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'Dear Sam' Column

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How and why to leverage LinkedIn as a job seeker
Job search guidance when looking for a part-time role
Putting pen to paper and writing your first resume in 20 years
How to overcome your current title not reflecting what you want to do next
Shedding light on why a resume isn't yielding traction in a candidate's job search
Promoting your candidacy to recruiters on LinkedIn
How to handle a segue from your career
Will I be seen as a competitive candidate at my age
Venturing into retirement and creating a resume to present limited full-time experiences
Steps to reduce your anxiety before a job interview
Is it okay to remove all dates from your resume to look more competitive
Should I dumb down my resume to reduce any potential intimidation factor
The most important thing to do on your resume when you are returning to work
Is there such a thing as being too creative on your resume
3 critical steps to take as you reenter the job market
Am I the next member of the Great Resignation
Is a general or targeted approach more effective when searching for a job
Does practice really make the process of networking easier
The #1 thing you can do to turn your job search around
What is the best resume format for military to civilian transitions
Is embellishing expected on a resume
How can I make my LinkedIn InMail messages most effective
How to build a compelling brand when you function in a support role
Should you ask for a cost of living compensation adjustment
How to emulate a strategic picture of your candidacy on an employment application
Calculate the risk you want to take when stating salary expectations
Can you leave a job you just started or will it hurt your resume
How to brand yourself when you don’t want a promotion
Don’t ask others for their “opinion” on your resume…opinions are not the same as expertise
Tip to improve your personal brand in 2022
How do you know when it is time for “Plan B” in your job search?
Seeking fulfillment doesn’t always mean changing jobs
Personal branding questions answered by an expert
Candid resume critique offers keen insights
Are you disqualifying yourself from opportunities
Time to revamp that 20-year-old resume
Tips for leveraging both online and offline networking
5 ways to answer the compensation requirement question
Overcoming being screened out due to years of experience and academic qualifications
Returning to the workforce as a retiree copy
Don’t let your past employer control your future employment
Quick resume review sheds light on how a candidate can better tell her story
Establishing a pull versus push strategy can help facilitate your job search
Simple steps to take before you decide to become the next member of The Great Resignation
Launch your 2022 job search the right way
Emerging from a hostile work environment and moving forward
Why defining your target and prioritizing your message is so important
Seek recommendations to overcome neutral references
How to chart a map for the language you need to speak to develop a targeted resume
Focus on what actually differentiates you from your competition
How can I better prepare myself for a potential layoff
Do you need to possess all job requirements to be a competitive applicant
Lack of job search success is often not a reflection of your abilities but rather how you are telling your story
A great resume can change the game for an entry-level candidate
Does a website add value to your professional candidacy and personal brand
When your recent graduation isn’t the key to your candidacy
Do I explain the reason for my decision to change careers
Taking a step back in your career to do what you love
How to figure out what you want to be when you “grow up”
Preparing for a live video interview
How to highlight transferable versus recent experiences
How to explain the skeletons in your job search closet
Company culture what is it and why does it matter
How to focus on relevant experience when building your personal brand
When do I disclose I have MS to a potential employer?
When is a creative approach appropriate on your resume?
When does a gap in employment become problematic
What is “opinion” and what is”expertise” when it comes to personal branding
Improving your chances for job search success as an out-of-state candidate
Functional, Chronological, Combination…which resume format is right for you
How to minimize the impact of recent job hops
Your most frequently asked personal branding questions answered
Optimizing your follow-up after applying for a job
Will only having completed one internship hinder my candidacy
Don’t let an under developed resume hurt your job search
What is right and wrong with the picture you are painting
Tips to avoid disqualification in a job application process
How can I get my resume noticed for a job title I have never held
What can digital networking do for me
How to handle short-term jobs on your resume
Is it time to pursue your dream job
Developing a resume to break into marketing
Questions to consider when determining what you want to be when you grow up
It doesn’t always matter that YOU think you can do the job…are you QUALIFIED for the job
Laid off? How to avoid common mistakes in building your brand
Apply personal branding best practices before reinventing your job search
Why is my work experience not helping me land a job interview
Answers to common personal branding questions
Don’t let these 3 questions derail your interview
It’s better to be competitive than overqualified when presenting your career history
How to tell a transferable story when returning to the workplace and changing careers
What personal branding rules apply to a young or emerging professional
Answers to your most frequent personal branding questions
How to promote your own post-retirement business and consulting venture
Why you do not have to be overly concerned about brief employment gaps
How to overcome not having a required degree during your job search
Making a transition following a COVID-19-related job loss
Preparing for what some consider to be the most challenging interview questions, part 2
Preparing for what some consider to be the most challenging interview questions
Storytelling as it relates to your professional brand
The potential impact of your online footprint on your career and job search
What adds value to the presentation of your candidacy
Building your brand as an emerging young professional
Telling your military story to a civilian audience
Use your cover letter to add value to your story
Steer focus away from the appearance of being a “job hopper”
Should your resume include all of your career experience
Getting “unstuck” and telling your professional story in a compelling manner
Best practices to elevate your brand
Stop thinking of your resume as a narrative of everything you have ever done
Presenting the right amount of experience is key
Upcoming 2020 grad wonders what her job search will look like amid COVID era
Predict the value you are positioned to contribute to your next employer
cover letter
How to leverage experience and education to boost your brand
How does your resume score
Turn around your job search with targeted direction
Transitioning from public service to private sector
Don't let outdated rules guide the presentation of your personal brand
Perform an emergency triage of your resume to diagnose its issues
Zoom, Skype, HireView, FaceTime, oh my…preparing for the inevitable virtual interview
Reduce the anxiety of change by being proactively preparing your brand
Out-of-date approaches destroy your candidacy as a competitive, informed hire
Weighing the benefit of closing a career “gap” versus presenting unrelated experience
How to present your career for a lower-level role to stay employed during COVID-19
Five questions to consider asking your interviewer
What is the interviewer really asking
Navigating a job search after a career hiatus
What is your resume really saying and not saying
How can I start an Employee Resource Group (ERG) at work
How to negotiate for more time off when job searching
Not ready to retire? How to find your encore career
Why education is rarely a key qualifier on your resume
Daughter seeks help for Mom struggling with her job search
Overcoming potential disqualifiers in presenting your personal brand copy
Differentiate your brand as an entry-level professional
Is your career experiencing the Groundhog Day effect?
Resume critique offers critical insight to improving candidate’s brand copy
Is your resume really saying what you think it is?
I graduated with a degree but can’t get a job! What am I doing wrong?
Could starting a blog or posting regularly to LinkedIn or other sites help or hurt my career?
Launch 2020 with a renewed vision of your brand
How to build a network beyond your peer group
Baby Boomer Prepares for Layoff and Personal Branding Process
What to do when you are told your resume is 'fine', but you know it is not
How to build a best practices brand for your dream job
How to use your resume to tell your story and sell your brand
What does a modern resume look like?
Strategically positioning your candidacy to overcome requirements
Workplace Burnout
Resume Reinvention - Storytelling and its connection to your brand
How do I find meaning in my work?
How to prepare for a video interview
Company culture what is it and why does it matter
Personal branding 101
How to get a job with limited or no experience
4 critical steps to ensure your resume contains keyword-rich content
Presenting a “competitive” image of your candidacy
May Makeover Series: Position yourself for a promotion
Professionalize your candidacy
May Makeover Series: Target your audience through keyword relevance
How do I know if a career coach is right for me
Understanding today’s resume rules
How do I develop leadership skills as a young professional
Do I need an internship to be a competitive entry-level candidate
Personality tests in the job search: Understanding your workplace DNA
What is the purpose of a qualifications summary
How do I expand my network
A multipotentialite explores the intersection of talents and passions
Top 3 benefits of being or having a mentor
Brand yourself by showing how you added value beyond expectations
Critical steps to preparing for a job interview
How to prepare for a career fair
How to Rise Above your Entry-Level Peers
Should I “dumb-down” my resume to get a job?
Personal Brand Makeover: What’s unique about me?
How to change your line of work mid-career
Top 5 recommendations for a New Year replete with career accomplishments
Value of keywords in preparing for an effective job search
How to avoid the common mistakes made on resumes
Dear Sam Live EP31 - Can you create a “general” resume?
Why do I need a degree to be qualified?
Turn your gig into your job
Dear Sam Live E30 - Should I leave a job I just started?
How to reduce the impact of an unrelated job on your resume
How to stand out during your college job fair
Navigating career transitions, additions, and losses
Dear Sam Live E29 - What To Do With Resume Gaps
Dear Sam Live E28 - Differentiating Your Candidacy
How to structure a resume as a mid-career professional
Can you create a “general” resume?
Should I leave a job I just started?
Differentiating your candidacy in a sea of graduates
How to overcome a job title that doesn’t match your job
Writing a resume for your target job
How to write a qualifications summary
Email etiquette for job seekers
How to handle a termination in a job interview
How to optimize your LinkedIn profile
Class is in session! Personal branding 101
Personal branding strategies to get interviews
How to transition from business owner to employee
What is a combination resume format?
How to get your first job out of college
Dear Sam Live E27 - What To Ask for When You are Laid Off
What to Ask for When You are Laid Off
Dear Sam Live E26 - Creating an ATS Friendly Resume
Finding the Time to Find a New Job
Ignore Outdated Resume Rules
The Difference Between Buzzwords and Keywords
Dear Sam Live E25 - Conducting an Effective Job Search
Job Search Mistakes
Advantages to Job Searching in the Summer
Dear Sam Live E24 - Avoiding Job Search Faux Pas
Job Interview
How to Highlight Foundational Roles on a Resume
Dear Sam Live E23 - How to Solicit and Highlight LinkedIn Recommendations
Dear Sam Live E22 - How to Prepare for a Job Interview
The Value of LinkedIn Recommendations
creative resume
writing a cover letter
Dear Sam Live E21 - How to Format a Resume
The Importance of Thank You Letters
write a resume
Dear Sam Live E20 - How to Write a Qualifications Summary Statement
resume summary statement
Dear Sam Live E19 - Steps to Take After Being Laid Off
Steps to Take After Being Laid Off
Dear Sam Live E18 - Ask a Resume Expert
When is the Right Time to Quit Your Job?
Resume Writing Tips
Skype Interview
Dear Sam Live E16 - 4 Simple Tips To Improve Your LinkedIn Profile
linkedin for job search
Dear Sam Live E15 - How To Use Social Media in Your Job Search
is social media bad
Stand out for an ATS
Dear Sam Live E14 - Age Discrimination In The Workplace
Dear Sam Live E13 - Elevator Speech
stop age discrimination
lost in your career
Dear Sam Live E12 - Resume Transformation
Sonya's Resume
Dear Sam Live E11 - The Power Of Networking
Dear Sam Live E10 - New Year New Job
plant coming to life
Introvert Networking
elevator pitch
termination letter
writing a resume
Nolan Branding - A Ladybug Design, Inc. Company.
Dear Sam Live E09 - Kelly: Certified Career Coach
job seeker
Job interview mistakes
Dear Live Sam E08 Resume Writing: The Show And Tell
Dear Sam Live E05 - Sam's Story
Dear Sam Live E04 - The #1 Way to Get a Resume Noticed
Dear Sam Live E03 - Keyword Mapping Exercise
resume font
job title
love resume
Tailor your resume to the job you want!
How to present an incomplete degree
LinkedIn: A Powerful Search Tool
overcoming challenges
Strategy Behind Job Searching
Does It Add Value Or Waste Time? CV Do's And Don'ts.
5 Key Ingredients For A "Top-Notch" Resume
3 Simple Tips To Help Your Job Search
personal branding
personal brand
resume rules
Dear Sam: I've been a full-time mom for 16 years with most of my early jobs in the retail arena. In 2014 I earned my bachelor’s degree in general studies and completed continuing education toward a Human Resources Certificate. The résumé I am attaching was completed by career services at my university. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated. — Wendy
Dear Sam: Do you ever reveal a learning disability on your résumé or in an interview? I have a 37-year-old daughter trained as a State Tested Nursing Assistant (STNA). She was recently released from her job—after 6 years and nearly perfect attendance—for actions that may or may not be related to her language-based learning disability...
career change
represent who you are
Dear Sam: I read your column very week and I like your advice on how to do resumes. I wonder if you could give me your advice on my resume, if it works the way I have it, or what do I need to do it to improve it.
Dear Sam: What are some of the common mistakes you see on resumes that can be easily avoided?
Dear Sam: Since graduating from college, I have yet to find a steady job; thus, I have held different types of jobs. I am afraid not to include all of them on my resume...
Dear Sam: I have had four interview requests within the past six weeks. While this is encouraging, the application process may be disqualifying me as a candidate.
Dear Sam: I read your resume tips each week and was wondering if you could provide some general information to orient me to interviews. I have not interviewed in 23 years so I feel a little lost as to what to expect. — Edward
Dear Sam: Since 2006, I have had a series of bad professional luck.
Dear Sam: I would like to change careers and was curious how I could have my volunteer experience be seen as actual work experience.
Dear Sam: I am 49 years of age, and for the past 7 years, I have been the senior plant manager of a small food processing plant.
Dear Sam: I have been on unemployment for more than eight months and have not landed a single interview!
Steven met me at an event I facilitated, an event he attended in order to learn how to craft an effective resume. After listening to my presentation and further reflecting on how he was going to present his experience on paper, he decided to contact me for help.

Steven had a varied background, mostly in the fitness industry. He had served as a program coordinator with a local branch of the YMCA in addition to running his own gym and personal training business for more than eight years. Steven had recently returned to school to complete his undergraduate degree—a degree he had started many years earlier—when, all of a sudden, his life had taken an unplanned turn.
my journey
Dear Sam: I am an RN with 45 years of experience with the last 10 years as an RN Case Manager. In January of this year, I retired temporarily due to my husband’s illness as I needed to oversee his care...
Dear Sam: How do I respond to a salary history request?
Dear Sam: I am trying to write my resume and am receiving conflicting advice on what to include. I am reading through job postings and the requirements for positions and attempting to ensure I include all of the requirements that are pertinent to my background. I wondered though, when a posting calls for a college degree—which I do not have—should I list my high school diploma? Also, I do not possess all of the technical skills required for some of the roles, but I am sure I can learn them quickly; what do I list in those instances? — Joe
Dear Sam: I have read several of your resume makeovers, but I guess I don't have the talent to make over mine...
Welcome to the Ladybug Design blog! This is where you will find my nationally syndicated ‘Dear Sam’ column—currently published in 40+ markets—along with our latest news, events, and of course…client love!