5 Career Coaches/Consultants in 5 Days: Abby Kohut

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Ken Kohut

Hiring a career coach/consultant is a very serious decision, and must be done with great research and thought. In the spirit of helping job seekers, I am presenting five coaches in five days who are all nationally known and widely respected in their fields; each will give their advice on hiring a coach/consultant, job searches, and more.

I met Abby Kohut (AKA "Absolutely Abby") two years ago this week, when one of my networking contacts suggested that we connect, as we shared a similar mission of helping people on job searches--and as she has said, we became fast friends.

Below is her advice on coaches/consultants and a great article on job search approaches for the long-term unemployed.

Abby Kohut (AKA "Absolutely Abby")

Abby's Advice on coaches/consultants

A wise person said that if you continue to do things the same way you have always done them, you'll get the same results. Hire a coach or a consultant that can help you see what you don't see. Ask the questions you don't want to ask. But when you get the answers, TAKE ACTION quickly. Be willing to try the scary, the wacky and the different. Be willing to be pushed and you will jump over all of your competition in one fell swoop!

Are you unemployed or unemployable?

At a quick glance, you might mistake one word for the other – but I'm sure you'll agree that while being "unemployed," you never want to be perceived as "unemployable." Yet I've read a growing number of articles that attach the stigma of being "unemployable" to the currently unemployed.

Dictionary.com defines an "unemployed" person as one "without a paid job but available to work." The same site defines an "unemployable" person as someone who is "not able to get paid employment because of a lack of skills or qualifications."

Over the past year there have been articles flying around the web claiming that there may be a causal relationship between these two labels, that the unemployed are considered to also be unemployable by many companies. Ironically, these articles perpetuate the unemployability itself as they cause what little self-confidence a job seeker might have left after a lengthy job search to fly out the window.

As a recruiter, my goal is to recommend a candidate who is both the best person for the job and a great fit for the company culture. But in order for me to hire you, you have to get past the checkpoints, much like you do when boarding a plane. For each position I hire only a single person and have to turn away hundreds for reasons other than simply being "unemployed."

Case in point - I received an e-mail from an administrative assistant who had given up on searching for a job because "no one would consider her for employment." She was 60 years old and had been unemployed for about two years. I took one look at her resume and cover letter and found grammatical errors galore. Being unemployed had nothing to do with why she was not being called for interviews.
Many candidates with a broad skill set and an exceptional resume find they get stuck at the interview checkpoint. Practice makes perfect – if you go into an interview being negative, wordy, egotistical, dishonest, or are simply just the wrong culture fit, whether you are going to be hired will have little to do with whether you are employed or not.

So what can you do if you fall into the "unemployed" category?
  1. STOP listening to the negative press. It will only make you feel unemployable.
  2. If you hear about companies who won't hire unemployed people, be happy that they didn't hire you, because they probably don't treat their employees well either.
  3. Be sure that your resume and cover letter is the best that it can possibly be – if you have any doubts, ask a career consultant for an analysis.
  4. Practice interviewing with your job search buddy, or if you want to land fast, hire a career consultant to evaluate your soft skills rather than your technical qualifications. Work with this person on eliminating all negative thoughts and words and building your self-confidence back to where it was when you were employed.
  5. Learn the new wants and desires of the 21st century hiring manager. Take control of your life and reinvent yourself for the future!

Absolutely Abby's Advice:
Regardless of why you are unemployed, please don't believe that you are "unemployable." Seek out the resources you need and then put forth the effort needed to overcome each of your challenges. You are an Absolutely fabulous candidate! You just need to believe it and then practice showing the world what you can do.

John's Advice: Abby specializes in helping people get unstuck and reach their full potential. And she does it all in an hour! To schedule a one-on-one session with Abby use coupon code "SJH" "Capture a Recruiter".
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