Friday, March 13, 2009

More Job Fairs

The Career Place library site has added a list of jobfairs to their website. It is on their right sidebar about halfway down under the heading "CAREER FAIRS".

CVJS recently announced an open house at Comsys. This was kind of a jobfair with just one (big and quality) employer. It was very well run, not a mad house like employment guide's was.

The employment guide hosted two very crowded job fairs in the last two months. I'm not sure that their exhibitors were much to get excited about. Their jobfairs web site is here. They give some advice on jobfairs here. More advice on jobfairs and job searching can be found at the career center links in my previous post.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Job Fairs

So anybody at the Employment Guide mad house today... Jeez.

I've been to that location before and when I saw the cars circling, and the hundreds of people outside waiting to get in I knew it would be a mad house. But I figured I was there so I'll check it out.

Don't be discouraged, this was not what I'd call a tier 1 event. I usually advise people to go to the tier 2 or 3 events as a way to practice your pitch, but this was so crowded that wasn't easy to do unless you wanted to spend the full 4 hours. Lucky the fire marshal didn't show up, he would have closed them down.

I didn't see all the companies listed on their advance brochure. Usually this would be a blue collar event, but I was surprised to see the number of suits, made even worse by a long wait outside.

The CSU event in a month is more of a tier one event. It may be crowded, but its in a bigger venue, the likelihood of no-shows is less, and there is a higher caliber of employer there too. Although with unemployment so high, who knows, you may want to get there early.

The LinkedIn CCPL group has a discussion on the schedule for upcoming jobfairs. I'll repeat them here for those who aren't part of the CCPL Job Club with thanks to Bonnie.

1. Lakeland Community College.

Mini-Job Fair
Wednesday, February 11, 2009
Time: 10 am to 1 pm
Location: A-Bulding (between Bookstore & Counseling)

Their career center is here:

2. University of Akron

Thursday, February 12, 2009
10:30 a.m. - 3:30 p.m.
Student Union Ballrooms

3. Cleveland State University

Career Services Center 30th Annual Spring Career Fair
Friday, February 27, 2009
9:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m.

Their career center is here:

4. Cuyahoga Community College

Western Campus on Wednesday, April 1, 2009
Metro Campus on Wednesday, April 15, 2009
Eastern Campus on Thursday, April 30, 2009
Times are 10 a.m. - 2 p.m.

Their career center is here:

5. Idealist Nonprofit Career Fair

Wednesday, April 8, 2009
11:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.
Case Western Reserve University Mandel Center for Nonprofit Organizations
Thwing Student Center

Status: Second Draft - CCC added 03/03/09

Monday, January 12, 2009

Dangerous Internet Presence

There are so many interesting things on the Internet, blogs, social networking. And outside work you may find an interesting home for your pet peeve, political view, or hobby. But the Internet is not really partitionable between personal and work.

My advice, if its personal, no matter how harmless it may seem, keep it anonymous, written under a pseudonym. Why? Because you can make only one first impression, and what impression something may make to your employer or a potential employer may do irreparable harm. Sure you should have freedom of speech and expression, technically, but practically, employers look, and may be offended. Its not right, but it happens. So better safe than sorry and publish under an assumed name.

Your real name is your brand, protect it. Use it only in the most professional way possible, in a way that will promote you as a desirable professional. No politics, no viewpoints, no controversy. Sound boring? It is, but its safe.

A salesman (and that's every job seeker who needs to sell themselves) can sometimes take risks if he knows his audience. He can tell an off color joke or talk about party excess, if he really knows his audience well enough to know they won't take offense. But on the Internet, you don't know your audience, so you need to exercise caution.

LinkedIn is a professional Internet presence. But I've seen people put some questionable personal dialog in their public profile. I'd say that is ill advised. Facebook is becoming a business networking tool. I haven't looked at Facebook close enough yet, but I know that Myspace is just not a good vehicle. Myspace is too social, too informal, not suitable for business unless you are in the entertainment industry. Do you have interests in that area, does it appeal to you? Fine, register under an assumed name, not your real name, not your professional brand.

So sell yourself on the Internet, but express yourself anonymously.

Local Job Search Groups

Click here for a list of local Job Clubs.

As I mentioned elsewhere, check Chagrin Valley Job Seekers and The Career Center as two highly recommended starting points.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Organizing your job search

At today's CCPL Job Club meeting Jim brought up the topic of organizing your job search.

Web Sites

Jim mentioned an interesting online link that can help you called Jibber Jobber, that organizes your information in a spreadsheet like table. Click here to see videos explaining the service and here to read the FAQ. As with many web sites, there is a free portion and a priced portion. Click here for an explanation of their premium service.

Jibber Jobber Update: Its interesting to see the CEO noticed this post several hours after it was made (sounds like Google Alert) and commented here. Such personal involvement is rare. Click on his Blogger name to see his profile and the blogs he's involved in. Want to see what the press is saying about Jibber Jobber, take a look at the bottom of their home page and click on the trade press logos.

I am intrigued by this new web service, stay tuned for updates to this post and an upcoming post with more details. Thanks to Jim for taking the time to find this site and tell us about it. I'd like to point out the value of our LinkedIn discussion group as a means for sharing this information with members who missed the meeting.

Another web site Resume Spider was mentioned in a recent CVJS post. Stay tuned to that message thread for other people's experiences. If you aren't a member of CVJS, you should look into becoming one. CVJS (Chagrin Valley Job Seekers) is one of the oldest, largest, most organized job seeker groups in the area. After attending a meeting and filing out a registration you can be granted access to their very active discussion group and many informative files on their Yahoo Group site. Click here for meeting information.

Here's a few of my ideas, I'd love to hear yours too, as a comment here, at the CCPL Job Club LinkedIn discussion or as a discussion on the companion group page.

PC files

Build a directory structure to hold your files, rather than have them intermingled in My Documents. Under the top level JOBSEARCH directory you may want to include the following subdirectories.
  • Communication - resumes/letters sent
  • Companies - info on target companies
  • Contact/Network - info on people related to job search
  • Jobs - job leads
  • News - affecting the job search or target companies
  • Resources - info on how to conduct a jobsearch, articles, etc.
  • Skills - skills inventory, Success stories, info to draw on for cover letters and customized resumes


Obviously you use word for your resume and cover letters. But you can use it for more things too.

Rather than print job descriptions from the web, I create a word document to hold the information. I copy and paste from the web site into a word document. I add an outline structure (using Heading n styles) so that I can expand, collapse or drill down. I indent, highlight, make bullet lists, change font size, so that the description is more readable than one large block of text. I add sections on company research, contact, and interview preparation. Rather than lots of different printouts that are hard to read, I have one comprehensive document to refer to before or during an interview.


Excel is a convent way to make a simple flat data base. If you define it as a data table, you can have auto filter headings that allow you to filter or sort the data.


I use an outliner application that runs on my PC and syncs with my smartphone/PDA. For any Palm users, the software I use is Shadow by Codejedi Inc.. This software allows me to easily make a hierarchical checklist with start/target/completion dates and easily filter the outline to see items I would like too. Updates and filters can be done on a PC or the PDA.


Today's phones are becoming smarter, many have calendar, todo lists, address books, etc. I set up a separate jobsearch category for my job search in my calendar, to do list and address books for quick and easy access. I also setup a Callback category in my address book to park contacts that need a callback.


The important thing is that it has to be your system, easy, convenient, low maintenance, and accessible.

Well that's a few of my ideas, lets hear yours.... Please!!!

Any experiences on those two web sites Jibber Jobber or Resume Spider would be very helpful.

Status: First Draft - Last update 01/09/09 10:30 PM