Jim Grant's Blog

Help for Job Seekers – It's all about the process!

Q & A

Please note. I no longer plan on responding to questions. Please see my comments in the “Welcome” box on the Home page of this blog.



  1. I do not have a question but wanted to take the time to “Thank you” for your advice on contacting the Hiring Manager directly. You are exactly right I have sent over 400 resumes and can count on one hand how many interviews I have had.

    Again Thanks,


    Comment by Tracey | February 18, 2010 | Reply

  2. Hi Jim,

    I attended your very informative and helpful gathering last Saturday at CVCC.
    I should have asked this question at that time, but didn’t think of it.
    What do you advise should be printed on an unemployed persons business cards?

    Thank you,

    Comment by Tiffany Tucker | October 3, 2011 | Reply

    • Tittany, thanks for the question.

      Put on your business those things that will be on it when you land a job, except for an employer’s name. For example, include your name, a job title, your contact information (phone, email address). It’s OK to include city and state, but I’d suggest you leave street address off. Key words that are relavant to your profession are a good idea.

      Some simple design elements, like lines, colors, icons, are good, too. If you are in graphics design or related field, apply some of your skill to the design of your card..

      I do not suggest putting anything on the back of a business card. In my mind, it is overkill. Besides, who looks at the back of a business card???

      I hope you feel my response helps.


      Comment by Jim Grant | October 3, 2011 | Reply

  3. I was a previous employee for many years & left in very good terms with the President of the company , after 16 years I decided to re-applied for the same position–given a happy -to -hear from you and impressive- resume reply “would you take your family with you?”(to a foreign country) —will forward to “HR Director”–never heard from HR after many weeks. This time, I checked the status with him–he said “contact the HR Director” directly. This time I’m unsure if this a positive sign or not. What should I do?

    Comment by gsh1967 | June 19, 2012 | Reply

    • gsh1967 – You said you left on good terms with the president. You also said when you contacted him a second time, he said “Contact the HR Director.” Those two statements are don’t mesh. For example, why didn’t the president tell you that he told the HR Director to bring you in for an interview? – – – 90 times out of a 100, if a job seeker is told “Contact HR”, it’s the kiss of death. That is, they have no intention of considering you for an interview and they know it will be hard for you to get someone in HR to respond to you.

      Also, you didn’t indicate whether that employer has a job opening for you that they think you qualify for. If not, it reaffirms in my mind that the only thing that is happening is that they are being very polite in sending you the message that they don’t have an opportunity that would want to interview you about. – – – In otherwords, they’re letting you down gentlly.

      For future reference, any time someone tells you to “contact HR”, ask them, “Will you call HR beforehand, tell them that I will be calling, to take my call, and invite me in for an interview.” They probably won’t do it, but their response will give you an idea what they are really thinking.

      For the situation at hand, call the HR Director and tell him (or leave a message) that the president told you to call him. If necessary, call the HR Director 3 times and leave the same message. If you never hear from him, call the president back and tell him what is happening and ask him what he would suggest now.

      I hope you feel my response is helpful.


      Comment by Jim Grant | June 19, 2012 | Reply

      • Thanks Jim for the reply, very helpful. I don’t think I want to go very far of contacting the HR Director that’s why I have to ponder on the situation & seek advise. I do have some dignity left and never wanted to look desperate. However I’m thinking of writing a small note –thanking him for replying eventhough the job didn’t materialize. But before that—kindly give your opinion or thoughts why he is turning me down. (quite a story, hope not to bore you)

        The President himself hired me 23 years ago, the company was still small then, they only have personnel office instead of HR Department (I’m a creative professional) During my tenure, I really worked very hard and reported directly to him—helped him in many of his personal projects, I became close to his family as well. He promoted me from junior to a lead position. 7 years after that, I decided to move-on with my career, leaving the country which he was very against. ( I was heartbroken from the split-up with my fiancee, will you blame me?) Another 8 years past, I returned back to the same country with a great job offer from his ex-boss who was the Director of the company. Little that I know that his boss was fired from some scandal he made. He put up his own enterprise after he was fired and became successful and that’s when he asked me to join his company. Rumors/ stories about this termination only went to my attention when I was already with the Director’s company. Well, after 2 years later I left the organization. (We would have events and he would invite the President and he will attend. So I know they are in good terms). I continued my career here in the States & got married. The industry I am in is not too rosy during this recession (plus my maternal leave slowed down my progress) but I do have a job.
        Keeping up with current news about that company, I read they are expanding later this year (and for the next 5-10 years) tri-fold times of what they are now, that’s why they gonna have a massive hiring. It’s really a golden opportunity for me or for anyone. A $billion- dollar corporation, why wouldn’t I ask for the opportunity again?

        I was an outstanding employee, now loaded with qualifications even more—what did I do wrong of asking? Did I applied too soon? Was it a mistake of working for his boss? Did he think he made a mistake of hiring me before? Why would I even have the nerve to go to him when he was the one who hired me, completely knows me and my work ethics? (Not that strange HR!)

        I don’t know if I’m using my emotional intelligence well enough. I want him to think though that I’m fine with the outcome without giving him guilt feelings. (Though, it does hurts) I want to end it in a professional manner without hurting my future in the long run.

        I will definitely promote your book on facebook and to my friends–Thank God I found your blog!

        Comment by gsh1967 | June 21, 2012

      • gsh1967 – I read your email closely. You provided a lot of historical information about the relationship between the president, his organizations, and yourself. However I could only speculate in regard to your question, “Why is he turning me down.?” – – – What all your historical information convinced me of is that there could be any of 10 different reasons why he might be turning you down.

        But the reason he might be turning you down is immaterial. Whatever it is, I’m betting there isn’t much you can do about the reason. The ony impportant issue is what are you going to do now?

        I’d suggest you contact the president and tell him which job you want and ask him for an interview for the job. – – – No notes. If you send him a note, there’s probably a 90% chance you will never hear back from him. Call him and ask on the phone. – – – As you say, “Why wouldn’t I ask for the opportunity again?”

        You can play the speculation game all you want. All it will do is cause you to suffer from “paralysis from analysis” and worry about what might happen.

        Take the bull by the horns. – – – You won’t be any worse off than you are right now.

        Do you want to lose out on this opportunity because you did nothing?


        Comment by Jim Grant | June 21, 2012

  4. Hi Jim:
    You are a blessing to help people like this! My simple question is “what is a T letter?”

    Comment by cr | June 30, 2013 | Reply

    • robbinsc260 – Thank you for your kind words.

      In regard to a “T-Letter”, you can find a complete description in another one of my posts. Search / look for a post titled, “Use the Document That is More Important Than Your Resume”.

      I hope you feel it helps you out.


      Comment by Jim Grant | June 30, 2013 | Reply

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