The economy is crumbling. More and more people find themselves without work as corporations go bankrupt or try to cut costs anywhere they can in an effort to stay afloat. For a new college grad, the last thing they want to do is look for a job in this kind of market. The interviewing process has always been stressful for someone entering the work force, but now, more than ever, an extreme scarcity of positions leaves grads overwhelmed and intimidated, trying to find a way to differentiate themselves in the face of extreme competition.
But one man, Landon Long, CEO of Interview Mastermind LLC, relishes the interviewing process. And he doesn’t even need a job…
“I am constantly looking for new ways to stand out in the flooded job market we’re currently in,” Long exclaims, an excited energy about him. “Recently, I sent out a tester resume that used about twenty-five percent of the techniques I teach and received twenty-three responses from employers who want to interview me within two weeks…”
But Long Was Not Always An Interviewing Expert.
Born to a family of immigrants who knew nothing of corporate America, Long was the first person in his family to get a college education. Like many of today’s youth, he had high hopes for the quality of life in his future. He was a social young man who enjoyed going out with friends. International travel was in his blood. He wasn’t particularly materialistic, but he liked to own and take care of nice things.
He was 22 years old when he entered his senior year at the university, and like most seniors, he was thrilled for all the hard work to be over so he could get on with the rest of his life. Things seemed on the up. Even though he was doing the typical senior slacking and goofed off through the fall and winter quarter, he had an internship lined up and assurance from the direct supervisor, his supervisor’s supervisor, and the senior director of the company that his position was secure.
Then, His Plans Crumbled To Dust, And His Golden Future Slipped Through His Fingerprints.
Long was being strung along. He had tried all year to secure his offer letter and was depending on the verbal promises of his new employers, but just as graduation loomed around the corner the vice president of the company decided market conditions weren’t right for hiring. Four out of the five interns expecting a position, including Long, were denied and turned back out at the last minute to find new positions.
With graduation just ahead, Long was devastated. The future he was promised vaporized before his very eyes, leaving him jobless and confused as the spring quarter of his senior year drew to a close. Four years of college and hard work, and he had nothing to show for it.
Though embarrassed and humiliated by the position he had left himself in, he gathered himself and hit the streets, applying for multiple positions but receiving little response. He turned to the career center—a reasonable decision for someone in his situation…or so he thought…
This is where Long’s real journey began. After driving an hour and sitting for thirty minutes to discuss what to do about his future, the career center employee handed him a resume packet with some samples and sent him away.
“I Was Just A Number,” Long Says.
“It just blew me away how ineffective and impersonal my experience was. I asked a couple of my friends who went to other universities at different states and they said they had the same experience with their career centers. It just didn’t make sense to me…Where is all our tuition money going?”
Not one to give up, Landon took the problem to his professors. But it seemed they knew nothing of finding a career either. Where were the mentors he needed? “I asked three different professors for advice and every one of them told me to do something different than what the last professor told me.”
It was frustrating but Long pressed on. He scoured online resources, looking for a door that would open to his future. He looked for a magic bullet everyone else had somehow missed, but it just wasn’t there.
Just when he was ready to give up, his friend sent him a video that talked about about increasing the Perceived Value of your products and tapping into the Psychology of customers through Marketing. His eyes began to open. He realized something he never noticed before because no one had ever told him—”Marketing is pretty much THE MOST important skill you could learn in your life.”
“It Was All About Psychology,” He Realized.
Everything was. Why had he never seen this before?
Long found a new passion in his search, but he now had a whole new set of rules to follow. He plunged himself into the literature available on job-hunting, soaking up everything he could about hiring psychology and the interview process.
After a couple weeks of this, he took what he had learned and headed back out into the field to do a little testing with the methods he had learned. “Some worked but many of them just plain sucked. So I created my own techniques from scratch.” Long was determined to find the answers.
As time went on, he saw he had developed an edge where most people were sleepwalking. He didn’t see one door open for him—many doors began to open. With every resume he turned in, more employers called to arrange interviews. With every phone call, more and more led to sitting in an office discussing his future.
Finally, All His Work Paid Off.
Long was offered a position starting at $48,000. He was ecstatic and proud of what he had accomplished, and he ran home to tell his friend, who was not so optimistic. He sat him down and opened his eyes once again, convincing him he needed to do some research before accepting the offer.
Long was eager, but he followed his friend’s advice and found that there was a lot about the company that made it a bad choice for him. Just weeks before he had been devastated about his failure to find work, and there he was calling up an employer to turn down a job. But he was now an expert interviewer. He hit the streets again, a new confidence in his step.
In the end, it was the right decision. Long found a new position with one of the most prestigious firms in his industry and was offered $50,000 a year.
After Some Carefully Calculated Negotiations, Him And The Employer Settled At A Starting Salary Of $60,000!
The difference between Long’s story and the story of so many other frustrated college grads is that he found a way to beat the odds, but his methodology shows that it isn’t luck that allowed him to do it. Rather, it was an understanding of the hiring process that is more human than any college career center acknowledges.
There was a process that could be used, he saw—a whole new set of rules that relied on human psychology and social dynamics. Long decided it was time to teach others how to do what he had done.
At first, he focused on helping his friends. He harnessed the power of his journey and developed a system, a series of steps anyone could follow to get their dream job. Those friends went on to get their own interviews and their own success. As he watched unemployed, bitter people acquire success, he felt like he was changing lives.
The Results Of His “Students” Continued To Improve.
“Another friend of mine who was already making over $100,000 a year even used some of my methods to get himself a $10,000 raise!” Long exclaims. The results were clear.
From there, he began to coach college seniors. There was no one else for them to turn to that understood their needs. Rather than the scarcity mindset most modern students have, he began to show people that jobs were there if they knew how to get them.
Long no longer worries about bills or the threat of unemployment. If he lost his job or his business today, he knows he could easily get another, because he knows the psychology of hiring. He knows he’ll never have to turn to his parents or the government to save him. He can have a stimulating career rather than work in an environment that sucks the life out of him, and if he does get stuck in a limiting environment, he knows he can just change careers, in any industry.
“This knowledge brings power in our society,” Long explains.
“Most Importantly, You Can Learn It And I Can Teach YOU. ”