Tag Archives: advice

Apologies

Let’s face it, we could all afford to be better communicators. Here is a lesson on apologies. A bad apology is worse than no apology. In the working world, if you manage to find a job, there are always going to be people you cannot stand, like that guy from Office Space, “I’m gonna need you to go ahead and come in on Sunday too, m’kay?” The bottom line is, if there is friction, apologies are necessary. Not halfhearted, but wholesome, sincere apologies.office-space

To all of our male readers, maybe no one has ever told you this before, but apologies are not pass/fail, anything lowering than an A really doesn’t cut it. So here is a road-map of what to say to anyone, a boss, colleague, classmate, even significant other:

1.) This is what I’ve done wrong.

2.) I feel badly that I’ve hurt you.

3.) How do I make this better?

If you follow these step, I can almost guarantee you will be married forever, and probably employed forever too, even in this economy since that seems to be a secret no one knows.

A good apology has the ability to heal a wound, where a bad one is just like pouring salt in it. If you want to keep your job in this day and age, you must be aware of these three simple rules. Utilizing them in real-life situations is good practice as well!

Stuck in a Rut? Get a Coach!

If you believe you have done everything you possibly can to find a job and you are just not having any luck, then perhaps it is time for you to hire a career coach! Yes, the current state of the economy is not ideal for spending money on the non-essential but this may be the solution for you! d_coach

 

These coaches provide sessions where they will help you to strategize and plan, and are usually around at any time to provide advice or answer questions until you feel comfortable on your own. The International Coaching Federation is one of the free resources available online to help you find the perfect coach if you do not already have a referral from another source.

Remember, when weighing the cost of how much money you will spend paying for this information and the amount of time you will lose by doing the search on your own, you should know that the average hour-long session is around $200. Also, keep in mind that a coach will help you along the way, but they are not recruiters. The coach will most likely only refer you when he or she is confident in your abilities.

I know I made the decision to hire a coach to help me find the right college in high school and though it was pricey as well, it was very helpful. However, it is not right for everyone. So if you have the money, and you have already done everything we have told you to do on our blog and you are still having trouble, take some time to research this option.

 

Anything But Ordinary

 

It is clear that we are all nervous about losing our jobs in this economy, especially those of us who just recently entered the career world. We are all scared of making the slightest wrong move, knowing how easily replaceable we are with all the job seekers out there today. However, it is important to remember who we are during all of these tough times. Figure out your strengths and advantages in your career position, and milk them. By no means should you “play it safe” and compromise your creativity because you do not want to be shot down by the big guys.

When you lack creativity, you are only standard, therefore most likely decreasing your chance of sustainability rather than increasing it. No one wants average, so find your competitive edge and use it to your advantage. Don’t be afraid to ask for the opportunity to use these special creative skills you posses. This should put you in the perfect position to get your feet wet and test out your ideas, showing your business partners and bosses that you are one to keep around if they are making cuts. untitled-1

Don’t let the recession and the competitive workforce frighten you into being an ‘average Joe’ in your career! In this rapidly changing modern world, followers are the last thing we need, so be a leader and be innovative in all that you do!

Set Your Agenda!

Do you want to be successful in finding a new career or job? Who doesn’t? Well, the first step is setting an agenda. This is useful to both those just entering the work force, as well as those getting back into it, or even when coming from another job.

The primary goal of your agenda is to focus yourself. Set your goals and know your goals so that you can choose up to three jobs to really go after. Once you have decided on the few jobs you really want to pursue, you can put all your effort into making your resume, cover letters, etc., perfect for those positions! This way you are not sending out a ton of sub-par resumes, but around three truly solid ones. (It is always good to send out your resume, even if it is for a job that is not your primary target).

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It is important to not only set this agenda, but to really stick to it and continue to follow it throughout your entire job search. Do everything you possibly can to be consistent with your goals. Also, be ambitious and seek out all of your potential connections through networking. Do your research and jump at any occasion that will help guide you further in your search.

It is difficult to be so dedicated to pursuing your career, however I assure you it will pay off!

Common Mistakes New Grads Make

I stumbled across an article written in 2007 by Anne Fisher about the 5 Mistakes New Grads Make. Although the optimism meninsuitsof the 2007 job market is the thing of a past, the advice for new grads is still relevant.

1. Keep parents’ involvement to a minimal- Your parents can help expand your network and make professional contacts for you, but make sure you are the one actively searching for and applying for jobs. You will come off as mature and professional if you keep your parents’ help behind the scenes.

2. Manage your social media profiles- Keep in mind posting information to the net makes your profile one Google search away from public knowledge. Make sure your profiles on social networking sites such as MySpace and Facebook are appropriate and a good representation of your personal and professional lives. Potential employers do not want to see pictures of your scandalous Halloween costumes or your first keg stand.

3. Network, Network, Network- Let friends and family in your network know you are job hunting. Keep in mind everyone in your network has their own network of professionals they can talk you up to. College alumni associations are another networking resource.

4. Say “Thank you”- When someone goes out of their way to help you with your job search or refers you a potential employer, email or send them a hand-written note expressing your gratitude. New grads are underestimating the impact of a simple ‘thanks.’

5. Appropriate voice-mail greetings- Although a poem or rap directing your caller to leave a message brings a smile to your face, it is not an appropriate greeting for potential employers. Record a mature, respectable message detailing who they have reach and to leave a message.

More People Searching For Fewer Jobs

CNN posted an article titled “To find a job, ignore doom-and-gloom news, cnnexperts say” on March 6th advising job seekers to block out all the negative news about the economy. The article continues to state that it is not relevant to your personal job search. Simply put,  there are just more people searching for fewer jobs. The article concluded with the advice “Go look for a job, any job–now.”

It’s difficult to put aside your apprehensions about the economy, especially when job seeking. I have applied to many positions with little responses and it’s frustrating. The aspect of an uncertain future is unnerving. Should I broaden my job search and “look for any job” as the above-mentioned article suggests? This After Grad author is in need of your advice?

Advice: Straight From the Top!

I had the pleasure of spending the day in D.C. last Friday at Burson-Marsteller, a leading global public relations and communications firm. This means a lot more to me because of my particular field of study, however, the lessons I learned pertain to anyone looking to find a career.

It was a “Career day” hosted by the brightest minds in the firm, who had some great advice for us. They admitted how important our generation really is when it comes to news dissemination. No one understands social media like Gen-Y does, and our elders know this. They want young people working around them to help them understand how to reach people through various outlets. With all of the different pockets of information, young people’s perspectives and fresh ideas are really welcomed and extremely valuable to these major corporations.  However, we are also cautioned to be open-minded to alternatives that are given to us by the superiors in our companies.

Some other great advice was to believe in meritocracy. If you work hard, you will rise to the top. This must be taken very seriously. The smallest task should be precisely done with as much thought put into it as any other job. “Be the best photo-copier you can be!”

Lastly, it is important to know what you know, know what you don’t know, and discover the rest. Do not guess when you are out in the real world. Ask questions and allow yourself to gain knowledge, it will only make you better at what you do.

I was also able to speak with some recent graduates working at the company. It was assuring seeing young faces having so much success. Their advice for finding a career was to network. For example, have coffee with different people in your career field, such as your parent’s friends, even if they are not hiring, they may know someone else who is. Hold on to these contacts and use them as unbiased advice givers.