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Slice the Salami – Tips for Life and Leadership, One Slice at a Time

A short author’s bio

Slice the Salami – Tips for Life and Leadership, One Slice at a Time

Artie Lynnworth

Artie Lynnworth is an author and a retired successful executive who brings his global experiences down to basics that are easy to learn and can be immediately applied. His style is highly interactive, fun and includes techniques that will stick with you. Starting as an engineer with a masters degree in administration, Lynnworth’s 40-year career rapidly progressed up the corporate ladder from entry level positions to manufacturing plant manager in several USA states, to senior vice president responsible for global businesses in Japan, Singapore, Indonesia, Europe, North and South America, and included living in Chile South America for nearly a decade as his company’s general manager there. An avid volunteer mentor, he loves to coach, teach and share his tips for success, often doing pro-bono workshops around the USA and as an adjunct instructor for college and university classes. His book summarizes his life and work tips in an easy to read format that allows you to quickly use his process and approach for your own success. Please see his website, http://artie.lynnworth.com/ , for more information about his book and his background.

A book synopsis / Key Ideas

Whether you are a start-up entrepreneur or corporate manager, a high school or college student or an at-home family leader, this book provides hundreds of practical tips for success in life and career. Three chapters are dedicated to interviews and resumes, from either side of the table (as an interviewee trying to land the perfect position, or the interviewer trying to select the best candidate). Sixteen other chapters deal with themes such as how to make change in your life or to help others change theirs, and topics like time management, effective communications and more.

Why did you write this book?

Slice the Salami – Tips for Life and Leadership, One Slice at a TimeI have a passion for teaching, coaching and sharing techniques for success. This book provides a way to expand the coverage of the tips I share, knowing that more will benefit from these strategies and tactics for improving lives, businesses and work teams. In my corporate life I enjoyed coaching my groups to success, often with great satisfaction as we changed lack-luster plants and business units into corporate leaders, saving failing companies by improving product quality, profits and customer service, and inspiring exceptional performance from our employees. In non-work environments, I have been a volunteer mentor for nearly 15 years for a global organization (Menttium.com) that matches mid-career professionals with out-of-company mentors, helping these individuals achieve major career and life changes. I continue to conduct workshops on how to interview to find the job you want or to select the best candidate for vacant positions. I volunteer teach these topics at the university and community college level and have had great satisfaction with the feedback of many success stories from participants who had been trying to better their lives with job searches or post-graduate (medical school) acceptance with no luck for over a year, and then after we go through my process they get the job, get the acceptance and sometimes as quickly as one day after our workshop. The ability to broaden the net of coverage, to help more than those who benefit from face-to-face experiences, encouraged me to communicate these practical tips in the written format with my book. Many who have read the book have been inspired to purchase many more copies as gifts for friends and relatives to help them as they were helped, or to give copies of the book to their work unit members so that company performance and teamwork would flourish.

why readers should buy your book and what they will get out of it after reading it?

 

Are you a hiring manager looking to select and retain the best candidate? Do you want your effective communications to make things happen, as a productive “change maker,” and manage your time better? This book shows you how in an easy-read format with practical tips for success.

Have you sliced a salami lately?

This might be the best change-making advice to consider, and is covered in Lynnworth’s new book, “Slice the Salami – Tips for Life and Leadership, One Slice at a Time,” available in soft cover and eBook format. The strange title is explained in Chapter One, with the rest of the book covering many additional practical themes such as how to make positive change in your life, how to be more effective at work and in life, and includes a special focus on interviewing and resume tips.

Now back to the salami. We often get excited or inspired to make drastic changes in our lives only to find a few days later that our inspiration has worn off and we return to our old habits. Lynnworth explains that it is like trying to eat a whole salami in one bite: you may choke on the effort! On the other hand, Lynnworth says, “If you slice a piece of salami and put it into a tasty sandwich, it goes down easily. The next day another sandwich, then another, and before you know it you have consumed the whole salami.” A successful change process can be mastered in this way, making small incremental steps in the right direction, and allowing positive reinforcement to encourage you to continue. Before you know it, you have mastered the change you sought.

Sometimes, however, we don’t have time for a “slice at a time.” What then? Lynnworth covers that in Chapter Two, “See the Flames, Smell the Smoke!” Yes, Lynnworth has fun with his titles. This chapter shows you how to create a sense of urgency in those you wish will make changes at work or in the family setting (or to inspire yourself to more rapid changes).

Speaking of time, he addresses time management in Chapter Three, and then other topics such as effective communications, attitude, leadership, volunteerism, lifelong learning, work/life balance and even ethics within the 19 chapters of the book. Three chapters are dedicated to the interview and resume process, from either side of the table, as an interviewee or interviewer. These three chapters alone could be worth the purchase of the book since they can so quickly impact your ability to get the position you want or to be sure to select the right candidate for your own work team.

Three key concepts for hiring the right candidates

For those of you who are entrepreneurs, or a department manager of any kind, where your business success depends on the quality and ability of those who work for you, the practical tips and strategies covered in the chapters on interviewing may be critical to your success. If you are a potential interviewee, seeking new opportunities (at work or seeking admission in a university setting) these same chapters will guide you to success. Lynnworth starts with three key concepts that you must understand, and can prepare for from the comfort of your home or office, before the interview process ever begins.

First is that every job has critical skills for success, whether the job be hamburger flipper at a fast food joint, or as a CEO of a major corporation. Lynnworth explains that “If you and your hiring team are not crystal clear on what skills are needed for success, and if you don’t specifically screen candidates based on those skills, then you risk hiring people who will not make a dent in your overall company plans and objectives.” In his book he explains a process you can follow in the stages of pre-recruiting and pre-interviewing that will focus your team on addressing the key skills for success for your group. A few fun exercises are included with tips to show you how to narrow down your list to a manageable and critical few, and then begin the search.

The second concept is one of prediction. After all, Lynnworth explains, “You are betting your company’s future on the expected performance of the person you hire. So you must be clear about what are the best predictors of future performance. Very simply, it’s successful past performance on the very skills that you must be assured will be done well.”

Finally, the third concept of preparation is to know what to ask (and NOT ask), and what to listen for when interviewing candidates. Behavioral interviewing that addresses actual past performance by the interviewee is ideal, Lynnworth advocates, since that is the best measure to know what to expect from the candidate. Past performance is the best predictor of future performance. However, to fully understand the conditions when the skill was used, and to have a clear understanding of the candidate’s personal contribution using that skill, you need to listen for STAR responses. In this case, STAR stands for Situation-Task-Action-Result, the basic components of a complete reply to a skill-based question.

The interviewer should be sure to understand the situation (S) that existed when the skill was utilized, the task (T), objective or goal that presented itself to the candidate and needed his or her skill to resolve, then the various actions (A) that were taken by the candidate to solve the problem and finally the quantifiable result (R) that was achieved. Only when the full STAR response is provided will an interviewer know what to expect from this candidate.

Don’t ask

Lynnworth cautions to never ask the hypothetical question, such as “How would you handle a situation where initiative was important to the success of the company?” Answers to such questions provide NO information about the individual’s actual experience with the skill of interest to you or your company. In this example, the candidate could deliver a comprehensive response that is textbook in nature, covering all the “motherhood and apple pie” buzz words. Unfortunately, you will never know if this individual naturally and consistently takes initiative or not, since the context is all hypothetical. There is no past behavior upon which to make a prediction about future performance.

The better way to structure the same question is to simply phrase the question based on past behavior. For example, learning about the candidate’s natural tendency to take initiative can instead be addressed this way: “Please give me an example where you had to take initiative to solve a problem or improve a situation at work, without your boss or anyone else telling you to take action.” This type of question forces the candidate to address actual past performance, thereby offering you hard evidence of capability, experience and achievement.

If you want to find out about the candidate’s depth of this or any other skill, Lynnworth suggests, “Ask for another example, and perhaps one more.” A person who always takes initiative, will be able to offer example after example. Someone who is light on this (or any other skill) will quickly be discovered as they stumble in their communication and come up short offering examples of past experiences using this skill.

Lynnworth’s chapters on preparing for the interview include exercises for honing the technique of picking key job skills, vital for job descriptions, recruiting and screening activities prior to selecting individuals for interviews. The chapters also explain how to build a multi-interviewer strategy to double-team questions about high priority skills of interest, and how to spread the tasks among the various interviewers so that wasteful repetition can be avoided on less critical but important skills.

Tip of the Iceberg

These highlights from the chapters on interviewing are only the tip of the iceberg. Lynnworth offers simple and easy to apply tips for a wide range of success strategies for operating more effectively, managing time better, getting cooperation from others and doing so in a helpful, ethical and constructive way. Lynnworth emphasizes, “It’s not about clawing your way to the top with self-focus, but rather to embrace teamwork, reinforcement of others and value systems that provide for sustainable relationships and solid success.” His book offers an appendix with a handy summary of each chapter, plus a valuable list of his favorite books about how to implement change in individuals and organizations, effective communications and leadership.

Contact Lynnworth (http://artie.lynnworth.com/)

Also, his interactive website encourages you to “Contact Lynnworth” with questions, and to obtain a free digital worksheet that can be used to list STAR experiences (either as preparation for an interviewee, or as a scorecard for the interviewer to use while conducting the interview). He has one blank copy and one that has been filled in with sample bullet points as a guide to best use this form. Be sure to ask for both. In addition, he offers free sample resumes, one for a person with limited work experience (such as a new graduate) and one for a person ten years into a career. The sample resumes are color coded to emphasize key points that are covered in the book. Just tell him that you saw this summary in ShoestringVenture.com, request copies of his free samples, and ask questions of interest to you.

Available for live speaking events and online presentations

Lynnworth donates his time with community workshops focused on interviewing skills and resume writing. He also does student-interactive Skype sessions broadcast right into university-level classrooms (see photos on his website). So if you know of institutions or organizations which would benefit from such service, just contact him through his website to find out about his availability to assist you, your organization or institution.

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