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Conquering the Tech Interview with Confidence

I often get questions about what it’s like to interview for a technology job. In particular, job seekers ask what it’s like to interview to be a computer programmer. In fact, my most popular podcast episode ever was with a former Google recruiter, Gayle Laakmann, who described how to prepare for a coding interview.

Years ago, after my bachelor of computer and systems engineering, I competed in a few technical interviews. In the most memorable interview, I was asked to create a complete website. This was before the days of Squarespace and WordPress. The site had to be hand coded, and frankly, it took forever. I learned in this interview that employers have high expectations of computer programmers.

Perhaps they have good reason to give extensive interviews. It’s been said that a great coder can produce ten times as much code as a bad coder. And, it’s hard to get rid of a full time employee after they’re hired. Plus, unlike many other jobs, you really can give a developer a skills test. There are few other jobs where the interview process can give such clear and accurate feedback. On top of everything else, developers aren’t cheap. A company wants to be sure they know what they’re getting in advance.

A job seeker recently shared their coding interview experience with me, in hopes that it might help other developers. They had an initial interview at a company that was looking for experience with a particular programming language. Quickly, the candidate shared that they have not used this programming language in a number of years. They were assured that it would be no problem. The fundamentals were much more important.

During the second round of interviews, the same candidate was asked to complete a test. The test was using a technology that they weren’t familiar with. They were able to do research on their own, but it wasn’t enough. As you can imagine, the candidate walked away feeling unhappy with the experience.

Similar to the “build a website” homework that I had, this homework was meant to push the candidate’s limits. As frustrating as the experience can be, companies use these techniques to vet out potential employees. And, in some cases, the company does this to their own detriment. They can easily burn through candidates and come up with no one to hire.

As a candidate, one takeaway is this. Interviewing is a two way street. I often compare it to dating. Since when do we go on a first date and hope the person will marry us, before we’ve even ordered drinks? Interviewing is no different. Prepare and do your best. But, take the time to pay attention to how the hiring manager treats you. Look for a mutual match. If you don’t find a good fit, keep moving on. Just like with dating, if you stay with someone who’s a bad fit, you may miss out on the right opportunity.

I hope these tips have helped you. Visit CopelandCoaching.com to find more tips to improve your job search. If I can be of assistance to you, don’t hesitate to reach out to me here.

Visit CopelandCoaching.com to find more tips to improve your job search. If I can be of assistance to you, don’t hesitate to reach out to me here.

Also, be sure to subscribe to my Copeland Coaching Podcast on Apple Podcasts or Stitcher where I discuss career advice every Tuesday! If you’ve already heard the podcast and enjoy it, please consider leaving a review in iTunes or Stitcher.

Happy hunting!

Angela Copeland
@CopelandCoach

 

Celebrating MLK 50 & Increasing Our Collective Focus on Diversity & Inclusion


Today is such an important day in history. Today is a day of remembrance and the 50th commemoration of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

In this important time of change, I want to share content related to diversity and inclusion that I think you will enjoy.

MLK50 Livestream

If you’re located in Memphis, there are lots of opportunities to get involved in the MLK50 Commemoration in person. But, if you’re outside of the city, the National Civil Rights Museum is live streaming the celebration TODAY. It is live now and will go all day. Check out the MLK50 Livestream here.

I AM 2018

I had the opportunity to attend a wonderful event this past weekend hosted by AFSCME Local 1733 — I AM 2018. It was a moving tribute to Dr. King and the sanitation workers who striked in 1968. The event was a perfect opportunity to learn more about history, and to stand together. Jesse Jackson spoke about his experience in the Civil Rights Movement. And, the strikers from 1968 attended the event. They had a grand entrance that was truly inspiring. I really cannot say enough about how much I enjoyed this event, and how much I appreciate the folks who put it together.

Below are a few photos from the event.

 

Podcast: Diversity & Inclusion with Mark Lobosco, VP of Talent Solutions at LinkedIn

I had the opportunity to interview Mark Lobosco, the Vice President of Talent Solutions at LinkedIn for the Copeland Coaching Podcast. Mark sponsors a number of company-wide Diversity, Inclusion, and Belonging initiatives at LinkedIn.

On the episode, Mark shares:

  • The differences between diversity, inclusion, and belonging – and why they are important
  • Why companies are increasing their focus on diversity
  • How to identify companies that are diverse and inclusive when you’re job seeking
  • Predictions on how diversity will continue to evolve in the workplace

You can play the podcast on CopelandCoaching.com, or download it on Apple Podcasts or Stitcher. You can also find it in Amazon Alexa as a new Alexa Skill.

Using Transparency to Build a Diverse Workforce

My Career Corner column this week is about diversity, and it’s importance in our workplace. It’s such an important and relevant topic that I want to share it with you here today.

Diversity is one of the most important issues companies are focused on today. LinkedIn recently found that over half of companies say they are very or extremely focused on diversity. This is good news, especially when you consider this. The World Economic Forum recently estimated that it will take 217 years for women to reach complete equality in pay and employment opportunities.

It should be noted that one of the key tools we have available today that was not available years ago is the internet. The transparency now available, especially as it relates to employment, is a gold mine for job seekers. Sites such as Glassdoor, LinkedIn, and Indeed.com provide important data points, including how much workers are paid and how employees rate their workplaces.

To further the mission of diversity, Indeed.com recently announced a partnership with three other websites that focus on inclusiveness in the workplace. This partnership with Fairygodboss.com, InHerSight.com, and Comparably.com will help to provide additional information to job seekers.

The information will show up on the Indeed “Company Pages.” It will allow job seekers to better evaluate the diversity and inclusiveness of an organization. Today’s Company Pages include ratings for work/life balance, compensation/benefits, job security/advancement, management, and culture. In the future, there will also be scores from InHerSight, Comparably, and Fairygodboss that will rank the companies from one to five stars and as a number from one to 100.

The internet still remains an unlikely place to land your next job. But, the data available will help you to decide whether or not you want to accept a job offer from a particular company.

Salary data will also help you to know what is considered fair pay in your industry. In corporate roles, employers setup pay bands. It can be surprising to know that for one job, the pay band can sometimes vary as much as $40,000 or more. That means that one person doing the job may make $65,000, and another person doing the same job may make over $100,000. In theory, this range allows companies to compensate employees based upon experience. In reality, how much you make is often tied to how skilled you are at negotiation.

Using the data available online will help you to ensure you’re getting a fair deal. It will allow you to verify that your future employer is a healthy place to work. And, it will give you a view into your employer’s values and priorities.

This sort of valuable feedback is often not something you can typically find out during a job interview.

Long story short, we still have a long way to go on issues related to diversity and pay equality for all people, including women and men from all backgrounds. But, this level of increased transparency will help you to be your own advocate. Perhaps together, we can shorten the time it will take to reach complete equality in the workplace.

I hope you have a wonderful day, and that you’re able to take a few minutes to commemorate the important work of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

I hope these tips have helped you. Visit CopelandCoaching.com to find more tips to improve your job search. If I can be of assistance to you, don’t hesitate to reach out to me here.

Visit CopelandCoaching.com to find more tips to improve your job search. If I can be of assistance to you, don’t hesitate to reach out to me here.

Also, be sure to subscribe to my Copeland Coaching Podcast on Apple Podcasts or Stitcher where I discuss career advice every Tuesday! If you’ve already heard the podcast and enjoy it, please consider leaving a review in iTunes or Stitcher.

Happy hunting!

Angela Copeland
@CopelandCoach

 

March in Review: Kicking Off April Strong

Happy April second! I hope you’re doing well and that your weekend was a good one. March was an awesome month for me and Copeland Coaching. I’m so excited to share all the details with you here.


 


Copeland Coaching Podcast is now an Alexa Skill

I’m still in disbelief. Amazon has added the Copeland Coaching Podcast as an Alexa Skill. This means that you can now play the show on any Alexa enabled device. I’ve tested it out with my Echo speaker.

I’d love for you to check it out, and it would be amazing if you would leave me a review. Amazon cares about reviews. Reviews help to make the show easier for others to find.

If you’re interested to listen to the show on Alexa, or to leave a review, here’s a video tutorial to show you how to do it!



I Attended My First SXSW

If you follow me on Instagram, you know that I was in Austin this month. I attended the Workplace portion of the SXSW festival. It covered tons of interesting topics, from salary negotiation to creative HR benefits to diversity and pay equality. It was an exciting week filled with great information!
I’ve been interviewing a number of the speakers for my podcast and will continue to share the episodes into the coming weeks.

Check out the episodes that are already available on Apple Podcasts or wherever you get your podcasts.


I Visited Indeed.com in Person

What! How exciting is this! I visited the number one job site in the world – in person!

I can’t thank the awesome folks at Indeed enough for inviting me to their campus. They treated me to a wonderful lunch in their gourmet cafeteria and gave me a tour of their campus. I really got a chance to see the people whose motto is, “We help people get jobs.”

I continue to be impressed by the focus and effort that Indeed puts into treating its employees well. On top of interesting work, “Indeedians” receive fun perks such as unlimited vacation and free lunches. There’s more to it than this, but the more I get to know Indeed, the more I’m convinced that it’s a special place to work.


Know Your Myers-Briggs Type Indicator? Use Your Results To Your Advantage

You know I love the Myers-Briggs assessment! I am so happy to be included in Forbes this month with my thoughts on how you can use the MBTI to your advantage.

“The Myers-Briggs Type Indicator personality test can be a fun thing to do. It’s especially helpful if you’re thinking of switching careers, but you’re not sure what you’d like to do. The MBTI can help you to identify strengths and potential future career paths that you may not have thought of before.”

Check out the entire piece on Forbes.com.


This Is What An A+ LinkedIn Summary Looks Like

Two awesome things together in one place: Girlboss and LinkedIn. Huge thank you to Girlboss for including my advice on this piece about making your LinkedIn the best it can be.

“The LinkedIn summary is a like a mini-bio. Use it to give a brief personal narrative of your background. Don’t hesitate to restate important facts that can be found later in your profile. The reader may not make it all the way down your profile.”

Check out all of the advice on how to write an A+ LinkedIn summary on Girlboss.


Relight Your Spark: 15 Ways To Renew Motivation At A Long-Term Job

If you’ve been at your job for years and need a little inspiration, this piece is for you. Big thanks to Forbes for including my tips on how to renew your motivation.

“If you’re feeling burned out at your current job, a great next step is to begin exploring alternative opportunities. It’s much easier to stay excited about what you’re doing today if you know that you’re working on your next big move. But, be careful to job search at home. You want to give it your all when you’re at your current job.”

Check out all the ways you can renew your motivation on Forbes.


Copeland Coaching Podcast

I had a number of incredible guests in March. You can listen to the interviews on the Copeland Coaching Podcast on Apple Podcasts, Stitcher, Spotify, Alexa, or wherever you download podcasts.

Margaret Heffernan, Willful Blindness – Margaret has run five different businesses in the U.S. and the U.K. She teaches at several business schools in the U.S. and U.K. and sit on the boards of three organizations. Margaret has published five books including: Willful Blindness, A Bigger Prize, and The Naked Truth. She’s also given multiple TED Talks, and speaks at conferences and organizations around the world.

Audrey Boring, Aces Branding – Audrey is an independent marketing and advertising professional. She began her creative career as a copywriter, setting up her own freelance business in 2010. She has worked with clients such as Blinds.com, International Paper, and St. Louis Children’s Hospital. She also recently spoke at SXSW about “Building the creative career you’re meant to have.”

Alexandra Dickinson, Ask For It – Alexandra is an entrepreneur who teaches people to negotiate. She’s the Founder and CEO of the negotiation training and coaching company Ask For It. She is a contributing writer at Women at Forbes and has spoken at organizations like UN Women, Columbia Business School, and Facebook. She spoke at SXSW on the topic, “Time’s Up on the Gender Pay Gap: How to Negotiate in 2018.”

Dr. Karlyn Borysenko, Zen Workplace – Karlyn is the Principle at Zen Workplace. She is an organizational psychologist and performance coach. Karlyn helps individuals find greater happiness and fulfillment in their professional lives, and works with organizations to help create amazing environments for their teams that drive productivity. She spoke at SXSW at a session called “Zen Your Work: Creating an Ideal Work Experience.”


Career Corner Column

When to Ask Your Boss for More Money – Who wouldn’t like to make more money? If you’ve read my column before, you probably know that I’m an advocate of changing companies every three to five years (for many industries).

Starting a Digital Marketing Career – Digital marketing is a hot field. It has been hot for more than ten years. I rarely share much about how to move into the field of digital marketing.

Secrets Recruiters Won’t Tell You– Applying for a job seems like a fair process. You apply online, and if you’re a good fit for the job, the company will give you a call.

The New World of Social Media – Social media used to be so fun. We could all stay connected with friends and family, for long periods of time and around the world.


I hope these tips have helped you. Visit CopelandCoaching.com to find more tips to improve your job search. If I can be of assistance to you, don’t hesitate to reach out to me here.

Visit CopelandCoaching.com to find more tips to improve your job search. If I can be of assistance to you, don’t hesitate to reach out to me here.

Also, be sure to subscribe to my Copeland Coaching Podcast on Apple Podcasts or Stitcher where I discuss career advice every Tuesday! If you’ve already heard the podcast and enjoy it, please consider leaving a review in Apple Podcasts or Stitcher.

Happy hunting!

Angela Copeland
@CopelandCoach

 

Copeland Coaching Podcast now available on Amazon through Alexa enabled devices


I hope you had a wonderful, and very lucky St. Patrick’s Day. I know I did! In fact, I have some super exciting news to share with you today!

Amazon has added the Copeland Coaching Podcast to their network. This means that the podcast is now an Alexa Skill. And, you’ll be able to listen to the Copeland Coaching Podcast on any Alexa enabled device.

I’ve been testing it out on my Amazon Echo speaker. It’s super easy, fast, and best of all — free.

But, you may be like me. I had no idea how to add an Alexa Skill. So, I made a video to walk you through it. You can click the video above, or check out the easy to follow instructions below.

  1. Get out your smartphone and open your Amazon Alexa app on your phone. Look at the top left hand corner of the app. You’ll see the menu bar. It looks like 3 horizontal lines. Click the menu to open it.
  2. When the menu pops up, look near the bottom for the word “Skills.” When you see it, click it. A new page will pop up. Near the top right hand side of the screen, you’ll see a little search box. It says, “Search all skills.” Click in that box. Search for “Copeland Coaching.”
  3. A new page will come up. You’ll see the Copeland Coaching Podcast on the screen. Click it. Then, click the “Enable” button.
  4. After you’ve enabled the Copeland Coaching Podcast as an Alexa Skills, you can listen to it on your Alexa enabled device. Just say, “Alexa, tell Copeland Coaching to play the newest episode.” It’s literally that easy!
  5. After you’ve listened to the show, it would mean the world to me if you would leave me a review. It makes the podcast easier for other people to find (really, it makes a difference!). While you’re in the Copeland Coaching Podcast on the Amazon Alexa app, scroll down. There’s a button that says, “Write a review.” Click the button and you’ll be taken to another screen where you can give the show a rating and a review. It’s quick and easy!

If you find that it’s not easy to do these steps on your phone, you can also try them in a web browser. Here’s a direct link to the podcast on Amazon.

Thank you for your continued support of the Copeland Coaching Podcast, and for your Amazon Alexa review! Each week, I interview an expert on the topic of job searching and getting ahead in your career. I hope you enjoy it!

If you have any questions about listening to the show on your Alexa enabled device, please don’t hesitate to send me an email. I’m happy to help out!

I hope these tips have helped you. Visit CopelandCoaching.com to find more tips to improve your job search. If I can be of assistance to you, don’t hesitate to reach out to me here.

Visit CopelandCoaching.com to find more tips to improve your job search. If I can be of assistance to you, don’t hesitate to reach out to me here.

Also, be sure to subscribe to my Copeland Coaching Podcast on Apple Podcasts or Stitcher where I discuss career advice every Tuesday! If you’ve already heard the podcast and enjoy it, please consider leaving a review in iTunes or Stitcher.

Happy hunting!

Angela Copeland
@CopelandCoach

 

February Recap: March your search forward!

Happy March! The weather is finally beginning to warm up. It’s the perfect time to keep moving your search forward.

February was a big month. I released four new episodes of the podcast, and was featured in a number of articles on sites including Glassdoor, Forbes, Girlboss, and The Montley Fool. Below is a recap in case you missed anything.

I’m excited to report that the Copeland Coaching Podcast was also selected as a “Best Podcast to Boost Your Career” by Career Tree! If you haven’t already, please be sure to subscribe to the Copeland Coaching Podcast on Apple Podcasts. It makes the show easier for other job seekers to find.

And with that, I hope you enjoy these tips from the past month! Have a wonderful week!


Best Podcasts to Boost Your Career

As I mentioned, I’m excited to share that the Copeland Coaching Podcast was selected by Career Tree as one of the Best Podcasts to Boost Your Career.

To check out the entire list of podcasts, visit the Career Tree website.


10 Career Experts Share Their #1 Piece of Job Search Advice

I am thankful to be included in this piece by Glassdoor. You may be able to guess the advice I gave.

One you announce that you’re looking for a new gig, unsolicited job search advice is inescapable: “Video resumes are the future!” “Go back to school!” “Talk to my cousin’s best friend’s son, he knows someone who used to intern there!”

“Sites like Glassdoor provide so much great information about job postings, salaries and company reviews. We’ve never had more good information at our fingertips. But, don’t rely on the internet [entirely]. Hiring managers are bombarded with hundreds of resumes that come in through the internet. When you’re searching, apply online. But, then think about what you can also do offline. For example, do you have contacts at the company that you could network with? Could you reach out to the hiring manager directly? When you connect to the company offline, you become a real person… These straightforward offline steps will put you in the fast lane when it comes to hiring.” —Angela Copeland, career coach

To check out all of the advice about job searching, read the entire article on the Glassdoor website.


 


Six Key Things To Remember When Using Analytics for Team Performance

Forbes included me in this great piece about the place that analytics has for measuring team performance in today’s workforce.

From customer chatbots to virtual assistants, it seems that artificial intelligence is everywhere in the business world today. One important application of AI is workforce optimization – analyzing team data to track productivity and automate certain tasks and decisions, with the end goal of making staff members more efficient.

In theory, analytics and artificial intelligence should make workers more productive. AI should help to minimize routine tasks, freeing up time, so workers can focus in on more complex issues. Analytics will help to measure productivity and provide more real-time feedback on long-term goals. – Angela Copeland, Copeland Coaching

To get more advice on using analytics to measure team performance, check out the entire Forbes piece here.


Copeland Coaching Podcast

I had the honor of interviewing four great guests this month for the Copeland Coaching Podcast. You can check out all of the episodes on Apple Podcasts or wherever you get your podcasts. If you haven’t already, please also be sure to subscribe to the Copeland Coaching Podcast in Apple Podcasts. It makes the show easier for others to find it.

Bart Cleveland, Job Propulsion Lab – Bart spent over 30 years growing brands like The Ritz-Carlton, Coca-Cola and CNN. Now, he helps creative professionals plan and execute successful career through Job Propulsion Lab. Bart is also a contributing author of the book, “The Get A Job Workshop, How To Find Your Way To A Creative Career In Advertising.”

Kathryn Gates, Gates Therapy – Kathryn is a psychotherapist and fitness specialist who works with adults, teens, couples and families. Kathryn’s mission is to support her clients in healing their pasts and embracing their creativity to find their unique life purpose.

Alex Smith, City of Memphis – Alex is the Chief HR Officer for the City of Memphis. She also served on the HR teams at Brightstar Device Protection, Target Corporation, and Microsoft. Alex will be speaking this year at SXSW on a panel called, “Dear HR: Ditch the pool table and pay student loans.”

Christine Laird, Oklahoma City Chamber of Commerce – Christine is the Manager of Talent and Business Growth at the Oklahoma City Chamber of Commerce. Previously, she was a Senior Recruiter for Kelly Services where she was consistently recognized as a top performer both regionally and nationally.


Career Corner Column

February included a number of exciting topics on job searching, and the value of college.

Treating employees with dignity – Part of my job is to work with professionals who have recently become unemployed. Layoffs are a part of life. Heartbreak doesn’t have to be.

The Value of College – College is expensive. Private college is even more. What can colleges do now to increase the value of the education they’re providing?

Love Your Job – February is the month of love.. It always happens just after we create our latest New Year’s resolutions. All these goals bring up an important question. Do you love your job?

Diversity in Today’s Workplace – LinkedIn released its report on 2018 Global Recruiting Trends. They surveyed 9,000 recruiters and hiring managers from around the world on the state of hiring. Their research found that the biggest game changer in the hiring space is diversity. Learn more about their findings.

 


I hope these tips have helped you. Visit CopelandCoaching.com to find more tips to improve your job search. If I can be of assistance to you, don’t hesitate to reach out to me here.

Visit CopelandCoaching.com to find more tips to improve your job search. If I can be of assistance to you, don’t hesitate to reach out to me here.

Also, be sure to subscribe to my Copeland Coaching Podcast on Apple Podcasts or Stitcher where I discuss career advice every Tuesday! If you’ve already heard the podcast and enjoy it, please consider leaving a review in Apple Podcasts or Stitcher.

Happy hunting!

Angela Copeland
@CopelandCoach

 

Picking between multiple job offers


When you’re in the middle of a job search, it often seems like things will never end. You’ve been looking for months and months. The rejection has been painful. You have wondered if you’ll ever find a job. You’ve gotten enough automated emails to last a lifetime. You’ve had enough of family members and friends asking how your search is going – when you know it’s going nowhere.

This pain is especially true if you are in between jobs right now. If you’re not working, you may wonder how in the world you will pay the bills. The search has been going on for months and months. You’re not sure what to do.

Then, very often, the most unexpected thing happens. Out of the blue (and after searching for months), you get a job offer. Then, a day goes by and you get a second job offer. And, if you’re really lucky, a third offer begins to roll in.

When you’re in the middle of searching, this scenario seems virtually impossible.

But, strangely… I see it happen over and over. A job seeker will be at their wit’s end. They’ve been looking and looking for a long period of time when suddenly, a number of offers come in all at the same time.

It’s hard to pinpoint exactly why this happens. I suspect it is related to a few key factors. After a certain amount of searching, the ball has started to roll. Employers know about you. Your resume is being circulated. Perhaps you’ve had a few interviews. Maybe you’ve even gotten better at searching as you’ve gone along.

Whatever the reason, multiple offers (all at the same time) can be hard to sort through – especially when you weren’t expecting them at all. So, where should you begin?

First, create a spreadsheet in Excel. Outline all the details of the job offers side-by-side. Include information such as annual base salary, annual projected performance bonus, vacation time, and healthcare benefits. This will allow you to compare the two (or more) offers – by comparing just the facts.

Compare the job descriptions and the job titles. Is one job in the perfect industry for you? Does one job have a more impressive title? Does one allow you to do work you really love? This is important to consider. Many job seekers are more interested to do a job they love than one that pays the most money.

Think about the differences in the company culture. Do you get along with the boss at one organization better than the other? Does one company feel more comfortable to you? Very often, your relationship with your boss and your coworkers will determine your future success at the organization.

Consider details such as location. Is one job located within driving distance, while the other will require you to uproot your family? If you do have to move, is the increased cost of living worth it?

There are so many factors that influence which job offer we should take. The one that’s the most important is your gut feeling. Do you love one of the jobs, and have real hesitations about the other? Listen to yourself! I can’t tell you the number of job seekers who told me that they knew they were going to fail BEFORE they ever started working at their future employer. They always had a feeling that they couldn’t place.

At the end of the day, getting multiple offers is unexpected – and typically very positive. Before this happens to you, take the time to write down what you would ideally like in your next job offer. When multiple offers begin to come in, you will be able to compare your goals to the reality – without the anxiety that comes along with being hit with offers.

If you’re still struggling to find a job, keep moving. The best way to find a new job is to continue to look. If you look hard enough, you may find that an offer (or three) will come along when you’re least expecting it.

I hope these tips have helped you. Visit CopelandCoaching.com to find more tips to improve your job search. If I can be of assistance to you, don’t hesitate to reach out to me here.

Visit CopelandCoaching.com to find more tips to improve your job search. If I can be of assistance to you, don’t hesitate to reach out to me here.

Also, be sure to subscribe to my Copeland Coaching Podcast on iTunes or Stitcher where I discuss career advice every Tuesday! If you’ve already heard the podcast and enjoy it, please consider leaving a review in iTunes or Stitcher.

Happy hunting!

Angela Copeland
@CopelandCoach