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Posts Tagged ‘Society for Human Resource Management’

A few days ago I stumbled upon a link to a great video posted by SHRM titled “How to get HIRED — tips for HR pros looking for jobs.” While it is short (just 1:57), the video is very inspiring and helpful for those looking to advance their HR career. I have found that getting advice and insight from successful HR professionals, whether it be in person or through the media, can make a huge difference in your job search if you use and apply it correctly. While this video contains the contributions of several different HR Professionals, I was able to pick out a few common themes.

The first speaker on the video is Karen Rieck, a VP of HR. Ms. Rieck talks about the importance of continuing your education and developing yourself through certifications (PHR, SPHR, GPHR) and advanced schooling. I couldn’t agree more on the topic. By not furthering your education you will be falling behind those who are. Never let your skills become stagnant, especially those related to your field of interest. Human Resources is such a diverse and ever-changing career field; you must stay on top of your game. Ms. Rieck also mentions she looks for someone with an interest in the whole business and who “takes on challenges outside of HR.” Your knowledge and your experiences will not only give you the chance to develop your skills, but show your character and what you may have to offer the organization. I touched on this in my last post about transferable skills from previous experiences.

Brian Cox, an HR Operations Director, is the second contributor to the video. Like Ms. Rieck, he also acknowledges that he looks for a candidate with interest in continuously advancing their education. Another quality Mr. Cox recognizes as important for HR professionals is global experience, e.g. working for an international company or working abroad. So once again, we realize how important it is for us to keep learning and take on unique challenges. I believe experience is a part of learning, too. To create a diverse workplace, an organization needs diverse employees. If you have a distinguishing experience, such as working on an international scale, you will be more qualified to add to that diversity, as well as adapt to a new environment.

Although Kellie Dunn-Doggeman, HR Manager, had the shortest contribution to the video, her message was quite clear. In the modern business, globalization is very real and happening for more companies every day. Since interaction with foreign countries, people, and businesses is rapidly increasing, an organization will not only look for HR professionals with international experience, but multi-lingual skills as well. Despite the fact that English is the most prevalent language used in business, we cannot (and should not) always expect that other countries to conform to us. By showing respect and knowledge in other cultures, we have a greater chance for success.

The last speaker on the video is Lisa Kluczinsky, HR Manager. I liked her contribution because she mentioned what we all have heard and acknowledge as important, but what very few people actually do: research the job you are applying for and show your passion for the position. There are many ways of educating yourself, and researching companies is one of those ways. Hiring managers want to see not only your interest in HR, but your interest in the organization as well. Be prepared to answer questions, such as why you want to work for that particular company, and even why you want to work in HR. That extra step could be what pushes you ahead of the rest.

Overall, I believe there’s a lot we can take away from this video, but as I mentioned before, there are some common themes we need to take note of. A successful HR Professional continues developing themselves through education, certifications, global experience, and research. They take on challenges and are passionate about what they do. After watching this video, I feel a renewed confidence in my future as a Human Resources Professional and excitement for the experiences and opportunities a career in HR has to offer.

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In this post, I talked about the beginning of my job search and some of the mistakes I realized I was making, particularly sending most of my resumes into a big black hole never to be seen or heard of again. Since I didn’t feel like delaying my HR career any longer, I decided to change my strategy. I went back to the basics.

In order to find and obtain your dream job, you have to learn as much as possible about it. I began by simply googling “What is Human Resources?” and went from there. It may seem simple, but sometimes even if you think you know the answer to a question, you might not. Besides, a little review never hurt anyone.

Other possible searches can be more specific. Search about different departments, concentrations, job titles, salaries, companies, etc. This will tell you what you should expect when applying or interviewing for a job, give you a clearer idea of what position is right for you, and it will prepare you when dealing with tough questions during an interview. If your search goes anything like mine, you’ll end up overwhelmed with information and sites needing to be bookmarked.  And it doesn’t stop there.

I recommend searching for ways to get involved with the professional community as much as you can. My researching and reviewing stage began leading me towards searching about HR volunteering opportunities, local HR businesses, and HR social communities and meetings, such as SHRM. Don’t be afraid to email people with your questions. Inquire about volunteering at their company, local meetings they attend, etc. I have found many professionals to be extremely open and helpful. Just remember not to be pushy about it and try to make it as mutually favorable as possible. You’re asking a favor of them; they don’t have to help you.

In addition, start to get super involved on social networking sites, such as LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, etc. Connect with professionals in your field of interest and ask them if it would be okay to email them with a couple of your questions. Follow companies you want to work for, read and comment on blogs, and stay on top of the latest and greatest news in the industry. This is a full-time job in itself, so don’t be too hard on yourself if you fall behind. It gets easier over time and you’ll develop your own strategies for dealing with the constant flow in information.

For me, the most helpful job search strategy has been networking through close family and friends. The people who know you on a more personal level are more likely to advocate for you and set you up with some great opportunities. If you are lucky enough to be closely connected to a professional in your field of interest, try to set up a phone call, meeting, or informational interview. Again, these people are busy and making time for you, so make sure you let them know how much you appreciate their help.

After revising my job search strategies, I am spending a large portion of my time researching and getting connected to the HR community. As a result, I don’t always have time to apply to many positions. But I don’t feel too bad about that. When I do search for positions now, I am pickier about what kind of job I am looking for and my search has become a lot more focused. If I apply for a job now, I know it’s something I want and am qualified to do — not just another shot in the dark.

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