Are you ready to master the art of resume crafting? Get set to ascend your career ladder as we join forces with Porschia Parker-Griffin of Fly High Coaching. Discover the art of creating an engaging resume and the importance of regular updates. Listen as Porschia unravels her top tricks and tips to grab the attention of recruiters, even with a long career history. Plus, learn about the services that Fly High Coaching provides to build you that perfect resume.
In this enriching conversation, Porschia shares her inspiring journey into the coaching field and her unwavering passion for assisting individuals in reaching their career goals. We explore her credentials, the choice of the Institute for Professional Excellence in Coaching (IPEC) for her certification, and why she believes it's the best. Then, we shift gears to delve deep into professional resume writing. Understand the process of working with a professional resume writer, what to expect, and how to address a career gap on a resume.
As we wrap up, Porschia highlights the critical role of professional resume writers and the importance of showing up for interviews. We conclude the episode with her valuable advice on building Your Mid-Career GPS one mile or one step at a time. So, whether you're looking for help with your resume, navigating a career transition, or simply want to advance your career, this episode is a must-listen.
To connect with Porschia and her team about their resume writing, LinkedIn makeover and other career coaching services, visit https://www.fly-highcoaching.com/.
Thank you for listening to The Mid-Career GPS Podcast.
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Visit https://johnneral.com to download your free guide, "5 Mistakes Mid-Career Professionals Make (And Need to Stop Doing) and more information about your leadership and career transition. And other free resources at https://johnneral.com/resources.
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If you're polishing your resume or dusting it off to get ready to apply for jobs in the upcoming weeks or months, this episode is for you. But even if you're not actively job seeking, before you change this episode, I want you to know that I firmly believe that if you're happy with your job, you should update your resume once a year. There is valuable information here that will save you time and energy when it comes to updating or writing your resume and help you with your next performance review. In this best of episode, I'm replaying one of my most downloaded conversations with resume expert and career coach, Porschia Parker Griffin, the CEO and founder of Fly High Coaching. You will learn what you should and should not do when it comes to your resume so you can have a better advantage when it comes to navigating the AI or applicant tracking system and increase your chances of getting an interview, which could lead to your next advancement opportunity. Let's get started. Hello, my friends, this is episode 174 of the Mid-Career GPS podcast. I'm your host, John Neral. I help mid-career professionals who feel stuck, undervalued and underutilized show up to find a job they love, or love the job they have, by using my proven four step formula. Now, if you're looking for some help in navigating your career transition, please check the show notes or visit my website at https://johnneral. com to download my free guide called Five Mistakes Mid-Career Professionals Make a Need to Stop Doing. And while you're there, make sure to check out the resources tab on my website for other information as well. Now we all know that resumes are necessary in any job search or career transition, but let's face it, most of you listening are not expert resume writers, yet you think you can do it. You end up wasting a lot of time trying to figure out something you admittedly aren't good at, and certainly within the last few years, how resumes are processed and written has changed. That's why my conversation with Portia Parker Griffin is critical to helping you understand the ins and outs of your resume and how companies use them as you navigate toward whatever is next for you and your career. I hope you enjoy this best of episode. Taking you back to episode 122 and my conversation with Porschia Parker Griffin, for five years I have relied on Portia Parker Griffin and her team of expert resume writers at Fly High Coaching to write all the resumes for my one-on-one coaching clients. I firmly believe in and support the work they do. Aside from delivering an expertly written, well-crafted resume, they are incredibly affordable and do phenomenal work. After you've listened to our conversation, if you want to get a professionally written resume, I highly recommend using Portia and her team at Fly High Coaching to do so. You can visit the show notes or visit https:// fly-highcoachingcom/resume and let them know you heard about them on the mid-career GPS podcast, but for now, sit back, get your notepad ready, because you're going to want to take some notes. My friends, I want you to meet Porschia Parker Griffin.Porschia Parker-Griffin:
I'm Porschia Parker Griffin. I'm founder and CEO of Fly High Coaching. We help our clients to really make strides in their career. We do that in a wide variety of ways, from coaching, helping with resumes and other professional writing documents and other things as well.John Neral:
No question, you and your team provide a phenomenal service. You know I'm a huge fan and I want people to get to know you a little bit more. So here's the question what did you want to be growing up?Porschia Parker-Griffin:
There were a few things. I think one of the first John was a veterinarian, so I love animals. I was one of those children that just wanted to play with all of the animals. I think veterinarian was probably one of the earliest memories I had in terms of career goals.John Neral:
Do you have pets now?Porschia Parker-Griffin:
No, I had a dog. Her name was Sunny and I had her from six weeks to 12 and a half years when she passed away, and so I'm a lifer and I'm still waiting to get my next dog. So I'm a dog person, but I love all animals.John Neral:
They are definitely a lot of work. They are absolutely parts of our family, but there's times and places right when our life is just really available to open our homes up. I think I told you we have a 21-pound rescue cat that we have named Amy Farah-Miauler after our love of the Big Bang Theory.Porschia Parker-Griffin:
Wow, I didn't know about 21 pounds, john, she's a chonk, I will send you one Absolutely.John Neral:
She absolutely runs the house without questions. So you have this desire, Portia, to be a veterinarian. Go through school. Where'd you end up going to college?Porschia Parker-Griffin:
I went to the University of Georgia and I think the veterinarian dream kind of ended somewhere, probably around elementary school, because I don't really like looking at the blood.John Neral:
Yeah, you and me both.Porschia Parker-Griffin:
I don't want to cut. So I want to help the animals, but I don't really want to deal with the blood and cutting and all that good stuff. So by the time I went to college I had decided that I wanted to be a psychology major.John Neral:
Did you get the degree in that?Porschia Parker-Griffin:
I did, I did. I have an undergraduate degree in psychology and right now I'm working on a master's degree in industrial and organizational psychology. So digging deeper into the workplace with psychology.John Neral:
What a fantastic field, especially in light of everything that is going on right now, when we see and hear conversations about returning to the work site and company culture. I know that's such a passion of yours in terms of how people align in their careers and they find their best jobs, and everything what made you get into coaching.Porschia Parker-Griffin:
That's a great question, john. Honestly, I had heard about it and I saw something on TV, so this would have been in like 2012. So long time ago, before coaching became as mainstream as it is now, and I saw something about it and I said I don't know what that is. Then I saw something about it again and I said you know what? I have a degree in psychology, but I've never heard of this coaching thing. Let me check it out. So I did some research and I said oh my goodness, this is what I always wanted to do but never knew existed. So from that point, I just really thought that this is something I can be passionate about when it comes to helping other people and then hopefully turn this into a business and a career for myself.John Neral:
What is it that you love the most about coaching?Porschia Parker-Griffin:
I think I love the transformation, so I really like helping people to reach their goals and I say this to my clients, but I want them to win. So, as a coach, as you know, it's about the client's agenda. They come to you with these goals or things that they want to work on, and I like helping people to transform from where they are to where they want to be.John Neral:
Where did you get your coaching certification from?Porschia Parker-Griffin:
The Institute for Professional Excellence in Coaching, known as IPEC, a place that you know well Toted.John Neral:
I, yes, I love asking this question about why IPEC? There's a lot of coaching certification programs out there and, to our point, varying in price points as well. What was it about IPEC's program that you believe set you up for the success you have today?Porschia Parker-Griffin:
That's a great question, john. I don't think anybody I know no one's asked me that in a podcast and maybe very few have individually. So I'm a researcher, I will dig deep into the details. And so when I found out about coaching, I dug into the different coach you know programs that were out there's a lot more out now than were back in 2012, but I found IPEC and one I was looking for a comprehensive program and I could tell that their program was comprehensive. I could tell that they had tools. I could tell that they had strategies and all it seemed like the support that you needed to really get off the ground with being a coach. And then I also liked that they had a community. So I could tell that back in 2012, where they had, you know, different cities where they did these, their modules and the trainings and all of that. And those were some of the main things that helped IPEC come to the top of the list for me.John Neral:
And I can agree with all of those because it was the same thing for me. And you find yourself now in the career space Obviously your company with Fly High Coaching and helping people in their career path and career transition. Why was career coaching the place that was the best fit for you, as opposed to say, general life coaching? Ooh, that's a good question.Porschia Parker-Griffin:
So I was always really interested in the career space. And another thing to John back in 2012, there weren't a ton of career coaches either. So most of the coaches like in my IPEC training were wanted to be life coaches. There were some people that wanted to be relationship coaches and then maybe a couple of people who wanted to do corporate. So I was the only person in my cohort, I'll say, that was interested in career and just something about the journey, I think, and the transitions that we see clients and I know you see this too going through in their career. Something about that was just so appealing to me. Also, I was younger then, obviously, and I was 25 at the time, so I also had all of that mindset junk around who's gonna listen to me as a coach when it comes to life and whatnot? People are gonna just think, oh, you're too young to understand, even though from a more corporate perspective, I'd had a lot of success in consulting and in the business world. So the career space to me just seemed like a natural fit for me to jump in and help people and help people.John Neral:
You do, and it's one of the things I absolutely respect and admire about the work that you do, because you provide a lot of services, and I wanted to talk to you today in part because of your expertise around resumes. So anybody that's listening to our conversation today has a resume. Where they can find it on their computer is a completely different story. They may or may not have a hard copy of it, but we know they have a resume somewhere, and for anybody who is an active job seeker or someone who's considering a career transition, one of the first things that they're going to start to worry about is their resume. My first question for you today is from your view, what's the purpose of a resume?Porschia Parker-Griffin:
Ooh well, to keep it succinct, I think is going to be a challenge here, because I think there are so many purposes to your resume. I think a resume is an introduction to who you are. I think that it is a place to really tell the story of your career. So I think, if I try to keep it succinct, those would be the top two purposes, I think of your resume.John Neral:
Getting a little technical for a moment. There are different types of resumes that job seekers will need to consider. Can you give us that high-level overview of the different types of resumes that someone might consider using for their job search?Porschia Parker-Griffin:
Yeah, so the top two that people generally use are either a chronological resume or a functional resume. The chronological resume is generally what most people think of when they think of their career progression and going backwards, right. So starting with the most recent position that you've been in and then working backwards in your career and then showing the dates that you were in each position and the content for each section is kind of listed together. A functional resume, on the other hand, is broken up a little bit differently. In those resumes usually people, towards the top, list out different functions, right, or tasks, projects, responsibilities that they've had, and they're all kind of listed together, or they might be grouped by different projects, and then at the end, generally in a functional resume, they just list literally the job title that they had and the organization that they worked for, but all of the content and what they've done is in one section, so it's not broken out by job.John Neral:
How long should the resume be?Porschia Parker-Griffin:
That depends on where you are in your career, as you know right, is someone in mid-career, is someone early career, is someone late career, and then also what industry they're in. So the kind of short resume writer rule of thumbs that are out there. Generally, if someone has between seven to 10 years or less of experience, a lot of times that can be put on one page of the resume. Generally, if someone has 10 or more years of experience, a lot of times that is more appropriate as a two-page resume. And of course there are exceptions to every rule. How long you've been in certain jobs and how many different positions you've had in 10 years or more, all of that can perhaps affect the one to two-page resume recommendation that we might give someone. But at a high level those are what you would see. And then on an industry basis, a lot of times it's more common for people in IT, for example, to have a two to three-page resume, and then sometimes executives or clients with a lot of experience, they might have a two to three-page resume. And then, as you know, academic professionals generally have a CV that is usually a bit longer than the two to three pages. So it really kind of depends on where you are in your career and what kind of jobs you're also targeting.John Neral:
I know there is someone who is listening to our conversation, that is sitting there, or they're driving or they're running. Whatever they're doing and they're saying I have a lot of experience. I have a lot of experience that's valuable to somebody, and so I want to have a three-page resume and I want it to cover everything that I have done in my career. How do you talk them away from that?Porschia Parker-Griffin:
So I generally start that conversation by saying we've got to look at the audience and so by the time you get to a human being, so the first audience which I know we're going to get into is actually software technology. That's the first audience for the resume. But when we think about the first human audience audience for your resume, that's generally a recruiter and if you're applying for a large company or corporation, generally that's a more junior level recruiter. And when they've done research, generally your average recruiter is only giving your resume a glance. That's between five to 10 seconds and if your resume does not capture their attention in that five to 10 second glance, it's going in the no pile. So while you may think I need to throw everything in the kitchen sink in my resume and it should be three or more pages you've got to really remember that you've got that short amount of time to capture that recruiter's attention and the whole goal of your resume for most people is to get to the interview. So you've got to get to the point in a succinct way to get that attention, make them interested in you, to get to that interview.John Neral:
I appreciate so much your comment about knowing your audience and starting with that software technology, that applicant tracking system that's going to do that initial screen or comparison about your resume and lined up to the job posting to see, quote, unquote, if you qualify, to go into that yes pile. Basically, for someone who is doing the resume themselves, what is it that they have to know about that artificial intelligence to help them have a better chance of clearing that electronic screen, if you will, and get them into a yes pile?Porschia Parker-Griffin:
Great question, john. So the first thing that you have to think about, especially if you're trying to do the resume yourself, is you've got to think about the targeted job that you're applying for. So that software technology applicant tracking systems ATS, is what you'll hear a lot. That system is looking for the right keywords in the right frequency to determine if your resume is a good fit for the job. And if it does not find those keywords, then your resume gets filtered out, quite frankly, and then most of the time it's filtered out before a human being in recruiting or HR is ever going to see it. So you've got to know what job you're applying for and that will let you know the keywords that should be on your resume. And I think this is a really good point, john, to add this, because this software technology has been around for years but it's really increased in popularity in the last, I would say, five or so years. In the past, 10, 15, 20 plus years ago, people could say and I know you've heard this just make me a general resume, or I just want a general resume to help me. Well, the software technology that we're talking about is not compatible with a general resume, if you think that one resume is going to help you find jobs that are different types of jobs, so different job titles or functionally different roles. It's not going to be effective and that's one thing that I see a lot of people that they just don't know, or they think that that's going to help them, so that software technology is going to screen out a general resume.John Neral:
It's not going to be compatible and moving forward in the process, I'm glad you went there, because it is important, as we know, for job seekers to customize their resume, but to do that with some work. It's not just a matter of changing a word here or there. It's really about looking at the job posting, as you mentioned, about the frequency of the words, the verbs, the types of descriptions that that person would be doing in that new role, and I think the other point to make here too, though, is that it's a waste of time and energy to just take that quote unquote general resume and just send it out there and not give yourself the best chance of clearing that search with the ATS.Porschia Parker-Griffin:
I could not agree with you more, john. And what's so difficult with helping clients with their resumes and prospective clients is a lot of people think that if they get help with their resume or they pay a professional to help them, that it means that they don't know how to write or that they're doing something wrong. I had one client tell me I got a 4.0 in my master's program at this large, recognizable university. I should be able to just write a stink in resume, and he had been struggling for a year and his aunt actually introduced him to me and he was thinking that if he got help, something was wrong with him, when that's not the case. There's just all of this technology out there. That's not common knowledge and that is really specific in detail, as we're talking about specific keywords for a specific job. You don't know when teaches you this kind of stuff. That all of that is to say that's why really being targeted and getting some help can be really important. And then the second part of it is it's the gambling right. So a lot of people just say, hey, I'm going to just try it with my own resume, but when they really think about it, if they haven't done this targeted work that we're talking about. You are potentially missing out on opportunities for jobs that might be 10, 20, 30,000 or double your salary. Would you gamble on that when it comes to a resume?John Neral:
You remind me of a point in time in my life when I was leaving my teaching career and I was looking for that administrative job and I was doing all of the things that we're talking about. I said to myself I'm smart, I've written resumes before, I know how to do it. And I had my general resume of sending it out and everything, and at the time I was looking for positions within the federal government. Of course we know that's a whole different animal and beast of a resume in and of itself on some level. And I was trying to do it myself and a dear friend of mine at the time said to me why do people pay you to tutor their children? And I said I'm a great math teacher, I know how to diversify instruction and get the kid to learn and see things differently, and I'm going to help them improve their test scores. And she said are you an expert resume writer? And I said no and she goes then why the hell would you try to be doing it yourself? Stop being so damn cheap and pay someone to do it. And it was that smack upside the head and I thought, oh my gosh, the amount of time that I am spending trying to do this on my own to save a few bucks. I could be using that time differently in hiring a professional resume writer and I did. And I use that resume for the rest of my career.Porschia Parker-Griffin:
Yes, yeah, to your point. It's an investment. It's an investment and you can use that resume moving forward and we have discounts for our clients, our returning clients, where we just update it for you as you get these new jobs. And you're right, you don't have to reinvent the wheel again once you have a great foundation for your resume. And then to your point, john. I was talking to a prospective client before she decided to work with us and she had that epiphany on the phone. She said you know, you're right, you wouldn't do your own dental work, go to a dentist. And I said, yeah, you're right. And she was like, so I shouldn't try to do my own dental work here. And so when you told that story, maybe think of that client.John Neral:
I love that story. That's great. What a great analogy. So if somebody is interested in hiring a professional writer resume writer and specifically, if they want to go to fly high coaching and hire you or someone on your team, what can they expect in terms of the process and the engagement to help them get a professionally written resume that's going to serve them?Porschia Parker-Griffin:
Yeah, great, great question and honestly, I've talked to people who have worked with other companies and the process has varied, but generally with us we like to get some information from our clients up front. So they fill out a questionnaire. That is a brief questionnaire, but we want to know some of the really important information from your perspective. So we want to know what you like about your current resume, maybe what areas you think should be improved with your current resume. And then also that important question to what we were talking about before what kind of jobs are you targeting? And we also ask our clients to provide links to specific job postings online, if they have them, and we can use those for reference. Right, we can go out and look at those jobs, look at similar jobs and make sure that our positioning when it comes to keywords is spot on for what they're looking for. So that's the first part of the process. They fill out that questionnaire, they attach the resume and additional information. At that point we get that internally and we review it. We make sure that everything makes sense and that we don't have any other fundamental questions. At that point they receive an email from us after they've paid securely online and we might have some additional questions for them. To get started, our standard turnaround time for the first draft is about four to five business days. Now, every company is a little different. I've had clients say that a company wanted them to wait a month to get the first draft of their resume, which I think is an excessive amount of time. But you can expect to get that first draft and then with, I think, most reputable companies because again, I've heard different things here there should be a time period for you to go back and forth with edits and to communicate directly with your writer. If you're interviewing a professional resume writing company and you do not have a connection via an email address for the writer of your resume, that's a red flag. Our clients, they get the email address of their lead writer and they can communicate until the resume is finalized.John Neral:
Well, I'm just going to reiterate what. I shared in the intro, but everything you just described is the reason why I refer all of my clients to you and your company to get their resume written. It is the care, the attention, the quality service, the details that you all provide, and both for my clients and yours. We know our clients get jobs and their resume serves them, and it goes without saying. Once again, I just appreciate our partnership in this because very early on, as you know, when I started, I don't like writing resumes it's not my thing, I'm not good at it but you and your team are phenomenal at it and I want everybody who's listening here to hear this, as this is an investment that you can make in your career that reaps its benefits far beyond the onset. If you knew you had a resume that accurately described who you are and what you do, was tailored to the job posting, had the best chance of clearing that artificial intelligence that was going to accurately represent your brand that you have there, why would you not want to invest? I'm sure you and I both know we know people who have gifted resumes to people for birthdays or holidays and said use this.Porschia Parker-Griffin:
Yes, yes, you said a lot of great information there, John One. I want to say that we appreciate our partnership with you as well. You do tremendous and amazing work. We are fans of your book, the Mid-Career GPS, and your podcast. And to your point about gifting the resumes, yes, we actually have a referral program. We have a referral program where our current clients can refer someone in their network for a resume and they get a gift card that they can use at different retailers and restaurants, because giving that gift is so important. And then we've done resumes for whole families mothers, sons, wives Because of that transformation that you just mentioned. Right, when someone's career changes like that, it just opens up a whole new world for them and they want to share that with their family members and the people in their network. So absolutely.John Neral:
We're going to start wrapping up here in a minute, but there is one question that I'm sure some of the listeners have and that is addressing a career gap. So people who maybe have been laid off they've taken some time off to raise their family what is the best or what's your recommendation for honoring or acknowledging a work gap? Quote unquote even though they're still probably working doing other things. But what is your recommendation for acknowledging an employment gap, if you will, on someone's resume?Porschia Parker-Griffin:
Yeah, great question. So, yes, a lot of people have taken different breaks and had gaps in their resume for different reasons. Everyone's resume is unique, as you know, like every client is unique, so it really involves us getting into their story a little bit to figure it out. But at a high level, I think that you can include other things that you were doing right. So, were you doing volunteer work? Were you taking training courses and learning a new skill? Were you getting a new degree? What was going on during that gap? There are usually creative ways that we can include that on your resume that are relevant to your current career goals and I think, honestly, once people kind of see what they were doing on their resume, a lot of times they have more confidence about having that discussion about the gap right, because I think the first step is acknowledging the career gap on the resume, but even more importantly and I'm sure you cover this in your new interview series talking about that gap right With a recruiter or a hiring manager is also really important. So the resume sets the foundation for that conversation.John Neral:
Excellent advice. Thank you for that. Speaking of advice, what advice would you give for someone to help them build their mid-career GPS?Porschia Parker-Griffin:
Well, that is a really, really interesting question. When I think about who people are, I think it's important for them to get really clear on that, right. So they need to understand their personal values, to know where they want to go in their career. They need to understand their personality, right. So what are their strengths, what are their weaknesses, what are things that they do that are easy for them but might be difficult for other people? Right? And then, as part of understanding who they are, they need to understand their career vision, and I love that you have zeroed in on mid-career, john, because I really think that mid-career can be the best time for people to get clarity around their vision and where they want to go and to create that plan to get there and then, obviously, from there, start taking the action to get there. So I think it's really about clarity when you're in your mid-career to set up the rest of your career for success.John Neral:
Great advice, thank you, and thank you for all of that. I appreciate you so much. Portia, I'm going to turn the mic over to you now. I would love for you to just share where people can find you, connect with you, learn more about you and your company's services. The mic shares.Porschia Parker-Griffin:
Well, thank you. I think the easiest place to find us is on our website, which is wwwfly-hi-coachingcom. When you go to our website, you can find information about our coaching services, our resume writing services. We have a new podcast called the Career 101 podcast. You can find that information on the website as well, so that's, I would say, the number one place to go. And then, obviously, we are on social media, so you can find our page on LinkedIn and Facebook.John Neral:
I will make sure all of that is in the show notes. Thank you again for spending some time with us breaking down all of the ins and outs for us about resumes. To help my listeners today Just get a little more awareness and some more knowledge and share some tips, but also to open up the conversation about why they may need a professional resume writer. And I hope they come your way.Porschia Parker-Griffin:
Thank you so much, John. This has been great.John Neral:
Thank you so much, portia. My friends, I want to thank you for spending some time with us today. Remember to visit johnnarrellcom for more information and remember we build our mid-career GPS one mile or one step at a time, and how we show up matters. Make it a great rest of your day.