Category Archives: Job Search

Karma Comes Back to You Hard

As you probably know, yesterday was April Fool’s Day. Of course, I made sure to pull a few over on my friends. I’ll admit I wasn’t that nice: I told my one friend that I couldn’t come to her wedding (that I’m in by the way) and the other that I got into a fight and was at the hospital. I was also the mastermind behind another prank on the same friend that got our other friends involved. Yes, I am evil and you should judge me.

Let me first explain: I often take life way too seriously so April Fool’s Day is an opportunity to mess with my friends and have a little fun. I’ll admit I took it a little too far last night. I’m sorry Niki and Lauren! 😉 I’d never actually lie to either of you and the plague couldn’t keep me from your wedding, Niki!

After apologizing and feeling like an idiot about my pranks, I started to think about karma and April Fool’s Day. While it is only one day a year, you have to be careful on what pranks you pull and on who you pull them. Taking it too far could lead to bad karma. But what exactly is karma?

Definition of Karma:

1. often capitalized : the force generated by a person’s actions held in Hinduism and Buddhism to perpetuate transmigration and in its ethical consequences to determine the nature of the person’s next existence.
So that’s one way of thinking about it. Your actions or what you put out into the universe affect you and the situations you encounter. You give what you get. If you help others, others will help you. Pay it forward and the world will repay you. That’s simple enough, right?
I’m a firm believer in karma. Sometimes it takes a while for the universe to make the planets align but every single action has a consequence. You may think you’re getting away with it, but the universe always knows. Then there’s the old adage, “Why do bad things happen to good people?” I don’t have a specific answer for you. But occasionally, it’s not your actions but your attitude that throws the universe off. I’m not saying be a happy fool every day but having a positive attitude and faith in the future often leads to good things. I certainly am not a shining example of this but I do believe a positive attitude and a firm belief that things will turn out right goes a long way. When I was job searching, I was so miserable until one day I saw how different and worse my life could be. From that moment on, I stayed as positive as I could while job searching and interacting with people. I think that shift in attitude and perspective helped me land a really great job.
I don’t think you should do something just because it’s good karma. I’m going to volunteer because it’s good karma. Nope, that’s not right. You have to willingly put good thoughts and actions out there in order to have good karma come your way. You have to believe in what you’re thinking or doing wholeheartedly. Don’t live your life just to have good karma but absolutely consider what could happen when making decision or playing pranks.
I hope my karma isn’t thrown off because of yesterday’s pranks. Lauryn Hill’s song, “Lost Ones” gives good insight onto how karma works. Listen below and share your thoughts!

Check out my guest post on my friend and mentor Jason Mollica’s blog

One Guy's Journey

(Jas’ note: I’m thrilled to have Alex Crispino guest post on the blog today. She’s a fellow Temple Owl and someone I’m proud to call a colleague. She never backed down during her job search challenges and her story is something everyone can learn from.)

As a senior in college, I started my job search early, thinking I would find my dream job right after graduation. Most of my friends did the same. We worked hard during college and felt prepared to enter the real world. But, honestly, nothing prepares you for that.

Both graduating college and job searching bring a wave of emotions. You feel excited to start your life, but you’re also terrified that you will fail.  My job search started in March 2012 and did not end until November 2012 when I landed my first job. Here are the three major lessons I learned, thanks to that…

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Motivation Mondays: Thank God Even Crazy Dreams Come True

I apologize for the lack of posts last week. But, I promise I have a good reason! For the last week, I was in California working a program for my job. It was six days of awesomeness and I still can’t believe that I got to be a part of something so inspiring. The location was breath-taking and the sessions really made you think. Most importantly, I had the opportunity to work with an amazing group of people from different places and backgrounds. It really was one for the books.

In the month I’ve been working, I’ve gotten to participate in some great programs and work with some insanely talented people. The amount of experience and exposure I’ve gained in the last month is unbelievable. Everyone I’ve met has the patience of a saint and is so willing to help. To think, just a few short months ago, I thought all hope was lost and that a job would never be found. Lesson learned.

Two weeks ago, I attended the Carrie Underwood concert. She put on a fantastic show and reminded me how lucky I was. Her song, Crazy Dreams, really sums up the whirlwind last month of my life. Maybe having a satisfying job and being happy isn’t a crazy dream, but after 400 applications and a handful of rejection letters, it really feels like one. While in California for the week, I kept sharing my story of finding a job with many and received tons of congratulations and words of encouragement. My response was always how lucky I am to have such a great job with a supportive team.

While having a job is not the only aspect of life, it certainly plays a large role. I’d like to remind anyone looking for a job or struggling with their current employment to keep the faith. Everything truly does happen for a reason and I am a living example of that. Hard work and continued faith will ultimately lead you to your end goal, whatever that may be.

Below is Carrie Underwood’s song Crazy Dreams. Listen to the lyrics and remember all of your crazy dreams. You are the only one that can make them a reality.

Broadening My Board of Directors

I can remember sitting in one of my first college classes listening to my professor talk about building your board of directors. I was confused; what did I need a board of directors for? I was just an 18 year-old freshman who didn’t have a clue what I wanted to do with my life. At this point, my board of directors consisted of my mom, my best friend and the professor from this class. Luckily, I’ve built up my board of directors during the last few years.

During college, you don’t realize how many relationships you establish and maintain. From professors to professionals, if you do it right, your list should be very long. Throughout my college career, I made sure I got to know professors and introduced myself to every professional that spoke at our PRSSA meetings. By the time I graduated, I had a nice group of contacts. I had used these people as my board of directors, asking them questions about classes, internships and anything else I needed help with. However, after graduation, I wanted to take my board of directors to the next level.

When I started my job search, I would send tons of resumes out each week via email or online applications. After a few months of that failing, I started reaching out to my board of directors. If they didn’t know of any jobs, they gave me the name of someone who did. Within the last two months, I’ve talked to about 20 people. Each has given me advice about my résumé, cover letter and the job search in general. These connections have proven much more effective than just sending my résumé everywhere. During this process, I’ve grown my board of director from primarily Philadelphia contacts to contacts in New York, Washington D.C. and Chicago.

I never thought something I learn during freshman year would turn out to be so helpful. I’m glad I paid attention to what my professor said and used it to my advantage. Making contacts and building relationships, both inside and outside of your field is always going to be beneficial.

How have you built your board of directors? Feel free to share your tips and stories with me!

The Right To Be Picky

Job searching is a full time job especially for someone like me. I have an color-coded spreadsheet broken down by location. I have five different cover letters tailored to specific positions. I must apply to at least two jobs everyday and update my spreadsheet weekly. I know it sounds a bit crazy but I need to do everything in my power to get a job, right?

When I look at a position, I envision myself working at that company in that role. Most positions include public relations, marketing, communications, social media or development somewhere in the title. However, after hundreds of applications, I started to apply to anything remotely comparable to my skill sets.

Fast forward to yesterday when I commuted into Manhattan for an interview with American Express Publishing. The position was for a Business Assistant, someone to complete administrative tasks and enter some data into spreadsheets. Certainly, I could manage that. The man I interviewed with, the Director of Finance, thought otherwise.

This man was the definition of honesty. He said my resume was impressive and that he could tell I was eager to learn. He appreciated me coming in on such a miserable day (hurricanes in Manhattan yesterday) but said I wasn’t right for the position. Mind you, I barely had spoken at this point. He offered to hold on to my resume in case a position opened in their PR department. We shook hands, I thanked him profusely and back I went to New Jersey pretty disappointed.

Yes, rejection isn’t fun nor is commuting in the rain. But, I was reminded that I do have the right to be picky when applying for jobs. I am allowed to pass up opportunities that aren’t right for me. I am allowed to wait for the right job to come along. It doesn’t have to be perfect but it can be close. I don’t have much patience so this is hard for me. I am going to try and remind myself of this experience every time I read a job description.

I was also reminded yesterday that being passionate is important. My interviewer saw how passionate I was when talking about the career I wanted. He praised me for it and said it was more important to be passionate then to be employed. That alone was worth the wet commute into Manhattan.

Do recent graduates have the right to be picky? Don’t be afraid to share your opinion!

Career Fair Hunger Games

On Wednesday, I attended the Madison Square Garden Career Fair. Some of the biggest names in sports like the NBA, the New Jersey Devils and the New York Redbulls were present along with the Madison Square Garden Company, CBS Radio and Burson-Marsteller. I was very excited to interact with representatives from these companies, as face-to-face communication is always going to trump emailing your resume.

About 350 of what appeared to be mostly recent college graduates assembled outside of the Prudential Center in Newark, New Jersey. As my cousin and I waited in line, you couldn’t help but size up the competition. I caught myself checking out what everyone was wearing and whose resume looked more professional. Once inside, all 350 of us were set free to move around to each organization’s table. Lines at popular places like the NBA formed quickly and you ended up waited on average 20 minutes to talk to their representatives.

Quickly the innocent career fair turned into a scene from the Hunger Games with people trying to cut lines and trash talk. Yes, I am not lying, this did happen! Through the crowds and chaos, I was determined to hand out some resumes and make personal connections with certain representatives. After a grueling four hours, here’s what I learned from the Career Fair Hunger Games:

1) Positivity is Key: After hearing that MSG did not have any entry level PR positions, I could have easily been discouraged. But instead, I smiled, got the representative’s business card and moved on. Yes, I wish they had a job opening but so what?! I had to meet other people and keep the smile on my face. I kept my spirits up by knowing I was making real connections with people that could help me in the future.

2) Face-to-Face Communication is King: Don’t get me wrong, I’m a big believer in the power of social media, but introducing yourself and your abilities in person will always be more beneficial. Representatives saw my confidence and my initial reaction to their questions. It was also easier to convey the passion I had working for my previous internship. I had one representative from the Devils actually tell me how good I was at speaking to new people. It pays off!

3) It’s Not About Everyone Else: It was easy to get caught up in what everyone was wearing or overhearing things other people were saying to representatives. But, after a few minutes inside, I quickly realized it was about ME, not everyone else. Who cares if the kid next to me had an internship with Major League Baseball?! It was about putting my best foot forward and showing how I was an asset to each company. It was initially very intimidating seeing 349 people going for the same position. But I had to focus on me in order to make a rockstar impression.

Has anyone else had a similar experience at a career fair? Let me know.

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