Tag Archive | staff

Holiday Tips for Job Seekers

I just read an article on job hunting in December.  The article said how December is a great time to look for a new job.  I was surprised by this information; as I always thought the end of the year was a bad time to look for a new job.  Here is what I gleaned from the article.

  1. Many companies are finalizing their budgets for the upcoming year, and will be adding staff. Now is a good time to get your resume in front of a hiring manager for the New Year.  Most companies work on a calendar year basis, as opposed to a fiscal year.
  2. Get out and socialize. Parties, industry events and gatherings provide a great opportunity to mix and mingle with potential employers.
  3. Your completion level drops off in December. Most job seekers don’t want to bother with their job search during the holidays.  You will more likely get noticed when the competition thins out.
  4. Reconnect with old contacts. I have a list of recruiters who I have dealt with in the past.  I have shared this list with many others, and suggest they reconnect with them now.  In my opinion, during a job search you can never have too many recruiters working for you.  You have to take the initiative, and call them regularly.  New opportunities come in all the time, and now is a great time to let them know you are in the market for a new job.

Here are several of my own suggestions for a successful job search.

Reach out to former employers.  I recently read that nearly 50% of jobs are found through networking.  Be actively engaged on LinkedIn.  If you are interested in working for a particular company, sign up on their website for job opening notifications.

In mid-2013, I found out my position was being eliminated.  I was bummed out because this was my dream job.  The employer asked me to stay on for two months to help out with the transition.  I was happy to oblige.  During those two months I sent out LinkedIn invitations to every one of my co-workers who were on LinkedIn.  I also asked if any of my current co-workers knew of any employers looking for people.  I got very positive feedback, and doubled the amount of my LinkedIn connections.  I also asked people to endorse my skills.  Some of these wonderful folks wrote nice recommendations for me.   We live in a digital age, and having a good LinkedIn profile is crucial.

If you are currently unemployed, do volunteer work.  Having large gaps on your resume will hurt you.  You will be helping others in your community, and this may lead to potential jobs.  I work full time and volunteer with two local organizations.  I visit with an elderly gentleman every week, and teach financial literacy to high school students.   Being unemployed can be depressing, helping others makes you feel good.

Last but not least, try and help others who are looking for work if you can.  If you see that one of your LinkedIn connections knows a person at a company you are interested in, ask for an introduction.

Sitting on the couch eating Christmas cookies and drinking eggnog is great during the holidays, but don’t let that be the only thing you do.

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How not to be a rotten boss-by a former boss

Every October I get a statement from the Social Security administration.  It shows me how long I’ve been working, and what my wages have been.  I’ve been working steadily for the past 42 years.  I’m so tired of working; I’m especially tired of working for rotten bosses.  I’m looking at the last stretch before retirement.  Don’t get me wrong, as I have had some great bosses over the years.  I’ve even managed others for 15 years of my career.  I’m a college educated professional who is tired of being treated like a pimply faced teenager at McDonalds.

The first time I managed others, I decided that I would never treat my direct reports how I have been treated in the past.  I still talk to many people I have managed over the years.  Some tell me I’m the best boss they ever had. Aww, that’s always nice to hear. Plus the best part of keeping in contact with old co-workers is being able to hear when the rotten boss you worked for finally gets fired.

I so often wonder how people get management positions that are not even qualified to manage a midnight trip to the bathroom.  I got out of management because, well middle management sucks, and I’m too pro employee.  I think everyone in the work place should be treated with respect.  I don’t want my employees to kiss my butt just so that won’t lose their job.  I’ve seen so many abuses of power in my work life it’s disgusting.  Talking to human resources was always pointless.  They don’t care about the employees, it’s whatever management wants.

So here are some of my suggestions for being a good boss.

  1. Respect your staff. Your subordinates will be much more productive, and make you look better if they are treated well.
  2. Don’t expect your employees to work a crazy amount of hours just because you do. They have lives outside of work. Plus they usually make considerably less money than you do.
  3. Be flexible. We all have kids, aging parents, you name it.  As long as the job gets done, don’t be a troll.
  4. Listen to your staff’s suggestions. I’ve been working for many years, but I’m all about working smarter, not harder.  We all have a common goal at work.
  5. Never comment negatively on your staff’s performance in front of others. Nothing makes me less productive than being humiliated in front of my co-workers.  This is probably the worst, especially if the boss has a twelfth grade education, and you have a Bachelor’s degree.
  6. Show concern for your employee’s wellbeing. We all have different things we are dealing with.
  7. Set a good example. Not the do as I say, not as I do.
  8. Go to bat for your employees. I’ve done this time and again for my staff, and it’s always greatly appreciated.
  9. Be honest. If you can’t give your employee a raise right now, try to give them more paid time off.  Flexible hours, etc.
  10. Go the extra mile for your staff. I always gave gifts to my staff at Christmas, and their birthdays.  I also bought my staff gifts whenever I traveled. A lunch out on the boss is a nice gesture.

Believe me when I say a happy staff is a more productive staff. Not a staff that could care less if you got hit by a bus.