Quality resume, solid references, abundant certifications and still can’t find a job in your field? Truth is, it’s probably not a matter of being “good enough” or having the proper letters after your name. So instead of rewriting that cover letter for the 15th time, let’s discuss what will actually help you land the job you want…
Join me as I cover:
- What you’ll need in addition to a great resume…
- How to find positions that actually fit your experience / skills
- Living in the age of the “24/7” interview
- Social media: helpful or hurtful when looking for jobs?
Guys, this episode is just the tip of the iceberg. If you want the go-to guide for all things finding, solidifying and maximizing the job, check out our online course – Valued. This resource will teach you the skills you need to become irreplaceable within your organization.
Not sure when to look for that next job or feeling undervalued in your current one? You’re in the right place… This free webinar will help you get “un-stuck” in your career.
If these tools still aren’t enough, here are a few more great (& FREE) resources:
- E99: Steven Moser: “Getting The Job and Nailing The Interview”
- “How To Get Ahead In Your Career” & other AoC YouTube content
Join Our Coalition Mentoring Program here
Follow me on social media:
Via Instagram: @coach_BrettB
Via Twitter: @coach_BrettB
Subscribe to my YouTube channel here
Brett Bartholomew 00:01
If you’re having trouble getting a job, you’re not special. We’ve all been there, including myself. Nobody has the answer all the time. But you do need to look at these things. And you need to challenge yourself. Because you’re too close to the situation. You are, you’re too close to the situation, you may be kind of falling into some of the Dunning Kruger, we all think we’re a little bit better than we are, we think we are, you know, it’s not just about how good you are, it’s not about the letters after your name.
It is a little bit about visibility, I put out a tweet me on I don’t know, five years ago that, you know, don’t mistake visibility with viability, because that was my way of saying, hey, just because somebody is well known doesn’t mean that they’re actually really good. But it also works the other way, guys, you can be really good. But if you’re not well known to a degree, at least within certain circles, or it’s not distinguishable or obvious to people that have short attention spans, you can’t really, like, you can’t get mad. You can’t, we just live in a different time and it’s very frustrating. I get it. It’s not comfortable for anybody to sell themselves.
Brett Bartholomew 01:11
Welcome to the Art Of Coaching podcast, a show aimed at getting to the core of what it takes to change attitudes, behaviors and outcomes in the weight room, boardroom classroom and everywhere in between. I’m your host, Brett Bartholomew, I’m a performance coach, keynote speaker, and the author of the book Conscious Coaching. But most importantly, I’m a lifelong student interested in all aspects of human behavior, and communication. I want to thank you for joining me. And now let’s dive into today’s episode.
Brett Bartholomew 01:45
Hey, guys, welcome back. Alright, a quick hitter here. This one is going to be all about this common phrase, I can’t find a job in my field, what do I do? And again, this is a quick hitter, we’re gonna give some overarching concepts very digestible, very easy. So if you’re somebody that I just want this question answered now, and I don’t want to wait, and I don’t want to go to another resource. Relax, we got you, right, now. On the other hand, these are going to be overarching principles.
So if you do want that blueprint, and you do want that play by play, we do have an online course that will help you with that. It’s called Valued, and it’s just a starting point. But guys, it will help you it has an opportunity matrix. So if you have several job options are you’re not sure where to go, it’ll help you decide that, it has what’s called a self monitoring assessment, which helps you understand how you’re coming across, whether it’s an interview, during an interview process or another part of it, there are so many different things in value that can help you.
And as I’ve said all the time, almost ad nauseam. Just because I use the term strength and conditioning coach or athlete, these resources are for everybody. We’ve also if you’re new to the show, I’ve done a ton of episodes on everything from how to master the interview process.
Brett Bartholomew 02:53
We’ve done that with Steven Moser, we have stuff on our YouTube channel, how to stand out in your career, of course, in the right way not to just be some flash in the pan. So please, please, please understand that this episode should be a taster. And I’m going to say some things that challenge you. Because we do have a lot of people that tend to reach out coaches and otherwise, that essentially say, you know, some variation of, hey, I can’t get a job. I have no idea what to do, any ideas?
So listen closely, but make sure to also understand this is just one piece of the puzzle. We dive more deeply and we also do mentoring on this because I feel you I’ve been there. Trust me, I’ve been there. So let’s jump right in. The first thing is, all right. I know it’s very easy to hear, somebody’s gonna say well, what about your resume? And guys, I love it and I hate that advice. Of course, you want to look at the low hanging fruit in your resume. And that’s easiest thing to think of is, well, what about your resume? And what about your cover letter? And what about your references? So here this, yes, those things are important.
But I’m also going to tell you to quit getting overly reliant on that, it’s so easy to think that that’s going to be your saving grace. And while a bad resume may lose you the job, a great resume by itself is not going to get you the job. It’s just not, I mean, the research is clear on this, that a lot of resumes, you know, they tend to get glanced over, people are looking for big red flags. And for the ones that even do get picked less than 20% even get an interview, and this is across domains. And that was data from 2015 in the job market.
Brett Bartholomew 04:27
And even then, you know, we’re not even talking about the turnover and fields. So there are so many, especially in my field, strength coaches that are like oh, you know, why can’t I get a job, I have a resume. And then these are the same people that are quote unquote, kind of holding out for pro jobs or college jobs at the highest level and these things, which is good, that’s aspirational, that’s awesome. But just thinking the numbers right, so if you’re not familiar with the professional sports world, the National Football League, there are 32 teams, Major League Baseball, 30. The NBA, 30. National Hockey League, 31. And we’re not even talking about the NRL, we’re not even talking about cricket organizations, we’re not even talking about the others, but just in this highly coveted American sports market, right, that is almost like an entertainment industry.
People look at those numbers 30, 31, 32. And they forget that there are over 100,000 strength coaches just in the United States alone. Right now, you can argue, well, certain people don’t have these certifications. They’re not really a strength coach. Listen, the greater market by and large, doesn’t care, our community cares. Should there be regulations, of course, just like doctors and lawyers and what have you. But the bottom line is, there are unqualified people that get hired for jobs all the time, all the time. And there’s nothing we can do to stop that, there are quacks in every field, it is not unique.
Brett Bartholomew 05:46
But what’s troubling is when people think, Hey, I can’t get a job, yet, they never look at point the thumb at themselves and think, gee whiz, like, I’m only applying for the highest profile jobs. And there’s only 30 teams here and 31 teams here. And there’s, you know, 10s and 1000s, or over 100,000 strength coaches even more than that, if you’re looking around the world, guys, what do you think is really making you special? You know, just to play devil’s advocate within my own field? What do you have a really cool like Excel template? What do you have a really unique way of getting data? What do you have, your PhD? I’m sorry, so do so many other people. And so if you think that, you know, your resume, and all these things are just going to get you there, and you’re going to be able to point to your qualifications and certifications, you have to understand that while our field cares about those things, and they should, and they’re great, it’s phenomenal.
I commend you on your hard work, you are still having to battle the perception of the person that sees all of us the same, you know, and so I always tell people, like, I’m sorry to say this, but what do you truly believe provides you with an edge within somebody that if somebody is looking at your resume that’s already overloaded with candidates, and you know, they’re going to often then turn to social media? Or they’re going to ask their network, you know, maybe they hopefully they go off your references.
Brett Bartholomew 06:58
But what do you really think if you’re honest with yourself, and I’m telling you be honest with yourself, when it comes down to those of you that are just stuck, and you can’t find a job? What do you think that is truly unique about you? What makes you, YOU, absolutely irreplaceable? And how is that evidence?
How are you making that so evident, or easy to understand to somebody that doesn’t even know you? Right, the laziest of people who are maybe looking at your background, or maybe looking at your website for a second. But when people say, hey, my resume is good, and I’ve worked here, and I’m applying to all these jobs, and then they don’t have a website, and their social media page is clouded with, you know, let’s just put it not probably the best representation of their character, their professionalism, their personality, or it’s very vague, it’s maybe just a couple of shots of their family or what have you. It’s, it’s hard, it’s hard to show that you’re really offering something unique.
And we’ve been through this in the past, I’m not saying that you have to have some $10,000 website, and you need to be their social media mogul. But you do need to understand that these things in the digital age still are your greater resume to the world. And what I am saying in concrete, absolute terms, that if you are just expecting your resume to speak for itself, and you are expecting somebody to go through every single resume, and learn almost everything there is about you, and what makes you special off of a piece of paper, and hopefully fingers crossed, hopefully an interview, you’re kind of living in a fantasy land. And I say that with the utmost love, and respect. And I’m almost apologizing. Because again, I don’t want it to seem rude, and I don’t want to seem insincere.
And by the way, while I’m recording this, the most massive spider in the world just crawled across my desk. So if you see me back up, I’m literally trying to like fence this thing. While I’m trying to give this information, so I’m going to try to not lose my spot. So that’s one piece, you know, remember, if you can’t find a job, yes, take a look at your resume.
Brett Bartholomew 08:58
But also, you know, be realistic about the nature of the field itself, you know, be realistic about what you’re looking at doing? And what are you applying to? ow, like, what’s the market you’re trying to address? Right? So and then also make sure the jobs you’re applying for fit your experience and skills. So right after I came out of grad school, I would have been silly to think I was going to get a job in pro sport, or that I was going to get job at some quote unquote, the highest level of what I did. Well, even though I had a master’s degree, and I had a lot of coaching experience more so that is typically common of somebody that was in my position because I was really fortunate to have a lot of experience and get a lot of autonomy within my role.
I still wouldn’t have been a fit, even if I could have led the warm up and wrote the programming and I could have had success even if my skills matched up. The bottom line is I couldn’t have really expected somebody to think yeah, this kid out of grad school, no doubt, right. Same thing if you’ve got a great background and a certain skill set. You know, that’s phenomenal but people also look for people that have been at that level. And now I totally understand the irony.
Brett Bartholomew 10:05
I’ve been turned down for roles in the past where not enough experience in this setting. And I always looked at my wife and would say, Well, how am I supposed to get experience in that setting if nobody will give me an experience in that setting? I get it. And again, that’s, that’s throughout fields, there’s not a ton that you can do about that. That’s where of course networking and social capital comes into place. That’s where you’ve got to look and say, okay, where are the connections, the authentic, true, trust laden connections that I’ve made, and if you’re confused on the term social capital, check out our previous episode on that it’s also laid out in Valued.
But it’s so much different than networking, you have to think about where are you building these connections outside of your field as well? Where are lateral moves that you can get into? Or how can you showcase yourself in a little bit different way? Because the reality is, is there are just some people that even if you’re super qualified, if you haven’t had that stamp of that league, or that level of a or a certain level of organization, they’re not going to hire you, right, you can argue about it, you can whine about it, you can complain about it, it just doesn’t matter, you’re gonna have to play the long game there, you really are. And even if you don’t, if you haven’t been in that kind of a role, but you know, somebody that has, and maybe they can vouch for you, and you can get them a sample of your work.
Brett Bartholomew 11:19
But this is why it’s so critical, in my opinion, and I’m not asking any of you to agree with me. That’s why I do think it is critical to have more than just your resume, it is critical to own your digital real estate, whether that’s social media, or online, because then somebody might even be able to give you the benefit of the doubt. I mean, I’ve been interviewed for performance director positions in pro sports, and I’ve never been a performance director. But the people that talked to me about these roles, said, Hey, we seen what you’ve done, we’ve listened to some of your work, we’ve had friends that have gone your courses and clinics, I’ve expanded the opportunities to meet and get in front of these people, and have kind of two way dialogue.
And that’s what I’m encouraging, look at other avenues where you can get in front of them, but quit thinking that just applying and applying and applying and doing all these things alone is going to be it. Okay, one we’re going to breach over or kind of brush over for now, just because we have a whole podcast on it with Steven Moser is improving your interview skills. Now, I’m not going to cover any of the things that Steven has talked about, because it’s a phenomenal episode, we have podcasts, reflections that go along with it, you should definitely check it out. What I am going to tell you what you can do, you should always be working on communication, both digital and otherwise.
Brett Bartholomew 12:26
So everything you do is going to be a reflection of those skills, guys. The interview now extends beyond that little office, right? You’re being interviewed, if somebody is listening to you on a podcast, you’re being interviewed, if somebody sees something of you online, you’re being interviewed all the time, we live in a 24/7 interview process now. So that’s another thing when people isolate, and they think well, I’m not going to engage and put myself out there in different forms or mediums. I am just going to lean on my experience, I’m proud of what I’ve done, I’m gonna have a great resume. Phenomenal.
And again, that’s a word that worked for decades, that worked for a long time, but it’s not going to work that way anymore. There have been people that had beautiful, beautiful examples of all those things, all the experience, all the references, but digitally just didn’t have good representations. Or maybe they did some kind of podcast and we’ve talked about it before. I’m not immune from this, there have been people that have said, Hey, do you worry about stating that you’ve ever stated your views? So strongly on your podcast? On certain things that might scare off an employer? Well, one no. I mean, I work for myself, right? And, and even if I did find a job, that was something that, you know, was a really unique fit, because we’ve talked about it before even on the weapons so episode with my wife, you know, we don’t want somebody that doesn’t want me as I am, right.
Brett Bartholomew 13:44
And we found that that’s been, that’s helped us in certain situations, there have been people that have said, hey, I’ve listened to your podcast. I like what you stand for. And so I’m not asking you guys, to muzzle yourselves. I’m telling you just to be thoughtful, it’s okay to be challenging in your views. As long as you’re consistent and you’re professional, what’s not okay is throwing a bunch of stuff out there and saying, screw it, you know, people are just going to accept me how I am or not at all right, there’s a fine line, there’s a delicate balance, stand for what you believe in.
But you still always have to remain professional in context, or you have to remain consistent of your behavior in context. But I think that’s another thing that people have to understand. Because remember, there are a lot of things there’s this old joke and we had it on a previous episode, you look at Darth Vader’s resume and there’s a great cartoon of this where it says you know, builds community displays strong leadership skills, you know, commits to project sees them done on time, but you know, that doesn’t mean that they’re a great fit, Darth Vader wouldn’t be a great community manager there’s so many things there but you know, resume is only one part, cover letters one part, right, but there’s another battle and you’re being interviewed all the time, whether you like it or not.
Brett Bartholomew 14:55
Another thing is, you know, continually think outside the box within competitive landscape here. You know, you have to understand that if you’re really coveting a certain role, chances are 1,000s, or at least hundreds of other people are coveting that as well. So not only do you have to go back and think about what really, really, really separates you there, but think through what would the average person be saying on a resume? So many people tailor their resume to these positions, because they’re really trying to catch the eye of an employer.
And we’ve talked about this in the past, your resume is not about you. It’s about them, how much do you really know about the problems they’re trying to solve? So many folks out there are writing standard resume templates that basically say the same thing in the same ways. And they’ve done very little research on the problems that their employers actually facing. Instead of the person writing the resumes trying to just seem perfect in general, for a job like that, or a position like that. Guys, do your research, figure out what that company has struggled with, look up news articles on a media articles, find out how their leadership speaks, there’s typically an internal nomenclature. And this isn’t manipulative. This is you doing your due diligence, because if you did get that job, you would need to become familiar with all those things anyway.
So in my opinion, if you’re really wanting a job for the right reasons, you should be already very familiar with these people, no different than a doctor with their patient. I don’t wait until they get in the room to learn about their medical history, right? Like, chances are I’ve looked at their chart, I reviewed some things that they filled out beforehand. Of course, we all know there’s doctors that don’t do that. But you guys get what I’m getting at here is you need to make sure you understand the situation, thinking outside the box and make everything you do not look like everybody else’s. And we forget that we get so caught up in our own little world. And that’s just what makes your resume and everything else just look like an absolute blurb.
Brett Bartholomew 16:45
Okay, the other piece and it already ingrained with the interview process, whether you like it or not, you have to make sure your social media profiles look professional and just are, it doesn’t mean you can’t write things and include things about your family and your thoughts on other topics. But guys, listen, you don’t need me to sit here and say this. If you think that all of a sudden, you know, you put something cute or witty or or you know that that could be borderline inappropriate. And I know that’s in the eyes of the beholder. You know, you can say anything in today’s day and age and offend somebody. But, you know, right, it kind of does it pass the beep test.
If you were somebody looking to hire somebody, and you saw something that was contentious, you don’t want distractions on your team, you just don’t, you don’t want distractions, and you don’t want inconsistent personalities and behavior. So it’s okay, if you’re a little bit of a spark plug, it’s okay. If you’re, you know, you describe yourself another way, but at least be consistent, at least be consistent. So these people know what they’re getting. And again, it comes across, this is what makes me unique, this is the thing that I really lock into. And you know that helps me.
Brett Bartholomew 17:49
Another piece, and we talked about this in the passion paradox episode we talked about in so many places, guys, drop the hole, do what you’re passionate about thing, please. You know, just because you’re passionate about something, and I’ve almost said this so many times, I’m scared of running off my current audience. You being passionate about something does not mean you should make it a job, you just shouldn’t. Following your passion is not the best strategy when it comes to job markets, you know, saying there’s only one job and one position and one role and, and one market, you know that could make you happy is like saying you really only believe that there’s one person out there who could possibly be your quote, unquote, soulmate.
And heaven forbid, you know, even for those of you and I’m happily married, there’s many, there’s tons of you that are happily married. I know you love your spouse and you love your significant other and they’re their most special thing, but heaven forbid, something happened to you or them or, of course, we would want them to move on and be happy and find happy, happiness somewhere else. And as much as we wouldn’t want to believe it. That’s possible. That’s possible.
It’s a big world over 7 billion people. So when people say no, there’s only one job and I’m committed to this. I love the comp-,I love the passion, I love the tenacity, but it is misguided. You cannot be anything you want to be in this world. But you can be more of what you are already very good at. Now, does that mean that I’m saying that you should just you know, I’m crushing your dreams. Brett, I don’t agree. I think anybody can be anything they want to be. We could debate about that all day long. And this isn’t the episode to do that. But what I’m saying is if you’re really struggling to pay the bills, if you’re really struggling put your significant other in a tough spot. If you’re unhappy, guys, get another job right now, find something else to do. There’s so many other jobs that build ancillary skill sets. It’s not like if you pivot and take a job in another market now, you’re screwed. And I know there are people that will Hey, I was told if I get out of the field, No.
Brett Bartholomew 19:48
There are so many people that get out of coaching and go into something else and then that experience makes them better and then all of a sudden they’re a general manager. They’re pro athletes that do this guys. They’re a pro athletes that, you know, all they knew was Sports, they didn’t have experience in anything else. And now they have a wide world of opportunities. And you could say, well, they’re a millionaire. And they’ve got, you know, so many different connections. Alright? How many excuses Do you want to make for yourself?
All right, I challenge you on the opposite. Let’s say, you are absolutely hurting to pay the bills, you’re miserable, you haven’t found a job and so long, your life stressful, give me a good argument of why you should keep selfishly going down that route in a market that’s oversaturated. overcrowded. And you haven’t had any luck worth yet. Right? Like, make sure that you can handle the base needs, get your mind, right, reinvent a strategy there and then go, you might meet people in different situations that can connect you in so many different places, I can’t tell you the amount of times that I’ve met people in the business world or the finance world, or something else that knew somebody else and got me a connection with somebody that helped with another project. It’s just like, when we train athletes, we talk about diversity of, of movement skills, diversity of training methods, yet again, in my profession, strength and conditioning, so many people isolate, I need this job, I’m only going to put myself around this many people, I’m only gonna learn these skills. And that’s fine. But then you have yourself to blame. Okay.
Brett Bartholomew 21:12
Another thing is let history be your guide. Look at the past feedback you’ve gotten from employers, friends, family members, what do people come to you and ask you about constantly? What what kind of problems do others ask you to solve for them? Right? All these things are feedback. You know, and I know feedback can be uncomfortable. And I know, you know, but there’s certain things that people ask you to do for them all the time that lend insight, probably into the kind of job you should be looking for. Now, this doesn’t count if you’re the shirtless, bro, that is always talking about working out. And because you literally, you know, rub it in people’s face, that you love working out 24/7 that they’re going to come to you for workout stuff. But, you know, again, what do people pay for this and people pay you often as, so don’t just look at well, I love it so much, I do it for free. That’s not a job. That’s a hobby. That’s great if that becomes your job.
But guys, you know, you have to be wary that people that say, you know, do it for free, or just follow your passion usually already have a lot of money or have achieved a lot of success. Alright, and I know that can sound really rude. I’m just trying to be pragmatic here. I’m okay, if this episode, you know, really kind of fires you up a little bit. What I’m telling you is you have to be pragmatic, don’t just turn a hobby into a profession.
Brett Bartholomew 22:29
Don’t think that this mythical 10,000 hours of deliberate practice means that you’re not going to have any struggles and roadblocks because you can be good at something, but still not know how to maneuver the crowded market. And that’s so often what happens you have a skill set, but you’re still in an oversaturated market, there’s a demand and supply issue. Right? There’s very little demand because there’s so many other people, and you have to think about what really makes you special.
And at the end of the day, that’s it you have to think of yourself like an invention. If you were going to patent an invention, you’re going to have to prove in a court of law, that you have a unique product or a unique delivery method or a unique user experience and not unique like you think it’s unique, unique as in you can prove it does not exist out there in another capacity or yours is so distinctive, that you know there’s no confusion in the market. And you don’t think that’s hard guys tried trademarking something, try it, go through the trademarking process, it’s amazing, you learn why a toothpaste company calls itself crest, because that’s such an ambiguous term that you know, now, you know, if they just call themselves white smile, or if they call themselves sparkle, teeth, whatever, that stuff wouldn’t even pass in most trademark offices, it just wouldn’t, not the registered trademark, not the federal trademark.
Brett Bartholomew 23:45
So when you think of your skill set, like an invention, it becomes more Oh, I get it, like 1,000s millions of people submit for inventions and patents every day. And they don’t get it because it’s too similar while you’re doing the same thing in the job market. So I appreciate all of you. I certainly respect you. I’m not trying to be rude. I’m just trying to give you a wake up call. If you’re having trouble getting a job. You’re not special. We’ve all been there, including myself. Nobody has the answer all the time. But you do need to look at these things and you need to challenge yourself, because you’re too close to the situation, you are. You’re too close to the situation.
You may be kind of falling into some of the Dunning Kruger. We all think we’re a little bit better than we are, we think we, you know, it’s not just about how good you are. It’s not about the letters after your name. It is a little bit about visibility. I put out a tweet, man, I don’t know five years ago that, you know, don’t mistake visibility with viability, because that was my way of saying hey, just because somebody is well known doesn’t mean that they’re actually really good. But it also works the other way guys, you can be really good. But if you’re not well known to a degree, at least within certain circles or it’s not distinguishable or obvious to people that have short attention spans. You can’t really like, you can’t get mad. You can’t, we just live in a different time and it’s very frustrating.
Brett Bartholomew 25:00
I get it. It’s not comfortable for anybody to sell themselves. Listen if you want more on this, check out episodes on interview skills with Steven Moser, check out our YouTube channel we have things like how to, you know, get ahead in your career if you’re a strength coach and you’re still struggling with this, we have free YouTube videos the realities of becoming a strength coach, all this stuff you’re not alone. I know this may make you mad and you’re like, well I want answers now. I’m giving you them, you just have to ask yourself if you’re listening, you have to go back and do the hard work, if you do want a playbook and you said hey, you know I actually have the opposite problem I’m getting jobs and I don’t know which ones to take and and all these pieces all right, well you know, now think about you know, the opportunity matrix and everything we talked about in Valued which you can find on artofcoaching.com.
I hope this helps. I hope this challenges some of your assumptions. Again, please, please, please never think that a resume is enough or that passing your business cards out is enough. They’re not, they’re not enough guys, I promise. I’m sorry, but I just want to give you the truth.
Until next time, Art Of Coaching podcast, talk to you soon.
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