Your Excerpt from A Multitude of Hope
A Multitude of Hope is Peter Weddle’s new novel about what’s happening to the American Dream.
It’s a tale of three out-of-work Baby Boomers and a secret online group of workplace activists who are practicing “economic disobedience” against the vulture capitalists in the American economy.
Ripped right from today’s headlines, the book engulfs you in a no-holds barred war between a self-styled monarchy of greed-is-good investors and a virtual colony of revolutionaries using the Web to even the score. Part edge-of-your-seat thriller and part exploration of modern American culture, this is one novel you won’t want to miss.
To read a free except, click here.
The Web is crowded with articles extolling the best practices for finding a new or better job. I’ve contributed a few of those missives myself. Recently, however, I heard a fellow describe best practices as “stuff that used to work.” In other words, by the time something has become a best practice, it’s likely also to have become obsolete. What’s the alternative? Next Practices.
Next Practices are emerging ideas that have a positive impact on your job search. They are not widely known or even accepted, but that’s part of their value. They enable you to stand out from the herd. And, in today’s crowded job market, that’s an important advantage, in and of itself.
No less important, Next Practices address the world as it is, not as it has been. They are effective because they are timely and on point. They deal with the situations you face, not those that were faced by job seekers a decade ago, or five years ago, or before the Great Recession and Lousy Recovery changed everything. To put it another way, Next Practices correct best practices.
Unlike best practices, however, Next Practices are not fixed. They aren’t etched in stone as if they were social commandments. They are fluid and frequently in flux. They are correct for the circumstances we face today, but they may have to morph to respond to the changes in those circumstances that will inevitably occur tomorrow and the day after.
What are some of these Next Practices? The two below will give you a sense of how they work.
Don’t believe what you’re told about a college degree.
What’s been the best practice for the last twenty years? Go get a college degree and your career success is locked in. It was good advice in the past; it’s the kiss of death today. If you have any doubt about that, ask the 53.6 percent of college graduates under the age of 25 who are now unemployed or underemployed.
What’s the Next Practice? Go get a college degree and a degree in career self-management. Learn how to be an expert in a field of study that interests you and an expert in putting that expertise to work.
There is a body of knowledge and set of skills involved in preparing for and then continuously succeeding in the job market. Sadly, you won’t find either offered on most U.S. college campuses these days; the faculty doesn’t consider them important enough to warrant inclusion in the curriculum. Contrast that view with the one in China, where such a course is a requirement for graduation.
What should you do if you’ve been out of college for awhile and are in transition? Find a career counselor or coach with whom you’re comfortable and tap their wisdom. Invest the same level of effort you devoted to acquiring your college diploma (minus all the social stuff), but this time you’ll be getting an education that will actually help you find a job and lead a successful career.
Don’t rely on accomplishments to set yourself apart from other job seekers.
What’s been the best practice for the last twenty years? Feature your work accomplishments on your resume to make it stand out. It was good advice in the past; today, however, employers expect more. They no longer believe that excellence in the past is a predictor of excellence in the future.
What’s the Next Practice? Add a new section called ‘What I Learned’ to each job description in the Experience section of your resume. Use it to list the top 3-5 new skills or areas of knowledge you acquired through doing your work. From an employer’s perspective, it’s that personal growth that is the best insurance you will continue to deliver superior performance on-the-job.
Why are these two changes so important? Because the half-life of your expertise is shrinking by the year. Don’t believe it? Think about this: for the first time ever, in 2008, we humans created 4 terabytes (4 times 10 to the 19th power) of new information in just one year. That’s more new knowledge than was created in the first 5,000 years of human history. So, the only way to land a job and hang onto it these days is if you see yourself as a work-in-progress, and highlight that person to employers on our resume.
Putting a check mark in the Education box and touting the success you had in your last job are the quintessential “stuff that used to work.” If you want employers to value your expertise in today’s workplace and believe you will contribute that value to their success, you have to do what works today. You have to use Next Practices.
Thanks for reading,
Visit me at Weddles.com
Get My WorkStrong Blog By Email
I write a biweekly blog in addition to this newsletter. While this publication focuses on job search success, however, the blog is all about career success. About how to build a career that’s powerful enough to increase both the paycheck and the satisfaction you bring home from work. That’s why I call it WorkStrong.
As you know, the world of work has changed dramatically in the U.S. And, that change is permanent. So, once you gain employment, you could just as easily find yourself challenged to stay that way … unless you know and practice the new rules for career security.
If you want to learn what those rules are and how to put them to work for you, sign up for my free blog. It’ll be delivered to you by email. Simply click here to register.
Job Nation: The 100 Best Employment Sites
The American Staffing Association was kind enough to call me the “Zagat” of the online employment industry. And, just as Tim and Nina Zagat used their classic guides to identify the best restaurants, I have published a guide to the best employment sites on the Web.
Called Job Nation: The 100 Best Employment Sites on the Web, it’s my pick of the top job boards, career portals and professional networking sites on the Internet.
Every site is profiled with a complete consumer’s guide to its features, services and resources. That way, you can shop smart and pick the sites that will work best for you.
While admitting to some bias, I think Job Nation is the single best way to use the Internet to find a new or better job. And, it retails for just $14.95.
There’s Social & There’s Success
If you’re looking to connect with friends and colleagues, social media is your best bet. If, on the other hand, you’re looking for the keys to an effective job search and a healthy career, you’ll be better served with “success media.”
What constitutes “success media?”
Guides and other books that let you in on the secrets to finding, winning and holding on to the job of your dreams. They include:
Work Strong: Your Personal Career Fitness System. This book introduces a complete regimen of activities that will help you successfully compete for and hang onto the job of your dreams. Its one-of-a-kind program not only tells you what to do, but how to do it and how often.
The Career Activist Republic. This blockbuster of a book provides a provocative yet positive assessment of the changing world of work in the American economy and describes an innovative strategy that will enable you to avoid the pitfalls and capture the opportunities in this new environment.
The Success Matrix: Wisdom from the Web on How to Get Hired and Not Be Fired. This anthology collects the best of Peter Weddle’s columns on job search and career success. It is the only book you’ll find that provides a candid and totally up-to-date look at how to get and stay ahead in today’s workplace.
Recognizing Richard Rabbit. This fable for adults will entertain and delight you and help you out of the boxes that keep you from becoming the champion inside you. It is a novel and engaging way to recognize the talented person you are meant to be.