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Jan Melnik, M.A., MRW, CPRW, CCM, Absolute Advantage

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Welcome to Career Thought Leaders Consortium

to your global think tank of career industry thought leaders! Explore our blog and website for valuable information, expertise and innovation in career coaching, resume writing, job search, social media, online identity management, networking and scores of other topics related to lifelong employment and career fulfillment.

Moving Learning from the Classroom to the Workplace

I just read an interesting article on how the Adidas Group has debuted a new approach to learning. With more than 51,000 employees around the globe, Adidas has, in the past, focused its learning budget on developing classroom-based curricula for job training. But in recent years, the company has switched their approach to integrating learning into the work environment, “recognizing that very little learning takes place in a formal classroom, with most on the contrary occurring on the job or when a new employee works with a mentor or a coach,” according to Jeanne Meister, writing for Now, the Adidas Group Learning Campus replaces classroom-only training with a digital learning environment that’s online, social, interactive, and accessible to everyone, all the time.     ... Read more

How to Get Your Government Paycheck

This infographic first appeared on Top Criminal Justice Degrees. Getting a job can be tough, especially if you have your sights set on a top government bureau.  The process for getting hired at the FBI, CIA, or Secret Service can be daunting.  There are multiple steps, including assessment tests and physical fitness tests, and sometimes the process can take a long time. This infographic will outline the steps for these three top government agencies, taking the mystery out of the process.  Good luck on your job hunt!       ... Read more

How Do Recruiters Read An Executive Resume?

Wouldn’t you like to know how recruiters read your resume? If you did know, you could leverage that knowledge to incorporate the right strategies into your resume, right? Believe it or not, recruiters are trained how to grab the most information in the least amount of time. By last count, they have shaved the time down from 10 seconds to 6 seconds, so you know your resume needs to be sharp to capture their interest. Jennifer McClure, president of Unbridled Talent, an HR and recruiting consulting firm, offers these tips to other recruiters on how to get the most out of reading a resume:     ... Read more

The Federal Vacancy Announcement

The Federal Vacancy Announcement The federal vacancy announcement is not a mystery, although it can see rather overwhelming when you first begin your federal job search. Many of my clients feel incapacitated simply by reading an announcement. Yes, they are long and very wordy, and sometimes even ridiculous in how much they require of an applicant, but never a mystery. The top 8 sections to thoroughly examine before apply to a federal vacancy announcement are:   ... Read more

What Job Seekers Should Know about Recruiters

At some point in your job search, you may encounter a recruiter who is searching for the perfect candidate to fill a job order. If you’ve never worked with one before, it can be helpful to understand more about how recruiters work. There are two types of recruiters: contingency and retained.       ... Read more

Turning Your Interviews into Conversations

When I’m asked for interview advice, I start with the reminder that the interview is not meant to be an interrogation. It’s a collaboration or dialogue between 2 individuals assessing whether 1 of them is a good fit for a company. The key here? ... Read more

The 3 Types of Networkers…Which One Are You?

Although we consistently hear all the praise for the importance and effectiveness of networking in our careers, it continues to remain elusive for many professionals. It's not bad when you are talking about networking with close contacts, but once you start talking about network building with complete strangers, then things get a little dicey. The common comments I hear are as follows: It's uncomfortable. It often doesn't really lead to anything. And it is time consuming.     ... Read more

Job Search Advice: Friend Version, Tip 2

I’m out of town this week (Liz will take care of you if you need help, just go to the Contact form)…. here’s a series of five things I’d tell a friend if he/she just started a job search.
Tip 2, Day 2: Find someone to be accountable to. If you can find and afford a professional coach, good for you.  You are lucky. Use them.  Don’t tell them what to do, just fit into their system, and DO what they say to do. If you can’t afford one, then find someone who you will be accountable to every single week. ... Read more

11 Mistakes During Your Federal Job Search

Avoid these 11 mistakes during your federal job search Federal job seekers often are frustrated with, overwhelmed by or puzzled over the complex federal hiring process. In their new book, Find Your Federal Job Fit, authors Janet M. Ruck and Karol Taylor explain that the “federal application process, which is unlike any other, can be cumbersome and confusing at times. It is based on a set of laws and regulations that were written for a specific purpose. Over time, layers of new laws were added. Eventually they created a morass of rules that now make up the federal hiring system.” Federal job seekers, especially those just starting their searches, often make mistakes during the application process that could easily be avoided. Ruck and Taylor highlight 11 mistakes that many federal job seekers make, and how to avoid them. The errors include:       ... Read more

College Summit: The Joys of Surprise and Making a Difference (and Even the Travails of a Norovirus)

I recently heard Anthony Robbins say that as long as you have your attention on other people, and as long as you are making a difference for others, there is no way you can possibly be depressed. He is so right. This past week, despite contracting a norovirus that gave me serious gastrointestinal distress as well as flu-like symptoms, I was in as good a mood as I’ve been in in a long time. Why? I was making a difference for a group of low-income high school students at College Summit, a national program that supports young leaders to create a culture where kids go to college. ... Read more