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March 2009

$2,000 For A Professional Resume Writer? Are You F***ing Kidding?

OK, I have been sitting on this for a few days now not sure what do about it and i wanted to cool down a bit before posting.

I met a dude who after 4.5 months of being out of work decided his resume needed some professional help.

He was right. He showed the original to me and it sucked. Sucked bad. Format, font, symbols, wording, it was awful. He tried. He meant well. Thankfully he realized it was an issue and wanted to do something about it.

So he went “shopping” for a professional resume writer. The guy makes $90K or so and spending some money on a resume was not a bad idea. I know some really good resume writers and they do a good job.

However, this dude found a “Resume Writing Guru”. Yep, that’s what it says on the “professional’s” “web site”. Professional is in quotes because as you will read that title is questionable. Web site is in quotes because his site looks like a 1st grader with color blindness built it.

$2,000 for the two page resume was the quote. WTF?!?!?!?!?!

I saw the end product. Much better than what he had, no doubt. Looked better. Read better.

The problem I have is the “professional” spent 30 minutes on the phone with the dude on the phone and had him fill out a 2 page form. That’s it. Nothing about past work experience. Nothing about what the dude was looking for.

Basically the “professional” cut and paste from the form into what looks like to me a template.

I get that this is not the norm. I get that resumes are one of the keys to getting the interview. I get that if a resume is holding back a dude from a $90K a year job investing in some help is a good thing.

But $2,000?

This wreaks of a “professional” taking advantage of someone in a difficult situation in a difficult time.

Thoughts On Best Buy Voluntary Buyout And Involuntary Layoff

Seems everyone is aware (but just in case) that in recent months Best Buy offered 4,000 corporate employees the chance to take a voluntary buyout. Numbers I hear are a few more than 500 applied for it and a few less than 500 were accepted.

Unfortunately 500 (to make the math simple) were not “enough” so the announcement of an involuntary layoff was made.

As I understand around 250 jobs will need to be eliminated but they have 210 internal jobs that need to be filled.

OK, these numbers are not what this blog post is about but I wanted to catch everyone up.

What this post is about is how Best Buy has handled the situation.

Let me be clear, anytime people are laid off, that sucks. And on this scale and in our community I am guessing that most of us know directly or indirectly (a degree or two of separation) someone who was impacted.

But unlike all the stories we hear about people finding out they are laid off via phone, email, or the ones given five minutes and a box with the escort out the door Best Buy has done an outstanding job (in my opinion) handling this situation:

  • Transparency – Best Buy has been very open about the changes that needed to be made. But more than that they have not tried to “hush” their employees from talking about it.

#bby500 is the Twitter tag used by Best Buy employees to talk with each other and share their thoughts. I monitored this quite a bit last week and even while folks were saying they were let go they also said how much they appreciated Best Buy was doing for them.

Barry Judge, Chief Marketing Officer, did this blog post My Thoughts On Best Buy’s “Voluntary Separation” Package. Read the comments, more people saying nice things about how Best Buy has handled this.

  • Severance and benefits – The voluntary layoff package varied but if one took it between 6 months and 1 year pay included along with 1 year of health and life coverage was included. The estimated cost of this is $60M.

For those who were caught up in the involuntary layoff they too have a good severance package.

  • Career support – Besides the usual outplacement service Best Buy has taken other steps to help those impacted. I was not aware of this until last week; Best Buy has a career services department. They have been holding classes on interviewing, resume writing, etc.

They have invited speakers from outside the company, including me, to present on career related topics. Feb 23rd (and again March 2nd) I did a LinkedIn and Social Media job search presentation.

Yesterday, Feb 25th, Best Buy held a career fair. An email was sent out to local companies (including my Minnesota Recruiters list) to ask if local employers would like to speak with those laid off. They had space for 30 companies. 110 or so replied. Yeah, they had a wait list of companies to recruit their former employees.

I hear 200+ former employees (and a few current ones) attended.

Do not mistake that I am “happy” about this situation. I have friends who are involved in both the voluntary and involuntary layoffs. This is not a great time to be doing a job search.

But my point is this, name another company who has gone to this length to try and do right by their now former employees? I am sure that Best Buy has not done everything perfect or right for everyone but I do suggest that given the economy and their circumstances they have done well.

I do have one issue with Best Buy. It would have been great if executives had been talking about this more in a public forum. Maybe they have been so busy with the process that there was no time for it but I know of a lot of companies around the country who have interest in what Best Buy has done.

Maybe just maybe some companies will learn from Best Buy that in tough times and when tough decisions are made that lay offs are numbers but people who live and work in the community, have mortgages, car payments and children or parents to care for and that they should do the best they can to help those who helped build their company.

FREE Job Search webinar: I have a killer resume, now what? Tips On Being Your Own Headhunter | Feb 26th 1 PM CST

Originally posted on Be Your Own Headhunter:

Tomorrow, Feb 26th at 1 PM CST I will be doing a free job search webinar. You can read about last week’s presentation by clicking Thoughts On First “Be Your Own Headhunter” Webinar and if you are new to this site click Welcome To Be Your Own Headhunter to find out more about this effort.

For more about this free presentation and to register click this link:

Feel free to pass these links on to anyone you know who may be doing a job search.

Thank you.

Free Job Search Webinar | Trial Run | February 19, 2009 | 11 AM CST

For the past 6 or 7 years (I have lost track) I have been doing a job search presentation(s) to groups of all ages and skills sets called “I have a killer resume, now what? Tips on being your Headhunter.”

The idea is after being a recruiter for 11+ years I know how I would do a job search. And essentially, it is what I do every day to market myself to potential clients. I am trying to find the same hiring managers, recruiters, decision makers and executives that job seekers are.

The presentation itself is very laid back as is my style. I do use the words “dude” and “sucks” a few times. It just happens.

The content is unique and many have called it aggressive. I see most job seekers reacting to an online job or newspaper ad. My belief is being reactionary in a job search and doing what everyone else is doing leads you to compete with a lot of people for that one job.

If you know about it before the masses you will have a much better chance of getting it.

Topics to be covered include:

  • Networking, what it is, how to get started, and who to contact
  • Using LinkedIn and Facebook as job search tools
  • Effective ways of using email to introduce yourself
  • Finding hiring manager contact names
  • Creating your 10 second Sound Bite and the 30 second Elevator Pitch
  • Tracking your job search

The presentation lasts between 50-75 minutes depending on the number of questions.

This is the first webinar I have ever done and I have been very anxious about it. I am used to speaking in front of group from 20-200 so doing one via phone and Internet is a bit odd to me. I like to see people and see how they react to what they are hearing.

So this is a trial run. Surely I will have a miss step along the way but I do promise to make it worth your time.

My plan is to be doing this and other job search and career related webinars as part of my new site Be Your Own Headhunter. Not much to look at yet but a few more sleepless nights and you will be pleased with waht you will find.

Here is the link for the webinar:


***All attendees will receive a free PDF of “Dig Your Job”, written by G.L. Hoffman, Chairman of JobDig.***

A special note. Many thanks to the folks at JobDig for inviting me to their office and providing the space and support to do this presentation.

You may know of JobDig as a newspaper and online job board but they have many products including LinkUp, a job aggregator similar to Indeed and SimplyHired but LinkUp only uses corporate career pages, and for my recruiter friends JobDig Tracker, an Applicant Tracking System (ATS).

Looking forward to tomorrow and if you listen to the webinar please provide any feedback you have.

Minnesota Morning

Being a guy who watches the stock market and economy closely I understand at a freshman level college course what is going on. I get what the issues are and understand most of the ideas to fix it.

Most folks do not follow this like I do. And rightly so. I am a little nuts for following this stuff like I do.

Then again, it is part of my job to follow market and industry trends and as we know and are experiencing labor markets go with the economy.

Our elected officials have and are missing opportunities to speak to the American people and explain the heck is going on.

Continue reading "Minnesota Morning" »

Minnesota Morning

Whoa, two weeks since my last Minnesota Morning. Bad, bad blogger.

I have been really busy creating presentations for both recruiters and job search, networking and LinkedIn. There will be many posts, news and events that will come out this week including a small but significant update to Be Your Own Headhunter.

I am also working on stuff for the Minnesota Recruiters group including webinars and the first event of 2009.

Below you will find some links from the past two weeks that I have passed around via email and/or posted on @MNHeadhunter, my Twitter account.

Recruiter and HR:

Economy and Company News:

Career and Job Search:

Minnesota IT Jobs And IT Volunteer Opportunities With Minnesota Non Profits

The following new Minnesota IT jobs and IT volunteer opportunities have been added on the MN Headhunter Volunteer Page:


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