Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Self Motivation

Nobody can’t motivate you, yes it comes internal
By Vinod Bidwaik
There is a long debate on motivation. Managers, leaders are expected to motivate their employees. Companies introduce Rewards and Precognition schemes to motivate their employees. People are definitely motivated and such schemes also shows good results for time being. But still most of the times people are not enough motivated, they further expect something different.
Motivation is an urge to do something  Self-Motivation is an urge to drive oneself, which pushes him up towards his needs, wants and desires. Nobody can’t motivate you, you yourself has to motivate you. There are lot of theories on motivation. Lot of research on motivation is available on Google  but still people are not motivated. People are still not 100% happy. Organizations will ensure the motivation of people, but why people expect external motivation. I do agree that people should be motivated, but where their self motivation goes?
The main problem is they are not aware what they want in their life. So everybody should ask the question, why I need to be motivated..
Why Self Motivation?
Self- Motivation is needed for following purpose in life.
 We need to be self-Motivated because
a)    We have our goals in life and our goals have to be achieved by ourselves only.
b)   We have our dreams in life and our dreams have to be fulfilled by ourselves only.
c)     We have to make things happen and we ourselves has to do something to make it happened.
d)     To do all in life, we should know how our life going? Nobody will keep a track of our life; we ourselves have to keep the right track of our goals dreams and efforts.
If we are responsible for our actions and our life, the question is how external factors will keep us motivated?

Monday, December 24, 2012

Your Time Will Come... Don' Quit

I quit my job, my relationship, my spirituality. I wanted to quit my life. I went to the woods to have one last talk with God. 

"God", I said. "Can you give me one good reason not to quit?" 

His answer surprised me. "Look around", He said. "Do you see the fern and the bamboo?" 

"Yes", I replied. 

When I planted the fern and the bamboo seeds, I took very good care of them. I gave them light. I gave them water. The fern quickly grew from the earth. Its brilliant green covered the floor. Yet nothing came from the bamboo seed. But I did not quit on the bamboo. 

In the second year the Fern grew more vibrant and plentiful. And again, nothing came from the bamboo seed. But I did not quit on the bamboo. He said. 

"In the third year, there was still nothing from the bamboo seed. But I would not quit. In the fourth year, again, there was nothing from the bamboo seed. "I would not quit." He said. "Then in the fifth year a tiny sprout emerged from the earth. 

Compared to the fern it was seemingly small and insignificant. But just 6 months later the bamboo rose to over 100 feet tall. 

It had spent the five years growing roots. 

Those roots made it strong and gave it what it needed to survive. I would not give any of my creations a challenge it could not handle." 

He said to me. "Did you know, my child, that all this time you have been struggling, you have actually been growing roots." 

"I would not quit on the bamboo. I will never quit on you. Don’t compare yourself to others." He said. "The bamboo had a different purpose than the fern. Yet, they both make the forest beautiful." 

Your time will come, God said to me. You will rise high! "How high should I rise?" I asked. 

How high will the bamboo rise?" He asked in return. 

"As high as it can? I questioned. 

"Yes." He said, "Give me glory by rising as high as you can. 

So never QUIT…    compete only with the best God created you to be  

Rise as high and as beautiful as only you can!!! 

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Career advancement by the numbers --Steps to help your career in the new year

Let your voice be heard at least 1 time in every meeting.

How many meetings are you in every month? I’ll bet it’s too many to count. And in how many of those meetings can you honestly say you added value? If you are silent, you may as well not even be there. Or worse, if you speak up after the meeting—in the hallway, or among your friends—you are actually undermining the purpose for the meeting.

You may not think you have anything to contribute, or you may be intimidated by other people in the room. But the only way to get past those self-effacing fears is to start talking. Knowing you are going to say at least one thing in each meeting is going to make you listen harder, because you are going to offer an opinion, or ask a question.

When you begin to contribute in meaningful ways to the daily events and decisions, your credibility will grow. You will become someone others turn to—and listen to. This is particularly relevant if you are a minority member of a group. For example, research has shown that women in a predominantly male environment tend to get talked over and their ideas end up being attributed to someone else, because they don’t speak up with enough frequency and they don’t hold the floor long enough to make their point, or pitch their idea.

Get visibility and build credibility by leading 3 initiatives.

If you are a manager, step up and propose something new. Perhaps there is an archaic process that needs to be overhauled; or a sticky personnel issue that needs a better policy; or a quality improvement measure that needs to be created.

If you are an independent contributor (a specialist with no direct reports), assert yourself and get involved in a project that will improve a product or service. Reach out to colleagues in other areas and collaborate on ways to work better across departments.

Regardless of your job title, stand up and offer to lead an effort to make an improvement—whether it’s on your own job, or something beyond your job description, such as recommending a new office supply ordering system.

Speak in front of a group at least 2 times.

It doesn’t have to be a large group, but standing up and speaking in front of any group is one of the best career builders there is. Perhaps you can be invited to speak to your own team, to share what you learned at a conference you attended. Or, maybe you can speak at a department meeting to give a project update. You may be able to speak at an outside professional meeting—introducing the speaker, or announcing upcoming events. Any time you speak, you build more confidence.

If you are a manager or senior executive, presentations are a part of your job. If you are not happy with your performance, why aren’t you doing something about it? It is so important to your credibility, it’s foolish to erode your own reputation. Resolve to get some feedback and work with a colleague who does it well, to polish your slides and your delivery. You may even want to get some professional coaching to take your performance to a whole new level.

Name 5 people you would turn to for help if you lost your job.

Having trouble thinking of anyone? Look around…how many of your friends and relatives were caught by surprise when they lost their jobs? They didn’t think it would happen to them—but it did. Be smart and cultivate contacts long before you need them. Start by thinking like you’re unemployed. Who do you know in your field who has a good reputation and is well-connected? If you called a former boss, would he or she introduce you to others and give you a good reference? If you decided to start your own business, do you have any connections to people who could help you?

Reach out now and schedule a get-together in the new year. Find out what they are up to and be proactive about providing them information or introductions to people who may be able to help them. Good networkers know that you should give before you get. Don’t wait until you need help—offer it first.

Successful careers aren’t built by getting the perfect job in the perfect company. They come from taking the small steps, day after day, year after year. When you look back, you’ll see how far you’ve come—even in one short year.

Your career is your responsibility. Create your own job security by acting more like an entrepreneur at work. 

By Joan Lloyd 

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Story of a Sculptor

Once there lived a very famous Sculptor. He was very proud of his achievements and was very ambitious to achieve more. Once an astrologer told him that he would die with in a few years. 
He was very upset and wanted to outsmart God's decision to take away his life. So instead of spending the rest of his precious time in the service of God, he decided to make 10 statues of himself perfectly resembling the real him in every way, except that they did not have life. When the day he was destined to die, he stood among those statues like a statue. As the astrologer predicted, the God of death, Yama Dharma Raja came to take him and God Himself was very confused to see the eleven statues and found it hard to differentiate the real sculptor from his perfect statues. Yama Dhama Raja meditated on Mahavaishnu and a bright idea came to his mind. 
Yama Dharma Raja said loudly to himself:" One of these statues are defective. Not all of them are equally perfect. "
The arrogant, real sculptor who was pretending to be a statue jumped out and shouted: "Who is a better sculptor than me to say that one of my statues are defective? All of them are perfect replicas of myself."
Yama Dharma Raja's confusion was cleared instantly and he took the sculptor away against all his protest. He tried to resist, he cried, he tried to hang on to his beloved statues, but nothing helped him to stay back in the same body.  
Yama Dharma Raja said: "Nobody can outsmart God. If only you had surrendered to God and spent your remaining life in the service of Him, end of your life in this body would have been more peaceful and smooth and you would have been experiencing eternal bliss. Arrogance and selfishness destroys one. When I was confused, did you see what I did? I meditated on Lord Vishnu and He persuaded me to say that "one of the statues are defective". Now I have to take you and at least in the next life that you will get after experiencing the results of your negative actions in this subtle body, please remember Bhagavan in pain and pleasure alike. He is the only one who can change or not change things."
May Bhagavan bless us with an attitude of total surrender!


Thursday, December 13, 2012

Gift Yourself an AMAZING Cover Letter for the Holidays…

By Jimmy Sweeney 

Do you look forward to the holidays––and dread them at the same time? November and December often blur together as we move from Thanksgiving to the December Holidays. And the next thing you know it's time to celebrate the next twelve months on New Year's Eve!

If this sounds familiar, you, like many people, may be caught in a holi-daze. Cooking, shopping, entertaining, cleaning, and organizing take over. If you're in the market for a new job you may be tempted to put off writing that cover letter till all the celebrations are over.

Don't Give In

Tempting as it might be to glide through the next month, avoid it if you can. The holiday season is actually a great time to keep moving along with your job-search goal. You'll get a jump on all the job seekers who are waiting until January.

While the kids are playing with their holiday toys and games, and visitors are resting or sightseeing, sneak off to another room and spend time drafting a brand new cover letter. Set your sights on what is ahead. Look forward to all the good that will come your way in 2012.
A well-written job-search cover letter is a gift to give yourself—one that will give back to you all through the new year.

Such a letter will:

  • Put you in touch with hiring managers
  • Plant your name in the mind of those who read your cover letter
  • Place you in the running for an interview for a specific job
  • Promote your work experience and skills to decision-makers
Get Started Now

Here are four steps you can take immediately to write the kind of cover letter that will capture a hiring manager's attention, one that will compel him or her to contact you for a job interview by phone or in person.

Step 1. Meet the hiring manager's needs. Show him or her how you, the job seeker, can benefit his or her company––if you're hired to fill the open position.

I'm aware through my friend Rich Lewis, your company CPA, that you're interested in hiring someone to expand your sales territory in the southwest . . . I'd like to accept this challenge. I have a master's degree in Sales and Marketing . . . I opened six new accounts in less than six months while employed by Fenwick and Bolton Textile Company in North Carolina.

Step 2. Ask for what you want.

May we get together in person to talk about how your expectations for the person you hire and my job expertise can benefit your company.

Step 3. State your goal.

I'll phone you by the end of the week to schedule an appointment that works for you. If you prefer to speak before then, please call or email me using the contact info above.

Step 4. Show your appreciation.

Thank you for the opportunity to introduce myself. I'm enthusiastic about meeting in person to see how I might help fill the opening and enhance the vision of your company.

Keep in mind that hiring managers need you to do their job. They must hire people to fill the available positions. Make them look good by showing the benefits you can bring.

Let your cover letter work for you, not against you. Focus on the hiring manager's needs and in turn, he or she will give you what you want—an interview for the job of your dreams.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Has the water entered my ship? (A lesson from the ship)

In 1923, nine of the wealthiest people in the world met at Chicago's Edgewater Beach Hotel. Their combined wealth, it is estimated, exceeded the wealth of the Government of the United States at that time. These men certainly knew how to make a living and accumulate wealth.

Attending the meeting were the following men:

1. The President of the largest steel company,
2. The President of the largest utility company,
3. The President of the largest gas company,
4. The President of the New York Stock Exchange,
5. The President of the Bank of International Settlements,
6. The greatest wheat speculator,
7. The greatest bear on Wall Street,
8. A member of President Harding's cabinet.
9. The head of the World's greatest monopoly

That's a pretty impressive line-up of people by anyone's yardstick.Yet, let’s examine what happened to them 25 years later:

1. The President of the then largest steel company (Bethlehem Steel Corp), Charles M Schwab, lived on borrowed capital for five years before he died bankrupt.

2. The President of the largest utility company, Samuel Insull, died penniless.

3. The President of the then largest gas company, Howard Hubson, went insane.

4. The then President of the New York Stock Exchange, Richard Whitney, was sent to jail.

5. The President of the Bank of International Settlement, Leon Fraser, committed

6. One of the greatest commodity traders (Wheat Speculator) , Arthur Cutten, died insolvent.

7. The greatest “bear” on Wall Street, Jesse Livermore committed suicide.
8. The member of the US President’s Cabinet (the member of President Harding's cabinet), Albert Fall, was pardoned from jail just to be able to go home and die in peace.

9. The President of the then world’s greatest monopoly, Ivar Krueger, committed

What they forgot was how to "make" life while they got busy making money! Money in itself is not evil. It is only a medium of exchange. We need two kinds of education.One that teaches us how to make a living and the second how to live.

Many of us get so engrossed in professional life that we neglect our family, health, social responsibilities.And when asked why we do it, we would reply "For our family".

However, our kids are sleeping when we leave home. They are sleeping when we come home, 25years later, we’ll turn back and they’ll be gone to pursue their own dreams and lives.

Lessons from a Ship

Without water, a ship cannot move. It needs water but if the water gets into the ship, it will face existential problems. What was a “means of living”becomes a “means of destruction”.

Similarly we live in time where earning is a necessity but let not the  earning enter our hearts, for what was once a means of living will surely become a means of destruction for us as well!

So take a moment to ask yourself “Has the water entered my ship?”

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Wonderful Story with Powerful Lesson

A woman baked chapatti (roti) for members of her family and an extra one for a hungry passerby. She kept the extra chapatti on the window sill, for whosoever would take it away. Every day, a hunchback came and took away the chapatti. Instead of expressing gratitude, he muttered the following words as he went his way:

"The evil you do remains with you: The good you do, comes back to you!" This went on, day after day. Every day, the hunchback came, picked up the chapatti and uttered the words:

"The evil you do, remains with you: The good you do, comes back to you!" The woman felt irritated. 

"Not a word of gratitude," she said to herself... "Everyday this hunchback utters this jingle! What does he mean?" One day, exasperated, she decided to do away with him. "I shall get rid of this hunchback," she said. And what did she do? She added poison to the chapatti she prepared for him!

As she was about to keep it on the window sill, her hands trembled. "What is this I am doing?" she said. Immediately, she threw the chapatti into the fire, prepared another one and kept it on the window sill. As usual, the hunchback came, picked up the chapatti and muttered the words: "The evil you do, remains with you: The good you do, comes back to you!"

The hunchback proceeded on his way, blissfully unaware of the war raging in the mind of the woman. Every day, as the woman placed the chapatti on the window sill, she offered a prayer for her son who had gone to a distant place to seek his fortune. For many months, she had no news of him.. She prayed for his safe return.

That evening, there was a knock on the door. As she opened it, she was surprised to find her son standing in the doorway. He had grown thin and lean. His garments were tattered and torn. He was hungry, starved and weak. As he saw his mother, he said, "Mom, it's a miracle I'm here. While I was but a mile away, I was so famished that I collapsed. I would have died, but just then an old hunchback passed by. I begged of him for a morsel of food, and he was kind enough to give me a whole chapatti. As he gave it to me, he said, "This is what I eat everyday: today, I shall give it to you, for your need is greater than mine!"

" As the mother heard those words, her face turned pale. She  leaned against the door for support. She remembered the poisoned chapatti that she had made that morning. Had she not burnt it in the fire, it would have been eaten by her own son, and he would have lost his life!

It was then that she realized the significance of the words:  "The evil you do remains with you: The good you do, comes back to you!"

Do good and Don't ever stop doing good, even if it is not appreciated at that time. If you like this, share it with others and I bet so many lives would be touched.          

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Avoid These Top Five Resume Mistakes

Over the years as a recruiter and resume coach, I've seen the consequences of poorly written resumes. Unfortunately, most people don't seek professional career help until they experience the frustration of a long and fruitless job search. It's surprising how many of their problems can be traced to the top five resume mistakes.

  1. No resume focus The most effective resumes leave no doubt as to the job seeker's career objective. A one-size-fits-all resume gives the impression that the job seeker is uncertain of his/her career goal. An employer once told me that if a candidate is interested in two completely different positions, he must not be very good at either. If you have more than one career objective, you need more than one resume.
  2.  Lack of marketing strategy Job seekers rarely see their search for what it is—a sales campaign. Think of your resume as marketing material designed to create a powerful first impression and win a multitude of job interviews. A resume coach can help you translate your career history into an effective marketing piece by selling toward the reader's buying motives: solving problems, saving money, or increasing profits.
  3. No accomplishment statements 95% of all resumes lack accomplishment statements. These statements allow employers to visualize your contribution to their company. A resume coach can help you move from a job description type resume to a resume with quantifiable statements that motivate employers to call you before their competition does. These statements can dollarize your worth and increase your bargaining powr.
  4. Lack of resume keywords These days, resumes are screened by both humans and computers. A resume lacking in keywords runs the risk of being read by neither. An average screening of a resume is 15 seconds or less, so more attention is paid to resumes using the same words found in the job description. Candidate-tracking software retrieves resumes by keywords. A keyword-focused resume will put you front and center.
Incorrect resume format Basically, there are three resume formats: chronological, functional and hybrid.

Chronological: The chronological is best known and easiest to write, a timeline style resume. This format works well if your objective is to remain in the same industry or occupation.

Functional: The functional resume places transferable skills and accomplishments at the beginning of your resume. However, a poorly crafted functional resume can be confusing, causing the reader to believe the candidate has something to hide.

Hybrid: The hybrid resume combines the best features of other resumes. It showcases skills and accomplishments while maintaining ease of reading. This is the best format for job seekers of all level, but it is also the most difficult to write.

        A resume coach can teach you how to write your own hybrid resume like a pro that will win responses.
Once your resume is designed to avoid the top five resume mistakes, you will be well on your way to winning interviews and reaching your career objective.

- Deborah Walker

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

You’ve Got Nine Seconds

If you’re talking in more than nine second soundbites, you’re wasting your words, losing the attention of buyers, and positioning yourself as just another long-winded person trying to make your case. From soundbites on broadcast news to politicians delivering provocative statements to posts on Twitter, we’ve become a society that consumes information in smaller and smaller chunks. According to research at the University of California, the incredible shrinking soundbite has gone from 43 seconds in 1968 to a mere nine seconds today. As a result, when you communicate, especially when selling, you need to choose your words carefully while delivering them with impact, passion, and enthusiasm. Not an easy thing to do, especially when you’re an outgoing person whose default factory programming as a human being is to share your gift for gab.

In many instances, less is more and this is certainly the case when you commit to being masterful in conversation. This starts with a belief that what the customer has to say is always much more important than anything you have to add to the conversation. When you speak, your questions must be provocative enough to evoke a thoughtful and detailed response, and when it’s time for you to comment, it’s at these moments that being a “soundbiter” will have listeners hanging on to your every word, wanting to understand and retain the valuable things you have to say.
Becoming an effective soundbiter begins with three simple steps:
  1. Listen to how people communicate in person, on the telephone, and via television and radio. Pay particular attention to those that capture your attention while keeping their comments brief, noticing how they convey their ideas through their selection of words and use of volume, tone, and inflection.
  2. Conduct a personal debrief after conversations you have with others. Pick statements you made during the conversation and develop alternative ways you could have made your remarks in more of a provocative soundbite fashion.
  3. For example, in response to a prospect saying they’ve had bad experiences in the past when working with companies like yours, the long-winded response could be:

    “I’m so sorry to hear that. I often hear this about our competitors. It’s unfortunate that they give our industry a bad name and a tarnished reputation. I know as a consumer myself that these kinds of previous experiences make me incredibly hesitant to go down that path again. I’m sure if you give us a try you’ll find that we do things differently and, as a result, you’ll change your opinion about the value you can receive.”

    The soundbite alternative becomes:
    “That’s exactly why you should work with us. Three of our recent new customers had the same complaint and have volunteered to provide references as to how we are different and better than other providers.”

  4. Strive for progress, not perfection, by using select conversations as an opportunity to practice saying more with less words. Personal conversations are a safe and easy place to start.
- Scott Wintrip

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Salary Negotiation Secrets That Work

Have you ever wondered exactly how someone negotiates their compensation package? You've heard the success stories - individuals who talk employers into giving them thousands more. Salary negotiation is a game - a sophisticated game - but a game nonetheless. You too can acquire the salary or benefits you most desire if you engage these strategies in your next salary discussion.

A win/win approach is required. Use a warm, friendly tone to open the conversation. Try this baiting statement to determine if the employer is willing to negotiate. "Considering my background and experience, I thought your offer was rather low." Then, fall silent. Wait for the employer's next move. If they are open to negotiations, reaffirm the value the employer receives by hiring you to do their job. Discuss the very reasons they've mentioned for wanting to add you to their team. Many times, simply asking for more money will result in a higher offer. If not, draw comparisons to industry and competitors' salary ranges for this type of position. Comment on your ability to become productive quickly. For example, a manager who seeks a $60,000 salary might say "According to my research, food process managers in companies comparable to yours offer salaries that range in the lower 60's. The extensive systems experience I bring and my strengths in streamlining processes and developing high quality, efficient teams are abilities highly valued in the current marketplace." Cite salary surveys in business magazines or trade journals to verify your data. When you're asked for a specific dollar number that you want, speak in flexible terms such as "I was thinking more like 63,000 instead of the $58,000 offered." This allows you and the employer to compromise and settle for the $60,000 you want. Compromise is the end result of most negotiations.

A word of caution-never bluff with an employer and issue a take it or leave it ultimatum. You could be gambling and LOSING the job. Set your bottom line. Predetermine at what level the offer is too low to accept. Be sure to evaluate the whole picture-potential job satisfaction, promotional opportunities, and other benefits offered.

Salary negotiations are worth the risk when the additional compensation you are able to obtain takes minutes and not years to acquire.

-Robin Ryan

Friday, November 30, 2012

Interview is Tomorrow, Are You Ready?

You just received a job interview request from your dream company and they want to interview you tomorrow. Are you ready? 

You're working hard to get an interview so you can get hired. With your career resting on your interview performance, let's have some fun getting ready so you will get hired on your next interview.

Arrange to meet a friend for coffee near your target company. Ask them to interview you. You'll bring everything needed including t he interview questions. All they have to do is show up, enjoy their favorite morning beverage, ask a few questions, and listen.

Prepare like it's a real interview. Tomorrow you could get a real job interview request, just like my friend John did when he got the interview call two (2) hours after he clicked SEND.

Print out the interview questions listed below and bring two copies to the meeting. Your interviewer should ask the questions in the order shown. Prepare your responses in advance. Questions 5 and 6 include probing questions the interviewer should ask after your initial response. This virtual interview is a lot like a real interview.

Also prepare a list of 3 questions you'll use when responding to question #10. Record the interview to listen how you actually perform. For help with the "salary question" .

Mastering this practice interview will make you confident and fearless on your real job interviews, and you'll get hired.

  1. Tell me about yourself.
  2. Why are you looking for a new position?
  3. What is your most recent salary?
  4. Tell me about your experience with _____________ (Insert one job requirement from a position you desire.)
  5. Describe a time when you worked with a team under stress and tight deadlines.
  6. What did you do?
  7. How did you approach the situation?
  8. What did you learn?
  9. How have you applied what you learned in a different s ituation?
  10. Give me an example when you had to handle multiple priorities or projects.
    • What did you do?
    • How did you approach the situation?
    • What did you learn?
    • How have you applied what you learned in a different situation?
    • I'm concerned with your lack of industry experience. Why do you think you'd be a good performer in this unfamiliar industry? (This question is appropriate if you are changing industries.)
    • Describe one of your weaknesses.
    • Why should we hire you for this job?
    • Do you have any questions?
Best of luck on your next interview. It is the most important moment in your search for a better position.

By Michael Neece

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Killer Secret Gets Your Cover Letter Noticed!

Written By Jimmy Sweeney 

Have I got a secret for you! Not just any secret, but a 'killer' secret––the kind that turns heads and grabs attention instantly. The kind of secret that hiring managers can't resist—even when they think they've seen it all.

And the secret is… a smashing title or headline that grabs and holds the reader's attention—that compels him or her to keep on reading your cover letter to the last line. This amazing technique is the needle in the haystack that every job hunter is looking for but can't find. Everyone hopes to locate the one 'trick' that will put his or her cover letter above all the others. Well, now you know it and you didn't have to tear apart a haystack to find it.

How can this killer secret distinguish your cover letter from others?
Here's how. Place a powerful headline at the top of your cover letter. Just above the greeting in your cover letter (Dear Mrs. Smith), place your 'killer' headline in boldface print and center it on the page. (Two lines maximum.)

Here are THREE examples of first-rate cover letter headlines—the secret to landing more quality job interviews:

Three reasons I feel confident I'm the candidate you're searching for regarding the [insert job opening title here].

I have visited the [company name] website and believe I am a great match for the position of [insert job opening title here].

I would love the opportunity to be interviewed in person for the position of [insert job opening title here].

By creating a stellar headline you are attracting attention to your cover letter and bringing it the attention it deserves. Starting your cover letter off with an attention-grabbing headline is a highly effective way for you to stand out from the crowd in a positive light.

Use this strategy for yourself. It can result in many more job interview requests. So do your part today. Create that strong headline at the beginning of your next job-search cover letter. But keep this 'secret' to yourself. Why help your competition? Then get ready to fill your calendar with interviews for the job you've been searching for.

Friday, November 23, 2012

6 Job-Networking Techniques

We all know that networking is the most effective way to find a job. But these six mistakes can kill your networking efforts.

1) Not preparing for the networking event and not having a plan of "attack."

What do I mean by preparation and a plan of attack?

A. Find out who else will be there and what companies/organizations will be represented. (The organization arranging the event should have a guest list.)
B. Learn as much as you can about the different companies.
C. You have to be aggressive with your time, meaning, you must designate a certain amount of time for each individual on your list.
D. You have to follow through closely and stick to the designated time limits with each person.
E. Don't forget to take your business cards with you and use a different pocket for those cards that you will be receiving from others.

2) Taking your resume with you to a networking event.

You might be shocked to hear this - don't take your resume with you when you attend professional meetings. I'm talking about conferences, trade shows, club meetings, cocktail parties and such. Do you really want to be seen as a desperate person who walks around with a folder full of resumes? Do you really want to juggle that folder and worry about whether the resumes get wrinkled or not, how many you can give away and whether the person you gave it to will remember where he or she put it?

(Now, of course, DO take your resume‚ to job fairs and related career-events. Leave them with the appropriate person and don't forget to record who you gave your resume‚ to so you can follow up within a couple of weeks or so with a phone call.)

3) Not having a PREPARED and REHEARSED 20 second "mini" speech/introduction about your expertise.

You cannot just show up blindly, thinking whatever happens will be OK.

A 20 seconds mini speech is not too long. It's just enough for you to articulate your expertise and let someone know what you are about. So, when someone asks you what you do, give her or him your mini speech.

One caution.

Don't be a generalist. Don't just say: "I'm a Process Engineer and I work for Ford Motor Company."

Instead, be SPECIFIC. Say: "I'm a Process Engineer and my expertise lies in providing cost effective solutions to complex process engineering problems within the automotive industry."

4) Not finding out how you could contribute.

Ask questions! Find out what problems the person you are talking to is facing within his/her job and industry. Then, if appropriate, propose your possible solution by lining up your matching skills. Basically, find out how you could contribute, how you could help them solve a problem.

5) Focusing on yourself.

You will come across as far more personable if you ask questions about the other person instead of talking about yourself. Remember that people do business with those they perceive as friendly and those that show genuine interest in learning about the other person. So, by showing an interest in the other person, you will accomplish two things: learn about her or him and about their company's needs and will show that you are personable and a good communicator. So, ask away! You will reap great benefits.

6) Not sending a thank you note.

Send a thank you note to those that took the time to talk with you at the networking event. Thank them for their time and again, subtly, let them know about your expertise.

Say something like:

"Mr. Smith, it was great talking to you at the XYZ conference. As a Website Designer, I particularly enjoyed our talk regarding the future of e-commerce and Internet technology."

By Rita Fisher 

Monday, November 19, 2012

Find the Courage to Leap To a Great New Career

It takes courage to pursue a career you're passionate about when you're already immersed in one you dislike.

When I started my first marketing job in Manhattan in the early 1980s, I loved the pace, big-city excitement and the high salary I was earning. I excelled at my job. Wall Street was booming. As my career progressed, I ran sales and marketing programs for large and small companies. But gradually I began to feel as though I was turning into a corporate emblem.

I'd chosen a career in sales and marketing because I was a "people person," fascinated by how people behave and what motivates them. Yet I found myself in a system where making decisions took so long that an eternity looked short. Day after day I took my assigned place, to work according to rules created by others for endless hours that belonged to others, to achieve the goals of others. I was slowly becoming invisible.

As a symptom of my discontent, I began job hopping. Friends and colleagues would ask, "What's wrong with you?" I asked myself: "Why can't you be happy?" and "Why can't you stay in one job for an extended period of time?" I'd start each job with good intentions, telling myself, "This is it. I'm staying here forever." But a month or two later, I would feel unhappy again. I longed for a better career but had no goal and therefore no plan to implement a change.

When I finally decided I'd had enough, I signed up for a class to learn a new profession, and I switched careers. Suddenly my next professional move seemed clear to me, and I made it happen. Now I love what I do and can't imagine doing anything else.

You can have a career with purpose and passion, too. If you already have the know-how and skills, you may need only the encouragement to follow through on your dreams. Here are three ways to push yourself toward securing a more meaningful career:

Dream again.

Remember when you were young and knew what you wanted to be when you grew up? Are you doing this now as an adult? If not, why? Why didn't you go after what you wanted? What got in the way?

Many professionals who are unhappy in their careers say they can't envision their dream jobs. But when they're pushed to write their dreams on paper, they remember their childhood fantasies.

Be creative.

A businesswoman I know with a schedule that moves at the speed of light speaks regularly with clients who have built multimillion-dollar empires. She loves what she does, but she says if she doesn't find time to be creative, the day has gone to waste. Being creative makes us happy and fuels our soul. Creativity allows us to express our talents and skills to their fullest capability. It takes us away from our problems and makes room for new ideas and perspectives.

To unleash your own creativity, begin paying attention to the inner voice that urges you to paint, write, fix your car or engage in another activity that gives you pleasure. These are clues to where you belong in your career.

Keep moving no matter what.
Countless professionals on the brink of success fail only because they stopped trying too soon. Life can be difficult. We sometimes forget this when the going gets tough.

For example, many executives use the sour economy as an excuse for not moving forward. They've decided that their career goals are too hard to reach, and so they wait for the marketplace to improve on its own. This is the worst decision a professional can make.

Those who are successful in their careers don't give up. They're no different from you or me. The distinction is that they keep moving no matter what. They have good and bad days, but they don't stop trying.

Move forward even if you don't feel like it. Do one thing every day regardless of whether you think it will make a difference. Waiting kills your momentum and spirit. Progress will make your career goals a reality.

By Deborah Brown-Volkman