Nov. 27, 2008 -- Even as unemployment has risen, we're more determined than ever to find pockets of optimism and job success.
"GMA's" Great American Job Fairs have already resulted in dozens of hires, which is very good news. Among the successes: Jackson Hewitt in Atlanta has hired tax preparers for the upcoming busy season. Ryla, which runs a comprehensive call center for corporations, made five hires at our Atlanta event. And just yesterday—less than one week after our Chicago job fair—Aramark announced nine hires directly from that event and said that several other candidates are interviewing for many of the 58 openings in that city. More success stories are on the way.
At the same time, the "GMA" Job Clubs are busy around the country.
While I'm thrilled for the efforts of all of our groups—from the Salty Legs in Boston to the CareerWorks Catalyst Club in New Jersey to Alabama's Career Connect Club—I'm especially proud of the Chesapeake Bay Club in Virginia.
Spend two minutes watching their story on the local ABC station, WVEC 13.
Not only do they meet weekly, but group leader Laurie Baggett also secured free haircuts and image makeovers for every member.
Baggett says a polished image, including a good hair style, is not a luxury, but rather a necessity in this job market. She suggests approaching a salon in your area by playing off the holiday season.
"This year people are not asking for a new TV, but rather a new job," says Baggett, who successfully swayed Anthony & Company to donate its services. "I'd ask, 'Will you take part in helping this Christmas wish come true for 12 people?'"
Baggett is so passionate about the concept that she's willing to call salons on behalf of GMA Job Clubs anywhere in the nation. She also believes the salon's kind gesture for job club members can be leveraged to generate positive publicity and word of mouth for the salon and the club members. That in turn can lead to new clients and job offers.
Our GMA Job Club in Chicago was treated to a big confidence boost from the stylists at the Mario Tricoci Salon on trendy North Michigan Avenue. The added bounce in their step enabled our ladies to get back out there to positively pound the pavement in their job search.
I encourage you to start a Job Club this holiday weekend. Create your own group or submit your details in the link above and we'll connect you with a group in your area. And then let's work together to make great things happen!
Tory Johnson is the Workplace Contributor on Good Morning America and the CEO of Women For Hire. Visit her website at www.womenforhire.com.