Tag Archives: career

Does Avid Social Media Use Harm Your Career?

22 Nov

Over the years, we have posted a lot about self-branding, the importance of interpersonal communication (especially TALKING!), and similar topics. Last month, we discussedMonotasking Vs. Multitasking,” concluding that monotasking is a lot more effective than multitasking — urban legends aside.

Today’s post focuses on a recent provocative article by Cal Newport for the New York Times, “Quit Social Media. Your Career May Depend on It“:

“Many people should follow me and quit social media. There are many issues with social media, from its corrosion of civic life to its cultural shallowness, but the argument I want to make is more pragmatic: You should quit social media because it can hurt your career.”

“First, interesting opportunities and useful connections are not as scarce as social media proponents claim. In my own professional life, as I improved my standing, I began receiving more interesting opportunities than I could handle. I currently have filters on my Web site aimed at reducing, not increasing, the number of offers and introductions I receive.”

“My second objection concerns the idea that social media is harmless. The ability to concentrate without distraction on hard tasks is increasingly valuable in an complicated economy. Social media weaken this skill because they’re designed to be addictive. The more you use social media in the way it’s designed to be used — throughout your waking hours — the more your brain learns to crave a quick hit of stimulus at the hint of boredom.”

“Third, dedication to cultivating your social media brand is a fundamentally passive approach to professional advancement. It diverts your time and attention from producing work that matters and toward convincing the world that you matter. The latter activity is seductive, especially for those raised on this message, but it can be disastrously counterproductive.”

 
Click the image to read more.

Image by David Saracino

Image by David Saracino


 

GREAT Tools to Assist You in a Job Search

7 Nov

Two weeks ago, the following information was posted. If you are in a job search, these tools are VERY useful for you. In case you missed it, we are publishing the post again.

_______________________________________________________________________

When searching for a job, are you effective? There are many excellent digital tools that can assist you in undertaking a better job search.

As Maria Onzain writes for Tech.co:

“Do you feel your job hunt efforts are inefficient? Do you want to jump-start your career but not sure how to do it? Using the right technology will help you build up a winning resume faster. Each of these digital tools will help you in the different phases of your job hunt.”

  • With Uptowork, “choose one of 20 templates in 400 colors and let this resume generator guide you. Once you have filled out all the sections, you will be able to edit and personalize it before getting a URL to share. From the dashboard, you can to track your resume’s performance and check how many times it has been seen and downloaded by recruiters.”
  • Use Grammarly to “make make sure your resume and cover letter are error-free. Copy and paste your resume in this platform, and you will instantly see if you have made any grammar mistakes.”
  • Through Jobscan, you can “check if your resume is tailored to the job description. Jobscan optimizes your resume keywords against the job description. All you need to do is paste your resume and the job description, and it will scan it for you.”
  • With GlassDoor, you can “get to know companies inside out. You can search for hundreds of companies all over the world and find precious information including, but not limited to, first-hand employees reviews, salary expectations, and details about the enterprise’s specific recruiting process.”
  • JobHero can “help you manage the whole job searching process. With the smart browser extension, you can save job opportunities from across the Web and you can access a personal dashboard to track the application process.”

 
Click the image to read more.


 

Can You Start a Business in Your Garage?

1 Nov

Forty years ago, Apple was founded by 20-something young guys– some say, in a garage (Steve Wozniack disagrees with that depiction 🙂 ). Despite a number of ups and downs over the years, we know that Apple has emerged as the most valuable company in the world. Here is a video on the history of Apple.

 

In today’s post, we want to show that other small startups have also been very successful and remain so today. So, the answer to this question — Can you start a business in your garage? — is a resounding yes. And this remains true today.

As Matthew Anderson recently observed for TheSelfEmployed.com:

“For many people, the idea of just starting their own business lies somewhere in the realm of fantasy. It’s something for someone else to do, something that requires investors and business know-how, or something an average person could never think of doing. The truth, however, is that starting your own business requires only one thing – determination. Well, if history is any indicator, a garage might help as well.”

  • Amazon — “At one time, Amazon was simply an online bookstore; and founder Jeff Bezos ran the company out of his garage in Bellevue, Washington. Needless to say, the Amazon of today is just a bit bigger – the world’s largest online retailer. In keeping with its bookstore beginnings, the Amazon Kindle is widely regarded as the best E-reader on the market.”
  • Disney — “Walt Disney and his brother Roy moved to California and set up the first Disney studio in a one- car garage behind their uncle Robert’s house in Los Angeles in 1923 to film and sell his Alice Comedies, which combined a live-action actress with an animated cat. Nearly a century later, Disney is one of the largest media corporations in the world.”
  • Harley Davidson — “William Harley and his friend Arthur Davidson worked in a shed to make the motorized bicycle a reality. In 1903, Harley-Davidson was founded. Today, it is one of the most well-known motorcycle brands in the world; and you can buy  anything from aprons to clocks and outdoor oil-can-shaped lights with the Harley-Davidson logo.”
  • Maglite — “In 1955, Tony Maglica  bought a lathe and set up a tool shop in his garage. After operating his business for 25 years, the innovative Mag-Lite was released in 1979. It is now the standard-issue flashlight for U.S. police officers and was referred to by the Wall Street Journal as the ‘Cadillac of flashlights.’”
  • Yankee Candle Co. — “Sixteen-year-old Michael Kittredge created his first scented candles out of melted crayons for his mother in the family’s garage in 1969. When neighbors showed interest, he began producing the candles in larger quantities. With help from two high school friends, Yankee Candle Company was founded. Fast forward to 1998, Kittredge sells the firm that began with a gift for his mom to a private equity company for $500 million dollars.”

 

Click the image to read more from Anderson.

 

Secretly (?) Using LinkedIn for a Job Search

26 Oct

If you are currently employed and looking for confidentiality in a search for another job, you may have a tough task ahead of you — especially if you use LinkedIn during the search.

With this dilemma in mind, LinkedIn has recently introduced Open Candidates. As LinkedIn’s Dan Shapero writes:

“The secret to career happiness is finding a job you love, however there is no way to tell the world that you’re open to new opportunities without worrying about your employer finding out. But imagine if you could signal to recruiters everywhere that you’d like to hear from them, and by doing so increase your chances of having one of those magic moments when a recruiter reaches out with an amazing opportunity.”

Introducing Open Candidates. Open Candidates is a new feature that makes it easier to connect with your dream job by privately signaling to recruiters that you’re open to new job opportunities. You can specify the types of companies and roles you are most interested in and be easily found by the hundreds of thousands of recruiters who use LinkedIn to find great professional talent. Open Candidates is accessible from the “Preferences” tab on the LinkedIn Jobs home page.”

Here’s a short video overview.

 

So, is this new service as good as it seems? Maybe! Consider these observations from

“When you opt in to the new feature, called Open Candidate, recruiters are able to see that you are interested in potential opportunities. At the same time, LinkedIn will do its best to block your information from appearing to recruiters at your company or its subsidiaries. When you opt in, you can select a few specifics about what type of job you would like, what city you want to work in, and write a short message to potential recruiters.”

“Though LinkedIn does its best to hide your information from recruiters at or affiliated with your company, Dan Shapero notes that they can’t guarantee that it won’t be seen. Still, he says that early testing of the feature has been successful on all sides: so-called ‘open candidates’ are more likely to be contacted by recruiters and recruiters are more likely to hear back from them.”

The bottom line: The likelihood of your new job search being confidential on LinkedIn depends on how active your current employer is on LinkedIn — and social networkers do communicate with one another. Working with recruiters OFF-line will still be more confidential.
 

Personality Types and Career Choice

25 Oct

Our personalities affect every facet of our lives, including the jobs for which we are best suited. So, it is vital to understand your personality and how it will impact on your career success.

Let us turn to a large-scale study of 16 personality types by Truity Psychometrics titled “Does Your Personality Type Predict Your Career Destiny?”  [Click the preceding link to read in detail about the study.] Thousands of 12,000 people completed all or most of the research questionnaire for the online Truity study:

“Personality type assessments are one of the most commonly used tools in career planning. Extensive research, much of it based on the MBTI® assessment, has examined occupational trends among the 16 types, and studies have found clear differences in the occupations chosen by people of different personality types.”

 

“Our goal in this study was to objectively evaluate the assumptions that we make about the career paths of the 16 personality types. To this end, we aim to do a comprehensive analysis of various career outcomes among the 16 personality types and examine what differences, if any, exist between types.”

 

Here as an infographic look at the study results at Tech.co.


 

How to Be Better in Your Job Search

24 Oct

When searching for a job, are you effective? There are many excellent digital tools that can assist you in undertaking a better job search.

As Maria Onzain writes for Tech.co:

“Do you feel your job hunt efforts are inefficient? Do you want to jump-start your career but not sure how to do it? Using the right technology will help you build up a winning resume faster. Each of these digital tools will help you in the different phases of your job hunt.”

  • With Uptowork, “choose one of 20 templates in 400 colors and let this resume generator guide you. Once you have filled out all the sections, you will be able to edit and personalize it before getting a URL to share. From the dashboard, you can to track your resume’s performance and check how many times it has been seen and downloaded by recruiters.”
  • Use Grammarly to “make make sure your resume and cover letter are error-free. Copy and paste your resume in this platform, and you will instantly see if you have made any grammar mistakes.”
  • Through Jobscan, you can “check if your resume is tailored to the job description. Jobscan optimizes your resume keywords against the job description. All you need to do is paste your resume and the job description, and it will scan it for you.”
  • With GlassDoor, you can “get to know companies inside out. You can search for hundreds of companies all over the world and find precious information including, but not limited to, first-hand employees reviews, salary expectations, and details about the enterprise’s specific recruiting process.”
  • JobHero can “help you manage the whole job searching process. With the smart browser extension, you can save job opportunities from across the Web and you can access a personal dashboard to track the application process.”

 
Click the image to read more.


 

Walmart Finally Gets It: Employees Matter

19 Oct

For years, Walmart has had tough labor practices and been heavily criticized for them. For example, it has been sued by many women for unequal pay and promotion opportunities, fought hard against employees unionizing, paid low wages, etc. But, now Walmart is loosening up; and it realizes that happier employees can mean happier customers due to better customer service. It has even brought back store greeters in many locales where they had been eliminated to reduce costs. Yes, this comes at a time when U.S. revenues have been weak.

As Neil Irwin reports for the New York Times:

“A couple of years ago, Walmart, which once built its entire branding around a big yellow smiley face, was creating more than its share of frowns. Shoppers were fed up. They complained of dirty bathrooms, empty shelves, endless checkout lines, and impossible-to-find employees. Only 16 percent of stores were meeting the company’s customer service goals. The dissatisfaction showed up where it counts. Sales at stores open at least a year fell for five straight quarters; the company’s revenue fell for the first time in Walmart’s 45-year run as a public company in 2015 (currency fluctuations were a big factor, too).”

“To fix the situation, executives came up with what, for Walmart, counted as a revolutionary idea. As an efficient, multinational selling machine, the company had a reputation for treating employee pay as a cost to be minimized. In 2015, Walmart announced it would pay its workers more. Executives sketched out a plan to spend more money on increased wages and training, and offer more predictable scheduling. The results are promising. By early 2016, the proportion of stores hitting their targeted customer-service ratings had rebounded to 75 percent. Sales are rising again.”

“An employee making more than the market rate, after all, is likely to work harder and show greater loyalty. Workers who see opportunities to get promoted have an incentive not to mess up, compared with people who feel they are in a dead-end job. A person has more incentive to work hard, even when the boss isn’t watching, when the job pays better than what you could make down the street.”

 

Click the image to read a lot more from Irwin.

 

A Walmart trainee perfecting a cereal display in Fayetteville, Arkansas. Credit Melissa Lukenbaugh for The New York Times

A Walmart trainee perfecting a cereal display in Fayetteville, Arkansas. Credit Melissa Lukenbaugh for New York Times.


 

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