Customer Reviews: What Does Somebody Have to Do to Get a Job Around Here! 44 Insider Secrets and Tips that Will Get You Hired
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on May 6, 2008
I ordered What Does Somebody Have To Do To Get A Job Around Here after having searched for a job for over a year unsuccessfully. I am an older worker and have not had to look for a job for many, many years. Quite frankly I was baffled and frustrated by what I was seeing - overt discrimination, low paying jobs with very stiff requirements and 45 hour work weeks at a minimum. There were few responses to my initial contact with cover letter and resume. When I had interviews that seemed to go well I didn't get the follow up call.
I got Ms. Shapiro's book last week and the clouds have parted in many areas! The first thing I have done is follow her guidelines in changing my resume. The eye opener for me was her statement, "It's a billboard, not a book." It has to grab the hiring managers attention like a billboard does when you are on a highway. Make them interested, want to learn more. Full disclosure is not needed. My resume was a book that covered 30+ years of work experience. It was a hard process for me but I now have a crisp, eye catching resume.
Ms. Shapiro offers much more information and advice that I have started to put into use. The book is chock full of helpful insights and she is available to answer questions on her website, [...]. I have found her to be very generous with her time, information and encouragement.
I wish I had this book before I began my job search! I can't recommend it highly enough
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on January 24, 2009
I have frequently wondered why seemingly every book here receives positive reviews. Well, I think I get it now. This is the 4th "job-hunting" book I've owned; and I couldn't gather the energy to review the other 3 after they did nothing for me. Most of their ilk aren't going to offer you bad advice, but I've found they either recommend drastic changes that are too difficult and time consuming to practically incorporate, or they give bland pointers that anyone with any shred of common-sense should know (dress nice and research!).

Cynthia explains how and why hiring managers are shallow and petty in some of their decisions. She neither apologizes on their behalf or confirms it's the ideal way to hire: they just act the way they do because most of the time they have to and explains the simple things you do to adjust to their criteria. This objective tone is effective because it boosted my confidence enough to convince me that all the rejections I've received didn't make me an idiot; but at the same time I can't play the victim card and blame everyone else.

The resume/cover letter "secrets" are two examples that are easy to apply to your own situation, because they actually encourage less work and more simplification on your part while achieving better results.

For me though, my resume has never been the problem. The interview has. How can I fake confidence after achieving so little success? Well at one point the author recommends writing out all the fears/thoughts on your job search. It is encouraging to see that most of those concerns are in fact quite silly. I have often suspected that "what questions to ask" recommendations from other "career experts" were questionable, and it was enlightening to see that suspicion validated by somebody as experienced as Cynthia in the "Interviewers don't hear what you're saying" section. I feel better prepared for behavorial-style interviewing after being told to just have a few stories prepared, and remember it's about packaging more than details that will likely come across as boring or confusing to the interviewer.

I'm a fairly harsh judge but I've upgraded from 4 to 5 stars. I eventually got an offer with a nice raise to pull me away from a horrible job of 3years. One of the "experts" on a Career board that rhymes with 'Nonster' said I would be insane to negotiate because "they might rescind the offer", but I was able to get another week's vacation just by asking for it politely as Ms. Shapiro suggests.

To those who think she is too cynical or whatever, I suggest they watch a corny romance movie to make themselves feel better about the world. This book is designed to help your career and give some practical insight, not to give you a warm and fuzzy feeling inside.
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on August 15, 2008
This book was worth its weight in gold for my husband's job search. After two long years looking for a job, my husband was incredibly frustrated and discouraged. He was an experienced legal professional with excellent credentials, but employers just didn't seem interested in his resume. He knew that he had to be doing something wrong but had no idea what. Then he got Cynthia Shapiro's book. Talk about results! He read the book in one weekend - applied all of the suggestions - and suddenly everything changed. Now he had interviews, call-backs, just an amazing amount of interest from potential employers. He quickly landed his dream job, and got a substantial salary increase in the process. (Amazingly, even now, companies are calling him with requests to schedule "back-up" interviews in case things don't work out with the company that he ended up joining.... can you imagine??) I only wish my husband had this book at the beginning of his job search. Folks, if you or someone you know is looking for a job, Cynthia Shapiro's book is the real deal. It is an amazing resource for job hunters, and IT WORKS.
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on April 14, 2008
Like another reviewer, after reading this book I had some questions. My past experience is somewhat atypical and, as a recent graduate, am currently experiencing my first-ever professional job search. After finishing her book in just about four days, I fixed up my resume and cover letter - using her advice - and then sent her an email, expecting to get a response in a few days, if at all, and from an assistant. To my complete surprise, she called me later that day to give me my "free 15 minute consultation", which I am sure has added up to a bit more than that. She was amazingly kind and considerate, helpful more than I could have imagined, and also a good cheerleader.

In a few days I'm heading off to my first job interview with a great deal of confidence - not only because of my own skills but also because, thanks to her book, I feel I understand the hiring process much better than I ever have before. This book, and this author, I highly recommend.
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on April 10, 2008
I found this book to be highly insightful and informative. As Cynthia book glaringly illustrates, as job seekers, what has been taught to us in the past is woefully incomplete or grossly incorrect. This book lifts the "fog" of secrecy regarding a typical job search and hiring decisions, and confirms what some job seekers had long suspected, but rarely confirmed, regarding the process.

This book helps you to recognize the sometime subtle signs regarding your chances of being hired, warning signs to look out for after you have been hired, and the signs to look out for when "...your services are no longer required".

I also have to personally thank Cynthia for being a gracious, attentive author regarding here book. After reading her riveting book, I had a few question still left in my mind regarding my own particular situation. I contacted Cynthia and the telephone that is provided in here book, expecting that I would be connected to an answering service that would eventually provide me with the information that I was seeking. To my great surprise, Cynthia responded to my telephone promptly, graciously answering my questions between conference calls during her busy schedule.

Clearly, this was an uncommon example of an author really going out of her way to assist one of her readers, and for that, I am extremely grateful.

Again, I highly recommend this book. In this time of economic uncertainty, this book is invaluable in being able to have the necessary skills to properly locate the right job.
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on April 22, 2011
I read this book before I started my job search. So sadly, I can't provide any insights to how I would have done without the Shapiro's help. But I can say that I think it would have gone very poorly.

Before Shapiro:

My cover letter read like a letter. It was professional and written in a straight forward manner, but it also had long sentences and big blocks of text.

My resume read like a book. And the word "I" appeared all over it. Seriously, I doubt I would have gotten a single call with that thing.

I'm a very open, honest person. I know that I would have fallen for any of the traps to reveal personal info. I've only been on five interviews, and three of the interviewers tried to trick me (I think). One started talking about how her boyfriend liked to call and text her at work and how sweet that was. Two talked about their demanding kids and one of these also talked about all the office pranks they liked to pull in their workplace. Without Shapiro's book, I would have been completely unprepared to deflect these statements.

After Shapiro:

My cover letter has a single opening sentence that tells what job I am applying for. After that I highlight my three most valuable qualities. Below that I have a closing sentence and then my name.

About 50% of my resume was cut and pasted into a document called "Interview Success Stories". I left only the very best stuff. I made bullet lists and bolded a couple flashy things.

If the interviewer mentioned anything personal, I did not respond in kind.

I came to the interview prepared for anything, even those curve ball questions. I had my success stories ready to go and felt more confident for it.


I got a job! Granted, not a fancy one. I am a recent college graduate, so I was shooting for an entry level position. I job hunted for only three weeks and went on five interviews. In my small city / large town, jobs are scarce. Many of my friends take two or three months to find minimum wage jobs at department stores. I am shocked that I got hired so quickly. It could just be luck. But even so, I interviewed for five out of six applications. That's pretty darn good, and I credit Shapiro for my success.
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on June 12, 2008
I saw Cynthia Shapiro on CNN promoting "What Does Somebody Have To Do To Get A Job Around Here?" and really liked her warmth and articulacy. Needed a job, bought the book. What a fast, entertaining, and profoundly helpful read.

All the nagging questions I had about a process I didn't understand--even some issues I didn't know existed--were laid out in a very clear, friendly, and enjoyable format.

I had read some reviews on this site saying that Cynthia Shapiro does free consultations and even calls back on the same day. I found myself in a confusing situation during a job offer (a company I like, but at a much lower rate than they advertised). I left a message for Ms. Shapiro and she called back promptly, gave me a pro's perspective on my situation given my salary history, and some great ideas for negotiating nevertheless.

I am so happy with this product and very much hope to have the chance to work with Ms. Shapiro in the future.
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on May 1, 2008
I just read this book in a day and a half. If you are looking for a job, think you might need to look for a job or want to help someone else, this is the book for you (or them). I graduated from college nearly 8 years ago and this is just the kind of information I could've used then and that I still can use now. The author breaks everything down and leaves no doubt as to why what you've been doing in your job search and even in your current job has been unsuccessful in getting you where you want to go. There aren't any company insiders, HR people or recruiters who are going to tell you what Cynthia Shapiro tells you; they are just going to expect you to know it. Getting hired and staying employed is a game and these are definitely the rules. Also, when you email Cynthia, she does call you back personally and will give you some of the best advice you've gotten in your career.
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on April 24, 2008
I have been reading several books and this is by far the BEST for giving you all the details you need when trying to get a job. And you can actually e-mail her and get a free 15 min consulation. She actually contacts you back herself. She has been all over the news and major magazines as a top career coach.
Trust me buy this book first.
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on August 8, 2012
I saw a clip of Cynthia giving advice on a local news show so I searched her name and found this book along with Corporate Confidential. This book is a must have for anyone who was recently laid off after a long employment history with a company, anyone who's re-entering the work force, anyone who needs to polish up on interview skills and how to answer those dreaded questions HR throws at you. I definitely feel more prepared now that I have the inside scoop. Go ahead, grill me for an hour and ask about my weaknesses and where do I see myself in 5 years....I'm ready to fire back! Last time I went on a job interview, I was caught off-guard by the scenario, situational type questions and thinking wow, the questions have changed since I interviewed for a job 20 some years ago. Now I know how to prepare to have success stories to tell. Another section I found very useful is the compensation negotiation after an offer is made. I always wonder if I should just accept an offer they throw at you or would you seem too greedy if you ask for more than what you're making now if you switch jobs. I HIGHLY recommend this book. Make sure you mark the pages that you feel you need to work on and practice answering those questions. My husband found it very useful as well and he used the tips about creating a cover letter. Great book and thank you, Cynthia.
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