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Archive for April, 2011

April 29th, 2011 by Juliana Weiss-Roessler   Posted in Career Advice, In the Workplace

istock_000010983802xsmall40 hours. The typical American work week. Already that’s almost a quarter of your life spent at work, and as many of us can testify, that’s on the low end. Work weeks of 50, 60, or even more hours aren’t that uncommon - especially when you’re starting out and trying to prove yourself. And since we’re spending far more time with the people in the cubicles around us than our friends and family, getting to know and befriend our coworkers can make those long hours at work pass by much faster.
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April 28th, 2011 by Robert Moskowitz   Posted in Career Advice, Job Search

Branding solution schemaWith half a dozen qualified applicants for every job, many times the key to finding employment is to overwhelm the hiring manager with the right job skills, and more. You must be able to present yourself well, and also point to “extras” that will lift your application to the top of the pile.

Some of the things you can do to make yourself more marketable include:

Bring your skills fully up-to-date. Computer skills, communications skills, knowledge of industry practices, applicable laws and regulations — these are just some of the vital job skills that can quickly erode or fall out of date. Don’t let that happen to you. As often as possible, spend time talking to people working in your desired industry and job position. Make sure your skills are fully equivalent to theirs. You should also read the latest industry trade publications or other relevant materials so you remain conversant with all the current issues, trends, and future possibilities relevant to the positions you’re applying for.
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April 27th, 2011 by Linda White   Posted in Interviewing, Job Search

The Informational InterviewMy son, a sophomore in college, just can’t seem to take the idea of an informational interview seriously. But perhaps that’s because he doesn’t know their value. Especially in this type of economic climate, the value of an informational interview should never be discounted.

Informational interviews are not just for recent college grads, and doing them can pay off in a big way. Think about it – you are meeting people, getting contacts, and seeing the inside workings of a company. Beyond that, you are also letting them see you. Hiring managers are more likely to call someone who has taken the initiative and kept in touch when a job opens up than they are to invite the flood of a questionable pool of resumes.

It can be difficult to get informational interviews. You must be sensitive to the fact that the masses of layoffs in recent years has meant that for those left behind, they are doing more work, often the job of two or more people. So you have to be very respectful of the time of the person you are meeting with.
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April 20th, 2011 by Juliana Weiss-Roessler   Posted in In the Workplace

Going Green at the OfficeWhether you’re the office manager who’s been put in charge of ‘greening’ up the office or a worker who just wants to do her part for the environment, you may be surprised how easy it is to be eco-friendly on a daily basis at work.  If there isn’t a campaign at work, you can encourage your company to start one by pointing out that most changes not only help the earth but also improve the bottom line. Saving energy is an easy way to bring down overhead costs. Many ways to go green require a small investment upfront but pay off in the long run.

Turn off your computer when you leave. It only takes a few minutes to boot up in the morning, and you can use that time to get a warm cup of coffee or check your voicemail. If you frequently step away from your computer during the day, you can set it to go to sleep automatically after a certain amount of inactivity. Don’t rely on a screensaver, because it isn’t saving any energy!
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April 19th, 2011 by Robert Moskowitz   Posted in Employee Rights, Interviewing

How To Handle Illegal or Out Of Bounds QuestionsContinued from How To Handle Illegal or Out Of Bounds Questions - Part 1

Now that regulations have been put in place to strictly limit what questions a job interviewer may ask, and what a candidate is required to answer, it’s your job to protect yourself, first by learning the legal limits of an interview, and second by preparing to handle both legal and illegal questions.

Last time, we covered two strategies for navigating the treacherous waters of illegal questions: answering directly, and refusing to answer. This time, let’s look at a third strategy that can be extremely useful:

Strategy 3: Try to deflect the question and hope to move the interview toward a more relevant topic. This is often the best way to respond when you think the interviewer isn’t really trying to discriminate, but just stepped outside the legal boundaries by mistake. The basic idea is to answer the question the interviewer should have asked, rather than the actual one he or she did ask. Try to respond calmly and professionally, giving the information you think is really being elicited.
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