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The Now, The New & The Next in Careers

6 Things for Ex-Prisoners to Kill in Their Job Search

22 Jun 2013 2:37 PM | Anonymous

By Debra Ann Matthews

If I may be so bold as to offer advice to any person who has a felony or a criminal record and is seeking job opportunities, let me first say this to you: You are a citizen of these United States and as such, you have the rights and privileges that we all do and that is to strive towards the pursuit of happiness in America. As you chase after your next job, may I encourage you to do the following:

1.  Kill these: • the pity story • the "no one will hire me" story • the here is my sad, bad, feel sorry me situation story • and lastly, the "I won't work for minimal wage" story

2. Understand this: Any business, company or hiring official may be willing to give you an opportunity to interview with their company, if they, understand the value that you can bring to helping them meet their company's daily, weekly, monthly, and quarterly goals. Those goals involve: #1-solving a problem for customers successfully; #2-meeting goals; #3-strategic thinking to maintain safety on the job at all times; #4-increasing profits; #5-maintaining and increasing customer base; and #6- getting the job done while getting along with others on the job.

3. Convince your next employer that you are able to help them meet their goals as you identify your skills and overall value on a resume and / or job application. Having said that, here are 2 ways to get started and demonstrating your value to your future employer: • Visit your local one stop career center or Goodwill Career Solutions Center and pick up a generic application. Fill it out and ask the staff to make 25 copies for you to pass out as you begin to network. Use your completed generic application to fill out online jobs and paper application. • Attend the resume writing seminar, usually offered free of charge at career centers, urban leagues, community centers, shelters or area churches. Be sure to highlight your customer skills, previous work experiences and other employability skills that you possess using action words like achieved, attained, kept abreast of, committed to, and operated within...

4. Keep in mind this newsflash: It actually takes every job seeker time to find a job. It may take 6 weeks or 6 months or longer to obtain a job. Let me recommend that you apply to 100 jobs a week. Keep in mind that hiring officials have many job selecting responsibilities including recruiting, completing paperwork, checking references, interviewing and running background checks. Once again, in order for hiring officials to select ideal job candidates, the process takes time.

5. Develop a 30 second introduction that incorporates your skills and abilities to get the job done. For instance, practice saying such a spiel as this: "Hello, may I speak with the manager on duty. My name is ___. How are you today? I am a customer service specialist who has over 3 years' experience working with a team of 12 loading and unloading a 60 ton semi-truck. I would like to apply for a position with your company, if I may."

6. Proceed with vigor, enthusiasm and determination to make application to as many jobs as you can every single day until you start to receive interviews. Be sure to write down the interviewers name or ask for a business card and follow up each interview of companies that really interest you with a thank you letter reiterating your skills and enthusiasm to work with the company.

Debra Ann Matthews and the staff of Let Me Write It For You offers clients assistance in identifying the best ways to highlight their skills and proven attributes to capture the attention of hiring officials in their ideal jobs with targeted resumes, LinkedIn profiles and career coaching.

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