Blog

It’s a regular Friday afternoon and you can’t wait for the weekend. You and your colleague make small talk about weekend plans as you work, when your boss calls you to his office. You go in hoping he doesn’t take too much of your time, as you still need to finish a few tasks before you go home.


“We need to let you go…”


You don’t hear the rest of what he says. You’re too busy trying to hide the range of emotions roiling inside of you.


You are not alone.


Accept it


Different people react differently to the same situation. Maybe you are the “optimist” who would choose to think that this is the best thing to happen to you (Now you can go on that vacation…).


Maybe you’re the kind of person who would need to grieve under these circumstances. Maybe you’d fume in anger. Whichever kind of person you are and whatever reaction you may have, you must accept the situation and deal with it. There’s nothing to be gained by living in denial or blaming anybody, including yourself.


Take Charge


Sometimes terrible things happen for no obvious reason and you may not have control over them, but don’t let that make you forget that you are in charge of your life. Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise.


Join that yoga class you have never had the time for before but always wanted to try.  Learn a new skill to help you in your job search. Make use of this time to re-invent yourself. Trivial things like a new hairstyle can do wonders for your self-esteem.


Your Job is to find a job


The next thing to do is to set up a nice routine for yourself that involves exercise, eating healthy, socializing with your friends and family and prioritizing your job hunt. Most people seem to shy away from socializing when something like this happens, but the truth is your social network can help you bounce back quicker and give you much-needed moral support. Come up with a concrete action plan and a timetable so you remain focused on your job hunt, and treat your job search as your full-time job.


Network


Tap in to your existing professional network. Email your old colleagues and look up contacts on LinkedIn. See if you can leverage your connections to find an opportunity. You can also build your network by volunteering at organizations in your industry, which also makes for valid work experience.


Persevere


Despite doing all the above, you’ll still have the occasional bad day when everything seems hopeless. When you feel like the world is against you and “Why me?” won’t stop echoing in your head. What do you do then? Have a good cry if necessary, then think about what Frank Sinatra said: “The best revenge is massive success.”


Sleep on it. Then begin again.


Latha Ram | Contributing Writer

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Blog

Have you experienced job rejection at some point in your life?  If so, don’t be discouraged.  You’re not alone.  Almost all of us have gone through the process.  It is commonly encountered, yet it can be avoided.  Though causing much disappointment, the reasons behind job rejection are oftentimes beyond your control.  Among these could be: the cancellation of the advertised position due to recession or cost-cutting; the hiring of a more qualified person; or, the hiring of somebody based on “who-he-knows” contrary to the “what-he-knows” process.


On the flip-side, there are also many factors that are within your control.  Below are common ones to take note of, with corresponding tips on how to prevent rejection:


Resumes and Cover Letters


Lengthy, irrelevant resumes – Limit your resume to 2 pages as recruiters only spend 6 seconds when screening.  Ensure that it contains all the essential elements like the keywords indicated in the job posting plus any of your specific achievements that relate to the position being applied for.  It should be error-free, no discrepancies like employment gaps, and with simple but effective format.


Irrelevant cover letters – Customize the cover letter for every job position that you apply for.  Ensure to attach your resume when you send it via email.


Incomplete applications – Read the job ad properly and make sure that you comply with what the employer requires, i.e., video resumes, work samples.


Interviews


Being late – Always come early for an interview.  Arriving late will give the employer an impression of your carelessness and unreliability.  Inform the employer ahead if you cannot be punctual on the day of the interview.


Being unprepared – Conduct a research about the company and the position being applied for before the interview.  Nonetheless, do not forget to mention what you can bring to the table as the company wants to know how they will benefit from you.


Lack of technical knowledge or giving short and non-substantive answers – Respond in more detail to technical questions.  Showcase your core competencies by elaborating your answers.  Do it in a clear, concise, and engaging manner and give specific examples of competencies by using the STAR (Situation, Task, Action, and Result) technique.


Inability to relate – You should relate your skills to the position being interviewed for or in addressing the company needs.


Lack of enthusiasm – Be energetic; show your interest and excitement about the job and the company.


Asking the wrong questions – Never ask about vacation and other related questions as this will reflect what’s on your mind.


Dressing improperly – Dress professionally and neatly as this reflects the type of personality that you have.  Cover body prints or remove piercings, if any.


If you are not successful in securing a position, don’t despair.  Never make the mistake of perceiving rejection as a sign of failure; rather, view it as a test to your patience and resilience.  Rationalize it by thinking that the firm which rejected you is the wrong company and that you deserve a better one; yet, be cognizant of the stiff competition given the large population of job searchers composed of the unemployed like you, the yearly addition of fresh graduates, and those from recent company layoffs.


Make it a habit to analyze your job application process, what worked and what did not.  Learn from each experience.  Identify your mistakes, make improvements, and move on.  There are plenty of opportunities out there.  Widen your network.  Connect and make yourself visible.  Build your core strengths, be more competitive, focus on other opportunities, and continue to present yourself to the best you can.  Don’t give up!  Sooner than you expect, a better opportunity will come along.


M. L. Galvez-Ver | Contributing Writer

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Blog

If you ask someone in the workforce what job satisfaction means to them, you’ll often hear it defined by a variety of factors, including culture, pay, vacation time, and room for growth; in this instance, we will be focusing on the latter.  Nobody wants to feel like they aren’t able to move up in an organization.  It makes you feel unappreciated and can quickly result in you becoming disgruntled and disengaged.  What many don’t understand is that advancement has to do with a lot more than just being good at your job and that opportunities often exist but you have to proactively seek them out.  Today, we outline some of the best ways for you to seize the opportunities available in your company.


Define your own expertise


The type of work you take on, and the way in which you present yourself, will decide how others see you and your role.  Take some time to reflect on areas where you have the most passion/knowledge for and learn to see yourself as a professional with respect to that particular expertise.  If you grow to see yourself as a marketing expert, for example, and constantly describe yourself and take on work in that capacity, then others will grow to view you in that light as well.


Don’t allow yourself to flounder in a role where you are merely performing up to standard.  Find ways to acquire work or assignments that allow you to take full advantage of your greatest strengths and really allow you to showcase your unique value as an employee.


Seek high profile projects that allow management to notice your strengths


A good work ethic is a useful characteristic to have, but it won’t do much for your career if it isn’t directed towards something that the company is paying attention to.  Talk to management and co-workers about important projects coming up, and express your interest in contributing; however, to build the necessary trust between you and the company, you will first need to…


Study your workplace culture


Not all success can be attributed to the quality of your work or the depth of your expertise.  Sometimes, it’s simply a matter of whether people like working with you or not.  Keep an eye on common informal practices and expectations outside of your regular duties.


Network within the company


Very rarely do we accomplish anything completely on our own.  At some point, we all need someone to help open a door for us to walk through, and with that in mind, it is important to cultivate a list of allies at your workplace.  These are individuals who will go to bat for you when it counts and who will vouch for your ability to perform and support your desire to be given more important tasks.  They can also be people to whom you can express a desire to take on new roles.  Your allies will inevitably be a diverse set, running the gamut from co-workers to superiors.


Acquire additional training


Working on more important assignments may require you to learn new skills or expand your current knowledge set.  Take time to acquire new certifications that are relevant to your desired role and inquire about training programs offered by the company.


Landing your dream role or moving into a desirable management/executive position is all about being active.  Promotion tends not to happen if you wait around passively for someone to recognize your hard work.  By actively seeking out ways to make yourself visible to the higher-ups, you create opportunities for your career to keep growing and evolving.


Lance | Contributing Writer

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Blog, Human Resources
Finding the right employee can be difficult in even the best of circumstances. Poorly thought out search criteria can make the job that much harder by making it difficult to determine who the best available candidate is. Whenever you’re looking to fill a position, consider the following before you make a hiring decision.   Define Job Requirements or Qualifications   Be careful that your job requirements aren’t exclusionary or discriminatory towards other cultures or religions. For example, a rule that your employees must be clean-shaven. This would prevent you from hiring someone from the Sikh community even if you did not intend for it to do so.   To avoid issues with discrimination, be proactive about designing job requirements in such a way that only the absolute essentials are included: things that are required to do the job. This will ensure that your requirements fall under “bona fide” or government approved and will protect you from lawsuits and unflattering publicity.   Prepare a Detailed Job Description   A good job description will communicate the role’s responsibilities as clearly as possible to job seekers. It also allows them to get a better understanding of what their most important duties will be, and how they will be asked to prioritize. Ideally, the job description should also establish how the goals of the position contribute to the overall mission of the company.   A clear, detailed, well-written job description is not only useful for discouraging applications from less qualified applicants, but it can also help hiring managers better identify who has the most desirable characteristics for the job. For example, companies can learn more about where an employee might need more training by gauging their attributes against the job requirements.   Tailor Your Interview Questions   Avoid using the same tired old questions and instead draft specific questions based on the most important criteria outlined in your job description. You want to leave the interview with a good idea about how well the candidate will perform in the role and whether they will be a good cultural fit for your organization. You want to avoid using generic questions, so that they don’t just end up giving you the answers you want to hear.   Establish Employment Tests   Thorough background checks will protect you and your company from litigation over negligent hiring or a “failure to warn” if the employee ends up doing something violent or controversial. You have a duty of care to your employees, which means you can be held accountable if you hire someone who harms or threatens them. Aside from running the standard criminal background checks, it’s always a good idea to conduct a Google search for their LinkedIn, Facebook or Twitter accounts. By doing so, you may get some insight into what type of personality the candidates have and the kinds of associations they maintain. Some firms also utilize credit checks to better gauge how stable a person is in making important decisions.   Strong search criteria will allow you to quickly identify who has the most desirable traits by providing you with a system where the most important attributes are properly emphasized and the vetting process naturally requires the candidate to showcase the knowledge you need them to have. As your criteria becomes more and more well defined, the hiring process will become proportionately easier as well. Save yourself some work later by putting in the effort to develop the right criteria early.   Salman Allidina | Contributing Writer
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