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Book Review of: Outwitting the Job Market
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Review of Outwitting the Job Market by Chandra Prasad
|Reviewer: Mark Lamendola, author
of over 4500 articles in print or online. |
During the 1980s and 1990s, I read just about every job book published. Of all those books, What Color is Your Parachute? and Don't Send A Resume stand out in my memory. And now I can add a third.
When I first came across this book, I recognized Chandra Prasad's name because I had read her in the Wall Street Journal countless times.
This book was well-researched, and it helps the reader connect the dots. I've read books where the author admonishes the reader, "Make sure you research the company! Look them up in Value Line!" I've been on dozens of interviews and have found this advice completely worthless. You probably have, also. This made me think maybe I could write such drivel and sell a book.
Quite frankly, you won't impress an interviewer just because you can rattle off the names of the members of the Board of Directors or quote from the company's last annual report. If anything, you will just irritate this person--especially if you don't know other things that you should know.
Ms. Prasad took a different approach, telling us what kind of information to look for when researching a company. As I read this, I thought, "Yes! This is exactly what a job seeker needs to know!" And so it went throughout the book.
Ms. Prasad's practical advice takes you through
the entire job search process, starting with a personal inventory--a
step most people shortchange because they don't understand how to
do it. And they pay for that shortcut with longer job searches and
shorter stretches of employment. That consequence is true of each
step in the job search process, actually. Which is why the approach
of this book is so valuable to anybody who is in the job market. Most
people let the job market beat them, but this book shows you how to
beat the job market--just as its title implies. If you want to win
this particular battle of wits, you need to be well-armed
If you hold a job, you are likely to be looking for one soon. If you are looking for a job, you will likely be looking again. If you are spending your time massaging your resume, you will be looking for a while. If you take the time to read and apply this book, you will shorten your job search and lengthen your subsequent employment.
About these reviews
You may be wondering why the reviews here are any different from the hundreds of "reviews" posted online. Notice the quotation marks?
I've been reviewing books for sites like Amazon for many years now, and it dismays me that Amazon found it necessary to post a minimum word count for reviews. It further dismays me that it's only 20 words. If that's all you have to say about a book, why bother?
And why waste everyone else's time with such drivel? As a reader of such reviews, I feel like I am being told that I do not matter. The flippancy of people who write these terse "reviews" is insulting to the authors also, I would suspect.
This sound bite blathering taking the place of any actual communication is increasingly a problem in our mindless, blog-posting Webosphere. Sadly, Google rewards such pointlessness as "content" so we just get more if this inanity.
My reviews, contrary to current (non) standards, actually tell you about the book. I always got an "A" on a book review I did as a kid (that's how I remember it anyhow, and it's my story so I'm sticking to it). A book review contains certain elements and has a logical structure. It informs the reader about the book.
A book review may also tell the reader whether the reviewer liked it, but revealing a reviewer's personal taste is not necessary for an informative book review.
About your reviewer
About reading style
No, I do not "speed read" through these. That said, I do read at a fast rate. But, in contrast to speed reading, I read everything when I read a book for review.
Speed reading is a specialized type of reading that requires skipping text as you go. Using this technique, I've been able to consistently "max out" a speed reading machine at 2080 words per minute with 80% comprehension. This method is great if you are out to show how fast you can read. But I didn't use it in graduate school and I don't use it now. I think it takes the joy out of reading, and that pleasure is a big part of why I read.