EditorialsBy Matt Bud, Chairman, The FENG

Is procrastination beneficial?

From our daily member newsletter on May 30, 2018

As it has been said, never put off until tomorrow that which you can do today. Of all the things one can buy with money, time is not one of them. For those who “walk among us” who are thinking that the time is not far off when they might have to look for another job, I would suggest that the time is now. If you are relatively secure and fat and happy in your current job, this is not the time to call 100 recruiters and send out your resume unsolicited to the Fortune 500. It is, however, a time for preparation. As we know in The FENG, or at least I hope we know, ALL JOBS ARE TEMPORARY. [ Read more… ]

Moving down market

From our daily member newsletter on May 23, 2018

I have often been heard to say that it’s always better to be working. Being overqualified for most of the jobs published out in the world can be a little unsettling. But, I think you just have to accept it as a fact of life that once you have 20-30 years of work experience, you have probably done everything at least once. The new and exciting part of your work life is now in doing the same things you have done before, but with different people and in different companies. The model that most of us have in our minds is based on our experience. (What else could it be based on?) The experience for many of us baby boomers [ Read more… ]

The problem with falling overboard

From our daily member newsletter on April 12, 2018

As the sailing season begins here in Connecticut my thoughts more and more turn to sailing stories and how they might apply to job search and the management of your career. (Of course, I think about and read sailing stories all the time, but I digress.) One of the great perils of sailing is falling overboard. I have 3 rules when sailing: 1. Don’t fall overboard 2. Don’t fall overboard 3. Don’t fall overboard To ensure that this doesn’t happens, especially when sailing at night, I always wear a lifejacket when underway and at night I always clip on. I also clip on when the wind pipes up. No exceptions. These are also the rules for the crew at night. [ Read more… ]

Are you ready to retire?

From our daily member newsletter on April 8, 2018

I don’t know about you, but at the age of 71, I still have more than a few miles left on my odometer. The thought of retirement is still something far off into the future. I imagine I will get to that point in my thinking someday, but it isn’t now. When members call me for advice, I always ask them how old they are. Lucky thing I’m not working for a corporation or I would probably get sued. That said, the reason I ask someone’s age is not to discriminate against them, but rather to give them better strategies. When I was in my youth in the 1960’s I suppose we thought the “old folks” didn’t know much about [ Read more… ]

Corporate thinking – a gentle version

From our daily member newsletter on March 13, 2018

It continues to be my observation of our members that for the most part we tend to move from large companies to small. Part of the reason is that we have no choice. Large companies generally speaking don’t hire senior executives from the outside. They try to grow their own. In any case, that leaves many of us from large corporations carrying the “burden” of perhaps several decades of experience in the ways of large corporations. I say burden because we only know what we know. Although the many tools we have learned in large corporations have their applicability, it is often difficult to know how to apply them in a smaller environment. A 5-year strategic plan, for example, simply [ Read more… ]

Square pegs for round holes

From our daily member newsletter on March 7, 2018

As someone who always suggested to his children that a pair of scissors would be a good tool for putting together jigsaw puzzles, perhaps I am not the right person to be constantly preaching about “qualified members only.” Still, having the SPECIFIC experience for a particular job posting is, generally speaking, the best situation for any job applicant. The reason is that you can’t easily talk to a job posting. When reviewing resumes against a position description, about 50% goes to location, 25% goes to industry background, and the remaining amount is a subjective judgment of your technical skills. So, what’s a person to do if they are the puzzle piece that doesn’t quite fit anywhere? Well, I would suggest [ Read more… ]

Transferrable skills

From our daily member newsletter on October 2, 2017

There is no greater truth about our profession than the one about our having transferrable skills. Like lawyers and marketing folks, us financial types come to the world with talents that can be applied in a variety of situations. (Sort of sounds like the introduction to Superman, doesn’t it?) Generally we believe this hook line and sinker. The problem is getting the rest of the world to suspend their disbelief and listen. That said, if we have built a career that spans decades rather than years or months, there are things we know that are rather specialized. And, if we want to find a job that we will enjoy (that old quality of life issue again), it will tend to [ Read more… ]

An over reliance on job leads

From our daily member newsletter on May 9, 2017

Part of the lecture I deliver to new members who call me is that The FENG is a networking group, not a job listing service. I then add that they shouldn’t allow the fact that we are publishing about hundreds of pages of job leads each month confuse them about our true purpose. In the beginning (when God created heaven and earth), it was my closely held belief that the existence of our job sharing would ensure that most of the good news announcements would indicate that the lucky person got the job from a posting in our evening newsletter. Alas, it has not been so. Sure, over the years I have seen some improvement in this statistic. And, I [ Read more… ]

Asking for specifics

From our daily member newsletter on May 4, 2017

One of the worst things that anyone networking can do is to ask if you know of any jobs for them. I can assure you that the most likely answer will be something to the effect that two weeks ago they came across something that was right for you, but they can’t remember who it was they heard it from. The analogy I would draw for you comes from my experience at a small staffing company back in the early 90’s before the Internet. (Yes, there was a time before instant communication!) This little company was ahead of their time I suppose. They placed senior executives of all types in temporary and permanent jobs. Their key leg up, or so [ Read more… ]

The hidden job market

From our daily member newsletter on March 30, 2017

For those of you who I have not convinced about the value of networking, I thought I would share my own thoughts about something I have observed about the world and why I think it is so. I would welcome differing opinions from our members and/or your own observations. Please send them to Leads@TheFENG.org and Leslie will publish them under our “Notes from Members” column. During my various job campaigns since I started working in 1971 I always noticed a decided lack of published job leads in either Fairfield County Connecticut, where I live, or in New York City, a place to which I was willing to commute. (Please note that my career began well before the Internet, and that [ Read more… ]

The excuse you can’t cure

From our daily member newsletter on February 7, 2017

If you really need to get someone you are interviewing off the phone or out of your office, there is no better approach than to use what I call “The excuse you can’t cure.” In the annals of job search, there is no better tool. No one gets mad. No one screams. No one hits you. (This is especially important.) The beauty of “The excuse you can’t cure.” is that the victim doesn’t feel a thing. In fact, he/she usually accepts the problem as his or her own, not yours. This tool plays itself out with comments such as “If only you had a CPA.” Well, if you don’t have one, you certainly aren’t going to get one by tomorrow. [ Read more… ]

When I grow up

From our daily member newsletter on November 15, 2007

I don’t know about you, but I haven’t actually decided what I want to be when I grow up. Hey, I’m only 61 and there is still plenty of time! Colonel Sanders didn’t start until he was in his 60’s!   There are, of course, lots of things I have decided I am not going to be. For example, I have definitely decided against a career as a test pilot. Too dangerous, and besides, I am afraid of heights.   Still, within the world as we know it, there are lots of things I am capable of doing. I think the key is not to be bound by old concepts.   As I listen to 90-second announcements at our meetings [ Read more… ]

Starting A Consulting Company-Emotional Intelligence & Walt Disney

From our daily member newsletter on November 13, 2007

From Jerry Mills, Founder & CEO of B2B CFO®, Jerry writes:   Matt Bud was kind enough to publish an article I wrote named Emotional Intelligence, on October 18, 2007. I want to thank the dozens of FENG members that wrote emails regarding the article. The emails came from as far away as Germany. Many of the comments were similar to the following:   “Thank you so much for forwarding your article on emotional intelligence. It came at a time when I needed it the most and am very grateful for the reminder. Normally I can overcome the negative and get back to the positive, but I was having a harder time with it this week. The frustration of job [ Read more… ]

The quest for eternal truths

From our daily member newsletter on November 12, 2007

‘Must have industry experience” often appears on position descriptions in this newsletter as well as ones one might see in the newspaper or on the various job boards that exist in the nether world of the Internet.   The question is whether to respond or not to respond when the requirement is so clear. The obvious answer is that it depends.   Much as we would like to believe that we have transferable skills (and we do), each industry has its peculiarities that need to be learned. Is a little cross fertilization from another industry a good idea? I have always been of this opinion.   Still, in any job market, there are always going to be candidates who fit [ Read more… ]

Common courtesy

From our daily member newsletter on November 11, 2007

There are some who would argue that in this day and age of e-mail, the world has become a more impersonal place than in those halcyon days of yesteryear.   Please say it isn’t so. In this e-mail age, it has become SO easy to be personal, that I can’t for the life of me fathom why anyone wouldn’t take the time to say thank you to anyone and everyone who sends them a message.   I like to think that I have 27,000 friends. (I hope all of you feel the same way.) Although all of you need to be patient with me from time to time because I fall behind in my e-mail, I make every attempt to [ Read more… ]

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