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Conor Cunneen

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SHEIFGAB the World: 8 Building Blocks to Successful Job Transition
by Conor Cunneen   

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Publisher:  CreateSpace ISBN-10:  1442145439 Type: 


Copyright:  May 2009 ISBN-13:  9781442145436

This is the book Rod Blagojevich, Sarah Palin, George Bush and others in job transition should read.
Eight great building blocks to successful job transition presented in a unique fictional format featuring an Irish job transition guru with the intriguing name of Finbarr Kozlowski.
Searingly honest, often funny, but truly helpful for the job seeker.
Motivational humorist and author Conor Cunneen has brought the vitality, insight and energy from his SHEIFGAB seminars into a lively, memorable and oh-so-useful book for the person suffering the pain and frustration of unemployment and job search.


Irishman Finbarr Kozlowski visits America to study job transition. Back in the "old sod," he is a job transition expert and job transition guru. He is invited to present his unique program - SHEIFGAB the World, 8 Building Blocks to Successful Job Transition -  to some disillusioned, pained, dispirited jobseekers.

Finbarr says SHEIFGAB is the Irish word for 'Do it' or 'Make it happen,' (Well, Irish in the sense he originated the word).

SHEIFGAB is also the acronym for the 8 Building Blocks to Successful Job Transition.

In an endearingly impish manner, the Irish job search guru pulls no punches with his audience, challenging them not to get sloppy during job transition. In a manner that could only be presented by a writer who has been referenced as "Mark Twain with a brogue," the hero tells job seekers why off-color jokes will help their interview and why they should listen to the Sex Pistols!

He tells jobseekers they are in Unpaid Employment: NOT unemployed and shows how they can walk into an interview 12-feet tall and Bulletproof.

Some of the concepts are different and highly original and not ones you will hear from other job transition experts, but they are all of great benefit to anyone going through the pain of job search, something which Kozlowski refers to as a "Rite of Passage."

Based on the author's workshops which garner rave reviews, this is a must read for job seekers, keeping you energized and focused on the job search, ensuring that you can AND you will succeed in this tough, frustrating challenge.

Finbarr moved his hand through a mop of red hair, still damp after the shower. He looked at the resumes on the kitchen table, remembering the people he met two days previously. His American host and cousin, Jake Boyd, looked encouragingly at him, “You ready to rock there, Finbarr?”
“I think so. A bit nervous though. I sometimes think I should keep my big mouth shut. If I had not attended that job club on Monday I wouldn’t have this presentation today. It’s funny, isn’t it? No matter how competent a person is, there is always a sense of apprehension when entering a new environment.”
Scheduled to spend four weeks in the United States researching his book on the transition process, a topic dear to his heart and one he often spoke on in Ireland, the Irishman had agreed to present his program to a number of job seekers.
“Finbarr, you are an amazing specimen!” Jake responded. “You real-ly are. You present a short piece on successful transition at a job club and they love it. They ask you to do a longer version and you wonder, you wonder if it will fly? For crying out loud, you are the person who proclaims you have to SHEIFGAB the World; you’re the guy who says, ‘You’ve got to Do It’ and you’re the guy who says, ‘You’ve got to Make It Happen’ in this transition process.”
“That’s right. That’s right, I do,” he said – a large grin illuminating his freckled face.
“Here, give me a look at that sheet again.”
Jake grabbed the one-page handout;
SHEIFGAB the World: 8 Building Blocks to Successful Job Transition.
“So SHEIFGAB is an acronym for these 8 building blocks? And I pronounce it like 'Sheaf' as in 'Sheaf of wheat.’ ”
“That’s right! That’s right! Structure, Help, Environment, Improve, Family, Goals, Attitude and Behavior. Every one of these building blocks will help the job seeker become more productive and engaged during the transition process and when that happens, he or she can walk into the interview room 12-feet tall AND Bulletproof.”
“12-feet tall and Bulletproof! That will impress any recruiter. It’s a confidence thing, isn’t it? That’s good stuff, Finbarr.”
“Thanks, Jake. Yes, it is a confidence thing. Transition is a mind game. Whether it is Chicago or Cork, Denver or Dublin, the concept, the SHEIFGAB concept works. The job seeker is the same all over the world, experiencing the same emotions.”
“Like what?”
“Job loss, job transition—it really hurts people, Jake. I could see it at Monday’s meeting. The ideas and concepts are the same the world over. Frustration, pain, anger, sadness, sometimes self-pity. You know, ‘Why did it happen to me?’ kind of thing. Job transition is designed to do your head in. Think about it. Everyone attending this morning’s meeting has had on-the-job training and trained for paid employment. But none of them received any training for job search and none of them, NOT ONE, had the slightest idea of the emotional rollercoaster they would experience during the transition process. It hurts people, Jake, and it hurts their family and it hurts their friends, so that’s why Jake, that’s why they have to SHEIFGAB the World, to Do It and to Make It Happen.”
“Does SHEIFGAB mean anything?”
“It’s an Irish word for ‘Do It’ and ‘Make It Happen.’ ”
“Jake! That you would doubt me! I’m shocked. Well, it’s kind of an Irish word. I mean, it’s been created by an Irishman.”
“That’s right, that’s right. So that makes it an Irish word and it allows me to say to job seekers – ‘SHEIFGAB the World, Do It and Make It Happen,’ and they will.”
“And I think they will, Finbarr. You will have them jumping and dancing higher than Michael Flatley. Who’ve you got attending?”
Finbarr paused for a moment and then quickly counted the resumes. As he did so, he shook his head.
“Ha! We’ll see who turns up. Fourteen people at Monday’s meeting said they would come, but look how many confirmed. Seven! I’ve got seven confirmations right now. That is something that pisses me off. The lack of follow through amongst job seekers amazes me. Fifty per-cent of those who made a commitment haven’t followed through – that is the same the world over. Don’t these people realize they are doing themselves a disservice with their lack of follow up?”
“A lot of people in a job search don’t like to bother others. They feel as if they are intruding, Finbarr.”
“Crap. Total crap! When you are in job search, what are you doing? You are selling THE most important product you’ve ever sold in your life. You’re in sales, Jake. When did you hold back on a sales call be-cause you didn’t want to bother someone?”
“Only once if I recall, but man, you’re getting antsy. Time for me to make a few phone calls.”
Finbarr looked again at the resumes of the confirmed attendees. As he did so, he guessed their ages.
Nicole, 26. Relatively new to the job search process. Formerly an ac-count executive in a marketing services company. He remembered her shy smile.
Bill, 47. Not easy to forget. This guy was obviously disillusioned and angry after nine months into his search. He had previously been a project manager with a large insurance company.
Viktor, 42. A mountain of a man, well dressed with a large bush of white hair and an enthusiastic handshake that made Finbarr wince. Viktor’s job in car sales was terminated four months ago.
TJ, accountant, in his job search for seven months. Finbarr struggled to recall him.
Tammy, 39. Seven months in transition. She had jumped from job to job.
Sally, 51. A paralegal. Her husband was also in transition.
Charles, 42. Software developer. This was his third time in transition since 2001. “I’m getting good at this transition thing, unfortunately!” Charles had said.
Finbarr thought, Ha! If someone was to write a book on the transition process, this group would be a microcosm of the whole scenario. It’s not surprising I suppose. Transition impacts everyone these days. It’s a rite of passage – if
job seekers could only appreciate that.
Jake re-entered the room. “My Irish cousin, have you calmed down yet? You should get moving if you want to get to the career center on time.”
Finbarr carefully gathered the resumes and paperwork and placed them in his backpack. “You’re right; I don’t want to be late. Wouldn’t make a good impression. I’ll see you this evening.”
Follow up – Always Follow up
Finbarr moved to the door, and then paused. “Jake, you said there was only one occasion you didn’t make a follow-up call. How come you remember that?”
“You would ask! I sent a proposal to a potential client. She told me to follow up, but she was really cool, standoffish even. So I let it slide. I bumped into that woman at a networking event months later. She was very nice, which surprised me, and told me she had been expecting another call from me. When it didn’t happen, she gave the business to a competitor. The reason she was cranky the day I phoned was because her husband had filed divorce papers. Pretty good reason I suppose, but I lost a sixty-grand contract because I didn’t follow up properly. Maybe you should tell your job seekers that. Always follow up. It pays off.”
“I’ll tell them that, Jake. Is there a little story there?”
“You would ask! We dated for a few months after that conversation. That time I did follow up. Tell your job seekers that, Finbarr. Always follow up. Now get out of here.”
“I will Jake. I will. What is it you Yanks say? ‘Have a nice day.’ ”
“And Top o’ the morning to you, Finbarr.”
As Finbarr opened his car door, Jake called out to him.
“Hey, Finbarr.”
“SHEIFGAB the World, man. Do It, Make It Happen. And tell them to follow up. ALWAYS follow up.”

Professional Reviews

Transition Help for Job Seekers
How should a job seeker spend his/her days? This book, written by an award-winning humorist, has the answer. "SHEIFGAB the World, 8 Building Blocks to Successful Job Transition", takes you through the steps of structuring your days for successfully landing a job while keeping a positive attitude. The book is in story form, following a group of job seekers through the process of learning the eight building blocks. The story makes it a quick read. The book is particularly helpful for those in the job search for a long time, but new job seekers will also find it useful. I highly recommend this book.

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