The Ultimate Guide to Acing Your Interviews

Tips to Help You Win the War for Talent

In the Salesforce ecosystem, the talent shortage is wreaking havoc on businesses trying to grow. Every hiring manager is under pressure to deliver, and many often feel held over a barrel retaining underperformers. By making a few simple tweaks to how you hire, you can beat your competition, accurately hire top employees, and improve your company and career. Here are a few best practices and behaviors my top clients incorporate, which have led to their exponential growth during the talent shortage. Tips to help you win the War for Talent.
  1. Assume every other company wants the candidate you want, too.
    • Act accordingly with speed and strong offers. 
      • To improve speed, block time on all interviewers’ calendars to prevent meeting delays.
      • Get budgetary sign-off before starting the hunt.
      • Have benefits and general offer paperwork pre-drafted.
      • Strong offers don’t have to mean more money, but they usually do. Unlimited PTO, fully remote work, and bonuses tied to business success and acquiring certifications are becoming commonplace. You’re better off paying for top employees and retaining them than flooding the floor with average employees.
  2. Compare candidates to your top employees first.
    • These comparisons matter more than how they compare to other candidates. The days of talking to 3-5 candidates for comparison have practically vanished for certain positions. You don’t need to speak to 5 architects if you already have two good ones on your team and understand how to interview.
  3. Get great at interviewing.
    • You probably don’t have 10,000 interviews under your belt, so here are a few shortcuts to having better discussions and making better decisions. 
      • Allow candidates to ask all their questions upfront. You’ll not only learn a ton about what is important to them, but they’ll also relax, having had their questions answered. This tip is straight out of Recruit Rockstars by Jeff Hyman
      • Sell before you screen. Candidates should clearly understand what they can expect from you as a manager, the company, growth opportunities, employee investments, clients, projects, culture, and work expectations. Once they understand that, screen them carefully. Leaders often pretend there’s a line out the door to get into their company when there isn’t. Don’t be that person.
      • Review a candidate’s work history by starting with their oldest job on the resume within 15 years. A more natural story of their career progression will unfold, and you’ll get more reliable information. After all, an interview shouldn’t feel like you’re watching Memento or Pulp Fiction. Keep the timeline simple. 
      • Focus on accomplishments and ask clarifying questions.
        • What are two accomplishments you are proud of at XYZ company?
        • How did you achieve it? 
        • Who else helped?
        • What was the aha moment?
        • What did you learn from that experience about your role?
        • About yourself?
      • Set clear expectations on when they can expect to hear back from you. Always follow up promptly to stay top of mind and show you care.
  4. Extend an offer to the first great candidate who makes it through your interview process.
    • Don’t wait for everyone else to finish. 1/2 of my clients hire the first candidate we present to them. The risk of losing a top candidate to a competitor or their current company is enormous. I estimate a 50% greater chance of a competing offer for top candidates this year than two years ago. Keep up with traffic, or you’ll get stuck in the slow lane.
When your business relies on top-performing professionals, recognize that hiring in this market is a competition. Play to improve your business and help your customers. Play to improve someone’s career. Play to improve your own. Most importantly, play to win.

How to Prepare for Your Next Video Interview

Video Interview best practice guide

Be Seen, Be Heard, Get Hired!

You’ve prepared for this life-changing career opportunity for weeks.

  • Resumé revamp — Check
  • LinkedIn refresh — Check
  • Network like a pro — Check
  • Articulated your value and accomplishments and practiced both — Check

It’s game time! A video interview with an amazing new company. The only problem is, your video interview game may not go as expected, leaving you wondering why there’s no call back or job offer.

Maybe you’ve been working remotely already. You might have conducted calls on Zoom or Google Meet for weeks, months, or years already — but that’s no guarantee that you’re doing everything right. Being a Salesforce Recruiter I’ve personally conducted more than 1,000 video interviews and, almost everyone has room to improve their online video interview strategy.

Know the stakes!

For some, getting this right is the difference between advancing their career, making tens of thousands of dollars in additional income, or getting some much needed life-balance back in order. It might mean getting out of debt — or staying out of it in the first place. The right new job can be a life-changer and I’ve seen countless candidates blow it, and it was 100% preventable. This is my roadmap to help you de-risk the most important meetings of your career.

For those conducting the interviews, a weak video interview can be the reason the top candidate you fell in love with is going to a competitor. Don’t miss an opportunity to truly connect with a top talent candidate. They want and need to feel connected to you.

Here’s how to ensure that nothing gets in the way of you becoming a real contender for your dream job or finding the top talent your company needs.

It’s time to start thinking like a filmmaker.

Great directors and producers know that they have a rectangle and some speakers to get an audience to buy into their vision. Now, you have to make a potential candidate or employer see your vision with the same restrictions: a rectangle and some speakers.

Gone are the handshakes, the lunch dates, the workplace tours, and the sense of energy you get walking into an office. No one is looking to see how nice your shoes are or if you’re fidgeting with your hands. By moving the conversation from an office to a laptop screen, a lot of information has been lost. It’s time to start putting more of it back in. 

I’ve broken this guide into 10 sections:

  1. Video Meeting Platforms
  2. Lighting 
  3. Cameras
  4. Framing 
  5. Set Design
  6. Audio – Microphones and Speakers
  7. 5 Ways to Manage Distractions 
  8. Body Language – Avoid Doing These 6 Things
  9. One-Way Interviews
  10. What’s Next

Video Interview And Meeting Platforms

When it comes to a video interview, the most common mistake people make is not preparing and testing their video conferencing platform in advance. This can cause delays once the time for the video interview comes—or even make it so you have to cancel altogether.

There are dozens of platforms you can use for video interviews, including:

  • Zoom
  • Google Meet
  • Spark Hire
  • Skype

Some of these, such as Zoom, will require you to download software beforehand. Do this as soon as you get the invitation. Your computer or phone may require a full system update to use the software, and you won’t know if you don’t try it out earlier enough to deal with potential issues.

Once you’ve downloaded the right software, created an account, or completed any other necessary steps to use a video call platform, test it out.

What could go wrong if you don’t? Plenty. The software could have trouble recognizing your microphone, speakers, or your camera. It may default to a lower quality camera or microphone, and you’ll need to become familiar with the settings beforehand to ensure everything is ready for opening the curtain.

Regardless, you want to make sure that once the time comes to sit down and talk with a potential candidate or employer, everything is good to go.  

Meagan Damrow, an HR professional from Advanced Technology Group shared

“I can’t count how many times we’ve spent 5+ minutes working with a candidate to test out the connection link and audio which then cuts into the time of the video interview. It sometimes also creates a lot of frustration for the candidate which can be very visible to the panel.”


All truly great videos have great lighting. Yours doesn’t need to be great, but it does need to be adequate. Heavy shadowing makes it a lot easier for someone to misinterpret your facial expression or body language, too. Don’t risk it!

Here’s what you need to know about lighting:

  1. Two lights are better than one.
  2. Three lights are better than two.
  3. The easiest and cheapest way to ensure good lighting is to face a well-lit window. DO NOT HAVE A BRIGHT WINDOW BEHIND YOU. That’s a major no-no. 

Because of compression, data is always lost on a video interview or meeting, so test your lighting for both daytime and nighttime meetings well in advance. Open up some video meeting software and take screenshots to compare. Play around with lighting and positioning until you find what works for you. Examples are coming up down below!

The person or people on the other side of the scheduled call have carved time out of their day to join the video interview. Don’t waste their time by failing to double-check that everything will work as it should.



There are three primary cameras most people use for video interviews and meetings. Each has its own advantages and disadvantages. Here’s the breakdown:

  1. Your Built-In Laptop Camera

    Your laptop’s built-in camera will typically be adequate if your computer is of good quality and was built within the last five years. Plus, usually, they’ll automatically connect to video conference software.

    On the other hand, the built-in camera often offers an unflattering angle, low and aimed upwards. (HACK: Raise your laptop with a laptop stand, a box, or a stack of books. I’ll show my set up in just a moment.)

  1. A Plug-In Webcam

    This is an easy upgrade to a laptop’s built-in camera and can come in a variety of quality standards.

    Because I hook my laptop up to a larger monitor, I use a plug-in webcam, and I appreciate the improved quality of the camera over my older MacBook Pro’s built-in. Many webcams will also come with built-in microphones and speakers which can help tackle audio issues as well.

    These webcams are generally designed to be flexible, so you can mount them directly above the image window of the person you’re talking to. This makes it seem as though you are looking right at the interviewer or candidate during the video call.

    However, a plug-in webcam will use up a USB port to operate, and your video conferencing software may not automatically detect it right away. Not to mention, it requires you to invest in additional equipment. That said, it’s often worth it.

  1. Your Smartphone Camera

    There’s nothing wrong with using your phone for a video interview meeting. They’re portable, allowing you more flexibility to schedule meetings, and the lenses and color software in newer phones allow for exceptional detail and clarity.

    But remember: When using a phone for a video interview or meeting, it is an absolute must that it be hands-free. Not only should you take notes, but you don’t want the other participants to get seasick or distracted as your caffeine tremors wiggle and jiggle the camera around, no matter how much you try to stay still.

    Without a tripod or stand, you’ll be betting your career on how steady your hand is, and you’re not even a surgeon.


 The Tripod I use for myself.

I’m a huge fan of small flexible tripod stands and use them regularly. You can wrap it around your steering wheel or desk for a convenient video interview in your office, car, or home. You can even stand your phone at eye level on your desk to provide a more natural visual with less neck strain.

 Tripod for phone stability during video interviews or meetings.



Your video meeting software is working, you’re well lit, and you have a good quality camera. Before we get into audio, we are going to stick with the visual side of a video interview.

To do that, we need to make sure that whatever’s in the frame (your rectangle) is in the right position, and that there’s nothing in the background that will harm anyone’s perception of you. This is called framing. 

Framing is the easiest thing in the world if you know what to do. However, most people blow this part, which it’s too bad. There’s information to be shared such as your breathing and what you do with your hands, all of which can help to convey confidence and build trust when communicating with others that is often left out due to sitting too close to the lens or positioning cameras that hide too much of our body.

Framing well is 100% free and requires no investment beyond a couple of minutes of practice. 

The shortcut is to think, “Newscaster at a news desk.”

Here’s Walter Cronkite showing us how it’s done. 

Best Head shot and Framing example

Your head and at least half of your upper body are visible. There’s a small space (about 5-10% of total height) between the top of your head and the top of the frame. By showing more of yourself, you’ll be able to bring your hands into view, the rise and fall of your breath, your shoulders if you shrug (or relax). You know…that whole body language thing that helps us communicate and build connections to others.

Do this:

Video Framing Techniques
 Good Camera Position

Don’t do this:

Bad Framing during live visual interview
 Bad real example

DO NOT POSITION YOUR CAMERA TO THE SIDE OF YOUR HEAD or look at the other participant on a different monitor. It’ important to face the person as though they were in the room with you. To help, position video window of the person you’re talking to as close to the lens of the camera as you can. Eye contact is key to bonding and communication, and this is the only way to get even close.

Set Design

Where you sit and what’s in frame with you matters. If you’re in your home office and it’s messy, clean it. You wouldn’t throw your ugly bathrobe on the back of a chair in a video interview room, so don’t do it online either.

It’s also perfectly fine for some of your personality to shine through. A family photo, an award or framed degree, or anything demonstrating an accomplishment can be a quick way to find common ground and develop rapport.

The big rule is DO NOT HAVE YOUR BED IN THE BACKGROUND. If you’re in a small apartment and options for settings are limited, good use of lighting can make up for this, or just find a blank wall somewhere.

Remember, DO NOT AIM YOUR CAMERA UPWARDS AT BRIGHT LIGHTS IN THE BACKGROUND. This is a rookie mistake and will completely botch your presentation. 

Green Screens and Digital Backgrounds

These can be terrific, especially if there’s a giant mess behind you and there’s no time to clean it up, or if the only place you can shoot is your bedroom. They can also be a terrific way to brand yourself with custom backdrops that highlight certifications and accomplishments. 

Warning: An overly pixelated background or the wrong background selection can both work against you. To ensure success with digital backgrounds, follow these tips:

  1. Don’t use GIFs, like flying through the clouds or crashing waves in the background. While they may show off your personality, the movement can be distracting. Remember NEWSCASTER at a desk! No crashing waves unless you’re reporting on Winter Storm Watch .
  2. You must be well lit. If not, the software can’t distinguish you from the background. You could end up with a fake bookshelf or the Golden Gate Bridge hiding your face.
  3. Watch what you wear. I know your lucky shirt is Kelly green, but you’ll be the invisible candidate or interviewer if you wear it against a digital background and haven’t selected the right preferences.
What do you wear when filming a green screen?
 Creepy Green Screen Example

What to Wear

Keep in mind that what you wear during a video interview is part of your set. A general rule is to wear whatever you normally would to this kind of meeting if it was in-person. Would you typically put on a button-up shirt? Then stick with that. Just make sure everything is ironed and clean. Fancy or expensive isn’t generally required—clean and pressed is.

Psychologically speaking, dressing well for an interview does have an impact on your own confidence. Just make sure it’s appropriate for the company and the role. Interviewers will assume this is you at your best, so if it isn’t, make it so. I’ve been seeing well paid professionals showing up to video interviews in sweats. For those of you who are getting a bit too comfy in the modern world, YOU ARE KILLING YOUR CHANCES when you don’t dress the part.  Pants and a shirt with a collar or blouse folks. That’s the minimum! Check out our Pant’s Guarantee


While it’d be great to just make faces into a camera and get a job, words matter, and your ability to hear and be heard can be compromised by the wrong gear. How many times have you had to rewind a show or movie to hear what the actor said? Annoying, right? Poor audio always is.

Here are your main options:

  1. Built-In Mics and Speakers

    All modern laptops and phones have built-in mics and speakers, as do many desktops and webcams. But that doesn’t necessarily mean that’s what you should use for a video interview.

    Like built-in cameras, the quality can vary greatly, and built-in microphones are typically multidirectional and pick up lots of ambient noise. This can make it difficult for other participants to hear you clearly, or it may sound as though you are far away.

    Neither is a good thing.

    Be sure to test the quality of your mic by recording yourself—not just on your computer or phone, but through your video conferencing platform of choice. The compression will affect your audio during the call, and you need to know if that will be a problem.

  1. Headphones

    A great alternative to built-in options is to use headphones with their own microphone. Any plug-in or wireless earbuds can often improve the sound quality both ways. As always, you’ll want to test this.


    The wired microphone often ends up mic side down on your shirts, creating an extremely muffled audio. DO NOT let this derail your meeting with other participants too kind to say anything. Instead, tape the wire to your shirt with the mic side out. 

    And if you’re thinking about using your $300 noise-canceling headphones, start pumping the breaks on that idea. Unless you’re interviewing for a DJ spot in Ibiza or in a noisy airport (do those exist anymore?), seek an alternative system.

    Golden Rule: If you wouldn’t wear it in a family photo don’t wear it in an online interview.

  1. Plug-In Microphone

    If you’ve tested your gear and it leaves something to be desired, or if you know that any job you take will be heavy on the online meetings, consider investing in both external plug-in speakers and a plug-in desktop microphone.

    For as little as $50 for each, you can up your audio quality tenfold.

    Imagine you’re the hiring manager and you just got off a meeting with a candidate who was great for the position, but a little hard to hear. Then, you jump on for another meeting with another candidate. This one has invested in a quality mic, there are zero technical issues, and they’re just as good a candidate as the one before. Not only that, but this job will be meeting-heavy and require a lot of interaction with clients from around the world where data may already be compromised.

    Which one would you be more likely to hire? Now imagine you’re the candidate with the better mic. The focus is going to be squarely on you and the fact that you didn’t settle for cheap hardware. Remember, for some, these are $10,000, $20,000, or even $100,000 conversations. Spend the $50-$200 for a quality microphone and you’ll never go back. Especially if you’re on meetings all day.

    You can also use KRISP, a software that eliminates all outside noise except for your voice. I can personally vouch that it works incredibly well. There are both desktop and phone versions. Best of all, you can try it out for free.

    Here’s my setup:

Cool home desk set up
  Home Office Set up Ideas for video interviews, work from home, and meetings.

Manage Distractions

Your video interview is going great. You’re making solid connections with the person on the other end. Everyone is in sync.

Then, all of sudden: bark, bark, bark. Or, “Mommy, daddy, I’m hungry!”. Your neighbor fires up his leaf blower right outside your window. Your phone pings and buzzes with notifications.

Momentum lost. Game blown.

Ha. Sorry……where was I???

This is not an exaggeration. It can take minutes, not seconds, to get back in the flow as your brain attempts to get you back on track and some, well…they never do.

So, here are the 5 rules for managing distractions:

  1. Turn off all notifications on your desktop from the main system, but check software, such as Slack, that may require you to turn off notifications within the app.
  2. Close all unnecessary windows and software on your computer.
  3. Put your phone on Do Not Disturb.
  4. Feed your kids, walk your dogs, and get an extra set of hands to look after them before your meeting.
  5. If you don’t have help and expect some interruptions, it’s not the end of the world. Simply let the interviewer or interviewee know your situation early on. Just say, “Before we begin, I need to let you know we have a new hound dog, 4 year old twins and we’re remodeling our kitchen. I’m sorry if this interrupts us and wanted to give you a heads up.”

Something like this can go a long way to setting expectations and acting professionally.

Loud noises, kids, neighbors, and pets aren’t the only things that can be distracting during a video interview. Watching a candidate read their answers or stare down at their desk as they scribble notes from the meeting can also get in the way of having the best meeting possible. 

If you type notes during meetings, let people know in advance. I usually say, “I’ll be typing up a lot of notes from our meeting today. Just letting you know so you don’t think I’m writing emails.”

Personally, I love it when candidates take notes during meetings. In fact, I get pretty worried when they don’t.

Body Language

Lights, Camera, ACTION!

I’m a huge fan of the study of body language, micro facial expressions, and being able to articulate what we most often interpret as feelings. This includes signs of deception, self-soothing, impulse-control cues, and more. I’ll save most of that all of that for a different article.

Instead, here are 6 common behavioral pitfalls that can sour even the best online video interviews.


  1. Spinning or Rocking in Your Chair. 

    This is self-soothing behavior, and most people who do this aren’t even aware of it. So start paying attention to yourself during calls. If you spin your chair back and forth or rock, and it’s an old habit, change your chair to a wheelless four-on-the-floor model.

  1. Clicking Your Pen

    Don’t. Just…don’t. Switch to a click-less pen if you have to. I used to keep some basic Bics in my office and force pen trades with employees who were frequent clicking offenders. Over time, it worked.

  1. Eating Food or Chewing Gum

    No one cares if it’s your lunch break. If you can’t control your need to feed during an important interview, people will assume the meeting isn’t important to you.

  1. Reading Your Notes Verbatim and in an Obvious Way


    You’re not giving a statement to the press like a politician—you’re having a conversation. It’s okay to have notes that help you during the meeting, but don’t squint at your second monitor and read the company’s description of itself to someone who works there or read from your resumé.

  1. Not Smiling

    I can’t tell you how many people I’ve talked to that were loath to return a grin until they warmed up a bit. People can even hear if you’re smiling without seeing it and people like smiles. It relaxes the atmosphere and lubricates communications between strangers. You don’t have to be ridiculous—just don’t forget to smile when you meet someone for the first time and ask how they’re doing, sincerely. It will also put you in a good mood. Facts!

  1. Talking for Too Long

    Superbowl ads stay under 60 seconds. When answering questions on a video call, so should you. Take a breath and see if the interviewer already picked up what you were putting down so the conversation can keep going. Serial offenders think they get good at interviews because they’ve had so many. Often, they’ve had so many interviews because they talked their way out of so many jobs by talking to long. Get in, answer, give an example, check for understanding and get out.

One-Way Video Interviews

One-way video interviews are when a candidate responds to prewritten questions using recorded video of themselves. There are a number of platforms in use such as HireVue pick. I use Spark Hire for its features and affordability.

Some candidates flat out refuse to participate in these types of screenings. They’ve cited it’s too impersonal. I think it’s a mistake to dismiss them or assume it is the deciding factor in a job offer.

It’s not.

One-way videos are an easy way to not only protect candidate and hiring managers time, but they usually allow a candidate to showcase the best of themselves. First of all, you can perform the video meeting anywhere and at any time convenient for you. No scheduling conflicts or unnecessary delays to getting through to the next stage of video interviewing.

Also, many of these platforms allow candidates to re-record their responses several times. That’s an opportunity you will never have in a live video interview. Additionally, by accepting the video interview, you immediately demonstrate your keen interest in the role. It may not be comfortable if you’ve never done it before, but this type of video interview is not going away. 

It’s wise to be on the cutting edge and getting experience with them before some of your competition.

The reality is, people forget people. When a manager is interviewing 6+ candidates per day for weeks on end filling multiple roles, having a recording allows them to refresh their memory, and even compare candidate responses side by side instead of having to rely on their notes or their imperfect memory. This is one way to not be forgotten.

DO NOT FORGET TO SMILE and DO NOT FORGET TO SHOW INTEREST, PASSION, and GRATITUDE on the recording. A little rehearsal and practice will improve your jitters once it’s showtime.

What’s Next

Hopefully, you’ve recognized that it’s not difficult to improve your video interviews and meetings. The problem is it’s too easy to get it wrong and potentially derail some of the most important conversations you’ll have all year—or even in your entire lifetime.

Following the above recommendations will help you look polished, professional, and tech-savvy. More importantly, your conversations will flow more naturally and allow you to come as close to a real face-to-face meeting as possible.

It will also help any friends and family you stay in touch with feel more like they’re in the room with you, and that’s always a good thing.

If you made it through the entire article about how to improve your video interviewing, congratulations! But don’t stop just yet. While it’s still fresh in your mind, do an audit of your equipment including audio tests and some screen captures of yourself to quickly determine how you can make a dramatic impact in no time at all.

For more information about how to hire or get hired like your career depends on it, subscribe to JoshForce or sign up for new article notifications.

I Lost My Job! PART TWO

I Lost My Job! What am I going to do? Steps 4, 5 and 6

If you’ve recently lost your job, spent time grieving and taken care of your immediate mental and physical needs Video PART 1, then it’s time to get back to work. Arming yourself with a compelling, easy to read resume and inviting LinkedIn profile will be covered, but we’ll start with the most important step, how to obtain the information you’ll need for both. 

I strongly recommend clicking the video above for a more detailed and entertaining lesson on how to ready yourself for the Salesforce Job market.

STEP 4 – Understand Your Successes and Shortcomings

Most resumes look like a calendar and a bunch of job descriptions had a baby. Not good! Compelling Salesforce resumes and LinkedIn Profiles are accomplishment focused, meaning they state how ones work affected the overall business. They are rife with results and outcomes, are easy to read and highlight your specific successes and characteristics.

There are three ways to understand your successes and shortcomings. Here they are in order of credibility.

 – Guess. This is a last resort when all resources and research has failed. Not recommended, but it’s better than wheeling out your dusty old document.

– Review past performance reviews and management coaching sessions, including quarterly, or annual 360 reviews. These can be a great source of information for adjectives that convey your work style, reliability, diligence, efficiency, technical competency and so on. 

– Contact your more recent managers and team leads. The absolute best and most credible way to obtain information on what your real value was to the company and a deeper understanding of what you need to work on. Imagine you’re in an interview and you’re asked “What will your references say about you?”. When you pipe up and share “My boss and I just connected last week. I’d reached out so I could understand how I should be applying myself while off of work to become an even more valuable employee. They shared I sometimes stick to a problem before asking for help a little longer than I should. They also said I was one of most reliable and conscientious Salesforce developers they’d ever worked with and I’d be their first call if they need to build a team again.” 
Powerful stuff….if it’s true!

Be sure to press them for honest information that you can really use. Managers who simply provide lip service or tell you what they think you want to hear are useless. Hold them accountable to the truth so you can learn, grow and validate your best qualities.

Step 5 – Update your Salesforce Resume

Most people have average resumes. Get yours into A shape by starting with the tips covered in the video.

Step 6 – Update your LinkedIn Profile  

Watch the video to learn how a few basic tweaks to your profile can help you in the job hunt

How To Keep Your Salesforce Job – Who Makes The Firing Decisions?

Tips to protect your salesforce job.

Tips that will help you keep your salesforce job

The pandemic has severely damaged the world economy and job security has been thrown out the window

As a Salesforce recruiter, my advice to those with a job they like (or love) is to hang on to the job for as long as possible. Obviously, in the economic downturn, this is easier said than done, but I have a few tips that can help you keep the job you have, reduce your risk of being laid off and ensure stability.

Here is my advice

There are three sections to surviving the current economy.

1. Save money:

The first and foremost thing to do is to be prepared for the loss of the job. No matter how valuable you believe you are, there is always a chance your employer might let you go. So, save as much cash as possible so you are prepared if that happens.

I understand that not everyone has the luxury of saving money, but try to find ways to cut down on costs. Many are researching mortgage refinance, selling cars with high payments for an affordable vehicle you can own outright and mowing your own lawn are good places to start.

2. Tips on keeping the job

The second step when facing a recession for Salesforce professionals is to do everything you can to secure the job you have.

Always keep in touch with the senior leadership. Comment on their LinkedIn posts, wish them a happy birthday, and make sure they know who you are and what you do in the company.

The more people that talk about you positively, the chances of retaining your job increase significantly.

Working hard and putting out great work is always a plus for your reputation in any economy. However, exceptional performance might not be enough. Your work needs to be in the limelight to let the higher-ups know you are crucial to the organizations success.

Often, the person deciding who gets to keep their job is someone you don’t even report to. It can be your boss’s boss or someone even higher up the ladder. It is therefore essential to have a good reputation with all levels in your company, especially upper management.

3. Be prepared to switch jobs.

Lastly, be prepared to look for a job in case you lose your job. Dial in your LinkedIn profile and resume (See this video for how)  and keep your eyes open for new job opportunities.

I also have a video on my YouTube channel on the topic of how to keep your salesforce job. Click the link for more tips and suggestions on how to protect your career during the Covid crisis.


If you’re already working, don’t start looking for a new job until you’ve invested in your finances, internal network, resume and LinkedIn profile.

I Lost My Job – 6 Things To Do Before You Start The Job Hunt

Things to do when you lost your job
If you’ve recently lost your job, this article is for you.
Note to reader: As The Salesforce Recruiter, I’ve created an ongoing series to address immediate needs and concerns of those affected by the Covid pandemic within the Salesforce eco system. I recommend watching the videos and subscribing to the channel to stay up to date on new information. This is Part 1 and will cover steps 1, 2 and 3.

I’ve Lost My Job! What am I going to do? 

Whether you’re rolling with the punches, have a strong back up plan or are even grateful to leave your current company, job loss is stressful and ranks high on traumatic events. For some, it’s as painful as the death of a friend. Knowing you’re not alone and that the country is doing its best to unite may not be enough and it certainly doesn’t pay the bills. This article won’t pay your bills either. Only you can do that, so let’s focus first on three things that are within your control.

1. Give Yourself Permission to Grieve

It’s not just ok to mourn, complain, lean on your loved ones and friends, lament, be angry, feel vulnerable, feel afraid, nervous, worried and commonly, devastated. It’s absolutely normal.

If you are the type to take action quickly, do so with caution. Without processing the hurt, fear and anger, unless you’re a skilled actor, it will show to future employers. This stuff is so deep, it’s incredibly hard to mask. You’ll do yourself and those that depend on you more favors by acknowledging you will need some time. Generally at least a couple days to a week. Unless you have a big stash, don’t wait longer than that.

If your spouse is wondering why the next day you aren’t filling out job applications, show them this article. DO NOT INTERVIEW WITHOUT PROCESSING YOUR PAIN.

Misery loves company. Don’t be misery’s friend. Grieve and then stop. It’s ok to talk about things like your feelings and the impact to you and those you care for, but overly negative dialogue that’s repeated creates brain pathways that, like ruts in the road, keep you on track for the wrong destination. It doesn’t take a high Emotional Quotient to smell bitterness. That is one stanky perfume and creates even greater social distancing from the people who matter to you most.

2. Reframe Your Experience

Even though people lose jobs regardless of a pandemic, future employers will understand with great clarity the primary reason behind your recent availability. If we fall at the foot of victimhood we’ll be flatting the curve on our career, so don’t do that. Deeply understanding why you lost your Salesforce job is imperative and it’s all in how it’s framed.

This is my recommended “framing” for your difficult experience.

“I lost my job to save a life. The life of someone who matters. I lost my job to save a company. A company that may live to hire me again. I’m not a victim because I am alive. I am not a casualty because I can still work. I’ve lost my job, but not my career.” 

3. Manage Emotions By Taking Care of Your Body

How much we sleep, the kind of food we eat and how much exercise we get directly impacts our endocrine system.The endocrine system is the collection of glands that produce hormones that regulate metabolism, growth and development, tissue function, sexual function, reproduction, sleep, and mood. Treat your body like a punching bag and your mood is likely to follow suit.

Don’t make ice cream, Doritos and booze part of your daily routine.  Don’t quit exercise if you already do it. If you don’t, then start. Don’t stay up til 2 a.m., sleep until 11, or forego the sun. Protect your future and your family and your income by looking after your body, and your mood immediately.

Take care of yourself. Seriously!

While steps 1, 2 and 3 are all about self care. Steps 4, 5 and 6 are about arming ourselves with compelling job hunting assets like a pro resume, engaging LinkedIn profile and how to get the information for both that matters most.


Entry Level – Salesforce Career Advice

Top Salesforce Recruiters

I’m often asked by entry-level candidates “How can I gain real-world Salesforce experience?”. Whether you’ve just started your Trailhead or just completed your first certification, check out this list of steps, tips, and resources to help you achieve your goal of employment within the Salesforce ecosystem.

1. Get in the playground and play. 

Practice daily! You must improve your skill and efficiency. Remember the 10,000-hour rule. It takes 10,000 hours to become an expert. Start getting yours in now.

2. Don’t stop learning.

I recently placed a Junior Salesforce Administrator who had zero real org experience, but she did have 150 badges. It’s the drive to learn that impressed the employer, along with the extra skill. Badges help. 

3. Build your LinkedIn profile. 

If you don’t absolutely love your profile, chances are others won’t either. 
For help getting started, check out this article: 31 Best LinkedIn Profile Tips for Job Seekers

4. Build your LinkedIn connections. 

Identify employers in your area who use Salesforce (look at job postings). Invite appropriate managers from those firms to join your network. Stay in touch, but don’t annoy them with too many communications or asking for a job. Instead, let them know you’re excited about your new career and offer to help.

5. Read this great article from a Salesforce insider:

Get Salesforce Experience 

6. Make sure you can touch type.

Efficiency will accelerate your opportunities and compensation. This is often overlooked for those transitioning into technology. If you can’t touch type as fast as you can talk, there are free lessons on No looking! 

7. Answer these questions.

  • What are you committed to accomplishing in the next 90 days? 
  • How much time per week are you committed to investing?
  • What user groups and online communities will you join?
  • Will you invest in your resume and LI profile?
  • How many badges or certifications will you complete?
  • How many jobs will you apply to?
  • How many connections are you committed to making?
  • What non-technical skills do you have that ensure you will be a terrific employee? (interdepartmental communications, customer support, an upbeat attitude, highly organized, etc.)

8. Make a plan.

Plot your activities in your calendar and execute.

Pro Tip: 

Studies show you are more likely to complete what you set out to do if you are accountable to others. Consider forming a group of 2-3 peers with weekly check-ins to keep the motivation and drive up.

Pro Tip: 

Studies also show you are more likely to complete a goal if you focus on and complete one goal at a time. Think of each goal as a ladder rung. Skipping rungs increases your chance of falling off the ladder.

You’ve made an exceptional and timely career decision. While it’s not often we are engaged for junior level placements, I hope someday we can be a help to you as you grow your career and expertise. Now, here’s a chance for you to help others…

What’s the best tip you know of? Share in the comments!

How to Work With Recruiters

Salesforce Recruiters

Working with a recruiter could be one of the best career decisions you’ve ever made. It can also be a serious waste of time and lead to disappointment and even resentment.

Choosing the right firm, the right recruiter and getting off on the right foot can be essential steps to landing you in a position that fulfills your ambitions. Follow these simple seven tips to get the most out of your recruiter relationships.

1. Choose firms (and recruiters) that specialize in what you do.

As obvious as it sounds, a little research will go a long way to helping you find the right position. If a firm or recruiter doesn’t understand the language of your profession, chances are they won’t have the skill to obtain the job orders from managers hiring people like you.

2. Work with a senior recruiter when possible.

It’s perfectly OK to ask a recruiter a few questions to determine their experience and ability level. Check them out on LinkedIn. Do they have good recommendations? Are they connected to your industry?

3. Most recruiters work for free until they make a placement and when they do, it’s the client who pays not you the candidate.

Remember this and treat them accordingly. If a recruiter doesn’t like you for whatever reason (thinks you’re rude or arrogant) it’s unlikely they’ll submit you for any jobs.

4. Staying in touch is YOUR job –

just don’t stay in touch too much. It’s essential for you to gently remind your recruiter of your existence. However, too many phone calls or emails and your recruiter is likely to run the other direction and begin avoiding you. Striking the balance is easy. Ask your recruiters how often they would like status updates. I recommend sending an email each week with your availability status, whether you have interviewed recently etc. Include in the email “REPLY NOT REQUIRED”. This keeps your recruiter informed without generating more work for them.

5. Take the advice.

If you’ve chosen your recruiter wisely and are working with someone with many years in the industry and he or she offers you advice TAKE IT. They know much more about resumes, interviews, and skills trends than most other people you’ll come in contact with.

6. Register with more than one firm.

More recruiters equals better odds of landing the job you want most.

7. Keep track of places you interviewed,

the managers you met with and share this info with your favorite recruiters. Many recruiters rely on leads from candidates to grow their job openings, which helps them place other people. This is the very best way you can repay a recruiter for the time they spend with you. Not only will it be appreciated, but it will keep you at the very top of their available candidates matrix as well.

Would you like to learn more?

Resumes and Golf Swings

Salesforce Recruiting

Resumes are like your golf swing. Everyone has an opinion and a suggestion that can make it better. The trouble is, if you take everyone’s advice you wind up with a document that is three pages too long, two pages too short, over descriptive without saying enough, in a format that’s perfect, but unreadable and says too much about your personality without saying enough about who you are. Too much advice cancels out all advice, much like sound waves muting other sounds.

When learning to golf I started out with affordable group lessons. $200 got me into a six-session group. Half the time I was the only one who showed up so I benefited from one-on-one lessons with a pro. The results were so profound I signed up for 10 more individual lessons and in a matter of a few months was able to shave off 30 strokes from my game. Some of the best advice I got from my pro Tony was to quit reading golf magazines for advice and to only take advice from one person. I paid a little attention to this and found an article on improving your drive distance. One part said to tee the ball high and the next section said to tee the ball low. RIDICULOUS! But that’s golf. It’s a game. Your career is not a game.

Promoting oneself to the world with a resume made up of tips and tricks found on Google, five recruiters opinions, and your friends and family’s advice is bound to be flawed. To begin with, most family and friends are not Pro’s and most recruiters have very little experience. Think of them as your buddy who shoots in the 80′s. He or she is still not a pro. At a company I once worked for, six out of seven recruiters had less than a year of experience. Would you hire a golf Pro with less than a year of experience? Why would you trust your CAREER to anyone’s opinion with so little experience?

If the resume gets you an invite to the tourney, you still have to play great to win the offer. This is where the mental game comes in. In The Golfers Mind: Play to Play Great, Dr. Bob Rotella emphasizes the importance of confidence and playing “loose” during matches. The tournament is not the time for trying out new ideas. That’s what the range is for. How confident will you be when the invite comes? How much practice have you had to prepare for your big moment? Where will you get your advice? How will you know how to choose?