sharing something valuable is a way of demonstrating that you ARE valuable. There are more people out there who need the breakthrough that this system makes available. Help me change their lives for the better so that I can change your life for the better.

Are you in? If so, I will create an affiliate link for you so that we can track all traffic you generate.

YOU GOT THIS!

Unemployment is NOT Easy Money

Unemployment Office by Bytemarks of Flickr

Unemployment Office by Bytemarks of Flickr

If you are on unemployment and doing contracting for temp work, you need to know this…

Honesty is always the best policy. Sometimes being honest can hurt you financially in the short-term, but being dishonest can certainly hurt you worse in the long-term. Learn from my experience.

I have received unemployment benefits from two states throughout my career, in New Jersey and Pennsylvania. My first career was in radio, and I tried to make a go at a full-time career, but also needed to afford living on my own. I discovered that a better financial decision was to work long-term temp assignments full-time while working nights and weekends in radio.

A company that I had worked at for 10 months was reorganizing and laying off people, and I was relieved from my assignment. It was usually no more than two weeks in between long-term temp assignments, but this particular gap was longer than normal. I had no idea that I could receive partial unemployment benefits until a co-worker at the radio station informed me.

So, I filed for partial unemployment, which enabled me to pay my bills. I picked up extra hours at the radio station doing voiceover projects, and continued to lobby for a full-time position there while pursuing other full-time jobs in broadcasting, sales and marketing both in New Jersey and back home in Pennsylvania.

The temp agency was fully aware of my intentions to find a full-time, permanent position, but that I was willing to work another long-term assignment. After all, it was really a great way to test out different companies, different industries, and different roles. This is how I discovered recruiting and decided to pursue it eventually. The assignment they offered me, however, were one to two week stints. There was also a critical need for augmented staff and because of that, I would not have been permitted to take any time off to have an interview for a full-time position, so I turned it down. That’s when I realized that unemployment is not easy money.

The temp agency reported I had turned down work to the state of New Jersey. I received notification that, not only would my unemployment benefits halt immediately, but they were billing me for all of the unemployment benefits I had already received– the money I had already spent on bills.

Thankfully, there were a couple of opportunities that were in progress. One was door-to-door sales, which was very outside of my comfort zone, but I knew I would gain great training and skills that I would apply to my eventual recruiting career. It was commission only, and was back in Pennsylvania, so I had to move. The other opportunity was advertising sales for a newspaper, and it required that I work six days a week including holidays, and didn’t pay as well as most of the temp jobs that I had worked. Additionally, it offered very little room for growth (I doubt if this newspaper is even still around).

While I relocated myself back home to live with my bachelor father, I complied with the appeals process for the state of New Jersey. If you have ever moved you know how chaotic that time can be. Imagine the additional administrative burden of dealing with state government, learning and starting a new job where income is only earned if you make a sale, and I was wrapping up a nearly two-year relationship that had gone south.

I am so thankful that I kept great records of every company to which I applied and every follow-up action that I took, because I was attempting to prove to the state that I was only denying short-term work because it inhibited my ability to look for long-term work. Being able to show the state all of my efforts proved my case.

I was about a month into my new job already when a trial-by-phone with a judge finally occurred. I was very straightforward. “Yes, I did deny work with X Staffing Company.” I was able to show them that I had an interview already scheduled with an employer for a full-time permanent position. I empathized with the judge, stating that I know many people take advantage of the system. However, I had taken on extra hours at the radio station whenever possible, had documented very well how actively I was seeking full-time permanent positions, and had eventually landed so that I was no longer a burden to the system. I was no longer dependent on unemployment benefits. The judge found in my favor. I was not required to pay back the unemployment compensation.

Fast forward years later, I was recruiting for an IT consulting firm. Consultants in between assignments sometimes filed for unemployment compensation, and we kept records of when a consultant receiving benefits “on us” turned down “reasonable” work.

What I have learned from both this experience and two other experiences with unemployment, is that not only is honesty the best policy, but also keep great records of all of your activities (we offer our Epic Careering Tool Kit for just this purpose) and make sure you do not have to rely on unemployment benefits for very long.

I know a lot of out of work job seekers perceive that investing in services like ours is like spending money that might be needed to pay bills. In reality, and all too often, the investment isn’t made, and money runs out because a job is not landed, and I hear, “I should’ve engaged you last year.” I literally heard these very words twice this month.

I will not let you invest your money in our branding services if it is not going to pay off in a job; it is why we offer free consultations. You get to try us out, but we also make sure that the challenges that you have are ones we can help you overcome. Download, complete and send us your needs assessment and résumé to receive an invitation to schedule yours.

 

3 Ways Being Unemployed, Underemployed and Underpaid Derail Your Retirement Plans

Happy_Retirement by Thomas8047 on Flickr

Happy_Retirement by Thomas8047 on Flickr

No one wants to find oneself unemployed and without a steady salary. The lack of gainful employment is a frightening scenario. How long will unemployment last? How much money is there in savings? What about the bills? What will be paid and what will fall to the wayside? What luxuries have to be cut from the budget? All of these concerns can come rushing at you like a tidal wave threatening to drown you. The consequences of being unemployed, whether it is for the short-term or the long-term can impact your financial future. The same is true of underemployment and under-compensation.

I’ve heard this story too many times, and I’m sure you’ve heard it, too. A woman was denied unemployment benefits and it took her nearly a year to land a job. When she did land, she settled for part-time work while she continued to search for a full-time position. To get by, she dipped into her savings accounts and borrowed money from her 401(k). At first she tried to keep up with her debt, but as the months passed, it became harder to make ends meet. Her house went into foreclosure because she stopped paying her mortgage, she let her credit card bills go, and eventually she had to ask her adult children for financial help. Her situation gradually improved as she found full-time work and made arrangements to save her home and repay her debt. That said, her financial future has gone awry, and it will take a lot of work to recover what was lost. Is there a way she could have avoided her unfortunate situation?

Yes, there are consequences to being unemployed, but there is also a solution. First, let’s dive into how unemployment can affect your finances and your future. Then I’ll discuss the solution and why an investment in your job search can save you tens of thousands of dollars.

 

  1. The short and long-term financial impacts of being unemployed without a salary:

 

When you’re unemployed, you may receive unemployment benefits. These benefits help stave off the immediate concerns of your day-to-day expenses. You temporarily have enough cash to keep the lights on and put food on the table. While you’re out of a job, you can focus on making ends meet. This means you’re no longer contributing to your savings and retirement accounts. Worse, if you’ve run out of unemployment benefits (or you were denied them), you may have to draw upon your personal savings and retirement accounts. If you spend savings before landing a new job, it may be tempting to live on credit. As time passes, the consequences become more severe.

The long-term effects of unemployment can be devastating to your psyche and self-confidence. The toll on mental health are particularly notable. A sustained loss of income can create stress, anxiety, and depression as a person moves from a higher socioeconomic status to a lower status. Depression can also make you physically sicker by increasing the chance of a heart attack or stroke. Furthermore, job seekers suffering from an increased toll on mental health who had been unemployed for more than 12 weeks had a 70% reduction in their chances of finding a job, versus job seekers who weren’t suffering mentally. Long-term unemployment can also mean that you slowly drift away from your former co-workers and others in your personal and professional networks. A weak network makes it harder to find employment.

On the financial front, long-term unemployment can decimate your retirement funds and send you into a debt spiral. It isn’t uncommon for unemployed older job seekers to borrow against their 401(k) plans to make ends meet. Borrowing against a savings plan, or drawing from your personal savings means you’re pitting your present against your future. In other words, you feed your family today, but your ability to retire comfortably, or at all, is greatly diminished. The longer you’re unemployed and in debt, the harder it is to escape. As some bills are left by the wayside and go into collection, credit scores can drop, unpaid debt goes into collections, and lawsuits are filed. When someone in debt finally obtains gainful employment, they may find their wages garnished by creditors. Some may also discover it is harder to find a job because some background checks include credit checks.

 

No matter what unemployment situation you find yourself in, the anxiety can be overwhelming and lead to decisions based on fear. That leads to my next point…

 

  1. Opting for underemployment:

 

When we are staring into the abyss, there is a powerful temptation to latch on to the closest lifeline. A temporary job, a part-time job, and even accepting a pay cut may provide you with immediate income, but these employment decisions can be harmful in the long run. I wrote about it in my article “How Fear Limits Careers.” Not only are you accepting fewer dollars and benefits than what you previously earned, but it becomes harder to catch up on your salary, savings and retirement. Being underpaid means the majority of your income is going toward paying your current bills and keeping your head above water. There may not be enough money left over in your budget to consider fully investing in your future at the levels you need in order to retire when you want to retire with the quality of life that you’d expect, want and deserve. If you’re a few years away from retirement, it may even be tempting to retire early at the cost of receiving lowered social security benefits. It may seem counterintuitive to wait on a higher paying job if you can immediately land a job that will bring in income, but you are better off waiting for higher pay. Don’t settle for less than what you previously earned.

Once you do secure a job that provides you with your net worth, you can focus on paying your bills, getting out of any debt you may have accumulated and planning for retirement. And, there are ways that you can catch up for the times that you were not able to save, but it isn’t easy.

 

  1. Your financial plans for retirement:

 

If you’ve experienced a bout of short-term or long-term unemployment, the year you plan to retire has to be readjusted based what you can contribute. Most people haven’t planned far enough ahead to consider at what age they’ll retire and how much money they will need. In fact, ignorance seems like bliss—until you find yourself a few short years away from retirement. You realize you want to spend more time with your grandchildren, or you may want to travel. Not being prepared for retirement means you’ll have to spend longer working or get by with less income. Before the day of retirement comes it is worth your time and effort to consult a financial planner. Ask yourself a few questions:

 

A.  How has being unemployed affected my retirement funds?

If you take money out of your 401(k) before the age of 59, you’ll have to pay taxes and penalties on the amount withdrawn. You’ll also miss out on tax-deferred growth you could have been earning.

 

B. What strategy do I need to utilize to get my retirement funds back on track?

Once you do successfully land a job, you’ll need to recover the retirement funds you lost. That means calculating your expenses ahead of your retirement years, putting away as much money as you can from each paycheck, depositing more money in your retirement accounts and scaling back on expenses. MoneyRates.com has an excellent six-step plan for workers over 40.

 

C. Will I be able to retire at the age I want when that time comes?

If you take the time to calculate how much money you need to retire and the age at which you’d like to retire, you may have to rethink your plans. It may not be feasible to retire at 62 based on your funds. Instead, you may have to wait until 65 or older.

 

A financial planner can help you work out a new retirement year based on what you can contribute. But they can also help you determine how much income you really need in order to catch up or retire on time. This is a critical number to have! I don’t know how or why people ever make career moves without it.

Once you have a retirement plan in place that accounts for your lost income, you can go forward with those plans. You may discover you have to make a few short-term sacrifices such as buying a new car, going on vacation every year or even delaying a few home upgrades. (Just make sure you set some money aside for emergencies.) The temporary pain of having to cut back will be worth it when you can afford the retirement you want.

Now that we’ve raised your blood pressure giving you the scary truth, let’s talk about what is in your power to do about it. Hiring a career coach can help yield results from your job search much faster than searching alone. Think of a career coach as an investment and landing a job that pays you what you’re worth as a return on your investment. There is an accepted theory in the field, and I’ve never been able to locate the source, that calculates that job seekers can expect to be in transition one month for every $10,000 worth of salary. Based on this formula, we have helped our clients cut the length of their searches by 50% on average. With a focused campaign that is built upon a powerful personal brand and fortified with an effective social media strategy and activity campaign, you can regain control of your job search. That means creating bidding wars where employers fight for your talent, choosing your employers, earning what you’re worth, and accelerating your income. Our ROI calculator can help determine if you can afford to use our services.

Even if you ultimately don’t use our services, I still strongly suggest working with a career coach. You may have to put money upfront to give your job search the momentum it needs, but it is an investment that pays off in the long run, as long as you choose the right one! If you know of someone who landed swiftly, ask him or her if they used a career coach they can refer. Otherwise, do your due diligence.

Using the services of job search professionals may also be tax deductible, meaning you could regain some of the money you spent on those services. (Check with your CPA to verify. Certain conditions need to exist.)

There are consequences to being unemployed, underemployed and/or underpaid but don’t let fear and desperation guide your actions. An investment in your job search will pay off in the long run when it is invested wisely. Just imagine triumphantly returning to work earning the same salary as before you were let go, or an even higher salary. Imagine being so desirable that employers bid on your talent and you can work at your company of choice. You may have lost some ground on your retirement and savings, but with an accelerated income, you can recover.

 

We’re here for you if you want to sample our services with a free résumé and campaign evaluation: info@epiccareering.com

 

Extra, extra! HUGE unemployment benchmark reached

News_Attraction by Johnragai-Moment_Catcher

News_Attraction by Johnragai-Moment_Catcher

Under 10 million unemployed!

The mainstream media will NOT let you celebrate about it, however. They would much rather you remain pessimistic, suspicious and discouraged.

Exhibit A: http://nypost.com/2014/05/07/no-three-ring-circus-needed-to-rig-unemployment-rate/

Exhibit B: http://touch.latimes.com/#section/-1/article/p2p-80083060/

Exhibit C: http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2014-05-08/jobless-claims-in-u-s-decreased-more-than-forecast-last-week.html  (this article looks positive, but read on)

Is it all good? No. I know that the people who are especially impacted by the economy and still unemployed will not be celebrating these numbers, because the numbers don’t mean anything personal to them. However, when the numbers are bad, they are internalized even more. It means something – challenge, hardship, obstacles, pressure, and even hopelessness. There is, at the very least, hope in these numbers. Hope is much better place from which to conduct a job search. This is why I continue to put these numbers in a more positive perspective. I am but one small voice, however. It continues to enrage me when the bigger, louder voices attempt to inspire fear and negativity, and for what? Clicks? Likes? Impeachment? I consider this to be sensationalization – irresponsible and extremely damaging to the job seeking community morale.

A glimpse at the numbers:

The national unemployment rate lowered significantly over the month to 6.3% with 9.8 million unemployed. The number of persons experiencing long spells of unemployment (over a year) decreased by 283,000 people to 2.3 million. 3.5 million individuals had been unemployed for 6 months or more in April, a decrease of 287,000 over the month, and a decrease of 908,000 over the past 12 months. That means about 32% of those who became unemployed 6 months ago are still unemployed today. They are, however, competing with 1.3M fewer job seekers than they were in October when the unemployment rate was 7.2% and 11.1 million were unemployed.

 

The average number of weeks that job seekers are staying unemployed has increased over the month to 35.1, which is a week and a half shorter than last year, while the median also decreased to 15 weeks. Such a difference may reflect that for most industries and geographies, job seekers may be able to transition within 5 to 6 months. However, about 23% of job seekers may not be able to effectively execute a transition campaign or may be in adversely impacted geographies or shrinking markets, creating challenges to transitioning that lead to extremely long spells of unemployment.

Only 44% of unemployed job seekers have LinkedIn profiles and other staggering data

I’m surprised at how frequently a job seeker will ask me if recruiters are really looking for candidates on LinkedIn. I’m also surprised how many job seekers still don’t have a presence on LinkedIn. Even if you are not a job seeker, unless you are financially free, chances are good you will be in the next 3 years! What are you waiting for?

Here is some lovely data to back up my assertion.

Results of my 2012 Discussion posed: How much time do you spend on LinkedIn each week, and is it regimented or as needed? If as needed, what is the need that precipitates it?

Though this discussion did not garner significant participation, I feel I made a promise to share the results and I like to keep my promises.

I posted this discussion on 7 different LinkedIn recruiting and human resources groups and received responses from 7 people from 3 different groups (ERE.net, Global Recruiting Alliance, and Purple Squirrel Quest).

  • 2 were Certified Internet Recruiters
  • 1 was a C-level executive
  • 2 owned their own recruiting companies
  • 1 was an outsourced HR professional working onsite
  • 1 was just a super-savvy recruiter

The consensus was that LinkedIn was something they used daily for at least an hour a day.

Some interesting differences:

  • A CIR often used the LinkedIn profile as the primary profile of their candidates, rather than a résumé.
  • The savvy recruiter was very focused on using LinkedIn to build a proactive pipeline.
  • The C-level executive checked LinkedIn status updates hourly.
  • A CIR and one of the business owners cite using LinkedIn’s community features to stay connected to their industry.
  • The other business owner used LinkedIn 8-10 hours per day during the week and several hours over the weekend!

Since these results are interesting, but not significant, I wanted to share some data from a report with much more meaningful data. This data is from the Jobvite 2012 Social Recruiting Report

http://bit.ly/SRR13

“Social recruiting not only increases the number of applicants in the hiring pipeline, but also the quality of candidates.”

  • 92% of respondents use or plan to use social media for recruiting, an increase of almost ten percent from the 83% using social recruiting in 2010. In 2011 it was 89%.
  • 73% have successfully hired a candidate through social networks, making social recruiting a highly effective source of quality new hires. – up from 58% in 2010! 89% of the time, this was through LinkedIn!
  • A large majority of recruiters (71%) consider themselves savvy in social recruiting, having a sizeable understanding of what to look for in social profiles.
  • 49% of recruiters who implemented social recruiting saw an increase in the quantity of candidates, and 43% noted a surge in the quality of candidates.

So where are they on social media?

  • 93% have adopted LinkedIn – up from 78% in 2010!
  • 66% on Facebook – up from 55%
  • 54% are on Twitter – up fro 45%

That’s still more on Twitter than aren’t on Twitter!

What I would like to know is, what percentage of their time on social media, LinkedIn in particular, is dedicated to what part of the recruiting cycle. If I had to guess, based on how I used to use LinkedIn and train recruiters to use it, it would be broken down as such:

  • 10% to blast out job openings (since this doesn’t take much time now)
  • 40% to source candidates
  • 20% to qualify already sourced candidates
  • 20% to compare candidates for interview opportunities
  • 10% to compare candidates for offers

Can anyone out there confirm or dispute this?

Since they also do a job seeker report and I have so many job seekers apparently unaware of the frequency with which LinkedIn is depended upon, I wondered how many job seekers are actually hip to the trend.

Firstly, here’s a staggering number – 75%

  • 75% of the workforce is looking for a job!
  • 48% of those are employed. Both of these numbers are up from last year. 69% of the workforce was job-hunting then and only 35% were employed.
  • 61% of those job seekers say job seeking is much harder than it was in 2011.
  • 41% of job seekers are unemployed (sounds like a good topic for a vlog!)

So, here it is:

  • 44% of unemployed job seekers have a LinkedIn profile.  Say WHAT?!
  • 85% are on Facebook (no surprise)
  • 51% are on Twitter (that is surprising!)

Even more surprising

  • 31% of employed job seekers have a LinkedIn profile!
  • 75% are on Facebook
  • 31% are on Twitter

Of them all, Facebook was the most likely site to take a candidate out of the running!

Volunteering and organizational memberships were very highly weighted in a job seeker’s favor.

So, there is a meal for thought.

If you don’t know where to start, we have webinars available for this exact reason.

To at least get you going on LinkedIn, go here: http://bit.ly/7daysLI

To make sure that once you are up and running you can be in the right type of action that will help you land sooner based on how recruiters are actually searching, go here: http://bit.ly/3jobsecrets

And by the way – we write LinkedIn profiles that attract unsolicited job offers! Not all of our clients are job seekers, but they sure get sought out, and some even make career advancements they thought were years away! www.charesume.com

😉