Monday, August 13, 2018

8 Things To Consider When You Get a Job Offer



Congratulations! After a lot of hard work, an employer has extended a job offer to you. But before you go out for a celebratory dinner, there’s more hard work ahead. Here’s what to do when you get a job offer:

1. Use your manners.

What do when you get a job offer? Well, first things first—say thank you. It sounds simple, but many job seekers forget this step, and it sets the wrong tone with the employer. If you decide to accept the offer, send thank-you emails to those who met with you during the interview stage, and note how much you appreciate the opportunity.

2. Get the offer in writing.

A verbal offer is nice, but a job offer is only as strong (read more here)

Wednesday, August 8, 2018

Don't Go to a Job Interview Without Doing These Things First



When you get a job interview, the worst mistake you can make is just trying to “wing it,” no matter your level of experience or the skills you possess. Interviewing requires preparation and practice, and those that put in the effort are much more likely to get the job they desire.
While there is no “best” way to handle interview preparation, there are steps that need to be taken to boost your chances of success. For example, you need to make an honest assessment of your skills, experience, and accomplishments while also doing your homework to learn everything you can about the employer. This may take time, but remember that every interview is a learning experience, and your interview preparation work lays an important base for all interviews yet to come.
Here’s a checklist of interview preparation items to consider:

Clean up your online presence

Check your privacy settings on all social media pages (read more here)

Monday, August 6, 2018

5 Everyday Habits That Can Quickly Derail Your Career



It's often the simple things at work that can really cause the most problems for your career. While you may be sweating over the big presentation you're giving next week, it's really something else that has caught the attention of others in your workplace.

Your feet.

Yes, it's sandal season, and it's blazing hot outside. You grab your favorite pair of  flip-flops because the dress code is really no big deal at work.

But, your feet.

It's first noticed by the woman in the next cubicle. Then, the guy sitting by you in a meeting notices. Before long, there's an IM storm going around about your feet.

Long, unclean toenails. Calloused skin. Hairy toes. What is wrong with you? your co-workers wonder. How oblivious are you to those feet? Those feet are with you all day -- don't you even notice?

But this is when the real professional trouble begins. Now your colleagues are wondering: If you don't notice your gross feet, what else are you missing? Should they be concerned you won't do a good job on the big project? Should they let you even talk to important clients?

Like I mentioned earlier, it's often the little things that can cause big problems at work. In the interest of saving your career and letting you focus on important matters at work, here are the little things you need to avoid:

1. Not cleaning up after yourself. Whether it's in the bathroom or the break room or your cubicle, no one wants to have to deal with your dirty dishes, food scraps, moldy coffee cups or any other detritus. At work, people equate sloppy habits with sloppy work.

2.  Always being late. Everyone has issues that can cause them to be late every once in a while, but colleagues have very little tolerance for someone who is chronically late. It's seen as a power play to get everyone to march to your tune, and they will quickly grow resentful and start finding ways to make you pay, whether it's excluding you from communications or mentioning it to the boss.

3. Phone addiction. I know even the most rabid phone users who are annoyed when a colleague is always looking at his phone and can't hold one conversation without constantly checking it. Start breaking this bad habit by turning off notifications when you're having conversations, or sticking the thing in your pocket and leaving it there while someone is talking to you.

4. Bad speech habits. One weird habit I've noticed lately is people starting every answer with "So." If I ask, "How are you?" I get a reply of, "So, I feel pretty good today." It's a crutch, and one that becomes annoying over time, as does using "like" or "you know" or "uh" too much.

5. Social media. Some jobs require you to use social media to promote your product or service. No one begrudges you using social media in these cases. But it peeves colleagues when they're waiting on some information from you and when they come to ask you about it, you're checking Instagram or Facebook or Twitter to see what your friends or family are doing. Any personal interactions --  whether it's on the phone or through texts or social media -- should be rare outside of lunch or break times.

You may not care whether your colleagues like your behavior -- or your footwear -- and just ignore them. But I can promise you that when colleagues get annoyed like this, they start to drop hints with the boss about your behavior or performance. When the boss has to stop what she's doing to listen to such comments, it's only a matter of time before she also gets annoyed with your lack of awareness. Then, my friend, you've got real trouble.

Wednesday, August 1, 2018

Microsoft Finds the One Thing That Matters Most to New Hires



As the competition for workers heats up, employers are offering better benefits and pay in an effort to attract job candidates.

The problem is that once a new worker is on board, then things may start to fall apart -- often within the first week. Many new workers are thinking to themselves: "Wow, I think this was a mistake," and may even begin job hunting again, knowing that there are plenty of employers out there who want them.

Why do new workers feel this way? Often, it's very simple: They don't feel a connection to the new job or the people or the organization. The quickest way to remedy that, finds a recent study, is for the manager to meet one-on-one with the new worker.

A Microsoft study found that it's often the "little things" that matter most to new hires: a working computer, immediate access to the building, email and intranet on the first day of work. That way, the employee feels productive immediately, and also begins to tie into the shared goals of the organization.

Looking at the engagement of about 3,000 workers, Microsoft finds that the really critical key is for a new employee met with a manager during the first week. When that happens, then the company saw key growth for the employee in building an internal network, higher-quality meetings and greater collaboration with team members.

Let's look at it another way. When you invite someone to your home for dinner, you don't let this person into your home, then turn around and go lock yourself in the bedroom to read or play Fortnight. You wouldn't expect this person to make his own dinner, clean up afterward and then find his way home without any contact from you. It's ridiculous -- and so is the practice of new employees never being personally welcomed by the boss and spending that one-on-one-time.

As the Microsoft researchers note, it's a pretty simple idea, but one that many bosses miss.