10 Best U.S. Housing Markets: Only Two in California

forbes-nyc

Courtesy Forbes.com New York City

Chicago Sun-Times published this deansguide article 2-27-09

FoxBusiness.com published this deansguide article 2-27-09

According to a new Forbes.com report “10 Best and Worst US Housing Markets” California only has two markets rated in the top 10 Best: San Diego #5 and Los Angeles at #9. The most surprising fact was San Francisco’s ranking as the #5 Worst housing market in the nation.

The 10 Best Housing Markets in the US

  1. New York, NY
  2. Washington, D.C.
  3. Charlotte, NC
  4. Portland, OR
  5. San Diego, CA
  6. Denver, CO
  7. Boston, MA
  8. Dallas, TX
  9. Los Angeles, CA
  10. Seattle, WA

Most Powerful Element of Sales: Asking Questions

The following video is a short yet extremely powerful reminder for some people and for others a revelation. The most powerful element in sales is to ask questions. The simple act of asking questions begins a dialoge that engages your target audience. It is this engagement that allows you to deliver your value or the value of your product or service.

Do You Have a List of 25 Questions?

According to sales guru Jeffrey Gitomer one of the most powerful methods of asking questions is to make a list of 25 questions:

  • Questions you are “certain that your prospect (audience) has not heard before
  • Questions you are “certain your competition is not asking”
  • The more thought provoking the questions the more your prospective buyer will respect you
  • The more your prospective buyer respects you, the more likely they will be truthful with you
  • Questions can lead to the factors that determine the sale
  • Questions can lead to your prospect describing how the decision is made

Job Seeker’s Guide to Making the Hiring Manager Happy

Careerbuilder.com ran a survey of 31,000 employers about their use of social media in screening and finding job applicants. The results include:

  • More than 1 in 5 employers use social media sites to screen job applicants
  • 22% of the 31,000 employers said they use social media to find human capital
  • 9% more said they would begin utilizing social media sites in 2009
  • 31% or nearly 10,000 employers will focus on social media as a recruiting and screening tool in 2009

The writing, pardon the pun, is on the wall. If you want to make a hiring manager happy, and help yourself, you will adopt all of the steps outlined below to help you–stand apart from the competition.

Silicon Valley star Guy Kawasaki did not intend for his chapter “The Art of Driving Your Competition Crazy” in Reality Check to be job seeker’s advice; yet the main theme is vital for any job seeker’s success. The chapter outlines 8 steps to drive your competition crazy aimed at helping entrepreneurs and corporations understand how to win at the art of business.The most valuable theme and step is “Focus on the customer.” Guy outlines the irony that entrepreneurs and businesses should not take action against the competition–don’t do anything to them but everything for the customer.

Theme: Make the Hiring Manager Happy

The idea and theme here is to ignore your competition and focus completely on a hiring manager’s happiness. Ignore the millions who are out of work and competing for the same jobs, ignore the pundits who continue to fuel the panic, ignore the negative naysayers who continue to bring your spirit down.

Instead think about what makes hiring managers happy? How about taking the task of reading resumes off their plate. What about saving them time, energy, and focus by removing the screening process that entails resumes and cover letters. Why not remove the gray areas and guess work for a hiring manager by delivering a better more revealing resource than a resume which is simply a job seeker’s listing of their value? How about removing the issue of back checking aka background checks to validate claims on a resume? Why not attempt to reduce their time wasted recruiting and looking for the right candidate for the job when you are available?

Most Hiring Managers Dislike:

  • Deluge of resumes create huge time crunch
  • Lost productivity in their own jobs due to resume review process
  • Tasking other people from their jobs to help in the review of resumes
  • Guess work involved in hoping they choose the right candidate
  • Decisions about new hires ultimately reflect upon the hiring manager’s own judgment
  • Lack of information or verifiable proof that job seeker can deliver their listed values in their resume

Make a Hiring Manager Happy:

  • Craft your value message of expertise, accomplishments, and experience
  • Establish your “employment campaign” blog that delivers your value message
  • Research how you can provide value to targeted hiring managers then deliver your value message
  • Write a keyword rich, descriptive, and opportunity message Linkedin profile
  • Utilize Twitter to broadcast and deliver your value message
  • Research your target companies for their participation in Web 2.0 blogging, social media networking, and engage them through these channel

American Film Institute’s 100 Most Inspirational Movies: Holiday Films For The Family

FoxBusiness.com published this deansguide article on 11-27-08

Reuters.com published this deansguide article on 11-27-08

The AFI aka American Film Institute is a rich and storied institution that provides a fantastic look at the American film industry. One of the best things about their site is the many top 10 and top 100 lists available for the true film fans.

Holiday movie fans will be especially happy with “AFI’s 100 Years 100 Cheers” a list of the Top 100 list of what AFI dubs “America’s Most Inspiring Movies.”

Cheers Top 10

1. It’s A Wonderful Life: Is anyone better than Jimmy Stewart for gratitude?

2. To Kill A Mockingbird: A curious choice due to it’s serious subject matter but brilliant none the less.

3. Shindler’s List: A true epic in every sense of the word

4. Rocky: Awesome period piece with a message that never gets old: believe and overcome.

5. Mr. Smith Goes To Washington: I am sorry but this one is out of place for me

6. E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial: Family fun and a reminder we can love no matter the form.

7. The Grapes of Wrath: Sorrow & suffering but Henry Fonda’s performance should be mandatory viewing

8. Breaking Away: Rocky for bicycling enthusiasts

9. Miracle on 34th Street: Fantastic Santa story for the little ones and the big ones too!

10. Saving Private Ryan: It made me cry and it made me care all within the tapestry of WW II

The One(s) That Got Away

1. Hoosiers: There is NO excuse for this movie to not be in the top 10. It is the ultimate learning experience

2. The Shawshank Redemption: In my all time top 3 movies and most likely the greatest acting effort by Morgan Freeman.

3. Field of Dreams: This one’s for my dad who I love very much and the American dream fathers and sons share from generation to generation.

Organize Your Job Search To Remain Motivated

FoxBusiness.com published this deansguide article 10-29-08

The most difficult job during our careers is not the first job out of college, the relocation across the country, or the start up position that pays stock options and nothing else. The job of creating and maintaining an employment campaign in order to find a new position is by far the toughest job people face during their careers. Why? Let’s count the reasons:

  1. Procrastination: People tend to take a “I’ll get to that soon” that leads them to get to things later.
  2. Organization: Many folks do not organize their day, structured like a business work day, in order to perform their job search like a job.
  3. Fear: When the procrastination habit takes hold, a person’s “plans” to organize fall apart. The guilt associated with a lack of progress manifests itself into fear as their funds dwindle and their actions remain at a stand still.

How do you overcome these challenges in your everyday “job” to find a job? Here are some tips to help you get the results you desire:

  1. Organization: Schedule your day just like you would in a paid job. Rise in the morning as if you are commuting to work, consider your time spent on “the job” an investment in your future, and organize the tasks you must complete in your job campaign.
  2. Time Management: create a schedule and place time limits for each project. Multi task, be productive, and measure your results aka ROTI (return on time investment).
  3. Lists: Help yourself get organized by making lists. The most prominent list should be your Top 10 companies to work for and your Top Industries to work within.
  4. Network: Research and identify real world networking events. Attend the events that give you the best chance to meet hiring managers, employed professionals, or industry specific mixers.
  5. Network Online: Create and maintain a blog. Write about your knowledge, experience, and expertise. Register with blog directories, comment on other blogs, and spend time monitoring your traffic levels
  6. Social Media Systems: Register and create profiles and a presence on business niche sites like Linkedin and Plaxo, Social sites like Facebook, Bookmark sites like delicious and Stumbleupon, and aggregator sites like Friendfeed. Create a twitter account for your free broadcasting system
  7. Employment Campaign: This is a concerted effort to manage the first 6 tips in this list in an ongoing, everyday plan to give your best in finding a new job.

There are no short cuts, no magic pills, and no excuses. Either you are performing this type of everyday plan or you are not. Do yourself a favor and ask yourself: “Am I working as hard as I can to find a job?” If this question is too difficult to ask or it raises doubts in your level of motivation, take stock in the fact you just took the first step in the right direction!

5 Steps To Discovering Your Value Give Away For Networking Success

Hard sales tactics adopted and utilized by most people in their strategies to network online and in the real world fall decidedly flat in an effort to create business relationships that lead to referral business. The 30 second elevator pitch, the blatant sales pitch, the product and services feature-benefit dump, a lack of listening skills, and the “work the room” mentality are giving way to a new much more effective strategy: giving value. Below is an example of the “work the room” business card treasure hunt modeled after a bad speed dating session seen on “Sex and the City.”

Before you can give away something that others value, give it often, give it continuously, and give it without asking for anything in return, you must first understand how to identify what you have to offer. The following should help you get started in identifying your value to others:

5 Tips To Finding Your Value “Give”

1. Make a List of Your Accomplishments: don’t be shy in this exercise. Give a full list with details

2. Make a List of Your Contacts of Influence: prioritize this list by who you know best and who KNOWs you

3. List Your Skill Sets: again do not be shy. Provide everything that is important to building your career

4. From the First Three Lists: analyze and choose what you believe to be the most valuable things you can give to your potential networking partners

5. Create a Plan on How To Deliver: will you utilize a blog or begin a public speaking platform to help benefit your potential networking partners? Identify all of the channels in which you can deliver your value

10 Skills You Need To Succeed At Almost Anything: Content From A Continent Away

Dustin Wax of Lifehack

An Italian blogger in Torino, Italy, who subscribes to deansguide because he thinks we may be related (joke), sent me a link to his bookmark (digg) 10 Skills of Life You Need To Succeed at Almost Anything.” The original blogger? The mighty and powerful lifehack’s Dustin Wax.

This is the reason why I love to blog. It is the most important business and social networking task I perform daily?. Here is a perfect example of 6 degrees of separation.

A big thank you goes to my “friend” from Italy who found me on my blog directory Mybloglog. The other big thank you goes to Dustin for compiling a great list; I am proud to say that #1, #2, #4, #5, #8 have been constant themes I write about here on AR: Public Speaking, Writing, Networking, Critical Thinking, and Research

Here are Dustin’s list and my list. What would your 10 Skills list include?

10 Skills You Need To Succeed at Almost Anything according to Dustin Wax

1. Public Speaking

2. Writing

3. Self Management

4. Networking

5. Critical Thinking

6. Decision Making

7. Math

8. Research

9. Relaxation

10. Basic Accounting

10 Skills You Need To Succeed at Almost Anything according to Dean

1. Writing: Competent writing skills are the #1 sought after skill over looked in today’s educational system

2. Public Speaking: This is the differentiating factor that can push you over the top

3. Timing: There are opportune and inopportune times; it’s the people that know when who have an advantage

4. Networking: It’s not who you know but who knows you according to Jeffrey Gitomer

5. Listening: This is an ignored skill that gives you the most information. Our society is all about being heard but if you watch the Godfather–he rarely speaks but he always listens!

6. Research: Do it well and it becomes a tool to educate you

7. Brainstorming: Ideas are commodities. If you don’t stretch your imagination you lose your sense of attaining the impossible

8. Giving: Give first, give often, and give value

9. Time Management: You can’t buy it and you can’t get it back so use it wisely!

10. Athletics: I have made friends, stayed in shape, and been recognized for the sports I enjoy participating in and watching