paNASH blog


Sunday Inspiration: Don’t Let Fear Stop You (Part 1)

Welcome to “Sunday Inspiration,” a bi-weekly devotional for those seeking spiritual encouragement in the pursuit of their passions. Each post comes from an outside resource (as referenced). I hope these posts will inspire and motivate you in your life and career in addition to our weekly original blog posts. Enjoy!

“He who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion.” Php 1:6 NIV

Has God called you to do something you don’t feel capable of doing? Could you think of a dozen others better suited for the job? It doesn’t matter what you think, God didn’t choose somebody else! He chose you in spite of your limitations and insecurities. Your inadequacies don’t surprise Him. In fact, His “power works best in weakness” (2Co 12:9 NLT). Jon Walker says: “You may…hide your weaknesses from others, but you can’t hide them from God. He created you (do you think He made a mistake?). He created you with weaknesses to keep you on your knees…without them to push you back to God you’ll get prideful…and He won’t allow you to use them as an excuse for avoiding your mission or ignoring your purpose. If God is calling you to a monumental task, He will equip you to complete it—and that includes the Holy Spirit working from inside you. So focus on His strength, not yours. Don’t think about how incapable you are for the task. Remember, God is bigger than anything you face, no matter how overwhelming it may appear.” The Bible says we were “created in Christ…to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do” (Eph 2:10 NIV). God’s plans are never an afterthought. He designed you for a specific purpose, and the One who “began a good work in you will carry it on to completion.” So instead of letting fear stop you, let it motivate you to get up and get going!

Source:  https://www.jentezenfranklin.org/posts/dont-let-fear-stop-you-1

Are You Ready for the Future? How to Avoid Technological Unemployment

“Where do you see yourself in 5-10 years?” This is a common job interview question, but it’s also one you should ask yourself. Even if you’re not currently interviewing for a new job. Why? Because in five to ten years (or less), you may be interviewing for a new job after having been replaced by artificial intelligence in your current job.

Think it can’t happen to you? The phenomenon of “technological unemployment” is happening at a much faster rate than in the previous century. Corey Koehler of SideHustleX discusses the ramifications of technological unemployment and how it will impact the future of work:

The Future Of Work: Something Called Technological Unemployment

The Future of Technological Unemployment

Unlike in the previous century, robots aren’t just stealing factory jobs. They’re stealing jobs at various levels in almost every industry, including the legal and medical fields. Eventually, robots will even replace doctors and lawyers! Can you imagine it? You better, because your job could be next.

What will you do then?

Will you panic? Or will you prepare?

Will you make yourself adaptable and marketable for the new human jobs that don’t yet exist? Will you know how to market yourself in a modern job market? And will you know how to create your own job and be your own boss if reality requires it?

There’s Good News

Now this all sounds like a lot of doom and gloom, but with every wave of robot-stealing-jobs comes another wave of newly created jobs for humans. The people most likely to be hired for the jobs that don’t yet exist will be the ones who are the most proactive in their career planning.

Therefore, career coaching is so important. It’s not just for the currently unemployed, but also for the employed (for now) folks. It’s why I’ve created paNASH’s new coaching track:  the Career Growth Track.

This track includes:

  • Successful on-boarding in your new job/role/business
  • Preparation for promotion and advancement opportunities
  • Transition planning
  • Establishing yourself as an industry expert
  • Staying relevant in your industry
  • Methods for asking for a pay raise or increasing your rates
  • “Fire”-proofing yourself
  • Maintaining joy and challenge in your career
  • Creating your own opportunities

How to Stay Relevant

Career coaching has always been important, but it looks different today. No longer is it just about helping you find a job or helping you progress in your career. It’s also about helping you be creative and be open to unexpected opportunities, including possibly working for yourself. It’s about helping you recognize where your various past experience is leading you next into an ever-changing world. And how to connect the dots from your past experience to new work that’s yet to be created. It’s the only way to stay relevant in the job market of the future.

To learn more about paNASH’s new Career Growth Track, email your questions to me at lorib@yourpassioninlife.com.

The Secret to Perfect Behavioral Interview Answers

UGH! Behavioral interview questions. No job seeker enjoys answering these “tell me about a time when” questions. Myself included. They’re just as dreaded as the “What’s your greatest weakness?” question.

I can remember back in grad school doing my first mock interview with the career center on campus. It was very intimidating, even more so than any real interview I’ve ever had. They video taped it which of course was even more horrifying. And I was really bad at answering the behavioral interview questions.

It was actually this experience and what I learned from it that made me decide to go into career advising. A year later I was working as an intern in the same career center. Eventually I became the director of a college career center and then started my own career coaching business.

You have more experience than you think

I remember my mock interview like it was yesterday. A few years ago I found the video and watched the cringe-worthy performance (through my fingers). I’d used the same example for every behavioral question because I thought I didn’t have any other “real” experience to pull from. After all, I was just a lowly graduate assistant with only one assistantship under my belt.

But now I realize this wasn’t true. I could’ve pulled from so many other experiences for more variety of answers:  my part-time jobs from college, my work as an orientation leader at my undergrad, my leadership role in my student organization, my class projects. I could’ve even pulled from my work on my passion projects.

The tried-and-true method vs. modern experience

The formula for how to answer behavioral interview questions hasn’t changed much since my grad school days. But the way people work has, therefore giving job seekers a new way to sell themselves in an interview.

Here’s what I mean. When answering a behavioral interview question, you always want each answer to follow a method similar to the “CAR” method:

  • C:  State the CHALLENGE you faced.
  • A:  Describe the ACTION you took.
  • R:  Indicate the RESULTS of your action.

But unlike what you may have thought in the past, your examples don’t have to all come from traditional job experiences. Today, people have side-hustles, freelance assignments, passion projects, and greater access to creative pursuits. These bodies of work may be very different, but they all demonstrate your creativity, project management skills, and problem-solving skills. All things employers seek in potential employees.

The secret to perfect behavioral interview answers

The secret to answering behavioral interview questions perfectly is to gather relevant examples frpm ALL your sources of experience (paid, unpaid, volunteer, stuff done for fun, etc.). Then, tell a single interesting story for each question that connects the dots for your listener. Show how your “soft skills” used on your own projects will benefit the company on their projects. Hard data (quantifiable results) and testimonials (qualitative results) will drive home your points, so always include them in each answer.

Also, anticipate further questions. When practicing your examples, listen for holes in your information triggering a need for clarification or more details. A friend or a career coach is more likely to help you recognize those holes, so get assistance. By addressing those areas right away, the interviewer won’t have to keep probing. You’ll be a hero because you made their job easier by providing all the important info without being asked or reminded to.

The best way to prepare

There’s no way to prepare for every commonly asked behavioral interview question. There are just too many. The only way to really predict which ones you’ll get is to look on Glassdoor to see if there are any interview questions listed for your particular job opening. However there’s no guarantee they’ll ask the same questions this time around.

Instead, the best use of your time and energy is to look at the list of required skills in the job ad, and come up with a different story for each skill. This is more manageable since that list is finite. Always choose stories that show how you’ve best demonstrated the skill.

By focusing on the list of skills, you’ll have enough examples to use as answers for the unexpected questions. Most importantly, you’ll be able to connect those dots from your past experience to your future experience. Don’t forget to use the CAR method when drafting your stories.

Pulling from ALL your experience is a great strategy for someone who has a lengthy gap in their employment history. It’s also a good approach for recent grads with little to no professional experience. Click here to see how this has worked successfully for Tanner Christensen who landed a job as a product developer at Facebook with very little experience.

For more job interview tips, keep an eye out for my upcoming online program, Steps to Acing the Interview. Click here to receive notifications on details such as release date and pricing.

Sunday Inspiration: What You Must Overcome (Part 3)

Welcome to “Sunday Inspiration,” a bi-weekly devotional for those seeking spiritual encouragement in the pursuit of their passions. Each post comes from an outside resource (as referenced). I hope these posts will inspire and motivate you in your life and career in addition to our weekly original blog posts. Enjoy!

“Though it cost all you have, get understanding.” Pr 4:7 NIV

The third thing you must overcome on your way to success is ignorance. As writer Don Wood quipped, “Stupid is forever; ignorance can be fixed.” Far too often we don’t think realistically, or we fail to seek out the information and expertise we need. Edison failed many times, but his eventual success didn’t come from luck—it came from preparation. Many of us undervalue knowledge. For example, because computers allow us to try and to fail so many times, we don’t take time to read the manual. Because we’re so rushed, we’re reluctant to stop and find out what we really need to know. Because young people feel pressured into getting a job, often they fail to see the value of investing time in higher education. Golf champion Jack Nicklaus said, “Learn the fundamentals of the game and stick to them. Band-Aid remedies never last.” You may be fortunate enough to get promoted beyond your level of competence. But if your knowledge doesn’t keep up with your position, you’re doomed to fail. Here are some scriptural words to live by: “You’re blessed when you meet Lady Wisdom, when you make friends with Madam Insight. She’s worth far more than money in the bank; her friendship is better than a big salary. Her value exceeds all the trappings of wealth; nothing you could wish for holds a candle to her. With one hand she gives long life, with the other she confers recognition. Her manner is beautiful, her life wonderfully complete. She’s the very Tree of Life to those who embrace her. Hold her tight—and be blessed!” (Pr 3:13-18 TM).

Source:  https://www.jentezenfranklin.org/posts/things-you-must-overcome-3

Should You Share Your Passions on Your Resume?

I’ve critiqued resumes for nearly 20 years, and oftentimes I’ll see an “Interests” section on a resume. One of the most memorable “Interests” sections I saw included “eating peanut butter.” Yes, you read that right. Someone actually put on her resume she likes to eat peanut butter. And she wasn’t applying for a job as a taste-tester at Skippy!

Clients will ask me, “Should I have an ‘Interests’ section on my resume?” and there’s no right or wrong answer to this. Allow me to make this a little clearer.

When it’s wrong to share your passions on your resume:

  • When you don’t have enough room on your resume because of all the great accomplishments and results you have listed from your work experience. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again:  accomplishments are KING on a resume. This is what your reader most wants to see, so give your audience what they want first.
  • When your life passions are totally unrelated to the job for which you’re applying. Again, know your audience!
  • When your life passions may initially be viewed as odd. While liking peanut butter it is not unusual, it could seem strange to include it on a resume. (All I could picture was her with peanut butter smeared all over her face – not a picture of professionalism!)

When it’s right to share your passions on your resume:

  • When you don’t have enough work experience to fill a full page.
  • When your life passions might be relevant to the job. For example, if you love golf and the job will require you to take clients on golf outings to network and close sales, then it’s appropriate. Or, if you’re passionate about playing basketball and the job requires you to work with youth in an after school program that promotes healthy living, then it’s appropriate.
  • When your life passions are relevant to your work passions and have prepared you for the skills needed in the job. For instance, if you like doing improv, that skill is often a basis for good sales skills. A love for blogging can be a plus for a job requiring strong writing and/or social media skills. A passion for coaching little league can translate into good leadership skills.
  • If you’ve completed a passion project that would be of interest to your reader and would showcase your skills.

Always be professional

Whatever you choose to include, always make sure you present it in a way that looks and sounds professional. Perhaps it makes sense to include it on a section other than an “Interests” section. Or, maybe you rename the section heading to “Work-Related Passions” (which sounds more dynamic and attention-grabbing than “Interests,” don’t you think?).

Also, help the reader connect the dots on how your passions will benefit the company. Remember, your resume isn’t about you. It’s about the company and what you can do for them! Let your passion for them shine through in your resume, your interview, and all of your communication and interactions with them.

For more tips on what to include and what not to include on your resume, subscribe to the paNASH newsletter. I’ll send out announcements for the on-demand Resumes That Get You the Interview program, due out later this month.