Category: Career and Jobs

Top 3 Salary Negotiation Mistakes

Top 5 Salary Negotiation Mistakes

If you want to make adults squirm like kindergartners, broach the subject of salary negotiation. Talking money makes most workers uncomfortable. And while they want such talks to succeed, they make plenty of blunders. If only they had some basic negotiation guidelines.

So what’s the best way to avoid stumbling and also boost your confidence? Rebecca Warriner, a job search coach and owner of Woodland Recruiting, a Seattle-based recruitment and outplacement firm, has some salary negotiation tips when pursuing a win-win situation for you and the employer—rather than starting out defensively, assuming you’re going to get a low offer. Warriner notes, “Salary negotiation is a dialogue that the company and the candidate should be having throughout the hiring process. It should not be a one-time conversation at the end.” She says to embrace your power and how it relates to the negotiation.

Warriner, who’s been on both sides of salary negotiation for over 15 years, offers a handy list of negotiation mistakes to avoid.

Being unprepared. “I get pretty frustrated as a recruiter when I ask somebody, ‘What are your expectations as far as pay goes?’ [and they do not have an answer],” says Warriner. She suggests doing some homework, and then determining what you’d like to earn. Warriner recommends several methods, including using salary information Web sites, talking to recruiters, asking friends who work in human resources, or connecting with local professional organizations that have salary information.

Once you have a solid answer, practice it. Get in front of the mirror, look yourself in the eye and say, “I earned $55,000 at my last job and I am targeting the $60,000s in this job search.” If you feel you were underpaid in your last gig but aren’t sure about bringing it up, Warriner advises raising the topic in a positive light, underscoring that you’d like to increase your earnings as you make your next career move to better reflect your skills and experience. It pays to be confident with your salary negotiation counteroffer, she adds.

Playing games. Telling a prospective employer what you think they want to hear is risky business. “Oftentimes, a candidate will say that they are very flexible; that they are willing to take a step back in pay. Don’t say you’re really flexible if you’re not,” Warriner says. She points out that this approach assumes the company will be more invested in and attached to you at the end of the interview process, and therefore willing to offer you more money than you first asked for—but they won’t be.

The key, she says, is to be confident in the salary range you want, and walk away from jobs that aren’t offering it. More than anything, “don’t go through the [hiring] process to have compensation be the reason it doesn’t work,” she says.

Warriner also discourages pitting offers against each other, such as going to your current employer and saying, “I’d like to stay here, but this other company is offering me more.” She says “companies are not interested in candidates that are only interested in pay.” Warriner believes this will likely result in a lost job offer, and lost respect for you from all companies involved in the process.

Comparing apples to oranges. If you’re changing careers or moving into a different industry, Warriner says you should tailor your salary expectations. For example, a person moving from a larger company to a smaller organization, or from a corporate outfit to a nonprofit, should expect lower pay. She suggests looking at compensation factors beyond salary in these cases, such as the commute, benefits, the team you’ll work with and industry experience you’ll gain.

Stringing a company along. When the time comes to say yes or no, you need to be ready. Warriner believes that “the comp package is something that should have been talked about during the entire process,” so you shouldn’t encounter any big surprises. If it really is the first time you’re seeing the offer and you need time to review it, say something positive, such as, “I’m really happy to receive this offer. I am happy to work for this company. I just want to make sure I am seeing everything and would like tonight to think about it.”

Following bad advice. “A lot of advice on salary negotiation is really old fashioned,” says Warriner. “It is based on power plays and assumes that the company is being dishonest.” Some examples include delaying the salary conversation as long as possible, not giving a salary range/figure, or delaying your response to an offer for a week. Taking this power-play approach may cause the company to be turned off by you.

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Developing a strategic vision for your career plan

Developing a strategic vision for your career plan

How many times will you change careers in your lifetime? If you’re like most people, you’ll change careers at least several times over the course of your life. How successful you’ll be in making transitions among careers can at least be partially attributed to the amount of career planning and preparation you’ve done.

Every job-seeker needs to take the time to step way from the day-to-day grind of work and spend quality time reflecting on your career and developing some plans for your future. Whether you love your current job and employer or feel frustrated and confined by your job, career planning can help. Think of career planning as building bridges from your current job/career to your next job/career; without the bridge, you may easily stumble or lose your way, but with the bridge there is safety and direction.

This article provides you with some basic guidelines for both short-term and long-term career planning.

Short-Term Career Planning

A short-term career plan focuses on a timeframe ranging from the coming year to the next few years, depending on the job-seeker. The key characteristic of short-term career planning is developing realistic goals and objectives that you can accomplish in the near future.

As you begin your career planning, take the time to free yourself from all career barriers. What are career barriers? There are personal barriers (such as lack of motivation, apathy, laziness, or procrastination), family pressure (such as expectations to work in the family business, follow a certain career path, or avoidance of careers that are below your status/stature), and peer pressure. And while career planning and career decision-making is an important aspect of your life, do not put so much pressure on yourself that it paralyzes you from making any real choices, decisions, or plans. Finally, career planning is an ever-changing and evolving process — or journey — so take it slowly and easily.

Long-Term Career Planning

Long-term career planning usually involves a planning window of five years or longer and involves a broader set of guidelines and preparation. Businesses, careers, and the workplace are rapidly changing, and the skills that you have or plan for today may not be in demand years from now. Long-range career planning should be more about identifying and developing core skills that employers will always value while developing your personal and career goals in broad strokes.

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Horrible female boss is still a problem

Horrible female boss is still a problem

Who would you rather work for: a man or a woman?

According to a recent Gallup poll, just over half of Americans say they don’t have a preference, but those who do strongly lean towards men. Forty percent of women and 29% of men say they prefer a male boss to a female one, and the results are even more skewed when broken down by political affiliation – Republicans, unsurprisingly given their socially conservative views, strongly prefer male bosses, while Democrats are about evenly split. That political divide helps to shed some light on why, in 2013, so many people still prefer to have men in charge. It’s a problem of worldview and stereotypes, not of inherent characteristics or lady-boss bitchiness.

The good news is that the preference for female bosses is the highest it’s been since Gallup started polling on this question in the 1950s. Back then, only 5% of respondents preferred a female boss, while 66% wanted to work for a man. But while the radical increase of women in the workforce has shifted views, we’re still not living in a society that sees women and men as equally competent, likeable and authoritative.

Americans don’t prefer male bosses because men carry some sort of boss-gene on their Y chromosome; Americans prefer male bosses because male authority is respected while female authority is unbecoming, and because the expectations are set so high for women in power that it’s nearly impossible for any mere mortal to meet them.

Even among ostensibly liberal, equality-supporting people, “that one horrible female boss I had” is a staple story in the work-and-gender debates. It’s an anecdote that gets trotted out for little discernible reason other than as a suffix to an “I’m-not-sexist-but” grimace; a way to demonstrate the speaker’s supposed honesty about the real problems with women in charge.

And it’s not a story that people are just making up – lots of us have, in fact, had female bosses who are less than stellar. The complaints vary, but are usually some combination of: she was bitchy; she was demanding; she wasn’t nice or understanding; she didn’t engage in enough mentorship of younger women; she worked unreasonable hours and expected everyone else to; she cut out too early to be with her kids; she was scary.

The problem isn’t the fact that some female bosses suck, it’s that if you have a crappy boss and he’s a man, the conclusion is “I had a crappy boss”. If you have a crappy boss and she’s a woman, the conclusion is “I had a crappy female boss, so female bosses are crappy.” No one sees a bad male boss as a reflection on all men everywhere, or emblematic of male leadership capabilities. But bring up women at the head of the table and every bad female co-worker or supervisor suddenly becomes Exhibit A for what’s wrong with female bosses.

I saw this too often when I worked at a large corporate law firm. Younger female associates felt put out when the small number of female partners weren’t there to adequately mentor and guide them, feeling it was the responsibility of the more senior women to take the younger ones under their wings in female solidarity and sisterhood. Of course, many of the female partners and senior associates did mentor the younger women, but women in law firms become fewer as you move up the ranks – we vastly outnumber men in the secretarial staff, are about even with them in the junior associate classes, and then become fewer and fewer up the seniority chain. By the time you reach the tippy-top, fewer than 1 in 6 are women. It’s a gendered seniority structure – pyramidal for women, tower-like for men.

Men, of course, can mentor young women, and many do. But they’re more likely to mentor junior male associates, not out of intentional bias but because they simply see themselves reflected in those young men, and can interact without any hint of impropriety. And the many men in power who don’t offer mentorship aren’t really noticed. But if women aren’t actively helping out other women every step of the way, we’re selfish and failing our gender.

When we do succeed, we’re also considered less likeable, while the inverse is true for men – successful men gain in likability. In one study, students evaluated the story of a successful entrepreneur, half the time described as “Heidi” and the other half as “Howard”. Even though the stories were identical, Howard was perceived as effective and likeable, while Heidi was deemed selfish and a less desirable colleague. In another, the simple change of a name from female to male on application materials led evaluators to judge the male candidate as more competent and hireable; male candidates were also offered higher starting salaries and more mentorship opportunities than female candidates with identical credentials.

From the time we’re little, girls are taught to play nicely, and the opinionated or determined ones are derisively called “bossy” – when was the last time you heard the word “bossy” applied to a little boy?

And even – especially – the most ardently feminist among us pin our hopes on the very few women at the top, and are even more spectacularly disappointed and angry when they don’t meet all of our ideals.

Those facts, widely publicized by Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg in her book Lean In, were ironically illustrated in the response to Sandberg’s book. When male CEOs write best-selling books on how to succeed in business, they’re roundly lauded. When Sandberg does it, she’s not adequately representing all women everywhere, and she’s an out-of-touch rich lady telling the less privileged what to do. She’s a know-it-all goody two-shoes and she doesn’t know my life. She’s bossy.

The take-away from the weight of the social science research on gender and power is that while you might truly believe your female boss was a real bitch or that your male boss was just better at his job, your views are colored by your boss’s gender. Your assessment of him or her might say more about your own unrecognized biases than it does about any objective reality.

In the course of my career, the majority of my most committed mentors, champions and door-openers have been women. I’ve had great female bosses, as well as great male bosses. I’ve also worked for total jerks, and the jerks have been fairly apportioned by gender – I’ve worked for more male jerks than female jerks, but I’ve also worked for more men generally. But even as a professional promoter of gender equality, I’ve caught myself making unfair and gender-influenced assessments of my superiors – the tone of her email was bitchy while his was just direct.

That’s the trouble with battling these forms of insidious, unintentional bias: most of us think we’re fair-minded people who don’t let things like gender, skin color, age or other factors influence our assessment of others’ skills or character, but that’s simply not the case. For the overwhelming majority of us who are not as fair-minded as we think we are, standard anti-discrimination policies and laws aren’t going to get to the root of the problem. What needs to shift is awareness – individual commitments to checking in and taking a step back to assess your own thoughts. It also takes institutional commitments to countering unintentional bias, both by ensuring diversity in hiring and promotion and by effective education about how bias actually works.

It’s heartening to see that more Americans than ever before state no preference for the gender of their boss. Now, we’ve just got to make sure that those stated preferences actually translate into the workplace.

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Hot careers with high pay potential

Hot careers with high pay potential

Want to pursue an in-demand career? Check out these six fast-growing careers with solid earning potential. One health care career has a median wage of $86K a year and is projected to grow 22% by 2020.

Medical and Health Services Manager

With all of the changes in the health care system in recent years, it’s no wonder that the U.S. Department of Labor projects medical and health services managers to be in great demand.

In fact, the Department of Labor projects job growth in this sector to be faster than the average, at 22 percent, from 2010 to 2020. One main reason for their projected growth? An increased number of physicians, patients, and procedures, the Department says. In effect, managers will be needed to organize and oversee the medical information and staffs.

To get into specifics, medical and health services managers work to improve the efficiency and delivery of health care services, says the Department. How? By keeping up on new laws and regulations for facilities, managing hospital finances, communicating with the members of medical staff, and more.

Education Options: Most medical and health service managers have at least a bachelor’s degree in health administration. However, a master’s degree in health services, public health, or business administration (MBA) is also common.

Median Annual Wage: $86,400
Wage for Top 10 Percent of Workers: $147,890
Wage for Bottom 10 Percent of Workers: $52,730

Hot careers with high pay potential


Do you get fired up at the thought of balancing your checkbook? Do you absolutely love tax season – or at least not hate it? You could be accountant material, and that’s a good thing if you’re looking for a high-growth career.

In fact, the U.S. Department of Labor projects that nearly 200,000 accountant jobs will be created (a 16 percent increase) from 2010 to 2020. The Department of Labor says this stellar job forecast is due to the recent corporate financial crises and stricter laws and regulations in the financial sector – all of which require an increased focus on accounting.

As for their daily responsibilities, accountants do everything from help businesses reduce costs, prepare tax returns, examine financial statements, comply with financial regulations, and communicate with management about a business’s financial operations, says the Department.

Education Options: The majority of accountants and auditors need at least a bachelor’s degree in accounting or a related field. Some employers may prefer a master’s degree in accounting or business administration (MBA) with a concentration in accounting.

Median Annual Wage: $62,850
Wage for Top 10 Percent of Workers: $109,870
Wage for Bottom 10 Percent of Workers: $39,640

Elementary School Teacher

Do you want to pursue a growing career that involves mentoring the next generation? A gig as an elementary school teacher could be in your lesson plan.

Why? Because this career is hot – at least according to the U.S. Department of Labor’s 2012 list of “Occupations with the largest job growth.” Elementary teacher ranked number 15, with a projected 248,800 jobs created from 2010 to 2020. However, keep in mind that faster growth is expected in the South and West of the country, thanks to more student enrollment. Growth will be slower in the Midwest and Northeast.

Elementary school teachers teach grades first through fifth and sometimes sixth, seventh, and eighth, according to the Department of Labor. It goes on to say that these teachers often teach many subjects, like math, English, reading, and science.

Education Options: Every state requires public elementary teachers to earn a bachelor’s degree in elementary education and have a state-issued certification or license. Some states also require elementary school teachers to major in a specific content area, such as math or science.

Median Annual Wage: $52,840
Wage for Top 10 Percent of Workers: $81,230
Wage for Bottom 10 Percent of Workers: $34,910

Network and Computer Administrators

Can you name one medium-sized to big business that isn’t totally or partially dependant on computers? We’re guessing you’re drawing a blank right now. So it’s no surprise that the U.S. Department of Labor projects jobs for network and computer administrators to grow by a whopping 28 percent, or nearly 100,000 positions, by 2010 to 2020.

The Department of Labor says this is because businesses will invest in newer, faster technology and require better security. As a result, “More administrators with proper training will be needed to reinforce network and system security,” says the Department.

In terms of their day-to-day tasks, network and computer administrators organize, install, and support a business’s computer systems. If you’re a computer lover, you’ll likely also love this gig, since your work life will be dealing with such things as local area networks (LANs), wide area networks (WANs), and intranets, adds the Department.

Education Options: A bachelor’s degree in a computer or information science related field is most common for this career. Some positions, however, require only an associate’s degree or a certificate in a computer field, along with some related work experience.

Median Annual Wage: $70,970
Wage for Top 10 Percent of Workers: $112,210
Wage for Bottom 10 Percent of Workers: $43,400

Human Resources Specialist

Are you a good judge of people? Maybe you have a knack for ascertaining their strengths and weaknesses? If so, a career as a human resources specialist might be worth considering – especially since it is projected to have stellar job opportunities.

How stellar? According to the U.S. Department of Labor, the occupation of human resources specialist is projected to grow by 21 percent from 2010 to 2020. That’s due to a number of factors, including the increased emphasis on finding and keeping quality employees.

As a human resources specialist, you would help recruit, screen, and place workers into appropriate positions. You also might do things like assess company needs, interview job applicants, process their paperwork, and perform employee orientations, says the Department of Labor.

Education Options: “Most positions require a bachelor’s degree,” says the Department. “When hiring a human resources generalist, for example, most employers prefer applicants who have a bachelor’s degree in human resources, business, or a related field.”

Median Annual Wage: $54,310
Wage for Top 10 Percent of Workers: $94,700
Wage for Bottom 10 Percent of Workers: $29,850

Registered Nurse

Are you looking for a career that helps people improve their health? Look no further than registered nursing. These are the caregivers who perform diagnostic tests and explain patient treatments, among other things, according to the U.S. Department of Labor. You’ll also be happy to hear that these vital health care workers will be in great demand.

In fact, the Department of Labor put registered nurses at the top of its 2012 list of “Occupations with the largest job growth.” It projects more than 700,000 nursing jobs to be created from 2010 to 2020 (that’s a 26 percent growth rate, by the way).

What gives for this high growth? The Department says “Growth will occur primarily because of technological advancements; an increased emphasis on preventive care; and the large, aging baby boomer population who will demand more health care services as they live longer and more active lives.”

Education Options: An associate’s degree in nursing (ADN) or a diploma from an approved nursing program are two education paths commonly taken by registered nurses. They must also be licensed.

Median Annual Wage: $65,950
Wage for Top 10 Percent of Workers: $96,630
Wage for Bottom 10 Percent of Workers: $44,970

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Use your mind to be a happier person

Use your mind to be a happier person

These mental tweaks help cheery types live longer, stay healthier, and even look younger.

Fret Less

To banish worries, put stressors on paper. Writing them down and stashing the note in a “worry jar” (or a drawer) makes it easier to compartmentalize and move on, says Andrea Bonior, Ph.D., a psychologist in Washington, D.C. Limiting anxiety is healthy. A surfeit of the stress hormone cortisol may lead to chronic pain, depression, cognitive issues and even heart problems, potentially shortening your life. Not to mention that constant worry is no fun.

Keep Your Sunny Side Up

Optimists live longer, plain and simple. In a 15-year study of more than 100,000 women, cheery types were 14 percent less likely to die in an eight-year period than gloomy gals were, the National Institutes of Health Women’s Health Initiative finds. To change your thinking, visualize a happy moment: “Imagining yourself in a hammock on the beach can have an immediate, relaxing effect on the body that makes it more difficult to stay focused on the negative,” Bonior says.

If All Else Fails, Take a Nap

When life starts getting you down, catch 40 winks. If you’re stressed out, a 45-minute daytime snooze may lower your blood pressure, a study from Allegheny College reports. Siestas also help you catch up on much-needed sleep. That’s crucial, because chronic sleep deprivation can cause aging at the cellular level. So give yourself permission to nap like a kid. We predict you’ll start feeling like one, too.

Your Relaxation Rx

Which mind / body treatments have the most rock-solid science backing them up? Brent Bauer, M.D., director of the Complementary and Integrative Medicine Program at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota, provides the big picture.

For: Back pain Try: Yoga
For: High cholesterol Try: Qigong
For: Depression Try: Music therapy, qigong, yoga
For: Eating disorders Try: Meditation, yoga
For: Fertility Try: Visualization, yoga
For: Heart health Try: Deep breathing, qigong, yoga
For: Immunity Try: Breathing, chants, meditation, qigong
For: Insomnia Try: Acupuncture, visualization, yoga
For: Joint pain Try: Music therapy, qigong, yoga
For: Migraines Try: Acupuncture, yoga

The Science

The latest cutting-edge research proves your mind can heal your body. Here’s how:

Your body dials down stress. Dr. Benson’s research has found that mind/body practices—meditation, yoga, tai chi, deep breathing, visualization—all elicit the relaxation response, quelling the release of stress hormones cortisol and adrenaline. Your heart slows, blood pressure falls and digestion eases.

The relaxation response causes cells to release micropuffs of nitric oxide, a gas that dilates blood vessels and stabilizes the immune system, Dr. Benson reported in Medical Science Monitor. Mind/body methods worked as well as drugs designed to do the same thing, without the side effects.

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5 Tips to prepare your first job interview

5 Tips to prepare your first job interview

You have completed high school or college and now you’re ready for your first “real” job. You have sent resumes and were called for your first interview. How can you do well in the interview so that you end up being offered the position?

1. Dress professionally. No belly shirts, low cut blouses or flip-flops, because you will work and not the beach. Although it is not necessary to buy a costume, it is particularly important to look professional. If you try to get a job in an office as a conservative accounting firm, do not dress like you’re going to a concert. If you apply for a retail job, you have a little more free. Rather than list and this garment is not acceptable, I would tell you to dress as if you were going to meet one of the most important people in your life because you are!

2. Make sure you are well groomed. Do not look like you just get out of bed and could not bother to take care of basic personal hygiene. Nothing is going to be the HR Manager interview to a close faster than dirty hair, dirty nails and body odor. As an employee, you will be a reflection of society and no customer wants to do business with someone uneducated.

3. Be aware of your body language. A firm handshake at the beginning of the interview shows that you are confident. Maintain eye contact, stay relaxed and pay attention to the interviewer. Ask questions and listen thoughtfully to the answers. Think before you answer the questions the interviewer will walk and keep the conversation on the subject.

4. Be prepared for the interview. Research the company in advance, each company now has a website where you can learn what they do and who their clients. This shows the interviewer that you are interested in the job and took the initiative to find everything I could about the company.

5. Be present in the interview. I interviewed candidates who have acted as if they were waiting for a bus. They do not ask questions but simply listened to me, and I was not really sure if they were attentive. Be enthusiastic, ask questions and participate in the interview. After listing all the functions required for the position, I asked a candidate if this sounds like something she was interested in His answer was easy, “I can do the job.” She did not answer my question, she seemed indifferent and did not get the job. If you can not be excited in the interview, you will not be excited to work either.

First impressions count, and want to let the interviewer that you want the job, are willing to work hard and do your best. You may not necessarily be the most qualified candidate, but still get the job because you were the person most remarkable. Good luck!

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Job-search moves you should avoid

Job-search moves you should avoid

Eager candidates often make these giant blunders without even knowing it.

The phone call desperate post-interview, the proclamation of self-doubt, and means more to deny blundering your chances of winning the job. Despite economic recovery, employers are often slow to display the offers and make hiring decisions. It’s a frustrating situation that can lead to job applicants who wish to act against-productive, timing promising opportunities. Here is our list of 10 real-life job search failures, we hope to serve as cautionary tales job seekers. Do not reproduce these acts against-productive.

Gratuitous infliction interrogation

I was reviewing resumes and found one that stands out in a positive way. I sent an email of the sender and asked if he had one minute to speak by telephone. “I could,” he wrote back. “Where is the company located, what is the starting salary, which is the CEO, and how long have you been in business?” That was the end of the correspondence, our address is on our home page, the salary was included in the job, and the history of the company (including the date of creation and leadership bios) was in the About section of our site. In its haste to ensure its time was not wasted, a reasonable goal, in my opinion, the gentleman asked me to answer four questions that had already been answered if he had done some homework. Lesson: It is to guard against time-sucking job advertisements or even false, but doing so that you do not shoot in the foot.

Forget who you are interviewing with

The Executive Director of a small not for profit sharing that story with me. “I miraculously have enough money of my commission to hire a marketing director last year,” she said. “I was on the moon. I had a job opening to fill valuable. I interviewed five people, three of them from industry and two non-profit world. One of the people in the industry was super intelligent and insightful.

Sadly, she knocked out of the race halfway through the interview. “” How? “I wanted to know.” I asked him to tell me a story that illustrates how it rolls. I told him to think about our agency and five people we need in marketing, and tell me a story of his career that would make it clear that it belongs here. She told me a story about a 24-month project intranet development involving 60 people across functions and six or seven levels of the organization approvals. I was almost asleep when she finished. I think this lady really needs a big company atmosphere. “The history of the job seeker intranet shouted” I do not understand Scrappy non-profit at all. “Lesson: In your job search written communication and especially on an interview, keep your stories and questions relevant to the issues the hiring manager is.

Selling Yourself Short

A friend of an employment agency told me this story. Last summer, she was a candidate on the short list of two finalists for a position in sales management plum. She had just gotten on the phone with the hiring manager, who said: “I have to sleep on it, but I think your guy is Frank get the job tomorrow,” when Frank himself called it. “Do not be angry against me,” says Frank. “Oh, no,” said the officer. “What were you doing, Frank?”

Frank had received the fear and called the hiring manager to say, “If you do not want me in the spot sales manager, I will take a sales territory assignment.” The director was hired in the work territory involved and the other finalist for the work of sales management. The lady agency did not say how he would come to Frank paid the increase, more jobs. Lesson: stay the course. You will never show the employer what you are worth, or to persuade them that you need, crawling.

You leave Vanquish minor adversity

“I am so frustrated with my job search,” said one man I met at the library. “I had an interview last week, and when I got to 20 after 5, the door was locked,” he said. “Did you go back?” I asked. “Did you call or text or HR hiring manager?” “No, I went home,” said the gentleman. “When I returned, there was a message telling me the door was locked and I should go there, but I left the house before the message arrived.”

“Did you see?” I asked. “No, I thought the opportunity was lost.” “Call them!” I said. He did, but they had already completed the task. Lesson: the types of recruitment business are no different from someone else, they make mistakes . In an interview back in my 20s, I toured the entire building looking for an open door for an interview for 5:30, and I finally crossed the loading dock for Show your ingenuity to get by rolling with the punches interview.

Sending a thank-generic

I interviewed a brilliant young man for a role of business development. “Look, Barry,” I said. “I assure you that we are on the same page. Over the next two days, send me an e-mail and tell me what you heard today. It need not be long. Just write a couple of paragraphs on what you see as our competitive position and how you approach the assignment as I know we will be in sync.

“Barry gladly accepted. An hour later, I had the generic post-interview thank you e-mail from Barry, saying,” Dear Ms. Ryan, Thank you very much for chatting with me today. I’m excited to work for your business and I know will do a great job. “Today we would call an Epic Fail in the department, showing understanding. Lesson: What the hiring manager asks you or not, make post-interview thank you a summary of the conversation in an intelligent manner, emphasizing that the company faces and how you are equipped to meet these challenges.

Offering a package (double) incorrect information

A reader called me for advice, saying, “I am targeting an opening Product Manager at Company X. I go to a trade show where they are exposed. “We talked about the visit of the company’s booth and chat with employees. A week later, she called again.” I visited the stand but everyone was busy, so I left a package for the sales manager.” “Hmm, the sales manager? “I asked. I thought a likely level of sales director for the interest Job search of an employee not selling packages deposited during a trade show chaotic. What was in the package? “I left him a note to an article I wrote for a newspaper of industry some years ago, ” she said.

“Was the article about Company X?” I asked. “No,” she said, “It was a story about the software documentation.” Unfortunately, the company X is not a software company. Busy working people are inundated with information. Search Job Openings must be specific. My partner could have obtained the name of the hiring manager through a short conversation if she had stuck around this stand as the crew lounge had one minute to discuss. Section n unrelated has not helped his cause and was likely thrown into the recycling bin. Lesson: Your target is the person hiring manager. Other random people in the organization in general are not great unless that led ‘They are your friends. And all the materials you send must be clear what you want and why anyone should care.

Frantically self-doubt

The CEO of a technology start-up called me. “What now?” he said. “I ran an ad, and a lady wrote to me immediately with a large e-mail. I answered saying, “I’d love to talk when you have time. “She wrote to tell me she is not all that technique, and I replied by saying that we need more than just technical people. She wrote again to make sure I knew that ‘It really is not anything technical. At that time, I tried to understand why she responded to the ad at all, but his resume was great, so I said,’ Let’s just get together and go from there.”

Then she wrote again to ask if there would be technical tests at interview. We do not use anything like that, but I lost faith at that point and gave up. Please tell your readers to go with the flow. There is no point in you acing out of employment opportunities because you fear you might get ejected at some point later in the process. “Lesson: Work of the process. At a minimum, you make valuable contacts, learn new things, practice your interview skills, and give you a reason to get dressed.

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Sexy, successful, and single?

Sexy, successful, and single?

Why some professional women can’t find dates.

Here’s the scene: A woman’s spending way too much time around the cheese tray at her neighbor’s drab get-together when suddenly, a tall, slightly stubbled gentleman (think Jack from Lost) approaches. After about 30 seconds of swapping stories about how they each know Trish (host of said drab gathering), he predictably asks her, “So, what do you do?”

Sounds cheesy (pardon the pun), but some women dread revealing their occupation. Who are they? They’re women with impressive jobs-doctors, lawyers, engineers.

And a woman having an impressive job always yields the same reaction from a man: Confusion, awkwardness, that moment when he’s wondering, “Is my job as an assistant manager of a copy shop going to sound pitiful?”

Apparently just because you have a lot of degrees on your wall doesn’t mean you have a lot of suitors at your door. And as women continue to achieve higher-level jobs, there are more smart, accomplished gals who have to face the fact that they may intimidate men. In fact, in 2003, women accounted for 36% of all chemists, 28% of all lawyers, 30% of all physicians and surgeons, and – wow – 66% of all psychologists.

So are successful women doomed to a life of tense cheese-tray introductions? Of course not. These women can either be patient till an equally high-powered man or a naturally confident fella turns up. Or they can know how best to present their career so as not to scare off less-assured guys. Here, some pointers:

Ask for advice

Bring your career down to reality, suggests John Gray, Ph.D., author of Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus. Open up and show a vulnerable side right from the beginning, “When a woman immediately senses that a man is intimidated, she should find a way of communicating that she has a need for some advice,” Dr. Gray explains: “For example, if she’s a doctor, she could talk to him about something frustrating that happened at the hospital that day.” Dr. Gray points out that men want to feel needed, so this tactic is a good way to bring him inside your circle.

Chat up guys about their career

“I say date someone who is as equally passionate about their job as you are,” recommends Jill Farrar, a lawyer. “After speaking legal jargon all day, that’s the last thing I want to come home to. I find myself usually dating doctors, architects or even salesmen-guys who are consumed with their jobs and want to swap stories with me.”

Find equal footing

Don’t let the conversation just be about work. Find a way to change the topic to something you can both relate to: The last movie you saw, your favorite spot for a hike, the wine-tasting class you’re taking next week. The goal here is to get talking about mutual interests-or hobbies you can share with one another. This isn’t just resume-trading time. Show what else makes you tick.

Know when it’s not going to work…

Still, some high-powered gals know that there are some situations where it’s best to say `there are other fish in the sea’: “I dated a guy who couldn’t get over the fact that I had a Master’s degree,” admits Whitney Bessler. “Since he hadn’t been to college, he would always remind me that I had two more degrees than him. He even made a point to read the newspaper right before he would pick me up. I didn’t care about our educational differences. But I did care that he made an issue out of it.” Whitney packed up her two framed diplomas and left.

And what if a guy is perhaps too pleased about your turbo-charged career? That’s a situation Kory Jones, a surgical resident, faced. She thought dating a musician / bartender would provide a nice balance to her intense, life-and-death, grueling-schedule job. “Most guys I date get fed up with the amount of time I spend at work,” explains Dr. Jones. “But this guy encouraged it. He told me to work hard so that when I was done with my residency I would `make the big bucks.’ The last straw was when he introduced me as his Sugar Mama.” The lesson here? Sometimes you don’t have to think too hard to know when a relationship just isn’t going to work.

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Worst mistakes career changers make

Worst mistakes career changers make

You can be a nasty surprise if you’re not careful before changing fields.

Career change is never easy. Half the world thinks you’ve lost your mind, headhunters say you never work again and your loved ones contribute the old “I told you so” routine. But for many people burned out, bored or multiple talents that are sitting on skills they do not get a chance to use, modify the fields is the only way to avoid losing their marbles.

Regardless of your career change strategy, never make these 10 mistakes:

1. Don’t Look for a Job in Another Field Without Some Intense Introspection

Nothing is worse than leaping before you look. Make sure you’re not escape a field that suits you just as bad as the last. Be sure you do a thorough self-assessment first.

2. Don’t Look for Hot Fields Unless They’re a Good Fit for You

You would not try to sneak into your skinny cousin, so why try a field because it works for him? People trying to help and will do the equivalent of whispering “plastics” in your ear. Instead of jumping to their suggestion, take the time to consider your options. Decide what you really want to do. When you enter a field just because it’s hot, burnout is not far behind.

3. Don’t Go into a Field Because Your Friend Is Doing Well in It

Get in-depth information on the fields you are considering networking, reading and doing research online. Having informational interviews with alumni from your college, colleagues, friends and family is a fun way to get the scoop on different fields.

4. Don’t Stick to Possibilities You Already Know About

Stretch your perception of what might work for you. Read job profiles and explore career fields that you learn about self-assessment exercises.

5. Don’t Let Money Be the Deciding Factor

There is not enough money in the world to make you happy if your job does not suit you. Job dissatisfaction and stress is a health issue No. 1 for working adults. This is particularly true for career changers, who often earn less until they get their sea legs in a different field.

6. Don’t Keep Your Dissatisfaction to Yourself or Try to Make the Switch Alone

It’s time to talk to people (probably not your boss for now). Friends, family and colleagues need to know what is going on so they can help you tap into this large percentage of jobs that are not advertised.

7. Don’t Go Back to School Unless You’ve Done Some Test-Drives in the New Field

You’re never too old for an internship, volunteer experience or trying your hand at a contract assignment in a new area. There are many ways to get an experience that will not cost you anything except your time. A new piece may or may not make the world sit up and take notice. Be sure where you want to go before you put yourself through the pain and debt of another program.

8. Be Careful When Using Placement Agencies or Search Firms

Do some research to be sure to find a good match. Ask those who work in the area you are trying to enter or other changers successful career for suggestions. Try to find a company that knows how to be creative when placing career changers – not one that focuses solely on the movement of people on the ladder in the same field.

9. Don’t Expect a Career Counselor to Tell You Which Field to Enter

Counsellors are facilitators, and they’ll follow your lead. They can help find your long-buried dreams and talents, but you have to do research and decision making for yourself. Anyone who promises to tell you what to do is dangerous.

10. Don’t Expect to Switch Overnight

A complete career change usually will take a minimum of six months to shoot, and time often stretches to a year or more.

Changing fields is one of the most invigorating things you can do. It’s like living young again, except with the wisdom of any age you are now.

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How to speed up a career switch

How to speed up a career switch

A hot career could be closer than you think. Check out these 5 careers you could start with an associate’s degree.

Associate’s Degree Career 1: Medical Assistant

Want to work in the growing health care field – without spending years and years in medical school? Look into earning an associate’s degree in medical assisting.

Medical assistants are indispensible to the operation of health practitioner offices, often handling a range of administrative tasks including obtaining patients’ medical history and scheduling appointments.

Career Growth: The U.S. Department of Labor predicts that employment for medical assistants will grow 34 percent between 2008 and 2018.

Average Earning Potential: $29,760 per year.

Associate’s Degree Career 2: Computer Support Specialist

If you want a quick-prep career that will incorporate your love of technology, consider earning an associate’s degree in tech support or information technology, which could prepare you to pursue opportunities as a computer support specialist.

Computer support specialists help people with their computer problems. Some work out of call centers, where they try to help customers figure out what’s wrong with their computer. Others might be on the staff of a company or school.

Career Growth: The U.S. Department of Labor predicts the field will grow by 14 percent between 2008 and 2018.

Average Earning Potential: $49,930 per year.

Associate’s Degree Career 3: Paralegal

Love the law, but don’t want to spend years in law school? Consider studying to pursue paralegal career opportunities through an associate’s degree program.

If you’ve seen the Oscar-winning film “Erin Brockovich,” you know that a career as a paralegal can be far from boring. And while it’s not all Hollywood glamour and sticking it to the man, paralegals do perform many of the same exciting tasks as attorneys, such as researching cases and conducting interviews.

Career Growth: This exciting career is seeing equally exciting growth – the U.S. Department of Labor predicts the field will grow 28 percent between 2008 and 2018.

Average Earning Potential: $49,640 per year.

Associate’s Degree Career 4: Bookkeeper

Love to crunch numbers? Prepare to pursue bookkeeping opportunities by earning an associate’s degree in accounting.

Financial records are often the most important aspect for any business, and bookkeepers are the ones who make sure they are complete and accurate.

Career Growth: The U.S. Department of Labor calls this “one of the largest growth occupations in the economy,” and predicts that the field will add about 212,400 new jobs between 2008 and 2018.

Average Earning Potential: $35,340 per year.

Associate’s Degree Career 5: Real Estate Agent

If you want to pursue real estate opportunities, an associate’s degree in business is a great place to start, especially if the college or university you choose offers real estate-specific courses. Note: All states also require that real estate agents be licensed – and licensure requirements will vary by state.*

Real estate agents manage and negotiate the sale of homes, offices, and other buildings. They might help people who want to buy a house or help those who want to sell.

Career Growth: While it might seem like the housing market is still on the decline, job growth is projected to increase by 14-19 percent between 2008 and 2018, according to the U.S. Department of Labor.

Average Earning Potential: $52,490 per year.

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