Tag: career woman

Portrait of a Modern Career Woman

Portrait of a Modern Career Woman

Ariana is 29 years old, attractive career woman – or rather, she retains the last vestiges of her youthful beauty. OK, Ariana was never a stunner, never a first-rate head-turner. But with her slender body, her long, thick black hair and a mischievous face that suggested a profound appetite for naughtiness, she was sexy.

I use the past tense for a reason. In the two years we have worked together, I have observed a definite depreciation in her looks. In part, this is due to her love of binge drinking. Alcohol remains endemic in many industries in London, not least ours, where entertaining clients is a central part of the job.

Ariana attacked that duty with gusto, and the empty calories she loaded into her system over many drunken nights meant that she ended up carrying considerably more weight than when she started. Not enough to make her obese, but enough to render her formerly shapely legs matronly, and to give her once-angular features a doughy appearance. These unfortunate adjustments amended my rating of her from “would definitely bang” to “would probably bang, provided it were easy and there were no other options available.”

But Ariana was much-loved at work for her madcap ways and the amusing stories that her frequent inebriation provided. For her last day in the office, another (female) colleague prepared a PowerPoint presentation displaying some of her “finest” moments. The slides were largely composed of photographs taken from Ariana’s Facebook page. Many of them featured close-ups of her increasingly bloated, drunken face as she careened from one crazy night out to the next. One slide was dedicated to her love of drinking whiskey. Another to her penchant for red wine. A third focused on the short skirts she liked to wear.

More slides revealed her “yolo” exploits in the various five-star hotels in New York and Berlin the company had put her up in for business events. Her talent for attracting beta orbiters was referenced; and the fact that she had been banged by a male colleague was revealed on a slide celebrating her “horndog” nature. My assembled colleagues hooted and guffawed at these images, while Ariana looked on, held in the embrace of another girl, close to tears at her impending departure.

Tellingly, not one of the slides referred to her professional capabilities. To be fair, her skills were complimented by two of her managers in their summing-up. Apparently, Ariana had proved herself to be a linchpin of her team, and she had been personally responsible for managing multi-million pound accounts. Personally, I am skeptical. I worked on projects with her a few times: she was rubbish.

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What to do for a successful career planning

What to do for a successful career planning

Career planning is not an activity that should be done once — in high school or college — and then left behind as we move forward in our jobs and careers. Rather, career planning is an activity that is best done on a regular basis — especially given the data that the average worker will change careers (not jobs) multiple times over his or her lifetime. And it’s never too soon or too late to start your career planning.

Career planning is not a hard activity, not something to be dreaded or put off, but rather an activity that should be liberating and fulfilling, providing goals to achieve in your current career or plans for beginning a transition to a new career. Career planning should be a rewarding and positive experience. Here, then, are 10 tips to help you achieve successful career planning.

1. Make Career Planning an Annual Event

Many of us have physicals, visit the eye doctor and dentist, and do a myriad of other things on an annual basis, so why not career planning? Find a day or weekend once a year — more often if you feel the need or if you’re planning a major career change — and schedule a retreat for yourself. Try to block out all distractions so that you have the time to truly focus on your career — what you really want out of your career, out of your life.

By making career planning an annual event, you will feel more secure in your career choice and direction — and you’ll be better prepared for the many uncertainties and difficulties that lie ahead in all of our jobs and career.

2. Map Your Path Since Last Career Planning

One of your first activities whenever you take on career planning is spending time mapping out your job and career path since the last time you did any sort of career planning. While you should not dwell on your past, taking the time to review and reflect on the path — whether straight and narrow or one filled with any curves and dead-ends — will help you plan for the future.

Once you’ve mapped your past, take the time to reflect on your course — and note why it looks the way it does. Are you happy with your path? Could you have done things better? What might you have done differently? What can you do differently in the future?

3. Reflect on Your Likes and Dislikes, Needs and Wants

Change is a factor of life; everybody changes, as do our likes and dislikes. Something we loved doing two years ago may now give us displeasure. So always take time to reflect on the things in your life — not just in your job — that you feel most strongly about.

Make a two-column list of your major likes and dislikes. Then use this list to examine your current job and career path. If your job and career still fall mostly in the like column, then you know you are still on the right path; however, if your job activities fall mostly in the dislike column, now is the time to begin examining new jobs and new careers.

Finally, take the time to really think about what it is you want or need from your work, from your career. Are you looking to make a difference in the world? To be famous? To become financially independent? To effect change? Take the time to understand the motives that drive your sense of success and happiness.

4. Examine Your Pastimes and Hobbies

Career planning provides a great time to also examine the activities you like doing when you’re not working. It may sound a bit odd, to examine non-work activities when doing career planning, but it’s not. Many times your hobbies and leisurely pursuits can give you great insight into future career paths.

Think you can’t make a hobby into a career? People do it all the time. The great painter Paul Gauguin was a successful business person who painted on the side. It actually wasn’t until he was encouraged by an artist he admired to continue painting that he finally took a serious look at his hobby and decided he should change careers. He was good at business, but his love was painting.

5. Make Note of Your Past Accomplishments

Most people don’t keep a very good record of work accomplishments and then struggle with creating a powerful resume when it’s time to search for a new job. Making note of your past accomplishments — keeping a record of them — is not only useful for building your resume, it’s also useful for career planning.

Sometimes reviewing your past accomplishments will reveal forgotten successes, one or more which may trigger researching and planning a career shift so that you can be in a job that allows you to accomplish the types of things that make you most happy and proud.

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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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Top careers for better work – life balance

Top careers for better work - life balance

These fields let you scrap the 9-to-5 routine and work a flexible schedule.

Are you tired of the same old, same old 9-to-5 office routine? Want to change to a career with a more flexible working schedule? You’re not alone. More than three out of five working adults agreed that flexibility is one of the most important factors to consider when looking for a new job, according to a recent Business News Daily article.

The good news is that with the right education, you could be prepared to pursue a career with flexibility built in…

Career 1 – Registered Nurse

Want a career that offers a flexible work schedule? Look to nursing. These physical and emotional health care providers generally help perform a variety of tasks – from recording medical histories and symptoms to doing diagnostic tests and helping with patient follow-up and rehabilitation.

Flex Factor: Instead of being confined by normal business hours, registered nurses (RNs) usually have the flexibility to work night and weekend shifts. At Baptist Memorial Hospital-Memphis, Dana Dye, chief nursing officer, RN, says the hospital allows nurses to choose between eight-hour or 12-hour shifts. And during the weekends, nurses could have the option to work 24 hours.

Education: Look into either an associate’s degree in nursing or a nursing diploma from an approved nursing program.

Earning Potential: The mean annual salary for RNs was $67,720 in May 2010.

Career 2 – Dental Assistant

Dental assistants usually play an important role in preparing patients for treatment, sterilizing dental equipment, organizing instruments, and updating dental records. During procedures, assistants usually work alongside the dentist to provide patient care. They also could perform laboratory duties.

Flex Factor: Many dental assistants don’t subscribe to a 9-to-5 schedule or a 40-hour workweek. Some put in hours on nights and weekends, while others work for more than one dental office to form a more balanced work-life routine. In 2008, nearly half of all dental assistants had a 35- to 40-hour workweek, says the Department of Labor.

Education: While there’s no formal requirements for dental assisting gigs, the U.S. Department of Labor notes that dental assisting diploma and certificate programs – which could take as little as one year to complete – are growing in popularity.

Earning Potential: The mean annual salary for dental assistants was $34,140 in May 2010.

Career 3 – Accountant

If you excel at organization and attention to detail, you may want to consider an accounting career. Accountants usually help to ensure that firms are run efficiently, public records are kept accurately, and taxes are paid properly and on time.

Flex Factor: Off-site work and travel for audits are two fun flex factors that can be found in accounting. At Ernst & Young, workplace flexibility has been built into the culture, says a recent New York Times article. Ernst & Young’s Chairman James S. Turley said, “We listen to our people and they tell us very consistently that flexibility is incredibly important to them and to their family.” Nearly 10 percent of Ernst & Young’s 23,500 U.S. employees are on flexible arrangements.

Education: If you want to prepare to pursue this career, consider earning a bachelor’s degree in accounting or a related area like finance or business.

Earning Potential: The mean annual salary for accountants was $68,960 in May 2010.

Career 4 – Graphic Designer

Using tools like color, type, illustration, and various layout techniques, graphic designers generally convey visual messages in a variety of mediums. From designing magazines and promotional displays to marketing brochures and packaging, this career is usually about having an eye for design.

Flex Factor: If working normal business hours at a big design or advertising firm doesn’t excite you, there could be work-life balance alternatives for a graphic designer. Many creative types are self-employed and usually work from home on a contract basis, according to the U.S. Department of Labor. Just note that since this has the potential to be a self-employed position that revolves around production schedules, night and weekend hours could be necessary.

Education: If you want to start a graphic design career, a bachelor’s degree in graphic design is generally needed to land an entry-level position, according to the U.S. Department of Labor.

Earning Potential: The mean annual salary for graphic designers was $48,140 in May 2010.

Career 5 – Police Officer

Uniformed police officers usually protect lives and property by carrying out law enforcement duties. From responding to a traffic accident to confronting criminals, these everyday heroes work to keep our communities safe.

Flex Factor: The prospect of flexible or part-time schedules seems to be attractive to police job candidates – it appears on many career hiring sites, including the NYPD Cadet Corps’ web site. Although police officers usually work 40-hour weeks, hours can be flexible, according to the U.S. Department of Labor. Since police officers provide around-the-clock protection, shift work could be necessary.

Education: Educational requirements vary for each agency – from a high school diploma to a few years of college coursework.

Earning Potential: The mean annual salary for police officers was $55,620 in May 2010.

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Ten ways your job may be hurting you

Ten ways your job may be hurting you

Your office, colleagues, and the air of the office, even may be hazardous to your health.

Employees calling sick normally get most responsible for the loss of productivity, a phenomenon known as “presenteeism” won a notice, as well. Defined as the act of coming to work when you are sick and do work of the third order, therefore, business costs of presenteeism billion a year in lost productivity.

If presenteeism is damaging to business, then it would be logical to think that the work would be better if sick workers stayed at home until they have improved. When the disease is a byproduct of the work itself, however, that the worker will just get sick again and continue to work apathetic and unproductive.

Whether or psychological environment, many places have conditions that can make employees sick. These factors have a domino effect that is ultimately bad for business as for the employee.

What are 10 ways that your work can kill you and your employer?

Lack of Sleep

Doctors recommend having eight hours of sleep a night, but a glance around the office means reveals that, for many it is simply not occur. Bags under the eyes of each and coffee cups drained tell the story, with a recent survey of over 7,000 people, 23 percent of them reported experiencing insomnia.

What causes insomnia? One of the main causes of insomnia is stress, particularly stress encountered in the workplace, according to the Mayo Clinic. Lack of sleep is often not given their fatigue as a reason to call in sick, however, they go to work and in turn, lethargic, sluggish performances that will cost employers $ 63 billion annually in lost productivity, according to a Harvard Medical School study.

Lack of Exercise

One factor often implicated in the current epidemic of obesity is the sedentary nature of many jobs. The unanimous consensus of the medical community is that a passage of 40 hours per week at a desk is a major contributor to weight gain. As the U.S. labor market has shifted from manufacturing to work clerical jobs, the problem has only worsened.

A 2010 study in The Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine showed that obese people were less productive at work than their average weight. The study found that rates of presenteeism went to the body mass index (BMI) was the staff to women with a BMI between 30 and 34.9 6.3 days lost ‘value productivity per year, while men with a BMI over 40 have lost more than three weeks worth of productivity. Taken together, the study estimates that obesity among full-time employees in costs U.S. employers more than $ 73 billion per year.
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Plan a career switch this summer

Plan a career switch this summer

Use some free time to take online classes and work toward a new degree.

Thinking of switching careers or adding some skills to your resume? Looking for the right time to go back to school and get your degree? Summertime may be the right time to get started.

Summer classes are quickly becoming a popular option for college students of all kinds, according to Kyle Brown, director of online learning at the State University of New York (SUNY) at Canton.

Summer enrollment at SUNY Canton, for example, has jumped nearly 300 percent over the past four years, says Brown. Much of that growth is due to the fact that 90 percent of its summer classes are available online.

Want to use the summer to get a head start on your education? We’ve spotlighted some of the fastest growing careers through 2018, according to the U.S. Department of Labor, and separated them into three different career categories. Using this data, we also included the most common degree or preparation needed in each career. Keep reading to see why summertime may be the right time to start these programs…

Head Start Option 1: Health Care Programs

Looking for a red hot degree program to start this summer? Consider pursuing a degree in health care. With health care reform in full swing, it’s an exciting time to dive into this rewarding profession.

Associate’s in Medical Assisting
Medical Assistant – $29,450

Dental Assisting Certificate
Dental Assistant – $34,000

Associate’s in Nursing
Registered Nurse – $66,530

Did You Know? Ten of the 20 fastest growing jobs in the country through 2018 are in health care, according to the U.S. Department of Labor, and nursing and medical assisting careers are on the list!

Head Start Option 2: Business Programs

Looking to give your career a boost? Start the process this summer and consider studying business. As a whole, the industry is showing positive signs of heating up. In March 2011, small businesses in the U.S. added 50,000 new jobs, according to the Intuit Small Business Employment Index.

Bachelor’s in Accounting
Accountant – $67,430

Bachelor’s in Business
Personal Financial Advisor – $94,180

Master of Business Administration
Marketing Manager – $120,070

Did You Know? Personal financial advisors are enjoying a 30 percent increase in employment opportunities through 2018, according to the U.S. Department of Labor.

Head Start Option 3: Technology Programs

Summer is a perfect time to start gaining the skills one would need to start a career in technology, which is an industry always in search of the next hot thing. What it will be isn’t clear, but it’s safe to say that professionals with a background in technology will be behind it, just like they were for Twitter, iPads, and the like.

Bachelor’s in Information Systems
Computer Support Specialist – $47,360

Bachelor’s in Network Administration
Network Systems Administrator – $70,930

Bachelor’s in Computer Science
Computer Programmer – $74,690

Did You Know? Network systems analysts are enjoying a whopping 53 percent increase in employment opportunities through 2018, according to the U.S. Department of Labor.

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Job fields with surprisingly high earnings

Job fields with surprisingly high earnings

You’ll never guess the average incomes in these seven diverse professions.

Career 1 – Public Relations Specialist

Think public relations gigs can’t pay? Think again. Reputation can have a direct impact on profitability, making many companies willing to pay well for PR specialists. In fact, the mean annual wage for this career is $59,370, with the top ten percent earning – on average – $96,630.

Potential career prep: A bachelor’s degree in a subject like communications – plus public relations experience – can provide adequate preparation for careers in this field, according to the U.S. Department of Labor.

Career 2 – Fashion Designer

Becoming a fashion designer is a good gig. It also has the potential to pay surprisingly well. Fashion designers make about $74,000 annually. Most fashion designer positions are in New York or California, according to the U.S. Department of Labor.

Potential career prep: Studying fashion design is the first step. You can earn an associate’s degree or bachelor’s degree, which is what employers usually look for, according to the U.S. Department of Labor.

Career 3 – Art Director

Working as an art director has the potential to pay. Whether you find a position as an art director at a magazine, website, book publisher, or agency, it’s a career that can lead to big bucks. According to the U.S. Department of Labor, the average pay for art directors in May 2009 was $91,520.

Potential career prep: To become an art director, you need an extensive, eye-popping portfolio of work, as well as enough experience to prove you’re worthy of the position. Consider studying art and graphic design in school to get started.

Career 4 – Paralegal

Think becoming a lawyer is the only way to make money in the legal field? Think again. Paralegals, who do everything from interviewing potential witnesses to conducting research and assisting lawyers in general office work, have the potential to earn a pretty decent living too. The mean annual wage for paralegals in May 2009 was $50,080, with the top ten percent averaging at $75,700.

Potential career prep: An associate’s or bachelor’s degree in paralegal studies can provide you with career-relevant skills. If you already have a degree, another option is to earn a certificate from a paralegal program.

Career 5 – High School Art, Drama, or Music Teacher

It’s probably not the first teaching title that springs to mind, but the average compensation is surprisingly competitive for high school art, drama, and music teachers, who get to pass along their passion for creativity to a younger generation. According to the U.S. Department of Labor, the average annual pay is $68,230.

Potential career prep: A bachelor’s degree is a must for this type of position, as is completion of a teaching education program. To become a public school teacher, you’ll need to get licensed to teach in your home state.

Career 6 – Advertising Sales Agent

It’s not just creative types who can make money in advertising. Companies rely upon advertising sales agents, who make about $53,000 on average, to bring in the revenue they need to turn a profit. The top ten percent of advertising sales agents averaged at $94,100 in May 2009.

Potential career prep: You’ll need a bachelor’s degree to work in sales for most employers, according to the U.S. Department of Labor. Studying communications, marketing, or business is recommended.

Career 7 – Police Officer

For police officers, working on behalf of the public has the potential to pay surprisingly well. According to the U.S. Department of Labor, this gig pays about $55,000 on average, and $83,550 for the top ten percent of earners. While no part of a community’s budget is sacred these days, law and order remains a priority across the country.

Potential career prep: A high school diploma and some work experience are musts. According to the U.S. Department of Labor, federal agencies expect a college degree.

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New book shows women outperform men

New book shows women outperform men

A spate of studies prove that females top men in dozens of arenas, including driving.

Contrary to jokes and one-liners, women are better drivers than men. They’re also better at getting the joke. And better with hammers. And video games. And social networking. And did we mention, they get dressed faster than guys? This isn’t opinion, it’s fact, and Dan Abrams can prove it.

In his new book, Man Down: Proof Beyond a Reasonable Doubt That Women Are Better Cops, Drivers, Gamblers, Spies, World Leaders, Beer Tasters, Hedge Fund Managers, and Just About Everything Else, Abrams collects research from leading studies over the past few years to make the case for the ‘fairer’ sex. A legal analyst for ABC News and former lawyer, he approached the topic as a defense attorney, using evidence that already exists to debunk popular myths about women.

How did you decide to do this book?

Dan Abrams: I was hired to write a light article for a magazine about certain areas that women are better in than men. Some of the evidence surprised me, so I went and looked into the underlying research. Most of it was true, some was exaggerated, some anecdotal. But I kept finding more and more real studies and the evidence is compelling when you look at it all together. I couldn’t believe there’s been no major book about it.

Why now?

There’s a lot more evidence now. A lot of the studies from the book are from the last three years. It’s only been in the last twenty or so years, that women have been on a relatively even playing field in terms of work to do many of these studies. We weren’t able to make fair comparisons before, because women were a fraction of the working world. Now we’re see women taking over the majority in many professions. But only recently has there been enough time to look back to compare men versus women and only recently has there been real interest.
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