Open post Tech Career Reboot Recap for May - Working Together to Navigate Layoffs - Find Your Next Employer - Own a Channel - Timing is Everything - Volunteer -Hire Yourself - Pivot

Tech Career Reboot – May 2024 Recap

Tech Career Reboot - May 2024 Recap

Tech Career Reboot Recap - Unconventional Job Search Strategies with Jon Bach

Hey there, tech career enthusiasts! If you couldn't make it to our recent Tech Career Reboot session, don't worry—we've got all the highlights for you right here. This time, we had the pleasure of hearing from Jon Bach, who shared some truly unconventional job search techniques he's been using. Grab a coffee and get comfortable, we've got a lot to share in this insightful recap!

Jon kicked things off with a heartfelt thank you to the Tech Career Reboot community for their ongoing support and efforts. He stressed how valuable it is to have a group like this where professionals can come together, share experiences, and support one another through challenging times.

Jon acknowledged the typical job search advice we all know—updating resumes, using the right keywords, crafting compelling cover letters, and networking. While these strategies are important, he pointed out that they often feel like "table stakes"—the basics that everyone does. Jon was eager to go beyond these basics and dive into more unique, "double black diamond ski slope" ideas. Just like the most challenging ski runs, these strategies push boundaries and require a higher level of skill and creativity. Jon’s goal was to offer something fresh and innovative to truly make a difference in navigating today’s tough job market.

Unconventional Pro Tips and Going Beyond

Jon started by acknowledging the typical job search tips that many of us are familiar with. These are the foundational strategies often recommended to job seekers. While useful, Jon aimed to dig deeper and offer more actionable, nuanced advice. Here are the conventional tips he touched upon:

1. Timing is Everything
We all know timing plays a crucial role in job searching. Jon wanted to provide more actionable strategies beyond the usual tips. He discussed the importance of understanding industry cycles and company-specific timelines, such as quarterly planning periods when companies might allocate budgets and resources for new hires. By being aware of these critical times, job seekers can strategically position themselves to be at the right place at the right time.

2. Volunteering
Volunteering is often suggested as a way to gain visibility and experience. While this advice is valuable, Jon noted it frequently lacks specifics. Simply telling someone to volunteer doesn’t provide much direction. Jon emphasized the importance of volunteering in high-impact roles that align with your career goals. For instance, taking on a fractional role in a startup or offering your expertise to a nonprofit in a way that showcases your skills can make a significant difference. He encouraged us to think strategically about where and how we volunteer to maximize the benefits.

3. Self-Belief and Pivoting
The advice to believe in oneself and be open to pivoting in one’s career is common. However, Jon aimed to provide more practical guidance on how to actually do this. He talked about recognizing transferable skills and being willing to explore new career paths. Jon shared his own experiences of pivoting roles and how it helped him stay relevant and adaptable in the ever-changing job market. He encouraged us to not just think about pivoting as a vague concept but to actively seek out opportunities to apply our existing skills in new and innovative ways.

Finding Your Next Employer

Jon posed an intriguing challenge: think about how you’d find someone like yourself if you were the hiring manager. This thought experiment is more than just an exercise in self-reflection—it’s a strategic approach to job searching. By understanding and valuing your own skills and experiences, you can better position yourself in the job market and target the right opportunities.

Jon emphasized this isn’t just about listing your skills on a resume. It’s about truly understanding what makes you unique and how you can bring value to a potential employer. He encouraged us to consider what qualities and experiences we would look for if we were in the hiring position. This perspective can help tailor job search efforts more effectively and identify roles where we can make the most impact.

Technique #1: Join a Discord or Slack Group and Own a Channel

Jon's first unconventional technique involved leveraging community platforms like Discord or Slack, which are popular among tech professionals. Instead of just joining these groups and passively participating, Jon suggested taking a more proactive approach by owning a piece of the community.

For example, Jon joined a Discord group focused on software quality engineering. Rather than just participating in discussions, he took on the responsibility of managing a channel within the group. He created a "Topic of the Week" channel, where he posted weekly discussion topics related to software quality.

This consistent engagement served multiple purposes:

Building Connections: By regularly contributing valuable content, Jon positioned himself as a thought leader within the community. This helped him build connections with other professionals who share his interests.
Increasing Visibility: Managing a channel gave Jon higher visibility within the group. Members came to expect and look forward to his weekly posts, which kept him top-of-mind for potential opportunities.
Demonstrating Expertise: By choosing relevant and thought-provoking topics, Jon showcased his knowledge and expertise in software quality engineering. This not only helped him gain respect within the community but also provided a platform to demonstrate his skills to potential employers.

Jon’s approach to managing the channel was strategic. He ensured his posts were consistent, predictable, and reliable. By doing this, he created a routine that members could depend on, which helped build trust and engagement over time.

Technique #2: Timing is Everything

Jon emphasized that timing can significantly influence the success of your job search. While it’s common advice to time your applications and social media posts for optimal visibility, Jon took this idea further by suggesting a more strategic approach based on company cycles and industry trends.

Target Key Dates

Jon explained that many companies operate on quarterly planning cycles, where they allocate budgets and resources for upcoming projects. These key planning dates often fall around the same time each year: December 5th, March 5th, June 5th, and September 5th. By targeting these dates, job seekers can align their applications with times when companies are likely to be planning their hiring needs.

Why These Dates Matter:

December 5th: Companies plan for Q1 of the following year, making it a prime time for setting new budgets and identifying staffing needs.
March 5th: Planning for Q2 takes place, with companies evaluating the first quarter’s performance and making adjustments for the upcoming quarter.
June 5th: Companies plan for Q3, often ramping up projects for the second half of the year, which might require additional hires.
September 5th: Planning for Q4 occurs, with companies preparing for end-of-year projects and setting the stage for the next fiscal year.

By understanding and leveraging these planning cycles, job seekers can strategically time their applications to coincide with periods when companies are more likely to have new budget allocations and staffing requirements.

Additional Tips: Monitor Business Journals

Karen offered a valuable addition to Jon’s timing strategy. She recommended monitoring business journals for news about companies receiving new funding. This information can be a goldmine for job seekers because newly funded companies often have the financial resources to expand and hire new talent.

Steps to Implement This Strategy:

Monitor Business Journals: Keep an eye on reputable business journals and websites that report on funding news. Examples include the Puget Sound Business Journal, TechCrunch, and VentureBeat.
Set Up Google Alerts: Create Google Alerts for specific keywords related to funding and companies of interest. This way, you’ll receive notifications when news about these companies is published.
Research Funded Companies: When you identify a company that has recently received funding, research their business model, growth plans, and hiring needs. Companies that secure significant funding often need to scale their operations quickly, leading to new job openings.
Reach Out Strategically: Even if these companies don’t have job openings listed yet, reaching out to introduce yourself and express your interest can put you on their radar for future opportunities. Highlight your relevant skills and how you can contribute to their growth.

By combining Jon’s advice on timing with Karen’s tip on monitoring business journals, you can significantly enhance your job search strategy. This proactive approach not only ensures that you are applying at the right time but also targets companies that are in a growth phase and likely to be hiring. Jon appreciated Karen’s idea and considered it a valuable double black diamond technique, adding depth to the overall strategy and providing a more comprehensive approach to job searching.

Technique #3: Volunteer in High-Impact Roles

Jon highlighted the importance of volunteering as a strategy for enhancing visibility and showcasing skills. However, instead of the usual advice to volunteer at any opportunity, he emphasized the need to seek out high-impact roles that align closely with your career aspirations.

Think Strategically About Volunteering

Jon encourages us to be strategic about where and how we volunteer. Rather than taking on any available role, he suggests looking for opportunities where you can apply your professional skills in a meaningful way. For example, volunteering as a fractional CTO, program manager, or in other leadership positions can provide substantial benefits. These roles not only allow you to contribute significantly to the organization but also enable you to demonstrate your expertise and leadership abilities.

Jon’s Personal Experience

Jon shared his own experience of volunteering at a boutique development shop. By taking on a senior program manager role in a part-time, volunteer capacity, he aims to prove his value to the organization with the hope of securing a full-time position in the future. This approach allows him to build a strong relationship with the company, understand their needs, and showcase his capabilities in a real-world setting.

Benefits of Volunteering in High-Impact Roles:

Showcase Your Skills: Volunteering in roles that are closely related to your desired career path enables you to directly demonstrate your abilities. This practical experience can be more compelling to potential employers than traditional resumes or interviews.
Build Valuable Connections: By working closely with professionals in your field, you can develop relationships that might lead to job offers or referrals. Networking in this way is often more effective because it is based on shared work experiences and proven capabilities.
Gain Insight into the Industry: Volunteering in a strategic role gives you insider knowledge about industry trends, challenges, and opportunities. This information can be invaluable during job interviews and in tailoring your job search strategy.
Enhance Your Resume: High-impact volunteer roles can significantly boost your resume. They demonstrate initiative, leadership, and a commitment to your field, all of which are attractive qualities to potential employers.

Cindy Ponko’s Perspective on Intentional Volunteering

Cindy Ponko built on Jon’s advice by emphasizing the importance of being intentional about where we invest our energy. She shared her own experiences and noted that spreading oneself too thin across numerous activities can lead to burnout and diluted efforts. Instead, Cindy suggests focusing on volunteer opportunities that align with your personal and professional goals.

Cindy’s Key Points:

Avoid Dilution: Rather than trying to be everywhere at once, concentrate on a few high-impact activities that are closely related to your career objectives. This focused approach ensures that your efforts are meaningful and impactful.
Align with Your Goals: Choose volunteer roles that complement your career path and help you develop relevant skills. By aligning your volunteer work with your professional goals, you increase the likelihood of these experiences translating into job opportunities.
Be Selective: It’s important to evaluate each volunteer opportunity and decide if it’s the right fit for you. Prioritize roles that offer growth, learning, and networking potential.

Technique #4: Hire Yourself - Do Something for Someone That Demonstrates Your Skill

Jon introduced a creative approach to job searching: hiring yourself. This technique involves proactively showcasing your skills directly to potential employers in a way that highlights your capabilities and initiative. The idea is to demonstrate what you can do for a company without waiting for them to ask for it.

Jon suggested several ways to implement this approach:

Freelancing Platforms: Registering with freelancing services like Upwork, Fiverr, or Freelancer allows you to take on small projects that showcase your skills. These platforms provide opportunities to build a portfolio, gain client feedback, and demonstrate your expertise in real-world scenarios.
Mock Projects: Identify poorly designed websites, apps, or other products and create mock redesigns or improvements. This approach is especially effective for roles in design, development, and marketing. By showing what you can do to enhance a company's product, you make a compelling case for your hiring.
Bug Reports: For those in software testing or quality assurance, find bugs in publicly accessible websites or applications and send detailed bug reports to the company. This not only demonstrates your skills but also shows your proactive problem-solving attitude.

Bold Moves on Social Media

Jon also suggested making bold moves on social media to attract attention and showcase your skills. This can include:

Public Collaborations: Collaborate publicly with colleagues or industry professionals on social media platforms like LinkedIn. For example, you can co-author posts, engage in professional banter, or discuss industry trends and challenges. This not only highlights your expertise but also expands your network and visibility.
Content Creation: Regularly create and share content that showcases your skills and knowledge. This could be in the form of blog posts, videos, webinars, or infographics. Consistently providing valuable content positions you as a thought leader in your field.

By using Jon’s proactive skill demonstration, you can create a powerful approach to job searching. This method not only showcases your skills in a tangible way but also gives you a competitive edge.

Technique #5: The Pivot

Jon emphasizes the importance of being open to pivoting in our careers, particularly in an ever-evolving job market. A career pivot involves shifting from one role or industry to another, leveraging transferable skills to succeed in the new position. Jon shared his own journey of moving from Quality Assurance (QA) to program management, illustrating how skills from one role can seamlessly translate to another and provide new opportunities for growth.

Jon recounted his personal experience of transitioning from QA to program management. He explained that the analytical and problem-solving skills he honed in QA were invaluable in his new role. As a QA professional, Jon was accustomed to identifying and addressing issues, ensuring quality standards were met, and collaborating with various stakeholders. These skills naturally complemented the responsibilities of a program manager, who must oversee projects, manage risks, and coordinate between teams.

Jon’s successful pivot demonstrates that by recognizing and leveraging our transferable skills, we can adapt to new roles and industries more effectively. This adaptability not only broadens our career prospects but also enhances our resilience in the face of job market fluctuations.

Becoming "Good Enough Experts"

Jon introduced the concept of becoming "good enough experts." This involves achieving a level of proficiency that is beyond a beginner’s but not necessarily at an expert level. The goal is to know enough to add value and assist others, without the pressure of achieving complete mastery.

Key Points about "Good Enough Experts":

Broad Knowledge Base: Focus on building a broad understanding of the new field or role. This allows you to apply your skills in various contexts and adapt to different challenges.
Practical Application: Use your knowledge to solve real-world problems. Practical experience is often more valuable than theoretical expertise, as it demonstrates your ability to apply what you know.
Helping Others: By becoming a "good enough expert," you can mentor and support others who are newer to the field. This not only solidifies your own understanding but also enhances your professional network and reputation.

Jon encourages everyone to embrace the idea of pivoting in their careers. He stresses that by recognizing and leveraging our transferable skills, becoming "good enough experts," and balancing critical thinking with positivity, we can adapt to new roles and industries with confidence. This adaptability is key to thriving in a dynamic job market and achieving long-term career success.

Importance of Physical Networking Events

During the session, several participants shared their personal experiences and highlighted the significance of engaging in physical networking events. While online platforms like LinkedIn are valuable for maintaining a professional presence, attendees emphasized that face-to-face interactions at events such as tech meetups, conferences, and industry workshops often lead to more meaningful connections. These events provide opportunities to:

Build Trust: In-person interactions allow for more authentic and spontaneous conversations, which can help build trust more quickly than online exchanges.
Showcase Personality: Meeting someone in person gives you the chance to showcase your personality and enthusiasm, which can leave a lasting impression.
Immediate Feedback: Physical events offer the advantage of immediate feedback and engagement, allowing for dynamic discussions and the opportunity to ask and answer questions on the spot.

Challenges of Relying Solely on LinkedIn

Despite the benefits of LinkedIn and similar platforms, participants acknowledged the challenges of relying exclusively on online networking. These challenges include:

Overcrowding: LinkedIn is saturated with professionals vying for attention, making it difficult to stand out.
Engagement Quality: The platform often favors engagement metrics over meaningful interactions, leading to superficial connections.
Algorithm Limitations: LinkedIn’s algorithms can limit the visibility of your posts and updates, making it harder to reach your target audience.

Creating a Niche Community

Recognizing the limitations of mainstream platforms, Jon and his brother decided to create a specialized workshop focused on critical thinking about AI. They aimed to build a community of like-minded individuals who are passionate about exploring the ethical and practical implications of AI. By creating their own space, they sought to:

Foster Deeper Engagement: A niche community allows for more in-depth discussions and a higher level of engagement among members.
Curate Content: Jon and his brother could curate content and discussions that align with the community’s interests, ensuring relevance and value.
Build a Supportive Network: A focused community provides a supportive environment where members can share insights, challenge each other’s ideas, and grow together.

Balancing Focus and Defocus

Jon suggests a balanced approach, using focus and defocus strategies depending on your energy levels and goals.

Focus Strategy

Deep Engagement: When you have the energy and resources, focus deeply on a specific activity or community. This allows you to make a substantial impact and build strong connections.
Targeted Efforts: Apply your efforts to high-impact areas where you can showcase your skills and add value.

Defocus Strategy

Broad Outreach: At times, it’s beneficial to cast a wider net. Engaging in various activities can create more touchpoints and opportunities for unexpected connections.
Exploration: Use defocusing periods to explore new areas, attend different events, and connect with a diverse group of people. This can lead to serendipitous opportunities and insights.

Finding the Balance

Jon’s advice is to find a balance between these two strategies. By knowing when to focus deeply and when to spread your efforts more broadly, you can maximize your opportunities for meaningful connections without risking burnout. The key is to listen to your energy levels and be strategic about where and how you invest your time.

Both Cindy and Jon agreed that the key to successful networking and community engagement lies in being intentional and balanced. By prioritizing high-impact activities, creating niche communities, and strategically balancing focus and defocus efforts, professionals can build stronger, more meaningful connections that support their career growth.

Wrapping Up

Jon Bach's session at the Tech Career Reboot was both insightful and inspiring, offering a fresh perspective on navigating the job market with innovative strategies. His unconventional techniques, from leveraging community platforms to timing job applications strategically, highlighted the importance of creativity and resilience in job searching. The emphasis on volunteering in impactful roles, hiring yourself by showcasing skills, and being open to career pivots provided valuable takeaways for all attendees.

The interactive discussion underscored the power of community, reminding us that while the job search journey can be challenging, it is one best undertaken with the support and shared wisdom of others. As we move forward, let’s apply these strategies, stay connected, and continue supporting each other in our professional journeys. Together, we can overcome obstacles and achieve our career aspirations.

Stay connected, stay persistent, and join us at the next Tech Career Reboot on June 19th at 10:30 am to continue unlocking the secrets of success in the ever-evolving world of tech careers.

Until our next meeting, keep pushing boundaries and embracing new opportunities. Here’s to your career reboot and the exciting paths ahead! Let's navigate the tech job market together and elevate your career to new heights!

As always, feel free to reach out to us at contact@quardev.com.

 

Job Hunting? Let us help! - Search Jobs Now

 

Open post Tech Career Reboot - The March Recap - Bypassing ATS - Networking - Utilizing LinkedIn

Tech Career Reboot – March 2024 Recap

From Ordinary to Extraordinary: Customizing Your Resume for Job Search Success

Tech Career Reboot Recap - Unlocking Career Opportunities Beyond Online Applications with Susan Loth

Hey there, fellow career seekers! If you missed out on our recent March 20th Tech Career Reboot Meetup, don't worry - we've got you covered. This session we were excited to welcome Susan Loth as our guest speaker. Susan has been a Job Search Coach and LinkedIn aficionado since 2006, and she joined us to share her wealth of networking knowledge. Little did we know how valuable this session would be.

We are inundated with accounts of job seekers submitting hundreds of online applications, only to experience radio-silence - this may be your experience. It is frustrating, exhausting, and at times, soul-crushing, but Susan suggests there is another way. Let's explore the eye-opening insights she walked us through.

First and foremost, Susan believes the "spray and pray" method is just as ineffective as many of us have suspected, with only a tiny portion of jobs getting filled through those online portals. She is challenging this notion and, in turn, opened our eyes to career opportunities beyond the click of a submit button. She gave us a gift - she reminded us of the value of returning to the basics.

Bypassing Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS) and Personalizing Your Job Search Approach

Alright, let's get into it! Susan doesn't subscribe to the passive approach of submitting resumes through impersonal Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS). Nope, that's not her style!

Instead, Susan advocates for getting up close and personal. She's all about rolling up those sleeves and diving headfirst into the real connections within the company. You know, the people who can make things happen! Personal referrals or a good word from someone within the company will always go the farthest and experience the best chance of success.

Find a Connection in Your Network

This may seem intimidating at first, but let's break it down. Do you know anyone who works at the company you're interested in? Do you know anyone, who knows anyone, who works at the company you're interested in? In theory, you are only six degrees away from anyone in the world, right? You may be surprised at just how connected you are after you've conducted some research.

Find a Connection on LinkedIn

If you're unable to find a personal connection, Susan suggests going right to the source. Use LinkedIn to find someone working in the Human Resources department, or potentially more challenging - find the hiring manager and follow or connect with them. Once you're connected, send a personalized message with your resume attached. This increases the chance they will see you a hundred-fold, you're in their inbox. By initiating direct contact, you're no longer a faceless application lost in ether; you are an enthusiastic human with the skills they are looking for.

Moreover, forget about firing off generic messages to every recipient in sight. Susan always champions quality over quantity. She encourages crafting personalized messages akin to a finely tailored suit - perfectly suited to the specific role and individual you're addressing. This can be a game-changer!

Embracing the Power of Networking: Cultivating Meaningful Connections for Long-Term Success

Susan stresses the transformative potential of networking, emphasizing that it's not merely about accumulating a list of contacts but rather about fostering genuine, reciprocal relationships. She encourages us to view networking as an ongoing journey rather than a one-time endeavor, highlighting the importance of consistent engagement and nurturing connections over time.

Put Yourself Out There

By actively participating in networking events, maintaining communication with professional contacts, and offering support to others in our network, we not only expand our opportunities but also contribute to a thriving community of professionals. Susan emphasizes the value of building rapport and trust within our networks, as these connections often lead to unexpected career advancements, collaborations, and mentorship opportunities.

Pay it Forward

Furthermore, Susan highlights the importance of paying it forward, reminding us to extend assistance and resources to others within our network, even when we're not actively seeking employment. By cultivating a culture of reciprocity and generosity, we create a network that is not only supportive but also instrumental in our long-term professional growth and success.

Susan's insights highlighted the significance of networking as a cornerstone of career development. By investing time and effort into building meaningful connections and fostering a spirit of reciprocity within our professional communities, we position ourselves for sustained success and fulfillment in our careers.

Utilizing LinkedIn the Right Way: A Game-Changer for Job Seekers

Susan unveiled the incredible potential of LinkedIn in reshaping your approach to job hunting if utilized effectively. Gone are the days when simply having a profile sufficed; now, it's about crafting a compelling narrative! Your LinkedIn profile should serve as a true reflection of your talents, skills, and personality, resonating authentically with potential employers. But here's the kicker: it's not just about what you say about yourself—it's also about what others say about you.

Get Your Recommendations

That's why it's crucial to gather recommendations that highlight different facets of your professional prowess. Aim to have at least three recommendations: one from a superior, showcasing your leadership and strategic abilities; one from a coworker, illustrating your collaborative spirit and team-player mentality; and one from a subordinate, demonstrating your mentorship and management skills. With these recommendations in hand, your profile becomes a powerful testament to your multifaceted excellence.

And let's not overlook the importance of a polished, professional photo—it's the first impression you'll make, so make it count! No fuzzy selfies allowed—opt for a crisp, clear headshot that exudes confidence and professionalism.

Connect with Intent

Once your profile represents you and all you have to offer, get out there and start connecting! But connect with intent: it's not about the quantity of connections you have; it's all about the quality of the relationships you are fostering. Susan stresses the importance of meaningful interactions over just adding people left and right. So, when you're reaching out, make it personal. Show genuine interest, ask questions, and nurture these connections with the same care you'd bestow any budding friendship.

Be a Part of the Conversation

Furthermore, LinkedIn isn't just a place to showcase your professional achievements. It's a vibrant hub for exchanging insights, participating in thought-provoking conversations, and forging bonds with fellow aficionados in your industry. So, don't be shy—get out there, share your wisdom, and watch your network flourish.

Maintaining Momentum: Staying Proactive

Now, we all know job searching can feel like navigating a maze blindfolded — it's tough, it's frustrating, and it's easy to feel like you're banging your head against a brick wall. But it doesn't have to be that way. You are not the pinball, you are the player! Rather than idly waiting for the perfect job to materialize, it's time to take matters into your own hands. Reach out to your network, engage in those in-person networking events (or yes, even the virtual ones), and boldly put yourself out there - that's where the action is. Your dream job awaits, and with a dash of grit and determination, you'll secure it sooner than you think!

Prioritizing Self-Care: A Little Self-Love Goes a Long Way

It's understandable. You're knee-deep in your job search, and carving out time for yourself might seem like an indulgence you can't afford. But here's the thing: neglecting your well-being can put a damper on your job search efforts in the long haul. Trust us, a burnt-out, frazzled version of yourself won't make the best impression in that interview. So, let's make self-care a non-negotiable part of your job search strategy.

Whether it's scheduling a quiet moment for yourself, strolling through your favorite forest, or connecting with a friend, taking care of yourself is paramount for preserving your sanity and bolstering your resilience during these testing times. And self-care isn't just about pampering yourself (although that's certainly a perk!), it's also about setting boundaries, knowing when to say no, and practicing self-compassion.

Job hunting is a rollercoaster of emotions—there will be peaks and valleys, victories and setbacks. But through it all, it's important to be gentle with yourself and acknowledge that you are human. So, go ahead—put your well-being first, recharge those batteries, and approach your job search with fresh vigor and optimism. Your future self will be eternally grateful!

Wrapping Up

And there you have it — the recap of our March session of Tech Career Reboot! We have covered a lot - but keep in mind: you're not looking to land just any job; it's about finding your perfect fit — one that ignites your passion, challenges your skills, and fills your mornings with enthusiasm.

We are so thankful to Susan for sharing her sage advice and fresh perspective, with her insights you are sure to be well-equipped for your job search. Keep that proactive spirit alive, and, above all, stay authentically you. With a little luck, a healthy dose of hustle, and a dash of self-care thrown in for good measure, you'll be well on your way to achieving your career aspirations in no time.

Until we meet again, keep hustling and keep those dreams ablaze! Your future self will undoubtedly thank you for it. Here's to exciting beginnings and thrilling adventures on the horizon!

Next time, you could be part of the conversation! Join us on the third Wednesday of every month - our next will be April 17th at 10:30 am PDT. We'd love to see you there! Stay tuned for more details.

As always, feel free to reach out to us at contact@quardev.com.

 

Job Hunting? Let us help! - Search Jobs Now

 

Open post Tech Career Reboot! Working Together to Navigate Layoffs. The Recap for February

Tech Career Reboot Recap – February 2024

From Ordinary to Extraordinary: Customizing Your Resume for Job Search Success

Welcome to the "Tech Career Reboot - The Recap," where we are offering insights and highlights from our monthly virtual meetup. Tech Career Reboot is a virtual, monthly meeting dedicated to supporting people navigating career transitions in technology. Our hope is for this blog to serve as a valuable resource for our community and beyond.

We're committed to fostering a supportive community where people facing career transitions can find encouragement, advice, and solidarity. Through our recap blog, we aim to extend this sense of community and provide valuable insights gleaned from our collective experiences and discussions. Our goal is to create a space where you can find hope, resilience, and a sense of belonging as you navigate the ups and downs of your professional life. So, pull up a chair and join us as we delve into the insights and highlights from our most recent Tech Career Reboot meetup.

With the power of community behind us, there's no challenge we can't overcome together.

AI Help for Resumes and Cover Letters

During this week's Tech Career Reboot, we delved into innovative strategies for utilizing AI tools in your job search, crafting resumes and cover letters, specifically. Imagine having a virtual assistant at your side, helping tailor your application materials to catch the eye of resume screeners.

By simply pasting the job description along with your resume into the text box, you can prompt AI to generate a customized cover letter or resume perfectly aligned with the position you're pursuing. Plus, you can take it a step further by prompting AI to customize your resume for each position you apply for, ensuring it highlights your most relevant skills and experiences. While AI tools can streamline the process and provide a strong foundation, it's crucial to remember to edit the results to ensure your unique insights and adaptability shine through.

AI Help for Data Visualization

Platforms like Copilot can be a game-changer in your job search journey, particularly when it comes to showcasing your skills and achievements. With Copilot's assistance, you can take your resume to the next level by generating visually appealing charts or graphs that highlight your expertise, experience, and accomplishments. Whether you're crafting intricate charts or dynamic graphs, Copilot streamlines the process, allowing you to convey complex information in a clear and easily understandable format.

For example, you can create bar charts to showcase proficiency in various programming languages or tools or utilize line charts and pie charts to visualize your contributions to projects. Additionally, features like heatmaps can help display your expertise in specific domains, such as data analysis or machine learning, making your portfolio even more compelling.

One member of our community suggested sharing these AI-generated visualizations on platforms like Reddit to tap into the collective wisdom of the community. Seeking feedback from real people ensures that your visualizations resonate and effectively communicate your message, ultimately increasing your chances of leaving a lasting impression on potential employers.

AI Help for Your AI Use

As we were discussing the importance of adding a personal touch to your job applications, one tool stood out. GPT-3 tools like Gptzero.me have become invaluable assets in maintaining that human connection in today's digital landscape. When you input text into the text box of Gptzero.me, its advanced algorithms analyze your content to determine how much of it "sounds" like it was written by a human. This process allows you to strike the right balance between human authenticity and AI assistance in crafting your cover letters and resumes.

By utilizing GPTZero to review your application materials, you can ensure they resonate with hiring managers on a personal level, a crucial factor in distinguishing yourself from other applicants. Moreover, demonstrating your familiarity with such AI tools during interviews or networking discussions can enhance your candidacy, portraying you as a tech-savvy professional with a deep understanding of the evolving job market dynamics.

This fusion of technology and authenticity not only sets you apart from the competition but also highlights your adaptability and awareness of the contemporary professional landscape.

LinkedIn Learning

Several attendees shared how diving into AI tools has not only made them more competitive in their job searches but has also enhanced their skill sets. LinkedIn emerged as a standout resource, particularly for those in tech-related fields. Its vast array of courses offers a wealth of opportunities to upskill and stay ahead of the curve.

Among these, "Paired Programming with AI" was highlighted as an excellent course to refine programming abilities and learn effective collaboration with AI tools—a highly sought-after skill in today's job market. As artificial intelligence continues to integrate into various industries, mastering these skills is not just beneficial but essential. Enrolling in courses like "Paired Programming with AI" not only boosts technical prowess but also positions you as an adaptable and innovative candidate.

Furthermore, the certifications obtained from completing such courses serve as valuable assets on your resume, grabbing recruiters' attention and showcasing your commitment to professional growth. Whether you're a seasoned professional expanding your skill set or a job seeker striving to stand out, leveraging AI courses on LinkedIn is a strategic move that can unlock exciting new opportunities.

Untapped Job Opportunites

As we were nearing the end of our meeting, an interesting point arose about the potential in small companies and startups, especially regarding fractional support roles. These roles, which require specialized skills on a part-time basis, offer a compelling avenue for people looking to gain valuable experience and make meaningful contributions to growing companies.

While these organizations may not have the resources to support full-time positions, they often require specific expertise to fulfill critical functions. As a job seeker, exploring fractional support roles can be advantageous, as they allow you to leverage your skills and knowledge in a flexible capacity.

By taking on such roles, you not only broaden your professional horizons but also have the opportunity to work closely with passionate teams and contribute to the success of innovative ventures. Additionally, fractional support roles can serve as stepping stones to full-time positions or pave the way for future entrepreneurial endeavors. The possibilities are endless, and you never know where these paths may lead you.

Wrapping up this Tech Career Reboot session, we've explored a plethora of innovative strategies and tools to empower you in your career journey. From harnessing AI to enhance your job search to leveraging platforms like Copilot and other tools to craft personalized and compelling application materials, the possibilities for growth and advancement are boundless. Embracing continuous learning through platforms like LinkedIn and exploring opportunities in small companies and startups, including fractional support roles, can open doors to exciting new possibilities.

Remember, each twist and turn in your career path presents an opportunity for growth and discovery. With the support of our vibrant community and the arsenal of tools at your disposal, there's no challenge too daunting to overcome. So, as you embark on your next career transition, do so with confidence and optimism, knowing that each step forward brings you closer to your goals.

Next time, you could be part of the conversation! Join us on the third Wednesday of every month - our next will be March 20th at 10:30 am. We'd love to see you there! Stay tuned for more details.

As always, feel free to reach out to us at contact@quardev.com. 

 

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