Tuesday, December 20, 2011

How to Use Charisma During Job Searches and Interviews to Increase Your Hiring Opportunities



In November 2011, the unemployment rate reportedly dropped to 8.6% from 9% (Izzo, 2011). For those who were able to secure a job, this was good news. However, for the millions of Americans still searching for employment, the news did not move the needle one iota. The pain and despair of perpetual unemployment for job seekers can be disheartening to say the least. However, there are a few tips and tactics job seekers can enlist to enhance their charisma during job searches and interviews. Although many employers take the “Don’t call us, we’ll call you” approach, job seekers can obtain an edge by developing their charisma. Historically, charismatic leaders have performed best during times of uncertainty.
During job searches, seize any opportunity for personal contacts and connections. Employers go to luncheons, business forums, and conferences to network and share their knowledge. Job seekers, who stay informed by perusing calendars in business newspapers and chronicles for upcoming events, can establish connections by merely going to these venues. Comedic film maker Woody Allen reportedly said that Ninety percent of life is just showing up. Over time, this statement has been transformed to say 90% of success is merely showing up. If you relentlessly show up and creatively engage employers, your odds of landing a job increase.
When making contacts, use charisma and the art of engagement. It is understandable that an individual who has been out of work for a considerable amount of time will not be the most confident and engaging. However, if you are attempting to impress employers, it is imperative that you become a great actor when lacking enthusiasm. People respect strength over weakness and empowerment over begging. Mentally determine that you are in business for yourself and create inexpensive business cards highlighting your expertise. By operating as a free agent, you stress your abilities as a contractor looking for opportunities, which provides you leverage in creating alliances. By asking “open-ended” questions that require extensive responses, as you represent yourself as a problem solver, you create memorable experiences that tap into the employer’s emotions and intellect.
During job interviews, give employers a snap shot of what working with you would be like. When President Obama was campaigning to get elected, he created images that gave the American people a sense of what he would be like as president. Obama’s airplane had his logo attached to it reminiscent of Air Force One. He would create opportunities to go abroad where throngs of crowds would gather to hear him speak creating the image of having Foreign Affairs experience. Every Obama campaign tactic allowed Americans to feel comfortable with a potential Obama Administration. By conducting yourself as if you are already a part of the company (Having done your research about the company), you give the employer a sense of the benefits for hiring you.
Use stories, animation, and passion to persuade employers. Typical interview questions begin with “Tell me a time when you…” prompting you to share relevant experiences that speak to your job qualifications and ability to fit into the corporate setting. By realizing that your performance is an audition for a part in the company, you should make every effort to draw an employer in with your enthusiasm. Many individuals operate at the bare minimum, but energetic people inspire and motivate others toward excellence. By demonstrating a proven track record of accomplishments, you encourage employers to want to hire you as an asset to the company.
During these uncertain times, there are no quick fixes to securing a job. However, by embracing the notion that charisma entails adopting the rules of engagement and a strategic mindset separates you from competitors. Throughout the annals of history, charismatic leaders have used sheer personality, determination, and fortitude to achieve a mission when no one else believed in the feasibility of their efforts. By following the precepts used by charismatic leaders, you can accomplish your mission of finding your ideal job.

References:
Izzo, P. (2011 Dec. 2). Why did the unemployment rate drop? Wall Street Journal (online). Retrieved from: http://blogs.wsj.com/economics/2011/12/02/why-did-the-unemployment-rate-drop-5/





Monday, December 12, 2011

How to Develop Charismatic Leadership Skills


Although there is a shortage of effective leaders in the marketplace, there is even more of a shortage of charismatic leaders. The recent death of Apple’s Steve Jobs not only represented an end of an era, but the passing of a charismatic leader who made technology sexy. To be able to add personality to inanimate objects could only stem from the imagination of a charismatic leader. However, there are a few things an aspiring leader can cultivate in developing charismatic leadership skills.
1. - Charismatic leaders are great innovators. Innovation comes through having a preternatural curiosity about how systems work and uncovering the gaps that make systems less efficient. Using Jobs as an example, he saw that Pop culture was influencing the behavior of individuals. Although technology had to have a utilitarian value attached to it, it also needed to be attractive and engaging. Taking cues from the fashion, entertainment, and automotive industries, charismatic leaders discover the latent desires of consumers and fulfill these desires with objects of affection. To develop your charisma, passionately focus on a challenge within your industry and turn solving problems into a mission. You will gain a following by evangelizing, writing, and developing practical solutions to problems.
2. - Charismatic leaders are introspective. Charismatic leaders spend a lot of time reading, thinking, and synthesizing disparate ideas. Although, charismatic leaders are viewed as “great people” persons, a lot of their time is spent pondering ideas in solitude. Charismatic leaders define themselves by their performance. In the movie, “A Beautiful Mind” with Russell Crowe, John Nash had an insatiable desire to create an idea that would gain him recognition and distinction. Many charismatic leaders are similarly motivated. By pondering and sharing the ideas of personal unresolved and unfulfilled aspirations, charismatic leaders become more engaging to adoring participants. By spending more time reveling in the field of ideas, you become more imaginative and heroic in your pursuits.
3. - Charismatic leaders speak with specificity. Although charismatic leaders are noted for passionate and effective oratory, it is their ability to speak with specificity and detail that makes them magnetic. By providing clear, precise, and practical information, employees are able to see their role in an overarching vision. If you begin breaking a mission down step-by-step with passionate oratory that speaks to the long term manifestation of an idea, you will not only free the employee of ambiguity, you will inspire the employee to create options to the mission you may not have considered. In the end, clear and concise communication is used as a motivational device.
Steve Jobs created Apple using many of these traits. If you see your role on the world’s stage as either transformational or merely trying to positively affect your department, using the strategies of charismatic leaders will allow you to have an edge within your industry. 

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Monday, December 5, 2011

How to Use Charisma to Become More Persuasive


Charismatic leaders have a preternatural way of influencing and getting people to do things for them. When taking to extremes, these talents can be viewed as manipulative. However, when accomplished with a sense of mutuality, all parties can benefit from the relationship. The following techniques are used by charismatic leaders to persuade others.
1. Charismatic leaders seek to fulfill hidden as well as expressed needs of others. Charismatic leaders are versed in human nature and know that individuals will generally respond to requests when these requests are tied to a core need within the individual. Charismatic leaders ask questions to determine these needs by tapping into the emotional as well as mental dynamics of individuals. Open-ended questions such as “That’s interesting, what is the greatest challenge you regularly experience in your company?,” help charismatic leaders determine a person’s motivation. By empathizing and sharing experiences that relate to the individual, charismatic leaders create initiatives that recruit people who have a vested interest in a mission.
2. Charismatic leaders speak with passion and specificity. Contrary to popular beliefs about charismatic leaders, they are not “pie in the sky” visionaries who spout impractical and lofty ideas. Charismatic leaders are adept at spotting opportunities and speak directly about the benefits as well as the challenges surrounding a mission. The passion by charismatic leaders stem from their willingness to “own” or personalize initiatives. The personalization of a mission takes on a crusade-like zeal that becomes infectious to potential supporters. Also, Charismatic leaders articulate the completion of tasks within a step-by-step plan that inspires followers to embrace the feasibility of a mission.
3. Charismatic leaders are relentless. Because of personalization and the feasibility of a challenging mission, charismatic leaders judge themselves by their performance. For charismatic leaders, achieving a goal is not merely meeting an objective, but a self-defining opportunity to prove their worth. The tireless efforts of charismatic leaders stem from their identity being wrapped into the mission. As a result, followers are inspired by the leader’s commitment.
To emulate the leadership qualities of charismatic leaders, determine what your core needs are, adopt a mission as your own, commit to it, and execute activities until the mission is complete. By demonstrating and implementing these traits, you will not only find your passion for projects, but people will follow you based on their self-interest.