Tag Archives: Lee Cooper. The Recruiters Little Black Book

Video – the future of your job search?

Video Resumes are featuring more and more heavily in web chatter.  I have yet to have an Executive approach me with a video resume, I have yet to have a client ask for one.  Nobody has asked me for advice on how best to put one together.  I still receive regular calls from job seekers on how best to put the traditional 2 page curriculum vitae together.

Trust me they are coming.  I first blogged about this subject in September last year when I came across what I considered to be a quite brilliant video CV from Graeme Anthony.


Compare Graeme’s to a video resume I spotted on YouTube recently (below).  I am clear what Graeme brings to the party.  I am clear as to his strengths, his talents, his experience and his skills.  I am clear what he has achieved and what he wants to achieve in the future.  I am clear because he is clear.

The video below is a different story.  Clever, interesting, but I am left feeling uncertain as to what I have just seen.

Other than being a workaholic who likes coffee and possesses skills such as the ability to send an email from his pda whilst in a car park, I am uncertain what he brings to my business.  I am not intrigued, I am irritated.  Sure it is well produced, but its ambiguous.  When you are looking for a job, content is as crucial as presentation.

What can you do, what have you done?  What do you want, how can I help you, how can you help me?  It answers none of these questions that might just set this guy apart from those others he is competing with at interview.  It is short, its concise, but it gives me little to consider.

Success in the jobs market is all about setting yourself apart from those with whom you are competing.  The competition is fierce.  Jaguar Landrover has this week announced that it has had more than 14000 applications to 1500 new posts.

The CV is only ever a catalyst to a conversation.  Your CV, video or otherwise, will not get you a job, that’s down to you, but it will get you a conversation.  I am busy, you are busy.  Less is more.  Cut to the chase.  Tell me who you are, what you’ve done, what you have achieved, how that has added value to your employer and why therefore that could be of interest and value to me.  Get it on tape and lets talk.

What do think as to the future of the CV?  Would you consider a video?  Let me have your comments, I would love to know your view.

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Filed under Recruitment, Social Media

Interview Nick Bollettieri Head Coach, IMG Performance Institute

Sport is a metaphor for life.  The emotions, the commitment, the effort, the highs, the lows, the blood, the sweat, the tears, the bouquets, the brickbats.  Follow a sport, play a sport, you can experience all that life can offer in ninety minutes, five hours, a day, five days.  There is much business can learn from sport and vice versa, not least sport would appear to acknowledge that the best players are not guaranteed to make the best managers.

Nick Bollettieri is one of those people who has managed tremendous success from the business of sport.  An American Tennis Coach, he has taken the likes of Jim Courier, Andre Agassi, Monica Seles and Mary Pierce to the world number one spot.

For those of you that aren’t familiar, MeetTheBoss.tv  is a great resource for all things Executive Leadership and Management Training.  Click on the link below for the full interview and here some great content from Nick on the lessons he has taken from a career in business and sport working with some of the world’s greatest talent.  You can subscribe for free, its more than worth the key strokes.

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Filed under Leadership, Talent, Uncategorized

Back to work

The UK has one of the highest rates of workless households in Europe.  1.9 million children are living in homes where no-one has a job.  5 million people are on out of work benefits.

This week the UK Government will announce its plan to tackle the challenge of long-term benefits dependence.  Something has to be done, not only from a financial perspective but from a societal one.  Nearly 2 million children are growing up with no role model when it comes to doing a decent days work.  How on earth have we gotten to a point where many are better off, financially, out of work than in work?  What possible long-term benefit does that offer anyone?  What incentive is there to go out to work?

The suggestion is that those long-term unemployed will be “forced” to work for their benefits.  This can only be a good thing.  Getting up in the morning with a purpose can only be healthy.  For those genuine long-term unemployed this won’t be a problem.  From my experience, those in such a situation are desperately keen to do something, to contribute, to have a sense of purpose, challenge, direction.  I have no issue with those genuinely deserving of state support.  It is only those who are screwing the system, that are idle, simply unwilling to contribute who will be running scared, appalled that the state is finally extolling the virtues of personal accountability and responsibility.  Mr Cameron, Mr Clegg, make it happen.

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Time now to focus on the long term

Business in the West is all about now.  It’s all about today, tomorrow, this month, this quarter.  It is all about what you can do today to have a positive effect on this months numbers, this quarters numbers, this years return to shareholders.  It’s not healthy.  Long term gain is compromised for the sake of the quick win.  It requires people to work longer hours, to get more done in increasingly shorter periods of time.  This is not about being more productive, about making better use of our time, but about squeezing more in to an already crammed schedule.  Technology has made us all more readily available.  As a consequence the lines between work and home become ever more blurred.

China thinks not in days, months, quarters or even years.  China thinks in dynasties.  There rise to economic powerhouse has been planned and in the making for years.  It is built on strong, sustainable foundations that will protect the long-term interests of the nation.  I am not suggesting that the Chinese Economy is not susceptible to the usual peaks and troughs that the rest of us suffer from.  However there is much we can learn from focusing on long-term, sustainable growth built over decades, not quarters.

We have survived.  The world did not end in 2008.  Sure, changes needed to be made, balance sheets repaired, costs cut.  People have suffered.  Now it is time to focus on rebuilding, re – investing. re – inventing.  We need to change the way we think.  We need to think long-term, to plan long-term, to invest long-term if we are to see sustained economic prosperity that delivers jobs, health, balance and wealth for all.

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Filed under Job Creation, Leadership

Management lessons from the Wayne Rooney saga.

Your star performer has a contract up for renewal.  He has performed consistently at the very highest level for years, but in recent times his form has taken a dip.  Something must be wrong.   He has great talent.  How can you help him to get back to the level of performance you need to realise the objectives you have set as a leadership team?

You put your arm around him.  You offer help, whatever you can to support him.  How does he thank you?  He openly questions your ambition, your hiring decisions.  What impact does this have on your team?  He has broken the bond, the trust that exists and is crucial to team success.  How will his colleagues react?

For years you have espoused the virtues of no one player being bigger than the team and your actions have consistently evidenced this.  This time its different.  The financial situation makes acquiring new talent incredibly challenging.  You are working hard to develop your own talent, but this takes time.

Consider the actions of Sir Alex Ferguson.  He talks openly about his disappointment.  He looks physically shocked, disillusioned, let down, he opens up to the world, expresses his disappointment.  A master stroke?

He forced the issue out in to the open.  Rooney had to make a decision.  Once again Ferguson looks to have been the master of ensuring that nothing allows his focus and that of his team in meeting their objective to be thrown off course.

What of Wayne Rooney?  He looked to rebuild trust with his team mates by offering up an apology.  Trust is something that takes a long time to build up and a second to break down.  Its easier if you are the talisman, the natural leader, the difference between success and failure, to paper over the cracks.  After all, we need you, right?  But at what price?  You have made it clear that you don’t consider your colleagues to be as good as your competitors.  If times get tough here issues are bound to surface.

If it were just about the money Rooney would appear to be the winner.  If reports are to be believed, he has doubled his money.  If you have made the decision to resign from your employer rarely will money be the real issue.  There is always more to it.  Offering you more money to stay is simply putting a plaster on a deep cut.  It stems the flow of blood and helps the wound to heal, but you will be left with a scar.  More money simply papers over the cracks, temporarily.  The reason that you were looking to leave in the first place will still be around 6 months later.  The extra money makes those issues easier to deal with for a spell, but unless addressed they will re – surface.

I can’t decide who the winner is here, if indeed there is one at all.  Ferguson gets to keep his star man.  Rooney doubles the value of his contract, with assurances from his board that his ambitions will be matched by their investment decisions.  It is surely a dangerous premise to allow your star man to dictate the broader investment strategy of the board.  Would you allow your star sales person to hold the board to ransom in the same way?

Is sport just different?  Is this a master stroke in negotiation from Rooney and his advisors?  Is Ferguson once again proving to be the master in management, constantly building and rebuilding winning teams?  The answer will come in May when the Premier League once again crowns its champions.

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Filed under Employee Engagement, Leadership

Who’s your number 2, Steve Jobs?

I love a gadget.  Ipod, Ipad, Iphone, Itunes, AppleTV, Mac, Macbook, they all feature somewhere , in someway, in my life.  I love what they do and I love how they do it.  Clearly so do many others.

Just look at yesterdays Q4 results.  3.89 million Macs, 14.1 million iPhones, 9.05 million iPods, and 4.19 million iPads sold in one quarter.  They are killing the competition, selling 2 million more iPhones last quarter than RIM sold BlackBerry devices.

The numbers are compelling.  In one quarter, $20.34 billion in revenue and $4.31 billion in profit.  The success juggernaut that is Apple enjoyed a share price one year ago around $190 a share.  Today Apple shares closed at $317.93 (an all time high) giving a market cap approaching $300BN.

What possibly can go wrong?

I can see only one problem coming over the hill for Apple and its a monster.  Who is your number two, Steve Jobs?

I am sure he has one.  I am sure in fact that he has several superstars that he has identified within Apple and indeed outside who he feels have the talent to fill his shoes.  I am sure he invests much of his time mentoring, teaching, engaging, developing his key players of the future.

He has history to learn from.  The last time Apple rid themselves of Jobs incredible talents, it was a disaster for the company.  I am sure he won’t allow that to happen again.  Will he?

Succession planning is crucial to long-term, sustainable success.  Jobs casts an imposing and vast shadow.  Whoever fills his shoes will be faced with a thankless task.  However, fill them he or she must if Apple is to continue to look after the best interests of its stakeholders.

It is the responsibility of leadership to ensure succession planning is an integral part of business strategy.  Long term, sustainable success requires a commitment to developing the leaders of tomorrow today.   Succession planning is essential at all levels within business.

Who is your number 2?

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Filed under Corporate Governance, Leadership