As an employer, you want to make sure the person you hire is the best candidate applying for the position. You want to select the most perfect "fit" possible. Since this person will be representing your company, and will therefore be a direct reflection on you, you definitely want to hire someone who is much more than just a warm body with a pulse!

As a prospective employee, you naturally want to be offered the job for which you apply. Therefore, you want to be sure before applying that your work skills, experience and education will all be an asset to the company. Don't apply for just any job opening; apply where you truly believe you can make a contribution, and where you are fairly certain you could be happy working for many years.

A well-written resumé is an excellent tool for matching prospective employers and employees. That single piece of paper separates "the men from the boys," or the "women from the girls."

When an applicant has taken the time to write out his/her qualifications and job experiences and has sent them to the prospective employer, along with the application, ahead of time, they are telling their future boss that they are serious about working at his/her company. It makes the applicant stand out among the crowd.

Taking a few minutes to carefully review the resumé saves the employer time. Checking the references by telephone helps immediately weed out unsuitable candidates and eliminates the need to interview them before saying "no, thanks."

Once the applicant has come for an interview, there are questions that must be asked on both sides. Questions about hours, wages, medical benefits, sick leave, and opportunities for advancement are a given. But an effective interview is much more than that. This is the time to explore the employment expectations on both sides and discover the advantages as well as the "deal breakers" leading to effective job satisfaction for all concerned.

Jan Bono is a personal and professional life coach in Long Beach. Access her Web site at

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