McConnell, Chuck ArchwayPublishing (136 pp.)
$28.95 hardcover, $11.99 paperback
ISBN: 978-1-4808-1464-6; April 18, 2015 


Career-transition adviser McConnell coaches readers on how to lower their handicap in the course of job searching. 

The yips are an involuntary, disruptive case of golfing twitchiness—a stress-induced meltdown. An avid golfer, McConnell finds that sitting in the hot seat during an employment interview shares many of the same circumstantial, yip-spawning stress points. “My focus is to show you how to overcome the hazards...and address the disappointment of repeated interview failures,” he writes in an encouraging, avuncular tone, which he carries throughout this guide. His first piece of advice, couched in current lingo, is to develop a “brand identity”; that is, the singular value that one brings to the job, or one’s special quality. McConnell then valuably walks readers through the process of clarifying and honing one’s brand by focusing on core competencies, accomplishments, transferable skills, and a handful of concise success stories. When he drops a sentence such as, “Keep in mind that your candidacy must be memorable and original,” readers can rest easy knowing that the next step will be a guided tour in how to craft a memorable, original cover letter. McConnell isn’t looking to turn readers into masters at the hiring game—“No one wants to be known as an expert in looking for new employment!” he says—nor does he promise sweat-free confidence to sashay into interview rooms. Instead, he encourages readers to be prepared: neither wired so tight that their teeth crack, nor so relaxed as to appear louche. McConnell tenders simple truths (“civility and likeability are necessary assets,” at every stage of the job search, whether one’s on track or being shown the door), and hard truths (“There are no mulligans for negative initial impressions. Those mistakes will influence all that follows”). He even sells himself with a winning smile: “It will prove invaluable to work with a qualified career coach to get your campaign back on track.” 

Advice that’s sound and simple enough to ensure that one won’t shank, scuff, or bury oneself in sand at one’s next job interview. Kirkus Indie, Kirkus Media LLC, 6411 Burleson Rd., Austin, TX 78744 indie@kirkusreviews.