SU Alumni Association

SHIP Alumni Career Newsletter

November/December 2013 Edition

November 25, 2013
In This Issue
Employer Perspective: Network Your Way to the Top
Highlighted Job Postings
Ship Career Connection
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Greetings!

Welcome to the November/December edition of the Alumni Career Newsletter!
Employer Perspective

Network Your Way to the Top.  By Judy Cuffaro Arnold '85
 
 

I remember attending an American Marketing Association meeting on campus as an undergrad at Ship. I was drawn to the buzz in the room and inspired by impressive industry leaders who shared real-world case studies about nationally-known, name brands. I caught the bug for that continual stream of knowledge and connections to other marketing professionals. And since then, I have never stopped.

   

During the course of my 25-year career, I have been involved in professional organizations throughout Pennsylvania including groups like the International Association of Business Communicators (IABC), the Direct Marketing Association of Washington (DMAW), Women in Advertising & Marketing (W&AM), the Philadelphia Direct Marketing Association (PDMA) and the Philadelphia American Marketing Association (PAMA). I have served on committees and the board of directors for many of these organizations over the years and have recently also joined a marketing task force for a newly formed nonprofit.  My active involvement in these groups have provided support when I needed it, life-long friendships, and led to opportunities that have been critical to my success.

 

Professional associations provide invaluable networking and educational opportunities to build your expertise and advance your career. Through these organizations' frequent in-person and online educational and social events and venues, you can meet peers and executives in your profession, identify expert resources, and continue to increase your knowledge by accessing industry news, articles, case studies, statistics and reports. Taking it a step further, volunteering to help these groups gives you valuable experience working as part of a team or using your leadership skills to chair a committee. When you work with someone as a volunteer, you quickly learn about their work ethic, knowledge and skills. Several times during my career, individuals I have met through professional associations have reached out and referred me to new job opportunities. Similarly, I have been impressed by others I have worked with on committees and boards and hired them on my team or recommended them to others.

 

Read on for more on networking your way to the top. 

Highlighted Job Postings

These companies are looking to hire SHIP alumni. You can find out more about these opportunities as well as other opportunities on Ship Career Connection. If you are a Ship alumni and looking to hire other Ship alums or students please contact us to highlight your job and post it on Ship Career Connection.  

 

SU Alumni Association
 

High end New York City fashion company seeks entry level business professional

 

Small wholesale company that is looking to open 2-4 retail locations in the next year along with integrating three other brands that were purchased by our parent company. We are looking for someone who is organized and professional. This person must be able to work in a fast paced environment and willing to pitch in wherever needed since the US division currently consists of  5 people. Tasks include but not limited to: Sales reports for our designated selling assistants at Saks Fifth Avenue, Neiman Marcus, and our future retail stores; Working with Germany on electronic data transfers of orders; Inventory. Everything from being able to work with our customers on what we have in stock, to working with stylist. This person must also ensure the collection is properly priced and tracked as pieces are sold or consigned. For photo shoots making sure we have all the proper styles here in the US; Trunks Shows. A contract must be signed each season by the customer. After the show our employees must be checked to make sure they stay within our budget and the contract guidelines. Then customer must be billed for their portion of the show; Order confirmations for all orders placed before the clothing is manufactured by Germany; During market, working with the sales team and the customers to get orders placed; Work with president and finance manager on new retail location projects; Go to various stores for special events to represent the company and our products.  This could include a local trunk show or fashion show; May be asked to help at trade shows as we launch our 3 new brands in the US; Help with sample sales that occur 3-4 times a year; Work with Germany on the shipping  to ensure our product clears customs with limited problems and makes it to our customers before cancel dates; Back up for various accounting functions, including various reports and collections. If you are looking to be involved with all aspects of a business and want to see how a company can grow quickly, this is an opportunity for you. Please send all resumes to Angelab@renalangeusa.com

 

Senior Staff, Capin Crouse LLP
 

Capin Crouse is the leading national accounting firm whose mission and passion is to serve the not-for-profit community. The caliber of our clients and our high standards for how we serve them requires that we be highly selective in our recruiting process. We look for the best and brightest and then invest the time, technology, and resources that result in long-term success for both the firm and our people. We ask our staff to provide a high level of professional assurance service to our clients and be a proactive member of the practice office and firm. Responsibilities include: Assume leadership in an audit team to provide high quality service to clients. Supervise first year associates and provide training and oversight to new employees; Productive team member of the practice office through active participation in office events and initiativesContinue actively pursuing professional development with a concentrated focus on obtaining CPA certificationFurther and more deeply develop auditing knowledge and skills and demonstrate mastery of this by performing increasingly more complex audit and other assurance responsibilities independently. Exercise judgment with respect to audit engagements; Display integrity and professional behavior consistent with our values and mission; Act respectfully and consistent with client values. Qualifications: 4 year college degree in accounting or a related finance degree; Reputation of integrity, even in conflictive situations; Ability to produce high quality work while meeting deadlines; Ability to work in a team and demonstrate leadership and supervisory abilities; Personal flexibility and adaptability to travel to clients; Passion to serve others, especially nonprofit organizations. For additional information or to apply visit their website at www.capincrouse.com

Ship Career Connections

As a reminder we are now using SHIP Career Connection to post all job opportunities for alumni. To access the job board you must first register. Follow the registration process listed below. Contact alumni@ship.edu or call 717-477-1218 if you have questions or encounter problems.  New jobs added daily!

 

REGISTRATION INSTRUCTIONS

Step 1:  Go to https://shippensburg-csm.symplicity.com/students or click on www.ship.edu/alumni and follow the prompts through the Alumni Career Services button on the left.

Step 2:  Click "Alumni registration" on the right side of the page to register for a new ALUMNI account.

Step 3:  Create a unique Username (you don't need to know your "student id". Simply create a username)

Step 4: Enter the Temporary Password:  SHIPCC

Step 5: Click "Go"

Step 6: Complete the registration information- leave "School Address" information fields blank.

Step 7:  You will receive an automated message "Thank you for your interest. Your registration has been received and someone will contact you shortly regarding this registration"

Step 8:  Once your registration is reviewed and approved (please allow 48 hours), you will receive an automatic email with your username and a prompt to reset your password. 

Step 9:  Click on the link in the email to reset your password. (Note: this link will expire in 24 hours)

Step 10:  Set a new password and confirm. Click Save.

Step 11:  Start using the system.

 

USING SHIP CAREER CONNECTION YOU CAN:

  1. Search for postings for SHIP Alumni
     
    Through Ship Career Connection you can search jobs that are posted by SHIPPENSBURG UNIVERSITY or you can search the extended network of jobs that are posted by sister schools, etc. You can select "favorite" employers and contacts to have available quickly.
  2. Post your resume and other job-related documents.
     
    Always be sure to get a résumé critique before submitting it to employers. Email your résumé to alumni@ship.edu for a critique.
  3. Access the document library for helpful resources.
     
    These resources will aid you in your job search process. Resume samples for experienced professionals- those with at least one year of experience, can be found on the alumni website at www.ship.edu/alumni and click on Alumni Career Services.
  4. Connect with other alumni and mentors through professional networking.

    (Available now.  Additional information will be in the January 2014 newsletter.)

StrategyEmployer Perspective: Networking Your Way to the Top.

Networking outside of your company is a key path to follow to help advance your career. And, it's your responsibility to seek out these organizations and get involved. At some points in your career, you will lean on these groups for fresh new ideas or connections to firms you may want to hire. At other times, the connections you make can be valuable contacts for a job search. Many studies have shown that over 50% of candidates have identified opportunities and secured new jobs through referrals from networking. In today's economy, personal networking is especially critical to help you stand out during a job search due to the high unemployment rate and the talent available to hiring managers. Plus, candidates who apply for positions through online job boards only result in a response about 1-4% of the time (according to Jullien Gordon's blog post at www.careerchangechallenge.com). 

 

There is, however, an art to networking that's important to recognize. First, remember how important first impressions are. Dress professionally and wear some article of clothing that stands out. For women, that might be a bright colored, unique jacket or piece of jewelry, while men might wear an interesting tie. Secondly, be prepared. Have your elevator pitch ready so that you can tell someone in 30 seconds to 2 minutes about who you are, what you do and why you are there. Third, and most critical, it's about the conversation and making a real connection.

 

Networking is not having a drink with someone at happy hour and exchanging business cards that you merely file away. It's about meeting people and learning more about them than just their job title. It's about truly listening to what makes someone tick and hearing what they are not saying. Engaging in a conversation by asking someone a unique question will help you learn something interesting about them and make you memorable at the same time. After basic introductions, try posing questions like, "What have you found most valuable about this organization?" Or, "Have you read a good book lately that you could recommend?" When you attend an event, purposely sit next to someone you don't know instead of with your coworkers-even if that makes you uncomfortable. Introduce yourself and ask why they are at the event and if there's anything you can do to help them. Remember, networking isn't just about what's in it for you, it's also about helping other people. Ask for their business card and offer yours. If you discover interests in common, suggest following up to arrange time to get together over coffee, breakfast or lunch to learn ways to help each other. In the book, The Go-Giver, published a few years ago by Bob Burg and John David Mann, they provide five laws of stratospheric success based on the premise of giving. One of my favorites is the law of influence: "Your influence is determined by how abundantly you place other people's interests first."

 

Building relationships is most effective when done face to face, but social media can facilitate connections, provide opportunities to meet new people and reconnect with fellow alumni and prior colleagues, while expanding your sphere of influence-which can attract new connections. LinkedIn, for example, is currently the primary social platform for connecting to other business professionals. I follow the philosophy of only linking to people I know, have met or those with whom I have had a (phone or email) conversation. That way, when asked for an introduction to someone in my network, I'm confident that my connection is strong. If someone I don't know requests a connection, I often send them an 'inmail' message asking if we can arrange a phone call first to learn more about each other. You need to determine what works best for you and be thoughtful about how you build your online networking community. In addition to events and social media, reaching out to your current contacts and asking them for introductions to others is another path to meeting new people. You need to be strategic about the referrals you request and clear about why. Understand how your contact knows the individual so you have confidence in the strength of that connection. Ask your contact to introduce you over email and share your contact information. Follow up with the new connection and be clear about asking for their time over a 20-minute phone call, brief coffee-talk meet up or lunch and offer a few suggested dates and times. When you meet with the individual, be prepared with specific questions and requests to meet others in their network. Look for ways wherever possible where you might be able to help them as well. Be sure to follow up by sending a thank you-using postal mail for a more personal touch-and with a subsequent email on any outstanding actions they promised.

 

Networking within your company is also important. This is something I learned when I started working for a large firm with a very flat organizational structure. My boss merely gave me a list of key leaders in the company and told me to invite them to get together with me over a cup of coffee or lunch to understand their role and business. I was not given an org chart. I was not provided with an orientation to the company. I simply had to figure it out for myself. In time, I volunteered to work on cross-functional task forces for special projects which provided opportunities to meet people throughout the company. When promoted into a role and tasked with creating a new corporate competency, I had to network throughout the company, asking questions to better understand each business unit's challenges and offering to help. I established relationships with all of the business unit sales and marketing leaders and learned to navigate the organization to effectively get work done, add value to the company and make a difference. 

 

Your future, and the success of your career, is in your hands. No one but you knows your dreams and passions. And, it is unfortunately rare to find a company that will take you by the hand and map out a development plan to help you climb the corporate ranks. Ford R. Myers states in his book, Get the Job You Want, Even when No One's Hiring, that "We go through 12 years of education, possibly four more years of college, and sometimes even four more years of graduate school, and not one day is spent on how to manage your career." And he's right. It's up to you.  Networking, done right and consistently throughout your career, is one way to take control of your future.

 

Judy Cuffaro Arnold '85 has over 25 years' experience leading marketing strategy, demand generation and direct marketing operations. She is a past President and active member of the Philadelphia Direct Marketing Association (PDMA) and was recently nominated for the board of the Power Women's Roundtable (PWR).  Judy can be reached at jcarnold2@verizon.net

Need FREE Career Assistance?

It's the holidays but that doesn't mean you should stop job searching for the next 6 weeks. Prepare now. If you need assistance with your resume, the job search or other career questions contact Lorie Davis at alumni@ship.edu or call 717-477-1218.

 

There will not be a December alumni career newsletter. Watch for the first edition of 2014 in mid- January. Happy Holidays!

University Relations
Shippensburg University Alumni Association
717-477-1218
717-477-4071 (Fax)