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There are many benefits to working from home or working remotely. You can worry less about commuting, conveniently make time for personal obligations and work within your own comfort zone. But, when distracted by this ideal, we tend to become unproductive. Working at home or working remotely requires commitment. Here are some tips to help you:


Get Dressed

No one has ever been excited to commute to their office in the morning, thus it’s a great feeling to think you can get out of bed, stay in your pj’s and work! But, this will make you feel lazy! Getting dressed greatly influences your mood. You do not have to go out of your way and put on a suit or some heels, but stay casual. Dress like you are ready to get work done.


Tune out Distractions

Being able to have a movie on in the background, browse social media or online shop are all tempting distractions you may indulge in, but set this aside for a break. Whether you’re in the office or not, maintain your work habits just as if it were a normal work day. Work as if an employer or employee were watching you.


Schedule Your Day

Have an outline for everything you need to get done. This is a form of self-discipline. Not everyone is suitable for an at home work day or remote job because they are not capable of working independently, but use this as a chance to be your own boss. Nonetheless, do not lose valuable work time.


Stay Connected with Your Team

This isn’t your opportunity to avoid your boss, difficult coworkers or colleagues. Remember that having a job and maintaining your career is all about how well you are able to work with others. Take the initiative to remain easily accessible with those you work with. You also do not want to miss out on any important updates or events that may affect your work. Have your email open and phone ready to answer.


Maintain Consistent Office Hours

Be determined to work a set amount of hours for each particular day. This way, you do not find yourself working too much or working too little. For instance, you could maintain your usual 9-5 work hours to help you do so. Keeping family and colleagues/clients informed about your work hours is also a good strategy to keep your work life and personal life separate.


L. Shabudin | 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


Laid off when you least expected it? Passed over for that promotion you were counting on? Maybe your small business failed? In today’s climate, between an ongoing global pandemic and burgeoning social and political unrest, we must still remember that the only place we should keep moving is forward. It’s not the end of the world, and the most difficult times can be learning experiences.


Here’s how to pick yourself up when faced with career (and personal) adversity and look to the future with renewed enthusiasm and confidence.


Take a Moment


Take some time to acknowledge this major life change or disappointment. It can be quite a jolt to your routine when you don’t have to wake up in the morning to get dressed for work. Breathe and take it one day at a time – it’s perfectly fine to mourn the loss of a good thing, especially if you loved what you were doing. Activities like long walks, listening to music, and meditating in the morning to relax are great opportunities to take stock, and can help you reboot your system. It’s crucial to purge yourself of the negativity and despair that can come with being laid off before you start job hunting, for example. Wipe that slate clean!


Look at the Bright Side


Remember that it wasn’t all bad, even if you didn’t get that promotion. Make a note of some of the positive experiences at your past (or current) job, or lessons learned from a failed startup venture. How can you use that to your advantage moving forward? Perhaps your organizational skills were instrumental in the success of a project, or maybe there’s still a great idea in your failed business. “I’ve made billions of dollars of failures at Amazon.com,” Amazon founder Jeff Bezos told Business Insider. “Literally billions of dollars of failures. You might remember Pets.com or Kosmo.com. It was like getting a root canal with no anesthesia. None of those things are fun. But they also don’t matter.”


Spruce Up Your Skill-set


Treat as a learning opportunity and write out a list of things that you think you could have known or done better. This could include freshening up your social media skills or updating your knowledge of your industry’s best practices. You can go back to school for short-term courses, watch webinars in your area of expertise, start a blog, or do some volunteering (which looks great on your resume). The learning process never stops, and with the rapidly-changing job market, it will do you good to stay on top of the latest trends. You never know when your next opportunity – a new job, or another promotion – might come along. Be ready.


Move on Confidently


With your new knowledge and insight, it’s time for the hard work to begin. You’re wiser and more experienced, so position yourself in the professional world accordingly. Focus on your strengths. Remember to put things into perspective – layoffs aren’t personal, or you may get that promotion next time. Failure is the stepping stone to greatness, and things don’t always work out as planned. As Sir Winston Churchill famously said, “Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.”


Baisakhi Roy | 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

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 territory, 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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Blog

Known as an employee motivation strategy developed by psychologist Frederick Herzwig, job enrichment has been utilized by employers all over the world. It taps into people’s natural desire to succeed by helping them take advantage of their workflow. Its main focus is creating jobs with meaningful tasks, a range of diverse challenges and consistent feedback and communication between workers and supervisors. While it isn’t suitable for every businesses or every role, it can be a huge boon if used properly with the right people. Below, we outline some of the reasons why you might want to adopt a job enrichment process for your next role and why job enrichment matters.


Reduce boredom and increase engagement


Let’s face it, no matter how interesting it might be initially, performing the same duties day in and day out gets tiresome. Job enrichment allows a single role to take on extra dimensions and become less rote and mind numbing. Engaging work has a tendency to keep people interested, and a more focused workplace is always a plus.


Personal growth


Having a wider variety of responsibilities naturally requires the employee to expand their skill set. This is not only beneficial for the company, but for the individual as well, since it will give them real-world experience performing all sorts of tasks that they might not otherwise have been exposed to. These skills can be key to helping them advance their careers in the future. They will also feel more valued by a company that invests effort into developing in this way. This is especially true when they are offered constant feedback, so that they are constantly aware of what their strengths and weaknesses are. By allowing them to monitor their own progress, they will naturally take a greater interest in where their development is headed.


Increased autonomy


Micro management is bad for business, and job enrichment is a great way to allow workers to slowly develop their role into a more autonomous one. Employees function better when they’re given real responsibility and the freedom to overcome challenges in their own way. Likewise, companies can breathe easier knowing that their employees can handle multiple facets of the business without constant supervision. This enables them to focus their attention on the bigger picture rather than having to supervise every little action.


Be careful not to confuse job enrichment with increased workload. The idea is to attach more depth to a role by allowing the individual to develop on their own. That doesn’t necessarily mean just piling on extra things for someone to do. Also, keep in mind, there is no “one size fits all” with job enrichment. Some jobs and employees just aren’t built for it. There has to be a real desire to stretch the boundaries of a role on the part of both employer and employee for it work. It should never been forced on anyone – especially if the role is already particularly demanding. As long as you keep this in mind, job enrichment can do wonders for both the company and your next hire.


L. Wang | DBPC Blog

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Blog, Human Resources

The comparison between business and sports isn’t new – a company is like a team; the manager is like the coach. The employees, or players, have their own roles (positions) in the overall game plan. Every time you close a deal or make a sale, it’s like a victory. Haven’t had many victories recently? Need a stronger and more efficient squad? Want to win the championship of business?
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