4 essential ingredients for your jobsearch

Photo by miriam_kato

Last night, everyone gathered around our table. In years past, that was a normal occasion but now it is infrequent. My husband dines with his dad on Monday through Saturday as part of his role as caregiver. My sons, who still live here, are on earlier schedules than I might choose to eat and often have plans to do other things.

The Packers were playing late and the guys all were back from working on my sons’ house. We would watch the 7pm game and we would eat dinner together, my family of four plus two of my sons’ friends, regulars at our house. I planned a complete menu: Kale & White Bean Soup, King Alaskan Salmon with Pineapple Strawberry Salsa, Roasted Red Potatoes, and Acorn Squash.

The soup recipe came from Chef on A Shoestring, a feature on CBS Saturday Early Show. My husband and I had just shopped so I just bought the kale and the white beans but I didn’t print the recipe or write down the ingredients, so there were items I didn’t have on hand, like the white miso paste or even tomato paste. I was also missing a few of the herbs so I substituted with ingredients I did have on hand.

This is how I cook much of the time, substituting or sometimes not even using a recipe. It can have great results or really bad results. Cooking is one thing, your job search is another.

Key Ingredients for your job search

While you can use different recipes for job search and achieve success, you have to keep some of the key ingredients in for it to work:

  1. You can’t forget to keep the reader reading with value-infused Tell Me Why statements as you ponder how to write your resume and eliminate any dinosaurs in your resume.
  2. You need to make sure that your cover letter is on the right track as a sales tool and you aren’t confused by the 6 common misconceptions about cover letters.
  3. You want to use the back door to find ways to network or connect your way into the company rather than only relying on your online submission.
  4. And if you are submitting online, you want to make sure you follow these 8+ tips for getting your online application read so it can get you into the interview stream.

If you follow the four points above, you will succeed in your job search or career change. It’s a time-tested, proven recipe!


  1. Gee Backhouse on November 8, 2010 at 7:25 am

    What a great post Julie! How true it is that when it comes to specific objectives then the key skills and techniques, the “ingredient”s of success, play a vital role.
    Sorry I wasn’t there to share that delicious meal! Gee.

    • Julie Walraven on November 8, 2010 at 7:34 am

      Thank you, Gee for the RT and comment! You are so right. Yes, there are leftovers but I am sure that the distance means you will not be here soon enough.

  2. Ed Han on November 8, 2010 at 9:06 am

    As an avid foodie, I love the metaphor, Julie! I’m reminded of something a chef I like often says: “Teach someone a recipe, they can make a dish. Teach someone a technique and they can make a hundred.”

    Excellent advice too, of course!

    • Julie Walraven on November 8, 2010 at 9:22 am

      Mmmmm… more things we have in common, Ed! We’ll have to chat about food sometime! This recipe is so healthy and yummy that I could see remaking in the future. I am already hunting for the books by the chef, Kim Barnouin, with the controversial title “Skinny B—ches” but great advice.

      You are so right… let’s keep teaching!

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Julie Walraven

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