Friday, May 26, 2017

High 5 Weekly Career Transitions Roundup: 12 Tips for College Grads Entering the Workforce

This is our weekly roundup of some of the best career-related articles, interviews, blogs, etc., we've read during the week. We share them so you have some great resources to prepare you for the coming week. Enjoy!

  • 12 Tips for College Grads Entering the Workforce: "Make sure to take risks, make mistakes, then learn from them. Each experience, no matter how awful it might feel at the moment, is going to be a powerful learning experience for you in the future."
  • 6 Daily Practices of Great Leaders: "A great leader is always enlisting other people to believe in the dream, shape the dream, stay dedicated to the dream. It’s an honest and authentic and genuine desire to see other people be involved in the process and to enjoy that process."
  • The Essential To-Do List for New Leaders: "In short, you need to establish the rules of engagement out of the gate so people understand how the flow of communication is going to work and how much time you are going to spend seeking input. By managing their expectations, you manage their fear."

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

4 Ways to Take Your Career from Good to Great

It can be easy to coast in a job or feel stuck in our careers but if we want to take our career from good to great it will require action.

However, it might be easier than you think to move your career toward greatness. Implement the following four simple tips and your job and career prospects will be soaring above average.

Get organized. Put the power of technology to work for you to organize your email and other electronic files you use. Develop a system to handle any paper and hard copy documents that pass through your hands, and utilize any effective strategies to reduce waste or eliminate attention spent on time-sucking and energy-draining activities. The more organized you are the more effective you'll be in your work and the more you'll enjoy it, too.

Get positive. Your attitude goes a long way toward determining your success in life and in your career. And the good news? You can largely control your attitude and response to life's curve balls. A positive attitude also increases your energy level and makes you more attractive to your boss and other potential employers. One way to be more positive is to start your day with some exercise and meditation. Even a brief practice of 20-30 minutes can be highly beneficial.

Get a mentor. You can't do this alone and succeed without the support of others. Seek out a supportive mentor who can provide honest feedback and guidance. And meet regularly with your mentor in order to move forward in your life and career, and avoid settling into mediocrity.

Get curious and learn as much as you can. People who attain greatness want to know as much as they can and never stop trying to better themselves. They continually learn new things and seek out unique experiences. A curiosity about the world, other people, and new technology will help you get out of a rut, avoid average, and move your life and career from good to great.

Monday, May 22, 2017

Daily Leap Career Video of the Week: How 5 Entrepreneurs Went From Rock Bottom to Rock Star

Each week we present our Daily Leap Career Video of the Week. The video we share presents news or advice related to career and life development, searching for a job, the economy and employment, and other career-related topics.

In the video below from Entrepreneur meet five entrepreneurs and learn how they recovered from disappointment to build successful businesses and careers.

Friday, May 19, 2017

High 5 Weekly Career Transitions Roundup: 5 Signs You Need to Take a Pause in Your Career

This is our weekly roundup of some of the best career-related articles, interviews, blogs, etc., we've read during the week. We share them so you have some great resources to prepare you for the coming week. Enjoy!

  • 5 Signs You Need to Take a Pause in Your Career: "If someone makes a remark that you're on your phone all the time, or you notice that you can't slip away without checking your email first, you may be getting too much screen time."

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

How to Fire Someone or Have a Difficult Conversation with an Employee

There has been a lot of news recently about some high-profile firings in government, along with some discussion about how best to let an employee go so this seems like a good time to cover some of the basics.

In addition to following your company protocol, when having a tough conversation with an employee or colleague, or when firing someone on your team consider the following basics.

Meet in person. Difficult conversations are best held face to face. This allows you to convey some degree of warmth and compassion for the other person through your body language, in addition to your words. It also provides a sense of dignity and brings professionalism to the situation. Just as you should never break up with a romantic partner by text or email, do not have tough work conversations through these methods of communication.

Stick to the facts. You'll want to focus on the specific details related to the firing or the need for the meeting and keep it simple and short. There is no need to do a lot of unnecessary small talk because the other person will likely need time away to process the information and their changed situation.

Read the situation. Upon providing the news or feedback be silent. Let the other person decide if they want to ask questions or ask for clarification. As noted above, some people will simply want to leave, others might get upset and emotional. Be prepared for a variety of responses and respond calmly and kindly.

Don't make it about the other person. As noted above, you'll want to focus on the specific facts or behaviors that have led to the firing or the need for the discussion. Do not comment on the other person's personality, psychological, or emotional qualities. You are not there to attack their character or personality but to provide a reasoned critique of their work performance.

Follow these basic principles to make a difficult conversation proceed more smoothly.

Monday, May 15, 2017

Daily Leap Career Video of the Week: Advice for Millennials Working at Their First Job

Each week we present our Daily Leap Career Video of the Week. The video we share presents news or advice related to career and life development, searching for a job, the economy and employment, and other career-related topics.

In the video below Gary Vaynerchuk offers some advice to millennials working in their first job and advises them to "put your head down and work".

Friday, May 12, 2017

High 5 Weekly Career Transitions Roundup: 15 Ways to Get the Confidence Boost You Need at Work

This is our weekly roundup of some of the best career-related articles, interviews, blogs, etc., we've read during the week. We share them so you have some great resources to prepare you for the coming week. Enjoy!

  • 8 Ways to Create Momentum: "Not all good habits are created equal. Some are more powerful than others. See the ones that will strengthen your confidence, help you get what you want and result in a satisfying journey."

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

5 Ways to Get Back Up and Benefit from Failure in Your Life and Career

If you succeed long enough in life you're going to fail. A lot. In fact, you might turn that around: if you fail long enough in life you're going to succeed. It is in our failures that we learn how to succeed if we are willing to take those failures and do something constructive with them.

When you fail, and you will, consider the following five ways to benefit from failure in a way that sets you up to succeed.

1. Increase gratitude. When we go through difficult times of failure, such as an unexpected job loss, it can help us recognize and be more grateful for the successes and good things we experience in our lives and careers. The most successful individuals are those that make a daily practice of expressing gratitude and recognizing the beauty in their lives.

2. Clarify and deepen support systems. We learn who we can trust and depend on during times of stress and difficulty. Our close friendships and relationships with colleagues are deepened and made more whole as we vulnerably share with them our experiences of failure and these people become our greatest support as we move toward new challenges and successes.

3. Develop humility. Sometimes success makes us forget who we are, disassociates us from our values, or leads us to treat others as inferior. Failure can be just the antidote we need to deal with an inflated ego and return us to reality, helping us understand anew the good we want to accomplish with others in our personal and work lives.

4. Take time to reflect. Failure often affords us the opportunity to take some time away, to reflect on and understand the reasons behind our failure, and to reset our lives and careers, and renew our focus on our vision and purpose.  

5. Build strength and resilience. If we let it, failure can be a great source of strength, building our willpower and determination to success, and helping us develop the resources to recover more quickly from future setbacks.

Yes, you can do this.

As the Japanese proverb says: fall seven times, stand up eight.

Monday, May 8, 2017

Daily Leap Career Video of the Week: How to Turn Your Fear of Failure Into a Motivator

Each week we present our Daily Leap Career Video of the Week. The video we share presents news or advice related to career and life development, searching for a job, the economy and employment, and other career-related topics.

In the video below from Business InsiderJenny Blake, the author of Pivot, shares some tips for managing fear of failure and how to use that fear as motivation to succeed.

Friday, May 5, 2017

High 5 Weekly Career Transitions Roundup: How to Get the Life and Career You Really Want

This is our weekly roundup of some of the best career-related articles, interviews, blogs, etc., we've read during the week. We share them so you have some great resources to prepare you for the coming week. Enjoy!

  • How to Fire Someone Gracefully: "If you need to talk about how you feel, talk about your emotions with your mentor before having the conversation with your employee. This will allow you to keep a cool head and stay collected, especially if the employee becomes emotional."
  • 8 Things You Should Never Put On a Resume: "Objectives or statements of purpose take up space that could be put to better use ― and your cover letter is where you should really expand on what you have to offer."

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Romance in the Workplace: Dos and Don'ts

Yes, dating a co-worker is common and according to some studies as many as 40% of workers have experienced an office romance. A flirtation at work can certainly make it more interesting to come into work on a Monday morning but there are also some dangers involved and before embarking on dating a co-worker it's best to understand the risks, such as developing a negative reputation in your HR department.

Here then are some dos and don'ts when it comes to romance in the workplace.

DON'TS 

Don't romance on company time. When starting a new relationship there is often a lot of excitement and interest in spending time with that other person, and talking with them as much as possible. Be sure to limit this at work. Avoid private lunch dates that could result in excessive (and unapproved) time away from the workplace, and definitely avoid public displays of affection, while resisting any fantasies you might have about sex in the office. Keep your romance to non-working hours (like evenings and the weekend) and you'll avoid any potential work conflicts.

Don't start a romance with someone who is not available. This should go without saying but only pursue a romance with someone who is single and unattached. In addition to the ethical issues involved, starting a relationship with someone who is married or otherwise attached can result in many problems and conflicts that can significantly impact your work and personal life.

Don't let it impact your work. If you're going to fall in love at work be sure to continue to do your job well. This involves fulfilling your basic work responsibilities and, as noted above, avoiding romancing on company time.

Don't date your manager or someone who reports to you. Avoid the power dynamics and conflicts that come from dating someone you report to or someone who reports to you. This will prevent any ethical violations on your job, such as showing or receiving favoritism when it comes to promotions, opportunities, or pay raises.


DOS

Do watch what you say. It can be tempting to talk about your work days and struggles and it can be a real positive to have someone close to you who understands the dynamics and struggles of your particular job. However, avoid gossiping about co-workers or sharing negative comments about your boss. If your office romance comes to an end some of your words might just be shared with others you work with. 

Do maintain a good working relationship if the romance ends. Most office romances do not result in marriage and so you need to be prepared for the end of the romance and a continuation of an effective and professional working relationship. If this seems unlikely for you it might be best to avoid a workplace romance altogether.

Do follow company protocol and policy. Many companies have policies in place in regard to work-place romance and if you want a future in your company it's best to consider these. Some discourage these relationships while others encourage you to be transparent about an office romance. It is particularly important to consider company policy and consult your HR department if you decide to embark on one of the "don'ts" from above: dating a supervisor or someone who reports to you.

Do take no for an answer. Workplace harassment is a common and serious issue. If your potential partner does not return your interest or decides to break things off after a few dates handle the situation maturely and do not press the situation. If you have a difficult time letting go in relationships that might just be a clue to avoid a workplace relationship.

A workplace romance can help make the job more interesting, and provide you with someone who understands the daily struggles of the job. You might just even find a life partner on the job (like I was fortunate to do).

However, there are negative aspects to office romances and risks involved and it's best to know what you're getting into before you pursue a relationship with a coworker.  

Monday, May 1, 2017

Daily Leap Career Video of the Week: 12 Side Hustles You Can Do From Bed

Each week we present our Daily Leap Career Video of the Week. The video we share presents news or advice related to career and life development, searching for a job, the economy and employment, and other career-related topics.

In the video below from The Financial Diet, Chelsea Fagan and Lauren Ver Hage discuss earning additional income with 12 side hustles that offer the flexibility of working from home.

Friday, April 28, 2017

High 5 Weekly Career Transitions Roundup: Why You Should Have (at Least) Two Careers

This is our weekly roundup of some of the best career-related articles, interviews, blogs, etc., we've read during the week. We share them so you have some great resources to prepare you for the coming week. Enjoy!

  • 11 Habits of Mentally Strong People: "The ability to break the mold and take a bold new direction requires that extra grit, daring and spunk that only the mentally strongest people have."
  • How to Gain Strength from Your Darkest Moments: "When people go through tragedy they often become determined to make some good out of it. They want to do something worthwhile with the time that they have or to honor the legacy of the person they loved and lost."

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Five Qualities to Demonstrate at Your Next Job Interview

Making the right hire is a tricky business and some managers are better at it than others. It can seem that too often hiring becomes a popularity contest or is all about who you know, rather than about what you, the candidate, have to offer.

Here are five qualities that are irresistible to employers and will have you in demand if you can effectively demonstrate that you possess them. And if you're a hiring manager keep this qualities front of mind when making hiring decisions and you'll find more success at making the right hires.

Initiative. Be prepared to provide examples of situations in your career when you identified a problem and went about devising a solution without being told to do this by someone else. Great employees identify needs in companies and find ways to meet those needs. They don't wait for someone to assign a task to them. If you can demonstrate a track record of taking initiative you'll have one foot in the door.

Curiosity. Every good business owner or manager wants employees and staff who take an interest in the company and its processes. Are you someone who gets to know colleagues in other areas of the company and regularly seeks out opportunities to learn more about the business? In addition, show how your curiosity about the field you're in leads you to stay on top of news in your industry, related industries, and with competitors.

Communication skills. In your interview you want to demonstrate how to effectively communicate with everyone you meet. This starts with the first person who greets you at the door and continues after your interview with effective follow-up, including a gracious "thank you" note to your interviewer. Your communication skills should be on display in every interaction, whether verbally or in writing with your resume, cover letter, or follow-up emails.

Project management. Your next manger or supervisor will want to know that when you are assigned a simple task or a complex project that you can effectively manage it and complete it on time and according to any specifications you've been provided. Be prepared with clear examples of how you successfully manage projects of varying complexity, and utilize some of the skills and qualities mentioned above.

Stress management. You might be great at completing tasks and projects but you drive everyone crazy with the amount of stress and anxiety you place on yourself and others. Provide some examples of how you manage self-care, work-life balance, and deal with the everyday stresses and anxieties that come with work in a fast-paced environment.

Be prepared to show how you demonstrate these five qualities at your next job interview and you'll be closer to landing that new job.

Monday, April 24, 2017

Daily Leap Career Video of the Week: How to Find a Mentor

Each week we present our Daily Leap Career Video of the Week. The video we share presents news or advice related to career and life development, searching for a job, the economy and employment, and other career-related topics.

In the video below from Forbes, company founders talk about the best ways to go about finding and approaching a potential mentor.

Friday, April 21, 2017

High 5 Weekly Career Transitions Roundup: Nine Strategies to Find Your Next Role

This is our weekly roundup of some of the best career-related articles, interviews, blogs, etc., we've read during the week. We share them so you have some great resources to prepare you for the coming week. Enjoy!

  • 9 Strategies to Find Your Next Role: "Hunting and applying for jobs online is frequently frustrating and fruitless. The best way to search for jobs online is to become "the hunted" by developing a strong online personal brand."
  • 11 Ways to Stay Productive When You're Tired: "consider switching up your environment at work to keep you energized and inspired. Try doing a couple of hours with your laptop in a nearby café or library, or at least moving closer to a window where the fresh air and daylight can improve your performance."

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Five Tips for Building Mental Strength in Your Career and in Life

It is inevitable that we experience setbacks in our lives and our careers. Success requires failure, and it necessitates failing many times and trying again after each disappointment or difficulty.

A Japanese proverb encourages us to "fall seven times, stand up eight."

We must develop mental strength in order deal with the failures and setbacks we experience in our personal and professional lives if we want to see those failures lead to success and positive outcomes. Too many of us retreat from failure, allowing it to define us, or allow difficulties to make us feel trapped, unworthy, and unable to move forward and reach our goals.

Instead we need to continually work to develop our mental strength and the following five practices will help do just that.

Let go. Put the past behind you and move on from your previous failures and disappointments. Learn what you need from them but don't be held back or defined by setbacks. This might require you to focus on changing your thoughts when you are troubled by the failures of the past. Telling yourself something simple like "that is behind me and today is a new and successful day" can be a effective technique to change your focus from the past to the present.

Practice meditation. Take some time each day, preferably just after you wake up, to set your day with some mindful meditation. Focus on breathing deeply and use this time for prayer or to repeat a short mantra that inspires you. This practice will help calm you, give you greater clarity of purpose, and will put your thoughts in a positive place to start the day.

Surround yourself with like-minded people. It's very important to have friends and colleagues around who encourage and inspire you. Be around people who understand the importance of taking risks and failing, who applaud you for taking action and trying something new. It is equally important to avoid time with people who frequently complain, are negative, discourage you from going after your dreams, or seem to take some pleasure in pointing out your weaknesses and failings.

Watch what you take in. We are what we eat and we are what we consume through the books we read, the movies we watch, the podcasts or radio programs we listen to, or the music we enjoy. Eating healthy food and surrounding ourselves with positive and encouraging media can be a tremendous source of strength, similar to being around a wise mentor or a great friend.

Act and fail and act and succeed, and be grateful for it all. The process of taking some action, of failing and getting back up, and trying again, and achieving some success builds our mental strength and enables us to continue to act, fail, and succeed. Pay attention to the process, and work at enjoying all of it, while expressing gratitude for what you're building and the strong and resilient person you're becoming.


Monday, April 17, 2017

Daily Leap Career Video of the Week: How to Accomplish More by Doing Less

Each week we present our Daily Leap Career Video of the Week. The video we share presents news or advice related to career and life development, searching for a job, the economy and employment, and other career-related topics.

In the video below from Inc., David Pham, CTO/CPO at Mogul, a publishing platform for women, explains his counter-intuitive technique for boosting productivity.

Friday, April 14, 2017

High 5 Weekly Career Transitions Roundup: 5 Career Tips Every New Graduate Should Know But May Never Be Told

This is our weekly roundup of some of the best career-related articles, interviews, blogs, etc., we've read during the week. We share them so you have some great resources to prepare you for the coming week. Enjoy!

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

How to Stay Focused and Organized When Working at Home

Many companies and businesses offer their employees an opportunity to work at home regularly. This can be a great benefit for employees looking for more flexibility.

However, as more employees take advantage of these opportunities, many find that working at home can pose some unexpected challenges.

Here are some tips for staying focused and organized while working from home:

Avoid social media. The temptation can be even greater to check out Facebook or Twitter while you're in the privacy of your own home. Do yourself a favor and don't even open your social media channels in your browser or look at the apps on your phone. You can give yourself some time to take a look during lunch but be sure to log off your social media accounts after your break.

Keep the TV off. You might want a little noise in the background to keep you company but avoid getting that background noise from your TV. The added stimulation of the image can be particularly distracting and cause you to become engage in a show, rather than staying focused on your work.

Use a timer to sustain your focus. Work in short bursts of 45-50 and then take a break. Setting a timer will help you stay on task for a dedicated period of time. This short time of focus will enable you to be single-minded and get a lot done. Take a short break and then repeat.

Give yourself a break. Take a brief break after each 45-50 minute work session. A good way to utilize this break is by taking a quick 5-7 minute walk, preferably outdoors. You'll find yourself refreshed and energized to take on that next task. But it would not be a good idea to take a break by laying down. You just might find yourself taking a long nap and missing the afternoon!

Monday, April 10, 2017

Daily Leap Career Video of the Week: 6 Actions You Can Take Every Day to Build Your Self-Confidence

Each week we present our Daily Leap Career Video of the Week. The video we share presents news or advice related to career and life development, searching for a job, the economy and employment, and other career-related topics.

The video below from Entrepreneur, suggests six actions to take in order to build your self-confidence, including being prepared.

Friday, April 7, 2017

High 5 Weekly Career Transitions Roundup: 10 Verbal Skills of the Most Likable People

This is our weekly roundup of some of the best career-related articles, interviews, blogs, etc., we've read during the week. We share them so you have some great resources to prepare you for the coming week. Enjoy!

  • 9 Tips to Start Living: "
    Everything can become so intense and distorted when you're in the middle of it. Sometimes you need to step away and give yourself room to breathe, to think, to get a fresh perspective."