Resume & Career Advice

May 31, 2011

Tornado Preparedness: How Ready are You?

Filed under: Current Events,Natural Disasters — chris2010 @ 1:58 PM
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May 22 Missouri Tornado

How can you prepare for a tornado as fierce as this?

Imagine waking up one gloomy morning. Despite this, you still consider going to work because you have loads of tasks to finish in addition to an important meeting later in the afternoon. As you hit the streets and head to work, you notice that everyone is in a state of disarray because a tornado is currently wrecking havoc a nearby district. What will you do next?

It is obvious that you are caught quite unprepared. Consider that weather conditions are essential aspect of everyday life and therefore it is a must to check newspapers or newscasts for weather news and storm warnings. Remember that tornadoes usually form after severe thunderstorms so one must always expect a tornado to occur especially if you are living in an area frequented by this kind of weather disturbance.

Moreover, at times of natural catastrophe, it is also a must to always have a contingency plan in mind. Think of a place where you can safely stay for a short period of time. It should be noted that tornadoes are very destructive that’s why it is important to stay away from the area as much as possible.

An adequate supply of food, water and clothing must be ready at any times because it is expected to be cut off from these provisions during and after a calamity. Also, always have a medical kit prepared.

Awareness, contingency plan and enough supply of basic needs are key factors to survival. These factors are also applicable to other real life situations. Remember that tornados and other natural calamity are inevitable aspects of everyday life. Just like in the workplace where an employee could face unexpected challenges on a day-to-day basis that may affect your career. With preparations, such setbacks, although unavoidable, are still manageable nonetheless.

January 10, 2011

How to Increase Your Value While Unemployed


Do you know your best options when facing unemployment?

As tempting as sitting on the couch, watching soap opera reruns and eating microwave popcorn while waiting for calls from prospective employers might be, they’re surely not the best bet to get you out of unemployment.  In fact, your unemployment status might just be the best time for you to increase your value to employers.

The average American stays unemployed for 33 weeks, and unless you do something about it, you could just add “and counting” to that.  When you submit a resume,that eight-month period when you don’t have a job is eye-catching—but not in a good way.  Make sure that that time of inactivity is anything but.

For one, try to find part time or freelance work. Nearly thirty million others do it, so it’s not about the lack of part time jobs.  But even if you are unable to find one, you can also sign up for numerous volunteer work and activities.  Especially when relevant to your skills and qualifications, part time jobs and volunteer work could actually be more than time-passers and resume space-fillers; they could actually convince employers that you want to be productive, and would thus be a valuable employee.

During your “extended vacation” from work, you could also enroll in a few classes or take certain courses that would improve your knowledge. Depending on your industry, there also are certifications and affiliations that would help you advance in your career.  You will probably be hard-pressed to spend on these, but simply consider them investments for your future.  If you are strapped on cash, you could rummage through the web for tutorials to improve your skills.  Take advantage of the time by improving something as simple as your Excel skills, your typing speed, or something else you wouldn’t have time for if you had a full time job.

Also, don’t allow your time off to render yourself obsolete. Keep up with the current trends in the field you belong in by reading industry news, visiting websites, subscribing to blog feeds, or writing blogs yourself.  You wouldn’t want to go to your first interview in almost a year, armed with outdated keywords that would give away your time in the living room.

Finally, use your time unemployed by reconnecting with your networks. Aside from getting news about the prom queen or hearing how your college roommate is doing, you could use your connections to get a job.  After all, eighty percent of jobs are found through networking.  Relying on job postings alone will not remove you from the 9.8%.

In the end, always remember that just because you’re unemployed, doesn’t mean you should be inactive.

November 29, 2010

Getting the Most of Job Opportunities for Teens

Teenage Jobs

How easy are job opportunities for teens?

If you’re a teenager with little to no work experience, finding a job—and in the process, attempting to beat out college students, retirees and just about every other older person in your city—is strenuous. These tips will help you make it a less stressful journey.

1. Determine what kind of job you want.
At any given point in time—whether the country is in a recession or not—people have always needed someone to wait on tables, flip burgers, operate the cashier, sell merchandise, or just to assist more experienced professionals. Therefore, there will always be job openings. The question is whether it’s right for you, and if you’re the right person for the job. Decide what field you would like to work in—one you would enjoy—to make sure you don’t end up going through the process again in two months. Browse for job advertisements and look at the required credentials. Before applying, find out if your schedule and qualifications are suitable for the position. This would make your job search a lot easier.

2. Prepare the paperwork.
Most jobs that hire teens do not require a resume. A well-written resume, however, will help you stand out from the crowd. Also, check the job postings if the employer has particular requirements, like a social security card, driver’s license, passport, work permit, or a high school transcript or diploma. Also, don’t forget to bring a pen (and a spare one) to the interview. Little things can show your preparedness.

3. Utilize your networks.
Along with the other paperwork, print out your references so you can provide them when asked. Just make sure you inform them in advance. Further, your parents or relatives might know some people from certain companies and could put in a good word for you. They could refer you to a hiring manager or someone else from the inside. You could also ask friends and acquaintances if the organizations they are working for have any openings. You might as well have some use for your 1,000 friends on Facebook.

4. Be persistent.
Finally, show your potential employers that you are determined to get the job. Ask for an interview in a cover letter, send a thank you note after and follow up your application. If a company you give your resume to says that they are not hiring, make sure to present yourself available if an opening comes.

November 22, 2010

Resume Writing with Zero Work Experience

Finding a Job With No Work Experience

Can you get a job with no work experience?

People have the mistaken notion that a resume should be made up mostly of work experience. This becomes a problem when someone without any work experience tries to write a resume to get his first job. With almost nothing to write, should he just list his education, address, and phone number, and hope he gets a call?

Creating a resume is like making an advertisement for yourself. If you’ve worked for a couple of big name companies, then those could be your best selling points. However, they are not the only details that would get an employer to buy. If you have no work experience, you could instead write something about your academic life. Put the clubs you’ve joined or led. If you took electives that relate to the job you’re applying for, then that would work too. You could also include your academic achievements or awards. If you are a member of the student council or have won competitions, you may list those as well.

Outside school, you might be involved in volunteer work or community groups, which you could also write in your resume. If you have completed certifications or trainings—especially those in connection with your potential job—then those would also be beneficial. If you maintain a blog or have put up a website, you could write that too. That doesn’t end there. You can even include certain abilities that relate to the job. Find out what the employer is looking for, and write in your resume how your character and qualities answer that call.

Nevertheless, your resume shouldn’t look like a jumbled list of everything you’ve done since you were thirteen. List down everything you can—following the suggestions above—and pick the “experiences” that relate most to the job you want. The fact that you were a hit on karaoke night would not exactly help you get the attention of potential employers. Determine which ones actually show that you’re the perfect fit for the person the company is looking for, and illustrate them in your resume using experiences that you might not have been paid for, but you have definitely learned something from. You may have no work experience, but these experiences would certainly work too.

November 17, 2010

Home Based Employment: Make Money From Home

Work From Home and Make Money Through Telecommuting.

Would you prefer to work and make money from home?

Barbara found herself at a loss for words when one Sunday morning, while having family break with her husband, 8 year-old daughter and 5 year-old son, her kids were asking what time she and her husband would go to work. “What time are you and Dad leaving for work Mommy?” Mary asked. “Mom is not going to work,” she replied. “Oh, we were excited to spend time with Michelle (the nanny) today,” shares Martin, “Why don’t you work today, so that Michelle could come?” “Don’t you like Mommy to be here?” Mary quickly answered. “We’re used to Michelle being here.” Barbara’s heart broke and new she had to stay home to win back her children’s heart.

A neighbor of Barbara’s neighbor Susan was having the same dilemma a couple of months back, but is now staying at home while still helping her husband earn their living. Barbara asked Susan how she does it. “Home based employment.” Susan explained. Although Barbara knew about home based employment, she did not know how promising and lucrative home-based employment can be. Home-base employment refers to income-generating activities that can be done at home— baking, flower arrangement, pottery and online services are only a few of these home base employment. Since baking cookies and pastries are no longer in demand, Susan suggested that Barbara to choose online work, which she can easily do while her children are in school or asleep.

There are a number of online home-base works that people can chose from—telemarketing, data entry, online writing, etc. Typing in online home-based employment will reveals thousands of job and income generating opportunities online. In fact, with the number of job opportunities in online home-based jobs, many professionals and students have online jobs as ‘sideline, part time jobs.’ There are many freelance data entry encoders, writers, transcriptionists, editors, researchers, telemarketers and many others. The benefits of this online home-based employment are the flexibility of time, low to zero financial capital and a promising daily, weekly and monthly income.

Barbara was glad to know that many mothers who do online home based work are earning good. Susan, an online writer, earns up to $10,000. Susan shares that in an online home- based employment, earning can depend on how much work and time one can dedicate on it. Barbara is now very successful in online home-based employment.

October 25, 2010

Managing Stress at Work

Work Stress Relief

Will a stress test show that you’re working at your best?

Imagine yourself as a young professional trying your best to climb the career ladder by working long hours, taking in new projects and missing out on those fun family weekends. But despite these efforts, you feel that your immediate supervisor fails to notice your relevance in the company.

Stress at work is commonplace. It affects everyone. From rank-and-file staff to top executives, all experience stress in different points of their professional lives. But stress should never be the reason for someone to buffer and bank off all those career plans. While stress is inevitable, there are a couple of ways to manage it.

The simplest way to handle stress is to organize your surroundings. At office, you can arrange the papers and other office stuff at your desk. Organizing a workspace serves as a constant reminder that you are in control of everything despite how the situation may appear bad. Another easy way to cope with stress is to find way to break the ice. You can crack jokes with your officemates during break times or share any funny stories with them. Finding humor at a stressful situation defocuses the mind from work and mirrors your ability to look for the brighter side. But the easiest way to cope with stress is to talk about it with friends and trusted workmates. By sharing stories about the challenges of life (and work), people around you will develop a special bond with you that will surely ease the burden of the odds ahead.

On a more serious note, stress can be managed with proper mind-setting. You must be able to weigh the importance of your goals so that a mere stressful episode at work would not get in the way of your career plans. Moreover, you should be able to build a good working relationship with the people at your workplace. Such working relationship, aside from the fact that it embodies professionalism, can serve as a reason for you to keep on doing your job. After all, it is not actually the salary and the job that makes people stay, but rather, it is the bond with those people. In addition to this, a handful of friends at work can also help you with difficult tasks.

October 4, 2010

Current Employment Trends

Current Trends on Jobs in the U.S.

Do you know the current employment opportunities to tap?

The world has always been dynamic and so is employment. With the Internet age and the tools that empower it, a wide range of new jobs are now available with no need for the degrees of “higher learning” — you can even work while staying at home!

Home-based jobs allow retention in which working parents can perform their duties and childcare responsibilities. The increase in staff motivation is garnered through home-based job as it reduces the level of stress and sickness and lessens commuting time, thus yields to better productivity. Home-based jobs range from telecommuting, technical support, triage, telehealth, online tutoring, telemarketing, medical transcribing, etc. Current trends include high-paying job with low college degrees and extensive requirements. Even if you do not have extensive degrees you can still land a job! These jobs include photography (especially wedding photography wherein the pay is always handsome), tutoring (include arts and music), landscape design, real state, physical trainers, security designing, web design, service technicians, cooking, etc.  Such jobs do not need high educational degrees but gives you the chance of making more money! Green jobs have been on the line too, as it offers work in manufacturing, research and development as well as agriculture. These jobs not only open the door for numerous employment opportunities but also are very much noble for the sustainability of the ecological environment. Think about being on a job while helping transform the environment!

Whether you are looking for a high-paying job without a degree or opting to work while staying at home, the most important thing that you have to remember is that you have to possess the interest in something and that you are willing to work at it with your full potential. The will to learn and to work hard are the key factors that will enable you to be more successful in whatever field you choose. If you research well and are up-to-date with the current employment trends with the right attitude then you can surely hit it big time!

September 20, 2010

10 Reasons Why you are Dissatisfied with Your Job

Job Dissatisfaction

Is it time for a career change?

Are you constantly complaining about how “un-cool” your job is? Do you always find yourself wishing that you are doing something entirely different than what you do at work?  job dissatisfaction is no longer a totally striking issue these days. In fact, work-related researches would tell us that more and more people are becoming dissatisfied with their occupations. You may wonder, how is this so?

Job mismatch is the number one cause of job dissatisfaction. It seems that more and more companies are hiring wrong talents nowadays. Sometimes the training that you have received from the university is entirely different from what your company expects you to do. As a result, you end up hating your job. Your expectations may also be the cause of the problem. Before you were hired, you were excited about your workplace being professional, conducive and your job mates friendly and welcoming. You end up frustrating yourself if they do not meet your expectations once you are already working. Inability to deal with hot-headed clients, stressful deadlines and pressure-filled schedules are also reasons why people do not enjoy their work. Add it with your incapacity to work at your best because of your company not giving you the chance to grow professionally, and you wish you have not accepted the job in the first place. It can also be very loathsome when your values are compromised because of your bosses’ bad reputation and you have no other choice but to stay because there are no other jobs available. Lastly, failure of finding the balance between work and personal life can be very tiring and frustrating. If one feels that he cannot juggle matters of both aspects of life, he loses all his enthusiasm entirely.

Job satisfaction however is just a matter of mind-setting and attitude. Your attitude is your state of mind. How you feel about your job, your workmates, and the people you work for is entirely up to you. So no matter how tiring, how pressure-filled and how stressful your work is, how you view your job is what’s most important.

bosses’ bad reputation

August 11, 2010

Top Companies to Work For

Top Companies: Want to Know the Company That Performs Best?

Check out 2010’s top companies as rated by Fortune Magazine.

The latest list of the “100 Best Companies to Work For” by Fortune Magazine has been released. Topping it are SAS, Edward Jones, Wegmans, Google, Nugget market, Dreamworks Animation, NetApp, Boston Consulting Group, Qualcomm and Camden Property. The results make for an ideal checklist for any applicant; but more importantly, they inform job seekers of what to look for in an employer.

So what does a “best company” have? Among those that made it to the list, an obvious answer is how the company continues to grow. Google, for instance, which ranked fourth from Fortune’s list, is on a continuous hunt for new employees this year, with demand reaching thousands; while the Boston Consulting Group, which is on rank eight, is famous for offering superior incomes and benefits to its employees so that even new consultants get as much as $184,000. These companies are doing very well in the market, and it reflects on what opportunities they provide. Another important characteristic is the growth that a company offers their employees, including the professional and the personal. In DreamWorks Animation, which ranks sixth on the list, the animators enjoy an atmosphere of creativity and openness, instead of pressure and strict deadlines; and in SAS, which occupies the topmost spot on the list, employees enjoy perks such as accessible and top-of-the-line services in health, child care, and recreational centers – to name a few. Finally, one observes the best companies to work for are those that genuinely care about their employees. 94-year old Wegman’s Food Markets, which ranks third, never let its employees undergo layoff. Similarly, Edward Jones, which is at top two, had never laid off any of its tens of thousands of employees – even during the recession . Fortune’s list has spoken: the best companies to work for are those that truly value their employees.

August 3, 2010

How to Optimize Your Resume’s Scanability

A resume has a bigger chance of getting noticed if optimized for scanability.

Do you know what it takes for a resume to attract?

There is a single principle to keep in mind when preparing a scannable resume: stick to the essentials. You should maintain a professional and tight presentation and do away with unnecessary elements, usually included for aesthetic reasons both when it comes to formatting the resume and in deciding for its content.

First off, a scannable resume will require the same content as an ordinary resume: objective, qualifications, work experience, education, brief personal information, and contact details. You still have the freedom to customize the arrangement of these elements according to your particular employment context, but you must make sure to place your name at the very top of the first page of your resume. Second, when it comes to your wording and phrasing, you must use standard terms that are used in the particular industry you intend to be part of – from your academic background to your personal qualities, or your professional skills. You will also benefit from including a section that concentrates on your professional skills. The more key words and phrases you use, the better the computer scanning system will recognize you as a potential employee.

Formatting is equally, if not more important, a consideration. First of all, the font must be in standard serif, or sans serif fonts between 10 to 14 points, and the text body in left or justified format. Keep from underlining, italicizing, or bolding words and phrases and use capitalization instead for headings and emphasis. The use of lines, graphics, signs, shading, bullets, over-manipulated spacing and similar decorative elements is also discouraged. Finally, the paper must be of standard size, ideally 8 ½ by 11 inches and in plain white. Finally, when sending your resume, be sure that it is an original and high quality print, on an 8 ½ by 11 inches plain white paper with no folds, staples, or other markings.

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