Ex-Walla Walla woman writes how-to for executive job seekers

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WALLA WALLA -- Former Walla Wallan Colleen Aylward, now a Seattle-area consultant for businesses and job seekers, has written a self-help book aimed at executives who've lost their jobs and are seeking re-employment in a vastly changed business landscape.

In "From Bedlam to Boardroom," available on amazon.com and other retailers, Aylward dedicates the book "to every business person who has recently been, or is about to be fired, laid off, shut out, made reduntant, or squeezed out in this global economic bedlam."

Aylwood, daughter of Jim Aylward, attended the University of Puget Sound and University of Washington after graduating from DeSales Catholic High School in Walla Walla.

She became president of executive search firm Devon James Associates Inc. in 1992, a position she still holds, and in 2006 founded and is chief executive of InterviewStudio.com, according to her online profile.

She also has written numerous articles for such publications as The Wall Street Journal, Washington CEO, SmartMoney and Fast Company Magazine.

Her 10-chapter book focuses on offering tips for executive job seekers looking to gain visibility in their careers.

She places heavy emphasis on adapting to an online world and how unemployed executives can use it to get their names and expertise out there by creating a virtual network of business connections and support.

The book also provides information on what employers want in candidates, how to craft an effective resume and taking advantage of social media, online video, blogging and use of executive recruiters, among other topics.

The current climate for job seekers and traditional ways of finding work is not "just a blip that will self-correct" when the economy improves, she writes in her preface to the book.

"Things won't go back to those scenarios again. Moving forward in your career is all about digitizing your brand now," Aylward writes.

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