Category Archives: Career Advice

Simple ways to avoid killing your LinkedIn profile

LinkedIn Etiquette

LinkedIn professional social network provides many examples as to how it can, has, and does open doors and connection for many job seekers. LinkedIn, unlike Twitter and Facebook, is a professional social platform; and if used strategically can help any job seeker with referrals, introductions, and recommendations.

LinkedIn is a professional social media network to make professional connections and the best way for any job seeker to market themselves and build a personal brand. There is no need to create personal websites to show your professional accomplishments. The more connections you have, the more visible your profile will be. The same goes for the followers you have.

However, if you do not manage and maintain your account and profile correctly, it could lead to many brand-damaging mistakes and destroy your profile’s effectiveness if you are job seeker, looking to build your business or wanting to grow your network and credibility in the professional social media arena.

Here are a few tips and words of advise as to how you can increase the effectiveness of your LinkedIn profile:

Your LinkedIn profile photo – There is no need to hire an expensive photographer to take a photo of you, but you do need to have a photo. Take a pleasant head and shoulder photo to get people interested in reading the rest of your profile.

Your Headline – It could be said that the most important elements of your profile is a combination of your name, headline and photo. It it these three elements that will be visible when a person does a search of the LinkedIn database and views the results. Make your headline count explaining your function, industry, or currents goals, for example and make your headline stand out.

Your profile summary – The summary is a brief story about your career and space to tell the world what you want them know about you.

Your job descriptions – Your current and past jobs should be a story about your career path and should gain the interest of people reading your profile. You need to figure out your career path story or else it will just be a list of company names and job titles.

Recommendations – The most effective way to get recommendations from your connections is to take the time and leave recommendations of others. Remember only your first-degree connections can leave recommendations. When writing recommendations try to be specific with your words. Recommendations are one of the best functions of your LinkedIn profile because they are personal.

Your LinkedIn activity – Creating a profile, profile summary, and job descriptions is not enough. You need to be active on the LinkedIn network or else your account profile will just languish and make it clear to anyone who visits your profile page. You need to interact with others in order to cultivate and reinforce your network. To do this you could join a group and get involved in the conversations and leave comments on other user’s blog posts or even write and publish your articles.

Your network – Your network and connections plays a big part or your personal brand and persona. Some people create LinkedIn connections carefully, while others accept invitations from any stranger. Take the time and think about how you want to use your connections.

Your inbox – Your LinkedIn inbox is the ways other users can reach and connect with you directly. Always stay on top of inbox and you will see how your profile will succeed and provide gratification.

Your personal brand – Like it or not, every LinkedIn user has a personal brand. Your stories, career history, profile summary, videos, images, all provide a cohesive picture of who are for other readers to understand you better and your mission.

One of the most important things about social media is that there are no hard and fast rules. It is what you make of it and all about the effort and time you put in. LinkedIn provides a professional platform for you to connect, network and improve your career. It is a social media platform to provide a first impression so take the time and make your profile count.

What can you do if you hate your job

My Dream Job

Given the global slowdown and uncertainty over the past few years, many people have held onto their jobs even if they were miserable. There are signs that things are starting to improve, so for those of you who are not happy with your job, this is the time to start doing something about it.

Are you one of those people who hate Sunday evenings things about going to work the next day? When you are in the right job there is something to look forward to every day at work. Obviously, no job is perfect and there might be some irritations and snags, but overall you are satisfied and happy.

If you want to get out of the wrong job, here are few things you can start doing and prepare yourself for future market and economic upturns and opportunities:

Undertake a self-assessment – Be honest and ask yourself why you hate your current job. How long has you felt this way? Is it your current job role? Is it the corporate culture? Make a list of pros and cons and what you believe is your dream job.

Evaluate your career goals – Take the time to figure out what your career goals are and ask yourself where you would like to see yourself in 5 years. Will your current job be able to help you get to where you want to be? If not then what? If you know what you want, it makes it easier to put things into perspective.

Talk to your supervisor or boss – If you are unhappy with your current job role, working hours, compensation; it is a good idea to approach your supervisor, manager, or boss to discuss how you feel.

Change you job role without leaving – If you are happy with the company but not your current job role or supervisor, it might be a good idea to seek out a different position within the organization.

Seek out other opportunities at work – If there is an HR department, don’t be afraid to approach someone and ask about other opportunities within the organization. Offer to assist someone on a project to gain new skill and mentorship. Try make changes that will help boost your overall experience in the workplace.

Always maintain your professionalism – Even if you have reached a decision to quit, maintain your professionalism and work ethics and keep doing your job. Inform your superiors about your decisions and offer to help find a replacements. This will help with a recommendation letter and keep the door open if things don’t work out. Never burn bridges.

Do Not Quit – For those of you who have a job with a decent salary package and not totally unbearable, then just stay put. Change is always a difficult process and remember that quitting a finding a new job might not provide you with a better solution. Before you quit any job, change fields, or career path; make sure you are prepared, educated and qualified for the path you follow.

Check your attitude – Ask yourself what brought about this hatred for your job. Perhaps it was just one small experience when you were having a bad day that has left a bad taste in your mouth. Take a step back and let it go. Try keep a positive attitude and focus on the aspects of your job that you enjoy.

Leave you anger at home – Even if you are miserable at work and hate your job, you must not take this out on your clients or colleagues. Avoid all forms of gossip and complaining. Discuss your feelings with your co-workers but be careful

Are you working in a dead-end job?

Dead end job

Every job is different and not all offer the potential to grow, learn, make more money, or climb the corporate ladder. You career goals might be monetary based, skill based, or simply based on the enjoyment, but one common goal is to be able to progress over time in a job.

There is no perfect definition of a dead-end job. We all have different a perception of how to classify a dead-end job. Some might see a job without a chance of promotion, or lack of the chance to improve your skills as a dead-end job. A common theme of a dead-end job is that the job does not offer any chance to progress and achieve your career goals, dreams, or ambitions; now or in the future.

Here are few common signs and red flags that you are working in a dead-end job:

  • If you wake up every day and feel and say you hate your job.
  • Your, boss, manager, or supervisor have no idea about your career goals or interested in supporting your professional goals.
  • After a year or two, you are stuck in the same position without a promotion, increase in pay, or increased responsibility.
  • Promotion within your company are being filled by people from outside the company.
  • You job is affecting your health like weight loss, hair loss, exhaustion.
  • You no longer feel challenged by your tasks and projects you undertake.
  • The job offer no room to grow and the company cannot support your future career goals.
  • You colleagues are being offered opportunities while you are looked over.
  • You notice that your job can be done by a machine and it just a matter of time until you are replaced.
  • You no longer have time for yourself.
  • No matter what idea to bring to the table, they are always rejected by supervisors, bosses, and even your colleagues.
  • You no longer care about the way you look when going to work.
  • Your daily task become routine and mechanical.
  • You feel that you not being compensated fairly.
  • You values start differing from those of the company and no longer aligned.
  • Year after year, there are no changes and you do not expect any, for example a pay increase.
  • When you are spending more and more time daydreaming about other things that inspire you.
  • Even though you pour your heart into finding and solving problems, you boss or company don’t value your input and creativity.
  • You feel trapped and no longer able to grow and learn more skills.
  • You no longer get along with your boss and seeing them makes you feel anxious or depressed.
  • Company growth  is shrinking and over time weakening.
  • You are no longer motivated by your current job role.
  • Decision makers in the company re practicing favoritism and you need to be on their good side to get promoted.

In summary, if you able to face the facts and spot the telling signs that you are stuck in a dead-end job, you should immediately start looking for other options that will help grow professionally.

Common resume mistakes and blunders to avoid

Resume

Are you looking for job and sending out your resume but not getting any call backs for an interview. This could be due to your resume design and style. What is the perfect resume? It is difficult to create the perfect resume that stands out and over styling without going too far and making it to the point offing distracting.

A resume is a marketing document that showcases your skills and work accomplishments. However, for those people whose work is visual and better displayed in a portfolio, a resume can be difficult to create.

Writing the perfect resume is no easy feat. It is challenging to come up the correct balance in style, format, font and wording. When creating a resume, you want to try produce a document that will catch the recruiter’s eye and create interest, and persuade the recruiter to call you for a follow-up interview.

Here are a few tips and advise to creating the perfect resume:

Use a simple template – Generally, a recruiter will spend a few seconds looking at a resume. If your resume is too artsy or difficult to find the important information, it will probably land up in the trash.

Limit yourself to one page – Unless you are applying for an executive position, you should try to keep your resume to one page with a maximum of two. If you do have an extensive work history, then definitely include a summary highlights your expertise and skills.

Use the correct font and size – Make sure that your resume is easy on the eye and printed with the correct font size. If you need to squint your to read your resume, then it just land up in the trash. Never try to use a smaller font just to include more information.

Avoid using too much information – Highlight the most important points about your job description. use bullet points and short paragraphs to enhance readability.

Simple black and white – Use a simple font and never use colors. A good resume should be clear, legible and easy to read.

Run a spell check – A sure resume killer are misspelling and grammatical errors. Before sending out any resume, make sure to run a spell check and proofread it a few times. As a member of your family or a friend to read it.

Clear employment dates – When listing your employment history make sure that your employment dates are easy to identify. Don’t try camouflage or hide your employment history. Better to be honest on resume and get the call back.

No photo required – Remember you are applying for a job and not a beauty pageant. Recruiters are not looking to see what you look like. Rather they want to know more about experience and skills. Photos only cause distraction and according to statistics, the vast majority of resumes that include photos are passed over.

Avoid using too many bullet points – Don’t use more than 6 bullet points per job description. Its better to short, simple, clear and succinct job descriptions.

We all want our resume to stand out and the best resumes are those that are well written, clear and concise.

How continuing education can transform your career

Never stop learning

Many individuals looking for a job experience some barriers to employment during their careers. Even though these barriers make finding or even keeping a job more difficult, it is not impossible to make changes. One of the main barriers individuals face is the lack of eduction and required skills.

If you want to succeed in your career or in finding a job, you need to be an employee that employers are seeking and want to hire. In today’s tough economy and job climate, employers are seeking people with the right skills and personality that fit the company culture. If you are looking for a job or want to advance your career, you need to focus on your current skills.

Waking up to the reality that your lack of eduction and skills is holding you back in your job search or keeping you in an entry-level position, then it is time to take the step and then about continuing education.

Many people think about continuing with their education after high school or completing their first degree or diploma to help prepare them to enter the work force at a higher level. Furthering your education is a good idea for any and all individuals.

There are many benefits to continuing your education, including increasing your marketability and earning potential as well as creating new connections. Here are few things to consider and encourage you to go back to school despite the time, effort, financial burden.

Increase and enhance your marketable skills – Continuing education will give you the chance to advance or learn new skills and enable you to perform better in your current job or career. It will also open up new opportunities and make you a more competitive candidate when it comes to promotions.

Fulfill your personal career goals – Continuing with your education and attaining a new degree or diploma with provide you with a sense of accomplishment, personal fulfillment and boost your self-confidence.

Increasing your professional network – Probably one the best reasons to continue with your education is that you will be able to interact and meet new people and expand your professional network. This can also create new career connections.

Discover your dream career – Continuing your education will benefit you in many ways including exposing you to new fields of study. While studying you might come to the realization that your chosen field, while interesting for the time being, may not be your dream career.

Highlight your work ethic – Continuing your education will show employers the type of person you are and your character. It will show your independence and ambitions to learn new skills and continue to develop your skills and talents.

Become an expert in your field – Going back to school will provide you with the advanced knowledge and skills about your area of expertise and earn you a reputation as being an expert in your field.

Increase your salary and earning potential – It is a known fact that the more education you have behind you, whether it be a degree diploma or even a short course, will increase your earning potential.

Regardless of your age, financial position, family or time constraints; it never to late to go back to school and continue with your education. You can pursue with your education in the traditional campus life way or choose to study online. Do not hesitate and find a course today.