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In this interview series, we caught up with Douglas Levin from JobStars USA LLC who shares her expertise and insights about job search, career change,etc.in today’s marketplace.

Tell us a little bit about your company

JobStars USA is a general practitioner of career services (mainly Resume Writing and Career Coaching) for entry through executive-level professionals.

How did you get started?

A confluence of events, personal interests, and life circumstances led me to the starting point of this journey as a small business owner / career practitioner.

Is this something you decided early on in your career?

Coming out of undergrad (’05) I worked at CareerBuilder in a few different roles. This happened to be a period of massive disruption and a period of excitement, as the new digital landscape was emerging.

Long story short, one of my titles was “Operations Analyst – cbResume”.  I basically managed all aspects of the company’s Resume Writing Service (aka cbResume).

It was a two-year crash-course on running a Resume Service. Some time later, after earning my MBA, I quit my job at CareerBuilder and set forth on a journey to start a business of my own.

What is the best Career Advice you’ve ever received?

The best career advice I’ve received from someone else is to avoid quitting your job, until you have something else lined up. You never know how long your unemployment stint may last.

Also, when you are employed there’s actually more leverage in landing another job. Whereas, if you’re unemployed, you may be viewed as a less desirable candidate than a similar counterpart who is gainfully employed.

What is the most exciting part of working in this industry?

Bar none, the most exciting and/or rewarding thing is hearing success stories from past clients.

I also really enjoy the interaction of working with professionals of all industries and experience levels. I am constantly learning new things.

How do to stay abreast of the industry as an expert?

I do a lot of blogging and self-exploration.

I also rely on leadership within PARW and CTL to disperse valuable information that keeps me abreast of goings-on.

What are some of the things that you see job seekers struggle with the most?

Job seekers struggle with personal insecurities like physical appearance, age, and on and on. Interviewing is scary for many people.

What are the common mistakes that you see them do?

Coming across as a jack of all trades.

It’s very important to narrow your focus and take options off the table, instead of trying to play the field.

How should job seekers approach job search today?

Job seekers must use all the tools and resources at their disposal.

Avoid being overly reliant on any single job search method. Mix it up and don’t be lazy!

Unemployment is at the lowest levels, why do you think that is?

Companies are innovating, technology is spurring growth in all new ways. Let’s hope for more of the same!

What is the biggest trend(s) you see that job seekers will face in the next 2-3 years?

Video interviewing will be on the rise. Wouldn’t be surprised if LinkedIn were to roll-out the option to record a video bio (rather than a written one). Things like that, more interactivity via technology.

What is one advice you would give someone just out of college today?

Try a bunch of different stuff!

What is one advice you would give someone who is switching careers?

Figure out what you want. Get very specific.

Then, take actions toward that goal Simply tweaking your Resume to highlight transferable skills isn’t going to cut it.

Consider pursuing a certification in the new career, or, go back to school for a degree in the new concentration.

How should job seekers get the most out of LinkedIn?

Learn to demonstrate proper LinkedIn etiquette.

Don’t be pushy or needy. Don’t send invitations to connect with people who don’t know you.

Find ways to participate and engage (join groups, follow hashtags, write posts, participate in discussions, share content, etc). 

What is the biggest trend(s) you see that hiring managers will face in the next 2-3 years?

Hiring managers will probably continue to struggle filling their toughest positions because competition is fierce and the workforce may be somewhat diluted by the rise in self-employment / 1099 work.

What are your currently working on?

Bunch of different things!

One exciting thing is that we now offer B2B services (outplacement) for small parties.

What are the best resources you recommend to job seekers?

There’s so much good stuff out there, I wouldn’t know what to begin. Instead, I would like to share a link to a compilation of all the best resources that I’ve seen over the years.

What is the best way for our audience to reach you?

Submit a contact us message through our website – JobStars.

Connect with or Follow Doug Levin & JobStars on Social Media:

Douglas Levin and JobStars USA have also been featured in our recent compilation of the most resourceful career experts and career blogs –  Top Career Advice Websites.   

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