Friday, July 22, 2011

Is Your Career Stagnant?

I see clients every day who profess a real need to change careers. They are convinced that their present situation is so unpalpable that a 180 degree change is necessary. One question that I ask right up front is whether or not the present career can be "sculpted" to make it less stagnant and more rewarding. Many say no.....but frequently, most begin to consider it, based on the current uncertainly of today's economy. What do you do when you think your current career is stagnant?
First, realize the importance of your mind set. Look at what you enjoy in your present career. Look at what is working and how you can get rid of, or at least lessen, what is not. Be more positive and more flexible.
Second, self-consider. Consider what your ideal work world would look like and then think about how to get there.
Third, how are your skills? Are there job tasks that you do now that you need to do better? Be open to further training and education and take advantage of any offered. If it is not offered, go get it yourself.
Fourth, do something. Action can mean progress. Talk to a career coach, to your boss, to anyone who might help you. You will be glad that you did.

Friday, July 15, 2011

The Start Up of You

Thomas Friedman, the author, recently posted a blog on this topic in the New York Times. He commented on his vision of the hiring future in this country and it will truly be survival of the fittest. Employees of the future, according to him will have to "turn on a dime"; in other words constantly stay current, constantly add value, constantly reinvent. Entirely new mind sets and skills sets will be necessary, including getting rid of the "grand plan". Perpetual career planning will be the key; keeping on top of what industries are working and growing will be necessary, and being able to "role with the punches" will be paramount.
How will our schools adapt, especially the schools of higher education? Who will be responsible for training these future employees, especially in encouraging entrepreneurial vision? I think that the responsibility for training the future US workforce will lay squarely on each individual in it. As I mentioned above, survival of the fittest will be the name of the game. Think about it.

Friday, July 8, 2011

Background Checks, Anyone?

As I coach and consult with clients, when we discuss job search techniques, I emphasize the importance of being careful with one's online presence. Not only do potential employers google the applicants to gain information, but now also scour the web, social networking sites in particular looking for digital dirt, and using this as a basis to say "no thanks" to an applicant. In fact, the Federal Trace Commission has authorized Social Intelligence Corp of Santa Barbara, CA to sell reports on checked applicants to employers and those files can last for seven years.
Be also aware that you might be very careful, but your Facebook "friends" might not be so. You could indeed be linked to someone nefarious and be cast aside due to guilt by association. Remember, this is legal; right now this company uses human analysis; however, before too long, this too may be "outsourced" to more and more hi tech software.
What can you do as a jobseeker to "remedy" this? Right now, not much. Your best bet is to clean up digitally as much as you can, and then blog, write articles etc. Establish yourself as an expert in your field, a "go to" person who writes authoritatively and well. At least as you add positive items to your web presence, you can push down any others that can potentially hurt.