CNBC make it 2024-03-12 02:00:49

3 red flags recruiters look out for in job candidates: They’re how you ‘get blacklisted’

A majority of people, 95%, intend to look for a new job this year, according to a January 2024 survey by jobsite Monster. And many anticipate it will be challenging. More than half, 68% say they think it will be difficult to find one given the state of the economy.

While finding work opportunities can be challenging, there are ways to conduct yourself that could make doing so even harder.

“There’s something called validation seeking behavior, aka desperation,” says Lindsay Mustain, a former Amazon recruiter and current CEO of career coaching company Talent Paradigm. She adds that “it’s that ‘pick me’ energy that actually repels the opportunity.”

Here’s how to avoid giving it off.

Don’t apply to a company over and over

First, avoid applying to jobs in the company over and over again, especially in a short period of time.

If Mustain sees that “you’ve applied 20 times in the last two years and we’ve never hired you once,” she says, that’s a red flag. She immediately thinks, “something’s wrong with that candidate for them to have not been hired by this point.”

DON’T MISS: The ultimate guide to acing your interview and landing your dream job

Regardless of how much of a fit you might be for the job, a recruiter’s likely not going to take the time to investigate your candidacy further.

“This is how you can kind of get blacklisted,” she says. Try to limit your internal applications to a maximum of five roles that you closely align with in the company.

Don’t use LinkedIn’s ‘open to work’ banner

Another red flag for a recruiter: the “open to work” banner on LinkedIn.

Just by putting up that one signal on the site, “we already know that you need something,” says Mustain. It means that you might not be as picky when it comes to your job opportunities, that you might not be moving your career forward in a measured way that helps you build skills and get better.

“It reduces the appearance of being a high caliber candidate,” she says. Plus, it changes the dynamic in a conversation with a hiring manager. Now, they’re not trying to convince you of a great job opportunity because they want you at the company. Instead, you’re trying to convince them to consider you.

Nolan Church, CEO of talent marketplace Continuum and ex-Google recruiter, agrees. Using the banner “actually feels to a hiring manager like desperation,” he previously told CNBC Make It.

“It’s kind of like asking for a handout on the corner,” says Mustain.

Don’t show up ‘very wounded and hurt’ on social media

Finally, if you’re unemployed, don’t post your unemployment status on social media, especially if you’re inclined to do so from a place of hurt. Mustain gives the example of a post like the following:

“I just got laid off and I have two kids at home and I really need another job, like, as soon as possible. So if you could please introduce me to every person that you know that has a possible opening, I would be so grateful.”

Though sad and a cause for sympathy, people who post like statuses are “showing up very wounded and hurt,” she says. They’re “bleeding out on social media.” Ultimately, they’re showing a weakness in a similar way to people who include the “open to work” banner on their LinkedIn profiles. It’s clear they need something.

A post like that “repels people because they’re not coming from a place of strength,” says Mustain.

Instead, if you’ve been laid off and want to signal to the world that you’re looking for new opportunities, try framing the situation as a new beginning or a chance for growth and sharing concrete examples of your past contributions and successes. You can also share what you’ve learned and how your experiences have equipped you for future challenges. All of this “demonstrates adaptability and a forward-looking mindset to potential employers,” she says.

Remember, “you don’t need any job,” says Mustain. “You want a good job.”

Want to land your dream job in 2024? Take CNBC’s new online course How to Ace Your Job Interview to learn what hiring managers are really looking for, body language techniques, what to say and not to say, and the best way to talk about pay. CNBC Make It readers can save 25% with discount code 25OFF.

If you and your partner use any of these 5 phrases regularly, your relationship is stronger than most

Speaking to your partner with respect and appreciation is important, especially in times of conflict.

The most successful couples, according to psychologists, regularly express devotion, understanding, and contrition.

Here are the five phrases that couples who have a strong connection use most, according to experts.

1. “Thank you.”

John and Julie Gottman are psychologists who have studied more than 40,000 couples in search of answering the question: What makes love last?

The one phrase they say all successful couples use often is “thank you.”

“A thriving relationship requires an enthusiastic culture of appreciation, where we’re as good at noticing the things our partners are doing right as we are at noticing what they’re doing wrong,” they wrote for CNBC Make It.

This is especially true for small, everyday acts, they say.

“Tell them why that small thing is a big deal to you: ‘Thank you for making the coffee every morning. I love waking up to the smell of it and the sounds of you in the kitchen. It just makes me start the day off right,’” they say.

Don’t miss: 2 phrases to use to be a more successful employee or manager—and 2 to avoid, according to leadership coaches, psychologists

2. “Help me understand this.”

Harvard psychologist Cortney Warren says successful couples don’t avoid conflict, they just better navigate it.

We often assume we know what our partner is saying when in reality they might be expressing something more nuanced or totally different.

“If your partner reacts to a situation in a way that you don’t understand, telling them that you want to know them better is key to resolving conflict and bonding at a deeper level,” Warren wrote for CNBC Make It.

3. “I can forgive you. Can you forgive me?”

When you’re in the heat of an argument or at the end of one it can be hard to express forgiveness. Do it anyways, Warren says.

“Studies have shown that couples who practice forgiveness are more likely to enjoy longer, more satisfying relationships,” she says.

4. “I am committed to you.”

“Being in a relationship is a choice,” Warren says. “Reassuring your partner that you’re still choosing to be with them and to work through challenges will help create a sense of safety and stability.”

This might seem obvious, but communicating your promise to one another can help you and your partner feel validated.

5. “I like you.”

“The healthiest couples don’t just love each other, they like each other, too,” Warren says. “Loving someone is an intense feeling of affection; liking is about seeing them for who they are and acknowledging the attributes you enjoy about them.”

Even if you and your partner aren’t arguing, remind them that you like them.

Want to make extra money outside of your day job? Sign up for CNBC’s new online course How to Earn Passive Income Online to learn about common passive income streams, tips to get started and real-life success stories. Register today and save 50% with discount code EARLYBIRD.

Ex-Amazon engineers lose ‘Shark Tank’ deal off 1 blunder: ‘That’s the biggest mistake startups make’

After leaving engineering jobs at Amazon three years ago, Brett Skaloud and Jeff Feiereisen built a showerhead startup with social media virality, thousands of customers and $5 million in projected annual revenue.

They still couldn’t land a deal on Friday’s episode of ABC’s “Shark Tank” due to making what billionaire investor Mark Cuban referred to as “the biggest mistake startups make”: trying to grow their brand too quickly.

Skaloud and Feiereisen co-founded Boona, a Seattle-based company that makes a $249 showerhead called the “Tandem.” It attaches to most standard extant showers, turning them into couples’ showers by adding a new stream of water on the opposite wall.

On the show, they asked for $400,000 in exchange for 10% of their startup — saying they wanted to expand Boona past the Tandem, into additional product lines and revenue streams.

“We want to build a brand,” Feiereisen said. “We have a lot of [intellectual property] around this product, but we’re not banking the business on it. I mean, the next obvious opportunity for us is just the handhelds.”

The statement raised a red flag for at least a couple of the show’s investor judges.

“I don’t buy it as a company yet, I see it as a very interesting innovation as a product,” said Kevin O’Leary. “Some of the greatest deals in ‘Shark Tank’ history [are] when the entrepreneur focused on that one application and maxed it out.”

“That’s our focus right now,” Skaloud responded.

“Well, I’m not sure. You were telling me about building a business, other SKUs, a brand strategy, which scares me,” O’Leary said.

Cuban backed up O’Leary, adding that when startups make this mistake, “they want to be a brand, as opposed to just executing on selling their product. [But] what builds a brand is your execution.”

“That’s why for us, the absolute focus is definitely on Tandem. And if we do create new products, it’s to support Tandem,” Feiereisen said, trying to reel investors back in.

‘You came to the advice tank’

At the time of filming, Skaloud and Feiereisen projected $1.7 million in annual revenue by the end of that year, and $5 million the following year. Boona had 5,000 customers, a mailing list of 40,000 people and a Kickstarter campaign that garnered $774,000, the duo added.

Three of the investors — Barbara Corcoran, Robert Herjavec and Lori Greiner — dropped out quickly.

“I can’t relate to the product at all for two reasons. I’m a bather and I love high [water pressure], and I’m concerned about you cutting the pressure in half,” said Corcoran. “Secondly, I just couldn’t imagine getting into a shower with my husband Bill.”

This left Cuban and O’Leary.

“Guys, I think [the Tandem] is just going to be a cash-generating machine, and the biggest mistake you could make would be to try to grow too fast,” Cuban reiterated. “Just take the money [customers] are throwing at you. But that’s not conducive to an investor because if it’s $400,000 for 10%, you have to generate $4 million in after-tax profits just for me to get my money back … I’m out.”

O’Leary offered the duo $400,000 with a $40 royalty per unit until he got $1.2 million back, plus a 10% equity stake — or $400,000 to become their third partner with a 33.3% equity stake. He retracted both offers after Skaloud and Feiereisen spent too much time answering questions posed by Cuban.

“You’ve got to make a decision,” he said. “You can’t do it, that tells me you’re not sharp enough … You came to the advice tank.”

The pair left the show empty-handed, but appreciative of the feedback they received.

“We would have loved to have gotten a deal, but I think their logic makes sense and I’m excited to continue building this business exactly as per their advice,” Feiereisen said.

Disclosure: CNBC owns the exclusive off-network cable rights to “Shark Tank.”

Want to make extra money outside of your day job? Sign up for CNBC’s new online course How to Earn Passive Income Online to learn about common passive income streams, tips to get started and real-life success stories. Register today and save 50% with discount code EARLYBIRD.

5 ways to help your kids be more successful than most—including one ‘many parents fail to teach’

Parents regularly worry about how their children will navigate the world as adults. Will they grow up to be happy and well-adjusted? Will they get a good job and live comfortably?

Every child is different, and everyone develops at their own pace. But some strategies are proven to be more effective than others, when it comes to raising successful children.

Here are five ways parents can help set their kids up for future success, according to psychologists and other parenting experts.

Prioritize self-confidence over self-esteem

You might use “self-confidence” and “self-esteem” interchangeably. But when it comes to raising a successful child, one is more important than the other, educational psychologist Michele Borba wrote for CNBC Make It in 2022.

Self-esteem represents how we view ourselves overall. Self-confidence is a reflection of how confident we are in our own abilities in a given situation. The two concepts are related, but research shows that self-confidence is a better indicator of future success, because it helps firm kids’ beliefs that their skills and efforts will lead to strong outcomes — like getting good grades or performing well in athletics.

“Real self-confidence is an outcome of doing well, facing obstacles, creating solutions and snapping back on your own,” Borba wrote.

Parents can best boost their child’s self-confidence by stepping back and allowing them to succeed or fail on their own, instead of hovering and trying to fix their kid’s problems for them, Borba noted. Doing so can help them learn to dust themselves off and try again if they fail, and believe that they’ll ultimately succeed.

Teach self-control

Self-control helps determine future success, research shows. When kids learn to ignore unnecessary distractions and control their own emotions and behavior, they typically grow up to be smarter and more motivated, according to a decades-long study by researchers at New Zealand’s University of Otago.

“Becoming indistractable is the most important skill for the 21st century — and it’s one that many parents fail to teach their kids,” author and psychology expert Nir Eyal wrote for Make It in 2019.

Eyal recommends starting early. Toddlers can begin to understand the concept of time, which means parents can start explaining the importance of budgeting time to focus on important developmental activities. Kids can even learn self-control through play, including games like freeze tag and “red light, green light.”

Give them autonomy

The ability to self-motivate is one of the two important traits that can help kids grow into successful adults, child psychologist Dr. Tovah Klein told Make It last year. (The other? Confidence.)

Establish expectations for your child, with their input, when it comes to everyday actions like getting themselves ready for school, choosing after-school activities and doing their chores, bestselling author and parenting expert Esther Wojcicki recommends.

“The more you trust your children to do things on their own, the more empowered they’ll be,” Wojcicki wrote for Make It in 2022.

Eyal also suggested using tactics like making “effort pacts” with their kids, where they commit to specific limits on tempting distractions — like a one-hour daily limit on screen time.

Don’t stress over perfection

Wojcicki raised three successful children — a doctor and two high-profile CEOs — but she never demanded perfection from them. That made a big difference, she noted.

Give your children room to fail, treating their mistakes and setbacks with empathy rather than scorn, to help them maintain confidence while learning to view failures as learning opportunities, she advised.

“Mastery means doing something as many times as it takes to get it right … It was the learning and the hard work that I wanted to reward, not getting it right the first time,” she wrote.

Perfectionism doesn’t make your child more likely to succeed in the future, and it can contribute to mental health issues like anxiety and low self-esteem, research shows.

You can teach your kids to reframe how they think about making mistakes by openly discussing errors you’ve made, how you’ve solved problems and what you learned in the process, Bryant University psychology professor Allison Butler told Make It in January.

Talk about financial literacy

It’s never too early to teach your kids about money: how to earn it, spend it wisely and save it while planning for the future. Most U.S. students don’t learn those lessons in school, which can cost them money as adults, according to a 2023 survey by the National Financial Educator’s Council.

Parenting expert Margot Machol Bisnow interviewed the parents of 70 highly accomplished adults for her 2022 book, “Raising an Entrepreneur: How to Help Your Children Achieve Their Dreams.” Teaching financial literacy was a common thread for those parents, she found.

“Although the parents I spoke to never pushed their kids towards pursuing a high-paying job, all of them made an effort to teach their kids about money in one form or another,” Bisnow wrote for Make It in 2022. You could give kids an allowance and insist they save up their own money to spend on items they want, but don’t necessarily need, like a new pair of roller skates, she noted.

You can also try talking to your kids about money in practical, “matter of fact” ways, like discussing how much everyday items cost, says Alexa von Tobel, the Harvard-trained investor and founder of online financial advisory LearnVest.

Teach your kids that money is no more than “a tool to help you live the life you want to,” von Tobel told Make It last month. “Money is not meant to be worshipped. And it’s not meant to be ignored.” 

Want to land your dream job in 2024? Take CNBC’s new online course How to Ace Your Job Interview to learn what hiring managers are really looking for, body language techniques, what to say and not to say, and the best way to talk about pay. CNBC Make It readers can save 25% with discount code 25OFF.

Plus, sign up for CNBC Make It’s newsletter to get tips and tricks for success at work, with money and in life.

The top 10 metro areas where homes are selling the fastest—cities in Florida didn’t make the list

Creditnews Research, an independent research house, released its new ranking of the fastest-selling housing markets in the U.S.

The report analyzed the top 100 largest metros in the U.S. by population to determine the country’s fastest-selling housing markets and used data sourced from Zillow to establish the number of days before a listing goes into sale-pending status.

To do a pre-Covid versus 2024 comparison, the study used metrics from January 2020 to January 2024.

All of the top 10 cities on the list are on the East Coast and in the Midwest. Five of the top 10 fastest-selling metros were also among the top areas that lost the most per-capita housing inventory since the beginning of the pandemic.

Florida had one of the strongest housing markets during the pandemic, according to CNBC’s America’s Top States for Business ranking, but not a single city in the state ranked in Creditnews Research’s top 10. It’s a signal that the housing market in the Sunshine State isn’t what it used to be.

No. 1 fastest-selling housing market: Hartford, Connecticut

As of January 2024, the fastest-selling housing market in the U.S. is Hartford, Connecticut.

The metro area’s median “days-to-pending” was eight days, down from 52 days in January 2020. This was the biggest percentage drop (-84.62%) of all the metros in the study. The state also had the second-biggest decline in per-capita housing inventory (-67.20%) since 2020.

Hartford’s cost of living is 6% higher than the national average, while housing expenses are 2% lower, according to PayScale.

Despite lower housing costs, the average amount that residents pay in utilities in Hartford is 26% higher than the national average, and groceries are 2% higher.

The average monthly rent in Hartford is $1,501, while home prices are around $429,687, according to RentCafe.

In 2023, Hartford was one of’s top 10 markets of the year. It is known as the world’s insurance capital because it is home to the headquarters of more than 100 insurance companies.

Top 10 fastest-selling housing markets

  1. Hartford, Conn.
  2. Rochester, N.Y.
  3. Syracuse, N.Y.
  4. Harrisburg, Penn.
  5. Richmond, Va.
  6. Grand Rapids, Mich.
  7. New Haven, Conn.
  8. Boston, Mass.
  9. Columbus, Ohio
  10. Worcester, Mass.

Rochester, New York, has the second fastest-selling housing market in the U.S., according to Creditnews Research.

The city, located in upstate New York, has a median days-to-pending of nine days. The nine days represent a decline of 73.53% compared to January 2020. Rochester also had the fifth-largest percentage drop in inventory per capita compared to pre-covid.

Unlike New York City, the cost of living in Rochester, NY, is 21% lower than the state average and the same as the national average, according to RentCafe.

Rochester is 24.4% less expensive than New York City, and the average Rochester home value is $230,034, up 9.4% over the past year, according to Zillow.

Want to make extra money outside of your day job? Sign up for CNBC’s new online course How to Earn Passive Income Online to learn about common passive income streams, tips to get started and real-life success stories. Register today and save 50% with discount code EARLYBIRD.

Plus, sign up for CNBC Make It’s newsletter to get tips and tricks for success at work, with money and in life.