Career Advice

4 ways to cope with job insecurity

Living with a lack of job security can be stressful, but did you know it’s also bad for your health? Job insecurity increases the odds of poor health by 50 percent, according to researchers from Harvard Business School and Stanford University.

This hits home for me. In my career, I’ve been an employee who’s worked for a company that frequently downsized, restructured and laid off employees. Working in that type of environment, I never knew if I was going to be the next one to lose my job. That stress was mentally and physically draining and caused me many headaches and sleeplessness nights.

And I’m not alone in this feeling. The majority of Americans are worried about paying for retirement, affording health care and losing their job, according to a new poll.

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Career Advice

What “A Walk in the Woods” taught me about setting goals

My sister and I recently went to see the comedy adventure A Walk in the Woods starring Robert Redford and Nick Nolte. It’s about two old friends, Bill (played by Redford) and Katz (played by Nolte) who reconnect and decide to hike the Appalachian trail despite the fact they are both in their 60s, haven’t spoken in decades and aren’t in the best physical shape.

Thanks to the many traveling mistakes made along the way by Bill and Katz, I left with a few new laugh lines and valuable goal setting reminders I can use in the workplace.

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Career Advice

3 manageable steps that help battle stress and avoid burnout

Last month was one of my most stressful months this year. Work was tense, my home life was chaotic, and my personal and professional calendar was jam-packed. Looking back on the month, I have to give myself some well-deserved kudos.

Although I was faced with a lot of challenges and commitments, I endured and did so gracefully. I never lost my cool, I never got run-down and I never missed a beat. If this had been five years ago, I would have been burnt out and sick in bed writing out sorry cards to all the people who had to deal with my frazzled, angry and impatient behavior. Okay, maybe I am exaggerating, but you get my point.

In the event you are ever faced with a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day, week, or month you may benefit from learning about some of the steps I took to get ready.

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Career Advice

Why being too confident is a bad thing—and how you can fix it

Recently, my son Aaron finally learned how to ride a bike on his own. He was so proud! Every time he made it down the street and back he became more confident—but unfortunately, that confidence quickly morphed into cockiness.

Not even an hour after he learned to ride a bike, he attempted to ride it one-handed all in an effort to show off in front of our neighbors. Needless to say, that didn’t work out, and within seconds of raising his hand he (and his bike) fell to the ground.

That day, my son not only learned how to ride his bike, but he also learned a valuable lesson—don’t be overconfident. Continue reading “Why being too confident is a bad thing—and how you can fix it”

Career Advice

3 awesome networking tips to help you reach your goals

Last week, I opened my tea bag and read the inspirational quote attached to it as I always do—only this time instead of feeling inspired, I felt aggravated. The quote read, “Don’t ask and everything will come.”

I felt, and still feel, this is lousy advice and cringe at the idea of people believing it. If you want to succeed, especially in the workplace, you have to advocate for yourself, get support from others and ask for help.

Rather than sitting around and waiting for things to happen (as my tea bag brilliantly suggests), these networking tips will actually help you make things happen. Continue reading “3 awesome networking tips to help you reach your goals”

Career Advice

Have a good boss? Don’t forget to recognize them in these 3 ways

Bad bosses are now an epidemic—and they’re sending employees running.

A Gallup study found 50 percent of employees surveyed left a job just to get away from their manager. These bad bosses aren’t defined by the things they do, but rather, by the critical things they don’t do.

That list includes failing to inspire, lacking a clear vision and direction, demonstrating an inability to lead change, and displaying bad judgment according to a study by the Harvard Business Review.

A good boss needs to be approachable, transparent, fair, passionate, and collaborative. In order to retain employees and keep them engaged, bosses need to openly communicate, effectively performance manage, and promote a strengths-based culture, reports Gallup.

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Career Advice

How to handle constructive criticism from your boss like a champ

Constructive criticism can be hard to hear—and even harder to react to the right way. In fact, 1 in 4 employees say they dread performance reviews more than anything else in their working lives, according to the Harvard Business Review.

As much as we’d like to think that we’d respond to negative feedback in a calm and productive manner, constructive criticism can often feel like a personal attack, ultimately clouding our judgment and eliciting a defensive response.

Douglas Stone, co-author of “Thanks for the Feedback,” told The Wall Street Journal that we react poorly to criticism—everything from crying to walking out—because of three reasons: Continue reading “How to handle constructive criticism from your boss like a champ”

Career Advice

3 ways to make yourself more memorable at work

I attribute a lot of my professional success to being memorable—and that comes with leaving people with a lasting impression. When you can become the topic of conversation because of your “memorability factor,” you’ll find yourself being introduced to a lot of new people and getting invited to a lot of new meetings, work projects and events.

My memorability factor has allowed me to grow, develop and network—helping me to become the supported and accomplished leader I am today.

You can achieve this too. Here’s how.

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Career Advice

3 work lessons I learned in my 20s that saved my career

I’m thankful for all of the great career lessons I learned in my 20s. Thanks to the poor decisions and mistakes I made (and yes, there were a lot of those) I started off my 30s feeling prepared to kick butt in the workplace. As I reflect back on what many people refer to as “their selfish years,” here are three of the most important lessons I learned.

You won’t make it if you fake it

In my early 20s, I was overly concerned with giving others the impression I was smart and knew it all. Even if I didn’t understand what someone was saying or asking I would nod my head and act as if I did.

This behavior backfired in a few ways—I’d leave meetings confused, disengaged and unprepared to work on my action items AND there were times I had to confess that I pretended to know something.

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Career Advice

4 tips on writing an impactful post-interview thank you note

Sending a thank you note or email after being interviewed is a must. If you don’t send one, you aren’t displaying common courtesy and may give the impression you don’t value the interviewer’s time, the job opportunity or your reputation.

This, of course, could directly (and negatively) impact the hiring decision. I know many managers who have not hired someone based on not receiving a thank you note, and as a fellow hiring manager, I have followed the same rule of thumb. In and of itself, sending a thank you note isn’t good enough.

If your follow-up note or email doesn’t generate excitement and keep you at the forefront of the hiring manager’s mind, all it does is help ensure you aren’t guilty of an interview etiquette blunder.

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