Crisis Communication: Communicate early and often

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• Contact the media before they
contact you.
• Communicate internally first, then
• Put the public first.
• Take responsibility.
• Be honest.
• Never say “No comment.”
• Designate a single spokesperson.
• Set up a central information center
(staging area).
• Provide a constant flow of information.
• Be familiar with media needs and
• Monitor news coverage and telephone
• Communicate with key publics.
• Be accessible.

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Mastering the Phone Interview — Take it Seriously…

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…and dress the part — especially if you are facetiming or skyping. The Sunday, March 24 “Courier-Post” in partnership with “” urges the interviewee to “be prepared and focused to make the best impression.” Check out previous blogs about going video. As one expert suggests, if on Skpe, “don’t get caught with your pants down.”

Debra Auerbach’s tips include “staying focused, getting energized, checking out your technology before maing the call, make a cheat sheet and dress the part.”

Here is more from Monster Senior Contributing Writer Peter Vogt:

You just got word that you landed a job interview with a company that really interests you — only there’s a slight catch.

You won’t be meeting with your interviewer(s) face to face. Instead, you’ll be taking part in a phone interview, the results of which will determine whether you’re invited to meet with company representatives in person.

Many companies use phone interviews as an initial employment screening technique for a variety of reasons. Because they’re generally brief, phone interviews save companies time. They also serve as a more realistic screening alternative for cases in which companies are considering out-of-town (or out-of-state and foreign) candidates.

So the chances are pretty good that, at some point in your job hunt, you’ll be asked to participate in a 20- to 30-minute phone interview with either one person or several people on the other end of the line. In many ways, the way you prepare for a phone interview isn’t all that different from the way you’d get ready for a face-to-face interview — save for a few slight additions to and modifications of your list of preparation tasks.

Here’s what to do:

  • Treat the phone interview seriously, just as you would a face-to-face interview.
  • Have your resume and cover letter in front of you.
  • Make a cheat sheet.
  • Get a high-quality phone.
  • Shower, groom and dress up (at least a little).
  • Stand up, or at least sit up straight at a table or desk.

A phone interview seems so informal on the surface that it can be easy to fall into the trap of “phoning it in” — i.e., not preparing for it as well as you would for an in-person interview. Don’t get caught with your guard down. Be sure to research the company, study the job description, and practice your responses to anticipated questions, just as you would for any other interview.

You’ll almost certainly be asked about some of the information that appears on these documents. You might also want to have in front of you any supporting materials that relate to information in your resume and cover letter, like documents you’ve designed or written, a portfolio of your various projects, or the written position description from your key internship.

Jot down a few notes about the most critical points you want to make with your interviewer(s). Are there certain skills and experiences you want to emphasize? Do you have certain interests or passions you want your interviewer(s) to know about and understand? Be sure these pieces of information appear on your crib sheet. Then touch on them during the interview, even if your only chance to do so is at the end of the session when the interviewer asks you if you have any questions or anything to add.

This isn’t the time to use a cellphone that cuts in and out, or a cheaply made phone that makes it difficult for you and your interviewer(s) to hear and understand each other.

Odd advice? Perhaps. But focusing on your appearance, just as you would for a normal interview, will put you in the right frame of mind from a psychological standpoint. You won’t do as well in your phone

interview if you’re lying in bed, for example, or if you’re draped over your couch in your pajamas.

Again, there’s a psychological, frame-of-mind aspect to consider here. But on a more tangible level, research has shown that you project yourself better when you’re standing up, and you’ll feel more knowledgeable and confident.

Phone interviews can be tricky, especially since you aren’t able to read your interviewers’ nonverbal cues like facial expressions and body language during the session — a big difference from the typical interview. But if you prepare well for your phone interview, you won’t need to read anyone’s nonverbals to gauge your performance. You’ll know for sure how you’ve done because you’ll be invited to a face-to-face interview, where you’ll have yet another opportunity to prove you’re the best person for the job.

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More Interview Prep: Top questions for interviews

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Variations of these questions are most likely to be asked during a job interview, according to ‘’ and Gannett News Service.

Do not hesitate to visit>student resources.handouts for many more interview and resume tips.

  • What are your goals?
  • What are your weaknesses?
  • Why did you leave your last job?
  • What was your greatest take-away from your internship?
  • If you are working, when were you most satisfied with your job?
  • From what you’ve learned about this company from your research, what can you do for us that other candidates might not?
  • What are the positive things your boss would say about you?
  • If you were having a dinner party and could invite three famous people plus two others (not so famous), who would they be and why?

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Resume guide: 3 tips from ‘’ to make your resume standout

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Interview with Paddy Hirsch

Marketplace Morning Report for Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Link to podcast is below:

On Friday, the Labor Department will report its latest monthly jobs report, which will reveal how many jobs were added in February and whether the unemployment rate budged from 7.9 percent.

If you are hitting the job market, the one thing you’ll need is a good resume. But how do you get yours to the top of the heap?

Paddy Hirsch, senior producer of personal finance at Marketplace, has these tips:

1. Create two resumes, a search-engine-optimized (SEO) version and a regular version. If you are applying through a search engine, such as Monster or Jobscore, a computer completes a first pass of all applicant resumes before a human ever reads them.

2. Make your SEO resume plain and include keywords. Use bold type sparingly. Format everything to the left side of the page. And make sure everything is spelled correctly. Search algorithms tally up the number of keywords in order to evaluate resumes. The easier you can make it for the computer to find keywords, the better.

3. Old resume rules still apply. After you’ve gotten past the computer review, your resume will be read by a human. Make sure it is clearly written, typo-free, and emphasizes relevant work experience.

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Internships become the new job requirement


While some university programs no longer require internships, students are urged to pursue them. Here is a March 4, 2013 report from: The numbers speak for themselves. This links you to the podcast and story: (copy and paste if link is not working properly)

By the time most kids are in high school, they’ve probably heard some career advice along these lines: get into a good college, pick a marketable major, keep those grades up, and you’ll land a good job. But that doesn’t quite cover it anymore.

In a survey out today from Marketplace and The Chronicle of Higher Education, employers said what matters most to them actually happens outside the classroom.

“Internships came back as the most important thing that employers look for when evaluating a recent college graduate,” says Dan Berrett, senior reporter at the Chronicle. “More important than where they went to college, the major they pursued, and even their grade point average.”

Colleges have been listening. This year the State University of New York, or SUNY, system is piloting cooperative education on nine of its campuses. In co-ops, students work in paid jobs with faculty supervision and earn credit toward their degrees.

“Our goal is that all 465,000 students who enroll annually at SUNY have some sort of experiential education experience,” says SUNY chancellor Nancy Zimpher.

Kristin Hayes is one of the first students at Stony Brook University, on Long Island, to do a co-op. She’ll work part-time helping care for disabled adults at a group home run by the non-profit YAI Network. Hayes is a biology major and plans to apply to graduate school to become a physician’s assistant.

“To be a competitive applicant, you really need to have a variety of experience,” she says. “I really wanted to get more experience in the field.”

David Carter wishes he’d followed his professors’ advice to do an internship in college. He graduated two years ago from the University of Massachusetts Lowell, where he studied mechanical engineering. In spite of good grades and a practical major, Carter hasn’t been able to find work.

“If I had done an internship, then I wouldn’t have been sitting on my thumbs the last two years, trying to find a job,” he says.

The numbers back him up. In a recent student survey, the National Association of Colleges and Employers found that 63 percent of paid interns in the class of 2012 had at least one job offer when they graduated. Of those who did no internship, only about 40 percent had an offer.

About the author

Amy Scott is Marketplace’s education correspondent covering the K-12 and higher education beats, as well as general business and economic stories.