Stand Out. Be Noticed. Part 3

Part 3: Representative Project list.

representative project listA Representative Project List will include any and all projects in which you played a significant role. Keep this list on your personal computer and update every time you finish a project or just before leaving the office for the weekend. Think about the things you have accomplished that week and make note of them. When you first start your list, include everything you have accomplished. You can clarify and organize later.

Organize:
As you become senior, your projects will become more impressive. Begin organizing the list by practice area, from most to least impressive.

Eventually, a well-done representative project list should be no more than one page long, written in English, and highlight the projects most appropriate for the position.

Used for:
A representative project list can be used in two ways. When you have the dreaded performance review it is a great tool for demonstrating your achievements. Supervisors hate to do reviews. It is easy for them to either be unaware of — or forget — the important matters you have been involved in over the year.

Send the list before the review along with a note saying something along the lines of, “I thought you might like to take a look at this before we meet.”

Ready to hand out:
In the event you need to look for a job, it will be a great will also be a great addition to your resumé. Keep a representative project list up to date and demonstrate who you are and what you know. Preparing the list will help you stand out from other candidates.

Those who a prepared document let potential employers know they are organized, prepared, and can clearly describe strengths. It is important to stand out whether at work or during job a search.

Did you miss the first article in this series?
Click here: Refresh your Resumé.

Did you miss the second article in this series?
Click here: Keep it simple.

Stand Out. Be Noticed. Part 2

Part 2: Keep it simple.

The purpose of a resume is not to tell your whole life history, but is to give them enough information so they will want to continue to be interested enough they will set up an appointment for an interview.

To that end, keep your resume simple and easy to read. The below information will help.

keep it simpleSqueezing in too much information:
Many make the mistake of squishing information into a resumé by using a smaller font. Most eyeballs hitting your resumé will be over 40 years old. Don’t make them work so hard to read it.

 

keep it simpleHome Address:
A home address is no longer absolutely necessary, but including it is not a deal breaker.

Contact Info:
Include your personal email and personal cell number. Just imagine what could happen if a potential employer begins calling at your work number, or sending emails through your current organization’s system where no employee privacy exists.

Short and Sweet:
Too many resumés are long and complicated. I never take time to read the three or four page resumés I receive. Neither will anyone else. Keep your resumé as short and clear as possible. Preferably one page. This allows all the “cream” to rise to the top and stand out strong.

Goal Statement:
Despite what many ‘experts’ tell you, do not include a goal statement at the top of the resumé. It will eliminate the positions you will be considered for. If you say you absolutely want to be an insurance litigator or in HR, then by all means let them know. But if you are open to other placements, listing only one option will shut down your possibilities.

Placement of Skill Summary:
Forget highlighting your skills before you get to the body of the resumé. No one takes them seriously anymore because they often read just like everyone else’s. Refine, hone, and clarify skills you will list. Don’t throw everything on the page.

Current Work and Major Responsibilities:
Most employers are most interested in where you currently work, what your major responsibilities are, and how many times you have changed jobs.

Junior Employees — College, Honors, and Major Responsibilities:
Junior employees must put their college education and meaningful honors at the top of the resumé.  Future employers will be looking for them.

If you were employed at your two last positions for two or more years include your major responsibilities. Do not include menial tasks. They will make your resumé longer and no one will care.

Publications:
Only include publications in which you played a major role, are impressive, and recent. Long lists of publications will bore potential employers and could turn them off. When they ask, you should have another document ready to go that lists all your credits.

Interests: Depends.
If you feel including interests will help with your job search, then please only include those that are interesting or unique in some fashion. If you were ever or are still a member of a team sport, part of a band, run marathons, or whatever, include those. Employers like to hire interesting people and concentrate on those who have been part of a team, group or who display fortitude.

However, if this is not you, do not make anything up just to sound like you have done these.

Did you miss the previous article? Click here.
Read the next article: Representative Project List

 

Stand Out. Be Noticed. Part 1

Part 1: Refresh your Resumé

stand out be noticed refreshEven partners and associates — who may very well be happy as clams in their positions — should keep updated resumés at the ready. You would be surprised how many top-level partners and executives have resumés ready to go should an exciting opportunity come along.

A current resumé is essential. No one can guarantee their firm won’t fall apart, eliminate positions, or even terminate for any cause. Don’t be caught unprepared. Panic mode does not allow quick thinking and delays creation and sending of a complete and up-to-date resumé.

Stand Out. Be Noticed.

A great resumé should already be sitting in a file on your personal computer or offsite on your personal file storage portal (such as Dropbox.com) so that you have access to it when you want it. The file should never be on a company server because you have no expectation of privacy there and if logon credentials are revoked, you might not have access to it at all.

Rebuilding a resumé from scratch is no fun and can be crushing to the spirit. But maintaining a resumé need not be an overwhelming project.

 Read the next article for hints: Keep It Simple.

Enjoy this audio snippet from Audible.com.

Float Your Way to Success

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Life is a series of floating boards. You step on one board and your life goes in one direction, you choose another board and off you go on another adventure. The choice you make may have tiny or tremendous results.

For instance, if you had not attended your university you may not have met your spouse or had your children. How many boards have you stepped on that impacted your life or career. Some boards you choose, others come your way. Sometimes you have no choice but to jump from one to another.

Some decisions are overwhelmingly terrifying. Yet each links together bringing us to where we are today. Would you change your life, children, friends, or experiences?

Personally, I wouldn’t. I’ve stepped on many boards in my life.
I regret none.

As much as we like to believe we are in control, life is often messy and chaotic. The question is:


Can we handle getting dirty or dealing with chaos?

Some people thrive on messy situations and chaos while others become catatonic under the pressure. Some crave consistency dealing with life and its issues, but are happiest when things are smooth with few bumps in the road. Keeping their heads down, they pray the mess and chaos will just flow over them.

Few live lives we planned when young. This is neither good nor bad, it just is. Our personal lives may not be what we envisioned and our careers often take an entirely different course than we ever imagined.

It is interesting to find out folks courses of study was then learn what they are doing today. Sure, there are people whose families planned for them to be doctors or lawyers from the day they were conceived, but most of us started out in one direction, stepped on a different board and landed in a career that we never even considered.

How do you handle the unexpected?
How does your family react?

dsc01565When the unexpected eventually comes your way, never forget:

A different board awaits you.

A Letter to Daughters

Dear Daughters,

This is, in its most-simplest description, a love letter.

You’ve had the privilege of growing up in an era in which your dreams are defined by you — what you want, what you need — and within your grasp.

Whether you dream of being a stay-at-home mom (who works harder than anyone knows), a surgeon, or a teacher in an inner city school — whatever you dream of — you have opportunity to be anything you want to be and pursue what you want to pursue.

But it wasn’t always like this. You have reached this status on the shoulders of others who came before and fought battles you cannot imagine. This hard-won privilege should never be taken for granted.

qtq80-B9YOF6These days it is easy to look around your law school class and see as many women as men. Only thirty years ago this was not the case. Today, there are firms with large groups of female attorneys.

 

You can love who you want to love and marry who you want to marry.

Less than 10 years ago, being a member of the LGBT community made your life harder. Even today not everyone embraces those who belong to that group. However, because of these past battles, today who you are is far less controversial and, instead of fighting, you can get on with life!

dsc06363Having travelled to twenty-three countries, I was struck by the lack of opportunities available to women.

One thing you cannot control is where you are born.

It was an eye opening experience to observe so many around the world who still do not have a high opinion of the value women bring to their countries and cultures.

Be grateful you are in a country that offers opportunities to those who have the heart to work for them.

We, your mothers, worked hard and tirelessly so you could have such freedoms. We ask only that you keep those torches lit and the candles glowing for the next generations to come.

qtq80-WeFCLwYou are the heart of our hearts and mirrors of our souls, and the dreams of a future we’ve worked hard to allow you opportunity for.

With much love, Lee Ann

Dr. Henry Cloud: “Never Go Back.”

10 Things Successful People Never Do Again

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From observations of successful people, clinical psychologist and author of Never Go Back: 10 Things You’ll Never Do Again (Howard Books, June 2014), Dr. Henry Cloud has discovered certain “awakenings” that people have—in life and in business—that once they have them, they never go back to the old way of doing things. And when that happens, they are never the same: “The good thing is once you learn that lesson, you never go back. You never do it again.”

Excerpted From Dr. Cloud’s book:

1. Return to what hasn’t worked.
Whether a job, or a broken relationship that was ended for a good reason, we should never go back to the same thing, expecting different results, without something being different.

2. Do anything that requires them to be someone they are not.
We have to ask ourselves, “Why am I doing this? Am I suited for it? Does it fit me? Is it sustainable?” If the answer is no to any of these questions, you better have a very good reason to proceed.

3. Try to change another person.
When you realize that you cannot force someone into doing something, you give him or her freedom and allow them to experience the consequences. In doing so, you find your own freedom as well.

4. Believe they can please everyone.
Once you get that it truly is impossible to please everyone, you begin to live purposefully, trying to please the right people.

5. Choose short-term comfort over long-term benefit.
Once successful people know they want something that requires a painful, time-limited step, they do not mind the painful step because it gets them to a long-term benefit. Living out this principle is one of the most fundamental differences between successful and unsuccessful people, both personally and professionally.

6. Trust someone or something that appears flawless.
When someone or something looks too good to be true, he, she, or it is. The world is imperfect.

7. Take their eyes off the big picture.
For successful people, no one event is ever the whole story. Winners remember that – each and every day.

8. Neglect to do due diligence.
No matter how good something looks on the outside, it is only by taking a deeper, diligent, and honest look that we will find out what we truly need to know: the reality that we owe ourselves.

9. Fail to ask why they are where they find themselves.
One of the biggest differences between successful people and others is that in love and in life, successful people always ask themselves, what part am I playing in this situation?

10. Forget that their inner life determines their outer success.
The good life sometimes has little to do with outside circumstances. We are happy and fulfilled mostly by who we are on the inside. And our internal lives largely contribute to producing many of our external circumstances.

And, the converse is true: people who are still trying to find success in various areas of life can almost always point to one or more of these patterns as a reason they are repeating the same mistakes.

Everyone makes mistakes. But, what achievers do better than others is recognize the patterns that are causing those mistakes and never repeat them again.

A good thing to remember is this: pain is unavoidable, but repeating the same pain twice, when we could choose to learn and do something different, is certainly avoidable. I like to say, “we don’t need new ways to fail….the old ones are working just fine!” Our task, in business and in life, is to observe what they are, and never go back to doing them again.