July 6, 2018

Looking for a job is hard enough, but looking for a job in one city while you’re living in another is even harder. Here’s what to do if you find yourself in this long-distance scenario:

1. Focus On One Area

Unless you have a specific job or industry in mind and are willing to move anywhere, concentrate on one geographical area at a time. Make sure to investigate salary ranges in this region so you know what’s appropriate.

2. Use Social Networking Sites

The internet really pays off for long-distance searches. Use Facebook, LinkedIn, an...

July 5, 2018

Last week, I talked with Katie Couric for a segment called Jobless in America on This clip highlights my mantra: Stop looking for job and start looking for a person. The right person will lead you to the right job.

Over 80% of All Jobs Are in the Hidden Job Market

In order to tap into them, you’ve got to get out there and start talking to people. Hone your elevator pitch and let people know who you are, what you can do for them, and what you’re looking for.

Break Down Your Overwhelming Job Transition Into Bite-Sized...

July 4, 2018

Here’s my #1 secret for getting the job you really want, in this or any economy: Don’t apply for jobs you don’t want.

“I Got a Job Offer But I’m Waiting To Hear From My Dream Employer”

Over and over, my clients come to me with the same dilemma: They’ve received offers for jobs they don’t really want to take, and haven’t heard back yet about the jobs they really want. They don’t want to say no to a job offer, but they also don’t want to burn any bridges.

My Question: “Why Were You Applying For Jobs You Don’t Want?”

I know—you need a jo...

July 3, 2018

In a conversation with Katie Couric for a segment called Jobless in America on, I was asked the “Nose Ring” question. “Can I wear my nose ring to the interview?” is a real question I’ve been asked by many job-seekers I counsel, which is why it became the title of my book.

Nose Rings Aside, The Issue Is Understanding Company Culture

It’s a great question because it’s really about how to present yourself professionally when you’re job-hunting. Whether you have a nose ring or not, the issue is understanding the culture...

July 3, 2018

When you’re job-hunting, there’s nothing less professional than having to write your email address on a dirty napkin or someone else’s business card. Here’s what you need to know if you’re on the market:

1. You’ve Got To Have A Business Card—Even Before You’re In Business
This is one of my cardinal rules. The response from recent grads and other job seekers is always the same: “But what do I put on it? I don’t have a job.” How are you going to get one if people don’t know how to reach you to funnel opportunities your way? Having a...

June 30, 2018

Negotiating salary is not high on anyone’s list of fun things to do, and yet it’s one of the most important things you can do when considering a job offer. The more you negotiate, the more you’re likely to get—and I can assure you: if you don’t ask, you won’t get. Be prepared and know what your deal-breakers are. There’s always room to negotiate, as long as you are tactful and respectful and don’t appear to be giving ultimatums. Particularly in this economy, there may be more room for barter than you think.

What’s Important to You...

June 29, 2018

You should never be sitting home while you’re looking for a job. Never mind the fact that it’s not good for morale to be home sending your resume hurtling into the black void of cyberspace—you need to be out there, gaining skills and experience and meeting people who can lead you to the right opportunity. One great way to get your foot in the door is by temping—but not randomly. Don’t just sign up for any agency and take any jobs they give you.

Be Strategic! Accept Only Assignments That Advance Your Plan

Once you know what industry...

June 28, 2018

Most people think there are two kinds of interviews: job and informational. But recruiters and hiring managers report that some job seekers are trying to have another kind: I call it the exploratory interview, and it’s a big mistake.

When the interviewer for a sales position asks, “Why do you want to work in sales?” you might say honestly but tragically “Sales is one option, but I’m also considering marketing.” You think you’re being flexible, but you’re digging your own grave. When you apply for a job, you have to convince the int...

June 27, 2018

How long should my job search take? This is a question I’m asked all the time. It reminds me of when I was teaching and my students would ask how long the paper I had just assigned needed to be. Maybe they just wanted to see me roll my eyes and say, “Long enough to answer the question.” And, so, my answer to you is this: How long do you have?

How Long Can You Afford to Search Before Getting Stressed About Paying Bills?

This answer is different for everyone, as it depends entirely on each person’s financial situation. Can you afford...

June 25, 2018

Dear Ellen,

Despite the warning signs that I had no forms to fill out when I started my job, I later realized that I was being misclassified as an independent contractor—as opposed to an employee—by my boss. That was three years ago.  I’ve had no social security, FICA, sick or vacation days since then. I know the IRS now has the SS-8 form to address these issues, but I’m uneasy about filling it out behind his back. Should I just ask to be treated as an employee? Or file the form and move on?


Confused Non-Contractor


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