Job Search Advice

References: They’re Like Yelp for Your Resume

June 29, 2015
hand holding up pinky finger

Ever made plans to go to a restaurant only to have your mind changed by the reviews online? Or maybe you’ve been on the fence about whether to buy something until a friend said such great things about it that you went online and ordered it right away. Other people’s opinions matter to us, and that is why references can be your greatest secret weapon. References are like Yelp, for your resume.

The References section of the application is the employer giving you the opportunity to assemble the perfect team of reviewers to help them make decisions when they aren’t 100 percent convinced that you’re the person for the job. Your references are your advocates. They are people who believe in your character, abilities, or proven track record of reliability. Choose wisely. Understand what role your references play. Make sure you have your references’ approval to list them, make sure they know what position you’re going for, and make sure they sound good on the phone. The last thing you want is an employer to have a poor experience with a reference. Your references are a reflection of you. Make sure they show the best possible professional side of you.

“From an employer’s perspective, if you pay attention to detail by preparing your references, you’re also likely to show attention to detail when working with patients.”

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Careers, On the Job

8 Ways to Manage Your Workday

June 26, 2015
multiple sticky notes make an image of a light bulb

No matter that type of environment you work in, chances are you have a myriad of tasks to complete on a daily basis. It can feel overwhelming knowing you have so many tasks to do and only 8 hours in which to do it. Here are a few suggestions to help manage your time wisely.

1. Wear a watch.

This may seem simple and maybe even silly considering we all have smart phones that give us the time. However, every time glance at your cell, you run the risk of finding a distraction with the constant notifications and new texts and emails flooding your inbox. A watch can help you stay on task, while your cell rests out of sight.

2. Utilize Outlook Calendar or iCal.

Use any calendar application that allows you to log not only meetings and deadlines, but daily tasks and projects as well. Take it old school with a day planner if you are more of a visual person or if you want to physically write down items that need blocks of time allocated for completion. If you have a super important task that needs done, schedule time to do it, rather than hoping you can squeeze it into your day. Print off the calendar and carry it with you to meetings so you are aware of what is next on your daily schedule.
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On the Job

Focusing in a Loud Office Environment

June 25, 2015
illustration of people with thought bubbles, multiple colors

Whether it’s a co-worker singing or taking a conference call from their desk, working in an open office environment can sometimes be distracting and disturbing to your work day. If you’re looking for ways to focus on your work without straining your professional relationships, try the following tips.

Use headphones.

Although it’s still noise, picking your favorite calming music may be less distracting than your co-workers. Some people also find it easier to concentrate when listening to music without words, so maybe try classical music. Internet radio stations are a great source for all kinds of genres and styles of music.

Go for a quick walk.

If you’re feeling frustrated or unable to complete your work, sometimes going for a quick walk will help clear your head and help you refocus when you get back. Also, by the time you return, your co-worker may have wrapped up their distracting activity.

Snack on some chips.

The loud chomping may help drown out the noise and help you concentrate.
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Job Search Advice

How to Overcome Interview Anxiety

June 19, 2015
Questions mark that looks like woman's profile

I spend the majority of my time coaching women through the career launching process. We work together on all the little things that come BEFORE the interview; everything from knowing all the different job titles they’d be qualified for, to how to navigate most hospitals’ human resources departments, to how to introduce themselves to local offices in case those offices decide to hire in the future. Once we are able to find an office who is interviewing, some of the women I work with start to feel really anxious, they start to feel like they are about to be judged and are almost certain that the judge will not be kind. I’ve had women actually avoid my phone calls for months because they are so afraid of the voice of “the judge” that they fear they will face in the interview. The Interview is just the door though.

The interview is like the door that Alice (from Alice in Wonderland) has to go through in order to make it to Wonderland. The movie isn’t about the door at all. The movie is about something altogether different, but her willingness to adjust herself, to make herself bigger or smaller, to notice what’s working and what isn’t, is what gets her through the door so that the REAL story can start. A favorite columnist of mine, James Altucher, says:

“Anxiety is the doorknob. The doorway leads to change. But you have to open the doorknob first.”

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Job Search Advice, On the Job

Your Rights as an Interviewee/Employee

June 24, 2015
gavel and stethoscope

As a Professional Career Service Advisor, I often hear employers asking illegal questions of myself and the graduates I coach. As a job seeker, you should know what an employer is not allowed, legally, to ask you. In fact, it could give you an advantage by declining to answer.

Read through the information below. You have the right to know your rights.

“How old are you?”

Don’t answer that. The Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967(ADEA) protects individuals age 40 or over from employment discrimination based on age. The ADEA’s protection is applicable to employees as well as job applicants. The ADEA also stipulates that it is unlawful to discriminate against a person of his/her age, with respect to any term, condition or privilege of employment. This includes hiring, training, job assignments, compensation, layoffs and terminations.
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Job Search Advice

Preparing for an Interview: Key Questions (Part 2)

June 23, 2015
question mark that looks like woman's profile

As a Career Advisor and unofficial life coach who helps recent graduates, I’ve learned to pick up on some of the most important questions employers want to know. I’ve spent more time talking to employers after the interview than most of us ever spend getting interview feedback in our lives. I coach grads with no experience, with severe anxiety, with no confidence, with physical hurdles, and with no professional “etiquette know-how.” I’ve found that helping people get interviews before their mind is right is pointless. Not only is it pointless, it’s much more stressful and discouraging than it needs to be. In order to interview well- you need to be able to answer these questions for yourself. Your mind/character is your strongest asset. Decide now to develop your strongest asset. Work through each of the major questions that employers REALLY want to know:

Who are you?

Can I trust you?

Will you bring my office more respect?

Do you care?

Will you bring my office/company more respect?

The new bottom line in health care is that people don’t go to the doctors any more JUST to fix a problem. They go to figure out what the problem is and who can solve it with the highest level of care. In environments like this–TRUST is the most important kind of currency any office can have. Where Trust lives, Respect paved the way. Are you going to be the kind of person that makes sure to pave every interaction with respect? Are you going to be the kind of person that your team can count on to build trust in every interaction, even when no one is looking? Or are you going to be the kind of person that does the minimum required to maintain your own self? The kind of person who tells patients enough to make them go away, but not to actually help them?
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Job Search Advice

Preparing for an Interview: Key Questions

June 22, 2015
question mark that looks like woman's profile

As a Career Advisor and unofficial life coach who helps recent graduates, I’ve learned to pick up on some of the most important questions employers want to know. I’ve spent more time talking to employers after the interview than most of us ever spend getting interview feedback in our lives. I coach grads with no experience, with severe anxiety, with no confidence, with physical hurdles, and with no professional “etiquette know-how.” I’ve found that helping people get interviews before their mind is right is pointless. Not only is it pointless, it’s much more stressful and discouraging than it needs to be. In order to interview well- you need to be able to answer these questions for yourself. Your mind/character is your strongest asset. Decide now to develop your strongest asset. Work through each of the major questions that employers REALLY want to know:

Who are you?

Can I trust you?

Will you bring my office more respect?

Do you care?

Who are you?

One of the toughest questions to answer, especially if you haven’t interviewed in a while is “So tell me about yourself”! That’s when many of us stumble all over our words and start telling our personal life story- which rarely helps us (link to article about what employers are legally allow to ask). If you know your goal ahead of time: to show them a professional, driven, extensively-trained individual looking for stable and long term work with an office that allows you to contribute and to grow, it gets much easier!
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Job Search Advice

3 Common Job Search Mistakes

June 18, 2015
Sticky note with Hire Me written on it.

Even the best job searchers tend to make a mistake here and there, especially if they’ve been out of the job hunt for awhile. The rules of this search are constantly changing as new trends and forms of technology pop up. In today’s world, most people know the career market is extremely competitive. The last thing you want to do is make simple job search mistakes that could lessen your chances of getting an interview. Consider these tips to help you avoid a few common pitfalls.

1. Not highlighting relevant experience.

Many people will send a generic cover letter and resume via email and believe that it will ensure they’re getting an interview. Even if you have tons of experience in this field, using this method isn’t always effective.1 People often forget how many applicants employers have to sort through. If you don’t make your relevant experience clear right away, you might be placed in the “no” pile. Write a cover letter tailored directly to a certain company or put a section in your resume showing your experience in that specific field. This could help your chances of getting a callback.

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On the Job

[Video] Be More Productive in a Minute

June 17, 2015

 

Everyone wants to be more productive, but he or she often feel like there isn’t enough time to do all the tasks in a day. Well, what if improving your productivity levels only took a minute?

Here are a few tips on how to make yourself more useful by taking a single minute out of each day.

Don’t try to remember to do things in your head. Keeping your mind clogged with reminders may just cause you to forget them or focus on them too much. Instead, write them down. Depending on what you need to do that day, it may even take less than a minute.

Don’t immediately check your email when you wake up in the morning or first get to the office. Though it’s good to stay on top of emails, they can sometimes be distracting and take your mind off of what you need to get done that day.

Lastly, take a few breaks. Several studies have shown that a quick bathroom break or walk around the office can actually make you more productive than continually trying to work.

Thanks for watching and use these tips to help improve your productivity