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The “Rules” to Working with Recruiters: Part 2

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Reading a BookWelcome back everyone. If you were a reader earlier this week, you’ll remember the topic of discussion is on the rules for working with recruiters written in the article 10 Rules For Working With Recruiters And Search Firms. If you missed out on the first part of the discussion you can find it here: The “Rules” to Working with Recruiters: Part 1

Let’s pick up where we left off…

Rule 6: Play the field. Sure, I agree that the more people you are networking with you may have a higher chance of landing your next gig. My advice to you if you want to “play the field,” you should know how to play each position if you want to win the game. Meaning if you don’t commit yourself to every relationship or “position,” you may be sacrificing quality for quantity. This isn’t something you want to shoot yourself in the foot over; your career is in the balance.

**In regards to the comment in the article about not signing exclusivity agreements, the author may not realize the process some hiring companies require. When I worked with T-Mobile and Verizon, they required that if a recruiting company submitted a candidate, they must obtain an exclusivity agreement between the candidate and the firm. The point of this was so that T-Mobile or Verizon would not receive the same candidate submitted multiple times by different agencies. I see nothing wrong with candidates agreeing to this. Perhaps the author of this article was referring to non-competes. I have seen many agreements that prohibit someone from leaving one staffing company to work for another agency in the same role with the same client. I can see why this would be unfair to a job seeker and I also see why this is frustrating to a recruiting company but we will save this discussion for a separate blog.

 

Rule 7: Maintain control. Control is important in this kind of relationship. I think you should always give your approval before a recruiter sends your information/resume out to anyone. We have a few competitors who won’t tell candidates where they are sending your resume until an interview is requested. Talk about bizarre. As a job seeker, how are you supposed to know if an organization is aligned with your values if you don’t even know who they are? Maybe this is a company you interviewed with two years ago and you decided it wasn’t a fit. The concept of sending a resume to a client without consulting a candidate is a practice we would not recommend.

Rule 8: Retain editorial control. You should always know what your resume says before it goes out to a potential employer, so I’d agree (for the most part) with this rule. The only comment I would add is that you should consult with a recruiter to get advice on any modifications for your resume. Often times, recruiters will help tailor your resume to that particular position. It’s not unheard of that some HR teams or hiring managers want to see specific key words, quotas, or specific project examples. It’s part of a recruiters offerings to help you make these adjustments but

Rule 9: Handle salary negotiations yourself. If you are working with a recruiter there is a good chance you won’t be handling the negotiations alone, and this should be seen as a positive. With permanent placements, it’s in the best interest of the recruiting company to get you a competitive offer. Prior to getting to the offer stage the recruiter should have a detailed understanding of your earnings over the last 5-10 years, and should know what you are looking for to make a move. Your initial salary requests may change after an interview, and may also depend on other factors such as benefits, paid time off, flexibility, or bonuses. It’s your responsibility to communicate your questions to the recruiter and it’s the recruiter’s job to make sure these are answered and addressed with hiring managers. Many companies prefer that recruiters have these conversations to eliminate back and forth negotiations and make the process go faster. Companies trust that we have built a relationship with the candidate and therefore there may be more trust. There are times when companies will want to do the negotiations 1-1, which is totally fine too, it just depends on the organization. Regardless, as a job seeker, I wouldn’t take the approach that you always have to do the negotiations without the help of a recruiter. Trust your recruiter’s recommendations since they know the client best. In contract positions you would not be negotiating directly with the client because they are paying the recruiting company an hourly rate for your services, and the recruiting company is then paying you a different rate. You will most likely put both parties in an uncomfortable situation, including yourself.

Rule 10: Don’t rely entirely on recruiters. I can’t disagree here. It’s absolutely up to the individual to put time and effort into their job search. In this section of the article, there is a quote that says, “95 percent of their search time and effort should be in networking, and the other 5 percent should be in everything else, into which recruiters fall.” It would be interesting to hear how they break this down, but somehow I think their process wouldn’t be the best option for a candidate.

It’s important to note that these aren’t the only 10 rules to working with recruiters, nor does it mean you should follow these 10 as if they’re the gospel truth. Remember, recruiters are here to help you – not the other way around. At eQ we’re passionate about doing what’s right for the candidate. I promise you’re not a resume on a desk, and you’re not a means to a sales goal. We’re not your average recruiters.

 

As Talent Acquisition Manager, Jessica Drew focuses on finding the right candidates to fit our clients’ needs. She works with our clients to understand the exact skills and attributes that would fit with the cultural climate and their environment.

Posted in Hiring Best Practices, Recruiting, Talent, Talent Acquisition | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

The “Rules” to Working with Recruiters: Part 1

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Thick Book on Coffee TableI recently came across an article on cio.com called 10 Rules For Working With Recruiters And Search Firms. The general tone of the article makes me believe that the author had a negative experience working with a recruiter or is only looking through the lenses of a job seeker. I don’t disagree with everything in the article but for those of us in the industry who really believe we do things differently, we would like our voices to be heard in response to these “rules.”

The opening paragraph the article states, “Firms work for employers, not for you – and they are merely channels through which you may secure an employment opportunity.” Well, that’s not what we do. At entreQuest, we don’t work for anyone other than our team and the people we are impacting. This includes both job seekers and clients. We value our partnerships with clients and candidates because without one or the other we wouldn’t be able to help anyone grow, and helping you Grow Regardless is our mission. Yes, we are a channel for helping you in your search, and trust me that is not the only value we serve up. We aim to do more than help people “secure employment.” The goal is to put someone in a role where they can grow personally and professionally. Today I’ll cover the first five rules discussed in the article, and will finish up the last five rules on Thursday. Hopefully throughout this 2-part blog series, you will see the value companies like ours can bring to the process.

But first, let’s look at the rules outlined in the article:

1. Be selective
2. Be honest
3. Never pay for anything
4. Confirm the job is right for you
5. Demand respect and communication
6. Play the field
7. Maintain control
8. Retain editorial control
9. Handle salary negotiations yourself
10. Don’t rely entirely on recruiters

 

Rule 1: Be selective. I totally agree with this. Job seekers need to do their homework on companies before they trust them with their resume and personal information. There are some organizations that may send your information to companies without you knowing. Assuming your search is confidential could be a mistake. As a job seeker you may be wondering how you can do some research before working with a Recruiter. Here are a few pieces of advice:

• Does the recruiter have recommendations on their LinkedIn profile and from whom? Are they clients, candidates, peers, managers or a combination of both?

• Does Glassdoor have any reviews on the interview process with that company?

• Look for mutual connections on LinkedIn and ask your connections for their input or experience working with that person.

• Send them a message on LinkedIn or by email and see how quick they are to respond.

Rule 2: Be honest. Of course I’m not going to disagree about being honest. Where I disagree is the comment about holding back some of the details with internal/corporate recruiters. Why waste everyone’s time? If you aren’t disclosing everything that’s important to you in regards to compensation and geographical preferences, aren’t you setting yourself up for possible disappointment at the offer stage? Why not tell the HR team what salary you need to make a move and what your expectations are for year two and so forth? Maybe what the author meant was that HR is often given strict guidelines on salaries and the concern is if you overprice yourself, you are automatically taken out of the process. Yes, I’ve seen this happen, but if a hiring manager really likes someone, they can fight to have the salary adjusted. I’ve seen this happen too. So, I can understand why the advice may be to hold back. My suggestion is to let HR know where you are financially and where you need and want to be, but before committing to a salary you would like to learn more about the role. You probably don’t want to work for a company who is going to take you out of the running if you are one of the best candidates they have spoken to simply because of a $10k discrepancy. That’s not a place you want to be.

Rule 3: Never pay for anything. I wouldn’t advise someone to pay a fee to a recruiter for helping them find a job either, but there are certain services that might merit a fee. Most recruiters are happy to help make changes to a resume, but if you are expecting a recruiter to write this from scratch, depending on your level of experience, this could take hours. Web portfolios that require a developer are starting to trend, especially for positions in the c-suite. This may be an investment well spent if you are standing out in a crowd of hundreds of applicants.

Rule 4: Confirm the job is right for you. If you get blindsided on your first day with unexpected job responsibilities, I’d say the recruiter is likely the last person you should blame. The recruiter should prepare you for the interview and coach you on what to ask to understand expectations, but ultimately it is your responsibility to uncover the depth of your role during the interview. If you leave an interview unclear, ask for a follow-up conversation. Even if you took all of these steps and you still get blindsided, the recruiter has no control over this. It’s up to you to have a conversation with the leadership to get clear on uncertainties.

Rule 5: Demand respect and communication. Demanding rarely gets you what you want; so right form the beginning, I didn’t love this rule. Respect, communication and trust should be expected of any professional. If you have to demand communication from anyone, my guess is that it isn’t a healthy or equal relationship. If a recruiter isn’t getting back to you, I say cut ties and I’d say the same to a recruiter who doesn’t receive communication from a potential candidate.

 

That covers the first five rules listed in 10 Rules For Working With Recruiters And Search Firms. As promised, the second part of this series will cover the last five rules of working with a recruiter. I look forward to having you come back on Thursday.

 

 

As Talent Acquisition Manager, Jessica Drew focuses on finding the right candidates to fit our clients’ needs. She works with our clients to understand the exact skills and attributes that would fit with the cultural climate and their environment.

Posted in Hiring Best Practices, Recruiting, Talent Acquisition | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Culture, Growth, and Talent: Eight Ways to Find Healthy Growth – Part 2

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New-Life“If you don’t take action now, you are in serious jeopardy of having a major health issue.”

I remember speaking those words to Mike, a prospective health club member, in July of 1994. At the time, I was running an athletic club in New Jersey, and Mike visited the club with his wife and two children. Mike was considering whether he/they should become members. Mike lived a very sedentary lifestyle, and followed a nutritional program (if you can call it that) filled with processed foods. I failed Mike and his family on that day, because they left without ownership of a club membership. The next time I saw Mike was in March of the following year, after he had a heart attack, surgery, and was directed by his physician to join a club. To this day, I still carry some guilt with me that I was not able to bring Mike to the point of enrollment in our first encounter.

The results of a lifestyle marked by high levels of inactivity and processed foods shouldn’t surprise us. There is more data available than ever. There are more television shows documenting the lives of individuals who are morbidly obese (see “My 600 pound life” or “Biggest Loser” as examples), and yet, we are a more out of shape, more medicated, and unhealthy country than ever. Clearly, lack of evidence or knowledge are not the culprits here. So, what gives?

We could ask the same question about business health.

Today, there is more research and data that show the irrefutable links among winning culture, developing talent in an organization, and healthy business growth. Intuitively, it just makes sense, as well: Focus on building a winning culture, make the people in the organization a top priority (in actions, not just in words), and the results should include a thriving enterprise. Why, then, do so many companies fail to get it right?

Well, lots of reasons, actually. In today’s post, which is the second in a series on culture, growth, and talent, we are going to focus more on how to get it RIGHT, than the mistakes others make. This will put you on a faster path to healthy growth.
GET PAST organizational inertia (which is, in my opinion, one of the major killers of growth and impact) by following these very straightforward steps (these are entreQuest infused and adapted from John Kotter’s change methodology). But beware, just because they are straightforward doesn’t make them easy. You’ve got to muster courage, discipline, and resolve to work through all of what comes with moving an organization forward.

Create Urgency – What are the significant upsides, as well as the risks of taking action or not taking action? There are so many things that can distract executives, managers, and front line employees. Why should this “thing” get top billing?
Form a governance effort – How will decisions get made? How will the team or organization avoid analysis paralysis? How will risks be surfaced and escalated?

Develop a vision and strategy – This is really the first step. What does winning look like with regards to this effort? How will the organization know what “done” looks like, and what are the corresponding steps to successfully execute towards the vision?
Communicating the vision – This is not about sending an all-staff email or having one state-of-the-union presentation. Communication is an ongoing effort, and needs to include things like sharing information outwards, but also actively listening – especially to those on the front lines who will likely hold responsibility for a large part of the execution.

Enabling action and removal of obstacles – Responsibility without authority and vice versa will doom any change effort, especially when working to build a winning culture and fueling growth. With strong executive sponsorship and engagement, there needs to be a clear path to putting people in a position to execute the plan to remove their own barriers, and to get help when it is needed.

Generating short-term wins – Momentum is key. Establishing early wins will fuel engagement, spur creativity, and pull more people into driving successful change. For example, as opposed to only working towards a goal that is 18-24 months on the horizon, what is a win that can be claimed within 90 days?

Hold the gains and build on change – Early in my career, I had a boss who used to say that the best time to make a sale is right after you’ve made one. I still believe that. When making progress, learn from what is working, and build upon that success to gain even more traction.

Anchor changes in the culture – An interesting phenomenon occurs when it comes to change. In surveys and interviews, many people say they like change; that it is good and healthy for individuals and organization. With further investigation, people then go on to point out all of the places in the organization (other than their own) that could positively benefit from change. See, people dig it, as long as it doesn’t impact the way they are accustomed to operate. So, when it comes to driving culture change, know that people want to know why this time will be different, and why they should care. Although they may not verbalize it, many people are just waiting out this new initiative, so they can go back to their old way of operating. Not on your watch. Embed the changes in the fabric of the culture, including processes, systems, rituals, and artifacts of the organization.

Culture, growth, and talent. These are the key ingredients that will propel your organization towards living into your vision. Follow the change blueprint above, and you will see your teams flourish. These three elements of a healthy and successful business aren’t going anywhere – it’s time to start paying attention to them.

 

Andrew Freedman, Principal at entreQuest, specializes in helping eQ’s clients grow by creating well aligned company cultures and strategies that result in remarkable client and employee experiences.

Posted in Culture, growth, Leadership, Talent | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

My Interview with Jack & Suzy Welch

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Culture, Growth, and Talent: Three Elements of a Good Business – Part 1

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CGT Graphic“It doesn’t matter if people agree with you or not; have a definite perspective, as it will be a starting place for an educated and informed conversation.”

What seems like many moons ago, I had a mentor who gave me this advice. At the time, I was young(er), inexperienced in dealing directly with executives, and was having trouble being influential without authority in my organization. The counsel I received helped to ground me, give me confidence, and put me on a path towards where I am today.

As an organization, eQ also has certain perspectives. A foundational one for us is that we believe building a healthy, profitable company with massive impact starts with a focus on culture, growth, and talent.

This may seem intuitive, but look around. I can tell you from talking to hundreds of executives and thousands of employees that many companies are not actually bringing this focus to life. It is one thing to say an organization values people, wants a winning culture, and wants to grow, but do the actions support the claims? Really – how many companies are going to post on their website that they aspire to have a crappy culture and that they don’t value people? Zero. Zippy. Zilch.

Here is a quick way for you to do an organizational health check to see if you are on the path to following the recipe that we’ve used to help hundreds of companies GROW REGARDLESS. In the following categories, and with each element contained within the categories, think about whether your entire organization KNOWS, OWNS, and DRIVES these. Wherever you see gaps is an opportunity to operate with a higher level of precise execution towards healthy growth.

Every organization is on a specific journey. An opportunity that presents itself for you, as a leader, is how you want to chart the path, how you want to shape and frame the script, and how you really want to build your brand. For example, if you say you believe the people in the organization are your most valuable asset, yet you’ve not deliberately and specifically designed (with an eye on execution) a talent manifesto that maps the ideal candidate and employee experience (which also links to the broader organizational goals), then you are putting your brand and business health in jeopardy.

It is that simple and it is that serious.

Culture, growth, and talent. In our research and our practical experience in helping companies GROW REGARDLESS (and also creating an environment where we’ve been recognized as a Baltimore Best Place to Work for 3 years in a row), we know these elements to serve as a critical and non-negotiable recipe for success.

Get on the path, or you risk becoming irrelevant.

Looking to avoid this pitfall? Return to our blog on Thursday for the second part of our discussion on culture, growth, and talent.

 

Andrew Freedman, Principal at entreQuest, specializes in helping eQ’s clients grow by creating well aligned company cultures and strategies that result in remarkable client and employee experiences.

Posted in Business Strategy, Coaching, Consulting, Culture, Grow Regardless, growth, Success, Talent | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

5 important tips to landing your dream job

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SONY DSCWhether you find yourself annoyed with your job, bored with your work, or you just got laid off or fired, follow these five tips on what to do now to help you land your dream job! Do not dwell on the negatives, instead focus on where you want to go from here. It’s important to remember you cannot get to where you want to be unless you know where you are now.

1.Reflect
You can always learn something from your last job. Maybe you gained a new skillset, or you like (or dislike) something you never thought you would, or maybe you simply need a total overhaul in your career. Regardless of what it is, use your last job to make yourself a better candidate going into your next interview.

2.Buff up the old resume
Make sure that your resume is clean and easy to read. Add your current/most recent job and make sure you highlight what your role was. Also include any accomplishments or goals that you met while in that position. Remember this is one of the few times where you are supposed to boast about yourself.

3.Keep track of job applications
Recruiters understand that when you are looking for a new job you might apply to a few different types of positions. However, what we don’t understand is why you don’t always know what jobs you applied to. Don’t be a chronic applicant. You will never get your dream job if you don’t know what company or position you applied to.

4.Interview with confidence
Just because you haven’t interviewed in a while, doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be confident. This is one of the most exciting parts of looking for a new job. You get to meet a lot of great new people and learn about different companies. Make sure you know what the company you are interviewing with does, and why you want to work there. Also, be prepared with questions to ask. Even the most prepared candidates will have questions about something.

5.Always follow up
At this point you have interviewed and are playing the waiting game. Make sure you leave a good impression by following up with the hiring manager or recruiter by email, or even a hand written note. Following up is important, but not as important as knowing your boundaries. Respect the process, and understand that most companies who are looking for a great hire, will take a few days before getting back to you.

While the last step would be enjoy your dream job, maybe you haven’t found it yet. Don’t worry though, I am a Talent Consultant who can help make all these tips feel effortless. Email me if you are looking for a new adventure that will make you excited to go to work every day.

 

As a Talent Consultant, Jonna Faulise focuses on finding the right candidates to fit our clients’ needs. She works with our clients to understand the exact skills and attributes that would fit with the cultural climate and their environment.

Posted in Best Practices, Hiring Best Practices, Recruiting, Talent, Talent Acquisition | Leave a comment

The Secret to Getting Hired – A Celebrity Recommendation Letter

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Top SecretI’m a big fan of Conan O’Brien. I’m not sure if it’s the hair, or if it’s that I can easily relate to someone abnormally tall, but like many late night hosts he’s a genius at getting attention. And he recently got my attention.

I stumbled across an article he posted on LinkedIn of all places, called Hire Power, about the secret to getting hired. Although the article is a bit dated in terms of the fast paced world of social media (2013 – practically ancient at this point), the message itself is timeless and hilarious. According to Conan, “All you need to succeed in today’s competitive job market is a letter of recommendation from a politician or celebrity. That’s it. Nothing more, nothing less.” He even goes as far as posting a free-to-use letter of recommendation. All you have to do is circle the word that best applies to you.

Even though it was an effort by Conan to troll LinkedIn, there’s a not so subtle truth behind his message. The most commonly accepted practice to land a job today is in the oft repeated phrase – it’s all about who you know. Yes, leveraging your network and your social media base is the best place to start when you’re looking for a job, BUT you shouldn’t put all of your eggs in one LinkedIn basket.

So, in the event you don’t have a celebrity BFF to write you a letter of recommendation, what do you do next? I sat down with a few members of eQ’s Talent Group to get their thoughts.

• Community Connection: Just because you’re not friends with the CEO of a non-profit who saves orphans or three legged puppies doesn’t mean you can’t have a community connection. Jess Drew believes this shouldn’t stop you from actually getting out there and doing real community work. By doing this you may actually bump into someone who will be willing to give you that brilliant letter of recommendation Conan says you need.

• Know Before You Go: According to Susie Landgren, knowing the person you’re interviewing with, and actually doing your homework can pay dividends. Being able to prove you read more than just the job requirements can establish a positive rapport with your interviewer and shows your genuine interest in the position. You also need to stay authentic when you interview. If the person interviewing you has interviewed more than one other person, chances are they can smell any BS from a mile away. Try not to lie your way through the process.

• It’s Kind of a Big Deal: You may be a seasoned veteran of interviewing and the job application process, but you still need to take every one seriously. Jonna Faulise said you really have to put thought into the application and interview. When you take it seriously, and put genuine effort into the hiring process, it really shows. Be a stand out candidate. This stuff really isn’t something you can coast through…this isn’t high school.

• Keep it Simple Stupid: Not an original thought, but still a true one. You may feel like you’re doing your chances a favor by fluffing your resume with cool sounding action verbs and technical terminology, but you’re not. Jonna Faulise said it’s not uncommon for her to read someone’s resume and have no idea what they do in their job. Don’t over complicate your resume. Keep it simple stupid.

You don’t really need a celebrity recommendation letter. Although, who knows, it might not hurt. But if you’re not a famous celebrity yourself, there are ways to navigate the tricky job market without being an A-lister. A little bit of authenticity will never hurt your chances. If you still don’t believe me…you can always use Conan’s letter of recommendation on LinkedIn. The choice is yours.

 

As eQ’s Writing Specialist, Eric Stewart works his creative magic by putting our Team’s concepts, ideas, and methodologies into words!

Posted in LinkedIn, Talent, Talent Acquisition | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

In Plain Sight: Entrepreneurial lessons hidden in music videos

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OK GoHave you ever heard of the band OK Go? More importantly, have you ever watched an OK Go music video? If you have, chances are you’ve seen the band’s “treadmill video.” In this now world-famous video, the four band members do an incredible choreographed dance on eight treadmills – and they record it all in one take! It’s wild!

The band has since become even more famous for their highly creative one-shot music videos that delight, awe, and inspire millions of people all over the world.

Below are the song names for some of OK Go’s best music videos. Check them out online to see why the band has become a worldwide sensation through their videos alone. There is no doubt that your spirits will be lifted after seeing the simplicity, originality, and off-the-charts creativity of OK Go.

Don’t believe me? Check it out for yourself:

2006: A Million Ways

• Dance choreographed by the lead singer’s sister and performed in a backyard in one take

• Became the most downloaded music video in history with 9 million downloads in 2006

2006: Here it Goes Again

• Dance choreographed by the lead singer’s sister and performed in a spare room in her house on eight treadmills in one take

•  2007 Grammy Award for “Best Music Video”

•  2011 Time Magazine named it one of “The 30 All-Time Best Music Videos”

2010: This Too Shall Pass (Marching Band version)

• Performed with the University of Notre Dame Marching Band in one take

2010: This Too Shall Pass (Rube Goldberg Machine version)

• Half-mile-long Rube Goldberg machine engineered to operate with the song in one take

• 2010 UK Music Video Awards for “Video of the Year” and “Best Rock Video”

• 2010 LA Film Fest’s Audience Award for “Best Music Video”

2014: I Won’t Let You Down

• Motorized unicycles and 2,300 volunteer dancers with umbrellas are filmed in Japan using a drone in one take

From the amateur backyard dance, to the innovative treadmill routine, to an aerial shot of 1,500 colorful umbrellas…over 200 million people have viewed OK Go’s unique music videos. Because they have so many followers anxiously awaiting each video release, the band’s videos go viral within a matter of hours after release. Each video is extremely different from the last, and surprises viewers with each debut.

The band does not have the budget to produce monumental music videos like Michael Jackson’s Thriller or Peter Gabriel’s Sledgehammer, but OK Go can still create videos that appeal to humans all over the world. They don’t need flashy cars and fancy animation but instead, they win their fans over by amusing them through simplistic elements like: color, marching bands, dominoes, dogs, etc. OK Go has been able to connect with viewers through these lower-budget videos at a more human level than many of the big pop stars of the world.

When CNN asked why their music videos have been so successful, OK Go’s lead singer, Damian Kulash, said, “Content succeeds online, because it brings people joy, it makes them smile — it’s interesting enough to be passed along to friends and family members. That’s no stunt — it’s just a matter of making something that’s genuine and interesting…What do you wanna pass to your best friend or your mother or your co-worker? It’s joy or wonder or excitement or something that will actually make their day better.”

If you look up “Internet phenomena” on Wikipedia, OK Go videos are listed along with “Gangnam Style” and “Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon.” The band filmed an awkward dance routine in a backyard in 2005, uploaded the video on the internet, and watched their first breakthrough song “A Million Ways” explode, all thanks to the pure and simple joy the video brought to millions.

So, why all this talk about a band and their music videos? Where’s the connection?

Like OK Go in a backyard, start-ups and small businesses have the opportunity to create world-famous products and services without big budgets, expensive websites, and flashy marketing materials. People often let fear override their ambitions and dreams. For every one fantastic product or service out there, there’s likely 10 that never see the light of day because they’re broken down in people’s minds out of fear of failure.

But, the catch is OK Go didn’t give in and fail because they didn’t let barriers of success get in the way. There is quite a parallel with Franklin Roosevelt’s famous quote, “The only thing we have to fear, is fear itself.”

Challenge yourself to create. Remove fear and just innovate. Do you think people like Jobs, Gates, or Page let the established status quo win? Absolutely not.

So ask yourself, what can you create in your backyard that will make someone smile or make someone’s day a little better…and perhaps grow a business empire at the same time?

 

As a Talent Consultant, Daley Navalkowsky focuses on finding the right candidates to fit our clients’ needs. She works with our clients to understand the exact skills and attributes that would fit with the cultural climate and their environment.

Posted in Coaching, Grow Regardless | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

A weekend with Richard Branson and even big-GER dreams

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maverick_necker_island_thumbnail_email_p1I felt like I had just jumped out of a plane: that momentary feeling of exhilaration. Meeting Richard Branson for the first time, in the same room where he hosted the Elders, I was honored to be standing where such influential leaders had previously stood.

I recently shared with you the importance of surrounding yourself with people who push you beyond your intellectual and creative limits, and I’ve also talked a lot about how it’s important to be in the right room with the right people. Being even transitively in the same room as World Leaders like Jimmy Carter, Kofi Annan, Desmond Tutu, and Nelson Mandela left me feeling inspired. Taking it even further, I was on Necker Island, Branson’s private getaway, as part of a Maverick experience with more than 20 of the smartest executives and entrepreneurs in the World.

Get a glimpse of what the Maverick experience on Necker Island was like, here.

Now, back in Baltimore, I’m feeling energized, enlightened, and eager to share my experiences with you!

During The Vision 2020 Project, a brainstorming meeting with Branson and Virgin Unite, those in attendance were encouraged to think, dream, and achieve bigger! In a room full of forward thinkers, we discussed what we want the future of entrepreneurship to look like. We contemplated the multitude of global issues entrepreneurs like you and I can solve collectively. That’s how big we should all be thinking!

A key take-away: whatever your goals, mission, vision, or dreams are for the future… you need to make them bigger. I’m telling you right now – they’re not big enough.

In his book, BOLD, Peter Diamandis details the idea of moonshot thinking. Diamandis explains, “Moonshots, by their definition, live in that gray area between audacious projects and pure science fiction. Instead of mere 10 percent gains, they aim for 10x (meaning ten times) improvements—that’s a 1,000 percent increase in performance.” What an incredibly powerful notion.

This is an idea we all need to get behind. Let’s all make our visions bigger. Let’s have a bigger impact, make a bigger change in our community, and bring bigger growth to our businesses.

Big-GER is how I propose we create and realize truly amazing impact:

• G = get, grow, give –Embrace the idea that you don’t have to grow, you GET to grow. You get to share your dreams with others: give them the opportunity to share in your vision and growth.

• E = effort, energy, enthusiasm –Without the right effort, energy, and enthusiasm, you’ll continue to be a dreamer: your vision remaining science fiction until you make it reality. You have to put in the work and be passionate about it.

• R = relevant, raw, results – Milestones, big or small, should be celebrated; but be mindful that they are relevant to the end goal. Roll up your sleeves, be intentional, be raw: don’t let the fear of failure get in the way of results.

Our trip to Necker Island has taught me more than I ever imagined. Maverick’s conversation with Branson and Virgin Unite is far from over. We’re cultivating quite a powerful relationship together and working toward an even big-GER vision for the future.

Want to make it big-GER with us? Get in the game with Maverick.

 

Joe Mechlinski is CEO and Co-Founder of entreQuest, where he’s helped hundreds of companies prosper through some of the worst economic times in history. Joe’s debut book, Grow Regardless, an instant New York Times bestseller, defines strategic growth, change management, and organizational development.

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What rush hour traffic taught me about work-life balance

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view through the windshield of a car during rain

It’s 7:30. I stare out the window of my VW; driving into work, ignoring the usual chaos that is the Baltimore Beltway. But this morning, I barely notice the sea of brake lights in front of me, this morning I’m thinking – wow, I’m lucky.  I get to be here. Not here on the Beltway, no one ever really wants to be there. But here in the sense of where I am, where I now find myself – at an incredible junction in my life.

Have you ever felt that way before? Personally? Professionally? In today’s day and age, employers are seeing a trend of transient job holders. The millennial generation job-hops like no one’s business (think Tigger on steroids) and for what? Because we want to learn what we can and our motivators outweigh our satisfiers. Research shows that millennials value benefits and culture above pay. So what’s this all mean? It means I’ve been thinking about what life has in store for me, and the immense gratitude I feel for eQ and its intentional onboarding process. In my experience, a calendar with my first month planned out was not a part of my arrival on the job, but at eQ it is, because entreQuest specializes in this strategy. eQ actively thinks about the onboarding process, and advises clients on what this involves and what is necessary to attract talent and retain talent. It all just clicked for me staring out the window.

I recently read an article that quoted the CEO of Etsy.com. Now I’m paraphrasing here, but he basically said that it’s not about work-life balance. Today, it’s about work-life integration. It was as if a plastic hammer, you know the kind you receive at a carnival, whaled on my head. Duh. Today we spend more time away from home than ever. It’s imperative for my happiness, passion, and purpose that I find a place that serves as home away from home. Day one, I felt like I joined a work family.

Where I’ve joined has expectations. And they are completely warranted because my employer is transparent, authentic, and speaks from a place of trust. I clearly recall being told in my interviews, “we’re all adults here.” So, where I’m going with this is, there’s maturity, flexibility, and accountability at my workplace. There’s a humbleness and wholeness. People are themselves and bring their whole self to the office. This means that life and work are blended. It would be unnatural if we tried to keep them separate. Lots of organizations still experience the effects of people not being fully present – in essence, holding back. eQ has been preaching the importance of authenticity for a long time, and it certainly shows in our office and visible difference are felt for our clients practicing wholeness as well. Maybe it’s time you ask yourself, would you rather feel limited and hesitant in your day-to-day or would you prefer to feel encouraged to be fully there? Think about it.

 

 

Alexandra Wieland is a Project Specialist at entreQuest and works closely with all eQ team members to provide employees and clients with remarkable experiences.

 

Posted in Culture, Gratitude, Millennials | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

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