Tag Archives: interview

Dressing for that Interview

Many people in the industrial sector haven’t a clue how to dress for a job interview.  And when one does….it totally excites the Staffing Expert and puts the candidate to the top of the list when all else is equal.

But what works in making a great impression and why does it do this?  After all, work is work.  Who cares?

First of all, that staffing expert is looking for candidates that not only has the required skills needed but will also knock the socks off their client employer when met! Skills, although a major component of a job search only represent what you can do, it does not speak of who you are and how well you will fit into their culture.

Let’s talk about sprucing up for that interview. The how’s and why’s of dressing for a job is simple.  It’s all about respect; respect for yourself, respect for the person that’s interviewing you and respect for the company that hires you. It shows you respect the opportunity given you by the Staffing Expert. Dressing for the interview shows that you deliberately wanted to make a great impression on that Staffing Expert. They will then think if you did it for them, you would also do it for their client if given an opportunity to meet them. You are telling that Staffing Expert by your appearance not to worry, you will make a great impression and be a great representative of their firm.

More importantly it shows that you have respect for your self. If you’re that conscientious about your appearance it only stands to reason that you will have the same attitude toward your work and job duties. Proper dress for an interview speaks of who you are as a person.

Coming in for an interview in shorts and flip flops gives the impression that you really don’t care what you do or how you do it. Is that what you want them to think? But on the flip side of the coin, coming in for an interview in crisp clean pants and a clean unwrinkled shirt says that you are a person who knows your self worth. You deserve that face time. You deserve that opportunity to meet the employer.

No one is saying you need to wear expensive clothes or recommends purchasing a whole new wardrobe. What I’m saying is clean and unwrinkled makes a good impression.  Shorts and cut offs do not. Neither does flip flops, tank tops, short shorts and torn jeans (this isn’t the Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants!).

To take pride in your work you must first take pride in yourself.  Once you demonstrate that, that job will be all yours!

Don’t Bring Your Pals to the Interview!

No, a job interview is not an opportunity to have a group outing!  Seriously?   Are you kidding me?   How serious are you about getting a job or is this just something to do to fill your day before your nail appointment with your girlfriends?  Or were all of you thinking about going shopping and “by-the-way I have to stop and get interviewed first”?

While sitting at my desk today this woman left the lobby and strolled to the back of our offices.   As she walked past my desk (about forty feet beyond the lobby, clearly in the employees only “office” space area) I finally noticed the woman, strolling by in a leisurely fashion just looking and wandering about.   I spoke up, “good morning, may I help you?”    “Where’s the restroom?” she barked.    “The other direction, down that little hall” as I pointed in the direction she needed to go.  She then meandered in that direction.   After about five minutes, doesn’t she come strolling around again past my desk?

Now mind you, picture this….front door, very large gorgeous lobby with a receptionist. Around the corner from the reception area are clearly marked restroom signs. But beyond this and separated by a half wall and very large plants there is this entire opened working space with about thirty or so desks filled with staff who were more than likely on their phones.  And she’s wandering amongst them!

“How can I help you this time?” I said again as she walks past my desk.  “Where the lobby?”     “The OTHER direction!”

She and another woman were here with their friend who had the appointment with a job counselor.    Do you think the first thing her counselor will tell her is to leave friends and family outside?  If not they should!

Are people that unaware of appropriate professional behavior?  Is this something that needs to be taught?  Do people not know of common courtesy as a guest in another’s work space?  An uninvited visitor who takes it upon themselves to wander about in a business is equivalent to a guest in your home going thru your closets and drawers.  It simply is NOT DONE!

Besides not bringing your pals with you into the interview, and don’t even get me started on the spouses who insist upon being part of the interviewing process and takes it upon themselves to answer all of the questions for the potential candidate, there are very basic protocols that must be adhered to at your time of visit.  Be respectful of someone else’s space.  It’s theirs.  You are not free to touch, pick up, examine, or wander in that space. If you must bring your children with you to the interview (and it is not recommended to do so but things do happen we understand) you’d better make sure your children follow the same respectful rules.  Bring something for them to do while you wait as schedules can easily shift and change without anyones control.

I suppose I will eventually blog on the spouse speaking for you issue some other time but for the time being let me just say – bad idea!   VERY BAD idea!

The woman who brought her girlfriends with her today I feel already began on the wrong foot.  Personally I wonder how serious she was about finding a good, well paying job opportunity as this interview appeared from the behavior of her friend to be just a girl’s day out! I hope I’m wrong about that!

The Question of MONEY $ in an Interview

Current, previous and desired. What are/were you making, and (of course) What Do You Want?

It comes up in an online application (leave it blank), a phone screen, first interview and on the part of the pre-screener (recruiter) in their first conversation with you, and after all interviewing is done.

Why? MOST of the time the company wants to assure that your needs and their needs are in the same ballpark. No one in a company wants to take time to interview people who are off the mark, from a “match” or money perspective. No one wants to be used for “informational interviewing” purposes…on either side.

So what are you to do?

There are as many answers to this question as there are former-HR interviewers in the world.

Here are some simple answers:

Current and/or previous salary?:

1)     Be HONEST, about previous or current income. If your previous or current income is NOT of major consequence to be matched (there are people), then state that along with your answer. But state why (besides the fact that you are desperate for a job). Be sure that your explanation holds water (logical) and is not indicative of wanting to do less of a job or give less of an effort.

2)     Think it through: If your finances and living situation allow you to trade an interesting job for money, and that is your goal, make sure the person you are dealing with knows that and why. Nothing is worse than a hiring authority thinking that you will accept $X now, but will be looking to better-deal that one minute after being employed.

3)     If you KNOW you were paid MORE (or are) than the company you are interviewing with pays, then say so. Having lost your job does NOT mean that you will have to take a massive pay cut to be re-employed…unless you worked at a unique company or in an over-paid job (GM, BP, Goldman). There are MANY companies that pay WAY ABOVE an average.

4)     “Bonuses” were just that: “Extra Money” not a part of your salary. Live with that. They were for doing (hopefully) more than what was expected in the job you were in. In the last several years “Bonuses” were that you were remaining employed, unless you were in an unusual company.

Desired Salary:

Interviewer: “So, what (kind of) salary or money are you looking for?”

Answer:  “Mr. Jones: I have taken a thorough look at the function and the goals you wish me to perform and accomplish and I have no doubt that I will exceed those goals (restate the position’s goals/ department goals) based upon my experiences and abilities (delve into EXACTLY what you have accomplished in the past, and how that translates to HOW you will attack and exceed goals/ expectations for THIS employer). Therefore, I am sure that I can make ABC Company very happy. I do NOT know what salary you have in mind for a person like myself, but I believe you and ABC Company will be more than fair, so if you are ready to make an offer, I am certain we will have no problems.”

The idea is to get them to tip their hat first. But if they won’t or they hesitate, try this next:

“If you are not yet at the stage of making your best offer first (and last), then what is it about my background and expertise that I can clarify for you?”

If the hot potato still comes back to you, and you have the backbone to try one more parry, use this:

“I have been very pleased with our relationship to date Mr. Jones: What would you advise me to do?”

Yes, the person could in fact come back with :”I’d advise you to give me a figure that I can work with”.

Sweat a little, and respond with a reasonable ballpark set of numbers.

Not all repartee will end with you winning. The above has been designed and used with success at an executive level AND at a lower-white collar level, where the salary (or wage) has NOT been pre-determined.

How to deal very effectively with the question of salary is almost like playing golf: what club (response) you should use depends upon many factors that can change rather constantly. Each circumstance will be different. There is one constant however: If you have not positioned yourself to show and prove your VALUE (ability to hit company goals), the ability to command top money is lost, or even an offer.

(772 words. 1 minute 47 seconds)

Respectfully submitted:

Robert Schepens

The Handshake

You can NEVER recreate a first impression.  Never! And when that ever elusive first interview comes your way you better be ready to make the best impression possible.

Needless to say, your first impression (leaving out your appearance which will be discussed in a later blog) begins with a smile, eye contact and then the handshake.  That handshake is more important than you can possibly imagine for it speaks volumes about you.  It reveals who you are, who you are capable of becoming and speaks to your level of confidence. Make no mistake about it, without a proper handshake you may as well kiss that job goodbye.

In business (and securing a job is your business) a proper handshake is mandatory whether you have personal space issues or not.  It’s expected.  It’s more than simple courtesy; it’s mandatory whether you are a man or a woman.  Business protocol requires you to extend a hand of greeting to your hiring authority, potential supervisor, to new clients or customers and to everyone in a group that you are introduced to in a business situation. Developing a good, firm, solid handshake is in essence required of you as it could very well be your foot in or out the door.

As a recruiter, I’ve had my share of bad handshakes.  Here are a few and what I was thinking at the time.

There is the dead fish hand shake when you are shaking their hand but it feels like their hand has gone limp.  A dead fish handshake is interpreted as “you didn’t really want to shake my hand did you? Am I boring you? Ok, then we’ll get this over with right quick so you can be on your way. Bye Bye now!”

And then there is the “omg can you squeeze any harder, it’s hurting me” hand shake where the other persons hold on you feels like all your fingers are being squeezed together as in “I’m much stronger, bigger, better than you, want to see, huh? huh?huh?”

Please, let’s forget the “ladies” handshake where they only extend their fingertips. That is so passé, it’s not 1940.  It’s the 21st Century get with it honey! Who do you think you are anyway?

How about the “I’ll jack that car up for you” handshake where your whole arm from the shoulder down is in motion from the force of the others pumping actions “you must be really, really happy to see me, how desperate are you anyway?”.

And then there is the across the body from left to right handshake “what in heavens name are you doing to my arm and hand? Nothing you have to say from now on is even something I’d like to hear”?

A handshake is like a dance between two people. All you have to do for a good professional handshake is to simply match their step.   With your hand extended and thumb up you grasp their right hand matching your thumb web to theirs making a perfect fit of the hands.  You close your fingers around their hand and try to match the strength of their grasp – not too hard, not too soft but firm.  It’s a grasp not a squeeze. You’re holding their hand with yours. The actual shake is a gentle up and down if they don’t take the lead first.  And after one or two motions you gently release your grip never loosing eye contact.

Be the first to reach out and offer your hand for you are there by their invitation. Be courteous. The handshake is a sign of respect after all. After the interview, extend your hand again to thank them for seeing you. With a solid professional handshake, you might be able to demonstrate that you indeed are the right candidate for that job.

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Why You Are Not Getting Hired

And why your career is going nowhere.

You are not being “Fully Present”.

Is there any doubt in your mind that the little kitty in the picture is TOTALLY focused on the task at hand?  What do you think the odds are that the task will be accomplished?

Buddha taught to a man asking this question: “What are the teachings of you and your disciples”? He answered: ”We walk, sit and eat. The man who asked the questioned was confused: “But so do I”, he said. The Buddha answered him: “Yes, but when we walk, we know that we walk, and when we sit we know that we sit, and when we eat we know that we eat”
This is to be fully present – the concept of mindfulness. (Quotes and text from “Being In Mindfulness.com”)

Mindfulness is the art of living right in the center between future and past – in the present. It is today. It is you, it is the other person, it is focus. It is paying attention to and showing 100% interest in the other person, the task at hand, the job for which you are being paid. It is NOW and HERE.

It is when body and mind are synchronized. It is when you are giving 100% attention. It is the caller on the other end of the phone. It is solving THEIR problem, not thinking about yours. It is the customer’s experience, not yours, that is at the top of the list.

Being “fully present” is focusing on work when you are working, focusing on another person when they are speaking, and focusing on your relaxation when it is time to do so.

If you are operating a table saw, would you be watching a movie at the same time? Hopefully not. The consequences of not being focused on your actions could be devastating and irreversible.

When you are working, can you be paying attention to other things including thoughts about non-work activities? We do. All the time. The consequences can be far away. The payoffs to focus may be only incremental in the short run, so what the heck? The downside to all that is the accumulation of daily deficits mount quickly, and because you are NOT paying full attention to that, it can be lost.

When we are hired to do a job, we are hired with the hopes that we will spend 100% of our time on the job, focused on the job, paying attention to detail, thinking, feeling, and giving 100% of our previous experiences to the tasks at hand, and to the future. We are given goals in the hopes that we will in fact do everything in our power to hit and exceed those goals. How can we do that when our attention is elsewhere? How can we do that when we are thinking about something other than the task at hand?

The same applies to an interview: Many people do NOT focus on the task at hand: convincing the other person YOU have the skills to solve their problems. Too many times, the interviewee goes “through the motions”, the result being that the interviewer wonders WHERE the person actually was for the last hour. Your result is that you don’t get hired.

From Mindfullness.com: “Mindfulness is about focusing our thinking to the actions that we do. We have to plan ahead and take responsibility for our own future. But what happens if this becomes our constant state of living? Then we are living in the thoughts and not in our present actions.

Your career is, just as an interview, a sum of your actions, not your intentions. If you are NOT fully present in your career or your interview, the sum of those actions will not be enough to get you what you want or need. They may no longer be enough to get you by, not in today’s competitive world.

Be fully present and focused on what you are doing. Do it well, to the absolute best of your abilities. The rewards will be deep, predictable and fulfilling.

Have you ever met a person whom when talking to you, you are absolutely convinced that you are THE ONLY person in the room? Be THAT person in everything you do.

Respectfully submitted.

Robert Schepens

Before You Interview, Job Seeker (The Two Minute Advisor)

As an experienced HR Professional, Recruiter, Entrepreneur (the BIGGEST maker of mistakes) and Advisor to corporations large and small, I have seen that these bits of advice can save you huge headaches in this critical process.

Most of us get “rusty” not interviewing, or not meeting in an important one-on-one, when we have not done this in just a couple of weeks, or even days. When one is unemployed, our meeting skills can get downright horrible. “Meetings” are not what you have at Starbucks with another unemployed person. Those are “commiseration sessions”.

Here is some practical, usable advice to get the gears going: (1 minute 33 seconds to read. 522 words.)

1)     Understand that the person you are meeting with has a bio-clock and awareness (the “outdoor animal instinct” if you will) that you may have lost. You are NOT on the same wavelength. They are vibrating at higher speed and you are trying to climb through the gears. Once you understand this, you will be able to make adjustments that will work. Go visit someone you know in an office environment. Get dressed appropriately for this. Get your body metronome and vibrations moving. Get up for the game (Practice). Rehearse. Get used to it, and don’t relax. Remember the energy level you had at work. Regain it.

2)     Instead of simply getting your resume “facts” together, spend MORE time reviewing and taking notes on your career achievements and accomplishments. MOST people can recall and recite the basics of their career path. What astute employers are looking for and what smart candidates are preparing is a list (mental for the interview, physical for practice) of the things they have actually accomplished as results of their efforts, not simply the duties they performed. Review and prepare for explaining the results, and how you achieved them. This is what will separate the winners from the bridesmaids. Review my previous, archived article on “No Really, The Interview isn’t about you”. It is about achieving the interviewer’s goals, not yours.

3)     Prepare your battle gear (Wardrobe). It does not matter if you are interviewing with the headhunter or the hiring authority, dress for success. If you downplay the importance of the headhunter you may be ignoring that he/she is the one who recommends you to their client. That relationship can be very close. Diss the headhunter or dress like it is a meeting with an old friend, and you are toast. Prepare and check your wardrobe a day or two before the meeting. Clean, press, shine. Choose carefully. Get backups ready, just in case the coffee finds your shirt or blouse. Shoes shined. Blue collar? SHAVE, clean, press. Khakis are the right choice. Leave the body jewelry in the drawer.

4)     Research the location. Get a Google map. Leave early. Arrive early. Drive around the block if you have to. If you are late, you are toast. If you have to hurry, you will sweat, be nervous and essentially blow your chances.

We interview over 20,000 people per year. Only 2-5% do this right…before they see us. It all may sound pretty fundamental. It is. It works. There. Value in less than 2 minutes.

Robert Schepens, Certified Personnel Consultant, President

and Employment Expert

Before You Hire (The Two Minute Advisor)

Before You Hire

As an experienced HR Professional, Recruiter, Entrepreneur (the BIGGEST maker of mistakes) and Advisor to corporations large and small, I have seen that these bits of advice can save you huge headaches in this critical process:

1)     Understand the actual goals of ANY position you want to fill. Do NOT simply rewrite the job description. Answer this question: At the end of (one year), what tangible results do you want this function to have achieved? MOST (90+%) do NOT do this.

2)     The GOALS: Are they realistic? Too easy? Check the reality of the goals, and do they coincide with other functions around this position. Do they coincide with corporate goals? Do they coincide with the Corporate PURPOSE?

3)     Define the Skills, Talents, Abilities and Attitudes that would allow a person to accomplish the goals. Do this by analyzing the successful people who have achieved in this function before, or around this function.

4)     THEN….define the experiences (duties, functions) that a person could have that would support having the skills, talents and abilities. TOO OFTEN, hiring authorities say “Someone who has done this job at a competitor before”. BIG mistake. BIG. What you will wind up with is someone else’s headache or someone who can only do what they have done before, for more money. Yes, one can certainly justify the “Must Have” of certain experiences/ skills that relate to direct experience. But the smart organizations go beyond and to the side of that thinking. Risking being inappropriate, the “Profile” you are looking for, needs to contain not only requirements for today, but for the future.

5)     Define WHY a person with those skills, talents and abilities will want to work at your company. What is in it for them? Too often an inexperienced HR person has no idea, other than the corporate line “We are a good place to work”. In this job? Future? If YOU want someone to perform, you need to know what will turn THAT person on. Not anyone. THAT person you want to hire.

6)     Everyone on the same page? All supervisors? Direct managers? Ultimate Hire Authority? If not, start over. DO NOT start this process without discussions and agreements.

7)     $. Quit being cheap. Ask a pro. Don’t guess. But know what you can afford.

8)     Align your immersion/onboarding process to help meet the goals of the function/ person being hired. If you don’t know what that means or how critical this is, call me. Or wait for my next article.

It is critical that you think and prepare before getting started, no matter how experienced you are.

1 minute 38 seconds.(spoken or read) 435 words.

The Two Minute Advisor offers exceptional insight you can put to use in your business or career immediately…in manageable sound bites. I am an experienced employment and business development professional, not an unemployed observer/commentator.

Robert Schepens

NO CELL PHONES for Phone Interviews!!!

NO CELL PHONES FOR INTERVIEWS!!

If you want to make sure you conduct a poor phone interview with a recruiter or hiring authority, use your cell phone.

Yes, I’m an old guy. I was around when phones were the “finger in the dial” kind. It made texting very difficult. I have a cool iPhone now, and use it for everything, except important business calls. Again, EXCEPT for important business calls where I have no choice. I try NOT to use it in the car. I value my life (and yours) too much.

There are positives to be said about having a good old heavy hunk of plastic in your hand that is attached to a wire and then attached to millions of miles of copper:

1)     The call is CLEAR. Let me repeat that: CLEAR. No zaps and frizzles and pops. Especially when you or the caller are trying to make logical points about a job or your background. Both of you can in fact, hear every word uttered (99.999% of the time). There are no misunderstandings about words that could cause YOU to lose a job offer. The WORST thing that can happen is that the call is dropped. And that can happen even if you are stationary.

2)     You MAY think it cool to interview in your car, or bathroom or at a club. Even the mall. Simply put: It isn’t cool at all. The other person knows where you are by the sounds behind you. A land line typically doesn’t have those sounds in the background. Wonder why you keep getting axed for jobs or interviews? Review where you have been and what phone you were using on phone interviews.

3)     The Land Line will let you HEAR EACH OTHER as though both of you are in the same room. CLEAR connections do that. You won’t sound like you are in an NASA wind tunnel, or in Russia.

4)     The other caller does not need to hear your Burger Flopper Drive Thru order. Especially if you just ordered a triple honker with extra sauce and told the girl to “Giant Size that HOG, BABY!!!”

5)     The big piece of plastic in your hand has a unique physical quality: It lets your voice RESONATE: It actually sounds like you. BIG, REAL and alive. Those little, breakable, tinny, cheap-ass or free Chinese-made whimp-phones the kids use will make you sound like a “mini-you”. Not real memorable when you are trying to make a “great first impression” (kind of like a resume with 20 spelling errors). Again: FIRST IMPRESSION IS IMPORTANT.

6) A land line forces you to sit down and focus on what you are doing (Interview, communicate). You can have a resume at hand, take notes and conduct a focused conversation. And guess what: you will SOUND LIKE YOU ARE A SERIOUS JOB SEEKER.

7)     You typically cannot walk far with a land line in your hand. Especially into the next room where your sister is playing this week’s hottest poof-song at volume number 12. Do you think the caller can’t hear you huffing and puffing as you walk up the narrow stairs from your parent’s basement for a Miller Light?

8)     When using a land line you don’t have to say, “Oh sure I can interview and shop at the same time, dude”, then turn to your partner and say “rad jeans dude!”

Here’s the down-low on phone interviews:

1)     Set up a work-space that is quiet, private and large enough to have ALL materials you will need for the interview. Tell your roommates, family, and friends to simply leave your space/ area/ you alone. A baby crying in the background will help you lose the job, regardless of what you think. Yes Mom, the 50 year old guy at the other end of the phone thinks that you should be professional.

2)     Have your resume, the RESEARCH you have done on the company you are interviewing with and accompanying notes with highlights, the ad copy if applicable, plus a blank pad of paper, two pens and a GLASS OF WATER…handy and reachable.

3)     The research: all information on the company, the person(s) you will be interviewing with, any info about products/ services, news releases, linkedin or social media profiles, and any other information you can find that would be applicable to the position for which you will be interviewing.

4)     Two Pens. One could run out of ink. Pencils lose lead or break.

5)     Water: Coffee will dry your throat out. The caller can also hear you take a big slug on that mug. Bottled water: The plastic will make a sound and when you take a swig, you will hear a gurgle. A Glass of water or even two will sustain you nicely.

6)     Put your phone on forward if YOU are to call the interviewer. That way you won’t get annoying call interruptions. Forward to your cell phone that is on mute and in another room. If they are calling you, then learn to make a brief excuse for a call coming in, NEVER put the interviewer on hold. If your family typically calls you, tell them the sacred time of the interview.

7)     Have someone else watch the dog. Fido will probably go crazy for that squirrel outside or have to go out, right at the time you need to be focused.

8)     Music: light uplifting mood music in the background ONLY. Light. JayZee rapping at level 7 in the background may be your good luck theme music. It doesn’t turn HR on, at all. Not in an interview.

9)     Prepare like an athlete. Get your body and voice limber, and your MIND. Make sure you challenge yourself mentally and verbally before the interview. Call someone to get your voice limber. Have play interviewer with you. (I am NOT joking). Run through tough questions (get a book on this. Every former HR Generalist of Corporate Manager has written a book on something Interview related. Me too). PRACTICE.

10)  Remember, this phone interview is CRITICAL. Blow it, and you don’t get an in-person meet..

11)  DON’T EAT HEAVY FOOD 1-2 hours before. That will put you to sleep. And even though you might think that you sound better after a small cocktail, you actually sound tipsy you idiot.

12)  Relax, but just enough to keep your edge. Easy for me to say, I talk for a living. Find your “competitive edge”. Don’t slump on a couch and don’t let your posture squeeze your stomach or lungs area. That is where the air comes from. Sit up straight. Breathe. But not so much you pass out.

What do you do if you DON’T have a land-line, or have to exit work and pretend to be smokin’ outside to interview: Make sure the other person is aware of your limitations, and ask if that is okay, or reschedule the interview.

For now, this list is long enough for you to get the basics. We’ll publish the Phone Interview Strategy next, and the actual pre-dive checklist.

Remember, no freakin’ cell phone. No dog, no baby and NO DRIVING WHILE INTERVIEWING.

Respectfully Submitted:

Robert Schepens

Employment Expert

Wierdest Job Seeker Stunts

Weirdest Job Seeker Stunts

What would you do to get your dream job? Bribe the employer with food or gifts? Hit on the hiring manager? Become a stalker?

Job seekers will do almost anything to stand out among the competition. There is no length a candidate won’t go to and no line someone won’t cross in order to get a job.

Hiring managers nationwide shared the most unconventional methods job seekers used to grab their attention in CareerBuilder.com’s latest survey “How to Get in the Front Door.”

While some candidates’ efforts were impressive – like giving Power Point presentations, distributing portfolios on CD and working for a day to demonstrate talents – others’ were complete turn-offs.

One candidate called incessantly for weeks before and after the position was filled. Another clueless candidate asked for another interview after being told that the job was filled. One job seeker brought coffee for the entire office, while another asked the interviewer out to dinner.

If you think that’s weird, here are some of the most bizarre things job seekers did to get noticed:

  • Wore a tuxedo.
  • Used a celebrity official fan site as one of their portfolio accomplishments.
  • Brought a baby gift to the interviewer who was pregnant.
  • Sat next to the hiring manager in a church pew.
  • Left Yankee tickets for the interviewer.
  • Sent a nude photo of himself to the hiring manager.
  • Tried to do a stand-up comedy routine.
  • Waited for the hiring manager at his car.
  • Came dressed as a cat.
  • Said they “smiled on command.”Multiple people are vying for the same open positions in most situations. Trying something out of the ordinary to market your skills and accomplishments can give you an edge over other applicants. The key to executing effectively and making yourself memorable for the right reasons is coupling creativity with professionalism and persistence.Rosemary Haefner is CareerBuilder.com’s Vice President of Human Resources and Senior Career Adviser. She is an expert in recruitment trends and tactics, job seeker behavior, workplace issues, employee attitudes and HR initiatives.