I Want Answers!!!

One of the biggest challenges, being unemployed in this economy, is getting answers. Communication from employers is lacking. Sometimes I heard crickets after sending a resume or making an effort to contact a potential employer…even from people I knew and had interviewed with! Trying to deal with the Unemployment Office or using their website can be infuriating. Trying to find a job today has its share of hurdles but there is some help out there for you. The purpose of my blog is to share my experience and hopefully provide you with some answers and resources.

The U.S. central bank issued its so-called “Beige Book” report on Wednesday – an anecdotal assessment of the overall health of the country’s economy. The U.S. economy “expanded at a modest to moderate pace” from late November into December. Strong retail sales over the Christmas holiday helped. Demand for services also increased too. The problem, though, is that employers are still hesitant to hire new employees and the real estate market, typically slow during the winter, is sluggish. Thankfully the holidays are behind us and employers can focus on the future.

Local business leaders are optimistic and generally believe the Bay Area economy will grow in 2012 and the forecast for the Tampa Bay real estate market is for 7.5% growth, according to the Tampa Bay Times. But without a steady income you may need help to bridge the gap.

The of the government’s largest lenders, Freddie Mac, has announced that they’re again allowing their unemployed borrowers to extend the amount of time that their payments can be suspended or reduced anywhere from six to twelve months. Of course to qualify you likely have to be among the most credit-worthy!

Even though I’m employed again I’m struggling along with you to get back on my feet. By landing a job I feel like I won a battle but the war is still underway.

How will Tampa Bay’s economy fare in 2012? Better, say many

http://www.tampabay.com/news/business/how-will-tampa-bays-economy-fare-in-2012-better-say-many/1209299

Help For Unemployed Homeowners

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/anna-cuevas/freddie-mac-offers-extens_b_1200069.html

US Economy on Mend But Hiring Limited

http://www.voanews.com/english/news/economy-and-business/US-Economy-on-Mend-But-Hiring-Limited-137118493.html

Until next time…keep The Faith!

Corey Dylan

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New Year, Clean Slate, NEW Blog!

That stretch between Thanksgiving and New Year’s is especially hectic so this is the first chance I’ve had to write a new blog in weeks!  With the New Year comes renewed hope that our lives will improve and that employers will start hiring again!

Floridians have a particularly tough road ahead with the real estate market gasping for breath, politicians politicking, and too many still out of work.  This is why I didn’t wait around for a hand out.  In this economy you have to be bold and it’s my intention to keep up the push for more work in the coming year even though I’ve landed a full time job.

In a recent survey conducted by the Tampa Bay Times & Bay News 9, more than ½ of us in the Bay Area expect our economic situation to stay about the same.  Last month they called 508 Bay Area residents to ask them how they felt about their economic prospects and the general feeling I came away with after reading the article: we’re nervous.

See the article:  http://www.tampabay.com/news/humaninterest/article1208244.ece

I was nervous too when I was unemployed at the and of last year but I felt like I had nothing to lose by marketing myself and making as much noise as I could about being unemployed.  Ironically, I had everything to lose; house, car, rental, savings, etc.  I guess when you think losing everything is an option you’re motivated to do everything you can to keep it!  Today I am rebuilding: my career, my savings account, and working hard!

The poll also gave residents a number of what they called “remedies” to the situation and the most popular fox was spending tax dollars and financial incentives to bring more jobs to the Bay Area.  Chances are these won’t be the same jobs you may have worked in the past so it’s crucial to market yourself as someone who can get ANY job done.  Focus on the positive and your strengths.

Governor Scott campaigned for months on the slogan, “Let’s Get Back to Work!”  And he promised those jobs would come soon.  I didn’t have the luxury to wait to see if his plan worked or what it might mean.  Like most Floridians I needed work NOW.  I’ve never been the type that relied on someone else for much of anything.  In part, I got lucky, but it wasn’t without putting myself “out there,” in the right places in and in front of the right people.

I’m reminded of that Will Smith movie, “Happyness,” and I was inspired that when he desperately needed to make money he sought out someone who WAS making money and DID what that guy did.  Be relentless.

If you were put out of work in 2011 you have the chance to start a new job with a clean slate. It’s a great opportunity!  And in this economy “opportunity” is what you’re looking for rather than simply a “job.”  Employers are always conservative when predicting hiring needs but experts are optimistic that they WILL be doing more hiring in the coming year.  And I can say that I’m seeing more and more people that were on the sidelines with me get hired too so stay positive!

I recommend reading my past Blog entries and here are a couple articles that should help you as you continue or start your job search in 2012:

8 Job-related Smart Phone Apps

http://msn.careerbuilder.com/Article/MSN-2850-Job-Info-and-Trends-8-job-related-smartphone-apps/?SiteId=cbmsnhp42850&sc_extcmp=JS_2850_home1

Oddball Interview Questions from 2011

http://www.bizjournals.com/seattle/blog/2011/12/top-25-oddball-job-interview.html

 

Until next time keep the faith!

Corey Dylan

You’re fired. Merry Christmas!

This week’s news was the people that give us the news: The Tampa Tribune and TBO.com reported they were laying off 165 people.  I don’t know why companies lay off workers during the holidays but it hurts to see it, especially in our community that just keeps taking the hits in this Recession.  Among the laid off staffers was 35-year vet and Tribune Media Critic, Walt Belcher. Read more about Mr. Belcher: http://networkedblogs.com/rqCfN
I actually remember a time when people were fired only for “cause.”  These days everyone I know that’s lost their job has been “downsized” or “reduced” due to no fault of their own.  Big brother found someone or some way to do business cheaper and with the stroke of a key orders are given and people are left stunned with the news of their unemployment.  Unfortunately, it’s the world we live in right now and we just have to figure out a way to function in it.

Having very recently been on the unemployment line myself I can’t tell you it’s an easy process.  There are ups and downs and worries and small celebrations.  But what I can tell you is it’s a chance to breathe and reinvent yourself.  Take that moment to breathe and then GO FOR IT.  I kept this Blog during my search and it helped to keep me on track, share my story with those who were in the same situation, and move forward in the most positive way I knew how.  I hope you’ve found it an inspiration and a resource for information that can help you survive your unemployment and land your next job.  I know it meant a lot to me to hear from people that were in the same boat who eventually landed a job!

Perhaps some of my success is due to the fact that I was so vocal about my job loss and very transparent about it by posting the news publicly on all my Social Media profiles.
Today 89% of firms are using Social Media to find candidates, according to Jobvite.  The best time to finesse your  public profiles is before you need to look for that job but if you are looking you must make sure your resume is up to date and your profiles are searchable and visible to employers that may be looking for you.  If you’re not on LinkedIN yet, the site most companies are using to recruit, take the weekend to check it out and see what your competition is doing.  Include your job history since profiles with multiple jobs listed are 12 times more likely to be viewed than those with just one.  Make sure to add a great profile photo too because your click-through rate will increase 7 times!  And don’t forget to add keywords in your summary that are important in your industry so that you’ll come up in employer searches.  I looked to others in my industry to see what they were doing successfully and tried to measure up!
I don’t know how much I believe in “fate” but landing a job at WFLA was probably the best thing that could have happened to me personally and professionally.  AM Tampa Bay is definitely a step up in my career and a chance to do things I’ve never done before!  And with every job I’ve been terminated from I find there’s always something better on the other side of unemployment.  I’m sure there is for you too!  Surround yourself with cheerleaders because you’re going to need them.  Uncertainty isn’t easy and we’re living in hard times but the more quickly you make your new “job” finding your NEXT job you’re going to land it.  Best of luck!!!

Should you give up the work search during the holidays?

It’s been a busy, successful and exciting first week at 970 WFLA. I’m learning a lot in an environment full of creative, supportive and really nice people. Right now I’m learning how to “dance” with two new partners and looking forward to the new challenges that will make me a better broadcaster.

I also want to take the time to again thank everyone who supported my search and congratulated me in landing this great gig. Believe it or not, I’m actually waking up at 3:30am each morning EXCITED to get to work. I’m having a blast and have a renewed love for what I do.

The day after I started at “AM Tampa Bay” word came that applications for unemployment aid dropped to a nine month low. This could be interpreted as a sign that our economy is getting stronger and employers are getting read to step up hiring new employees! I hope so anyway. The unemployment rate has now fallen to 8.6% nationally.

I think a common belief is that the holidays aren’t a good time to look for a job. While it’s true that people take vacations during the months of November and December, new budgets have only recently been set and you can be sure that there will be new hires after the first of the year so send that resume now!

Meanwhile, Congress is still debating whether to extend the benefits program. They’re running out of time to make that decision. If they don’t extend the length of time which you can receive benefits nearly 2 million people will lose them all together (out of the nearly 6.6 million currently getting unemployment).

My advice to you is to keep up the pursuit of your next job, even during this time of year. Make noise while others “take time off” from looking. And GO to those holiday parties where you’ll have a chance to network, meet new people and make new connections. Get business cards and phone numbers and follow up! 75% of new jobs come from a referral. Can you imagine a better time of year to mingle and get that referral? I can’t so go for it! People noticed that I was relentless in pursuit of a new job. They’ll notice if you are too.

Keep The Faith!

Corey Dylan

Let’s Make A Deal!

Though I’m still unemployed, there is an upside to this adventure: I get to meet people doing interesting things and I’m doing things I’ve never done before! This week, I was able to audition for a Guest Host spot on HSN, based here in Tampa Bay. It was terrifying and challenging and the kind of thing that gets your blood pumping. The hallways were crowded with merchandise and amazing looking food…and it was like being on a movie set with a number of different studios down every hall. I practiced my pitch for an entire day before presenting “on camera“ and I’m pretty happy with how I did! It could be weeks or months before I hear back from them but I’m grateful to friends who helped me get my foot in the door. Personal connections and contacts are everything in this economy and auditioning for a job on TV was a great experience!

Late last week I got word from a TV station in Tampa and a radio station in San Francisco that I didn’t get the job(s). Disappointing, but every interview I go to, every Program Director I talk to, gets me closer to that next job. In fact, station #1 in San Francisco didn’t think I was a fit but gave my resume and demo to station #2 down the hall and we had a very positive conversation. They may be looking to make a change in the next month or so! There are jobs opening up out there, one by one.

Unemployment has definitely become a waiting game. I have a few friends in similar situations to mine in the industry and there is a lot of talk of things that “may” happen. I’ve had colleagues call and email telling me there’s something “coming up” that they want to hire me for. But these jobs are slow to materialize. What’s really going on behind the scenes? I don’t know. I know there are job openings out there. It seems, though, that employers are very slow to pull the trigger. Are they waiting until after the holidays? Is there a hiring freeze until the 1st Quarter of 2012? Are they buying time and holding off on spending money until the New Year? Probably. The good news is that I’m seeing many of you reporting new jobs and interviews on Facebook! I’m glad to see that happening before the holidays! And I’m glad I have enough cash to get myself into the next year so that I don’t do anything desperate.

And the big news I’d hoped I could share with you today? I still can’t because a deal is not a deal until all the finer points have been agreed to and the ink is dry. I’ve seen crazy, last minute things happen in this business so I‘m cautiously optimistic. But I can tell you this – I’ve had a couple job offers! I think one, in particular, is a fantastic job opportunity, a great career move for me personally, and I will be very excited to tell you the specifics when the time comes. Until then, I’m still sending out the resumes and talking to all interested parties. You can’t let up when you need a job to pay the bills and you want to work. Until next week, at least, the Champagne is on ice.

Keep The Faith!

Corey Dylan

Companies hiring for the holidays

http://msn.careerbuilder.com/Article/MSN-2800-Job-Search-15-companies-hiring-for-the-holidays/?SiteId=cbmsnmn42800&sc_extcmp=JS_2800_money&ocid=vt_fbmsnmon

Looking for Career advice?

www.asktheheadhunter.com

How To Negotiate For A Better Salary, Even Now

http://www.forbes.com/2009/06/23/jobs-salary-negotiating-leadership-careers-basics.html