SPEAK UP, SPEAK OUT!

So, you’ve been applying for positions and finally land an interview.  This is where you are advised to proceed with caution.  Because now is the time to sell yourself, so you need to know what to say, and how to say it.  Public speaking can be a nightmare for many of us, but an interview is different altogether.  It is usually done in a one-on-one, private setting.  The more you can get to the point of the questions asked, the more forceful you will come across during the interview.  The bottom line is not to clutter your answers with unnecessary information, or the interviewer may you tune out.  Improvement starts with making yourself aware.  Make eye contact when you talk to the interviewer, this will help you appear more relaxed and confident.  Appreciate the person you are speaking to, because they took time out to talk with you.  Know that overall, it’s not about you but whether you are a good fit for the company.

Here are a five tips to help you along the way:

1-  Practice speaking out loud; the more you do it, the easier it gets.

2-  Think before you speak; organize your thoughts.

3-  Project your voice so the interviewer can comfortably hear you.

4-  Speak with confidence.

5-  Believe in yourself and in what you are saying.

Improving your verbal communication skills requires constant awareness, intentional effort, and the desire to improve.  How you communicate with others verbally plays a defining role in both your personal and professional life.  Learning to speak with authority and confidence will make you more successful in the workplace.  Also, realize that your body language can have an effect on how your verbal communication is interpreted.  Your nonverbal actions can detract from the effectiveness of your words.  Stay in control of your body language to ensure your words are assessed positively and correctly.  Realize that your actions or responses during an interview can either make you or break you.

Whether you are currently out of work or a working professional looking to make a career move, feel free to contact me at http://www.msselfconfident.com.  I can help you on your journey to a new career and help you map out the plan that will take you there.

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The Pursuit of Happiness!

If you are finding it harder to juggle the demands of your job and the rest of your life, you’re not alone.  Many people are working extra hours or are on call when they are not physically at work.  Focus your time and attention on the things you can control.  Setting very clear boundaries between your professional and personal life is one of the best things you can do for yourself.  It allows you to have personal satisfaction, while maintaining professional fulfillment.

Here are eight tips to try for a healthy work life balance:

1-  Acknowledge priorities; make a list.

2-  Schedule downtime; make it a point to schedule time for your family and friends.

3-  Don’t waste time; stop doing things that don’t add value to your life.

4-  Avoid over-commiting; learn when and how to say “NO!”

5-  Use a work-flow system; track all tasks.

6-  Is it cost effective; is it really worth your time?

7-  Get moving; plan time for exercising.

8-  Communicate; let your plans be known.

Even the best of jobs can cause stress, but the benefits of creating a healthy work life balance will be invaluable.  As a result, you will become more confident and creative in your decision-making.  You will no longer feel the need or urge to take work home or worry about work related issues while you are home.  Understand that we are all humans, we make mistakes and we keep striving to make it all work.  We won’t always strike the right work life balance, but we must continuously adapt to make it work for us.  Sometimes we must move boundaries, change habits or reduce our workloads, but recognize that achieving the pursuit of happiness involves planning, sacrifice, commitment and a clear understanding of yourself.

There are no short cuts that will lead to lasting success, that only comes after a lifetime of dedication and consistent hard work. Prioritizing and planning will empower you to make the right choices and will remove the state of uncertainty.  So wherever you might be in life, contact me at http://www.msselfconfident.com.  I can help you on the right road to a healthier work life balance and help you implement a career plan that works best for you.

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A New Chapter!

Choosing a career is often one of the most important decisions a person will ever make.  By focusing on your interests, you can start the next chapter in your career.  This decision will be based solely on YOU and YOUR career choice.  Starting over is never easy, but sometimes we may need to reinvent ourselves.  One reason may be you are looking to reenter the workforce after staying home raising the kids.  Another may be you lost your job after being with the same company for twenty years.  Whatever the case may be, it’s not  too late to start over.  Here are some tips to help you write YOUR next Chapter:

1-  Decide what you would like to do professionally.  Start by figuring out what it is that you like, what interest or motivates you.  Your hobbies may give you a good place to look.  Discover what gives you joy in life and then find a way to obtain a job in that field.

2-  Establish a timeframe.   Take time to lay down the foundation for your career.  Do some research to figure out if there is a market for your new career move.  Figure out how long it might take for you to get started working in your new profession.

3-  Get the necessary training.  You may already have some of the skills you will need from previous work experience, so take the time to assess your current assets.  See if you can take a class or seminar in order to build the skills necessary to move forward.

4-  Be flexible.  Starting out fresh may mean starting out in a lower position than you may have previously held.  It may also mean taking a pay cut, earning less than you were previously use to.  Bare in mind these are only stepping stones to boost your career into high gear.

Reinventing yourself at any age can be a scary process, but it can also be an exciting time to move away from your comfort zone.  This is a time to challenge yourself to find a career that is just right for you.  A new career can make a healthier, happier you and a better work-life-balance.

Preparation and planning the next chapter of your career will enable and empower you to make the right decision.  That’s where I come in, to help you along your journey.  Whether you are currently out of work or a working professional looking to be successful at work, feel free to contact me to help guide you along in the process  www.msselfconfident.com.   I can help implement a plan that works best for you.  Remember, a  well prepared person can better understand the options and choices available to them and I would like to help aide you in turning the odds around in your favor.

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Take Responsibility

Career planning is not something that should be done only once and then forgotten as we move forward in our careers or daily lives.  Rather, it should be done on a regular basis.  The average person will change jobs many times in their lifetime, and it’s never too late to start your planning.  It can provide you with goals to achieve in your current position or with plans for beginning a transition to a new one.  Either way, career planning should be a rewarding and positive experience and we all need to take responsibility for our lives.

Here are a few tips to start you on your way:

1- Make it an annual event, set goals.  You will feel better about your career choice and direction.

2- Map out your direction.  Try not to dwell on your past, see what you can do differently in the future.

3-  Make notes of your past accomplishments.  This will help you create a resume when looking for you next job.

4- Review career and job trends.  It is important to see where job growth is expected.

5- Explore new education and training opportunities.  Take a chance to grow and learn new things.

Career planning can help you be better equipped for the uncertainty that lies ahead in your job search.  Spend time figuring out who you are and what you want out of life.  Learn to look beyond your comfort zone and see other possibilities.  Set short-term ( in the coming year) and long-term (beyond a year)  career goals. Review and adjust these goals as your plan progresses or changes.  Develop new goals once you accomplish your previous goals.

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Interviewing: Practice Makes Perfect

Most of people are really bad at the most important part of the job search – interviewing. The sad reality is most people do not even know they are bad interviewers until they are told, which rarely happens. Unfortunately, human resource departments do not offer much follow-up detail if you are not the selected candidate do to potential liability concerns aka. lawsuits!

Therefore, it is up YOU, the candidate to do your due diligence. The best way to ace an interview is to practice. Thankfully, the old adage is true, practice does indeed make perfect. Participating in mock interviews help to reduce nervousness, helps centralize thoughts, and forces you to think about yourself and your job history. In many interviews, there usually is not a right or wrong answer, hiring managers simply want to see how well you think, communicate, and react under pressure.

While it certainly helps to practice with someone like myself, who is trained to point out mistakes and help coach you to do better, any practice is good practice. Friends and family members are a good place to start. Remember the more comfortable you are with the questions and the process, the better you will do in the end. Feel free to set-up a mock interview with my team and I by scheduling an appointment at www.msselfconfident.com.
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So You Didn’t Make The Cut!

Nobody likes rejection, especially when it comes to a job interview. All of us have experienced it at some point in our lives. The best thing you can do after getting turned down is to stay positive and not get discouraged. Most people are hesitant to speak about job rejection because it means admitting failure. Instead, we need to treat each rejection as a lesson learned, realize that it is over and move on to greener pastures. The job market can be very tough and competitive at times, but don’t give up. Job rejection is to be expected and is very much a part of the job search process. Here are some ways on dealing with being rejected:

1. Don’t take it personally; sometimes even a great candidate doesn’t make the cut.

2. After each interview ask the interviewer for feedback. Take a step back, re-group and think of the things that you could have done better.

3. Get busy occupying your time with positive things that will help you forget what happened. Focus on your goals and research companies and positions that meet your needs and skills.

4. Talk about it. Your friends and family can provide valuable insight to guide you in the right direction. The more you open up, the more likely you will have to get interview tips or even job leads.

In your future interviews send a thank-you note to the interviewer as soon as possible. Thank him or her for the interview, and say that you look forward to hearing about the position. By following up, this shows that you are really interested in the job. Dealing with job rejection can be tough, but it is something everyone encounters at some point or another. Sometimes not getting a job can be a blessing in disguise, you can learn what you seek in an employer, what you want in a job, better prepare for the next interview and help you move forward in your job search.

Whether you are currently out of work or a working professional looking to be happier and more successful at work, feel free to contact me at http://www.msselfconfident.com. I can help with your interviews and implement a career plan that works best for you.

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Interview Your Best: Frequently Asked Questions

There are all sorts of books written about the most frequently asked interview questions with suggestions about how to answer them. Some of the questions are quite simple and can be answered right away, while others require some thought before an answer is given. Two questions in particular you can bet the interviewer is going to ask is: “What is your greatest strength? & What is your greatest weakness?” The interviewer is really trying to find out what skills you have that will help you succeed in the job, if you are hired, as well as what could cause problems.

When you try to find your strengths, choose those skills that describe things that come naturally to you. It is also important not to confuse strengths with likes. What you like to do is not necessarily what you do best. Your strengths are what you do best and where your real talents lie, it gives you a competitive advantage and shows where you can create the most value for other people. Equally important is knowing your weaknesses, and everyone has some. These are the skills that you have a hard time getting done, they are difficult for you. If you are not good at something, improving even a little can have a positive impact on your overall quality of life.

As we all know, the interview is a meeting of the minds. It is a short period of time spent with the interviewer who has to decide whether the employee is a perfect fit for the job or not. Put your energy into your strengths statement; show what you have to offer. Let the interviewer know that although you may not be perfect, you are working on any shortcomings you might have. Knowing your strengths & weaknesses can help you choose the right career path. It can also help you effectively prepare answers to interview questions that are likely to come up. Remember, practice makes perfect so you need to practice well before the interview. At the same time, your answers should not come out as too rehearsed.

Whether you are a freelancer or employed professional looking to be happier and more successful at work, feel free to contact me at http://www.msselfconfident.com. I can help you with your interview questions and implement a plan that works best for you.

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