Friday, November 6, 2015

There is no such thing as too much research... said no one ever

One of the worst things that could happen in an interview is not knowing anything about the position you are applying for, the company you’re interviewing with and not conducting any research beforehand. Success in a job interview starts with a solid foundation of knowledge on the job-seeker's part.

First, you should understand the employer’s values, motives, culture and initiatives. A great place to find this information would be the company’s website. Read the details and make sure you are able to reference during the interview.

Next, this may seem like a no-brainer, but you would be surprised. It is important to know the requirements of the job. What kind of role you will play? What is required of you? What are the basic skills you should have to make you successful for the position. I would suggest utilizing websites like, company websites and even calling employees that work for the company and asking them about it.  There are even websites that you can see reviews and comparable tools to see how companies measure against each other in terms of requirements and benefits.

Lastly, doing research on the background of the person (or people) interviewing you can help you connect to them. Websites like Linkedin and Facebook make it super easy to gather this kind of information and employers will find it to be impressive, not creepy. The more research you conduct, the more you'll understand the employer, and the better you'll be able to answer interview questions.

If you have any research questions, contact me at

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

The Invaluable Question of "Why?"

In the process of preparing for an interview there are many key steps to complete: proofread resume, professional business attire and punctuality to name a few. However, often times while speaking with candidates when asked the pertinent and seemingly simplistic question of “What made you decide you want to work for us?” Or, “Why did you choose to apply?” Often the response is generic, unfounded, or none at all.

When applying for a position it is important to see it as the first step in building a relationship with a potential employer. In general when we formulate a relationship it should not be approached in a haphazard, random way. There should be a foundation of facts behind the decision connecting the employer with the candidate. In order to preserve time and to always put your best foot forward, consider the following questions:

·         What do I like about this company?
·         What is their history?
·         What are the benefits of working here?
·         What skills do I have that match the qualifications for the position I’m applying for?
·         Can I see myself having a career with this company?
·         Does this company offer me opportunity to grow?

In the interview process the company that you’re applying for wants to be a great match for you as you do for them. When a candidate researches the company they are applying for and gives thought as to why they want to be there, this is where progress is made right from the start. Whether an in-person interview or over the phone, knowledge truly is power. 

Want to practice your interviewing skills? Email 

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Are you one to Cross your I's and Dot your T's?

A job application form is the screening tool many employers use to decide who they will interview. How you fill out the form can influence whether or not you eventually get hired, or at the least, even be considered for an interview. When starting the process make certain of these following tips:

Resume should only be one page long
·         Use a template online, if you’re unable to format it yourself

Always remember to reduce clutter
·         Note: Most recruiters spend less than 1 minute viewing your resume, you want it to be bold and concise.

Remember to always use proper Capitalization 
·         First and Last Name (Your Name or any References/Supervisors)
·         Addresses
·         Past Employers

Spelling and Grammar
·         Always use spell check, in fact make spell check your best friend
·         Have a 2nd or 3rd pair of eyes look over your Resume and/or Application before submitting.

Always put your best foot forward, by screening your material and making sure you are in fact dotting your I’s and crossing your T’s!  

Interested in filling out an application with Mattress Firm? Feel free to contact me at 

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

The Importance of Retention

In the acquiring talent world, there is a more dominant word that mirrors with recruiting. This word may be looked at as the other half of the see-saw for a recruiter’s work; a constant battle of up and down. The word is known as retention. (Dun dun dun…) 

Retention is a hot topic among our company and among many others as well. It seems to be a constant theme among most of our meetings, and in our daily conversations with our peers. Jim Stroud heartily jests about retention in his article “Retention is the new recruiting.” Stroud even opens the article up with a little song, “Cheaper to Keep Her,” by Johnnie Taylor. He talks about a recent Randstad survey of 11,000 workers on why they left their last job. And more importantly not only why these workers left, but what would make them stay. Ever thought what would make you stay in your current role at your company? Most workers said “good riddance” to their previous employer, because there was a lack of career growth, low compensation and poor leadership.According to the 11,000 surveyed a better work/life balance, competitive salary, flexibility, and corporate financial health are the top items that would entice them stay. 

In the article, while Stroud addresses possible solutions to the HR executives to consider, it is also important for the current job seekers out there to pay mindfulness to the key points made by Stroud. Ask yourself if there is career growth at this company? How is the compensation and leadership? And don’t forget to inquire about the work/life balance? 

Retention is just as important as recruiting. It is a consistent tug-of-war between the two, but you cannot have one without the other. Therefore, do your homework on the company you are inquiring about, and ask questions that are important to you in a new employer. Remember you are interviewing them as much as they are interviewing you!
 Happy Job Hunting!

Have any questions? Feel free to email 

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Color my World

I’m a new homeowner with decorating on my mind. I have grown a complete obsession with HGTV. I watch several of the shows, have a subscription to the magazine and found one thing in common…everyone’s overall goal is to decorate their home with things that make them happy. One challenge someone might face is picking a paint color as there is what seems to be over a billion colors to choose from.

The same can go for your work space. It should be a reflection of things that inspire, motivate and make you happy. I really enjoyed the article below from The Muse that discusses how colors in the office can have a direct relation to workers mood and productivity. Below is a brief breakdown of color ideas for your office space:

Blue – stable and calming color that helps workers focus on the task at hand
Green – good color for people who work long hours
Yellow – optimistic color and can help stimulate activity
Red – increase the heart rate, blood flow and also invokes emotion and passion

Keep these in mind for your new work space or if you’re simply looking to refresh.  Happy decorating!

Want to share some images of your office? Email me at

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Voicemail Woes

What happens if your voice doesn’t have any mail? Or your mail doesn’t have a voice?

You have decided to take a HUGE chance and leave your current job or maybe you recently graduated college. You are excited and ready to take on the world, nothing can stop you! But, it can be scary and difficult looking for a job. There are a million things going through your head that you must make sure you have completed. Questions and concerns rush through your mind… am I qualified for this position? I need to update my resume. What jobs do I list on my resume? How long will it take me to get hired? Is this the best move for me? Is this job going to pay me enough?

There are so many things you have to think about and worry about, that you could be forgetting to do the most important thing of them all; paying attention to the smallest of details. It can get frustrating when a recruiter comes across a resume or application and they love what they see; this person is qualified, educated, and has a lot of experience. This person is exactly who we are looking for! I am going to give them a call and set up a phone or even a face to face interview.

We pick up the phone and as the phone is ringing over and over, we start to plan the type of voicemail we are going to leave. Then we hear those words, which no recruiter wants to hear. “I’m sorry, but the number you are trying to reach has a voicemail box that is not set up, good bye.” But sometimes someone does pick up, only to tell us “I’m sorry you have the wrong number.”

Searching for a new career is hard enough, there are a lot of things that you need to make sure are completed as you are applying for jobs.  But don’t let the smallest details slip your busy mind.

Before you send in that resume, or fill out the job application, remember to keep these things in mind:
  • Make sure you have the correct contact number on your resume AND application. 
  • Make sure your voicemail is set up and empty of messages.
  • Make sure your voicemail is professional and simple. No need to have a 5 minute voicemail message with music blaring in the background.

It would be silly for you to miss out on a great job opportunity over something that is 100% in your control. 

For other great voicemail tips, please reach out to me at

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Will You Checkmate Your Career?

In the early 19th century the laws of chess were created to ensure all players are playing equally. Wouldn’t it be great if there were laws for our career? I imagine most of us would love to have a career check list to ensure we were doing everything required to move up to our next position. But just as the game of chess is dependent on the mindset and decisions of the player, you are the motivator of your career. Preparing, playing and finishing a game of chess may also resemble your aspirations for a strong career.

To start the game, you must set up the board. A great start to setting up your career is to define your career goals. Where do you want to be in 12 months, 2 years, 5 years and 10 years down the road? Write them down, as a “goal not written down is just a wish” – unknown.

There are several types of moves while playing chess- basic movements, capturing and castling to name a few. How many moves have you made in your career? Are you being strategic? Basic moves are great; they provide you the foundation you need to gain success and credibility. Are you capturing key lessons from those around you? In castling the King and the Rook move together, are you working with a team or mentor to help you move through your career?

Formal games of chess players are required to record their moves. Research shows we learn more from reflecting on our experiences, even more than the actual experience. How much time do you carve out of your day, week or even month to record your moves or reflect on what you have learned?

A game of chess can end in a variety of ways: the three main being resignation, a draw or checkmate. How will your career end? Will you resign from your advancement? Will you end up in a draw, maybe a lull in your career because of a lack of clear goals or a mentorship? Or will you continue to advance and checkmate into your next journey?

Your career can be your personal game of chess. Write down your goals, make strategic moves, and reflecting on your experiences may lead you to a checkmate! 

For some great chess moves, please email me at 

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Resume 101

A couple of weeks ago I ran across an article published by Business Insider that I could not agree more with in regard to information that you need to immediately remove from your resume. It is important to remember that your resume lands you the interview, not the actual job. If you get to a formal interview, that is the time to dive deeper into your experience – no need for your resume to look like a novel (the recruiter and hiring manager will appreciate that immensely).

Remove the following from your resume:
  •  Middle and high school Information
    • This becomes even more unnecessary if you have collegiate experience
  • Average or poor GPA
  • Passive language
    • "Familiar with"; "Learned how to"
  • A series of short-lived jobs
  • Photos
  • Objective statement
    • They can work against you and are very difficult to write
  • Really obvious skills
    • Example: Microsoft Word
  • Any information that can cause discrimination
    • Age, religion, political affiliation
  • Too personal of information
    • Social security number, marital status
  • More pages
    • Keep it to one page, trust me, that's all you need

Take it from me, if you omit the above information you will be left with a relevant and impactful resume. 

Happy job seeking!

To read the Business Insider article in its entirety, click on the link below.

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Looking to Start a Professional Library?

We recently sat down with Steve Stagner, CEO of MFRM Family of Brands, and asked which of his favorite books he would recommend to someone looking to start a collection aimed at business and professional development. 

10. The Great Game of Business- Jack Stack

If you have any great books to recommend, feel free to email me at 

Thursday, August 27, 2015

America's got Talent- Do you?

I have recently started watching a new show on NBC, America’s Got Talent. My husband and I are not avid TV watchers, much less a diehard fan of any show, but for some reason AGT has slowly made its way into our lives every Monday evening.  One of things that we love about AGT is the uniqueness of each individual performing their art, talent, illusion or stunt.  There are people from all over the nation and even the world that compete for a chance to win a headline show in Las Vegas and a million dollars! Once they perform, the four judges then decide if the act stood out enough to make it through to the live show.

This got me thinking about all the growth MFRM Family of Brands is currently experiencing and the upcoming interviews, or “auditions”, our candidates will go through to find out if they have what it takes to join the MFRM family and the career they are seeking to land.

So, how can you make sure your “audition” stands out so you can make the cut? Check out this article from on “How to Answer the ‘Tell Me About Yourself’ interview question.” This article can help you answer this dreaded interview question but also help to ensure that you can speak about yourself and show that you have what it takes to stand apart from the rest, just like the artists on America’s Got Talent!

For additional advice on how to answer this question or career opportunities with MFRM FOB, contact me at

Thursday, August 20, 2015

Dress for Success

All too often I hear of great candidates whose professional dress overshadowed their true potential. 

We communicate through many channels; verbal communication, body language, and appearance. Your interview attire says everything that you are not. Your appearance has the power to make or break your first impression. Attire makes a strong visual statement about how you see yourself. Think of the brand that you are projecting to your future employer. In this competitive job market, are you a brand employers want? Your individual successes and failures will contribute to that of the organization that you are applying for. 

When dressing for success think how your potential employer will receive and process your image. Is it an image that is synonymous with your career goals? When your appearance delivers what the employer is searching for, you've made a great first impression. You've just overcome the first obstacle and can move on to impress them with your experience and knowledge. When employers don't judge the cover, they appreciate the 3rd and 4th chapter of getting to know YOU!

Good luck and dress for success!

For tips on interview attire, please email 

Monday, August 10, 2015

Book Lover's Day

Yesterday happened to mark one of my favorite days of the year, Book Lover's Day. I could bore you all with a list of my favorite books (Happy Potter 1-7) but thought it may be much more exciting to share Karrie Forbes' list. Karrie Forbes is MFRM's CBO and has been with MFRM Family of Brand since 1997. 

What are some of the books on your list? Share with me at 

Monday, July 27, 2015

Looking to join a great team?

Hey Atlanta! Are you or anyone you know looking for a new opportunity? Come meet some awesome members of the Mattress Firm Warehouse Team at an open house on July 28th!
See you there!

Monday, July 20, 2015

Tips to Land Your Dream Job

Your alarm went off on time, you ate a great breakfast, and all the lights were green on the way to your interview location. This is it! The moment you’ve been waiting for with the company of your dreams. Follow these tips from to ensure that you not only land the job, but leave a lasting positive impression.

Practice Good Nonverbal Communication
Demonstrate confidence by standing straight, making eye contact and connecting with a firm handshake. This impression can be a great beginning to your interview.

Dress for the Job or Company
It is important to know what to wear to an interview and to be well-groomed. Whether you wear a suit or something less formal depends on the company culture and the position you are seeking.  

Good communication skills include listening and letting the person know you heard what was said. Observe your interviewer, and match that style and pace.

Don't Talk Too Much
Telling the interviewer more than he needs to know could be a fatal mistake, sometimes talking yourself right out of the job. Prepare for the interview by reading through the job posting, matching your skills with the position's requirements and relating only that information.

Don't Be Too Familiar
Your level of familiarity should mimic the interviewer's demeanor. It is important to bring energy and enthusiasm to the interview and to ask questions, but do not overstep your place as a candidate looking for a job.

Use Appropriate Language
It's a given that you should use professional language during the interview. Be aware of any inappropriate slang words or references to age, race, religion, politics or sexual orientation etc.

Don't Be Cocky
Attitude plays a key role in your interview success. There is a fine balance between confidence, professionalism and modesty. Overconfidence is as bad, if not worse, as being too reserved.
Take Care to Answer the Questions
Behavioral interview questions are designed to elicit a sample of your past behavior. If you fail to relate a specific example, you not only don't answer the question, but you also miss an opportunity to prove your ability and talk about your skills.

Ask Questions
Part of knowing how to interview is being ready to ask questions that demonstrate an interest in what goes on in the company. Asking questions also gives you the opportunity to find out if this is the right place for you. The best questions come from listening to what you're asked during the interview and asking for additional information.

Don't Appear Desperate
When you interview with the "please, please hire me" approach; you appear desperate and less confident. Reflect the three Cs during the interview: cool, calm and confidence.

You know you can do the job; make sure the interviewer believes you can too by putting these tips into practice. 

Follow this link to read the article in full detail:

Have some tips of your own? Feel free to email me at

Friday, July 17, 2015

Don't Burn a Bridge, Build it!

You’ve been in the job search for a while now. All of a sudden, you are landing interviews back to back. Then one day, you are surrounded with offers. Oh my! You need to make a decision, but you know that a few companies will be on the losing end of the stick. After careful deliberation, you have made your decision. But should you let the “losing” employers know? Wouldn’t it be easier to just not sign the offer or not pick up the phone when they call?

Your story may not play out this exact way, but you may have been in a situation where you had to make a decision between employers. What is the best way to handle that? The idea is that you want to build bridges and not burn them. You never know, you may find that the job that you accepted wasn’t actually a fit. You may want to later apply for another position with the company that you originally turned down. You may cross paths with the “losing” recruiter…it is a small world after all.

So how can you politely decline an employer and build that bridge? All it takes is a simple call. 

  1. Call the employer personally.  Let them know that you are turning down the offer and why.
  2. Let the employer know in a timely fashion. That way, the employer can explore a different candidate.
  3. Be polite and professional.  Recruiter’s document each encounter with candidates. If you ever apply again, they will be able to reference the past conversations.
  4. Offer assistance. If you know someone that is in the career search and would meet the employer’s requirements, refer them to the employer. This could help the employer fill the position since you are now pursuing something different, and you are paying it forward. 

 I know it’s easier said than done, but I promise that you will feel better letting the employer know the direction that you are taking.  Who knows what paths you may take in the future, as you may need to travel on the bridge that you once thought of burning.

If you are looking to build a bridge with Mattress Firm, Inc., please email me at  

Monday, June 29, 2015

Interviewing Curveball

With baseball season in full swing and the hometown team currently sitting #1 in the American League West (Go Astros!), I got to thinking – in baseball, you have a fastball, the slider, a changeup… and then there’s the always tricky curveball. But what happens when you are thrown a curveball in everyday life? Better yet, what happens when you have a curveball thrown at you during an interview? recently published the “Top 10 Oddball Interview Questions of 2015.” How would you answer “Who would win in a fight between Spiderman and Batman”? Or “Describe the color yellow to someone who is blind”.  Companies are starting to become more adventurous and creative when it comes to interviewing, recruiting and retaining top-tier candidates. Are you someone who can think on their toes?

While we try our hardest to prepare for an interview by researching the company, reading reviews and asking friends and family if they have any suggestions, also remember to keep an eye out for a curveball that can be thrown your way.

For the full list, please check out:

Have you been on the receiving end of an oddball question? Share with with us at

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Mattress Firm Open House