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Between the Trapezes

Success Stories

August 2008



Welcome to Between the Trapezes! Often the changes in our lives feel precarious as we are in that space between two certainties. But taking that chance is what brings success.

Enjoy reading, and feel free to forward this eNewsletter on. And if you received this email in error, our apologies -- just unsubscribe using the easy link at the bottom of this page.



·  Success Story: A Career Diary, part 2

·  A Happy Ending: Kate's Story

·  Thank You for Your Referrals!

·  The Job Search is All About the Right Communications

Success Story: A Career Diary, part 2

Keyboard Last month, I wrote here about the wisdom of keeping a career "diary". This is on-the-job keeping track of new tasks and new responsibilities you handled well, and what you're learning. Doing so helps you on your current job AND when you prepare to find your next job.

In response to that article, I heard from a reader, Dan Bell, who is doing precisely this on his job, which he's had for a little over six months. His role is to revamp production processes for greater productivity, a new initiative for his company and new for Dan.

How is Dan tracking what he's learning? Dan is using simple journaling software to note processes that he's tried and haven't worked, and of course, what's working. He logs the new methods he's trying, and which ones the people on various teams respond to. He notes what he has to adjust as people learn. He tracks what he's covering in the training for those involved, as well as the training content that differs for each group. He's making note of the problems that have cropped up, and what solutions work. And of course, he's tracking his own role in all of this.

What has this taught Dan? As he reviewed his job diary recently, he realized he is documenting all the new things he's doing and learning -- as well as a possible next job. He actually sees that what he's doing in his work is unique: not only in his current company, but in his industry. He's paving the way. In short, he's going to be far more able to lobby for his next position with his company because he'll have data and successes to point to, when the time comes. He won't be counting on his memory. He'll be more than ready.

Your career diary would be far different than Dan's yet would be just as powerful. Start keeping track of your successes, and you'll be ready for your next search, too.

A Happy Ending: Kate's Story

Joyful woman Kate was a brand-new MBA when she began to work with me on her search. She had some entrepreneurial experience with her family's business, but not a lot in the way of corporate work, even in her internships.

Working with Kate, she decided on a track for Project Manager. Marketing research or business analysis were two target career areas.

She began networking and doing career research meetings, and this led to her sending her resume to a few companies where such meetings helped her uncover openings. Her confidence was building.

A networking contact led Kate to an interview at a priority target company of hers. She had the interview and some phone meetings, and was made an offer. She was delighted, as was I, and now felt able enough to do some negotiating. So she successfully negotiated for tuition reimbursement, a huge concession for this particular company, according to everyone there she'd talked to. For someone who was just beginning her career, it was a coup, and it seemed she was set to start.

It was then that Kate went, I believe, a step too far: emboldened, she asked the hiring manager for more concessions. His reaction: she now seemed, well, greedy, especially for someone with so little experience, so he withdrew the offer. Kate was devastated.

We talked about her options now. I suggested she talk with the hiring manager again, and she did. Although he would not reconsider her, he recognized her potential and suggested she keep her eye open for other managers' openings there, though none materialized during the rest of her search.

Kate forged on. She kept up her resume submissions and networking meetings, and had another offer which she turned down because it didn't fit. She then landed with an investment research firm in a Project Management track, which will propel her toward her ultimate goal. She's getting valuable experience.

In her search, Kate learned her value in the marketplace, and that she probably wasn't a fit for one of her target companies -- initially a disappointment but in the end, good to know.

Despite a few bumps, she landed in the right place for her.

Congratulations, Kate!

Thank You for Your Referrals!

A hearty and grateful thank you goes out to those of you who referred associates, friends, and family to us over this last month or so, or who asked us to send this newsletter to someone who could use it:
Gene Wood, Peg Roberts, Perry Charpentier, Dan Hagebak, Cathy Waldhauser, Tom O'Brien, Robin Johnson, Jim Campbell, Steve Ness, and Tim Olson. Joanne appreciates your trust, and is looking forward to working with your referrals to ignite their job searches!

The Job Search is All About the Right Communications

Book cover med

So much of the search depends on how you communicate your value to a potential employer. Here's a tool that will help you find the right words.

The Resume Queen's Job Search Thesaurus and Career Guide is available here or on, where it's gotten solid positive reviews. AND it's also available as a iVersion for your iPod.

By using the Thesaurus and Guide, you'll improve your chances of strong communications with prospective employers. 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:

There are two ways of meeting difficulties: you alter the difficulties, or you alter yourself to meet them.

-- Phyllis Bottome, novelist

Tip of the Month:
Be sure to have job search business cards separate and apart from those you use for your current job. These cards, with bullets highlighting your leading value factors, along with your contact information, are a useful tool during your search. _________________________

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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Are you trying to fix the wrong problem? -- Maybe you think your resume isn't working but could it really be that there just aren't many jobs in your field right now? Or maybe the companies just aren't a good fit? Find out what's wrong, especially if you're stuck, stalled, and confused, during a Quick Consult with the Queen. This 1-2 hour session gives you concrete steps to follow for getting unstuck, for a fee of $150. And if you choose to work with Joanne on these steps, that fee is applicable to your project.

Joanne's Blog: The Heart of the Matter


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Joanne Meehl Career Services | 13911 Ridgedale Drive, Suite 490 | Minnetonka | MN | 55305