Free Stallings career workshop offers tips, techniques
Stallings Councilman Paul Frost knows what it’s like to be out of a job and looking for work. In fact, he’s been laid off twice in his 10-year career.
He describes a career workshop he attended following one layoff as “life changing” and hopes to pass this knowledge along. “I have a lot of empathy for those looking for a job,” said Frost, who now works as vice president for commercial lending at BB&T. “I’d like to give others in the community access to the same job strategies I was given.”
Frost will offer the free career workshop – lunch is included – on Jan. 22 from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. in the Stallings Civic Building, 323 Stallings Road.
The workshop addresses how most people get jobs through word of mouth, Frost explained. “You need to be clear about what kind of job you are looking for,” he said. On a personal level, “it helped me realize the importance of being clear and concise and helped me find a job more quickly.”
To help people find jobs faster, the workshop will address how to list personal and professional skills and accomplishments in a quantifiable way and how to speak aloud about them.
“It’s called an elevator speech,” Frost said. “It’s your 30 seconds to sell yourself to a potential employer.”
The workshop offers interview and resume-writing techniques, as well as tips about professional networking. “There’s a whole culture of shame surrounding unemployment,” Frost said. “This needs to be addressed in order to properly network and uncover potential job leads.”
Frost’s career workshop is not just for those out of a job. Anyone who might look for a new job in the next three to five years can benefit from learning how to talk about yourself in a convincing way.
Frost calls it “the mechanics of getting some to hire you.”
Although unemployment figures for the last quarter of 2010 will not come out until later this winter, quarterly statistics reported in October were encouraging. In October, the unemployment rate in Union County had dropped from a high of 11.4 percent in January to 8.4 percent, with a steady decline since June. Union also appears to be faring better than many other parts of the state, with the state unemployment rate at 9.9 percent.
While employment numbers are looking up, “the holidays are sure to have an impact” on quarterly figures, Monroe’s Employment Security Commission Manager Judy Carpenter said. So learning to stand out from the crowd remains critical.
Previous career workshops held via Mecklenburg Ministries at Frost’s church received positive feedback. According to Frost, a human resource associate at Wachovia helped to co-facilitate the class in the past and described it as “more effective than outplacement services provided by many major corporations.”
Frosts asks anyone interested in attending the workshop to reserve a place by contacting him at 704-661-7252 or at firstname.lastname@example.org no later than Jan. 20.