Monday, August 27, 2018

How to Initiate A Career Change

According to an article posted by Inc., only 14% of workers think they have the "perfect job". If you find yourself in the 86% who is unsatisfied with your career, it might be time for a change. Follow the below steps to start your transition into an employment opportunity that will finally allow you to enjoy going to work.

1. Assess your funds.

If you don't know what career lane you are moving to next, do know that the journey to figuring this out will take some time. Consider what your finances will look like if you ever find yourself with unstable employment options. Some experts say that you should have at least six months' salary socked away for a rainy day.

2. Get back into learning.
Maybe your current position doesn't challenge you. If this is true, it has probably been some time since the last time you learned new things and expanded your skill set. Practice learning again by taking a class or getting started on a new hobby. Your new career will likely require that you learn a lot on the job.

3. Do your research.

Study up on the positions that look attractive to you, don't just daydream about them. Figure out what you want and what you don't want. The more information you can acquire, the better decisions you can make about where you want to go professionally.

4. Don't stop networking.

Make new connections in different industries, join professional organizations, and realize that even a simple coffee meeting can bring you more than just insight into someone else's professional life -- it could even bring you a job.

5. Open your mind.

Seek out new experiences, spend time with different types of people, and consider new resources, like hiring a life coach. You want forward movement, not inertia, and new people and experiences will get you to where you need to be.

6. Look for "better."

Finding the "perfect" job after switching out of an old one will be near impossible. In fact, eliminate the idea of perfection completely -- it will be more productive to simply identify what characteristics of a new job will be better than what you do currently.

7. Have the right mindset.

Although your current position may need a change, don't let past negative experiences affect how you approach future opportunities.

8. Remember to take your time.

Don't rush into the first position you find. After all, you wouldn't want to fall into another job that you really don't like. And remember: rejection, although demoralizing, is just part of your journey. Enjoy the ride to your new career.

Monday, August 13, 2018

An Expert's Guide to Interview Questions

One of the most stressful parts of an interview can be the question segment. No, not when your potential employer is grilling you on your past, but when you must ask the questions. One bad question can ruin an otherwise perfect interview, while asking the right questions can help you stand out long after the interview ends. Here’s a list from Business Insider of the best and worst questions to ask during an interview:

·        “How would you describe the company’s culture?”
·        “Who do you consider your major competitors? How are your better?”
·         “Can you tell me what steps need to be completed before your company can generate an offer?”
·        “How would you describe the company’s values around work-life balance?”
·        “If you were to hire me, what might I expect in a typical day?”
·        “How has this position evolved?”
·        “Do you have any hesitations about my qualifications?”
·        “If hired, what are the three most important things you’d like me to accomplish in the first six to twelve months at the company?”
·        “What type of employee tends to succeed here? What qualities are the most important for doing well and advancing at the firm?”
·        “How do you evaluate success here?”
·        “What have past employees done to succeed in this position?”
·        “Who would I be reporting to?”
·        “Can you give me an example of how I would collaborate with my manager?”
·        “When your staff comes to you with conflicts, how do you respond?”
·        “What was your career plan before you got into this role, and how has that changed since you’ve been here?”
·        “Where do you see yourself in five years?”
·        “What’s one of the most interesting projects or opportunities that you’ve worked on?”
·        “Is there anything else I can provide to help you make your decision?”
·        “Beyond the hard skills required to successfully perform this job, what soft skills would serve the company and position best?”
·        “How would you score the company on living up to its core values? What’s the one thing you’re working to improve on?”
·        “I read this story about your company. Can you tell me more about this?”
·        “What is your staff turnover rate and what are you doing to reduce it?”
·        “Can you tell me where the company is going?”
·        “What makes people stay at this company?”
·        “Is there anyone else you would like me to meet with?”
·        “Will I have an opportunity to meet those who would be part of my staff/ my manager during the interview process?”
·        “Have I answered all your questions?”
·        “What’s your timeline for making a decision, and when can I expect to hear back from you?”

·        “What does your company do?”
·        “What will me salary be?”
·        “What are the hours?” or “Will I have to work long hours?”
·        “Will I have my own office?”
·        “Can I make personal calls during the day?”
·        “Do you monitor emails or internet usage?”
·        “How soon can I take a vacation?”
·        “Will I have an expense account?”
·        “When will I be eligible for a raise?”
·        “Can I arrive early or leave late as long as I get my work done?”
·        “What are grounds for termination?”
·        “How quickly could I be considered for a promotion?”
·        “Who should I avoid in the office?”
·        “What happens if I don’t get along with my boss or coworkers?”
·        “Are you married?” or “Do you have kids?”
·        “Do you check social media accounts?” or “Do you do background checks?”
·        “I heard this wild rumor about the CEO. Is it true?”
·        “How did I do?” or “Did I get the job?”
·        “How long are you going to take to get back to me?”

Monday, August 6, 2018

How To Recover From Interview Mistakes

                Unfortunately, interview mistakes are bound to happen to anyone. All the preparation and confidence in the world cannot protect you from an occasional blunder. Recovering from these mistakes is what will set you apart from other candidates and ultimately help get you your dream job.

Mistake #1: Missing the phone screening or interview
“A huge pain point for recruiters is putting all this work into finding a stellar candidate and scheduling a phone screening to feel them out for the role, only for the candidate to miss it,” says Shukran. “Missing the phone screen and not following up to reschedule shows a lack of professionalism, time management, and follow up, and these are key skills a recruiter looks for when assessing someone for any role.”

How to recover:
If you’ve already made this mistake, it’s not a complete loss: follow up with your contact as quickly as possible, take full responsibility for the slip, and explain the mitigating circumstances. Anything less – like dismissing it as no big deal or assuming they’ll reschedule quickly – won’t win you any favors (or second chances).

Mistake #2: Sending a generic follow-up or not following up enough
Shukran notes that another common interview mistake is sending a bland follow-up note or not following up at all. This causes you to miss out on an enormous opportunity to stand out among other prospective hires and – more importantly – to continue the conversation and build a relationship with your interviewer.

How to recover:
If you made this common interview mistake and haven’t followed up to an interview yet, do so! Just make sure it’s unique to the person with whom you interviewed and shows you’re paying attention to the conversation: “Whenever possible, think back to something an interviewer said about the company and comment on it, or follow up for more information or to share an interesting article tied to the role. A follow-up that showcases whether or not you’re a fit shows more interest post-interview than a generic one,” remarks Shukran.
I know of a candidate that was interviewing with a company, and while they were waiting in the wings to hear back from the recruiter, the company received some good reviews in the press,” remarks Shukran. “The next morning, the candidate reached out just to say congratulations on the big win. That thoughtful gesture showcased that person’s passion for the company and helped that candidate stay top of mind.”

Mistake #3: Following up too much
“When a candidate follows up too frequently, I start to wonder about what’s going on,” says Shukran. “Did they get turned down by another company, so they’re latching onto this job? Did they not hear when we said we’re going through first round of interviews and will get back to them next week? Either they’re not listening or they’re too aggressive, and either way that’s a turnoff.”  

How to recover:
Aside from chilling out and stepping back, you can’t recover from too much follow up. Your best bet is to learn your lesson and apply a more moderate approach to following your next interview (or better yet, ask your interviewer what the follow-up schedule looks like and act accordingly).  
If you think that’s harsh, consider this: interviewers know that how you follow up to interview is how you’ll follow up with customers and co-workers on the job: “An aggressive level of follow up concerns me because it’s a preview of what that person will be like as part of a team,” explains Shukran. “I’m thinking, ‘If this person is working with another stakeholder on a project or deadline, they might not be cognizant or respectful of what the other person’s time line is.’”  

Mistake #4: Not asking any questions
If it seems like asking questions at the end of an interview is optional, Shukran wants to be clear that it’s not: “An interview is more of a conversation than anything else,” she says. “When you’re really listening in an interview and having an insightful conversation, you have an opportunity to dig deeper. If you’re not asking questions, it shows a lack of interest and passion.”

How to recover:
If you find yourself in the middle of an interview and you really can’t think of any questions, it’s OK to ask to circle back with questions later.
“Not everyone can think on their feet,” Shukran says. “When you’re still in the moment and you can’t think of any questions, it’s OK to say, ‘This is a lot of info to digest, I’d like to think through the questions and follow up by email.’ That would show me a strong sense of self-awareness that you know you’re not the person to think on your feet but you know what you need to do to get the job done.”
If you didn’t ask questions in the interview, all is not lost. The next time you’re in touch with your interviewer – whether that’s a scheduled follow-up call or a check-in a week or two after your interview – ask if it’s possible to take them up on their offer to ask questions and include a few thoughtful ones in your email.

Mistake #5: Not showing industry know-how
The best way to impress a recruiter or hiring manager is to do your research in advance of the interview – that means doing your due diligence and reading the company’s website, performing a web search for articles mentioning the company or recent press releases, and reviewing all interview-related email correspondence.
“I work in ad tech, so what’s always very impressive to me is when candidates come in from outside our industry with a strong understanding of the business,” says Shukran. “There may be gaps or mistakes in how they’re addressing what we do, but whether they have the details right or not, it shows me that they have a strong passion for the potential opportunity and a strategic, business-oriented way of thinking.”

How to recover:
This is yet another common interview mistake where the best approach is a preventative one. Research the company and the position as thoroughly as possible in advance of your interview so you’re prepared to have an intelligent discussion about the position and the role it plays in the company’s big picture.
If you made the mistake of taking the interview cold, make sure you show that you’ve done your research when you follow up. Mention a recent press release or acquisition, or ask a question that shows that you’ve put some thought into how the position will play into the company’s long-term goals. As Shukran explains, “When you can connect your day to day to the bigger picture on an ongoing basis, it’s much more valuable compared to someone who is focused on the tasks associated with the job.”