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Press Release: Grad CareerFestival designed to help unemployed Grads land jobs quickly

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                                                                       Press Release

Assegid Habtewold is a Featured Presenter in the Grad CareerFestival Designed to Help Unemployed Grads Land Jobs Quicker!

Free Grad Career/Festival scheduled for June 26th-29th from 11 am – 7 pm daily (EST) seeks to help college grads land a job 2.4 months quicker! 36 hours of career advice!


Silver Spring, MD, May 14, 2018 (Success Pathways Press) With nearly two million students graduating from college this summer, it’s not surprising that it will take the average graduate 7.4 months to find employment.   While some of that time is a result of the economy not being able to absorb so many graduates at one time, much of it is a result of the fact that college grads simply do not know how to look for a job!

The Grad CareerFestival is designed to give graduates the fundamental skills they will need in their first professional job search. The massive four-day event will introduce graduates to 36 of the nation’s top career authors and a dozen career coaches, hiring managers, and career experts who will offer strategies on how to launch and lead successful careers. The event has been organized into four tracks:

  • Career Management
  • Job Search
  • Soft Skills
  • Post-Graduation

According to Assegid Habtewold, author of Soft Skills That Make or Break Your Success, and a featured presenter in the Grad CareerFestival:

“Research by the National Association of Colleges and Employers has shown nearly 61 percent of graduating seniors either NEVER go to the career center or will only visit once or twice. It’s no wonder then that the average grad thinks the proper way to look for a job is to load their resume onto 100 websites and wait for someone to contact them!   We know, given the right knowledge and skills we can help grads find jobs quicker!”

Each author is offering three tips based on their niche area of expertise. Graduates will learn relevant, contemporary strategies to create an elevator pitch, build their online brand, use social media to land a job, as well as learn traditional networking, resume, interviewing, and job search techniques. Authors will share the importance of creating a career plan, managing their career, and staying current on job search strategies.   The authors will give a 25-30 minute presentation on their area of expertise and then take 10-15 minutes of questions.

Time has been set aside to introduce graduates to innovative online career tools designed to improve their resumes, as well as their interviewing, networking and job search skills. Students and grads will also hear from experts who will give insights how to refinance student loans, manage their credit score, and their personal finances.

According to Assegid Habtewold,

“I’m concerned that college graduates are not receiving the knowledge and skills they will need for the dozen job searches they are expected to have by the time they turn 38 years old.   We are excited about the possibilities of putting thousands of dollars in the pockets of graduates by giving them simple insights on how they can not only find a job quicker but help them launch and lead successful careers!”

The cost to participate in all 36 hours of live career presentations is $67. However, students and graduates that register using the code – Habtewold – will get free access to the four-day event. It’s Assegid Habtewold’s graduation gift to graduates!

Parents, guardians, friends, or extended families are encouraged to share this opportunity with the graduate(s) they know!

Students and graduates can register at:


Participation is limited.

The Grad CareerFestival is produced by TalentMarks, a nationally recognized firm that provides scalable career and professional development programming to career centers, and alumni associations. Participation is limited! http://www.gradcareerfestival.com

Author Info:

Assegid Habtewold

Author, Soft Skills That Make or Break Your Success

Web: www.successpws.com

Email: assegid@successpws.com

Phone: 703-895-4551

LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/in/assegidhabtewold

Twitter: https://twitter.com/assegid



For details and interviews, contact phyllis@talentmarks.com 800-849-1762 x 205

Thomas Edison attained purpose-oriented greatness (excerpt)

…Think about those great ones you admire. Write down the names of five of your great ones. If you take time and reflect, you could be able to find out, at least, two things in common. They:

  • Discovered their unique purpose, and
  • Willing to die for the purpose they discovered.

Let me quickly give you some diverse examples of great ones who attained purpose-oriented greatness.

2. Thomas Edison

Thomas Edison is a household name. He is known around the world for his invention of the light bulb. “Everyone agrees that he [Thomas Edison] was the greatest inventive genius who ever lived.”[i] Of course, including a patent for his Incandescing Electric Lamp, Edison held “more than 1, 000 patents for his inventions.”[ii]

Unlike Moses, Edison never claimed that God sent him to light up the world nor did he publicly declare that it was his unique purpose. Nonetheless, he had a sense of mission. While humanity was satisfied with the daylight of the sun during the daytime, and the moonlight at night, Edison burdened to brighten the world. More than any of his other inventions, Edison took the light bulb seriously as if his life was depended on it. He didn’t give up even if he failed over 1, 000 times.

Edison’s greatness was based on his invention of the light bulb. He went all-in. Repetitive failures didn’t stop him. He gave it his best. He didn’t quit until he brought the modern light bulb to the world. He achieved a purpose-oriented greatness and left a legacy that outlived him…

[i] Hart (1998). p. 190.

[ii] Biography.com (2017). Thomas Edison Biography. Retrieved on August 16, 2017, from https://www.biography.com/people/thomas-edison-9284349

This excerpt is taken from ‘The Highest Level of Greatness’ book pages 36 – 39.

If you would like to read more about discovering and pursuing purpose, check out the following excerpts:

1. What I found out in my conversations concerning purpose: http://successpws.com/?p=2701
2. The four grand truth about purpose: http://successpws.com/?p=2703
3. My conversation with Ken about purpose-oriented lifestyle: http://successpws.com/?p=2707
4. About my little life and the path I have followed in the discovery and pursuit of my purpose: http://successpws.com/?p=2710
5. Is your organization purpose-oriented: http://successpws.com/?p=2712

Contact the author if you’re interested him to speak at one of your future events, contact us. Tel: 703-895-4551 or email us @ assegid@successpws.com

In order to get updates, future excerpts, and related events, follow us on social media by going to the top right corner of this page. You may also subscribe to our YouTube channel to get alerts when we upload video clips. You may also subscribe to our newsletter for free:

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Two presentations on the latest 2 books on Nov 25th

I’ll be speaking twice for 15 minutes each on Nov 25, 2017, at Residence Inn Springfield (6412 Backlick Rd, Springfield, VA 22150) based on my book Soft Skills That Make or Break Your Success. The theme of the presentation is ‘Present Like a Pro’.

Many studies have found that public speaking is the number one fear amongst most people, outranking flying, snakes, insects, and even death. Ironically, it is also one of the skills that can make or break a person’s career, business, and leadership. While public speaking can be a nerve-wracking experience, it can be extremely beneficial to boost our confidence and in turn succeed in our career, social engagements, and businesses. Public speaking is a life skill, which we all need to develop. Whether speaking in front of groups, conducting meetings, speaking at a conference, lecturing for the first time, or addressing the media, improving our presentation skill empowers us to deliver our message with confidence, capture the attention of our audience, increase our credibility, influence our audience and win them over our side, and create impact. In his presentation ‘Speak Like a pro’, which is taken from his book ‘Soft Skills That Make or Break Your Success’, Assegid Habtewold will give you great tips and approaches that will make speaking in public less terrifying and more enjoyable.

For details such as location and where to get tickets, check out the attached flyer…

Note: I’m not sure whether some copies of my latest book ‘The Highest Level of Greatness‘ will be available but I’ll make sure to bring some copies of ‘Soft Skills That Make or Break Your Success’. By the way, in this holiday season, this book is a great gift to your professional, community leader, and business owner friends, relatives, and colleagues. It is a small investment that will definitely transform their lives, career, and business…


Every creation has a unique purpose- You too!

Below is an excerpt from my upcoming book:

“…The universe is a purposeful one. Everything in this universe was created for a specific reason. That was why Sir John Templeton asked cynically, Would it not be strange if a universe without purpose accidentally created humans who are so obsessed with purpose?” There is nothing in this finely tuned universe that exists without a definite purpose.

Each individual is created with a unique purpose to manifest greatness. However, this greatness is tied with his unique purpose. One’s true greatness, therefore, should begin by admitting this fact and taking responsibility to discover and pursue his unique purpose.

Filipino nationalist and polymath Jose Rizal took responsibility when he said, “As God has not made anything useless in this world, as all beings fulfill obligations or a role in the sublime drama of Creation, I cannot exempt from this duty.” He believed, “And small though it be, I too have a mission to fill, as for example: alleviating the sufferings of my fellowmen.” You too; what so ever small you may think your reason for existence, you have a unique place in the universe. You were born for a specific purpose. Humanity in particular, and the universe at large won’t be complete without you playing your unique part. Your generation won’t be fulfilled without you pursuing and fulfilling the reason for your existence.

If in case you’re skeptical about this ‘everything has a unique purpose’ thing, let me help you a little. Within every creation, there is a coded purpose. Some of the codes are easy to decode, others aren’t. If we don’t know the very reason why a thing exists doesn’t nullify its original purpose. If we haven’t yet known the very purpose of a thing, it only shows our inability to discover it as of yet. We’re not yet able to decode its reason for existence. That is it!

The same is true if you’ve not yet discovered your purpose. Don’t give up. Make a decision today to discover your purpose. Otherwise, the alternative is not pretty. Failure to identify the reason for your existence leads to insignificance, not to greatness…”

Taken from the book ‘The Highest Level of Greatness’. You can read more about the book by click here…

To read the press release, click here…

If you would like to check out the Table of Content, click here…

You can order the Kindle and Print versions of the book from Amazon.

Contact the author if you’re interested him to speak at one of your future events. Tel: 703-895-4551 or email us @ assegid@successpws.com

In order to get updates, future excerpts, and related events, follow us on social media by going to the top right corner of this page. You may also subscribe to our YouTube channel to get alerts when we upload video clips. You may also subscribe to our newsletter for free:

Subscribe for free to receive our monthly newsletter…

2- Hour Workshop on ‘Present like a pro’

I joined Toastmasters (TM) in 2009. I benefited tremendously from this outstanding organization and its leadership. If you saw me speak back then, you wouldn’t believe it’s now that the same guy 🙂 Because of TM and my mentors, I’ve come a long way. Not only I’m now speaking well, I coach supervisors and managers to have high impact communication from the stage.

On Nov 9th, I’m going to facilitate a 2-hour workshop entitled ‘Present like a pro’. It’s a very practical workshop where I’m going to share:

  • Latest facts and statistics,
  • Demonstrations,
  • Video clips, and
  • Practicing opportunities for a few volunteers who would like to practice and get feedback to take their presentation ability to the next level.

Click this link to watch this < 3 min video clip to learn the learning objectives of a one-day workshop that I provide to my clients on the same theme. The contents of this 2- Hour workshop are taken from this workshop.

If you are available that day, and if you live and work in Rockville area, you should attend this Joint Open House organized by five Toastmasters clubs in the area.

One stone two birds:

  1. You learn how to present like a pro plus
  2. Hear from TM’s leadership, and ask questions so that you could be able to join one of the clubs where you may practice what you are going to learn that day.

Don’t miss this opportunity! For more info, check the attached flyer.

I’ll also make some copies of my latest book ‘Soft Skills That Make or Break Your Success’ available…

Aug 26- Empower the Community Weekend- Presentation on Soft Skills

On August 26, 2017, I’m scheduled to present on soft skills twice (@1: 30 pm and 3: 30 pm) for 30 minutes each on soft skills. This is a great event filled with outstanding speakers and jam-packed programs. If you’re in the metro area, don’t miss it. For detail including to purchase your ticket, schedule, location, and so on., visit www.empowercw.com


Upcoming Events on Soft Skills:

  1. Guest FacilitatorOrganizer: 21st C Community. Event: Weekly Career Success Webinars. Dates: August 16, 23, and 30, 2017. Time: 9 – 10 pm EST. To sign-up and attend the webinars, go to this page: https://icattnet.adobeconnect.com/r1ftzpeisab/The audio recording of August 16, 2017, webinar on soft skills. Part 2 is on Aug 23 @ 9 pm EST: Part I- Increasing Self-awareness
  2. Facilitating a 2-day workshopOrganizer: Sholla Corporation. Event: 2-day boot camp style intensive workshop. Date: Saturday and Sunday, September 2 – 3, 2017. Time: 9 – 5 pm. Place: For more, check out this link: http://successpws.com/?page_id=2409


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Report on August 11th conference

The Skilled Immigrants annual conference in Alexandria on August 11th was very successful.

The event was organized by A Consortium of Northern Virginia Workforce Development Organizations.

As part of the first panel, I shared my experience as an immigrant, and the soft skills necessary for immigrants to succeed in the US.

A couple of sponsors donated over 35 Soft Skills That Make or Break Your Success book to participants.

2-Day Boot Camp Style Intensive Workshop

Sholla presents a boot camp style 2-day intensive workshop based on the newly published book entitled ‘Soft Skills That Make or Break Your Success: 12 soft skills to master self, get along with, and lead others successfully’. Here is a link to read the synopsis of the book, press release, and to download the first part and the conclusion of the book for free: http://successpws.com/?page_id=2254

Learning Objectives:

This workshop gives you the necessary insights, processes, and tools to develop your soft skills that empower you to take your life, career, and business to the next level. The workshop has five over-arching objectives. At the end of the course, participants will be able to:

  • Understand the vital roles soft skills play in mastering self, getting along with and leading others
  • Discover the soft skills necessary to succeed in managerial positions
  • Assess which soft skills have been missing that deterred them from attaining personal mastery, getting along with, and leading others successfully
  • Identify tools, processes, and approaches that enable them to improve their soft skills that equip them to master self, get along with, and lead others
  • Develop action plans to practice what they learned right away when they return to the workplace


Course outline:

Part I: Soft skills to master self:

Soft Skill 1: Increasing self-awareness

Soft Skill 2: Regulating Emotions Wittingly

Soft Skill 3: Managing Time and Energy Wisely

Soft Skill 4: Solving Problems & Making Right Decisions


Part II: Soft skills to get along with others successfully:

Soft Skill 5: Playing Teamwork

Soft Skill 6: Communicating Effectively

Soft Skill 7: Promoting Diversity & Embracing Inclusiveness

Soft Skill 8: Turning Conflicts into Opportunities


Part III: Soft skills to lead others successfully:

Soft Skill 9: Motivating Others to Aim High

Soft Skill 10: Coaching & Mentoring to Empower Others

Soft Skill 11: Negotiating With Others for Win-Win Deals

Soft Skill 12: Leading Others Through Change Smoothly


About the author and Trainer of this workshop

Assegid (AZ) Habtewold wrote three books including his latest book entitled ‘Soft Skills That Make or Break Your Success’. He has been serving some Government agencies [National Institutes of Health (NIH), General Services Administration (GSA), US Department of Agriculture (USDA), Forest Services, and National Cancer Institute], Public Schools, Fuji Films, Everis, Westat, Per Scholas, and so on. AZ has also been working with world-class management consulting companies such as CI International and ICATT Consulting. He has been facilitating workshops on the 12 themes incorporated in his third book. He also has been working as a contractor to provide public seminars and on-site workshops for seminar companies such as SkillPath, and National Seminars. AZ has the following degrees: Doctor of Strategic Leadership, Master’s in Computer Science, and Doctor of Veterinary Medicine. He has over 20 years hands on leadership experience that began as a youth and student leader. He has been providing training and facilitating workshops for more than nine years in the US. AZ came to the US in 2005, is a US citizen, and lives in Silver Spring, MD.



  1. We have limited seats. 20 participants for the first batch. First come, first served.
  2. Each participant gets a copy of the book for free.
  3. Handouts will be sent once you register for the boot camp.

If you may have any question or need explanation, please call at 703-895-4551 or 240-429-1445 Email: info@sholla.com

To register, go to Eventbrite: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/2-day-intensive-workshop-on-the-top-12-soft-skills-tickets-36813945502

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The Pope of Soft Skills

On August 4th, 2017, just before facilitating a workshop based on my new book at Veterans Plaza, Silver Spring MD

If you’re wondering why I’m called the Pope of Soft Skills, check this brief video clip from yesterday’s presentation at Veterans Plaza  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pVZlforyS2g

My next presentation is going to be on August 11th, 2017 in Alexandria VA. The event is organized by A Consortium of Northern Virginia Workforce Development Organizations.

Theme: Workforce Conference: Rebuilding Your Professional Career in the US’.

This is especially important if you’re an immigrant who would like to take your career to the next level. This kind of opportunity comes once in awhile. Use the opportunity to jumpstart your new career you’ve been dreaming to launch for a very long period of time. If you intend to revitalize, relaunch, rebuild, and/or make a career change, this conference equips you with the necessary info, tips, and guidances.

If you know someone from your family, among your friends, and colleagues who may benefit from this conference, please inform them to attend this vital event.

Don’t quote me 🙂 I heard that some companies have already ordered my book to give to participants. I’m not yet sure how many copies. If I were you, I’d go there early and get a copy. This is a fantastic book so use the opportunity, of course, to hear many great speakers, and it doesn’t hurt to get a great book for free. 

To learn more about the time, place, and most importantly to register, please check out this link: http://successpws.com/?p=2393

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Resume writing and interviewing skills are overrated

Both resume writing and interviewing skills are critical. In the 21st C, nonetheless, they are overrated. I’ll show you why, and what to do about it.

Simply put, resumes let you circumvent the automated gatekeeper, also known as soulless automated resume rejecters. Nowadays, corporations use software to screen candidates. Recruiters don’t read thousands and hundreds of resumes any longer. They depend on resume screening software to short list candidates. In modern days workplace, your resume can only allow you to dodge resume robots. That is it! No more, no less.

Once you’re in front of a recruiter (s), it’s another kind of game. You may think that you can get into the door if you just ‘perform’ and impress the interviewers. Bless their hearts. Many well-meaning organizations ‘prep’ job seekers on interviewing skills. They prepare them on the kinds of questions recruiters may ask, how to dress, smile, hand shake, and respond to some of the commonly known challenging questions.

These ‘crash courses’ are aimed at circumventing recruiters, the second layer gatekeepers. I must admit. They sometimes work, especial if the recruiters are novices. But, many of these prep classes are insufficient to equip job seekers to win seasoned recruiters their side. These classes are incapable of helping candidates continue to succeed once they set their feet in.

Speaking of experienced recruiters, they are fake proofs. They use behavioral questions. They don’t just ask the usual yes or no questions that are taught in interviewing skills crash courses. What do you think will be the response of a candidate if a rookie recruiter asks, “Are you a hard working person?” “Do you get along with others?”, and other similar questions? The candidate will definitely say a resounding Yes to each question. She may even roll her eyes and use some nonverbal cues as if to say why you even asking me these questions.

Don’t miss read me here. You need a killer resume. You need to prepare for interviews. No short cut! But, your attitude shouldn’t be to fake it until you make it. Be genuine to know the organization, its mission, corporate values, the job description you are applying for, and so on. Most importantly, be yourself. I like Judy Garland’s advice, “Always be a first rate version of yourself and not a second rate version of someone else.”

Remember this. You’re not for sale. You too are also choosing whether to work for that company or not. Go there not just to be selected, to pick too. Go there to understand the working environment, the company’s culture, and so on. You may not want to work for that company if your values collide with theirs. If the corporate culture doesn’t allow you to flourish, why accepting the job knowing that you wither away and suffer?

That being said; go past preparing for interviews. Aim beyond bypassing the two layer gatekeepers. Have well-developed technical skills and know-hows to impress the domain expert- the hiring manager.

Above all, develop your soft skills proactively. Otherwise, even if you’re hardworking, your technical skills off chart and a nice person, your body languages, eye contacts, demeanor, energy level, communication approaches, and interactions with recruiters may send wrong messages, and you may not be selected regardless of your superb hard skills, hard working ethics, and excellent character.

Knowingly or unknowingly, many recruiters make the hiring decision within the first 3 – 4 seconds. As you walk in to greet and shake hand with the recruiter, she is gathering lots of data using her senses. With that brief first impression, she makes her mind to hire or not to hire you. That is why people say first impressions last.

You may wonder why? It’s simple. The brain processes a vast amount of data within a few seconds and reaches conclusions. That is how our brain is wired to function. It’s helping us. It tries to make our life easier. Most of the time, consciously or subconsciously, we side with our brain without questioning its hasty conclusions, and in turn, take actions.

Yes, we need our brain’s super computing power. Unless we’re mindful, however, it could cause us make decisions based on inadequate data and some unconscious biases. And, recruiters are not exceptional. They may over depend on their brain and intuitions. They may not be aware that anything they do after that first impression hiring decision is to justify their initial choice. And the initial first impression could be flawed.

Whenever I sit in a panel to screen candidates, I make sure that I use behavioral questions. I’m a human being. I’m aware that I possess a mighty brain. It processes the data that are gathered through my senses within the first 3 – 4 seconds. Based on my past experience, core values, and what I see, feel, intuit, touch, and hear right there, I may climb a virtual ladder in my mind to quickly reach a conclusion. Since I know how the brain works; however, I don’t immediately buy into its hasty conclusion and suggestions. I dig further. I use scenario-based questions. You recruiter may not take these steps. He may totally depend on his brains suggestions.

Let me be clear here by giving you a simple example. Sometimes, you meet someone for the first time and within the first few seconds, without knowing the very reason why you trust that person. You start to share your info, give your phone number, and even take the person with you to introduce him/her to your family and to have lunch or dinner. On the other hand, occasionally, you may meet someone for the first time. You cannot put your finger on it, but somehow you mistrust that person. It doesn’t matter whether this person is the world’s number one trustworthy person. Your brain, be unknown to you, climbed that virtual ladder in your mind and reached a swift conclusion.

Recruiters are humans like you and I. Unless they have self-awareness and conscious about how the brain works, they too are victims of their own brain. And therefore, they may reject the right person and favor the wrong one based on limited data within the first few seconds. Your job is to be the right person plus get selected, and this takes well-developed soft skills.

Steve Jobs of Apple used to create scenarios to select the right candidates who fit the corporate culture of Apple. Of course, some of his screening approaches were too risky, and I’m not here suggesting using all of his methods. For instance, he used to ask weird questions and put his bare feet on the table in front of candidates to watch how they would react. He was trying to figure out whether these candidates function well in a casual, no holds barred environment at Apple.

If your desire is to circumvent the automated gatekeeper, yes, have a great resume. To bypass recruiters work on your interview skills. Don’t also forget that many companies put you in front of a domain expert to test your technical skills before they let you in based on your resume and performance during the interview. In that case, you need to have your technical expertise handy to impress the domain expert. Still, your technical skills cannot guarantee your ultimate success; they qualify you to get the job, to set your feet in. That is it!

Once you’re in, if you want to flourish and continually succeed in that organization, you need well-developed soft skills. Research conducted by Harvard University, the Carnegie Foundation, and Stanford Research Center revealed, “85% of job success comes from having well‐developed soft and people skills, and only 15% of job success comes from technical skills and knowledge (hard skills).” Your technical skills only give you a low 15 % chance to stay there and climb the corporate ladder.

Of course, many who, somehow, circumvented the multiple layers of screening without having the right skills, according to Mark Murphy, fail within the first 18 months. What is interesting, however, is that He said, “89 percent of them failed for attitudinal reasons [soft skills]. Only 11 percent failed due to a lack of hard skills.”

The bottom-line is to win recruiter (s) your side, get into the door, and succeed in that organization you need certain soft skills. You cannot over depend on your killer resume and interviews skills alone. If the recruiters are experienced, they sniff your lack of soft skills. You cannot pass them by only preparing for the kinds of questions most recruiters ask.

Thus, resume and interviewing skills are overrated. What you need before getting your feet in and afterward are well-developed soft skills.

Knowing the vital roles soft skills play for success in the workplace and beyond, I wrote a fantastic book entitled ‘Soft skills That Make or Break Your Success: 12 soft skills to master self, get along with, and lead others successfully’. Go to the website of Success Pathways, LLC to learn more, download the first part of the book for free. If you’re in the DC metro area, don’t miss my upcoming presentations on August 4th and 11th. I’m also in preparation to provide boot camp style 2-day or 3-day intensive workshops that will start soon. To learn about these events, check our website @ www.successpws.com