7 Keys to a Successful Interview After Being Fired

Getting fired from a job almost always provokes mixed emotions; you may be shocked, dismayed if you were let go over an honest mistake, or alternately, relieved if you had been laboring under a superior with unrealistic expectations for months or years. No matter your specific situation you must face the same imminent hurdle as everyone else who’s ever been fired: Figuring out how to handle your next job interview. Interviewing after being fired is a delicate process, one wherein honesty, diplomacy, and professionalism must be precisely balanced.

If you’re struggling to understand how you ought to present yourself and your situation to a potential employer, the 7 job interview tips below should help you to develop successful post-termination interview tactics:

  1.  Deal with your emotions before tackling the interview.

It’s inevitable that the question of why you left your last job will come up during interviews, and if your emotions are still running hot, your answer is almost guaranteed to go over poorly. You may commit a major interview faux pas like speaking negatively about your former workplace, you may give the impression that you cannot think calmly under pressure, or you may make your work ethic look less than admirable.

As such, it’s vital to work through the emotions connected to being fired before you attempt a job interview. Talk to a friend or career counselor and don’t hold back feelings of shame, sadness, anger, etc. Work it out so that you can start your post-termination interviews with a clean slate, ready to discuss your dismissal with frankness and positivity.

  1.  Get your confidence back.

Being fired can leave deep wounds in a person’s self-esteem, even if the termination was unfair and the employee in question knows they didn’t really do anything terribly wrong. Alas, we can’t walk into job interviews with these scars showing; most interviewers decide who they will hire within just 3 minutes, largely based on how confident and professional that person seems. Things like assertive body language, eye contact, and action-oriented language make a huge difference during the interview process.

Prior to tackling an interview after you have been fired, you should, therefore, do something to rebuild your confidence: Volunteer, for example, or participate in a sport or hobby you excel at. Volunteering has the bonus of padding your resume so that your termination is not the most recent item on it.

  1.  Don’t speak ill of your former employer. 

Yes, this can be a challenge if he or she really did unfairly fire you, but it’s necessary to be polite and positive about your last boss no matter what he or she did. Speaking ill of your former employer will not show your interviewer that your dismissal was not your fault; it just makes you look unprofessional (and will likely make your interviewer concerned that you will speak badly of his or her company as well).

  1.  Don’t lie.

 While it’s important to frame the facts in as positive a light as possible, one should never outright lie about what occurred surrounding a termination. Research reveals that over 70 percent of interviewers can detect a lie immediately (whether expressed vocally or written into a resume), and most will absolutely refuse to hire anyone they catch trying to falsify the details of their work experience. Ergo, you should absolutely be honest about what happened—but refer to the point below for tips on how to candidly explain your termination.

  1.  Practice explaining your dismissal.

In interviews, semantics matter. While you should be direct when talking about what happened at your prior place of employment, there’s a world of difference between saying “I was let go because they gave me too much work to do and I couldn’t handle it,” and saying, “After my colleague left, my boss added her workload to mine, and I struggled to keep up. However, I learned the importance of being extremely organized from that experience and have since developed better time-management skills.” The latter response adds context to the situation without speaking negatively about the interviewee’s prior workplace. It also shows that the interviewee has thought carefully about his or her role in the termination and is serious about doing better.

  1.  Take responsibility.

Another important aspect of the response above is that the interviewee does not try to avoid taking the blame for being dismissed—even though the situation was somewhat unfair. He or she is willing to look at his or her mistakes honestly, own up to them, and learn from them, which conveys an image of maturity and professionalism.

Remember, your prospective employer isn’t looking for perfection; he or she is looking for accountability and problem-solving skills, so if you show said traits, you should be able to make a graceful recovery from your termination.

  1.  Be positive, then bring things back to the present.

Above all else, once you have respectfully answered your interviewer’s question about why you left your last job, it’s important to steer the conversation in a positive direction and bring the focus back to the present. The less time you spend talking about your termination, the less of a lasting impression it will make, and rightly so—being fired is an unfortunate occurrence, but it’s not who you are.

Now that you understand how to interview successfully after being fired are you ready to get back into the job search and start interviewing?  If so, take a look at our open positions and see if they might be the perfect job for you. We conduct open interviews daily at all of our locations.  

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12 Signs You’re in a Dead-End Job

12 Signs You’re in a Dead-End Job

You want to make a difference. You want to feel appreciated. You want to be challenged. Most importantly, you want to know your hard work today is building towards a goal.  If you don’t see any of these things on the horizon it might be time to re-evaluate your situation.  Here are 12 signs you’re in a dead-end job:

  1. Your boss won’t give you the time of day.

You can’t get time with the boss to move projects forward.  Your projects seem to get lost in the abyss.  You are being ignored and emails go unanswered.  You’re lucky if you catch your boss in the breakroom making their morning coffee.

  1. Your thoughts and opinions don’t matter.

You share your best ideas and solutions, but they are never implemented. Your voice isn’t heard, and your opinions aren’t valued.

  1. No interest in knowing your goals.

You can see yourself doing amazing things for your current employer, but you aren’t being asked about your professional goals or future plans.

  1. Career plans are ignored.

You are asked about your career goals and plans, but the boss pays no attention to them and doesn’t take you seriously.

  1. Your company hires outside talent.

You have watched on multiple occasions high-level positions open up and instead of promoting from within, the corporate culture is to bring in outside talent.

  1. You get no recognition.

There’s no praise in sight.  No matter what you do, you can’t seem to please.  You could do the impossible and the silence that would follow would be deafening.

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  1. Decision makers practice favoritism.

You see favoritism or bias in management practices.  If you’re not on their good side, you’ll probably be stuck doing what you are doing without any promotion in sight.

  1. Unfair treatment.

You notice your colleagues are getting opportunities you don’t get.

  1. Your skills are not being tapped.

You came into the job with a large skill set but your supervisor doesn’t tap into or go beyond what you’ve been contributing for quite some time.  You may have been passed over for a promotion or your request to take on more challenging projects have been ignored.

  1. You’re not challenged.

You feel unchallenged by your job, your boss, or your co-workers with no avenue to change the projection of things.

  1. You lack motivation and enthusiasm.

You get that Monday morning feeling every morning and you find it hard to get out of bed.  What you used to enjoy doing is no longer enjoyable.  There’s no challenge, no opportunity that excites you at the workplace.

  1. A machine could do your job.

Your role is becoming obsolete, as the skills required are being replaced by technology.

Questions to ask yourself before resigning

If you’re seeing all these signs, it might be time to make a change. But, before you go job hopping, make sure the problem is not with you. Here are a few questions to ask prior to hitting the road:

  • Have I communicated my career goals to my manager?
  • Have I shown that I am willing and able to take on new roles and responsibilities?
  • Does my employer offer training that I am not taking advantage of?
  • Have I looked for ways to expand my current role by identifying unmet needs in the organization?
  • Are there any other roles with my current employer that could help me learn new skills and address new challenges?

What to do when you know it’s time to move on

You’ve pondered the above questions and think it’s probably time to move on from your current job. But before you look for similar work elsewhere there are a couple more questions to ask yourself:

  • If I was offered me a promotion within the company, would I really want the new job?
  • Is there a job somewhere else in the company that excites me?

If your answer is “No!” to both of these questions, you may need to do more than look for a better version of your current job. You may need a career makeover. When choosing a new field or industry, think about where there is consistent and sustained job growth. If you do decide to change careers, you can often improve your odds of making a successful transition by first taking on part-time roles, temporary work, or projects.

If you like the type of work you do but desire a fresh start with a new boss and company, start pursuing one. Job seekers with in-demand skills are in the driver’s seat in today’s employment market. So be proactive and begin the process. There’s no reason to languish in a dead-end job without a plan to improve your situation.

Time to look for a new job? Diverse Staffing can help you find the right opportunity!

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Do You Have the Right Interview Clothes?

We live in a world where first impressions mean a whole lot, no matter how much we wish they didn’t. What you wear to your job interview is actually really important. Many HR reps, managers, and other interviewers pay really close attention to what you wear to your interview.

If you find yourself standing in your closet or in front of a mirror asking “what should I wear to my interview?”, then you should know you aren’t alone. It can be difficult to determine the right clothes for an interview. However, here are some key things to keep in mind when picking out your interview clothes:

Dress for the Job

If you are interviewing for a job as a construction worker, you probably don’t need to wear a full suit. And that works both ways. If you are interviewing for a position in an office, you shouldn’t show up wearing jeans and a t-shirt. No matter the job, make sure your clothes are clean, don’t have holes, and are appropriate.

Wearing Fragrances

On a typical day, you might splash on some aftershave or spritz some perfume on. I mean, who doesn’t like to smell nice? But before you go to an interview, you don’t want to do either of those things. You never know when someone will have an allergy or a sensitive nose, and you certainly don’t want your first impression to be someone to sneezing or getting sick because of your fragrance.

The Key Is In the Details

Are your shoes polished? Does your belt go with your suit? Is your jewelry distracting? Are you wearing matching socks? Are you wearing the right colors?  These are the types of questions to ask yourself while looking in the mirror before your interview. Everything needs to match and not be a distraction. Keep in mind that you want to look professional and like you already belong as an employee.

When In Doubt

If you can’t figure out what you should wear to the interview, then feel free to call the HR department. You don’t want show up to your interview underdressed, so ask what is recommended. If you aren’t brave enough to ask, then overdress slightly because that makes a better first impression than being underdressed.

Do you have any questions about what you should wear to your upcoming interview? Leave your questions in the comments section below!

Leveraging Relationships with Recruiters

If you are an active job seeker, odds are you have recently been contacted by a recruiter. You know the spiel: “Hello, my name is so-and-so. I came across your resume online and was interested to see if you were still looking for a new position?”

It is very natural to put your guard up when you get contacted by a complete stranger about something as important as your job search. I get it. Many candidates want to be in control of their resume. But consider this –if you developed the knowledge required to confidently identify which recruiters were worth utilizing, you could expand your job search and gain valuable contacts that could last for the rest of your career.

Before you jump into another day of job hunting, check out the tips below on how to leverage your recruiter contacts and create new networking opportunities for yourself.

When contacted by a recruiter, ask questions
Initial phone conversations should be a time where you learn as much about them as they learn about you. Find out if they are calling about a specific position or if they have gotten in contact to simply get a better feel for you as a candidate. Make sure to write down the recruiter’s name and contact information, so you can research them later. The more you know about their professional history, the better you can gauge just how much they can help you in your job search.

If you receive unsolicited calls from recruiters, take them. You never know when one phone call could turn into a long-lasting relationship with a legitimately helpful contact. Stay in touch with the recruiters who could line you up with employers in the future. Another great option is to ask friends who have been placed by local recruiters to forward your resume to the person who placed them.

Get to know how recruiters work
In order to effectively utilize recruiters when they reach out to you, it is important to understand the different kinds of recruiters that exist and how they operate.

The two main types of recruiters are contingent and retained. Contingent recruiters are not paid until a candidate they submit is hired for the job. These are the recruiters competing with internal hiring teams, advertising, and direct applicants to fill the opening at hand. Contingent recruiters are likely to work at a faster pace than retained recruiters since their compensation is on the line.

Retained recruiters, on the other hand, are hired to manage the whole hiring process for a client. These recruiters work exclusively with companies to fill their positions, and charge an upfront fee to conduct the entire candidate search. These recruiters are usually able to take more time in finding multiple candidates that meet the needs of the companies for which they are working.

Recruiting firms tend to specialize by industry or function. Understanding this can help you figure out how to form your relationships. Seek out recruiters who specialize in the field you’re in or the field you want to enter.

Position yourself where opportunities are presented
It is imperative that you get out there where you have the chance to meet the right people and hear about the right opportunities. If you don’t have a LinkedIn yet, make one. Creating a LinkedIn profile is the easiest way to increase your visibility with recruiters and hiring managers. Make sure your profile is thorough and always updated, and remember to check your LinkedIn and spam frequently to avoid missing inquiries from people in your network.

Advantages of Choosing a Staffing Firm Over Your Corporate Recruiter

“Why should we utilize your staffing services when we already have a corporate recruiter?”

This is a question we get frequently from potential clients. When comparing corporate recruiters to those who work for staffing firms, neither is superior from a professional standpoint. They all have the ability to get the job done. However, utilizing a staffing firm, utilizing a good staffing firm, can open up your company to stronger candidates, quicker. Here’s why:

External recruiters’ focus is on making placements, not logging activity.

The best external recruiters are going to be working with and providing fewer, but higher quality, candidates because their success depends on sinking the placement. They manage the process from beginning to end and will only send you the best of the best.

Your business will have a brand new, extensive network to utilize.

Experienced staffing firms have developed deep networks of passive candidates that you would not necessarily be able to tap into otherwise. In our competitive industry, third-party recruiters are forced to use creativity when networking and assessing candidate and customer expectations. Staffing firms have an advantage for this reason – they not only have the ability to source top candidates from more areas, but they’ll be able to do it faster than an internal recruiter.

The best candidates want to work with staffing firms.

Hardworking recruiters and their staffing teams establish reputations with the best talent out there, simply by doing their job well. Experienced, passive candidates know they can go to staffing firms for information regarding new opportunities. Corporate recruiters who only work with one company are not going to have that widespread visibility.

They have credibility with hiring teams.

Third-party recruiters are used to building trusting relationships over time with the same hiring managers. They know the most essential questions to ask and how to communicate effectively with companies in order to understand their unique hiring needs. Corporate recruiters on the other hand tend to work with different hiring managers more frequently, and may not have the time required to settle in and build valuable partnerships like staffing firms do.

Using an exceptional recruiting firm that meets the criteria above should be a strategic part of every business’ hiring initiative. When you can find a great staffing resource, trust them and their methods; let them leverage their abilities to deliver their services with processes they’ve perfected.

If you are looking to grow your team and need assistance finding the talent your business needs, give Diverse Staffing a call at (317) 813-8000.

4 Apps to Help You Stop Texting While Driving

Take a second to digest this statistic: The National Safety Council reports that cell phone use while driving leads to 1.6 million crashes and about 330,000 injuries each year. That’s one out of every four car accidents.

Despite the alarming data, the heartbreaking stories, and the launch of multiple national campaigns, Americans are still frequently using their cell phones while behind the wheel. In the back of our minds, we all know that texting and driving don’t mix, but for some reason, not all of us can break this bad habit. Luckily, there are a few apps out there that can be used to help you keep your eyes on the road. If you are one of those people whose will power dissolves upon hearing your phone ding from the console, check out these apps before your drive home today.

Drive First – this is an app from Sprint that automatically locks your phone when you start driving. Don’t worry, it does allow you to pick three apps that will remain accessible, things that are handy on the road such as Google Maps or your music, and to select “VIP” contacts to bypass the block. So don’t worry, you can make sure you don’t miss important calls from your boss or spouse when using this app.

Texting and talking while driving

DriveModeDriveMode is different than most apps out there; instead of disabling your phone, it makes it easier to use. This app replaces your phone’s functions and appearance with  simple-to-use features that make engaging with your phone while driving less dangerous. For example, instead of having to press a small button to take an incoming call, DriveMode makes your entire screen into an answer button so you can tap anywhere to take the call.

Focus – this app actually trains you to not use your phone while you’re on the move. It will tell you to pay attention and give your reminders to remain focused. This app also provides reports of your progress and how the app may be improving the unwanted habit of texting while driving.

TextNoMore – TextNoMore is really cool because it offers incentives for successfully reaching your destination without texting. This service has partnered with retailers to provide different coupons that you can unlock and use.

Take advantage of the technology of today – turns out the device we’re all so distracted by could also help us focus on the road.

 

How to Optimize Your Resume for Job Boards

No matter what field you’re in, the challenge to get one’s resume noticed online is a fierce one. The Internet has made the act of applying for jobs pretty painless but the convenience and accessibility of online apps has created a more competitive arena. With the mass number of resumes flooding in to websites, it’s incredibly easy to get lost in the mix (every week, 427,000 resumes are posted on Monster alone). So it is more important than ever to consciously construct your resume in a way that will make it stand out.

The best way to do this is to incorporate popular terms that employers and recruiters often use in their searches within the content of your resume. Including a few carefully chosen keywords can be the difference between your resume getting you an interview and it disappearing into the abyss of other hopefuls, dying in vain, and never coming across a recruiter’s computer screen. Using keywords on your resume will enable search engines to pull it out of the crowd. Next time you tweak your resume, consider how recruiters and employers actually look for qualified candidates. Like so:

Work History: Examine your past roles then scroll through some job boards to see how employers are listing openings similar to what you have done in the past; it is most effective to use terms companies are using in their ads because they are the words recruiters and employers are most likely to search. When in doubt about what job title to use, utilize a slash to include more than one (Senior Administrative Assistant / Executive Assistant). If you have worked for any well-respected or well-known companies, include the names of those past employers.

Skills: In order to get your resume in front of the most people, do some research on what skills employers are listing in their posts. From the list of common skills you find, choose a couple of the most significant and applicable to use on your resume. And always remember: list the skills most in demand for the job you want next.

Location: Employers will often search for candidates based on the location of the job for a number of reasons. While doing this, recruiters could type in a number of city and state combinations to pull up candidates. For example, a recruiter could look up resumes by typing in “Indianapolis” one day, then search a specific zip code the next- be sure to include as many variations of your location as possible in order to be pulled into their searches.

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Secrets of the Successful: How Influential Business Leaders Choose Their New Hires

With the chaos of the holidays behind us and budgets set for the new year, many employers are looking to build upon their team. Hiring a new employee is exciting but by no means is an easy feat. Bringing on the right person requires a lot of thought, time, and money (the average ROI of a bad hire is -298%. No pressure). Choosing the best candidate and the best fit in some ways never gets easier, so whether you’re a hiring manager for a small start-up or an experienced CEO at an established company, one should always jump at the chance to reflect and improve upon their hiring strategy. Need some inspiration? Here are a few insightful ways in which some of the world’s most famous company leaders pick their winning candidates.

Disney’s Chief Executive Bob Iger is drawn to people who exude optimism- “When you come to work, you’ve got to show enthusiasm and spirit. You can’t let people see you brought down by the experience of failure. I believe in taking big risks creatively. If you fail, don’t do it with mediocrity- do it with something that was truly original, truly a risk.”

David Brown, founder and managing partner at Techstars, relies on making his needs crystal clear from the very start- “Have a great job description. Make sure your candidate meets it. Don’t just rely on cultural fit.”

LinkedIn’s Russell Glass, however, prefers to put culture first- “The right culture fit is easy to train on the right skills, but the wrong culture fit with the right skills will never be successful.”

Thomas Schranz, CEO of Blossom, believes in milking your connections and your team members’ networks. Pursuing the referrals of your colleagues leads to building a group that works well together- “A lot of hugely successful companies got started by friends, fellow buddies from university and previous coworkers. Check for cultural fit. A-teams consist of extraordinary people who work well together.”

Editor-in-Chief of American Vogue Anna Wintour seeks individuals who don’t let intimidation stop them from sharing their ideas and personality- “I look for strong people. I don’t like people who’ll say yes to everything I might bring up. I want people who can argue, and disagree, and have a point of view that’s reflected in the magazine.”

As one might expect for such a trailblazer of a company, Apple CEO Tim Cook says you need to have the passion to change the world if you want to join his team- “You look for people who work for a different reason. People that see things and know that it should be different and they sit and focus on it until they find the answer. People that can’t be told that it’s impossible; they don’t accept it.”

For PepsiCo’s CEO, Indra Nooyi, the importance lies in investing in each candidate’s personal interests and professional goals- “The only way we will hold on to the best and brightest is to grasp them emotionally. No one may feel excluded- it is our best to draw the best out of everyone. That means employees must be able to immerse their whole selves in a work environment in which they can develop their careers, families, and philanthropy, and truly believe they are cared for.”

CASA Toy Drive

12347871_10153365085343613_4344060614469510922_n                                                                                                                                                                                                    This week, the Diverse Staffing teams in Greenwood, Indianapolis & Shelbyville had the privilege of donating gifts to the National Court Appointed Special Advocate Association, a program that provides support to children placed in foster care.

 

Whether it was through shopping or helping wrap presents, we would like to thank  everyone  who gave their time. It is especially rewarding to come together as a company and contribute to such a wonderful cause this time of year.

 

How to Stay Motivated During the Holiday Season

It may be the “most wonderful time of the year,” but the festive months on the tail end of the year unfortunately happen to often see major losses in productivity. With it being so easy to mentally check out as the holidays arrive, how can we enjoy this time of the year while keeping ourselves motivated at work?

  • Be flexible: Embrace the chaos of the holidays. When you are responsive to change and are willing to adapt, you are more capable of successfully juggling end-of-the-year projects as well as the busy social scene.
  • Don’t overcommit: Maintaining a manageable work-life balance is always important, but you’ll find it to be key this time of year. As tempting as it may be, don’t weigh down your calendar with social engagements. RSVP to all those Christmas parties wisely! Over-doing it can lead to a stall in productivity, which can easily lead to unwanted stress and sickness this holiday season.
  • Network: Take advantage of the events and parties you do attend by meeting new people in your industry and broadening your network. If you pick your parties and your conversations just right, you could set yourself up for better business in the coming year.
  • Clean up the clutter: Forget “spring cleaning”- the end of the year is a better time than ever to organize your life. That stack of papers has been in the corner for two months now. Unless it is vital to current or future projects, let the eye sore go. Clutter causes distractions and can make every job seem a little harder when you have to shift and sift every time you’re attempting to locate something. Simplify your life. Your 2016 self will thank you.
  • Get some help: With many industries being short-staffed and/or picking up at the end of the year, teams can easily become overwhelmed and get behind. Don’t be afraid to contact a reputable staffing company to help you find some temporary help that can carry some of your load. If you are an employer in the industrial, call center, IT, or administrative industries who wants to build upon their team this winter, contact us at (317) 813-8000 today.

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