The Desk

March 9, 2016

Taking Charge

One thing that can lead to marginalization is turning the human into a non-thinking, uncreative entity (as compared with a sentient being who is capable of making meaningful contributions). There is very little to nothing that’s rewarding and motivating about existing in PVS (persistent vegetative state), except perhaps the appreciation that the speed at which activities are successfully executed is at a stellar rate that can be matched by few, if any.

Some grow weary of the monotony. They see the value is automation and encourage use of robotics so that the opportunity to challenge their minds is more available. Even those with the most minimal level of intelligence delight is being able to conquer a new task. Having that reasonable task put before them is exciting.

There are some people who have been conditioned to believe they will be punished for attempting to stretch their role in an organization beyond being PVS. They fear the unknown realm of persecution and retribution for daring to do more than the repetitious. They have experimented with new endeavors and found success nearly every time they’ve done so. Having been exposed to the sweet taste of adventure and new challenges, they want to emerge into the areas where their friends and colleagues are similarly nudged into more involvement – and recognition.

Use Your Skills

Use Your Skills

That fear of retribution is the inhibiting factor. It needs to be overcome. The only way to do that is to take charge of the situation. If the path of asking permission to be included in the next endeavor doesn’t work out, there are other ways to get from Point A to Point B. Some of them take a little (and some a lot) more effort.

The supervisor or manager seems to have favorites for the project. Sometimes it’s because the manager has been watching the progress of their workers and knows what to expect. They know the quality of the work that will be produced, the amount of attention to detail, the speed at which the work will be done, how well the worker interacts with others, how smoothly things blend. Sounds like networking to me.

How much of a challenge is that task compared to today’s mashed potatoes same as? If it’s the equivalent of going from boiling an egg to preparing a nine-course meal overnight, this may not be the time to experiment. If this is merely turning a boiled egg into an Easter egg (or a deviled egg), this may be an opportunity waiting to happen. How to broach that stupid roadblock of being allowed to get involved is the issue.

Perhaps a facsimile is the answer. “Hey, Boss. I’ve been watching the others working on the [deviled egg] and I’ve been experimenting with making them on my own time. Here’s a sample of what I did on my own. I’d like to do it with the others so I can be involved in doing it in the company style.” Mind you, this is the prime sample that’s being put forth. The BETA version is just not the version that should be used as an example of what’s your best.

Was it accepted? Great! It wasn’t? Get permission to work with the others to learn their technique. Better yet, sidle up to one of those who’s a “friend” and ask them to show you how to make yours better. Sidle up to another chum so that they’ll ask to have you included in their group for the next batch of [deviled eggs]. Or just go to an outside group and make some [deviled eggs] they way they do so that you have practice doing it and an audience that benefits from the fact that you were involved in making [deviled eggs]. No matter which way you go – direct or indirect – you have at least one new skill to append to your resume accomplishments.

It’s one thing to aimlessly drift from one boring and uninspiring situation to the next while waiting (and that’s the critical concept here – waiting) for something better to come along and take you with it. Having a mentor who can push you forward at Opportunity’s knock is great. But sometimes it’s necessary to take charge of your situation and do something to spur your opportunities to open to you.

There will be times when taking charge means quietly looking elsewhere for what’s going to be better in terms of many things you desire and have long-term positive payoffs. There will also be times when taking charge simply means becoming more assertive. Mind you, I said “assertive,” not “aggressive,” that is, demanding what you want instead of stating your case about why you are a great option.

Wait! What was that I heard? Was it Opportunity knocking at your door?

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October 9, 2015

Not the Right Time

Filed under: Hiring,Job Search,Networking — Yvonne LaRose @ 3:21 PM
Tags: , , , , ,

The email header read, “The State of Screening.” It’s an article about screening applicants with a criminal background. But just looking at the words of the header brings to mind the many different types of screening situations that arise in the employment as well as social fields – situations that have nothing to do with a criminal background. And the words also bring to mind the various attempts to be included in something. In the past, having a criminal background meant not getting hired; it meant learning how to deal with rejection and how to overcome it.

Excluded from access, but why?

Excluded from access, but why?

The New Millennial form of rejection and saying “no” has taken a new form. It’s also a new bend in the exclusion (even discrimination) formula on how to do it without it seeming to be so.

Tell the one seeking admission to the venue, or opportunity, that it’s reached the maximum number of participants (no quota was ever stated) and the next time the opportunity will be available again will be in 9-12 months. That’s a good way to make them go away and keep quiet. In fact, with that much of a window to the next admission phase, the person will no doubt have forgotten about the opportunity or will have found a better substitute. Some are diligent and will show up for the next opportunity. There’s a remedy for that similar to the old fashioned way of handling the rejection.

A variation on this form of exclusion is to tell the aspirant that the opportunity was just concluded. Again, the next opportunity to become part of the situation will be in 6-12 months.

The pattern used to be prerequisites that needed to be satisfied before admission was granted. The prerequisites can be a great as performing some task or as minor as paying an admission fee that is slightly outside of the expected capabilities of the one seeking admission. Or there are materials that are required before there can be inclusion. Do we know the purpose and use of the materials? Ask about those things. Typically, there will be no response – just dead silence. The underlying message is, “We don’t want you. The requirements are merely shams in order to exclude you. We thought you understood that we don’t want you among us. Your being dense only proves that you don’t belong.”

Some of the old pattern still survives. If the aspirant wants to climb in the environment (and has somehow managed to get in) and has produced useful content that demonstrates their value and insightfulness, simply store it in a remote location where few, if any, are likely to find it. In the alternative, simply delete it on the basis that there have been changes and it no longer has congruence with the rest of the venue.

All of these are also part and parcel of the unanswered phone message or email; the lack of response to the application; the MIA acknowledgement of a submission.

And, of course, when the new window opens (6 to 12 months later), there’s no notice of the event. Meanwhile, many others who also had an interest seem to have been able to enter the venue much sooner (within one month or less) than the protracted waiting period for the excluded one.

Access is also used as a means of exclusion. Those who are confined to wheelchairs and cannot enter a building via stairs are also subtly removed from the pool of participants. The situation is aggravated by virtue of the fact that there is no elevator nor incline. Yes, there are other forms of apparatus that can substitute for the elevator and incline. Crutches or a walking cane are just two alternatives. But why create the barriers to something that’s supposed to be open to all who want to be members of the venue? It sends a message, not a very favorable one, that the person is unqualified or incompetent in some way and therefore does not deserve to be included.

There are other examples of exclusion. An example is when things that are suggested as desirable for a special event or consideration. Content is submitted but there are some faults that result in it not being used; maybe next time. But the rejection becomes chronic. It isn’t isolated to the first, single rejection but becomes the constant for anything and everything proffered. It’s enough to be a discouragement to the faint of heart. They will become disappointed, even dejected, and eventually will go away.  Those who are naive to the dynamic will conclude that they are inferior in every way and opt for either sublimated existence through drugs or alternative lifestyle or escape the discomfort through suicide.

One positive from this exercise in futility is that each rejection can result in fine tuning the content, whether personal or physical. That results in practice that leads to perfection and could mean that it will be accepted in a better place that will display the content to the advantage of the piece and its creator.

Will the one who originally rejected the content be displeased? No. They won’t even pay attention. Meanwhile, the one who was rejected has come to the conclusion that they are not the one who is unqualified – it’s the venue that has the problem and it isn’t a healthy place.

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November 2, 2014

Do the Research

Entrances is a 360 networking forum on LinkedIn. It’s for an exchange of information and for networking with others in order to develop new connections and awareness of new opportunities. The purpose is to gain better insights about another part of the employment sector other than your own space so that better choices are made based in feedback from the other players. One goal is developing relationships that can lead to referrals.

Entrances-Faces of the workplace

Entrances – Making sound choices based on informed networking

While it isn’t a forum for political speech, there are a series of videos running that are produced by ColorofChange.org based on their #IfTheySpeakForMe theme . They show by various examples of what ensues if others make choices for you because you didn’t do your research; instead, you were passive and took whatever you got. In this weekend before midterm elections, the videos emphasize the importance of doing good research before embarking on an endeavor or entering into relationships.

With those compelling ColorofChange messages are scenarios of hair care dictated by a stranger and being hijacked in a taxi. Those are similar to taking on employment with a client or employer you haven’t researched.

I encourage you to do the research this weekend that will help you make the right choice for you in the voting booth. Remember to vote. Exercise your rights.

Who Is This

That being said, remember to do some research, ask meaningful questions, about where your livelihood is or will be. Find out who the potential employer is. Determine whether the recruiter is the right one for you. What does the recruiter want in terms of a “qualified candidate” and how can the resume writer or the career coach help you them reach your goals. Maybe they simply are not the right fit. Maybe their philosophies are (and never will be) in consonance with your own ethics or beliefs in good practices. Consider the video wherein the hairstyle of several women is determined by a total stranger who contravenes the women’s wishes and relationship with their hairdresser.

We’ve talked about hair in Entrances from the perspective of what is accepted by the other side of the employment desk. It was intended to look at the various styles, colors, whether it constituted good grooming, and whether hairstyle is a valid hiring criteria. A few interesting views were expressed.

Making Impressions

Has someone impressed you with their words? What did they do to make that impression? How reliable are they? Would you be willing to refer them to something that may be a good match for what they have to offer?

Bottom Line

Which is the more important emphasis? Know who the employer is. Know their product or service before going on the interview or taking them on as a client. Recruiters are held liable for the misdeeds of their clients. It is a recruiter’s duty to guide a client along the more ethical path if they are erring in their decisions or execution of their business practices. But it’s imperative to know all of these things before getting involved or else having a delicate but compelling reason for taking a different, better path to open the right door and make better entrances.

May 18, 2014

Career Tip: Overcoming Recent Knowledge Objections

For whatever reason, you’ve been out of the formal employment situation for quite a while. You’ve also been out of school for more than two or three years. (Try approaching a decade or so.) All of those stellar accomplishments that happened while you were in the work world are becoming stale. One recruiter was tactless enough to tell you your skills aren’t sufficiently up to date to qualify for a temp assignment.

Have you been sitting in a dark room and doing absolutely nothing all this time or have you been active in all manner of activities that are being dismissed, even taken for granted? The only reason I would accept that excuse is if you were in a coma and on life support for an extended period of time. And even if that were true, your doctor probably prescribed occupational rehabilitative support so that you can get back into current practices. So you weren’t in a coma but maybe you were undergoing some type of traumatic illness that took you out of mainstream Life for a while. Start your own retraining regimen. (Maybe you already have but weren’t aware.)

It’s important to read everyday. Even the simple postings on social media are forcing you to read content, analyze it, and draw conclusions. Make certain real news is included in your diet of reading. Make certain you’re reading includes recreational content. Make certain your reading includes industry news that helps you recognize names of individuals as well as know which company merged with another – and which moved out of the state. Read.

Okay, so you haven’t been in school for a while. That doesn’t necessarily mean you need to bury yourself in academic halls for another four to six years. There are continuing education classes offered that rely on not only being in a physical class room. There are online classes that can help you refresh your knowledge, remind you of techniques and tactics, and make you aware of innovations since you earned your degree. Maybe an online class or continuing education class of one hour in duration is the answer.

While we’re talking about school, there are some online universities that would like to add people who can teach a class. Investigate what their criteria for a course is. Since you have some time on your hands, you have time to research and outline your own course and present it – after you’ve done research on which universities are accepting new classes and what their terms are.

You’re blogging about your boring life and the travails of not finding things that are a match for what you have to offer. You’re taking your blogging skills for granted. Which platforms are you using? There are companies that need people who are skilled at using certain types of blogging platforms.

Then there’s technology. In addition to blogging, you may be capable of using software and applications with great ease. Maybe you’re even developing your own apps. Your cell phone is either an I-Phone or an Android, both of which use the tap and swipe methodology. You’ve probably ditched your stand alone and are now using a laptop. In fact, you’ve probably ditched your laptop and are now using a tablet (with wi-fi and double-sided camera). Are you getting some ideas yet about things you’ve been overlooking?

But we’re talking about actualizing new technology. We haven’t been talking about reinforcing existing knowledge. That’s fine. While you were “laid up”, situations arose wherein you could get involved in volunteer projects. Sure, they didn’t pay you dollars and cents for seeing your duties through to completion. But you were in charge of some aspect of the project or put your energies into fulfilling your duties. Volunteer projects can count toward maintaining skills and work experience.

In fact, that reminds me of a blog post that my colleague, Steve Levy, wrote about his being hospitalized. It was a time when hospitals didn’t allow patients to have access to the Internet. So Steve charmed one person after another and networked until he got permission to talk with the IT Department. They allowed him to have access to the Internet. His recruiting endeavors continued after a one day lapse. He gained new contacts at every rung of the hierarchy. I think he even picked up some candidates for some of his unfilled job orders. That post resonated with me in many ways.

There are many examples of unofficial things that are done that could be counted as applicable experience without straining to legitimize it. Too often we take situations for granted and miss the fact that they could be considered work experience. Too often we forget that what was done could have been a form of consulting. Just make certain you verify that interpretation before putting it forth without substantiation.

As for those continuing education classes, get your certificate that verifies your attendance and that you earned your credits. Then do some things in order to apply that refreshed, renewed knowledge. And then get out there and start networking so you can effectively market yourself.

Sponsored links:

 

March 11, 2013

Career Tip: Moving on Gracefully

So this is how a CEO looks, right?

Andrew Mason, former CEO of Groupon

Andrew Mason, former CEO of Groupon

This is a male version of a CEO and he’s doing what you’d expect of a 21st Century CEO. Definitely. You notice the crisp t-shirt, the roughly tossled hair, the hands in both jeans pockets that creates body language screaming with confidence, the wistful look and eyes looking at something aside as though focusing on a distraction rather than the line that leads to a purposeful destination.

Actually, the image is of former (as of February 28, 2013) Groupon CEO Andrew Mason. He served at the helm for 4.5 years. Things for Groupon went as poorly as they did for Facebook and its IPO. Changes needed to be made – drastic changes. Andrew admitted his leadership was flawed. Not many people will make that type of admission, even to their own self. Some will thrash about and make excuses about the dumb others who were at fault. Because the sting is still fresh and is affecting many parts of one’s persona, a lot of people resort to thrashing and bashing those other people.

A lot of people deal with terminations (getting fired) in different ways. After exploding people in your mind as though you’re playing a video game, there’s the next step – developing and executing a plan of recovery. As you do so, your self esteem seems to pull itself back into your body. You feel as though there’s purposefulness in you and your life. You start wondering why you didn’t allow yourself some of the indulgences you’re finding and actualized them long ago. No matter.

The next step is getting to that frame of mind that Andrew reached. It allowed him to write that public proclamation of having been fired. It afforded him the time to take a stroll down the avenue rather than a cab across town. It allowed him to wear his t-shirt and jeans instead of going through all the ramifications of making certain to keep the business suit dry cleaning costs in check. He put things into perspective and prioritized what’s really important.

That proclamation helped him be proactive and positive. It gave him the opportunity to face the world on his own terms and to open his networks so that they start working for him. Just by publishing that brief memo, Andrew started searching for his next position and his hat is not in his hands.

Resources:

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February 27, 2013

What Does This Mean in Law?

We talked about legal job search tips that deserve to be preserved. Here are some additional points that are important to interviewing, job search, and strategies for the sake of understanding the terminology and concepts that are being discussed and for the sake of just getting ahead of the game.

So you’re just starting out and trying to figure out what needs to be done to stand out when your classmates are more stellar than you. FindLaw’s Hot Job Talk talks about the various aspects of getting started. One of the difficult areas is should you pursue a position in a firm when your GPA and class standing isn’t as stellar as that of your classmates.

HOW TO LAND A LEGAL JOB WHEN YOU’RE AT THE BOTTOM OF YOUR CLASS
(FindLaw’s Greedy Associates) – In this sluggish economy, it can be hard to land a job, even if you graduate in the top 10 percent of your class. So what legal job-search tips can possibly help someone who’s ranked at or near the bottom?

So let’s say you opt for contract work or a less than stellar first year position and they tell you your first project is “document review”. That’s a loaded term. It could mean one thing in litigation and have a completely different context when it comes to transactional law. And then there are other areas of law such as environmental advocacy. Maybe you should be asking more questions in the moment that those terms arise.

JUST WHAT IS DOCUMENT REVIEW?
(FindLaw’s Greedy Associates) – If you ask 10 different attorneys what document review is, you’ll probably get 10 different answers.

One solution to this ticklish situation is to have a trusted senior in your corner and explaining things to you as you go. Make certain you respect their position. Don’t start thinking you know more than the “teacher.” And take to heart these tips on how to find a mentor.

NEW LAWYERS NEED MENTORS: 3 WAYS TO FIND ONE
(FindLaw’s Strategist) – If you’re starting your own law practice, one of the most common pieces of advice you’ll receive is to get a mentor.

So let’s say you decide to strike out on your own. You may think you can just go and hang your shingle and life will be good; clients will flock to your office; you’ll have to beat them back with a 2×4 as you bill $500 per hour for your time. Really? You need to plan your business just as carefully as you did your education. Here are some things that need to be taken into consideration by a solo practitioner. Just remember that the advice morphs when it comes to practicing with others in some type of collaborative.

WHAT INCORPORATION STRUCTURE IS BEST FOR A SOLO PRACTICE?
(FindLaw’s Strategist)- Not all solo firms advise clients about how to incorporate, but all solo attorneys have to figure out what kind of business entity is best for them.

And now that you’ve set up shop, you need to start networking in order to gain potential business and clients. Since we just had the Winter holidays, you may have been frequenting some of the holiday parties. Since we’re in the midst of the Awards and athletics playoffs seasons, some of those celebrations may call you into those venues to rub elbows and hobnob. Now you’re starting to ask yourself the next pivotal question about building business relationships and client base.

HOW TO GET NEW CLIENTS AT A HOLIDAY PARTY WITHOUT REALLY TRYING
(FindLaw’s Greedy Associates)- So you’ve been invited to the big holiday party. Congratulations. All the bigwigs will be there. Now you just got to close the deal. But how do you go about picking up clients at the holiday party?

Sponsored Links:

December 8, 2012

4 Ways to Build Your Tribe

Filed under: Networking — Yvonne LaRose @ 2:50 PM

4 Ways to Build Your Tribe.

Right up there with a Forbes article about community building. Great ideas; strong rationales about taking certain steps. Really well written. I recommend you subscribe to this blog so you can be on tap for the other advice he shares with us.

December 7, 2012

Diversity Sites for the Picking

Filed under: Job Search,Networking,Recruiting — Yvonne LaRose @ 8:06 PM
Tags: , , , ,

Well, the other day the site had an accident. I caused it. There was a tweak this and a tweak that and a position this to a better place and a “how do I fix that” moment. Four hours into this project, something looked like it was precisely the answer to getting things fixed. I opened the menu, selected what should be eliminated, and then clicked “Delete.” All of the Community and Blogroll links disappeared. Oops.

Fortunately, they’re still on the backend of the site. But that does you readers little to no use. [Donchajestluvit when you make more work for yourself when your goal was to get things more organized, streamlined, and easier to manage?]

Today, I’m sharing with you the Career Opportunity links that used to be in the side bar. The great thing about the Opportunity links that were in this category is that they all relate to diversity in some way. Given that state of affairs (as well as the timing), a few additional sites are included in this summary. There’s no easy way to organize these. The list was alphabetical without regard to genre; so that order is maintained now.

  • Career Opportunities is the folder located at Entrances Bulletins. New opportunities from various sites are added there, sometimes on a daily basis. In fact, you can register to be a Basic/Free member and then post any opportunities you know of in that folder. Just make certain what you post isn’t some type of MLM or pyramid situation. You’ll notice that anything that’s been posted by the owner of the site has an AddThis button so that the post can be shared with a large number of other sites, including Twitter, LinkedIn, and FaceBook (to name a few). That button can be used liberally. In fact, you can contact the owner of the site and request the script so that the button can be added to your own signature.
  • ComputerJobs.com isn’t a diversity site but it definitely is one you should know about. It offers situations that span the needs of the computer industry. The last time I checked, it was thriving. It offers all types of jobs that are either full time or contract and related to computers.
  • Disaboom Jobs features jobs specifically amenable to people with some type of impairment. It’s vision friendly by virtue of the fact that it has larger type. The newly posted jobs and the featured jobs show the job title as well as the city and state. They also display when the job was posted with the site. (You have an idea of how much of a chance you stand in regard to timeliness of your applying for the situation.) It’s user friendly and easy to navigate. Employers as well as job searchers will find the tabs helpful.
  • Diversitree.com Jobs holds a wealth of jobs for a wealth of diversity areas. According to owner Patricia, “We recruit for all types of diversity; as it is defined differently for every person, based on experience,” and she enumerates gender, age, military service, ethnicity, differently-abled, multilingualism, religion, personal orientation, and many more.” It’s simple and straightforward in its presentation which makes it extremely easy to navigate. Those of you involved in recruiting, hiring, and onboarding, you’ll be especially attracted to the fact that guest bloggers are invited. You job seekers will appreciate the tools for researching companies.
  • Find Law Career Center is really difficult to find even with the correct URL. Once you’re in there, you’ll find an enormous amount of resources for both job seekers and recruiters. You looking for some special information? Here are some of the categories: Employer Information that includes Salary Charts (FindLaw Exclusive), Employer Directory, Recruiter Information, and the Legal Recruiter Directory, Legal Recruiter Jobs. You can also manage your career with these tools: Law Career Articles, Diversity Center, and the Cool Jobs Newsletter. You want more? Okay. How about Professional Development Center, Outplacement Center, and AttorneyJobs.com. It’s worth a visit for lawyers, paralegals, librarians, and recruiters. The trick is actually getting into the center.
  • Hirediversity has tons of tools for recruiting and job search. There’s obviously going to be a search tool. There are search articles to help with making the effort less a matter of hit or miss. I like the fact that they have a Diversity Events page that will help you to be at the right place at the right time to rub elbows, shake hands, and talk to the right people for better connections and referrals.
  • VetJobs sports a lot of features one wouldn’t expect from a typical job site. For example, there’s a section for spouses. Although labeled Alliances, this section provides descriptions and links to other job search sites for a great cast of ones career net.

Okay, now they’re restored – here. Visit the page frequently to find out more. Leave comments about your experiences with these sites and your recommendations. Also leave comments to recommend other diversity sites not included in this post. Please give the name of the site, its URL, and a brief description of it so that others can make use of it. (The next time there’s an update about job boards and sites, your recommendation will be included.) They’ll make it even more useful and it will become a vibrant resource instead of yet another list of websites.

Sponsored links:

Knock ’em Dead 2013: The Ultimate Job Search Guide

110 Best Job Search Sites on the Internet

February 11, 2011

Career Tip: In the Positive Mode

Going through a job search while unemployed has its pitfalls. If we’re not careful, they can easily consume us. One of the things that feeds them is becoming discouraged and then allowing bad habits to invade our routine. Avoid them as much as possible.

It’s extremely important to stick to the formalities of the brick and mortar workplace in attitude, dress, and speech. Otherwise, we lapse into complacency and a too-relaxed attitude about ourselves and our work. We lose credibility and create mountains to climb, instead of small hills, to our summit of success. Staying ready to go and ready to present the professional side of yourself is critical.

Keep yourself to a schedule. This includes maintaining records, developing materials unique to your endeavors, as well as housekeeping. Make certain that you stick to the regimen of rising at the same time as you would to go to work. Put shower and dress in the same time frame as brush your teeth (and hair). Grooming is important. A little make-up, well-trimmed hair (facial and head) do wonders for attracting people to you. Be certain you get enough rest at night. A well-managed look accompanied by a well-managed schedule makes a powerful statement about the positive you.

Make a budget for yourself and stay within it. Be certain to include a small amount for some type of entertainment – even if it’s a small as a latte, a bouquet of flowers, a new CD/DVD, or a bottle of fragrance. It’s encouraging to know you really do have some financial margin available that’s devoted to a little bit of enjoyment.

Make a point of attending at least one morning business meeting per month and dress appropriately. “Go out” doesn’t need to be all day; an hour or so is sufficient to create a break in being a household hermit but also keep you circulating in the public. It lets you see what the trends are in your real world so you’re in gear for immediately starting things.

Make certain you dress in business casual attire and go out at least three times per week. Wearing business casual doesn’t mean you have to break the bank. Two tops and two bottoms can be interchanged so that you always have a different look. Wash and wear is more sensible than dry clean only (which should be used sparingly).

Keep up your reading about current affairs (newspaper), literature (international or national magazine), and industry chatter (industry journal or newspaper). It’s good grist for conversations as well as keeping you well informed. It’s also useful to keep up your recreational reading in whatever areas interest you. The more well rounded your reading, the more informed and interesting you are.

When we keep ourselves well groomed, we feel better physically and psychologically and therefore do a better job. It attracts people to us because we make them feel better about themselves, their environment, and the choices they make for themselves. Speaking of physical, it’s good to make time for exercise (at least walking) 10 to 20 minutes each day. It keeps the body well tuned, under control, and also promoting a positive attitude.

The interesting part of all these recommendations is the vast number of ways that they can be accomplished. What are you already doing to stay in the positive mode. Given what was discussed here, what types of things can you think of doing to make it happen for you?

January 5, 2011

Using Your Skills and Networks

Job search can be a real challenge. Sometimes it’s handled well and people seem to bounce back from a short-term setback with zeal in what appears to be no time. Others have a long detour and a lot of learned lessons that leave the apprentice not too well for the wear.

There’s talk that jobs in the Midwest are short on availability. Even though rents are much lower there than New York or Los Angeles, affordable housing is simply a pipe dream if you’re homeless or living on the streets.

Yet, today we have a story about a man who’s in the Midwest and homeless. It seems he’s in the right place at precisely the right time with just the right skills and definitely more than the required motivation. This man with the golden voice just got Opportunity buried into his lap thanks to his using his voice, the training he got in refining that skill, and the community on Reddit to advance his opportunities for housing and a career in the industry that he loves.

It was interesting that about the time that the golden-voiced Ted Williams story was going viral on YouTube late yesterday afternoon I was talking with a cab driver about those who are down on their luck but cheat or use shortcuts to pull themselves out of trouble. I observed that in those cases, the person will take on the traditional opportunity. Unfortunately, they scam the system by injuring their own self in order to gain short-term, not very profitable tools to gain income and relief. The self injury provides a stream for the short term (maybe three to six months), creates a Worker’s Comp record for them, and decreases their credibility. Ultimately, they keep finding themselves back in the same circumstances or maybe even worse. Meanwhile, their alternative paths to empowerment make those who are willing to provide a hand up or an open door become jaundiced and leery, thereby making them unwilling to repeat the generosity lest they be exploited again. Those who have genuine desires and goals, not to mention talent, are left to struggle against the stigma and prejudice.

Not so in the case of Williams. He’s using his intelligence to help him leverage himself and his talents to beat down the prejudices and stigma toward a person in his temporary circumstances and start his journey down the road to his personal success as he defines it. He’s availing himself of the assistance provided by his virtual network on Reddit to gain the reach he needs to market himself.

His story is so refreshing that it makes me wonder how many other real and virtual communities are actualizing these and other types of connections with referral opportunities for their members of whatever age or background.

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