The Worsening Situation
Sometimes circumstances can make the truly gifted feel incredibly small, even invisible. This is particularly true when a person is out of work, searching for a job that seems further and further away with each passing month. That, by itself, can be a crippling anxiety-generator, but the anxiety mounts when this talented individual is a single parent who looks at the uncertain future with fear and dread.
A coaching client, who I will call Karen, was a single mom who had been out of work for about eight or nine months when I finally met her in August, of this year. We conducted a rehearsal, and then in September we met again to do more work. I went over all of the techniques I wanted her to use to gain control of her emotional state and project a charisma that is magnetic and leads to job offers. She told me she was using several of them, but she was still failing in job interviews.
Our time together was over, but we kept in contact. One day she told me she was excited about an upcoming interview in late November, but I was not excited about her prospects. She sounded weak and uncertain, utterly lacking in confidence. She later told me that she was in a bad place at this stage of her job search. So I scheduled time to visit her on November 24th, the Tuesday before Thanksgiving, to try and prepare her for at least two opportunities.
Charisma Must Be Balanced
Karen naturally radiated warmth-charisma, but not the charisma that says with a sonorous tone, “I am strong and confident and capable of overcoming every challenge.” So, my goal was to balance her warmth-charisma with authority-charisma. When these two are balanced they act like a powerful pheromone that is irresistible to hiring authorities. We then went over a strategy to help make this so.
Her next interview came and it must have gone well because she made it to the next round.
Ah, the second round. She had reached it several times, but her competitors kept passing her by as they raced for the finish line. Making matters worse, this stage involved the CEO of the company. He was a tough interview, kind of like a poker player wearing sunglasses. He gave nothing away.
The End of Uncertainty
The interview ended and Karen had an uneasy feeling. She was uncertain about how she did. Her feeling of uncertainty ended today when she got her offer. The CEO told her new boss, the VP of Sales, that Karen impressed him. As the VP told Karen, “He almost never says anything like that.” But her offer was not a good offer; it was a great offer. It was twice what another company recently offered her, and it exceeded what she was making a year ago. And here is what makes it stronger: The hiring company knew she had now been out of work for a year, and they knew what she was making. They could easily have offered her a lot less.
Karen was stunned by the generosity of the offer, but as I told her over the phone, “Karen, you’ve developed charisma. You made them want you, yearn for you to be a part of their team, and we can see the appearance of charisma in the result you generated. The hiring company paid you more than they logically and rationally needed to. And that is because, as Blaise Pascal once wrote, “The heart has reasons that reason can’t understand.”
The Best Christmas Ever
Christmas is coming in 11 days, but I am celebrating it today. And it is the best Christmas ever. For I got a chance to help a kind and decent person, who was gifted but did not always feel that way, to climb from her deep, dark sinkhole and arrive at a place where she and her son will be able to chart a new course.
Merry Christmas Karen, and thank you for making my Christmas the best ever.