“Great coaching session the other day. I feel more prepared and confident to interview than I have in a LONG time”
It was a normal Thursday in my office by all accounts. There were calls to be made, calls to be returned, talent to recruit, emails to be written and emails to be returned, job descriptions to be written and more.
One special event on this particular Thursday was a scheduled call with a large company’s in-house counsel. Lawyers are all bad aren’t they? Well, I’ve run into my share of not-so-good lawyers but on this particular Thursday, I had a contract negotiation experience with a lawyer that I just have to share with you. She was outstanding!
I’ll call the lawyer Sue. Sue called at our agreed-upon time and the call was in motion. She asked me to talk to her about the issues I had with the contract she’d sent over. I started at the top and quickly got to a place in the contract where she was asking for 6 months and I offered 1 year. This move on my part threw Sue for a loop.
In her mind, I knew I’d just confused here logical thinking process. I offered something in a negotiation where I’m pretty sure Sue’s brain was ready to play defense. Instead, she got to say “Yes” and accept a concession she wasn’t expecting.
The next issue we got to was an issue where she was asking for $3,000,000 in coverage and I only had $1,000,000 to offer. We got through this part of our discussion in 5 minutes and the final number was $1,000,000.
Then we moved on to a “Guarantee” topic. Sue argued that my competitors were offering much more than I was willing to give. I suggested that her competitors (other companies in need of Cybersecurity talent) were offering much better terms than she was willing to give. This topic took a little bit more discussion than the previous topics but at the end of the discussion, we agree to terms and minutes later, a revised contract landed in my Inbox.
Did I “Win” this negotiation? Yes I did. Did Sue get to “Win” this negotiation? Yes she did. We both approached the negotiation with the mindset that a fair and balanced contract was our goal. This negotiation energized me for Thursday and I got to carry the energy into Friday.
Negotiation can be fun and energizing if you learn to approach the experience with the right mindset. Negotiating so that one party wins and the other party loses generally is not the best choice.
One more thing I’d like to share about my experience with Sue. An hour or so after our negotiation, I was surprised when Sue sent an invitation to me for us to connect on LinkedIn. I think the negotiation went well.
I love to negotiate!
My 1 Hour Resume Coaching service allows my clients to walk away with a new skill. As this testimonial states, I "teach" my clients how to build a resume that is both strategically written and written with the resume's audience in mind.
"I recently found myself dusting off my resume after eight years as I was looking for new employment and not knowing where to begin in this new job market. Colleagues and friends recommended for me to reach out to Jeff Snyder. Jeff's aim is to teach you "how to fish" versus doing the fishing for you. Jeff taught me how to strategically write my resume and also took the time to make sure I understood it. I am thankful to have been introduced to Jeff and I would highly recommend Jeff to anybody seeking to get their resume at a world class level for an executive job." IT Security, Privacy Manager
"Jeff, heartfelt thanks to you for reviewing what I thought was a good resume and then giving me the brutal truth. Here is my Michelangelo for you to disseminate if the need arises. That said, you will be getting a lot of cops calling using my name."
This is a flower that is currently blooming in my gardens at 8,500' in the Colorado Rockies. To me, this is one of the most unique flowers I've ever seen. I was lucky to get a picture of this one before yesterday's hail storm or before the deer got to it. The deer can clean every flower off of this plant in a minute or two when they're hungry.
The point in sharing this flower is to demonstrate just how unique it is. Maybe you don't think of yourself as a flower but you're this unique too. Demonstrated through one of the tools I use in my coaching, looking at a list of 34 traits that we all have in common, I would have to have 33,000,000 people take the same assessment in order to find two people whose 34 traits line up in the same order. Now that's unique!
What this means is that inside you right now is enough uniqueness to become great at something. If you haven't yet figured out what you have potential to be great at, what you have potential to become passionate about doing and what you have potential to become great at when you share your giftedness with others, today would be a great day to call me.
This flower is not in my garden. It is in the Pike National Forest near Woodland Park, CO. Is this flower any less interesting than the blue one above it? No! This flower is unique in its own way...just like you! Both flowers serve the purpose of providing beauty and brightening up their surroundings but they're entirely different. This is how you could be if you were to slow down to figure out what you "Should" do with your life rather than settling for what you "Can" do.
This flower is a Columbine. It is the state flower of Colorado. I photographed these columbines very close to the yellow flower shown above. Are they any less beautiful than the yellow or blue flowers shared above? Now! They're all beautiful. They all brighten up their surroundings and they are all unique.
Human beings are just as unique and we're all built do to something special. You may think you know what you were built for and you may think you're in the right professional role. For some people this is true. For most of the US workforce, Gallup's surveys of the US workforce suggest that approximately 70% of people who go to work every day are disengaged in their work.
This group of people goes to work and reluctantly punches the clock to check in. They can't wait to punch the clock to leave for the day. They produce average output and they're only marginally engaged in the work they're paid to do.
The other part of Gallup's year-upon-year survey of the US workforce shows that approximately 30% of the US workforce is engaged in their work. These are the people who keep our economy ticking. These are the people who generally love what they do and they're great at whatever it is that they do. If you'd like to join this 30% group so you too can passionately love what you do and you too can produce great output, there is no time better than he present to give me a call.
I'll lead you to an understanding of exactly and precisely how you are uniquely built. We'll compare the way you're built to the work you are currently doing. We'll compare the way you are uniquely built to what you could be doing to excel in the future. We'll call this your career road map.
I love to help my clients get from where they are to where they want to go
"Jeff does a great job with every service he offers whether it is resume coaching, emotional intelligence improvement, LinkedIn coaching, etc. He is the ultimate professional you want on your team!"
Every once in a while a blog just falls into my lap. Today is one of those days.
I assisted the person who wrote what you're about to read as a testimonial with his resume a couple of years ago. To me, the event of helping this person with his resume was like planting a seed. When I am fortunate to hear from my coaching clients to learn about the experiences they've had after completing coaching work with me, I get to actually see the results of the seeds that are planted when we first met to do coaching work together. This feedback makes my day!
"Hi Jeff, I just read your article "Perfect Answers to the Most Important Interview Questions" and I have to say, it was spot on. I recently got a job in healthcare after a long career in publishing. After hearing countless times in interviews "well you don't have experience in this industry..." I had enough. In this interview I was told that while my resume is great (thanks to you!) they were interviewing other candidates with good experience in healthcare.
I say, yes, you are correct. I don't have healthcare experience, but at one point I had no experience with PCI or Security for that matter. Don't hire me or anyone else based on what they have done in the past. Hire someone based on the potential that they have. And I got the job.
Six months later, I have to say, it really didn't matter at all that I had no HIPAA experience. It's all different jargon to achieve the same goal; protect the data."
The career journey you're on will likely not be a straight line. You'll travel a path that presents twists and turns. You'll find yourself having to make right turns, left turns and occasionally backward steps before you can move forward properly.
In Steve's case, he invested in himself to get help with his resume. Writing a resume was not Steve's greatest gift but I can tell you that he is a rock star when it comes to building information security programs that work.
An email landed in my Inbox this morning. The title of this blog showed up in the marketing email that came to me.
This email grabbed my attention not because I am looking for interview question advice but because it bothers me. When I talk to prospective clients about resume coaching, I am sure to tell them that I’m not going to teach them anything that is slick, fancy or gimmicky. What I do coach my resume clients on is how to build a resume that is clean, clear and logical.
When I coach candidates on interviewing, I do not coach anybody to deliver slick, fancy or gimmicky answers. I coach candidates to be brutally honest and to not embellish.
This morning, one of my career coaching clients called and we talked through his upcoming interview. He told me that he was a bit nervous about not having everything the employer was asking for in the job description. He told me that he didn’t have GLBA and HIPAA compliance background for example. However, he did have PCI compliance background.
My suggestion was for the candidate to focus on what he has that is similar to GLBA and HIPAA and to also know where the gaps exist between what he has and what GLBA and HIPAA require him to know. Be proactive in telling the prospective employer that you know what you don't yet know. Give examples of how you have addressed learning curves in the past and demonstrate to the employer that you've already started thinking about how you'll address the learning curve you'll face if they were to hire you.
So what do I think a perfect answer is to an interview question? An answer that demonstrates clearly and concisely what one’s experience is and is not. Most employers want the truth, not some kind of contrived answer. Contrived answers given to a highly intelligent hiring decision maker will get you introduced to the exit door very quickly.
Today I’m thankful for a new career performance coaching client who is coming on board with Jeff Snyder Coaching. She is one of many rising Information Security / Cyber Security stars I’ve been fortunate to work with. She is a leader of the future. What better contribution can I possibly make than to help to prepare future leaders?
I’m excited because I believe the future of Information Security / Cyber Security is now in the hands of millennial aged security professionals more than any other group. Millennial security professionals who apply themselves and who strive for greatness in their performance have so much possibility ahead of them.
Millennial Talent…Coming Soon!
One of my millennial aged coaching clients is a true rising star in the information security / cyber security profession. He has a Math and Computer Science degree with a Master’s in Information Assurance. His scores on common certification exams in the security, risk, compliance and privacy realms are some of the highest recorded scores on the planet. His unique leading strengths include Strategic, Futuristic, Competition, Activator and Ideation. He is wicked smart and he is doing what is necessary to prepare him to be a future CISO despite that fact that he is still in his late 20s. It has been an honor, pleasure and an energizing blast for me to have the privilege of coaching this rising star.
Another one of my millennial aged female coaching clients is currently positioned in an information security management role in one of the world’s most widely known high-tech brands. She too is a rising star. Her leading strengths include Achiever, Futuristic, Focus, Input and Competition. She came to me after having had lunch with senior executives in this global company. They told her that they wanted her on their team and asked her to write a job description she’d be willing to sign up for. I helped her to write her job description. We wrote it around her natural strengths. There is a 100% chance that she can hit a grand slam when working in a job that taps into all of her top strengths.
The Common Threads They Share
What these two future CISOs have in common is that they are rocket science smart. They’re ultra-competitive. They grew up with technology. They can’t stand the “because we’ve always done it this way” answers. They are gifted with deep analytical skills. Not only are they highly intelligent, they’re built to create new innovations and to get new innovations off the ground. They’ll always find ways to win. They both came to me to fine-tune their performance and they’ll come back again in the future when they reach the next opportunity to stretch and grow beyond their peers.
Can you understand why I’m so excited to coach these kinds of rock stars? If your company is in a hiring mode, these kinds of people do exist but they’re gainfully employed and they’re handsomely rewarded. You need an outside the box strategy to get to this kind of talent.
I was wrong
When I first launched my career coaching and executive coaching services several years ago, I was sure that my client base would be current CISOs and CSOs who are already in place. I was sure that like me, the current CISOs and CSOs would all want to learn of ways they could improve their performance. This theory of mine worked in some cases but not as often as I thought it would.
My Futuristic Strength
My futuristic thought process envisioned a world where CISOs and CSOs were all invited to the board room table. While this is happening in some places, it isn’t happening as frequently as I would like to see it happening and I’m afraid that it isn’t happening as frequently as current CISOs and CSOs would like for it to happen.
I still see a future where CISOs and CSOs are a regular part of the board room package. What I’ve had to change in my vision is the timing and the actual people who will have this experience. What I didn’t see coming for my coaching practice was millennial aged security professionals coming to me for coaching and mentoring more often than their current bosses.
Great News If You’re a Millennial
Here’s the great news for millennial aged security professionals who step up right now for coaching and personal development assistance. My strengths coaching doesn’t put you in a box or a quadrant. You get to be 1 in 33,000,000 unique. We’ll figure out what you have the potential to be great at and we’ll build a strategic plan to move you in that direction.
When it comes to emotional intelligence, emotional intelligence coaching and behavioral change coaching will come much easier to younger people. Behavioral change is one of the most difficult endeavors a grown adult can face. Statistically, emotional intelligence is naturally already on the rise for people in their 20s, 30s and 40s. When we work together to improve your emotional intelligence, we’re ultimately working together to improve your behavior. Behavior is much more important as your career progresses than your IQ alone.
Ready To Be a Rising Star?