Been Unemployed a Long Time? You Can Turn It Around


It would be an understatement to say that the economy has been in terrible shape the last number of years. Statistically, it would be worse, except for the millions who have simply given up and walked away from full time employment. I have close friends who are brilliant, but haven’t worked in more than two years. I happen to live and work in Hollywood – an economy built on “freelance” talent. But even there, those who haven’t had a job in years are perceived as unemployable.  What’s the answer?  

The 5 People I’ll Never Hire Again

Phil on set

Working with our team at Cooke Pictures, I’ve produced hundreds of film and video projects over the years, and in the process hired thousands of people. I’ve worked on every continent, and about 50 countries. After all that experience hiring and sometimes firing, these are the five types of people – on a film set or in the office – I will never hire again:

Stop Looking for a Job


If you’re a frustrated job hunter – or know someone who is – then forward this column I wrote recently for Fox News.  It’s titled:  Stop Looking for a Job and Start Looking for Your One Big Thing.  From the response it’s getting, it’s changing a lot of people’s thinking about how to position themselves for the next stage in their career.


Stop Trying to Change the World


I’ve been guilty of this as much as anyone – encouraging people to “change the world.” It’s true that some people leave that kind of legacy, but for most of us, just changing OUR world is enough. I know too many people who are focused on the lofty goal of changing the world, but their marriage is in shambles, their kids are miserable, or they are failing at their job. Changing the world is a noble goal, but not at the expense of

Six Principles Worth Remembering At Work


While working on a project with a mutual client, branding strategist Dawn Nicole Baldwin gave the organization’s Communications Director some excellent advice.  Because it was so relevant to the situation many of us are in, I thought it worth sharing.  Whatever project you’re working on, client you’re working with, or boss you’re working for, these are important principles to remember:

Meeting Expectations


One of the most difficult challenges I face with clients is managing their expectations. It happens in a million ways. Sometimes they don’t have all the information, other times their past experience colors the relationship, or they simply don’t have the experience to evaluate success. Whatever the cause, it’s up to you to manage the outcome. Why? 

Why You Need to Control the Process


After speaking to audiences, sometimes during the Q&A, someone will ask me, “What’s the biggest mistake you’ve made in your career?”  There are probably many, but here’s one of the biggest:  I didn’t control the process.  I’m a people pleaser.  I want to make everyone happy, and be liked.  That’s great when it comes to parties, but a disaster when it comes to a career.  The bottom line is that to avoid ruffling feathers, I’ve settled for less than I should have.  From directing actors, to managing teams, to writing books – I’ve given in when I should have

Be Careful When Employees Recommend People for Jobs at Your Organization


A new study called “Tainted Recommendations: The Social Comparison Bias” reports that when an employee recommends someone to hire or promote, they might be hurting your company in order to boost their self-esteem.  The study found that employees tend to recommend people who they know can’t outperform them at tasks they feel they are good at doing.  It was the same thing with picking partners for team projects.  The majority picked a partner who wouldn’t