This is the Too Many Trees newsletter, where I share what I’ve been writing and reading in the realm of leadership and personal development. My executive coaching practice is centered around the idea that we are more effective in moving towards our goals when we become more conscious and intentional in focusing our time and attention, and learn how our unconscious patterns are holding us back. If you know somebody that could benefit from my perspective, please forward this to them or let them know they can set up a free intro chat with me.

Tips for job seekers to stand out and get hired

October 08, 2023

It's been a busy week, so I will make my life easier by assembling something from what I've already written. I've shared the same advice with several job seekers recently, pulling together a number of LinkedIn posts to provide my thoughts on job hunting. Rather than keep copy-pasting, I published those thoughts more broadly in a blog post so I can just point people there in the future.

From the blog post:
The main principle I offer is that people don’t hire you because you have a set of skills. They hire you to handle a business issue. If you can show you will create more value for the company than somebody else with similar skills, you are more likely to get the job. ... With that perspective, getting hired becomes a matter of understanding what makes you different than other people applying to the jobs you want, learning to tell that story effectively, and getting your story in front of somebody ready to hire.
Take a look and share what tips have been helpful in your job searches!
And now for the normal personal development content…

LinkedIn: These are ideas that have helped my clients (or myself), and that I share via LinkedIn to help a wider audience, and archive here.
  • Choose the game you want to play. Different people play the promotion game, the people pleasing game, the status game, the capitalism game, or a game of their own. It's easy to start pursuing one of these games to get the immediate rewards, and then forget that it's not all of life - it's just a game that you are choosing to play. If you are feeling stuck, step away from your game, and ask what different game you could be playing.
  • Expand your inputs. After seeing a post listing "the best 14 nonfiction books you should read" where every single book had a white, male author, I reminded people that other people have something to say as well. Don't just recommend the books that everybody else reads - look for opportunities to support those who aren't already successful but have something valuable to say.
  • Help other people tell your story. Whether you're a leader or a person looking for a job, you will be more successful if other people can tell your story. Make it easy for them to do so by clarifying what you want people to say about you, and simplifying it into a few memorable bullet points.
Other articles I found interesting and thought-provoking
  • On the Experience of Being Poor-ish, For People Who Aren't. I'm fortunate that I've always been financially well-off; even when I felt like I was struggling, my basic needs were met. This article shares what the experience is like when you're actually poor; the author's incisive question to tell the difference: "How many times have they turned off your water?” In a similar vein, I've started listening to Jonathan Menjivar's podcast Classy, exploring similar dynamics.
  • A thoughtful discussion of the ways in which people making fun of Trump perpetuate other discriminatory practices, including fat-ism, class-ism (when he puts ketchup on steaks), beauty standards, etc. She points out that "Both class and beauty dynamics are also deeply tied into racism." I appreciated this callout to stick to legitimate reasons to dismiss Trump. I also signed up for the author's newsletter to expand my awareness in this area.
  • The Relativity Theory of Judgment by Karla Starr. "There is no one “right” amount of sensitivity. Not noticing or being bothered by something doesn’t make you tough or a better human being—it just means that it doesn’t affect you, personally." We tend to anchor on our own experience, which is why everybody describes themselves as middle class, even people making $2 million a year, because they see people above them, and people below them, and think they're in the middle. Remembering that everything is relative to your experience expands your compassion.
Thanks for reading! See you in a couple weeks!
Lassen National Park is beautiful
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