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Career Coaches

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Information about Career Coaches and resources to find or enhance careers. Links to find Career Coaches. This blog does not constitute endorsement of any Career Coach or resource. Perform your due-diligence before choosing someone.



Copyright © Sandra Jackson, JobTownResumes.com, 06/29/2014.All rights reserved.  



A Love Letter To Job Seekers

A Love Letter To Job Seekers

A Love Letter to Hard-Working Job Seekers and Employees.

  • You Are More Amazing Than You Think.
  • Resume Writers Are VERY Nosy.
  • Make Your Resume Be A Job Coach.
  • Makeover Surprise! Yes, That’s Really You.
  • “The Working Man’s The Tough Guy.”

“There are eight million stories in the Naked City.” This line from the 1930’s film ‘Naked City’ and, more recently, Jay Z’s rap song “Empire State of Mind,” always pops into my head after an interview with a new resume client. Many of you may not be familiar with this 1930′s film noir movie and one of TV’s popular 1950’s crime series (think Grandma’s version of “Law & Order”). But you may have heard that line in rap artist/entrepreneur Jay Z’s lyrics from “Empire State of Mind” (featuring Alicia Keyes).

A Love Letter to Job Seekers. You Are More Amazing Than You Think

A Love Letter to Job Seekers. You Are More Amazing Than You Think


I am a Resume Writer who loves movies … AND people’s stories. I have loved ALL my client’s stories. The thing that strikes me when I am interviewing to write resumes is that most everyday people don’t think of themselves as interesting. They downplay their experience on a resume, either because they don’t want to “blow their own horn,” or because they are too close to the subject to evaluate their accomplishments, or maybe they just haven’t asked themselves the right questions. But you are interesting! Hear me when I say, “There are millions of interesting stories in the naked city!”

Love Letter to Job Seekers.Nosey.dog_nose_by_celeryu-d30audp2. RESUME WRITER’S ARE VERY NOSEY!

Your resume writer should be a VERY curious person! Interviewing for a resume, is by definition, a confidential process. I’m going to find out stuff by questioning and, yes, even by intuition, that even your Mom may not know! If your resume interviewer is asking the right questions they get a window into what you are proud of, your philosophy of work, what is important to you, your industry core competencies, what colleagues and bosses think of you, if you are innovative, creative, thrive under pressure, etc. The average person has NOT always considered every one of the questions a resume writer asks nor have they organized them into sections that show off the whole picture. Everyone is different and there are millions of stories in the naked city!


Here’s the deal: don’t take your resume out every 3 years and dust it off. Shoot! Thumb-tack that thing to your home office wall and start making notes on it! Review it every 3 to 6 months. Every time you look at it, think, “What would look great on my resume?” and then do it. Update your resume EVERY YEAR. Each year, assess what you want to do and what would look great on your resume. Make it a fluid work in progress urging you forward.

  • Visualize your future.
  • Determine the continuing education you want.
  • Find mentors and professional job coaches for the next step.
  • Search the internet for your job title. Read what you find.
  • Join professional organizations.
  • Network  like crazy and ask questions.
  • Pick the brains of people who are where you want to be.
  • Read your industry’s news.
  • Be courageous and reach for what you want.


It is gratifying for a resume writer to take the job seeker’s information and craft it into a working document that demonstrates experience and capabilities to potential employers. But the best part of the experience is when the resume also demonstrates to the job seeker, themselves, just how amazing, interesting, and capable they are. A good resume makeover actually surprises some clients and gives them a new found faith in themselves.

Love Letter to Job Seekers.WomanFlyAmong my clients have been stunt women for major movies who are looking for a career change, graphic artists of the “Mad Men” genre, clients who have coordinated high-profile and complicated foreclosures on celebrity multimillion dollar properties, domestic violence counselors, social workers, selfless nurses, accountants, hotel events coordinators handling venues for bands and athletes, sales people, and information technology experts on the cutting edge of innovation, a successful restaurant manager who is now pursuing his passion for space technology, job recruiters who fill homeland security and FBI openings, real estate appraisers handling multimillion dollar properties, empty nest Mom’s courageously pursuing brand new lives and loves, football coaches, and an architect whose passion is leading liturgical communities in the unique design and construction of worship spaces. “There are millions of stories in the naked city.” Every one of my clients has a story and every one of them is amazing.

Love Letter to Job Seekers.stuntperson.clip-art-circus-600589 (3)       Lover Letter to Job seekers.Workplace_Diversity       Love Letter to Job Seekers.architect.construction_worker_4


You knew I had to give you another movie quote, right? In ‘A Bronx Tale,’ Lorenzo Anello (Robert De Niro) said to his son, who seemed to falling under the spell of a flashy neighborhood gangster, the following (one of my favorite working man quotes):

… try and get up every morning day after day, and work for a living. Let’s see him try that. Then we’ll see who the real tough guy is. The working man’s the tough guy. Your father (*and your mother*) is a tough guy.

Love Letter to Job Seekers.You Are Tough.BronxTale.tumblr_m8l6qbsCmk1rdotqro1_400

 Kind Regards (and, yes, Love), Sandy, Your Resume Writer



5 Quick Tips About Choosing College Majors & Careers

Copyright © Sandra A. Jackson, JobTownResumes.com, 04/07/2014. All rights reserved.  

ACK! I Don’t Like My College Career Major. NOW WHAT?

In Chinese, the word for crisis also means opportunity.

5 Tips for Choosing College Career Majors.5.

  • PICKING A MAJOR (Career Tests & Workbooks)

Genius without education is like silver still in the mine. ~ Ben Franklin

My incredibly smart great-niece just went off to college with a full scholarship some 3000 miles away from home last year and is experiencing the inevitable boredom that comes with those first couple years and, what feels even more unsettling to her, questioning the major she originally chose. The first blush of real freedom is setting in and the classes seem a boring rehash of high school. In fact, it feels like she already knows all that stuff the professors are feeding her in class. It’s Déjà vu all over again! Now what? Her plight inspired this article.

Take heart college students.      5 Tips for Choosing College Career Majors.1.


“What to Expect” is a great informational article for parents about what’s happening with their student (academically and emotionally) the first year of college, broken down month-by-month from September thru August of the next year. It includes suggestions about what they can do to help their students. But it is also a great article that any college student should read. Click on the link “What to Expect,” appearing on University of Michigan website.


The consensus from college experts such as Randall Hansen, PhD, in “Your First Year of College: 25 Tips To Help You Survive and Thrive Your First Year and Beyond.”, and from my daughter (a PhD candidate who has been teaching freshmen students the past several years) and from my husband who was a college professor and coach for 40 years is as follows: “Don’t worry about majors and careers the first two years of college.” You don’t really have to pin it down until the 3rd year of college after your general education requirements are fulfilled.      5 Tips for Choosing College Career Majors.2.

The trick is to get through the boring first two years and complete your boring-as-heck general ed requirements. The general ed requirements are going to be a huge “snooze” since they are basically a rehash of high school. They ALWAYS are. It’s a common complaint from College Freshmen. And it’s most intense in February, March, and April if you live in snowy climates. Students are stuck inside. They even have a term for it: “cabin fever.”                 5 Tips for Choosing College Career Majors.4.

The “fix” to the boring-classes conundrum is lots of class variety, time-management, and staying engaged on campus. Have fun with the elective classes and buckle down on the required courses until you get to the real-deal classes in year 3. Get involved in campus activities such as student government and active clubs. Check in with your campus Career Center and your Counselors. The more you get involved in off-campus activities, the more you lose your focus.

My daughter, the freshman college teacher, pointed out,

People think college is going to be sooooo much more exciting than high school but the workout is the same. Getting involved in campus activities is good to do; but really, ‘BORED IS BORED.’ Part of going to college is about managing expectations.

Boring work still HAS to be done, but you can also start to branch out and see if you like some things you didn’t know you liked. Try sampling drama classes or other classes that might interest you. Basically browse the electives. College students are going to goof-off and have fun, period; but the goal is to keep a strong link to the school and be sure to complete enough of the requirements to be in good standing when it is time to settle on a major. 


College has plenty of classes to offer that you DON’T already know everything about. Sit down with the catalog and circle the classes you would take if you could take ANYTHING you wanted to. Then, take some of them with your other classes … take any classes that will rattle the cage.


If you haven’t chosen a major or are unsure, DON’T be in a sweat to choose a major these first two years. There are lots of classes to sample before you have to make up your mind. Choose ANY classes you think you might like to sample different areas, but buckle down on the general ed requirements. Don’t lose focus with off-campus distractions.

(a) Campus Resources

Visit your campus Career Center for help in determining what careers might be a match for your personality and skills. They usually have tests and other resources that help you discover careers that match your interests. Visit the campus counseling office for some academic counseling. Let them know you are bored with the general education requirement classes and see if they have any helpful suggestions.

(b) Career & Personality Tests to Help in Choosing a Career/Major:    5 Tips for Choosing a College Career Major.8

There are a host of personality/ career tests on the internet … some you pay for and some free. I personally tried all three of the following free tests and liked the “16 Personalities” test the best. I found it to be the most accurate. The “Free Career Test” and “What Career is Right for Me?” are pretty good too.

  1. 16 Personalities (click on the link to take the test)

Take the test and then click through to your personality type. It takes you to a descriptive page. At the bottom of the page it gives you categories: Overview, Key Traits, Relationships, Friendships, Parenthood, Careers, and Workplace. Click on each of the categories to get the specifics. It is pretty good.

2. Free Career Test (click on the link to take the test)

Take the Test, then click on “Print Your Results.” Don’t pay any attention to the “Find a School” stuff.

3. What Career is Right for Me? (click on the link to take the test)

Click on “Start the Career Test Now” and answer questions. It will give you a list of careers you may be suited for at the end.

4. Color Quiz (click on the link to take the test)

This is a fun personality/career test supposedly based on science from color psychologists.

(c) Books to Help You Find Your Career/Major     5 Tips for Choosing College Career Majors.9.

The consensus among Career Coaches is that “What Color is Your Parachute” is still the best book for finding careers that fit your interests.

1. “What Color Is Your Parachute? For Teens, 2nd Edition: Discovering Yourself, Defining Your Future,” by Carol Christen and Richard Bolles

2. What Color Is Your Parachute Workbook: How to Create a Picture of Your Ideal Job or Next Career,” by Richard Bolles

(d) Summer Internships

Test the waters for possible careers by working an internship during the summers. Contact your campus career center, family, friends, and do a ‘summer internship’ job search on Indeed.com for your geographical area. Click on Indeed.com, then type ‘summer internship’ in the “What” box and the geographical area in the “Where” box. Click on “Search.”


  1. “Unhappy First Semester?” This article is written by a college counselor about first & second year college doldroms and possible solutions.
  2. “10 Things No One Tells You About Your Freshman Year Of College”
  3. “5 Tips for College Students to Make the Most of Their College Experience.”
  4. “Your First Year of College: 25 Tips To Help You Survive and Thrive Your First Year and Beyond.” ~ by Randall Hansen, PhD. But check #14, #17, #21, #22, and that little box on the top right side: “Top 10 Reasons College Students Leave.”  (He charges for his tests.)


This phase of college will take some tenacity.    VF01

We wouldn’t ask why a rose that grew from the concrete has damaged petals; in turn, we would all celebrate its tenacity, we would all love its will to reach the sun. – Tupac

Stay focused on the end game.    5 Tips for Choosing College Career Majors.14.

So many times, it happens too fast
You trade your passion for glory
Don’t lose your grip on the dreams of the past
You must fight just to keep them alive.

It’s the Eye of the Tiger. ~ Apollo Creed, Rocky

Even that old Greek philosopher, Aristotle, recognized the “snooze” alarm in education:      5 Tips for Choosing College Career Majors.15.

The roots of education are bitter, but the fruit is sweet. ~ Aristotle

Kind Regards, Sandy, Your Resume Writer

Images by Shutterstock and Bing Free Vector Images.

“Help Me … Help You!” Career Coaches and a Path to Success.

Call or e-mail me. Let’ Get Started on Your Resume!

Copyright © Sandra A. Jackson, JobTownResumes.com, 2013. All rights reserved.*

How to Find and Choose a Career Coach

  • How to find one.
  • How to choose one.
  • How they can help you in your career.
  • Links to the associations, lists, and questions to ask.

Jerry McGuire.0“Help Me …

Help You!” 

That was unarguably one of the most famous lines in Jerry McGuire, the 1996 movie with Tom Cruise, Cuba Gooding Jr., and Renee Zellwegger about a sports agent who has a moral epiphany and is fired for expressing it. He decides to put his new philosophy to the test as an independent with the only athlete who stays with him. Remember that line? And the most famous line in the movie? “Show me the Money!” Classic. And don’t forget, “You had me at ‘Hello.’”

Jerry went on to say, “We live in a … cynical world. … a cynical world. And we work in a business of tough competitors.”

Great lines. And they speak to a lot of jobs and careers in need of help. In the most basic way, that’s what career coaches do. Collaborate with you to get you where you want to go. And you have to really participate … you have to help them help you.

MovieNight.il_570xN.194492300Let’s explore this concept with a few Career Coach scenarios for you! Here are the possible plots for YOUR movie … you being the confused, adorable hero, of course:

PLOT #1: You want a promotion, but you can’t seem to get one. You took a flying leap and ran into a career wall. But you aren’t quite sure how to fix it. Steve or Mary or Elroy, have already gotten a promotion. You are saying to yourself, “I’m able to leap over tall desks in a single bound, save several days in row, and make designer coffee with that milk foam thingy. I think I’ve done everything right, so what’s wrong?” By the way, Sport, can you bring me a cup of that designer coffee while I talk to Mary?

PLOT #2: You hate your job and/or you hate your career and don’t know what to do about it. You are, right now, saying to yourself, “Have I really spent years and thousands of dollars preparing for a job swinging through theater ceilings in a cape and half a face mask? Am I STUCK in this purgatory forever?” (Ok, so maybe this scenario is a little overly dramatic, but you get the point.)

PLOT #3: You are getting ready to graduate from college and you are saying to yourself, “I want to go to Italy and be a top fashion designer, 6 months top. But I’m not sure how to do it.” Uh …. Ok. That’s the spirit, kid.

In ANY of these movie plots, in steps the all-knowing scruffy sidekick (your Career Coach) to guide you to your goals. You come to the crossroads, barely escape the devil, and walk into the sunset with that quirky romantic partner and the funny little dog while the credits roll. (Well … maybe they can’t do ALL that, but they can get you to get your career going in the right direction.)

video-camera-clip-art1THE 411 ON


Career coaches help you figure out how to go about attaining your goals. Some are certified career counselors and some are not. Not all states require certification. They will help you identify and explore career choices. They guide you through the job search process. The career coach/counselor you choose should be qualified and provide clear information about services and fees. Check the National Career Development Association’s Guidelines for Selecting a Career Counselor.

The cost isn’t inexpensive. Career coaches charge anywhere from $50 to $200 an hour.

To find a qualified career coach, you can check the National Career Development Association’s Find A Counselor page, or any organization that certifies career professionals, such as the International Coach Federation (ICF). The ICF provides independent certification that is the benchmark for the professional coaching industry.  College graduates can check their college career office for referrals. And don’t forget to ask friends, colleagues and relatives for referrals to any career coaches with which they have worked.

Here is an article from CBS Money Watch about Life/Career Coaches:  “The Top 10 Professional Life Coaching Myths.” This article actually covers career coaches, executive coaches, and life coaches.

And the Huff Post Business Section has a great article entitled, “13 People Who Prove it’s Never Too Late to Career Change.


Here is a short list of career coaches to choose from. This is by no means a comprehensive list. There are thousands of career coaches across the country. These links will take you to sites owned by other parties. These links are provided as a convenience and providing these links is NOT an endorsement. Career coaching is a very personal service, and everyone’s needs are different. Jobtown Resumes and Sandy Sidebar Blog make no representation as to the nature of the services they will provide to you.

Do you have a Career Coach you would like to recommend? Please send me the information in the comment section below. We’ll add them to our list of referrals.

 1. National Career Development Association’s List of Coaches: Find A Counselor

2. Stanford Business School List of Career Coaches on their Alumni Page


It will be up to you to determine whether any of the coaches have the appropriate skills and experience to meet your needs. To help with this screening process, the Stanford University School of Business has suggested interview questions below.


  1. What is your coaching process and methodology?
  2. What key topics are covered in the sessions?
  3. What self-assessment tools are used? Is there a separate fee for self-assessment?
  4. What are the benefits of a coaching relationship?
  5. What type of individuals are within the area of your expertise? (Job change, executives, job reentry, etc.)
  6. What is your level of experience and what is your track record?
  7. What are your coaching credentials?
  8. What if I don’t live in the same city?  Can I go through the coaching process by phone and/or email?
  9. What kind of time commitment is involved outside of the 1:1 sessions? (Hours per week? Is there homework involved?)
  10. How often will we meet? (Weekly or monthly)  How long? (30 min, 1hr, etc.)
  11. How accessible are you?  Can I call anytime or do I need an appointment? What is your preferred method of contact? (E-mail or phone?)
  12. How many total sessions do your think you’ll need?
  13. How much do you charge?
  14. Do you have references available?



See? I told you I had the real deal for you. Now, get out there and “SHOW ME THE MONEY!” Naw. I’m just kiddin’. You had me at ‘Hello.’

Kind Regards, Sandy, Your Resume Writer


GO FORTH AND PROSPER!  Oh wait. That’s “Live long and prosper.” ~ Spock


*Note: “While these blogs are humorous in nature, make no mistake about it, career development and job hunting is serious business. It takes research, networking, and knowledge of what employers are looking for to land the position you really want. These blogs attempt to incorporate all of the above. My intent is to make you smile, but give you serious tools to get where you want to be. Hope you enjoy!” ~ Sandy Jackson, JobTownResumes.com. Call or email me and let’s get started on your resume!

Images by Shutterstock and Bing free vector images.