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CAREER Magazine | 4 | January /February 2010
IN THIS ISSUE...
13 SPOLIGHT ON SUCCESS Meet Cheryl Pullins Publisher of live magazine 14 HR NEWS Understanding Unemployement By Carol Haynes 17 ASK THE EXPERT / Q&A How do I explain employment gaps? 18 COVER STORY MILLENNIAL MADNESS With Generation Y Expert Lisa Orrell By Stephanie C. Harper
4 EDITORIAL PAGE Meet CAREER Magazine
24 CAREERS AND CHRIST A Situation for Revelation By Stephanie C. Harper
6 PUBLISHER'S PERSPECTIVE You Are Cordially Invited to Win in 2010! By Stephanie C. Harper 7 PUBLISHER'S PAGE Congratulations are in order! 8 YOUR VOICE IN PRINT Reflections and Reactions 10 BLACK AND WHITE TERMS Human Resources Terminology
26 INSPIRED PERSPECTIVES Millennials, Let's Talk! By Drenna Armstrong 27 CAREER TIPS Trick Questions in the Interview Process By Stephanie C. Harper 28 INNER RESOURCES The Secrets to Reclaiming Your Lost Motivation By Linda Pucci, PhD
11 BUSINESS OWNER BOOT CAMP Please put it in writing! 29 HR PERSPECTIVE By Stephanie C. Harper Education vs. Experience? Employers Sound Off 12 UNIQUE IMAGES Fashion: Evolution and Recreation 30 EMPLOYEE PERSPECTIVE By Courtney A. Hammonds Money vs. Perks? Employees Sound Off
31 OFFICE TIPS Tips for Encouraging Proper Office Behavior By Traci N. Morgan 32 SPOTLIGHT ON SUCCESS Meet Todd Rhoad Managing Director, BT Consulting 33 I LIVE ONLINE Why Some Recruiters Never Call By Jim Stroud 35 LIVE AFTER LAYOFF What's Your Contingency Plan? By Otis Collier 36 COMPENSATION CORNER Employers: Is your payroll department keeping you safe? By Niakesha Woodley 37 BUSINESS AS USUAL Are you the new kid on your block? By Pamela Burks CAREER Magazine (a StephanieHarper.com Publication) is a green publication written by career industry professionals for job seekers (employees, employers and entrepreneurs. Published bi-monthly, no part of CAREER Magazine may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means without the written permission of the Publisher. All letters sent to CAREER Magazine will be treated as unconditionally assisgned for the publicaton and are subject to CAREER Magazine's unrestricted right to edit and comment. The opinions expressed by our contributors are not necessarily those of the Publisher. All articles are intellectual property of CAREER Magazine and/or its contributors. All rights reserved. Copyright 2008-2010.
CAREER Magazine | 5 | January /February 2010
Cordially Invited To Win In 2010! Welcome to a New You! In 1965, the late James Brown released a song entitled "I Got You" more commonly known as "I Feel Good". To date, it is one of Brown's signature songs and is arguably his most widely-known recording. The words of the song (sing with me), “I feel good and I knew that I would!” I've sang that song since I was a little girl and every time it plays my mood instantly changes for the better. On July 11, 2009, I felt that “good” feeling when I united in Holy Matrimony with my husband LeVon. I felt that “good” feeling as we crossed over into a new decade, and you better believe I have that “good” feeling as I write to you! I’m so very excited about 2010 and all that is available to us. Many are fighting the recession with boxing gloves, yet others are using this time to reflect, re-define and become independent. Why? They have simply decided that no matter what, they will win! Winning means more than beating the competitor. It also means to make one’s way or to attain a point or goal. As I’ve said for many years, “Success is personal and you are the only one who can define it!” This year, you decide what success looks and feels like to you. Speaking of success, CAREER Magazine wants to recognize, honor and celebrate men and women who work in the career industry in the 2010 Issue of “Who’s Who in the Career Industry”, be sure you stop by the CM website (www.thecareermag.com) to nominate yourself or others who have made their mark in the career field. Thank for your continued support of CAREER Magazine and stay tuned for CAREER Magazine TV... coming to inform, inspire and ignite your passion. Cordially Inviting You to Win,
Stephanie C. Harper-Haynes, PHR, CCP, CHRM Author, Career Expert, Speaker, Radio Host Publisher, CAREER Magazine CAREER Magazine | 6 | January /February 2010
Congratulations TO CAREER MAGAZINE'S PUBLISHER 07.11.09
LeVon & Stephanie CAREER Magazine | 7 | January /February 2010
Your Voice In Print
Mr. Obama is a great person and I wish him much success. Thanks to CAEREER Magazine for highlighting the first family. It is amazing that the media chooses to focus on the shorts Michelle Obama wears on a family vacation, but refuses to tell the world how powerful she is. I had no idea she was so accomplished. They have always said "behind every good man is a great woman!". Keep educating us and giving us iformation we can all use.
Thank you for sharing the black facts. Very imformative! I thought your Love Speaks article was fantasic. I have implemented some of the those love languages in my house any my marriage is much better. It's true, being happy and inlove is a choice. Thank you again!
D. Mitchell, Tacoma, WA
EXCELLENCE I certianly enjoyed your issue featuring Mr. President Barack Obama. The profile on his career was phenominally wrtten. I personally wish he had the opportunity to see such a well written piece about his life/career. I have shared this issue with several people who all share the same sentiments. Please keep up the great work, CAREER Magazine is a publication of excellence! D. Hamley, Pheonix, AZ
EDUCATION AT ITS BEST Wow! Thank you for sharing the 101 Black Facts. This was a peice of history that everyone no matter the race, color or creed could learn from. This is really a good read. G. Campton, Vancouver, Canada
V. Blackshire, Hampton, VA
LOVE SPOKE Thank for the article on love. Loving who you are makes a huge difference in how you view what you do. Wow! Great piece on the President. Love your publication.
G. Nealy, Washington, DC. Born and raised in California, I have began to understand my roots and where I truly come from as an adult GREAT VISION (28). I think this was one of the best CAREER Mag is definately in a class all Profiles that I have seen on the by itself. Great vision. Keep it going! President. Never in my lifetime, did I A. Armstong, Springfield, MI think I would see a person who looks like me hold the highest office in the United States. Mr. President's journey has truly inspired me to be a better man, a better friend, and a YES, WE WANT TO better person. I am convinced now that I can do and become anything I HEAR FROM YOU! choose. Thanks, CAREER Magazine for giving us a unique look at careers, Due to the overwhelming amount of this is good stuff! emails that we receive, we are B. White, Sacramento, CA
unable to respond to email
CAREER Magazine is one of the most personally, but will do our best to imformative publications I have seen include your comments. If you have on career development. Please keep a comment, questions or an up the great work! S. Smith, Detroit, MI observation, please emails us email@example.com
CAREER Magazine | 8 | January /February 2010
CAREER Magazine | 9 | January /February 2010
In Black and White Terms
HUMAN RESOURCES TERMINOLOGY Source: Wikipedia
Roles Attendance Schedules Wages Benefits Health & safety
Casual/Contingent " Full-time " Part-time " Self-employed/Independent contractor " Temporary " Wage labour Employment counsellor " Application " Background Check " Cover letter " Drug testing " Contract " Interview " Job hunting " Job fraud " Probation " Referral " Recruiter (Employment agency " Executive search) " Résumé/Curriculum Vitæ (CV) " Work-athome scheme " Selection criteria Internship " Job " Numerary " Permanent " Permatemp " Supernumerary " Supervisor " Volunteer Break " Career break " Furlough " Gap year " Leave of absence " Long service leave " No call, no show " Sabbatical " Sick leave 35-hour workweek " Eight-hour day " Flextime plan " Four-day week " Overtime " Retroactive overtime " Shift work " Telecommuting " Workweek " Working time Living wage " Maximum wage " Minimum wage " Overtime rate " Paid time off " Performance-related pay " Salary " Salary cap " Working poor Annual leave " Sick leave " Parental leave " Health insurance " Life insurance " Disability insurance " Take-home vehicle Ergonomics " Industrial injury " Occupational disease " Occupational health psychology " Sick building syndrome " Work accident (Occupational fatality) " Workplace noise " Workplace stress " Workplace wellness " Work-life balance " Workers' compensation
Affirmative action " Equal pay for women Employee handbook " Evaluation " Sexual harassment " Sleeping while on duty " Infractions Workplace bullying " Workplace surveillance Anti-work " Job satisfaction " Refusal of work " Workaholic " Work aversion disorder " Willingness Work ethic " Wage slavery At-will employment " Constructive dismissal " Firing " Layoff " Letter of resignation " Termination Resignation " Retirement " Severance package " Types of unemployment " Unemployment " Unemployment benefits " Wrongful dismissal Dead end job " Overqualification " Recession-proof job " Underemployment " Miscellaneous Unemployment rates Equality
CAREER Magazine | 10 | January /February 2010
Business Owner Bootcamp
PLEASE PUT THAT IN WRITING!
By Stephanie C. Harper
Regardless to the size of your organization, there are three things that should always be in writing.
EMPLOYEE MANUAL An employee handbook ( or manual) details guidelines, expectations and procedures of a business or company to its employees. Employee handbooks should be given to employees on one of the first days of his/her job, in order to acquaint them with their new company and its policies. Sound employment policies provide the framework within which an organization governs its employee relations. A policies and procedures manual guides both managers and employees as to what is expected and can prevent misunderstandings about employer policy. In addition, carefully written policies can be used to illustrate your commitment to a positive work environment and to nondiscriminatory employment practices.
JOB DESCRIPTIONS Written job descriptions are an essential part of the hiring process. As a general rule, it sets clear expectations for both the employer and the employees and outlines the scope of responsibility. Written job descriptions also help employers classify employees properly under the Fair Labor and Standards Act. Written job descriptions can also assist employers with compliance obligations under the Americans with Disabilities Act and the Family Medical Leave Act. Lastly, written job descriptions help with performance reviews and justification of increases in pay by serving as a guide to determine how well and employee has fulfilled their working requirements. A job description should have at least six items: (1) the job title; (2) the job classification; (3) supervisory or reporting structure; (4) essential duties or responsibilities; (5) non-essential duties; and (6) terms and conditions of employment.
RATE AND SCHEDULE OF PAY Pay practices are regulated extensively at both the federal and state level. All employers should inform employees when and how wage and salary payments will be made. Employers should always clearly state mandatory deductions and elective deductions. Many employers prefer direct deposit options because of the savings to employers on printing and distributing checks, however many states prohibit this as a mandatory option for employment. The Business Owner HR Bootcamp is designed to help business owners with day-to-day HR Decision Making Processes CAREER Magazine | 11 | January /February 2010
FASHION: Evolution and Recreation
By Courtney A. Hammonds We are fortunate to live in a time when we are at the peak of fashion but we are also at the liberty to bring designs from our forefathers and incorporate them into the designs of the 21st Century. Not to mention the art of revamping the old, merging it with the new to create brand new. Let's think of it as "recycling the looks of time". One should never be entrapped in the notion that fashion is only what you wear. Actually, it should be viewed on a much broader scale. One should be able to rock a T-shirt and jeans with the same confidence and grace as you would when you are glamourous and chic for a black tie affair. It is all about wearing the look and not allowing the look to wear you.
In the workplace, fashion also has its place. The workplace is open to your freedom of expression, as long as it fits into the culture of the company. Yes, every company has a culture and it's your responsibilty to represent the company (at least during your work hours). If you are unsure whether or not your style "fits in". Here are a few things to ask yourself: WHAT ARE YOU WEARING? (Does it fit into the company culture?) WHO IS YOUR AUDIENCE? (who are the clients of your company?) HOW ARE YOU WEARING IT? (do you have to pull it down, or adjust it constantly?) WHEN ARE YOU WEARING IT? (Is this Monday morning while you have meetings, or casual Friday's) WHY ARE YOU WEARING IT? (Are you making a statement or is this just what you like?) Remember your success in the company can be heavily influenced by how others view you. If your company offers a business-casual environment, be careful of being too casual. Remember the word BUSINESS comes before casual.
CAREER Magazine | 12 | January /February 2010
A transformational and life changing speaker, Cheryl Pullins provides a dynamic range of practical principles to empower her audiences to live their best life. Cheryl’s mission is to inspire you to define your purpose and maximize your full potential for purposeful living. Cheryl’s engaging interactive style and her ability to be transparent with her audiences, by sharing real life experiences, serves as a motivation to move you from mediocre to living your best life. Cheryl has over 20 years of human resources experience. In addition to her corporate experience, she has just as many years experience working with Senior Pastors and their ministries in the areas of administration and training. She specializes in seminars and workshops that are practical, interactive and impactful. Cheryl’s presentations are principle based and purpose driven with a thought provoking approach. Cheryl is the Executive Editor of live magazine, Managing Partner of Suber Pullins Publishing, Executive Director of Victorious Living for Women, Member of the Maryland Healthcare Human Resources Association, Member of National Association of Female Executives and Member of the 2009-2010 Christian Authors on Tour.
www.CherylPullins.com CAREER Magazine | 13 | January /February 2010
Unemployment compensation is money received by an unemployed worker from the United States or a state. In the United States, this compensation is classified as a type of social welfare benefit. According to the Internal Revenue Code, these types of benefits are to be included in a taxpayerâ€™s gross income.
Federal-State joint programs Wisconsin originated the idea of unemployment insurance (UI) in the U.S. in 1932. In the United States, there are 50 state unemployment insurance programs plus one each in the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico. Through the Social Security Act of 1935, the Federal Government of the United States effectively coerced the individual states into adopting unemployment insurance plans. Unemployment insurance is a federal-state program jointly financed through federal and state employer payroll taxes (federal and state UI taxes). Generally, employers must pay both state and federal unemployment taxes if:
For the US Federal tax year of 2009, as a result of the signing of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, signed by President Barack Obama on February 17, 2009 the first $2,400 worth of unemployment income received during the 'tax year' of 2009 will be exempted from being considered as taxable income on the Federal level, when American taxpayers file their 2009 IRS tax return paperwork in early 2010.
(1) they pay wages to employees totaling $1500 or more in any quarter of a calendar year; or, (2) they had at least one employee during any day of a week during 20 weeks in a calendar year, regardless of whether the weeks were consecutive. However, some state laws differ from the federal law. To facilitate this program, the U.S. Congress passed the Federal Unemployment Tax Act (FUTA), which authorizes the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) to collect an annual federal employer tax used to fund state workforce agencies. FUTA covers the costs of administering the Unemployment Insurance and Job Service programs in all states. In addition, FUTA pays one-half of the cost of extended unemployment benefits (during periods of high unemployment) and provides for a fund from which states may borrow, if necessary, to pay benefits. As originally established, the states paid the federal government.
CAREER Magazine | 14 | January /February 2010
Understanding Unemployment Cont....
The FUTA tax rate was originally three percent of taxable wages collected from employers who employed at least four employees, and employers could deduct up to 90 percent of the amount due if they paid taxes to a state to support a system of unemployment insurance which met Federal standards, but the rules have changed as follows. The FUTA tax rate is now 6.2 percent of taxable wages of employees who meet both the above and following criteria, and the taxable wage base is the first $7,000 paid in wages to each employee during a calendar year. Employers who pay the state unemployment tax on a timely basis receive an offset credit of up to 5.4 percent regardless of the rate of tax they pay their state. Therefore, the net FUTA tax rate is generally 0.8 percent (6.2 percent - 5.4 percent), for a maximum FUTA tax of $56.00 per employee, per year (.008 X $7,000 = $56.00). State law determines individual state unemployment insurance tax rates. In the United States, unemployment insurance tax rates use experience rating. Within the above constraints, the individual states and territories raise their own contributions and run their own programs. The federal government sets broad guidelines for coverage and eligibility, but states vary in how they determine benefits and eligibility. Federal rules are drawn by the United States Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration. For most states, the maximum period for receiving benefits is 26 weeks. There is an extended benefit program (authorized through the Social Security Acts) that may be triggered by state economic conditions. Congress has often passed temporary programs to extend benefits during economic recessions. Most recently, this was through the Temporary Extended Unemployment Compensation (TEUC) program, which has since expired. The federal government lends money to the states for unemployment insurance when the states run short of funds. In general, this can happen when the unemployment rate is high. The need for loans can be exacerbated when a state cuts taxes and increases benefits. All loans must be repaid with interest. Congressional actions to massively increase penalties for states incurring large debts for unemployment benefits led to state fiscal crises in the 1980s. Because it is a joint federal/state program run by the states, taxing business for the benefit of labor, the politics of unemployment insurance are very complex.
Economic functioning The Unemployment Insurance (UI) program helps counter economic fluctuations. When the economy grows, UI program revenue rises through increased tax revenues while UI program spending falls as fewer workers are unemployed. The effect of collecting more taxes than are spent dampens demand in the economy. This also creates a surplus of funds or a "cushion" of available funds for the UI program to draw upon during a recession. In a recession, UI tax revenue falls and UI program spending rises as more workers lose their jobs and receive UC benefits. The increased amount of UI payments to unemployed workers puts additional funds into the economy and dampens the effect of earnings losses.
Things to Remember The majority of American workers do not qualify for unemployment insurance. This includes part-time, temporary, and self-employed workers. Generally, the worker must be unemployed through no fault of his/her own (generally through lay-offs). Unemployment benefits are based on reported covered quarterly earnings. The amount of earnings and the number of quarters worked are used to determine the length and value of the unemployment benefit. Each Thursday, the Department of Labor issues the Unemployment Insurance Weekly Claims Report. Its headline number is the seasonally adjusted estimate for the initial claims for unemployment for the previous week in the United States. This statistic, because of its timeliness, is an important indicator of the health of the labor market, and more broadly, the vigor of the overall economy. Numbers below 300,000 tend to indicate a tightening labor market whereas numbers above 400,000 are associated with increasing unemployment. Source: Wikipedia CAREER Magazine | 15 | January /February 2010
CAREER Magazine | 16 | January /February 2010
Ask the Expert
with Stephanie C. Harper, PHR, CCP, CHRM
Dear Ms. Harper, Due to the economy, I have had to switch jobs several times in the past two years. Prior to being laid off, I worked for the same employer for eight (8) years. How do I explain these employment gaps BEFORE the face to face interview so that employers don't think I can't keep a job? ~Sheila, Fairfax, VA Dear Sheila, Your "problem" is not a problem at all. You have a simple fix of explaining your employment history by utlizing a cover letter. Because these job losses were no fault of your own, you have nothing to worry about when it comes to explaning your work history. Infact, you may want to use the situation to your advantage by utilizing this time to improve your skillset. Also use this time to build your network so that it can begin to work on your behalf. Be prepared to show "how" you have improved your worth while unemployed. Tips on resume writing, interviewing techniques, attending job fairs, seeking out additional training for your future are available through the Virginia Employment Commission and the Virginia Workforce Network partners at one-stop locations across the Commonwealth. Also, you can find more information at www.vaemploy.com This way when you talk with your next potential employer, you can share how you have "made lemonade out of lemons". Being resourceful is an additional skill set that you can take with you anywhere in life and is ~Stephanie valuable in any industry. All the best!
Stephanie C. Harper CAREER Magazine | 17 | January /February 2010
What is it? How does it affect the workplace? CM: You are president and founder of The Orrell Group, located just outside of San Jose, California. Tell our readers about your work? LO: I’m considered a leading Millennial (Gen Y) & Generation Relations Expert and consult with companies about how to effectively recruit, manage and retain Gen Y. I also advise clients on how improve their overall generation relations to increase productivity and team building at work. And I’m starting to focus a lot on “employee retention” strategies to help employers keep all generations from leaving. This issue has become a big challenge for many companies because they are finding that it’s not just Millennials who are apt to leave a job quickly; Gen X and Boomers are harder to retain nowadays, as well. CM: What is the official/unofficial definition of a Millennial (Gen Y) Employee? LO: Millennials were born close to 1982 and their end-date is around 2002. Their parents are typically from the Boomer generation or are “older” Gen Xers. CM: Why are Millennials suddenly such a hot commodity in the business world? LO: Our country has a “perfect storm” developing in our workforce. One issue is the Boomer Brain Drain that is starting to happen. The average large company in the US will be losing 30-40% of its employees over the next 5-15 years due to Boomer’s retiring. The second issue is that our birth rate is declining so we’re facing a shortage of around 40 million skilled workers in the US over the next 2-3 decades. Add to that the fact that many students who come here from abroad for a college education are now choosing to go back to their homelands after graduation to start their careers and families there. Places like China and India are much more desirable to live in than they used to be, and their 20-somethings who come here for college are very happy returning “home” to live. Therefore, the US doesn’t get the benefit of them staying here to work as much as we used to. If you take those 3 big points into consideration, you can see why companies are spending millions of dollars on how to successfully recruit and retain Millennials. US-based companies need them to maintain current and future growth levels, and to remain competitive globally. AND our country as a whole needs them for the same reasons; growth and productivity. CM: Can you provide a snapshot of differences between Millennial, GenX, & Boomer Professionals? Millennials have less “tolerance” than the generations before them. They are less tolerant of bad/rude managers; less tolerant of boring jobs; less tolerant of working for a company that isn’t fun/interesting; and less tolerant of “lack of rewards and praise”. CAREER Magazine | 18 | January /February 2010
["The Millenials are here and require something different that Employers haven't dealt with before!" Many Millennials saw their parents work long hours for a job only to see them lose the job due to a merger, acquisition, re-org, or the company closing. They have been raised to look out for themselves and don’t trust that “the company will always take care of you.”] LO: The older generations also want these things in a job/employer, but will typically tolerate the job longer even if these things are/are not present. Millennials grew up with Boomer parents telling them “Don’t make the same mistakes I did! Life is too short! If your boss is a jerk, leave! If your job is boring, find another one!” Millennials also studied big corporate scandals in college, like ENRON, and have a distrust of “the system”. They are hyperaware of ethics and shy away from companies that don’t exhibit a strong code of ethics and integrity. CM: What are some key Millennial traits all employers should know? LO: A strong work ethic (they just want to do it differently than older generations), they are friendly and polite, they are a success-oriented, but they are also high maintenance. The sooner employers accept that last point and make adjustments, the better they’ll do with their Millennial employees. But any company or manager who thinks Millennials will adapt to their “culture”, if it’s not Millennialfriendly, will suffer a high turnover rate. Again, they are less tolerant than generations before them. CM: CAREER Magazine's publisher was quoted in the Wall Street Journal addressing a growing trend where employers are advertising Senior-level jobs but offering Junior Title pay. How will this "trend" affect Millennials with limited work experience? LO: I think with the Boomers retiring, we’ll see more Millennials getting “bigger” titles faster because there are not enough Gen Xers to fill all the positions that will become vacant, and/or they’re not all the best candidates for the positions. Plus, some companies are changing their corporate policies
Gen Y Expert
CAREER Magazine | 19 | January /February 2010
pertaining to advancement to give the promotion to whoever deserves it; not based on who as been there the longest. CM: How will the Millennial influx into business environments shake up corporate cultures? LO: This also could be a very long answer, but here’s the basic overview: Companies are spending millions of dollars to drastically change their cultures to better attract and retain Millennials. I have clients who have wiped out entire floors of cubicles to create “open” work environments that better suit how Millennials like to communicate. And I know of big, stodgy law firms that now have “Fun Friday’s” where everyone meets in the afternoon to bbq and drink beer. There are other companies that have never had a policy where people can work from home, but now they do (even if it’s just 1-2 days per week). The list goes on and on, but all the changes being made have been in the past 1-3 years and it’s because the Millennials have started to arrive in professional work environments. And, quite honestly, the smart companies are open to learning about them and to making adjustments for them. The good news is that a majority of the changes being made benefit everyone at the company; not just the Millennials. CM: What are some tactics companies are using to attract Millennial employees? LO: To some it may sound like common sense, but I conduct seminars all the time for companies who “know” this stuff but haven’t implemented any of it. Or, they have no idea “what to do”. But when you have 85% of students on FaceBook, get on FaceBook! I also have clients who are creative with how to have a company presence on YouTube and MySpace. This is where Gen Y “hangs out”…online! If you are simply relying on your company website to “attract” them you are totally missing the boat. I give a lot of great examples in my book, but a few other tactics for employers to be aware of is look into a presence on SecondLife and CareerTV.com. There are tons of things employers can do to have a much bigger presence online to attract talent, but they are not doing them. My advice to your readers is to put together an internal task force of multigenerational employees and brainstorm ideas together. And then have a Millennial employee execute them! CM: What are a few hot buttons companies should push for recruiting Millennials? LO: Any employer who is not saying/offering the following things is also missing the boat with Gen Y: We offer a great mentoring program; we respect and support your desire for work-life balance; we offer a fun environment; and we have a solid program for fostering your growth and advancement. Those are just a few but will give your readers something to think about. I offer a ton of other tips and examples in my seminars and in my book. I’ll end this answer by saying that have clients who have changed their company cultures pretty drastically to make these promises a “reality” and they have found it very beneficial. CAREER Magazine | 20 | January /February 2010
CM: What are some key strategies that companies need to consider for retaining Millennials? LO: This really maps-back to the hot buttons for recruiting them. You can promise the moon in your recruiting and interviewing process but if an employer doesn’t deliver them, Millennials will leave. And, they’ll go online and tell all their cyber-buddies that your company is not a very good place to work. I had one client who suffered a huge decline in resumes from college grads, and it’s because a large amount of Millennials had left and talked about “why” online. They weren’t saying anything slanderous and they didn’t mention managers’ names, but they simply talked about how this company wasn’t Millennial-friendly. This client then had to do some serious “damage control” through a PR campaign to basically let the 20-somethings of the world know they had made changes and really welcomed Millennials and “knew how to keep them happy”. CM: Can you share a few key tips for Managers that will be supervising Millennial employees? LO: A recent study of Millennial professionals revealed that over 60% surveyed want communication with their manager ONCE A DAY. The pressure on front-line managers is bigger than ever before. If the Millennials don’t like their manager, they’ll leave. Again, Millennials are not married to your brand like older generations were; their connection to the company is with the personal relationships they build within the company.
Your brand may be what attracted Millennials to you or made them interested in your job offer, but your brand won’t retain them. This is a very different belief system than older generations had when they started working. Boomers were raised being told “just be happy you have a job, and stay there as long as you can even if you hate it”. Also, managers and companies need to know rewards and recognition with this generation is bigger than ever before. Lack of rewards and recognition is the #1 reason ANY generation leaves a job, but it’s a much bigger deal for Millennials. If they are not feeling valued and respected quickly, they’ll leave fast–much faster than generations before them. I tell clients that if you can’t get formal company-wide rewards and recognition programs in place, then department managers need to create their own. And, no, quarterly/annual reviews with raises aren’t what I’m referring to. I’m talking about programs where people get “rewarded” weekly/monthly. It can be something as simple as a “thank you” note or a special “great job statue” that is given to a new employee weekly, but you need something to show them you “value” them. CM: In your opinion, how do you think Millennials will influence the professional workforce of the future? LO: I think they’ll do wonderful things to corporate cultures as they reach decision-making positions. I believe they will improve how people communicate (in-person and through technology); how they respect co-workers; and how they foster team-building within departments. Millennials are very much a generation who are into “group” effort and they like collaborative work environments. CAREER Magazine | 21 | January /February 2010
I truly think they will transform business environments to be more desirable as they move up the ladder and reach positions where their opinions are taken more seriously. Right now, I think a majority of companies look at them as a “challenge” because of their demands, but as they are in the work world longer, people will realize the demands they make to be “happy” in a job are things that all generations will benefit from. CM: Do other countries refer to them as Millennials? And are they experiencing the same challenges that US-based companies are with recruiting, managing and retaining them? LO: The short answer is that many countries are seeing similar demands from their 20-something workforces that we see in the US. Employers and managers in countries like Australia, the UK, India and many others, are also dealing with this unique generation and seeing a need to make changes in their work cultures to accommodate them. I think over time, we will be calling the Millennials the “Global Generation”. Our world really has never seen ONE generation so similar in terms of what they desire and seek from employers. CM: A little birdie told us recruiters are now having to interview potential candidates and invite their parents for a site visit or lunch before a job offer is accepted. Does this help or hurt the Millennial talent who would like to be perceived as an "independent adult? LO: First off, yes, having parents attend recruiting lunches is happening. I know employers and recruiters who offer this right away because they know if they can get Mom and/or Dad to tell their adult child “This is the job you should take!” chances are good their adult child will. I even advise clients to have “Family Days” where younger job candidates can bring their parents to the company for a tour and to meet management. Many people roll their eyes at this until I name-drop some well-known companies who are doing this…and it’s working for them! With regards to the second part of your question, sure, there are many Millennials who find this embarrassing and would never want their parents involved in their job seeking process. BUT, clearly, many Millennials are totally fine with this parental involvement otherwise companies and recruiters wouldn’t be offering to “meet the parents”. I know it seems odd to many Gen Xers and Boomers (especially who don’t have kids), but this generation considers their folks as part of their social circle and they value their parent’s opinions. So, again, these are suggestions I offer to employers who can choose to try them or not, but I see other companies implementing these things and getting good results. The Millennials are here, and require some different things that employers haven’t dealt with before. But to pretend this isn’t happening is not going to serve any company well. This generation is shaking up the work world, and they’re not going away, so the smart companies will pay attention and consider making adjustments. The ones that don’t could suffer from low recruitment numbers and high turnover of their future managers and leaders. And, as I tell my audiences of Boomers and older Gen Xers, ”Millennials didn’t just hatch from pods…YOU created them! And now you have to deal with them in the work world.” For more information on Lisa Orrell visit www.theorrellgroup.com CAREER Magazine | 23 | January /February 2010
A Situation FOR REVELATION
Careers and Christ
I am the Lord, that is My name and My glory; I will not give to another… Isaiah 42:8
By Stephanie C. Harper
What is God doing in your career? Ever stopped to consider God may be using your career to reveal Himself? Granted, it is easier to take credit for what you have become than to transfer the glory to the One who made you. God never runs from the opportunity to prove who He is. Often when you experience a valley in your career, it is easy to want to blame the enemy. What if it is not the enemy? What if your valley experience is God’s will for your life? If you were fired for nothing and God restores your position, He wants you to meet Jehovah Tsidkenu, your righteousness (Jeremiah 23:6). If your boss will not get off your back and yet you still have peace, God wants you to meet Jehovah Shalom, your peace (Judges 6:24). When the company begins to lay-off and your number comes up, God wants you to meet Jehovah Jireh, your provider (Genesis 22:14). When your co-worker tries to sabotage your career and you still come out on top, God wants you to meet Jehovah Nissi, your victory/banner (Exodus 15:15). When you are at a crossroad and at the next step in your career, God wants you to meet Jehovah Rohi, your Shepherd (Psalms 23:1). When it feels like you cannot take it another day in that position, God wants you to meet Jehovah T’sur, your strength and redeemer (Psalms 19:4). When you are criticized for being a believer, God wants you to meet Jehovah Makeadesh, your sanctifier (Leviticus 20:8). God wants you to know who He is. To have history with God, you need a situation you can see. When God wants you to see Him in all of His glory, He will reveal Himself. God wants you to understand His power. He will show you in the areas you are most devoted. When God wants to prove who controls your career, He will present a situation for the opportunity of a revelation. CAREER Magazine | 24 | January /February 2010
An innovative team-based approach for gaining success in ever-changing organizations
B LITZ THE LADDER ADDER By J. Todd Rhoad Happy About Publishing (Paperback) ISBN: 1-60005-103-6 (ebook) ISBN: 1-60005-104-9 "With this book, you can save your underself months and even years in moving upward and onward in your job and career"
How important is career mobility? Early career success is a major contributor to continued success throughout the life of your career. Organizational leaders see ‘winners’ as the individuals that are promoted, while ‘losers’ are left to stagnate in their jobs or compete for other horizontal positions. Individuals with low promotion rates can lose to very small differences between competing candidates as they attempt to move up the organizational ladder. Little differences, not big ones, determine who moves up and who does not. Unfortunately, many of these small differences, or barriers, are perceived by management and may not be real at all. This book presents an innovative team-based method for overcoming such barriers to your career mobility.
Using the power of perception \\
The value of the team-based method The team you develop will be instrumental in many ways. They will focus on: Marketing your skills and talents to upper management. Teaching you new skills and eliminating bad habits. Building an effective strategy for reaching your career goals. Implementing portions of your strategy by completing tasks that get you closer to your desired position. A well-researched method Case studies were used to develop and test the teambased strategy. This research puts this approach on a level all on its own since most business self-books basically teach you tips and techniques that seem to be on ‘common sense.’ As you read through the book, you’ll find over 60 resources that were utilized in the development of the best technique you’ll ever use.
As organizations continue to downsize, restructure, merge or be acquired by others, management grows further and further away from their workforce. With little interaction, managers are forced to develop impressions of their constituents based About the author upon very little information. Inaccuracies in these Todd Rhoad's expertise is drawn from twenty years of experience on the corporate ladder through government, impressions can cost you dearly. The Blitz Approach described within this book teaches you and your team to manage perception. The book: Identifies the three informal networks in organizations you need to master: trust, advice and communication. Introduces the team-based model for assessing your image and recreating it to improve your mobility. Provides a strategy map you can use to outline the steps you need to take to get to your brass ring. © 2008 J. Todd Rhoad. All rights reserved.
private, public, profit and non-profit organizations. Todd holds both a Master’s Degree in Electrical Engineering and Business Administration. He is currently Managing Director at Bt Consulting in Atlanta, GA. With over 40 publications in journals, books and conferences, he is a frequent speaker and presenter at symposiums and conferences. To learn more about this book, visit us on the web at
Millennials, L e t ' s Ta l k !
The job market is extremely By Drenna Armstrong tough and as someone who’s just come out of college only six years ago, I’ve experienced it firsthand. But prior to graduation and post graduation, I’ve learned a few things that have helped me along the way; what else can I do but pass it on and pay it forward to those who will follow? There have been First look into an internship. No matter what field you’re planning on stepping into, it is extremely important that you intern as many times as you can before graduation. A diploma is still sought after by many companies but because the market is so tough, employers are looking for someone who is ready to dive right in with at least a small amount of experience. As a college student, your best bet is to start looking for internships as a sophomore and rack them up, as many as possible, right until you graduate. Now, not only have you gained knowledge and experience about your field, but you’ve also gained quite the rolodex of industry contacts. When you’re upon your first interview for a job in your field, this will be information you can use as leverage to be a standout candidate. Second, recognize that you may not have your dream job right out of college. While I certainly encourage that we all push toward our goals (Reach for the stars so if you fall, you’ll land on a cloud, right?) it is important to understand that starting from the bottom of a dream COMPANY and working your way up, is just as important.
In my experience, I’ve found that it has been a bit more beneficial because now you’ve got more than a chance to prove not only your work ethic, but it also shows how hard you’re willing to hustle to reach your goals. This gives upper management the chance to observe you and it gives you a chance to really see your dream field in working motion. You might find that what you initially thought you’d be doing in that field is the exact opposite of what you want to do. You might even find that your dream job is exactly on a chance to learn so much just because you didn’t get what you want right out of the gate. Finally, and this may be a tough one, you don’t know everything! Shocking? Perhaps but it is also very true. As a “millennial kid,” I can understand that the notion that the kinks have been worked out already for us by the prior generation and everything seems easy. However, there’s no one in the world who isn’t or shouldn’t still be learning new things in their lives. In the workforce, that’s no different. You may have education but there will be coworkers who have five, 10, and even 20 years of experience versus your six months and you can learn from them. It will be so easy for you to say, “Oh when I was in school, we learned to do it like this…” and you might be right; but listen to those who’ve put their practices into place and see how you can merge the two findings. The more humble you are, the more you will see that your world will be open to a great career. So, my fellow Millennium Kid, I hope this has been a bit helpful! You’ve got years ahead of you, so make the most of it.
CAREER Magazine | 26 | January /February 2010
TRICK QUESTIONS in the interview process By Stephanie C. Harper
WHY SHOULD I HIRE YOU? When an employer asks Why Should I Hire You? they are not looking for the world's most popular buzz words of hardworking, dependable, team-player and fast learner. They are seeking qualities that set you apart from the pack. This is the perfect opportunity to tell an employer EXACTLY why they should hire you. Focus on your years of experience, the industry-based knowledge that you have, the specialized training you have received, and most importantly how you will add value to the organization.
WHERE DO YOU WANT TO BE FIVE (5) YEARS FROM NOW? Far too many candidates answer by saying "in management" or "owning my own business". During the interview, this can be a bad move if you do not have a clear understanding of the direction in which the company is heading. What if the only management position available is that of the manager who is conducting the interview? You have just told them "I want your job". For those of you saying you want to own your own business. Let me ask this question - why would an employer make an investment in you (hiring is an investment) if you have just told them "I'm not going to stay"? Simply tell that employer that you are excited about the opportunities that will be offered by this company and you hope that advancement opportunities will present themselves. You may also use this question to focus on a personal goal. For example, 5 year from now, I hope to have obtained an advanced degree by taking night classes. .
WHAT SALARY ARE YOU SEEKING? Every company no matter the size has a budget for every position. If a position is budgeted to max out at $30k and you are asking for $50K, it's a dead give away that within 6 months you will feel overworked and underpaid. So it is always best to try to make sure you are on the same page before either party wastes too much time. The best response is one that convinces the employer to tell you what they are willing to pay. Simply state you are seeking to be fairly compensated for your experience and education and offer a salary range (not hourly rate). Another option is to simply ask to see a written job description to gain a better understanding of what will be required of you. CAREER Magazine | 27 | January /February 2010
By Linda Pucci, PhD
Perseverance. Determination. Persistence. Drive. Goal-orientation. Ability to take action. Selfconfidence. Enthusiasm. These are all descriptions of qualities needed for success. What is less obvious is that all these qualities are the result of a person’s level of motivation. One of the most important things in any job (or search for a job) is the ability to maintain motivation. Staying motivated affects your ability to be successful, to achieve your goals and live in a contented way. Even though we may start out with the best of intentions, excited and motivated to achieve, the demands of any job, day to day, can make it difficult to maintain that motivation over time. If you’ve ever procrastinated, you know first-hand the dangers of a loss of motivation. Motivation isn’t just a word used as an excuse for our failure to follow through. It is actually a physical and emotional state that determines our ability to move forward and take effective action. It is our driving force. Ultimately it is a major determinant of success or failure. Most people are able to do tasks that are pleasant, and maintain their motivation while doing tasks they like, but when the job calls for doing things they don’t like, motivation often wanes. The key is to be able to get into a motivated state where you are easily able to tackle things that are unpleasant. Being able to control your level of motivation is vital because your motivation often determines whether you follow through or not. Getting into a motivated state isn’t impossible, or even particularly difficult. Nor is remaining in that state in the face of tasks about which you aren’t enthusiastic. All it requires is the ability to connect mentally and physically with a time in your life when you felt TOTALLY MOTIVATED. This exercise will help you connect with your motivation: 1.
Remember a time when you felt TOTALLY MOTIVATED--a specific time.
Go back to that time in your mind, and imagine yourself floating down into your body. See what you saw back then. Hear what you heard. Really feel the feelings of being TOTALLY MOTIVATED. Re-experience what you see, hear and feel as if it is happening right now. Continued on page 34 CAREER Magazine | 28 | January /February 2010
EDUCATION or EXPERIENCE? CAREER Magazine talked to a few employers and here's what they said...
I want to see both. Let's say I'm hiring a writer. A journalism school graduate should have excellent writing skills. However, it is very difficult to produce compelling business communication unless you have firsthand business experience -- especially with the target audience(s) you are writing for. Who is going to write the better sales brochure -- a person fresh out of school with no sales experience or a person who has been "in the trenches" making sales calls, understanding the types of questions prospects ask, etc.?
Excellent Question! I often come across this dilemma of having a better candidate in terms of experience and i mean really good experience!! - but the only reason he/she is rejected is because of the educational qualification, say not being an MBA Vs a regular Masters degree or even a bachelors degree. I have at times asked employers to actually consider the experience Vs the education because the candidate is not completely a stranger to a respective field; just may not be as high a degree holder. It is 100% dependent on the position and the nature of the work. Commonly, applicants are screened in based on a total number of combined education and experience. When it comes down to the final hiring decision rarely is it based on either of those criteria. It is made on the the competency of the applicant. Both the theory (education) and technical skills (experience) can be taught to the person who is lacking, as long as they are willing to grow. That is by far the preferred applicant. My experience tells me that it all depends on the hiring manager's preference but personally, I always give a higher weightage to the experience. Education is an important indicator of potential but I have seen many senior level candidates who, though they may have a stellar educational background, did not prove themselves in the work arena and likewise, people with an average educational background have gone on to excel and lead in whatever they have done. So ultimately it boils down to finding a fitment between competencies, potential and the right environment for each person. Experience is priority in comparison to education while offering jobs. In case of promotion/upgrade of position within the organization then in that case education plays a major role. But no doubt experience and education should be complimentary & mutually supporting. All depends on nature of the job...!!! But Personally I will be prefer experience...!!! Because many times you can see the person having the lesser degree they are performing very good with experience. I have seen many times the guy education background is very strong but they did not prove themselves. Everything we do with experience in across all areas. Degree & Experience both are important. It depends on the work profile for which an individual is needed. If the work profile is that of handling complex processes then an experienced person with the relevant degree is preferred, in this case degree takes a backseat on the other hand if the profile is that of the entry level then the person with the less experience or a fresher with relevant degree is preferred.
CAREER Magazine | 29 | January /February 2010
MONEY or PERKS?
CAREER Magazine talked to a few employees and here's what they said... As a mom I prefer Perks, but if I was single with no children I'd prefer Salary. I would take the money and take care of the perks myself. Because when you take less money and the perks, it balances itself out. At my age (51) I would take the higher salary. There are some perks that are not needed and therefore wouldn't benefit me. Perks I can do more for myself and my career with education I would go for the perks. I actually had a job where the pay was not all that great, but they paid my day care at $150.00 a week, I had medical and I got to leave to nurse my baby at her day care whenever they would call... How often do you think I had them call!! LOL ;p If the pay is not too much lower than what I was making at my last job and the perks (especially benefits) are great, then maybe go for perks Salary, perks are always what they seem at first. Salary. You can always find a way to address the benefits but once you lower your salary it can be difficult to come up. Women traditionally accept a lower salary in exchange for benefits, and it often hurts them in the long run. I prefer money. I am able to manage it well enough to get the perks. Also, alot of the times the perks will fade away as their costs increase. I would say Money. B/C I would use the income as a pathway to other endeavors. I personally don't need the paid daycare and I prefer to self-educate through books, webinars, networking, etc. Not the traditional route. I don't plan on being anyone's LONG-TERM employee. If I were married and had a helping spouse I would take the perks over the money, assuming I enjoy the job. Sounds like because there is tuition reimbursement involved I obviously have the means to further educate myself ultimately resulting in a better paying job/promotion @ said company with even more pay and perks (Shoot Making Me Ultimately The Boss)!!!!!!!! Philippians 4:6 Be anxious for nothing.......Don't worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. Iâ€™ll take perks for $1000, Alex!
CAREER Magazine | 30 | January /February 2010
Tips for Encouraging Proper Office Behavior
By Traci N. Morgan During the twenty first century, employee behavior in the workplace is a critical ingredient in your business recipe for success. Office behavior is observed constantly, and itâ€™s important to make sure your employees are sending the right messages, whether or not if they are face to face with clients. As a leader or manager, you can encourage proper business behavior and work professionalism by implementing the following tips:
Give Respect to Get Respect If you want to encourage the office behavior of respect. You must start my giving it to others ar all times. From the receptionist to the CEO, the demonstation of repectful attitudes toward everyone is the first step in fostering work professionalism. This also applies to individuals outside of the organization such as delivery persons, office equipment repair persons, property managers and especially customers.
Recognize and Give Confidence to Others Another way to promote proper business behavior is by acknowledging and encouraging employees who display desirable actions. For example, you may observe a positive interaction between a customer and employee on the sales floor. It is appropriate to verbally acknowledge the employee immediately, and in the future, you may want to recognize excellence formally before other employees in a meeting.
Nip Bad Habits Instantly Just like recognitions and building confidence are important, it is also critical to make an effort to discourage negative behaviors. Addressing improper office behavio in the moment is most important. Take employees aside and address issues of work professionalism immediately. Business behavior is learned, and you must be aware of opportunities to teach and train your staff.
Be Dependable and Consistent If you desire a certian type of work professionalism in your company, then you must be consistent in your expectations. Identify and implement the type of office hehavior you desire and do not waver from the standard model. Employees will understand your goals and objectives more clearly if they are consistent. Develop a code of conduct and post a list of what is expected regarding office behavior.
Communicate Openly The most important factor in encouraging work professionalism is maintaing open lines of communication. Being active and present in the workplace allow you to encourage better business behavior and produce opportunties for your employees to communicate with you. The more visible you are, the more receptive your employees will be to criticism and feedback regarding office behavior. Administering positive business behavior in your workforce is ongoing. Make a conscious effort to model work professionalism and encorage others to do the same. In addition, be a proactive agent for change and assist employees with modifying office behavior. The outcome will create stronger morale in the working environment with a productive workforce. CAREER Magazine Magazine | | 31 31| January | January/February /February2010 2010 CAREER
Todd Rhoad is the managing director of BT Consulting, an Atlanta-based consulting company. Todd's expertise stems from twenty years of working in corporate America studying and learning how organizations are changing and what it takes to be successful in them. As a consultant, Rhoad assists others in finding their next level of desired success, whether it's inside or outside their current organization. His coaching includes teaching the Blitz Approach, writing resumes, performing job searches and creating career strategies. As a public speaker, he enjoys the opportunity to talk with colleges and associations who are looking to learn how organizations really function and how they can do it better. Todd holds a MBA and MSEE. As an author, Todd published one of his career strategies last year in his book, Blitz The Ladder. He has made many managerial and technical contributions to books, articles, websites and blogs. www.blitzteamconsulting.com
CAREER Magazine | 32 | January /February 2010
I Live Online
By Jim Stroud
If you ever wondered why a recruiter never called you back, chances are these are the reasons why: Situation: There is a relevancy factor. Many resumes received are not even in the ballpark of what is being advertised. Simply put, some applicants are tossing their resume against the proverbial wall and hoping it sticks. These types of efforts are immediately recognized and consequently ignored. Job Seeker Advice: Make sure your resume is accented with keywords significant to the job you are applying for. (ONLY add those terms relevant to your experience.) A great cover letter that extols your professional virtues is also pertinent to the employer. Situation: There is the issue of spam. Due to the overwhelming proliferation of unwanted solicitations of Viagra, prescription pills, easy lending, gambling and dubious business opportunities from African countries, it has become expedient for companies to initiate spam filtration systems. As such, some emails never reach their intended destination. For example, if you have the credentials of “Magna Cum Laude,” a spam filter may cite the term “cum” and label it as pornographic spam and delete it. Job Seeker Advice: Look for a return-receipt from the company database, an automated email that thanks you for applying and promises a follow-up if there is an interest. If you apply on line and do not receive an email confirmation within 24 hours, then resubmit your resume.
Situation: Your resume did not make it through the OFCCP* process. Even if you have the ideal experience and a recruiter would love to speak with you yesterday, you may have been randomly deselected from the process and the recruiter never had access to your information. Job Seeker Advice: Know that if the job description has required skills listed it is not negotiable by law. If you do not have one of the required skills listed, then do not apply. Also, pay attention to verbiage and the way your experience is described within the job posting. Use similar phrasing in your resume to maximize the chance of being selected in the recruiter’s search. *Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) regulations require covered federal contractors and subcontractors to collect information about the gender, race and ethnicity of each "applicant" for employment.
CAREER Magazine | 33 | January /February 2010
Contined from Page 28
5. 6. 7.
Observe your physiology in that scene. Notice your posture. Are you sitting or standing? Are you slumped over or erect? How are you holding your head? What are your eyes doing? Notice your breathing. Is it slow or fast? Are you feeling energized or tired? Do you feel “in the zone?” Notice what you are saying to yourself. What sort of self-talk are you using? Are you saying things to encourage yourself? Is there a particular word or phrase you are saying to yourself? Is there a particular gesture you use when you are TOTALLY MOTIVATED? Is there a particular feeling in your body that you notice when you are feeling TOTALLY MOTIVATED? Just notice it. Now, once again, allow yourself to feel all the feelings of being TOTALLY MOTIVATED. Say the things you say when you are TOTALLY MOTIVATED, and remember how you look when you are TOTALLY MOTIVATED. Breathe deeply into this state. Now, add to this experience a particular motivational gesture you can use to send yourself back into this state any time you need to feel motivated. This is often called an “anchor.” Make it strong. It might be lifting your arms above your head and yelling, YES! It might be a raised fist, while saying “I CAN DO IT!”, or any other motivational gesture and phrase that works for you. Make sure you really feel that motivation when you make this gesture and u use this phrase.
This exercise will become your key to revving up your motivational level anytime it lags. Just remember the time when you felt TOTALLY MOTIVATED, use the gesture and phrase, and notice your state begin to change. When you need to get yourself motivated, be sure your physiology is in that state. If you are feeling unmotivated, stand up! Make your body assume the position it takes when you are feeling TOTALLY MOTIVATED. Use your motivational gesture. Let it fire you up. Say whatever phrase sends you into this remembered state of motivation, and once again make yourself confident and motivated. Usually people get better at this the more they practice. Do this exercise any time you feel unmotivated. Notice your state begin to shift as you breathe differently, stand differently, hold your head differently, talk to yourself differently, and move in a confident, motivated way. Once you are in this motivated state it is much easier to face those tasks you don’t really like doing. If you can control your level of motivation, you have an edge in creating those qualities that bring success. No matter what you do to stay motivated, you hold the key to creating this state inside you. Other people can encourage you, nag you, threaten you, or challenge you, but ultimately, you control your ability to stay motivated. Mastering this state can be the key to success in your career and other areas of your life. Just remember, when you feel your motivation is lost, it is really still inside you! CAREER Magazine | 34 | January /February 2010
Life After Layoff
By Otis Collier In a world where layoffs happen as often as births, workers today have to prepare and think about their plan of action should the inevitable happen to fall upon them. In highly organized groups such as the military, there is always a backup or alternative plan of action should their first tactic fail. Far too often laid off workers will tell you that they never saw it coming and have no idea as to what they will do next.
It is normal for individuals to get caught in a state of immobility for the first few days of this unfortunate news. However, the way you handle things days after an unexpected layoff can make all the difference in the outcome of your lifestyle over the next several months. Every working individual should have a contingency plan that has been properly thought out and can be immediately put into action should they suddenly find themselves unemployed. The two biggest worries that laid-off workers face are a loss of income and medical benefits coverage. Therefore, most contingency plans should address these two areas of concern. Those who have a pre-established backup plan are less traumatized by their ill-timed joblessness. These individuals are able to quickly take action and make smart decisions that give them the best outcome possible for their situation.
- PROTECT YOUR GOOD CREDIT Credit Card insurance would allows one the ability to postpone monthly payments for up to 18 months and stop all accruing interest during that period in the event of a job loss.
- ANALYZE YOUR LIFESTYLE Look at day to day living expenses that can be cut back such as: disconnecting the home phone, downgrading from premium to basic cable, and foregoing memberships to social organizations (you can still attend meetings).
- RESEARCH ALTERNATIVE MEDICAL BENEFITS Talk with your HR Deparment to get an estimate of what your severance payout would be and use those figures to research alternative benefit options. It is likely that you will find less expensive personal plans than what your employer will offer through COBRA.
- CHECK WITH THE GOVERNMENT Check to see what Government assistance programs would be available should your experience a long period of unemployment. Your contingency plan MUST include this survival mode action approach. Itâ€™s the action plan you move into when the only choice you have is to survive. This means focusing on adequate housing, food, and transportation. If you get down to the basic necessities of living, nothing else matters. There are dramatic decisions you have to make in survival mode. Planning your survival mode ahead of time will help you make wise choices when the need arises. CAREER Magazine | 35 | January /February 2010
By Niakesha Woodley Payroll is one of the most critical regulated areas of business. Accurate payroll processing requires extensive theoretical, practical, and applicable knowledge of IRS mandates, Department of Labor, Social Security Administration, just to name a few. An effective payroll department will keep your organization in compliance with federal and state laws governing minimum wage and overtime and ensure quality operation of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act. This act also known as SOX was passed in response to high-profile business failures, such as Enron and WorldCom, in order to reinforce investment confidence and protect investors by improving the accuracy and reliability of corporate disclosure. As a result of past corporate corruption , Sarbanes-Oxley has made payroll a priority more today than ever before. According to the American Payroll Association, the IRS assessed 13 billion dollars in penalties and interest for noncompliance with payroll tax laws last year. To prevent your company from being in noncompliance you should find out if your payroll department whether in-house or outsourced is keeping your company safe. In order to ensure your payroll is operating in full quality control and compliance mode, you should ensure your payroll professional has the competency and training of a Certified Payroll Professional (CPP). A great investment in your company is to hire only certified payroll professionals to handle this critical role. As illustrated in the IRS Data Book, FY 2006, payroll department calculates, withholds, and deposits payroll taxes for federal, state, and local jurisdictions-1.6 trillion yearly on the federal level alone. This is why payroll processing should be left in the hands of an experienced, skilled, trained, and certified payroll professional. The Certified Payroll Professional designation is given to individuals who have successfully passed a comprehensive exam covering the full range of payroll knowledge. In order to provide a return on your investment, employers should seek out only certified payroll professionals to lead your payroll department. This will decrease the chances of your company facing penalties and payroll litigation as a result of an untrained and inexperienced payroll staff. Bottom line- require and demand a Certified Payroll Professional to handle your organizationâ€™s payroll functions.
Sarbanesâ€“Oxley contains 11 titles that describe specific mandates and requirements for financial reporting. Each title consists of several sections: Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (PCAOB) Auditor Independence Corporate Responsibility Enhanced Financial Disclosures Analyst Conflicts of Interest Commission Resources and Authority Studies and Reports Corporate and Criminal Fraud Accountability White Collar Crime Penalty Enhancement Corporate Tax Returns Corporate Fraud Accountability
CAREER Magazine | 36 | January /February 2010
Are you the "New Kid on your block?"
Business as Usual
By Pamela Burks
People are living longer and seniors are rejoining the workforce, in turn, employers are experiencing an employee workforce that is more diverse than ever. Younger members of the workforce teams have skills that are different from the previous generation team members and the proportion of younger supervisors to management staff to non supervisor staff is growing. Younger supervisors may be challenged relating to their more senior staff and understanding their challenges with new technology and changes business philosophies and the rate of change in organizations. If you’re the “kid” on your business team here are a few tips to better work with your team.
Online communication tools such as email and internal test message services are not as familiar to the previous generation so communications could appear “curt” when the intent is to be brief an may not included details which could lead you to believe information is deliberately being withheld. If you suspect communication is a barrier on your team. A phone call to confirm missing detail is a quick fix but for better long term communication, schedule a time with you and your team members can talk and share with them the value of using bullet points to accommodate brevity while provided detail.
Your senior team members may not be as comfortable sharing with a younger supervisor or manager unresolved conflict on the team for fear of retribution or being thought of as ineffective in the area of “works well with peers” or that you just won’t understand or care. Make sure your team understands that although you don’t expect to handle every little misunderstanding they encounter but that conflict that prohibits their productivity and/or effectiveness on the job should be discussed to ensure constraint to your productivity are known.
We live in a “life comes at you fast” world but it hasn’t always been this way. In the past, business changes occurred less frequently and over a longer period of time. Some team member may not be as comfortable making quick decisions with few facts or shifting processes, procedures and policies so often. During team meetings where yet another change is introduced encourage and give your team the opportunity to ask questions for clarity on what to do and when to do it and be patient with the questions. Online training courses may not provide enough detail.
Your personal time is very important! Consistent overtime is not in your daily plan. You would rather not take the 15 minute break if it means you leave 15 minutes early. You may have team members however who are accustomed to working longer hours to deliver that “extra effort” or “above and beyond” as evidence of commitment to the organization. They may not understand that your commitment is evident in your hard work during regular work hours and although you may be willing to work extra hours periodically, you value your contributions to community and ensuring a work life balance.
CAREER Magazine | 37| January /February 2010
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