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Between the Trapezes

Why Keep A "Career Diary"?

July 2008



Welcome to Between the Trapezes! Often the changes in our lives feel precarious as we are suspended between two certainties. But the frightening moment passes as we bravely go on to the next step -- as we must.

Enjoy reading, and feel free to forward this e-zine on to anyone, wherever they are job searching! And if you received this email in error, our apologies -- just unsubscribe using the easy link at the bottom of this page.



Why You Should Keep A Career Diary

You Work for Your Manager First, The Company Second

The Right Words

Why You Should Keep A Career Diary

report2One of the things I strongly urge clients of all levels to do once they land a new position is to keep a career "diary".

A diary or journal is where you keep track of 1) new tasks and new responsibilities you handled well, and 2) what you're learning. In short, it's keeping track of your increasing knowledge and growing list of successes.

Why is it important to keep track of your accomplishments while on the job? The big things you'll remember but there are many other achievements that can get lost. I can't tell you how many clients say, years later, "If only I could remember all the great things I did on that job!" Keeping a log or diary of your achievements is very helpful when it comes time for your review. And while in job search, it is extremely useful when updating your resume.

Whatever method you use -- pen on paper, PDA, your phone or PC -- track these achievements on the date they occur, not at some later time. Trying to remember these juicy tidbits months or years later, especially when under pressure, can be frustrating. So jot them down as they happen and you'll thank yourself later.

You Work for Your Manager First, The Company Second

womanmanIt's many a job seeker who targets a company, lands a job there, then learns two or three weeks later that they work for The Demon Boss. That discovery can erase any joy you had at landing the job: your manager is a constant presence.

So that you can better avoid this kind of nasty surprise, here are a few things you can do while interviewing so that you get to know your future manager better.

1. Ask the manager to describe, for example, how she likes to communicate with her reports. You can ask: What, to her, is "success" -- and failure? And, to what does she attribute her success?

2. Ask to be introduced to others in the department or division, then ask them what they like most about working for this manager. Pay attention to pregnant pauses and "Uh..." versus big smiles. Each will tell you a lot.

3. Use Google and to learn more about the manager's background. Her "coming up" through, say, Oracle, would shape her corporate education far differently than moving through the ranks at Apple.

If the answers align with what you think is important, and what you give value to, then it's likely the manager will be a good one to work for, for you. And if they don't match? Keep looking.

The Right Words

Book cover med

You woke up this morning saying "Oh, no, I don't yet have my copy of The Resume Queen's Job Search Thesaurus and Career Guide?! How can that be?!"

Well, fortunately, that's a problem easily solved.

You can get it here or on, where it's getting wonderful reviews. AND it's also available as a iVersion for your iPod.

By using the Thesaurus and Guide, you'll improve your chances of communicating your value to a prospective employer. In these uncertain times, why not give yourself every advantage?

Thank you for your order!

Tip of the Month


Joanne Meehl

Thought of the Day:

The chief danger in life is that you may take too many precautions.

-- Alfred Adler

Tip of the Month:
Add the link for your LinkedIn profile to your email signature. That way, people can click on it to quickly get to your profile and learn more about you.
We are proud members of:

  • Association of Career Professionals Int'l
  • Career Management Alliance
  • Chapman Private Practice Alliance
  • Business Networking International

Called "The Resume Queen" years ago by a career counselor colleague, Joanne Meehl decided to have fun with the nickname (which we've officially trademarked). But she also takes it seriously by keeping her career management skills on the leading edge, through research and ongoing dialog with hiring managers.

You're now seeing us use "The Job Search Queen", which better reflects the breadth of our services. The trademark is pending. We use both "queen" nicknames in our materials.

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