Career Coach Office Hours: March 25 2022 |

Career Coach Office Hours: March 25 2022 |

Career Coach Office Hours: March 25 2022 |

I answered questions about #jobsearch #hiringstaff #management #leadership #workplace issues or anything work. Join me at 1 PM Eastern on Tuesdays and Fridays and put your question into chat. You can also email questions to TheBigGameHunter(at) and put the phrase “Office Hours” into the subject line and I will answer it on my next show. #careercoachofficehours #careercoaching #careercoach #jobsearchtips #jobsearchadvice #interviews #hiring #managingpeople #leadershipskills #linkedinlive #linkedinlivestreams

What to Ask Before Starting a New Job

[00:00] Intro and Coffee Toast

[02:51] What would you do if your interviewer says “introduce yourself briefly and clearly which illustrates that you deserve to work here”?

[05:02] What is the simplest way to be calmer, to relax, and to reduce stress?

[06:29] Why did a career counselor say ‘management is “too competitive”‘ before she even had a chance to look at my resume?

[07:58] How do I become a great manager? and What is management?

[10:32] What kinds of questions should I ask a recruiter?

[12:08] Is it better to find a job while you’re already employed?

[16:12] What are your negotiation strategies when asked by the interviewer about what salary you’d like during a job interview?

[17:55] Why did a career counselor recommend customer service before she even saw my resume? [19:09] How do I deal with bullying and harassment in the workplace?

[21:28] Is it bad to reschedule an interview because you mixed up time zones initially?

[22:31] What do you say during a new job interview when your last gig lasted for less than six months

[23:51] After my job interview, should I connect with the recruiter on LinkedIn while I’m waiting for a decision?

[23:58] When recruiting, how valuable are achievements not related to the role?

[26:03] Should I feel bad for withdrawing an offer I accepted if the recruiter misled me to believe that the job is temp-to-perm when the hiring manager actually had no guarantee that I will eventually be converted?

[27:07] Outro

From Paycheck to Purpose

(lightly edited)

What would you do if your interviewer says, “Introduce yourself briefly and clearly, and illustrate that you deserve to work here?” I would pause for a second and politely go. No. So I can introduce myself briefly. And do the “Tell me about yourself” answer. Which Ideally, I’d like to see you connect the dots between the job and your background. So in my case, I might say . . . I’m not going to quite do it that way. I’ll introduce myself to you. My name is Jeff Altman. I’m a career and leadership coach I used to work in search did that for a long time and filled a lot of positions.


I’m an MSW from Fordham did postgraduate training in the Institute of modern psychoanalysis. I’ve helped many people find work and excel in it once they were on board. Why deserve to work here? I don’t know the answer to that question. Because I don’t know what you need, and why you think someone should work here. Because ultimately, you have a need. And if I can help solve it, it’s my pleasure but deserve to work here. I’m not an organ grinders monkey. I’m here to provide support and services to the particular institution where there’s a perceived need that I can resolve. If I’m not the person who can resolve that need. I’m not the right person to hire. So, can we go on to the qualifying questions, please. And if they don’t like that, it’s too effin bad. It’s really that simple. It’s too effin bad, because they’re expecting you to jump through hoops, and dance and beg. Don’t do that. It’s stupid. It’s a stupid question. But it’s where they want to start?  So be it?

Answering Behavioral Interview Questions The Right Way

What’s the simplest way to be calmer? To relax? And to reduce reduce stress?

The answer is meditation. It’s free. Everyone likes that. You can do it in many, many different ways where there’s no right or wrong answer. It’s just an opportunity to slow down, connect with yourself and eliminate stress. You can go on YouTube, and watch meditation tapes, you can use your phone and download apps, any number of them, I’m not going to recommend anyone or anything. My wife is a Buddhist meditation teacher, you can follow your Buddhist meditation practice and reduce your stress. Ultimately, your smart day ask the question, because if you’re not feeling calm or relaxed, you’re overly stressed. That’s not a good place to be so good for you that you want to take this on. And there are many places that you can follow up with this. Okay. Let me just a quick take a quick look. No one on yet. Where the question. So let me go back to the ones I received.

Can Negotiating Salary Backfire?

Why did a career counselor state that maximum was too competitive before she even got a chance to glance at my resume?

There’s a principle called projection. Where people, it’s almost like a movie projector they throw qualities onto you that exist within them that they think exists within you. I know that sounds crazy. But it’s what people do. So she’s projecting these qualities onto you. And she doesn’t know you. She doesn’t know anything about you. She hasn’t looked at your resume. But she’s figured out that it’s too competitive for you. You don’t she doesn’t know that. Ignore her recommendation about it being too competitive. Forget about it, explore what you want. And she may have been trying to let you down gently because she didn’t see that your background fit a management role. So, let it go. She didn’t give you good advice, or was trying to protect you from something, or, like I said, was projecting qualities onto you that exist within her that she finds it too competitive. So as a result, she thought you’d find that super competitive.


How do I become a great manager? A part that’s been in different kinds of situations with different kinds of stress, that allow you to learn and grow. So what makes a great manager? Well, managers are people who get stuff done. As a matter of fact, I’m going to combine this with a question I got a little bit later. What is management? It’s getting people together to accomplish a goal and objectives. It’s involved systems, human interaction, design, producing outcomes from their system. So it involves planning, organizing, staffing, leading, directing, and controlling an organization or effort for the purpose of accomplishing a goal. So how do you be a great manage? It’s not about whether people love you, it’s about whether you get results, the management loves, in doing it in a way that you’re not a slave driver creep. And I say that because too many managers bully people, they push them, they’re obnoxious. They do stuff that causes people to dislike them. And that’s not a good place to be. So I’ll just simply say, be a great manager. You get stuff done. You accomplish it in ways where you’re not grinding people down, but you’re building them up cheering them on, measuring what they’re doing. So this way you  can support them doing what they want to do, which is, frankly, they want to do a good job and get stuff done to right. They are not there to entertain themselves. They’re there to get stuff done. You recognize, learn, get paid all sorts of stuff like that. So how to become a great manager is getting the results done without bullying people.


What kinds of questions shall I ask a recruiter? So I’m going to assume it’s oxygen doesn’t matter if it’s a corporate recruiter or an agency recruiter, but I’m going to start with a corporate recruiter. And just start off by saying, you know, I think he start off by saying, hey, thanks so much for making time to speak with me. I really appreciate it. Could you tell me about the job is used understand that and what I can do to help you do that before they ask anything. So that this way, you’re hearing about the job at the beginning of the interview. So you can talk about what you’ve done that matters to them, and not just talk about what you’ve done. And then from there, as he or she says, So tell me about yourself and what what you’ve done professionally, or walk me through your background. Well, which we’re able to do is start connecting the dots between what they just told you and what your background is. So, to put it very simply, in working with a recruiter, you want to ask them about the job at the beginning of the interview. This is what also be true of an agency recruiter, a contingency recruiter or executive recruiter who’s on a retainer basis. You always want to know about the job at the beginning, and then ask clarifying questions to follow up.


Is it better to find a job while you’re already employed? You betcha. I’ll assume you want to know why. And the answer is, because employers have a bias in favor of people that they don’t think are actively looking. They believe that the best individuals are the ones who are not actively working, or what they call passive job applicants. They believe they’re actually wrong about this. They believe those are better than the ones who were acting than ones who are actively looking. Why? Well, I helped to concoct this ridiculous idea many years ago. And the theory is, the best people never see the job ads that you’re advertising for. They’re the ones who are busy doing their work, they are the ones who are not laid off or fired. Thus, they’re better than the ones who are actively looking. That’s a short version of it. I had a whole speech back in the stone age’s about why this was true, but it isn’t. And the proof of that is these days, instead of applying to a job through an ad, companies are reaching out to people on LinkedIn and elsewhere. And they’re trying to persuade them to change jobs. They don’t know if that person’s actively looking. They found them on LinkedIn, that same person could be actively looking. And the company found them on LinkedIn. So which one are they–an active candidate? They don’t know that a passive candidate is a referred to them. Well, to them, it’s passive, but in reality, they’re active. How does that firm determine that they’re active or passive? So they have that goofy belief, and it’s not true. So I’ll just say, don’t fall for that nonsense. You’re better off always appearing passive, even when you’re active. So it’s better for you because you still have leverage. When you’re working, you can always take something else. So it’s better for you if they believe you’re currently employed.

Is Resigning a Job Bad?

What are your negotiation strategies when asked by an interviewer about what salary you’d like during a job interview? I think the first thing is to laugh and go, What salary I’d like some million dollars, but I’m not worth that. So I’ll just simply ask, what’s the salary range for the roll? They may go, I asked you first. And he was probably going Yes, I asked you second and be playful about it. And they may ask you for a number before they divulge theirs. And whatever you say, in the way of a number, you have to immediately follow up by saying so I know I just answered this. But please understand. I know next to nothing about the job than what was advertised for. I haven’t met my future boss, her from he or she about what their expectations are like what the timeline is like, for getting things done, I haven’t met one of my co workers don’t have a sense of the work environment. So I can give you a salary number now, but I may change my mind later on. So for today, it’s such and such. But as we progress, it may go higher may go a little lower when we check in with one another later on. And they’ll appreciate that. Or they may roll their eyes a little bit, because more and more people are giving them that answer. So don’t don’t allow yourself to get boxed in without that caveat. That causes you to say, I know I said this number, but I’m hedging because I need to know a lot more.


Why did a career counselor recommend customer service before she even saw my resume? I think this career counselor knows the other career counselor I spoke about earlier who described management as being too competitive.So why did they do this? Answer in my mind is I’m not sure if by career counselor, you mean recruiter or a legitimate counselor. However it was the probability is, is that they heard about a role like that, that was available and are trying to persuade you to consider it an interview for him. So, that’s the probable reason. Sometimes there are other reasons that come into play. But, the probability is they saw a job, or they have a job in their office for a customer service person. And they’re trying to see if he’d be open to it. Not smart on their part.

When You’ve Been Made Redundant, Fired, Laid Off, RIF’d

How do I deal with bullying and harassment at work? Well, the first thing is I give my manager an opportunity to solve it for me and solved by by meeting with them and saying, you know, I feel like I’m being bullied here. I feel like I’m being harassed. I’m being jumped on for nonsense, and that isn’t right. So that they’ll then ask you to tell them how you’re being bullied and how you’re being harassed. They’ll probably meet with a team that may or may not start being compliant. is these are adults. They shouldn’t be bullying and harassing someone. But they’re doing it anyway. Bizarre. I know so many. Well, I watch Facebook sometimes. And people get into bullying things where they jump on someone. It’s like a mugging. Four people start getting into an argument with one. And if that’s what you’re experiencing, you talk to your boss. They may try and give you some pacification to justify why it might occur. But, as someone wrote recently, “it’s a pattern of consistent and targeted behavior that the perpetrators know should cause you some stress. It can be accidental or intentional. Most people are the victims of accidental bullying. You know, they get teased, they get cajoled. They make off the cuff critical remarks. They’re awful. And the idea is, I’m not going to say to get into an argument, but I’m going to simply stare them down as a first step. The second step is to speak to your manager and say, “I’m getting bullied. I don’t like what happened.” And you’ll tell them and ask them to resolve it for you.

Should I Confirm an Interview?

Is it bad to reschedule an interview because you mixed up time zones initially? Well, I’ll just say, isn’t bad. It’s not ideal. Bad, like bad boy, bad girl. That’s okay, you made a mistake, and you can email them or message them, and say, I’m so sorry, I didn’t realize you were in Mountain Time. And you were asking for a noon time. And that’s really a 12 o’clock for me. So I’m not available at that time. Would it be possible for us to reschedule? And you’re going to be in Mountain Time again, right? So that’s two hours behind me. And thus, whatever time you tell me, I know, it’s two hours later. So explain why you need to reschedule. What happened that caused you to mix it up.


What do you say during a new job interview, when your last gig lasted for less than six months? The answer is explain why it was for only six months. I was on a contract that was doing a good for someone where they hired me to do such and such a project. And with last five and a half, excuse me, maybe six months, and I was able to get things done in five. So they let me go. Really very simple. Just being matter of fact about it, because they need to trust your answer. And trustworthy people don’t do well. I was on this assignment for five and a half months, . . . and they don’t want to see nervousness on your part. Because they’re gonna think you were lying to you. So convey sincerity. It was designed to be a five and a half or six month assignment. And I got it done in five. So, that’s what happened. Real simple, real direct real to the point. It really will work for you.

Leadership During Times of Extreme Fear

After my job interview, should I connect with the recruiter on actually says with my recruiter on LinkedIn while I’m waiting for a decision? Well, I’ll start by saying the term “my recruiter” . . .  they are not “your recruiter.” Are you paying them anything? No. Okay. How about the recruiter who represented me? That’s a very accurate way. The recruiter something like that. Not my recruiter. So should you contact with connect with them? Yes, by all means, connect with them on LinkedIn while in the pending status. There’s nothing wrong with that. You get access to their network, which becomes a lot more makes your network a lot larger, because most corporate an agency recruits more people in their network than the individuals that they’re considering to hire. So yes, you want me to connect with


How valuable are achievements not related to the role when you’re recruiting someone? Well, it depends. You want to always talk about your successes. In talking about your successes, you want to talk about your track record, and where you were successful previously. Now, as you know, it’s ideal if if the success is related to the job you’re interviewing for. Barring that, you talk about any success, you or someone else has that interacted with you.Do it, use it, don’t hesitate. You know, the idea here is you want to talk about some something as close as possible to what they’re doing. And barring that, you talk about something where you’ve had a success. It all works.

Interviewing for a Contract or Temp Assignment

Should I feel bad about rescinding an acceptance for a position where the recruiter misled me to believe that the job was temp to perm, when the hiring manager actually had no guarantee that you’ll eventually be converted? No, don’t feel bad about it. You’re not prepared to go into one of these situations. And they say that because there’s no guarantee that they will convert you in any time to perm situation. Yeah, third party recruiters can always say, “Hey, you do a great job, you know, should be no problem!” But what about if they don’t have funding for another employee? There is no guarantees in a contract to hire or temp to perm situation where you can be at risk upon completion of the engagement. And they may not be prepared to hire you, through no fault of yours. Remember, there can always be a conversion fee, and they don’t want to pay that conversion site. There can always be we can’t get funding. And thus, you’re out of luck. These are not criteria that reflect badly on you. It reflects on the fact that you aren’t prepared for that risk, because there is that risk in temp to perm situations. Once you’re not comfortable with it, don’t do it. I will agree with you.



Putting Your Resume Together


Jeff Altman, The Big Game HunterJeff Altman, The Big Game Hunter is a coach who worked as a recruiter for what seems like one hundred years. His work involves career coaching, as well as executive job search coaching, job coaching, and interview coaching. He is the host of “No BS Job Search Advice Radio,” the #1 podcast in iTunes for job search with over 2300 episodes.

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