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The Job Seeker’s Playbook

Whether you’re a football fan or not, chances are you’ve heard that the 2017 NFL season kicks off tonight with the defending Super Bowl Champion New England Patriots hosting the Kansas City Chiefs. Now, you may be asking yourself, “What does football have to do with my job search?” Well, surprisingly enough, there is a lot a job seeker can learn from this electrifying game.

Check out our “Job Seeker’s Playbook” below for a look at the lessons you can learn from the NFL.

There is no “I” in Team
You can’t overstate the value of teamwork in football. Football is a game where no single player can do much of anything without tons of help from the team. Remember that as a job seeker, you have a team to rely on too.

Before you submit your resume and cover letter, ask family, friends and your recruiter to read them over. They may help you find errors you would otherwise miss. Job seekers tend to feel they are on their own, but networking really is teamwork. Join groups online and attend networking events. You can meet people, earn referrals, learn more about your industry, and get some tips and advice on how to grow.

Recovery After a Sack
Many job seekers can relate to being “sacked”. It’s a reality in the job search just as it is in football, where setbacks and misfortune are a major theme. But have you ever seen a quarterback stomp off the field and quit after a sack? Quarterbacks know it’s part of the game. They recover quickly and begin planning their next strategy for moving forward.

As a job seeker, you will experience upsets and disappointment. That interviewer may not follow up with you. Your connection may not submit a referral for you. Your application may not even be seen by a hiring manager. You need to prepare for these setbacks. When you face a setback, step away. Then regroup after you let yourself process it, and get back to your job search. Reaffirm your belief in yourself by looking at your past experiences and skill set, then refocus your search on companies that matter to you.

Focus on the Bigger Picture
Success in football is all about trying several times to accomplish a goal. Sometimes a first down is achieved on the initial play, but often it’s not. The players never give up after the first failed play. They know it may take several tries and they stick with it. Stay focused on the long-term goal of finding a career opportunity that aligns with your values and your professional goals.
If you have an offer for a position that is outside the career path you want, then perhaps you should should hold off on settling and pursue a more meaningful job that fits into your professional goals.

Every player on every team goes through rough days, failed plays and big losses. But they stick with it and two lucky teams make it all the way to the Superbowl. Optimism, strategy, self-belief, great coaching and, of course, amazing fan support all help propel them to victory.

Now pass the buffalo chicken dip, and tell us how can we help you achieve your goals!

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#IamETStalent – Virginia Seiden – Industrial Division Lead

Meet Virginia! (Yes now that song is stuck in our head too!) Her steadfast determination, infectious smile, and uncanny ability to understand our clients business and connect talent with a job they’ll love are just a few things that make her a rock-star member of the ETS team. Check out this video to learn all about why you should get to know Virginia.

What made you want to be a recruiter at ETS?
As a recruiter I literally change peoples lives. Other than getting married, having children or buying a house, there are few things in life that have a bigger impact on an individual and their family than landing or missing out on a great opportunity. Even though I can’t hire everyone, I try to impact those who don’t land an opportunity this time by coaching them and helping them understand how they can better develop themselves. So they will have a better chance the next time.

How did your role evolve from Recruiter to Division Lead?
By never giving up. I believe that business is all about relationships whether that’s in the office or out strengthening connections within the community. I always try to go above and beyond all expectations. I thrive under pressure and I love a good challenge. So to me, there’s nothing more rewarding than not giving up when something’s hard.

What’s your favorite part about the Champlain Valley?
The constant change. I love living in an area where we get to enjoy all four seasons.

Any claims to fame? Maybe you won an air guitar contest or won a lifetime supply of Ben & Jerry’s in a raffle? Or what’s one thing people would never know about you?
I’m very competitive and I dominate in laser tag.

What’s a superpower you’ve always wanted and how would you use this power?
Multiplicity. Imagine there were 5 of you going in different directions and accomplishing 5 time as much as you normally could. I could be five time as productive, or see the same event from five angles. I would be able to do volunteer work with one while another one could be enjoying a tour with one of my clients.

What’s your favorite restaurant?
Latitude 44 Bistro

What was your first impression walking into ETS?
I weigh my first impression on anything very heavily. As you know, you never get a second chance at a first impression. So when I walked in to ETS I was blown away with how welcoming and professional the environment and staff was.

Name something that makes your job feel rewarding.
The feeling you get when you have the opportunity to impact someone’s life. Whether that’s giving advice to candidates, helping them connect with a new career, or providing our Client’s with the talent needed to thrive.

What’s one piece of advice you give to candidates about to interview?
Research the company. One of the biggest mistakes candidates make in an interview is not knowing enough about the company. Do some digging on the web. Look up the company on social media. And don’t forget your recruiter is a valuable resource.

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The Power of a Mentor-Mentee Relationship

Trying to do great things is difficult. Trying to do them alone is almost impossible. That’s why the most successful and influential people in their world have mentors, and also mentor others. Steve Jobs had Bill Campbell; Mark Zuckerberg had Steve Jobs; Bill Gates had Warren Buffett.

Mentors. They’ve been there, and done that. A mentor can help guide you through your professional journey, and is said to be one of the most important keys to success – Imperative at any point in your career. Yet, a woeful number of professionals navigate their careers without one.

Here are some of the biggest benefits you’ll get out of mentorship – no matter which role you play:

You’ll be Pushed to Think Outside of the Box
Mentors find ways to stimulate your personal and professional growth. Working with you in a way that pushes you out of your comfort zone, and encourages you to hone and learn new skills.

Before you start looking for a mentor, consider what kind of role you are looking for them to play in your relationship. 2 types of roles mentors typically embody are:

  • The Cheerleader – who relentlessly boosts your self-esteem and confidence until you feel brave enough to knock down your own boundaries.
  • The Coach – who provides the knowledge you need to innovate – or overcome the same adversity they did.

If you’re approached to mentor someone else, consider what role would most help them grow.

Learn How To Accept And Give Feedback
Having a mentor means you’re asking someone to give you criticism all the time. And since mentors can see where you need to improve, where you often cannot, this means you’ll need to learn how to accept that feedback – not taking it as a challenge or an insult. This understanding will continue to serve you throughout your career, where feedback is boundless.

For the mentor, this also means that if they aren’t yet skilled at giving criticism in a way that comes across as helpful rather than insulting, they’ll have plenty of time to practice to make the relationship work.

Gain A Confidant Who Gives Reassurance
With a relationship built on respect and understanding, mentors do more than give advice and help brainstorm, they become trusted advisers. They’ll listen, share your worries, and guide you through your fears with their years of experience – giving you reassurance.

When the mentor is under stress, they can use that situation as a learning exercise for the mentee. Both the mentor and the mentee benefit from the stress reducing power of the relationship, because at the heart of it, they’re friends who trust each other’s capability and good judgement.

Mentoring is all about forming a great relationship centered around a mutual passion. The most satisfied mentees are the ones who recognize that every meeting has the potential to help their mentors advance their own careers, too. The keys to establishing a successful relationship include achieving total honesty, using open and supportive communication, establishing short and long term goals, and collaboratively solving problems. It’s a lot of work, but if you do it right, your career will soar to new heights (and that goes for both of you).

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From Big Hair to Big Data

Celebrating 35 Years
In 1982 Hope Coryer did something no one else had done in the North Country. She opened a business that connected people with opportunity. Now, 35 years later, the company she founded thrives in no small part due to the lessons she taught the ETS family throughout the years.” Deb Cleary, President/CEO of ETS, Inc. stated, “As a 16 year veteran of the company my mom started, I’m proud of the business we’ve built. Myself and the 24 person team here in Plattsburgh and now Burlington, VT have become experts in workforce issues and challenges and work every day to solve our client’s problems and allow them to focus on their businesses.”

ETS Donates $25,000 to the IAM to Commemorate Long History of Workforce Development
ETS, Inc. is thrilled to announce that to commemorate and continue their long history of workforce development in the area, they have donated $25,000 to The Institute for Advanced Manufacturing (IAM) at Clinton Community College. With this donation, one of the new classrooms will be named the “ETS Electronics Technology Lab.”

“Not just a business, this is our home. From the beginning, my mom made it a priority to give back to the community. As we proudly continue to build upon those efforts, helping hundreds of clients and tens of thousands of candidates connect to each other over the last 3.5 decades, we are honored to now include the IAM on this list.” continued Cleary.

The momentous opening of the IAM is only amplified by the area’s rapidly expanding manufacturing industry. Cleary stated, “As ETS strives to stay on top of evolving trends, we’re ready to take on the future of staffing with an array of exciting new tools. ETS has recently invested in systems and technology to bring the most advanced tools to source top talent to fill the excellent opportunities that North Country employers offer. We will be rolling out technology solutions to help predict better matches between clients and candidates in the hopes of being able to make real progress in solving retention issues.”

What the Community is Saying
“Over the last 35 years, ETS has been more than a successful employment service. It has been a consistent leader in the development and implementation of important and innovative workforce development strategies. Congratulations to a North Country business success story which has also been a real part of the region’s success.”
Garry Douglas, President, North Country Chamber of Commerce

“Happy 35th! Congratulations on this momentous anniversary of serving the placement needs of our region’s workforce. ETS’ financial commitment to the Institute for Advanced Manufacturing at Clinton Community College will help educate and empower folks to be competitive for some of the best placements in the future. I applaud them for supporting the IAM and our local talent.”
– Michael Cashman, Town Supervisor, Town of Plattsburgh

“ETS is a fabulous company! They have a long-standing reputation for customer service and will often go above and beyond for their customers and clients. They also have an extraordinary history of supporting the overall community through their acts of generosity, compassion and empathy. They set a great example of how a business can give back to the community and contribute to our unique quality of life.”
– John C.Bernardi, CEO, United Way of the Adirondack Region, Inc.

“The quality of the service provided by ETS over the last 35 years has been consistent and impressive. The contributions to the community by ETS through its owners and employees has been extraordinary demonstrating commitment to the Plattsburgh and Clinton County.”
– Former U.S. Congressman Bill Owens

ETS would like to extend a huge thank you to our valued clients and employees. The future is bright, especially in the North Country and Champlain Valley. ETS looks forward to growing and innovating here and beyond.

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How to Uncover Company Culture

Want to know what it’s like to work for a company before you accept an offer? You can’t exactly just ask the standard, “What’s your culture like?” and expect to get a candid answer. Besides the fact that company culture covers a whole lot of ground and summing it up in one answer isn’t totally possible, it’s more likely than not going to yield a polished, marketing-approved response.

One of our favorite definitions of culture comes from the book Corporate Cultures: The Rites and Rituals of Corporate Life, in which they define it as “the way we do things around here.” Culture ranges from how people dress and talk to leadership and reward structures.

So how do you uncover the corporate culture of a potential employer? The truth is that you will never really know the corporate culture until you have worked at the company for a number of months, but you can get close to it by asking specific questions during an interview. We’ve compiled our favorite questions that, while seemingly fairly straightforward on the surface, can help uncover deeper intel about the inner workings on the company. Keep these in mind the next time you’re in an interview and want to know the scoop.

How long have you been with the company?
If everyone you talk to has only been there a short time this may be a red flag. High turnover could be a sign of low pay, long hours, lack of opportunity for career advancement, or incompetent management.

How does the organization support your professional development and career growth?
If a company sees continued education as adding value to your profile this is a good indicator that they care about employee retention.

When the company is met with a challenge, is risk-taking encouraged? And what happens when people fail?
This question does a great job at revealing whether or not the company blames processes (if so, they are an organization of continuous learning) or people (if so, they may have a blame culture) when something goes wrong.

What was the last big achievement that was celebrated?
The questions gives interviewers the chance to reveal if employee efforts are acknowledged and appreciated and if people enjoy having company parties/gatherings. If they don’t do anything to celebrate it may be a thankless and cold environment.

How do you measure success and over what time frame? How are these metrics determined?
This question can give you insight into whether your potential new boss has realistic expectations with respect to what you will accomplish and by when.

What activities do you offer for employees?
If companies have outings, retreats or other social events, it can often give you a clue to how important they think it is for coworkers to LIKE on another, not just work together. As well as give you insight into whether or not your potential coworkers might be more extroverted or introverted.

Does the company give back to the community? In what ways?
If it is important that you and the company are aligned in terms of shared priorities such as corporate responsibility or giving back, then understanding their level of involvement offers important insight.

In the era of perks and employee benefits, we often get blind-sighted by the free food and on location gym facilities that employers offer and we forget to consider whether the company culture will fit us. But you can’t thrive where you don’t feel at home. And you can’t grow where you don’t feel welcome. The bottom line is that finding a company with a culture that fits you is essential to being happy, successful, productive and truly enjoying your work.

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#IamETStalent – Sheera Van-Straten – VT Professional Recruiter

Meet Sheera! Her bubbly personality, diverse background, and recruiting expertise, are just a few things that make her a rock-star member of the ETS team. Check out this video to learn all about why you should get to know Sheera.

What made you want to be a recruiter at ETS?
Coming from the recruiting world, I always had passion helping people find their next career move. When I learned about the commitment ETS has towards supporting the local market and the local economy, I felt relatable to their message and wanted to be part of it.

What’s your favorite part of the Champlain Valley?
The ability to connect with nature. Coming from a big city, Vermont was a perfect place to discover nature and help in promoting a healthier lifestyle for myself and my family.

What’s one thing people would never know about you?
I was in the Israel Defense Forces before moving to the U.S.

What’s a superpower you’ve always wanted and how would you use this power?
My favorite superhero is Superman, so pretty much whatever super power he has, I always wanted. I would probably use it to help people, just like him.

What’s the strangest question you’ve heard in an interview?
If you could chose the name of the company you are interviewing for, what would you name it?

What’s your favorite restaurant?
That’s a tough question. Vermont offers such a variety of tastes and foods it’s hard to pick one. I do know that my favorite food is a maple creemee. I even named my dog Maple after it.

What was your first impression walking into ETS?
I had an awesome welcome walking through the door. I could feel the positive energy from people and it felt great.

Name something that makes your job feel rewarding.
The most rewarding part of my job, is knowing that I truly help people better their lives, and promote their professional growth.

What’s one piece of advice you give to candidates about to interview?
Remember to smile. Many times, when candidates head into an interview, they get nervous and are just focused on making a good impression and saying the right thing, that they forget to smile. A smile can really make a difference, it’s an ice breaker.

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Your Guide To Generation Z

Soon Gen Z will be hitting the workforce with a strong 72.8 million individuals. Gen Z includes anyone born from the mid – 1990s to the early 2000s. Which means their walking off the graduation stage and into the workforce, and it’s time to start preparing for this new wave of workers.

In order to prepare, it is imperative to understand the difference between them and the millennials that came right before. Stop rolling your eyes – yes we see you. We get that learning to understand the wants and needs of yet another generation seems daunting, but that’s why we put together these 4 straight to the point facts you should know.

More than Tech Savvy, Tech Native
Gen Zers are digital natives. They are the most web-savvy, app-friendly generation yet. Not only were they born in the era of smartphones, but they are used to running multiple devices at once. This has helped them to become extremely comfortable multitasking, but has contributed greatly to their short attention span – which on average is 8 seconds.
Takeaway: Gen Zers are more visual and a video or animation will resonate more with them then a long description. To attract Gen Z candidates, companies should look to digitize recruiting and disrupt recruiting norms by using technology to reach new talent pools at low cost.

The Most Entrepreneurial Generation Ever
Gen Zers are very entrepreneurial, they want to be heard, own their projects, and get recognition for their work. The newly developing high tech and highly networked world has resulted in an entire generation thinking and acting more entrepreneurially.
Takeaway: As a result of their entrepreneurial way of thinking, Gen Zers desire more independent work environments, and want to make sure that the years invested in their jobs will propel them forward on their journey of self development. Companies should create opportunities for younger workers to be visible to leadership and exhibit the entrepreneurial culture Gen Z is seeking.

A Resourceful and Competitive Nature
With the advantage of easier access to more information, people and resources than any prior generation, Gen Zers are incredibly self-reliant, resourceful and pragmatic. There’s a lot of rich information and content on the web and they know how to find it quickly, so they don’t feel they need to take a back seat to somebody just because that other person has more experience.
Takeaway: They value independence over collaboration. Companies will find greater success touting private offices and competitive salaries than teamwork and constant collaboration.

Value Human Interaction
Despite growing up in a fully digital age, Gen Zers are ready to put down their devices and engage in face-to-face interactions with co-workers and clients. They actually crave open conversations and value these interactions even more than other generations.
Takeaway: Contrary to popular belief Gen Zers don’t always want to be on their devices. Companies should play to this preferred method of communication with regular check ins.

Gen Z’s have grown up in incredibly complex and uncertain times, and they have adapted well by taking initiative, thriving in agile environments, and questioning status quo to identify if there is, in fact, a better way. By the end of this decade Gen Z will be emerging into the workforce so now is the time to prepare and anticipate their needs as employees.

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ETS Welcomes ADK P-Tech Intern

Meet Julian! The newest member of the ETS team – our Marketing Intern! Julian comes to us from ADK P-Tech, and will be assisting our Marketing Department in creating fun and engaging content across a variety of platforms. Take it away Julian!

About me
Hi everyone! I am Julian Nephew, a native of Peru and a student of the ADK P-Tech program for 3 years now. I’ll admit that at first I was not very enthusiastic about joining the P-Tech program, which would be in its very first year when I started. But with the encouragement (some might call it a very persuasive nudge) from my parents, I started my first year and knew that I had made the right choice – quickly seeing that it would greatly benefit my future. While participating in the program, and learning about different career paths, I realized that I might have an interest in pursuing marketing. Flashforward to now, with the help of my ADK P-Tech instructors, I am diving into the field and getting a first-hand look at the industry. When I am not furthering my education and interests at ADK P-Tech, I like to train in mixed martial arts and go hiking.

About ADK P-Tech
P-TECH is an innovative program that is taking shape across the state. ADK P-TECH was founded in 2013 as one of 16 P-TECH schools funded in Round One of a New York State and Federally funded Early College High School initiative. The unique culture of a P-TECH 9-14 school is built upon high expectations for students and adults alike. There are currently 26 P-TECH schools operating in New York State with an additional 7 schools scheduled to open for students in the Fall of 2017. In P-Tech students leave with a high school diploma and also a industry recognized associate’s degree. The schools create a seamless program for students to acquire the academic, technical, and workplace skills and knowledge that employers need. ADK P-TECH students attend classes on the Peru High School Campus during Years 1-3 in “a school within a school model.” Students then transition to the Clinton Community College Campus during Year 4 and complete degree requirements in Years 5-6. Teachers, partners, and parents work together to ensure that every student graduates fully prepared for the 21st century workplace.

Throughout my time in ADK P-Tech I have had many great experiences, but my favorite has to be going to Clinton Community College this past spring to take my first college course ever – English 101. As I move onto my last year in ADK P-Tech, I look forward to getting the full college experience and moving one step closer to getting into the workforce.

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AIME Kick-Off

Looking for a clear pathway to a career in manufacturing? Head to the AIME Kick-Off event on Tuesday, August 22nd from 4:00pm-5:30pm at the Institute for Advanced Manufacturing at Clinton Community College. Discover how this 8 week, hands-on training course can prepare you to jump start a career in advanced manufacturing! Check out the full details of the next AIME course below!

For more information on AIME or the Kick-Off event call the ETS Plattsburgh office at 518.562.4673.

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#IamETStalent – Clare Urban – VT Recruitment Business Partner

Meet Clare! Her spirited personality, love for Lake Champlain, and effortless ability to create relationships, are just a few things that make her a rock-star member of the ETS team. Check out this video to learn all about why you should get to know Clare.

What made you want to be a recruiter at ETS?
I think i’m pretty good at reading people, I thought I should be a psychologist or recruiter – I chose recruiter!

What’s your favorite part of the Champlain Valley?
I love to be by the water. When I grow up I really want a tiny house by the lake.

Any claims to fame? Maybe you won an air guitar contest or won a lifetime supply of Ben & Jerry’s in a raffle?
I originally came to America from Nottingham on an adventure as a nanny for the Shearer family.

What’s a superpower you’ve always wanted and how would you use this power?
A Mind Reader – so I would have advanced warning on who will or will not show up to the job site.

What’s the strangest question you’ve heard in an interview?
So, are you Australian?

What was your first impression walking into ETS?
Wow! That’s a lot of orange! But it set the tone for the colorful people I would shortly meet.

Name something that makes your job feel rewarding.
Making friends. I enjoy making new friends and in this job I get the opportunity to meet SO many people.

What’s one piece of advice you give to candidates about to interview?
Relax, we are here to help.

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