EP 1475 On this show, Jeff Altman, The Big Game Hunter speaks with career coach Marc Miller about changing careers and how people can figure out how to get going and land in something they love.

Changing Careers | No BS Job Search Advice Radio

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battery this is Mobius job search advice
radio episode 1475 I'm Jeff Alton the
big game hunter and welcome welcome to
another episode it's Sunday weekend I'm
not gonna release a show tomorrow well
that's all just enjoy ourselves from
once instead of always punching hard and
trying to do more work and today's show
well it's not an honoring flow for
veterans it's really an honoring show
for those of you who are thinking of
changing careers and it's an interview I
did with Mark Miller of career pivot but
actually it's his podcasters career
pivot and I believe the website is the
same as well for pivot com mark at the
time I interviewed him was living in
Texas he's now in Mexico practicing some
of the things that he wanted to do in
and still work but live in a place where
he and his wife wanted to live and
today's show is really zeroing in on
what he does career change and it's a
good interview that we did several years
hope you find it helpful hope you give
it a great review listen you may learn
something from this one it's about 30
some odd minutes in length you know you
got time during the day today you're off
right so I hope you find it helpful and
let's get going and I've spoken to many
people who frankly their careers have
left them and also people who have found
that they wanted to leave their long
standing career so I thought it'd be a
great opportunity to do with so about
changing careers and the kind of things
that a person should do in
were to make a career change so my guest
today is Mark Miller who's the hair head
of career pivot dot-com
he's an author on the subject as well
and I thought he'd be able to provide us
with some great advice about career
changing Mark Miller welcome to job
search radio great to have you on board
thank you Jeff great to be with you
thank you you know I was doing some prep
for the show and I was looking at your
bio on the website book you look like a
poster child for the career changer that
you're probably helping professionally
why did you decide to change careers
what happened to you they prompted you
to make some of the changes you've made
well I've joke I'm on my seventh career
so I there are some people claim that I
can't hold his job but what the reality
is if I get bored easily every three to
five years
I would I would want to make a change
now I started my career back in the days
and in the early 1970s when companies
like you to be this well rounded
generalist they'd like you to make
transitions and and so I kind of bounced
around a lot from being a programmer to
being an engineer to being in marketing
and sales to being in training I went
off and we brought two high school math
late in my career I did nonprofit
fundraising and then I started career
pivot back in 2011 primarily because I
saw more of my friends all in their 50s
and 60s being wiped out in these last
two recessions and knowing that they
wouldn't be able to retire and many of
them were seeing their industries and
jobs completely go away and I seem to
kind of do this was kind of an ease so
the answer comes down to is I do it
because I like doing it I like the
variety and it sounds like what you did
ultimately was physician heal myself
you started working on yourself to make
another change and in doing so created a
business where you're able to help
others so it must be hard to suddenly
wake up one day I saw that you'd work
for IBM for a long time and discover
it's time to move on I don't know if it
was voluntary or forced but you know a
lot of Americans a lot of people around
the world have been experiencing issues
with their employers waking up one day
and saying you know we don't really need
the Susan Joe or shall Indra anymore
it's time to move on and go in a
different direction again it's looking
at your background it sounds like that's
what your experience is so in looking at
yourself and some of the people that you
how does someone start off this
evaluation process or start the process
of moving into a different field yeah
it's rather interesting I joke that I
was raised by my pet by my parents to be
an employee to go work for a father-like
company that would take care of me and
then I would be able to work for 30 and
4 years and retire into the sunset which
we all know that didn't happen doesn't
they moved my cheese and the reality is
most of us have been very reactive in
our careers rather than being proactive
so when I when IBM changed their pension
plan back in the late 90s and I went oh
I don't trust you anymore and I left now
that was highly unusual I've been
referred to and within IBM as the IBM
Underground Railroad I helped people get
out because people still keep on trying
to hang on well I can make to it one
more layoffs and so the process I've
kind of laid out is is a five-step
process and the first one is know
most of us throughout our career we kind
of forgotten who we are we've acquired a
lot of skills that are
lawyers want us to acquire and they by
the way they pay us for them but reality
is we've forgotten after 20 or 30 years
what makes this happen what makes us
really good why did it happen how does
someone get to know themselves yeah for
many people I think they forget after a
while what their core is yeah how do we
start to relearn who we are well I do
two things number one I've done a lot of
assessments the one I really really
liked was the Burkman which has been
around since the 1950s
vir kan yes Burkman calm I just it
picked me apart it will tell me number
one how I appear which is what
myers-briggs and disk will tell you but
it will also tell you how I want to be
treated and is when those how I appear
and how I want to be intreated get
really out of kilter so I use the
example I've gotten I got a client who I
refer to as my structured 'anarchist he
appears very very orderly he's done that
because he got into finance he's been a
CFO very orderly the problem is it just
has to be his order rule based I can
tell well the point is where he's really
good at is walking into chaos and
creating order out of chaos but no one
ever places him there because he's so
orderly and one of the things I've got
him to realize is he now goes ask for I
want to go there where it's chaos I
wanted to build the systems he would
have never done that before that was
clearly shown the other piece is go back
and look at your career and when have
you been the happiest when did you have
a boss that you really liked why when
did they make you when did you feel
really valued at work what the heck did
they do and by the way it's mostly
it's not money you know when did you
have a team you really enjoyed when was
the makeup of that team when did you
have the right amount of activity and
believe it or not this makes a whole lot
more has more effect on your happiness
than anything else is I can't fit behind
a desk but when I went off until high
school math I was happy I was on my feet
all day I'm gonna interrupt you here for
a second disc I want to make sure
everyone gets the idea that you're
talking about where you've been
successful early in your life and where
you had real joy and happiness and
you're working in your environment where
your successes were where they weren't
and trying to start from that benchmark
place of identifying now for some folks
obviously they may be earlier in their
career so I don't want anyone to think
that this show is only for the older
workforce this is true of less
experienced people as well but they have
the opportunity to do that kind of
reflection as well am i right yes in
fact I'm working with a client who's 30
years old right now she's been working
for about ten years and she knows when
things have been good what have been bad
this is particularly true with the
Millennials of the gin wires or changing
jobs every year to two years there
they're seeing a greater variety and an
opportunity by the way to screw up and
walk into situations that are not to
their liking and what do you learn from
that well normally what I would say to
someone is identify that which you don't
care for in these particular situations
identify what the problem areas were and
then flip them to the other side to see
what the polar opposite would be now
often people are uncomfortable with that
but we can start working to get more
toward the middle place
where they can find satisfaction and
happiness once they've explored the two
extremes again not sure if that's part
of your methodology but I know when I've
come to people that's one of the things
I do yep now the second step is to build
your tribe your tribe if you think about
it there is we have we are able to
maintain about a maximum about a hundred
and fifty relationships in our lives
this has been proved over and over again
and I call your tribe is those people
that you can go to who if you asked a
favor it would likely be granted so
who's in your truck now in every career
transition I've made I've made I've
called them half step career transitions
I had one foot in the old world one foot
in the new world and there was always a
relationship that took me across in
other words I never it is alone so by
reaching out to other people they didn't
necessarily pave the way but they could
answer a lot of the questions about the
environment that you were considering
stepping into they could help me but
more importantly it almost always
required someone taking even a small bit
of risk to help me get across no it was
a relationship that that helped me might
have been an introduction it may have
been someone who hired me because they
knew me from a past life or from a past
career it was always there was always
there was always a helping hand and
interesting I want to explore that a
little bit further but I will also want
to get my audience the job search
insider tip of the shot so bear with me
for a second and folks let me just
simply tell you that we
and recruiters whether corporate
recruiters or third-party recruiters
evaluate candidates there has been a
methodology that's been created that
active job applicants that is people
aggressively looking for a position or
not is good there are the lower status
than those who are considered passive
job applicants now why that is is
ridiculous so I'm not going to go into
that but I want to talk with you about
how to create the appearance of being a
passive person rather than being active
because if you're going to be looking
for work you want to take advantage of
this bias and kind of create the
impression as though you are passive so
step number one is make sure your
LinkedIn profile is keyword Laden in the
language of the kind of jobs that you
want to work working not sure what that
language is but with some job boards
take a look at some corporate ads see
the language that they use and stop
looking for the repeat patterns in that
language once you see the repeat
patterns start working that into
building thin profile because that's
obviously what firms are searching for
so that's the first step the second step
is if you are going to post your resume
make sure you do not include your name
address phone number on it but instead
use what's called a blind resume that is
one that might have a unique email
address for that particular job board
that forwards to your address so this
way they can't see your name develop
that association they think they're
going to find you in some way on a job
board or or of job or by LinkedIn and
you're hiding from the fact that you're
out looking so take those two steps to
take advantage of that bias and you're
going to start the notice that employers
and third-party recruiters are going to
be more excited to be contact
you about finding positions so I hope
you find that helpful I have a lot more
on my website which is the big game
hunter on us so there are videos
podcasts articles I've written you can
receive a complimentary subscription to
my easing there there's plenty of
material there to help you with job
hunting so come over to the big game
hunter dot us and go explore now let's
come back to mark and pick up her
conversation about tribes and you were
saying that people have had to take a a
risk with you whether that was in
providing the introduction or for that
matter in ultimately in hiring you why
do you think they took that risk well
cuz they already knew who I was
knew my values and knew my skills and
we're willing to allow me to make that
transition no but I didn't walk in with
everything that was required and in fact
I'm writing a blog post here in the next
week or so on on career transitions
between industries it's willing to have
just enough have enough skill to allow
people to change and someone's going to
have to cut take a little bit of risk
and if something raises my subject I'm
sorry for interrupting or saying I'm
sorry it certainly raises as a subject
there's been an article I'd seen in the
Wall Street Journal for about seven
years running it said that 20 percent of
all positions are filled by people who
don't fit the job requirement but
someone likes them but is willing to
give them a chance right and and the key
piece there is is yes it's it's someone
who probably already knows you we live
in a referral economy and so I call it
build that referral network where you
want to be beautiful which right into
the next step which is the network
strategically before we go these two
were length I was going to ask you how
do you find the members of your tribe
to to network with strategically let's
combine the two in there with that
question well at the point here it is is
one of the things you want to do is you
want to look at your tribe and one of
the key ones is you want a certain
number of connectors in your tribe there
was a very good podcast by the Harvard
Business Review talking about five to
ten percent of your tribe should be
connectors and those are the people who
like to make they like making
introductions they do it because it's
they know a lot of people and they enjoy
helping people so one of the things I
did when I started my business as I
looked around at my tribe and said you
know what I don't have enough
salespeople here in Austin Texas where I
live so I am purposely look started
looking to meet salespeople and I happen
to belong to a couple different groups
and I specifically went out in network
for those the other piece is to if you
want to target a specific company you
can get on LinkedIn look at who do you
need to meet within that company and
then start looking in your networking
and your within your tribe and say who
is who can make me an introduction who
can make a warm lead the sales and
you're the product so this is all about
strategically working through your shot
tribe and through your network to meet
the people that you need to me and one
of the fun ways people can start to
figure out strategically who to reach
out to and who can provide the
introduction again going back to
LinkedIn which is such a valuable
resource but most people kind of use it
like now I need to be connected with
so-and-so I want to connect with
so-and-so and it's very one directional
there's a couple of fun things that
people could do including
go to the company page for the firm that
you want to connect with or get an
introduction to and then in the current
version of will until the right-hand
side you'll see people who are already
currently in your network who work for
that firm now they can be first set or
second connections
I don't recall official third level
connections there but that becomes a way
that you can quickly identify who it is
you know who works for that firm and
then you can start working in your
network to see if they can provide
introductions to the right person if
they aren't that individual
are there other techniques that you
recommend well one other thing is
interesting with so many companies being
remote one of the things I do is go to
the company page go do exactly you said
look to see who in that company and then
dash off into advanced search and enter
your zip code and see how many of those
people in who work for that company are
actually in in your city I find very
commonly particularly here in Austin
there are a lot of companies here that
have employees here and they're not
located anywhere in this out there you
know they're up in there in California
or Washington but they may have 20 30 40
100 employees here and you'd never know
that because they don't and many of them
don't even have a physical presence here
they don't have an office that's a great
thing right
it was here and so the other way is to
use you know well the other common one I
have a client who has a Latin American
connection and we just went in entered
our zip code into advanced search and in
the in the title field enter Latin
America and says to see who had flat in
America or Latin American in their type
job title another word for a nest
in case you might use LATAM Li tal
that's right you try various different
variations and see what comes up I have
a client right now who's interested in
software is a service companies and
we've just in the keyword we type in
Fast SaaS and we came up with a number
of different companies that we had no
idea we're here and so it's getting
creative particularly because companies
very often don't have their where their
employees is not where they have
locations now the other piece is acting
on facts and not assumptions just like
well so Intel company doesn't have an
office in my town well you don't know
that the other example is I went off to
teach high school math back in 2004 and
I assumed I was going to take the school
districts health insurance well he
helped learn the hard way huh it was my
out-of-pocket expense was double my
Cobra payment because I just assumed the
answer is never assumed so here you're
talking about making sure whether you're
doing the evaluation of the next
situation that it meets some of your
expectations and in your case because
you've worked in corporate America for
so long you had no idea how benefits had
worked in the public sector and in your
case in the school system you were you
were in it was far more expensive I
think he told me this the other day it
was far more expensive to use their
insurance than was for COBRA coverage so
it's important to investigate some of
the minutiae
this could explode on you in the wrong
way that's right and and the easiest way
of doing this is reach out to people who
are currently working at the business
and reach out to people who have left
the business and find out why they left
now I call this asking for air you ask
for advice insights and recommendations
by the way when you ask for advice
people rarely turn you down it's a
compliment you asked for the insights
but more important you ask for the
recommendations who should I talk to
next can you introduce me to someone
what should I do
and the whole piece here is when you do
that by the way you take an interest in
them by the way when you take an
interest in them you are more likeable
by the way people hire people they like
and you're asking people to do something
that's very difficult in US culture and
I did this as a job search tip one or
two shows ago practice asking for help
right escaping I want to help and we
find it so hard to ask for help
yes well I'm a guy I don't like asking
for directions so particularly make
career transitions where you're not
going to be the expert anymore yeah
you're gonna have to eat a little humble
pie when I went off to teach high school
math I ended up teaching Algebra one
algebra - I had a great Algebra one
mentor I was lost teaching algebra - I
eventually found another teacher who was
about was old enough to be her father
and I said can I have your lesson plans
please and when I did for an entire year
was I picked up her lesson plans and I
stayed two days behind her so I didn't
understand I could always go in and
watch her
I played humble
and sometimes you need to do that
absolutely because anyone changing
careers at this point where they're
forced or voluntary you stop being the
expert at what you're doing they're back
to being the student again and even if
you've been doing some of the work that
you've been doing part-time or as a
hobbyist now people are paying you and
you want more people to be paying for
their expertise you need to learn you
need to be a student again best of all
in doing so what I interpret that
relationship with that teacher to be is
like a mentor-mentee relationship where
that other teacher was mentoring you in
that particular class so that in this
way you could wind up following a her
footsteps following his footsteps on
really if you mentioned the gender there
and learning from men and then bringing
it to your own classroom as opposed to
learning by the seat of the pants right
yep and the key piece here is most of us
make these transitions very often this
is like walking off a cliff you can be
pushed laid off and be forced into it
too you can walk up to the cliff look
over take a step back and go geronimo or
three you can actually go okay I see it
coming I'm gonna prepare and I'm going
to parachute and I'm going to I'm going
to carefully plan this out I currently
have a couple of clients at a major drug
company and like many of the drug
companies are all kind of collapsing
because they have lots of patents
expiring so we're planning out 18 months
of two-year plans for them to leave now
very likely both of them will end up
being consultants so they're planning
out the answer to that transition now if
if a hand-raising comes along or a layup
occurs they're prepared they've already
got things in the works
they've already been talking to people
so it's kind
claiming it out - when you move on your
terms and not on their terms you hit on
something through that's very important
that folks you may be past this stage
but I know a lot of my listeners are
thinking about making the job change and
haven't really taken taken the first
step or hasn't had taken for them yet if
you know what I mean
and that is you know there are signals
that firms give if you read a newspaper
and you saw and just use the example the
drug companies you know when the
Affordable Care Act was being passed
there's a lot of information that said
if you're in the drug business
reimbursements are going to be cut if
you're working for a hospital the amount
of reimbursements can because what's the
result of that less income for the
institution less need for people because
they can't afford to run at a deficit
for very alone right it's not
shareholders that report - don't be
blind to the news that's out there be
aware and ask yourself the question if
this is true and if this happens how
might that affect be doesn't guarantee
that it will affect you because
obviously you could be the one person
saved but you don't want to be foolish
should be caught completely blindsided
by someone who says can I see in my
office for a second and we all know what
that means so we are we are seeing more
disruptive technology today than we've
ever seen before and particularly this
is what if you are a specialist will
your specialty be around in ten years
and that's a question that you need to
ask yourself think about it if you were
if you're in facebook marketing right
now will face book marketing be around
in ten years I don't know it wasn't here
ten years ago there are people who
always thought Microsoft would be top
and they're in the process of
reinventing themselves yet again so you
can't make the assumption that because
you're doing it now there's a career
forever I think my favorite current
example of this that I see on the
horizon is for people who are truck
drivers or might be cab drivers you know
just be aware the technology has
surfaced already and will get better for
driverless vehicles now Google the
Google car is an example of a driverless
vehicle is it perfect yet no but no
one's asking it to deliver things yet
but people could be when the alleged
wheel of one which is really there was a
safety precaution boys are marvel at the
fact that this car takes people
someplace it will happen maybe not in my
maybe later in your child's life time be
aware the changes are coming make no
assumptions they are on the horizon and
may affect you too so mark this is
terrific I want to make sure I have
everything summarized for for my
listeners so I heard you talk about
initially becoming aware of yourself and
what your needs are where you were
happiest where you weren't happy and far
to recreate those in your life then
start to build your tribe you know that
is the people with whom you're in a
relationship with and networks
strategically now I actually missed my I
despise my notes and that is make no
assumptions make no assumptions about
what the outcome is what's going to be
offered to you what the benefits are
like and you give that great example of
health insurance coverage when you were
a teacher and discovering that'll really
so make no assumptions explore the
details there and the hardwood for
everyone to hear but it is critical
making sure that you asked for advices
on my help so that's the day you show I
hope you found it helpful and if you did
here are a few more ways to get more
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ends 5:29 19


JeffAltman, The Big Game Hunter
JeffAltman, The Big Game Hunter

Jeff 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, and interview coaching. He is the host of “No BS Job Search Advice Radio,” the #1 podcast in iTunes for job search with more than 2100 episodes.

Are you interested in 1:1 coaching, interview coaching, advice about networking more effectively, how to negotiate your offer or leadership coaching? Schedule a discovery call at my website, www.TheBigGameHunter.us

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