A Quick Dose of Career News for the Week of 01/09/17…
A Quick Dose of Career News for the Week of 01/09/17…
Stuck in your current job? Feeling stressed? A little humor can help bridge the frustration during this part of your journey. Stay strong, keep searching for new possibilities and be disruptive by making a commitment to change up your current situation. Take steps to break free of the barriers that may be standing in your way, repel self-doubt, brush up your resume, take steps to explore new job opportunities, set a date to move on and execute. You are not alone. Your decision to follow-through in creating your best life may inspire others to do the same. Take on this day with powerful words "I declare to take the steps to create amazing results in my career and I attract the people and possibilities into my life for an abundance of opportunity." Take on the day! Start now. #success #lawofattraction #Life #Motivation #Inspiration #lookingforajob #DreamBig #Jobs #Career
An instant career killer that may cost you a paycheck? Inappropriate behaviors that may be deal-breakers during a job interview over lunch.
In a highly competitive job market many job seekers are invited to an interview lunch; the interview is actually conducted over a meal. This tactic separates equally matched candidates from the competition and may come at a high price; getting hired.
Useful tips to kick-start a successful job interview over lunch:
Show up on time and at the correct location. Be sure to map out your route if going to an unfamiliar location. BE ON TIME. Heads up! Some hiring managers select a difficult location and have used this tactic to challenge and determine the ability of a job seeker to navigate effectively.
Tip: When possible, drive by the restaurant the night before and scope out the area; avoid getting “lost” and have a plan for parking, projected mishaps or construction delays.
Unable to resist that piece of gum? Gum chewing becomes an issue when you do not know what to do with that sticky glob once seated at the table before serious discussion. Additionally, the hiring manager or recruiter may face Chiclephobia (The fear of chewing gum.), just ask Oprah Winfrey, no one was allowed to chew gum in her studio when she was a talk show host.
Tip: Opt for mints.
Waving, pointing, or flailing the silver? When engaged in conversation do not wield the knife and fork around as you are speaking. This creates a distraction and is seen as unprofessional.
Tip: Never, never, never, lick the last bits of mashed potato or other delight from the blade of the knife, at the table, during the job interview (or any other time, for that matter…).
Do you salt or pepper your meal before taking a bite? Think again. This action has been known to send a non-verbal message of making hasty or rash decisions and could cost you that job. Why? You “assumed” the meal needed salt or pepper prior to tasting.
Tip: Always sample a small bite before adding salt or pepper. In addition, use caution when dousing ketchup, dipping sauces or other condiments to a meal, it may send off a “red flag” and can be seen as an insult to the chef.
Remember, you were not invited to the meal because you are hungry! Avoid ordering expensive menu items, finger foods and difficult to manage items (ribs, lobster, fried chicken, spaghetti, etc.). Also, if a food item is difficult to eat, you spend more effort on eating the meal and less on building rapport with emphasis on the main mission; GETTING HIRED.
Tip: A salad may be cumbersome, not all leafy greens are cut into bite size pieces; opt for the soup instead.
Avoid alcohol. Alcohol inhibits the ability to recall important details, impairs the ability to remember names (especially in a networking setting), may cause improper conversations to emerge, and is not advisable when being considered for a job.
Tip: Sparking water and a lime make a good substitute.
The purpose of the interview lunch? To determine your social savvy. Many times this form of interview is one of THE determining factors in hiring.
Tip: You are an extension of the company brand when hired; demonstrating good manners set you apart from the competition. It is NOT about the food; it is about the relationship building process and “how to be” may determine “cultural fit” depending on the industry and/or position you are seeking.
These are just a few dining etiquette fundamentals and if traveling abroad be sure to research each culture and the differences when conducting business or a job interview over a lunch or a meal. Good luck!
The job interview process is a two-way street; dialogue is the key to a successful encounter.
Remember the Five “P’s”, Prior Preparation Prevents Poor Performance.
Questions for consideration include:
1. What happened to the previous employee or why is the position available?
This will allow you to determine if the employee was promoted (This is a good sign and may indicate future opportunity if the company promotes from within.) or did they move on (This will indicate that you may have to dig deeper in your questioning to determine management style and corporate culture to determine “fit”.) or is the job a newly created role and the question can reveal the amount of turnover in the position. Beware: If the position has had five people in that role in the last four years this may be a “red flag”, especially if they are no longer with the company, it could signal management or leadership concerns, etc.
2. What type of on-boarding or initial training is provided to ensure success? Does (insert name of organization) support continuing education or certifications?
This question allows the company to express the fundamentals they have in place to ensure your success through a detailed on-boarding and trainee program, continuing education, and resources or certifications for continued professional growth and development. Ongoing training programs are proven to increase employee engagement.
3. What is the preferred management style of the (insert department, company, etc.)?
This will determine if the role is that of a “worker bee” with minimal contribution or does the culture support input allowing you to contribute concepts and ideas for growth and development of your role and the organization.
4. Would you paint a picture of the typical day in the role of a (insert job title)?
This will allow the organization to provide a snapshot of the role and what you can expect. Look for defined, confident replies. Some companies allow for job shadowing to determine if a role is a good fit for you and the company.
5. What challenges/problems/concerns are associated with (insert the department, the role, the company)?
This will reveal the pain they need to address and may open the opportunity for you to share background, skills, or abilities that may assist in overcoming the various challenges revealed and/or mentioned in the job posting. How can you be of immediate benefit to help the team and the company achieve their defined goals and objectives?
6. How are expectations measured?
This will allow you to get a sense of how your progress and success or failure will be reviewed. Does the company provide 90-day feedback and review? 6-months? or Annually? The employee review allows for periodic feedback to assess your contributions and keep you on track for success in your role.
7. What are next steps in the hiring process?
This question should be asked at the end of your job interview. You will gain insight as to the hiring manager’s processes for moving forward and you will be able to navigate your next steps for outreach and expectations. Should you follow-up by phone? email? When will they be making a decision?
It is “OK” to ask questions. It is necessary and required! You are interviewing the organization and their team just as much as they are interviewing you. Why? Because you need to also determine “fit”, to learn if this organization’s culture and leadership environment “fits” with your work style and career goals so that you can flourish and succeed and contribute in a productive and meaningful capacity. Good Luck!
“Never underestimate the power to change yourself; Never overestimate the power to change others.” Unknown
So you think that your co-worker has it in for you; or that a particular colleague specifically wakes up each morning determining how to make your life more difficult? Well, fortunately… they are not that smart. The real issue boils down to communication (or lack of communication) and putting yourself in the shoes of the other person.
75% of most conflict is petty and small. Someone forgot to replace copy paper in the copy machine, or talking too loud on the phone in the next cubicle, interrupting during meetings, gossip, taking the last cup of coffee from the coffee maker and not replenishing, eating a smelly lunch in a common area and the list goes on and on…..
The Issue. Most people confuse personalities with issues, the conflict is not dealt with early on, and that most people do not stay to the facts when addressing the conflict.
Avoid addressing the personality and stay focused on the issue. “Sally didn’t put more copy paper in the copier, she’s stupid.” The fact is she failed to refill the copier. When personality comes into the framework of conflict it breeds more conflict. It will force the person to get defensive and justify they are “right” or “should” or disregard the actual offense.
FOCUS ON THE ISSUE!
Deal with the situation, immediately. Avoid letting the irritation or conflict build and build until you finally explode! Be sure to take the person aside, privately. Ask for a specific time and location to meet and indicate what you want to address, collect all the FACTS, and be prepared to control the meeting.
The biggest failure in addressing conflict is the ability to stay with the facts versus opinions:
Step 1: State the facts of the situation. (“insert name of person, I went to use the copier, and I noticed you were the last person to make copies, and the copy paper tray was empty.”)
Step 2: State the impact it had on you and only you, not everyone in the office. Avoid generalities. (“When copy paper is not in the machine it disrupts my productivity and is frustrating.”)
Step 3: Respect their decision. ( “insert name of person, I can appreciate you are busy and may have overlooked using the last of the copy paper.”)
Step 4: Request an action. (“However, in the future would you please double check the supply before leaving the copy machine?”)
The above formula is useful in addressing conflict that is big or small it allows you to stay with the facts and avoids bringing personality issues into the conversation.
It is true, that some conflict may never be resolved but it can be managed. However, it is important to address the situation immediately to ensure the ability to move forward. Avoid falling into the “passive aggressive”, trap.
The pitfalls of not dealing with conflict is costly! Lack of trust, lack of respect, impact on productivity, not feeling valued are just a few of the affects of poorly managed conflict in the workplace. You can gain greater control and the ability to express yourself, honestly and respectfully, will lessen stress and anxiety when dealing with coworkers. Good luck!