QUARANTINE TIME MAXIMIZED: SHOW YOUR RESUME SOME LOVE

If you’re in California, you likely have a few more weeks of Safer at Home living. Regardless of how much quarantine time you have left, we want our tribe to also be Sane at Home, so that you can emerge from phase 1 of this pandemic with confidence and optimism.

We get it. The current situation has left us all a little Corona cranky and frazzled at times.  Until we can roam free, we’ll be offering up suggestions for using a fraction of your valuable quarantine time to your best advantage. A little bit of investment here can go a long way in decreasing your stress level and increasing your feeling of being in control.

First up … your resume.

Whether you plan on pursuing another professional opportunity or not, having a current and powerful resume is always smart.  So often, resumes “sit” like that easily neglected, dry, withering houseplant in the corner that doesn’t get much attention until it’s almost dead. And then, when someone realizes it’s starving, just a little bit of water and TLC miraculously brings it back to life. Same with resumes. They just need a little feeding now and then to stay alive.

Has it been a while since you “fed” the document that is most critical to your professional life? No problem. Whether it just needs a simple watering or a complete replanting, now is a perfect time to reflect on all your amazing accomplishments and get them integrated into your resume.

Why don’t most of us invest in maintaining this precious asset? “Because it takes so much time!” and “It’s so hard” are two common responses. But much like being ordered to stay home … it’s really not that difficult and doesn’t demand much time in the grand scheme of things. Plus, the return on investment is incredible! And, if you haven’t updated in a while, you’ll be amazed at just how much you have accomplished.

In a nutshell, don’t social distance yourself from your resume. Instead of six feet, make it a practice to revisit it every six months. Investing a just few minutes twice a year will ensure that it is fresh, vibrant and alive any time you need it.

Need some guidance? Based on our experience reviewing thousands of resumes, here is some insight into what makes for a powerful resume as you rise into the senior and executive ranks of local government.

FAQs

 How far back should I go?

  • While some resume experts advise to only include the last 10 years of employment, we believe resumes tell a story and our clients are interested in your entire Take up more real estate with your more recent and meatier jobs and less with older or less relevant positions.

We’re guessing you’ve had a pretty interesting life and we’re interested in learning about your story when it comes to being considered for high-level positions.

How long should it be?

  • Generally speaking, allowing a page per decade of experience is a good guideline.
  • Got gaps in your history? Be truthful and include any work you did (interim, freelance, temp, volunteer) during that time.

What information about my work history should I include?

  • For each position, list job title, name of the organization or company, and dates you held that position.
  • Under each position, describe your scope of authority/responsibility including # of staff and budget info. Equally as important, bullet your major accomplishments and contributions for your most recent jobs.
  • Include association memberships and leadership positions, and other professional and personal passions if they are professionally relevant.
  • The URL to your LinkedIn profile is helpful because the hiring entity will look. Always. So, make sure your profile is current and matches your resume.

What about tone and customization?

  • When tidying up your resume for a specific position, take a few minutes to align the language with the job you are applying for. You may even have more than one resume, depending on the target position or profession and the skills you want to highlight.
  • Use an active voice and active verbs (managed, built, created, developed, introduced, launched, etc.). Stumped for an appropriate verb? Google “active resume verbs” for hundreds of ideas.
  • Use objective adjectives and use them sparingly. For example, it could be your opinion that your program was “extremely successful,” but it is objective to say that your program was the “first of its kind at XYZ Agency.”
  • Identify the key job qualifications and skills and be certain to use those same terms. If you use “oversaw” and the targeted position uses “managed,” the initial screening may not identify you as a match.

What is the best presentation?

  • Simple, clear, crisp and error free.
  • Always proofread. Ask at least two other people to proofread, as well. Never rely on spell check, auto correct or your recruiter to catch typos.
  • Use headings, bullets and indentations for readability.
  • Recommended fonts: A Sans serif type, such as Arial or Helvetica, and 11 or 12 point type for body copy. For headings, go one size larger and use bold.
  • Use boxes or lines to call attention to your special skills and experience. Don’t use color to highlight, in case your resume is copied in black and white.
  • Submit your resume as a .pdf file, so it is appropriate for both electronic submission and hard copy.

As a professional in your industry your network might run deep and wide. However, an effective resume is still critical to your success.

REDWOOD CITY WELCOMES MICHELLE POCHÉ FLAHERTY AS ASSISTANT CITY MANAGER

Michelle Poché Flaherty will join Redwood City to serve as Assistant City Manager/Administrative Services Director beginning May 26, City Manager Melissa Stevenson Diaz announced on April 29.

Teri Black & Co. is proud to have managed the nationwide recruitment that brought Flaherty to Redwood City, where she will oversee the Finance, Human Resources, Information Technology and Revenue Services functions.

The media release from the City directly referenced evolving community needs and City resources in light of the COVID-19 pandemic, noting that Flaherty’s strategic decision-making and process improvement skills will be heavily utilized in “reimagining City services while remaining grounded in sound financial practices.” Undoubtedly, local government managers of all types are being called upon to undergo these same processes and will be for the foreseeable future.

Flaherty is currently Deputy City Manager for the City of Palo Alto, and has held various senior executive level positions at the city, county and federal levels of government during her 20+ year career. She is also a certified executive coach and author of ICMA’s textbook Effective Supervisory Practices; she presents an annual webinar series on the book.

In the media release, Flaherty said, “It’s an honor and a privilege to be able to serve Redwood City, a community rich in culture, collaboration and civility. I am passionate about process improvement, customer service and empowering leadership in public service and am excited to grow my career in Redwood City.”

Follow us on LinkedIn to see our current and upcoming recruitments and to follow our blog. Follow Michelle Poché Flaherty on LinkedIn.

Continue reading REDWOOD CITY WELCOMES MICHELLE POCHÉ FLAHERTY AS ASSISTANT CITY MANAGER

Ace That Video Interview!

By Senior Recruiter Tina White

As organizations adjust their norms for the health and safety of their employees and communities in light of coronavirus, they are revisiting how they conduct candidate interviews. In some cases, they will conduct virtual (online) interviews, using services such as Zoom or Skype.  We don’t know if this will result in permanent change, but we want to make sure that you are prepared for the shift (even if it’s temporary) to phone and/or video interviews

Rest assured, we want to keep hiring world-class talent and we understand that adaptation is key.

TBC encourages you to prepare for a “virtual” interview in much the same way you would prepare for an in-person interview, with a few extra steps.

Set up and test your technology.

Whether your interview will be conducted using Skype, Zoom or some other video conferencing service, it is important to test your technology to ensure that you’re set up for success.

First, be certain to use the correct technology.

A desktop computer with a camera built into the monitor is best. A laptop with a camera is second best. Please do not try to use your cell phone to interview for a career-changing position.

Be sure to check your internet connectivity and confirm that your camera and microphone are working.  Make sure your signal strength is strong.  If it is not strong enough to be reliable, you may want to consider moving to another part of your house for a stronger signal. If you have the option to be connected via a wired ethernet connection (versus Wi-Fi), that would be preferable.

If you haven’t used videoconferencing tools before, don’t worry. They are very reliable. Before your interview, ask a friend to participate in a test run with you from their home computer. Even if you’ve done a video interview or webinar at work, remember that it’s going to be different at home. Make sure you can be heard clearly over your microphone. Familiarize yourself with the service, including how to mute/unmute the microphone and how to change the screen settings so that you are able to see the entire panel of interviewers in a line or grid of squares. It pays to take the time to be comfortable with the technology. You will be better prepared to respond to the interviewers, and the panel will see a candidate who is nimble and flexible.

Set up your space and minimize distractions.

Where should you be for the interview?

The space should be clean, quiet and well-lit. Ideally, find a room with great lighting, perhaps near a window. Having a blank or quiet wall as your backdrop can guarantee that you are the focal point of the conversation. When you do your test run, be sure to look at the background behind you. Is there a pile of laundry in the corner? A messy stack of papers or books that is visible? A very busy wallpaper or painting? Be certain your space is clear of such things.

Prior to the interview time, turn off the TV. Silence your cell phone. Close windows (and doors if you can). Keep pets in another room. If you frequently have packages delivered, you might consider leaving a note on your front door asking people not to ring the doorbell. Some pups really like barking when the doorbell goes off!

Some of this may be harder to orchestrate when your spouse or partner is working from home and school has been canceled for your children. Properly preparing them may be as important as preparing yourself.

Dress for the part.

Dress just as you would for an in-person interview and bring your A-game. Your appearance matters! You will feel more confident and perform better during the interview if you are dressed professionally.

What you wear may show up differently on video, so you might want to avoid patterns, bright colors or big jewelry. If you wear a solid color blazer that creates contrast with your background, it can help the interviewer’s eyes gravitate to you and stay focused on you during the interview.  Also, be sure that your bottom half matches your upper half, in case you must get up during the interview. In other words, yes, please do wear bottoms – but not pajama bottoms!

Have your reference materials ready.

Print out a copy of your resume. Have it in front of you, along with any notes that you’ve prepared. You don’t want to read your answers, so bullet point prompts or talking points are best.

Create connection.

Practice and watch your body language. You can’t shake your interviewer’s hand, but you can sit up straight, smile and keep the camera at eye level.  Be certain to greet everyone in the room that you can see.

If you keep your focus on the *camera* when you are talking (not on the image of the person interviewing you), then you will be making eye contact and this will help create connection.

At the conclusion of the interview, behave just as you would if you were in the room.

Again, thank and acknowledge everyone. Do not be the first to hang up unless you are instructed to do so (just as you wouldn’t be the first to stand if you were all in the room together).

Follow up.

Follow up on a virtual interview the same way you would an in-person interview. A handwritten and mailed thank you note to each panelist is always a welcome gesture. An email is also acceptable.

Now, wait for the phone call from TBC or your target agency, letting you know that you’re a finalist for that coveted position! As always, the team at TBC will continue to provide stellar support throughout the recruitment process by keeping you informed.  You got this!

CITY OF BURBANK HIRES PUBLIC WORKS DIRECTOR KEN BERKMAN

 

Congratulations to Ken Berkman, who recently assumed the mantle of Director of Public Works for the City of Burbank, CA.

Burkman was selected after a nationwide search managed by Teri Black & Co. City Manager Justin Hess said, “Among many desired qualities, I was especially focused on finding a leader who would be a visible and engaged role model. Ken has a great mix of public and private sector experience, lasting more than 30 years.”

Most recently, Berkman had been with El Segundo. Before that, his experience including stints with the City of Agoura Hills and Culver City, as well as private sector companies MARRS Services, Inc.; Psomas; Parsons Corp.; and Turner Corp.

Congratulations, Ken! We here at TBC wish you the best in your tenure!

San Mateo Welcomes Chief of Police Ed Barberini

Ed Barberini, a 25-year Law Enforcement veteran, was sworn in as San Mateo’s new Chief of Police in February.

In a nice nod to tradition and family, Chief Barberini’s father, also named Ed, administered the oath of office to his son.

Barberini has more than 25 years of law enforcement experience, including Chief positions in San Bruno and Millbrae. The bulk of his career has been spent with the San Mateo County Sheriff’s office, gaining experience in administration, transportation, corrections, field operations, court security and bomb squad work. He also gained important experience directing the County Office of Emergency Services and Homeland Security.

As Chief, Barberini will manage 170 staff, including 115 sworn officers, and a $47 million annual budget.

“I am extremely excited to join this team and help carry on the excellent work being done, not only within the police department, but throughout the City,” Barberini said in a City news release.

We here at Teri Black & Company are proud to have managed the nationwide recruitment, and wish Chief Barberini the very best in his tenure!

Milpitas Selects Armando Corpuz to Lead Police Department

The City of Milpitas has named Armando Corpuz as its seventh Chief of Police, succeeding Acting City Manager/Police Chief Steve Pangelinan. A veteran of the Milpitas Police Department (MPD), Chief Corpuz will take the helm on January 7, 2018.

Born and raised in Milpitas, Chief Corpuz has extensive experience and a broad knowledge of law enforcement operations, having served in a wide variety of positions during his 26 years in policing. His diverse experience includes service in all sections of the Department – Patrol, Traffic, SWAT, Investigations, Anti-Terrorism, High Tech Crimes, Records, and Dispatch.

Chief Corpuz focuses strongly on community and connection and has 11 years of management experience in the Milpitas Police Department (MPD), having risen through the ranks to Captain before his most recent promotion.

Chief Corpuz holds a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Business Management from Saint Mary’s College and is currently pursuing a Master of Science in Criminal Justice from the University of Oklahoma. He is also a graduate of the FBI National Academy, where he received an Excellence in Leadership Award and was elected by his classmates as a section leader.

Fremont Appoints Curtis P. Jacobson New Fire Chief

The City of Fremont has appointed Curtis P. Jacobson as its new Fire Chief following a nationwide search. Chief Jacobson joins Fremont with 25 years of fire protection service in his hometown of San Jose, including 18 years of experience in increasingly senior managerial and executive leadership. He has served as San Jose Fire Chief since 2015, with prior experience as Deputy Chief, Division Chief, and Battalion Chief in a variety of bureaus.

In his new position, Chief Jacobson will be responsible for 13 in-service fire companies, nearly 160 sworn and non-sworn department members, and an annual budget of $46.5 million. The department responds to approximately 17,500 calls each year.

Chief Jacobson has been recognized for effectively managing, supervising, evaluating, mentoring, and coaching personnel under his command and has extensive experience in emergency response, fire prevention, training, education, strategic support, and administration in public safety service. He also has a wide variety of experience in the fields of emergency management, hazardous materials management, public education, employee development, recruitment and selection, and dispute resolution.

Chief Jacobson holds a number of professional credentials and degrees, including completion of Harvard’s Senior Executives in State and Local Government. He holds a Bachelor of Science in Public Administration from San Jose State University, where he is also nearing completion on his MPA. An active community member, Chief Johnson serves as a Board Member of the San Jose Jazz Festival and is a member of the Santa Clara County Fire Chiefs Association and the Santa Clara County Black Firefighters Association. Congrats Chief!!